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Mike M
01-23-2008, 08:22 PM
Okay, I swore I'd never use MR 11's but here I am.

Does anyone know a long lasting MR 11 bulb, better yet, MR 8?? As well as a good housing. My last customer wants me to come back and illuminate a nice intimate patio area (screened) with tropicals, hot tub, etc.

My preference would be a project with one or two primary fixtures styles, based on all MR 11's, or even 8's if the bulbs are reliable and the fixtures are awesome.

I look forward to the responses.

Tanks.

irrig8r
01-23-2008, 09:29 PM
Again Mike,
The equivalent to an MR-11 lamp I've found to be most satisfactory is the AR-11 Xenolux, available for a small number of fixtures from FX in 20 W and 35 W.

Why nobody else appears to employ this lamp is a mystery to me.

The DCB socket is more durable than a bi-pin and holds the lamp in place better for downlighting (See the FX TS-20). The lens is frosted and has a glass front. I haven't seen it used in an uplight though...

For uplights FX offers Xenolux MR-8s and MR-11s in both 20 W wide and 20 W narrow.

http://www.fxl.com/FX_Lamp_chart.pdf

Mike M
01-23-2008, 09:34 PM
Greg;

I hope I am not to blame for all that messin around playin with all those user cp features! :laugh:

irrig8r
01-23-2008, 09:57 PM
Oh... you noticed, huh?

:o

Mike M
01-23-2008, 10:03 PM
Look man, take my advice.

Avatars and signature images are delicate impressions which reflect our most personal, inner-selves. That being said, I am highly against using them in the fear I may offend someone.

Mike

Mike M
01-23-2008, 10:06 PM
Xenolux MR-8s

Thanks Greg. Looks like I may have to look into FX. Those specs look interesting.

Mike M
01-23-2008, 10:10 PM
FX website, boasting ten year warranty:

"No other lighting manufacturer has the confidence in their products to offer this type of guarantee because no other manufacturer has worked so hard to identify and resolve potential problems before they occur. Our commitment to designing and fabricating the very finest components assures your clients years of trouble-free enjoyment from their FX lighting system."

irrig8r
01-23-2008, 10:56 PM
FX website, boasting ten year warranty:

"No other lighting manufacturer has the confidence in their products to offer this type of guarantee because no other manufacturer has worked so hard to identify and resolve potential problems before they occur. Our commitment to designing and fabricating the very finest components assures your clients years of trouble-free enjoyment from their FX lighting system."

Well, back when they began, a 10 year warranty was pretty good. They can't practically offer anything longer on aluminum fixtures, though they probably should on their copper and brass.

I have no idea what Kichler or others guarantee with their aluminum... Nightscaping's is 10 years though...

Mike M
01-23-2008, 11:08 PM
Greg,

It ain't the ten year, it's the funny quote after it.

But please, discard that. 10 years is fine. I'm tyring to get some quotes online. I'm also trying to find all the manu's that have cool little fixtures for those lamps.

Something appealing about a portrait around a little indoor tropical scene with slick mr 8's. Kinda cool when the knuckel is the same size as the housing. As long as I can count on the 8's burning a solid year. Don't want those neat fixtures failing me.

I might go with niche mr 16 down lights and a couple ups, just to be safe. But I like the specs/info on the 11's you linked.

irrig8r
01-23-2008, 11:10 PM
Kichler (this is about the most stringent warranty I've run across):

We warrant the Kichler Landscape product featured on this site will be free from defects in material and workmanship for five years (with the exception of light bulbs and Kichler non-Landscape lighting products). We warrant our transformers in the Textured Architectural Bronze finish will be free from defects in material and workmanship for 10 years.....

...Seller’s warranty does not apply to any Products that have been subjected to misuse, mishandling, misapplication, neglect (including but not limited to improper maintenance), accident, improper installation, improper packaging of products returned to Kichler, modification (including but not limited to use of unauthorized parts or attachments), or adjustment or repair.....

....Finishes for fixtures installed outdoors are subject to change due to prolonged exposure to sunlight, airborne pollutants and other forms of weathering....

Mike M
01-23-2008, 11:13 PM
:)

Was wondering how long it would take a moderator to catch my Johnny Cash avatar.

irrig8r
01-23-2008, 11:16 PM
I take that back. Hadco is worse yet:

http://www.hadco.com/hadco/Public/ProductDetail.aspx?pid=47



Description
The BL616 is made with die-cast aluminum and has a fully adjustable swivel arm with vibration-proof locking teeth.

Specifications
Housing: Die-cast marine grade aluminum alloy. Fully rotatable shroud, gasketed, die-cast marine grade aluminum alloy.

Warranty: Three-year limited warranty.

irrig8r
01-23-2008, 11:17 PM
:)

Was wondering how long it would take a moderator to catch my Johnny Cash avatar.

That was quick...

irrig8r
01-23-2008, 11:22 PM
And check this one from Vista out:

Vista Professional Outdoor Lighting fixtures and transformers are guaranteed against mechanical and electrical defects for a period of three (3) years* for fixtures and ten (10) years* for powder-coated, electro-plated steel transformers and a lifetime warranty for stainless steel cases. In addition, Vista offers a ten (10) year warranty against corrosion for all composite fixtures and ballast enclosures. Metallic ballast enclosures are guaranteed for three (3) years against corrosion. Lamps and Ballasts are covered by manufacturers’ trade warranty.

The Lighting Geek
01-23-2008, 11:23 PM
I used to use ar11 fixtures but have since quit using them due to failure rates. If the bulbs are not coated with silicone grease in the sockets they arc in the sockets and the bulb quits working even though the bulb is ok.

Mike M
01-23-2008, 11:30 PM
Wow, cool info, Tom. That's nuts. Makes me anxious.

What about using this application as an opp for trying LED's?

The Lighting Geek
01-23-2008, 11:53 PM
I tend to stick to the fixures with MR16 vs MR11 or MR8. The biggest reason is bulb life. I always approach different applications that are new to me as an exercise on how to make it work with what I have. Sometimes I limit myself to certain fixtures to challenge myself. I say this because, if you think about it long enough you can find a way to use just about any fixture you have without compromising the end result. I practice this at my house all the time, using fixtures in ways they were not intended just to see what happens. I don't recommend this on your jobs. It is a little thing but it has made me a better artisan. I think LED lighting needs more time to develop.

Lite4
01-24-2008, 12:40 AM
Hey Tommy, I have had the same problem with all my MR-11s too. You think that they are dead so you give them a tug to pull em out and they come back on. What a pain in the butt for service calls. I went back and started lubing the sockets with moderate success. You are right about the 16s though. I think I would try to primarily stick with those. Someone said the GE Precise MR-11 was a very good bulb though. My problem may have the fixture I was using also. It was a Vista 2205. I have nothing but problems with the sockets in all of that same fixture. All other MR-11s have been Ok though.

irrig8r
01-24-2008, 01:01 AM
I used to use ar11 fixtures but have since quit using them due to failure rates. If the bulbs are not coated with silicone grease in the sockets they arc in the sockets and the bulb quits working even though the bulb is ok.

Well, I have only had experience with about 60 of the AR-11s to date, but I've never had a problem...greased or not, cuz I've installed them with and without....

Pro-Scapes
01-24-2008, 01:53 AM
mike before you go jumpin for the mini lights you may wanna post up the photos. There may be a good way to light it you or others have not thought about .

If you have never used an mr8 or mr11 before i think you will be quite surprised at the output of them. My experience is limited to them I was going to use them to downlight a deck with a roof on it but decided on cast niche lights with the reflectors removed instead do to a wider softer photometric., I got here a spj mr8 fixture I have had for some time now. Its a tough little fixture but offers no shroud.

Mike M
01-24-2008, 08:45 AM
Well, just to make things clear again, I don't think I'll ever use 11's or 8's unless I'm doing an entire layout or zone with only that scale. Now, unless we nail the reliability issue, I will avoid them altogether.

Tha being said, I share the view with Tommy that is fun to challenge myself and try new things, in developing my own signature. That is why I like demo kits so much. Dang that's it, Tommy! Maybe I should put together a little set of tiny jobbers for mini demo's in screened porch or atrium-like settings. I may try this with little LED's. Again, I have no problem with small scale, or LED's, as long as the whole scene has continuity.

Now I have to see if I can merge LED with small scale illumination. You have to think about the benefits of service, too. The home owner would need to be present to enter a screened porch/pool any time a bulb goes out. It's the perfect setting for long lasting bulbs.

sprinkler guy
01-25-2008, 02:24 AM
Mike,
It sounds like you are having reservations about using an MR-11 or MR-8 bulbed fixture, but I thought I would throw this in anyway. Auroralight makes a cool MR-8 spot called a Cabrillo. I put a couple up over two fountains about a year and a half ago, and just recently changed one of the bulbs. Really nice looking copper and brass light, and the light output from the MR-8 is crisp and bright.

Mike M
01-25-2008, 08:44 AM
Sean,

Thanks. I was recently looking at that fixture online. Slick!

I'm taking Billy's advice on buying fixtures for special applications to play around at my own house, and then maybe demo it at the homeowner's screened patio.

My next Q:

Does any reputable manu currnetly make an MR8 LED?

irrig8r
01-25-2008, 11:45 AM
I think the small space that an MR-8 fixture has would be tough to fit an LED into... better to find a small spot fixture designed around an LED... it's coming soon.

irrig8r
01-25-2008, 11:56 AM
Just a reminder Gentlemen, as professionals we don't say "bulbs" :nono: , we say "lamps" :)

Mike M
01-25-2008, 07:06 PM
Lamp sounds corny. So does luminaire and louver.

I'm gonna change it back to the original: fire.

How much fire should we use, a 20 watt or 35? I mean really, sealed fixtures are ovens. PAR's go in pipes, like smoke. "So whattaya ya got smoken in that pipe, a 35 or a 50?"... "50?? That's way too much fire."

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
01-26-2008, 04:15 AM
Hey Mike... you inventing some new jargon there? LOL

Corny or not bulbs are lamps, fixtures with lamps installed in them are Luminaires, and a louver is a louver.

Now I just have to get you guys focused into the right niche (pronounced neeesh not Nitch)

Regards.

Mike M
01-26-2008, 09:58 AM
Now I just have to get you guys focused into the right niche (pronounced neeesh not Nitch)
Regards.

James, you get your pronunciation direct from k-bek? neeesh is French, sheeesh. I know the word came from France, but I don't want to speak French. We call it nitch or nish and we justify either by placing it in our American dictionaries that way.

You need to know a few things. Where I came from, you were cursed if you ever tried pawning off a Canadian coin to a merchant, but that sob would pawn it right back to the next customer. Up-state New York, French Canadians were always treated as third-world immigrants. Probably because the truck drivers kept sneaking in Canadian coinage, or perhaps it goes back to the Canadian support of Indian terrorist activities inside of American. (lol)

fyi

I have French (French Canadian to be exact) in my blood. I also have Native American in that same lineage. My mom's a 100% Eastern European Polock, and my Dad has an Irish immigrant (a drunk I suppose) adding to his crazy mix, as well as German (no Nazi, but a Kraut no doubt) and Welsh, I think, and some others I can't remember. According to Carl Sagan, sooner or later up the tree, we are all related several times over and over and over. Got that, cousin?

Eden Lights
01-26-2008, 03:37 PM
I will admit I havn't read this thread except for the original poster. MR11's and MR8's are not a replacement for MR16's, they are a tool to be used when the scale of a MR16 fixture will not work. I have hundreds of MR11's in the field and I have only used the GE precise lamp in them except for some that are running a Phillips DC AR lamp and we do not change those lamps any more than our MR16's as far as the MR11's are concerned. As far a MR8's are concerned we have about 100 in the field, but some of those are Pool and Spa fixtures. We have found that they last about a 1/3 as long as the typical MR16 Constant Color Precise lamp, they are expensive, and have limited beam spreads, so with all that we use them only when necessary and figure in the increased maintenance costs for our standard lamp warranty period.

Mike M
01-26-2008, 09:23 PM
Eddie, dumb q, did you select that fixture primarily for the narrower base to mount flush with edges? I couldn't figure out why you posted that pic, until I found Waldo. Talk about concealment.

As for lamps, I'm going to try LED's on a small scale app, simply because it's inside a screened porch and I want to eliminate as much as poss. getting in there to service.

Color temp and lumens shouldn't be much of an issue on mostly lumenscent tropicals in close proximity, and with no halogens in the area with which to clash.

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
01-27-2008, 01:34 AM
Give them a try mike, but in my experience you will probably not be happy with their light output, coverage and uniformity when used in a closed in space or even in multiples lighting a structure.

LED lamp modules are not ready for colour intensive interior and architectural applications. You have to be very careful to batch order your lamps in order to ensure colour consistancy between the lamps. Ensure you can order all your lamps from the same batch/bin. If you cannot, you will be surprised how much variance there is between the lamps. This is not critical when using them in a tree mounted moonlighting application, because the random variation in colour of the lit objects will be more pronounced then the variance between the lamps.

Also be very mindfull of the type of fixture you are installing them in. I would shy away from installing a high power LED lamp into a small scale fixture, with limited air inside the body and made out of thinner brass or copper. These things need to shed their heat. It is critical to the life of the module and to the phosphors that are used as a coating on the LEDs to warm their tone up.

Regards.

Mike M
01-27-2008, 08:53 AM
James, lots of stuff there.

I think I may try LED's, perhaps a few on my front porch first.

Here's why the screened porch area seems like a good app.:

Proteced from rain, soil, and landscape equip, I could probably use either composite ABS or aluminum, or any material recommended for good heat sinks. Forgiving plant materials--no direct lighting on wall surfaces. Inconsistency with color temp, output issues, etc., should be less of a concern in the case, I hope.

Pro-Scapes
01-27-2008, 10:45 AM
Mike email me I might just have something up your alley.

I have had an mr16 led running for 4 days now non stop inside a tight Kichler 15384 bbr bullet... not much airspace in there and its pretty heavy brass..

I will report the fixture is cold to the touch outside...the lamp you can grab comfortably..

I think alot of the short comings of the led now are in reflector design not just output. They use a smooth polished reflector and this causes a pretty sharp line. Will try to get pics of the led vs halogen tonight if I can.

Mike if you do decide to LED that job and its all plant material I am pretty certain you can get colored lenses to change the colors and help bring out the plants natural colors.

Mike M
01-27-2008, 11:42 AM
Mike if you do decide to LED that job and its all plant material I am pretty certain you can get colored lenses to change the colors and help bring out the plants natural colors.

Billy, it's 10:30 AM Sunday morning and you're already over the self-imposed quota of responses for this week.

Filters might work, but pushing light through lenses is at a cost of foot candles, which may already be an issue with the LED's. I guess I'll have no idea just sitting here talking about it, I need to order a bunch and see what happens in the field.

Let's do this Billy. Any recommendations on fixture/lamp spec's for a starting point? I like small scale for this app.

ChampionLS
01-27-2008, 11:40 PM
I still say LED's will never flourish in the landscape Lighting marketplace. Landscape lighting was designed to be used with incandescent and/or halogen lamps. This is accomplished by using heavy gauge circuit cable,and power units. After all- The intentions are to Light up your landscape...Right?

Now switch over to LED. LED's consume very little energy, so therefore no need to use heavy 10 or 12 gauge circuit cable, or that big stainless steel power unit. So when designing a new system, do you use 18 or 22 gauge circuit cable? NO. This will not hold up with the stresses applied to it when buried in the ground. At least with a heavier cable, if it were accidentally dug up with a shovel while installing new plantings, the chances of cutting it are much less.

The other obvious problems are retrofitting. LED lighting can not produce the same amount of lumens as a equal sized lamp. Even if you started out with a LED fixture, what happens when Mr Happy Homeowner tries to replace that expensive LED with a conventional lamp? POOF! an overload condition occurs, because the LED,and Lamp's sockets are designed equally. It's a problem waiting to happen.

Thirdly, Theres all this Green talk about saving the environment. While I am all for what's beneficial for the planet, I do not believe switching over to LED's or Compact Fluorescent are the answer. There will always be line voltage available. There will always be Air Conditioning. There will always be street lights and lit parking lots. There will always be big city life- Las Vegas, NYC etc. Switching over to LED's for lighting up a landscape is as poor as trying to boil a pot of water with a match.

I think LED's have it's place in technology - Flat Screen TV's, electronics, automobile dashboards, etc., but trying to harness "light output" of anything imaginable from a semiconductor is ridiculous. In this world that we all live in, there are still Four basic elements. Earth, Water, Air, and Fire. The sun lights the earth every day, and it is composed of fire. A burning filament in a incandescent or halogen bulb still produces the truest- near-to-life replica of the sun. What's next? Doing away with a candle lit dinner and going for the LED candles?

Lamps are still cost effective to produce. Just as glass bottles are still used. The Microwave oven didn't replace the Pizza Oven or the Toaster Oven. Theres no substitute for convection heat produced from a open flame. Oh wait...theres that word FIRE again. Someday, somebody will invent a LED BBQ grill. Can't wait to taste one of those burgers!.

irrig8r
01-28-2008, 12:56 AM
You have some interesting points, and I'm not prepared to debate them all, but LEDs are already proving useful in the landscape. Maybe they won't be used everywhere... or in every application, but why not put them to use where they fit?

There is already legislation pending here in California that for better or worse will limit the uses of incandescent lamps... The further development of LEDs will give us more choices.

Maybe new ways of wiring will come with them...

Some of aren't comfortable with change, but change is one of the few constants in life...

Do you still listen to music on 8 track tapes? Do you still use a 486, or is it a Mac Centris? Or are you typing up proposals with an IBM Selectric?

Things change, sometimes for the better. Sometimes not.

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
01-28-2008, 01:24 AM
Anthony... Lead, follow or get out of the way is how I think it goes...

LEDs are here. They are being improved and perfected for all host of lighting applications on a continual basis.

Open the pages of a magazine like the LD&A from IESNA and you will find the LEDs lead the news. In Europe, Asia and even here in Canada, most large scale commercial and civic projects are now using LED. Residential applications are coming on stream at an quickening pace. Most of the major Landscape Lighting Manufactures are currently working on advanced applications of LEDs... it is just a matter of time.

As for all of the other limitations you stated in your post, they are moot. I know because I have designed, developed and installed many rugged, functional, successful and attractive LED based lighting systems already.

Hey, someone has to follow I suppose....

ChampionLS
01-28-2008, 09:27 PM
I'm not against LED's, I just feel to truly enjoy the effects of natural light (derived from FIRE) there is no substitute. California has always had some pretty quirky laws as compared to the rest of the country (i.e.- Putting catalytic converters on weed whackers to reduce greenhouse gasses), while there are thousands of Jets flying overhead on daily basis is ludicrous. I feel if UL came out with a new standard...something in addition to 1838, that would be specifically for LED lighting, then products and technology could be implemented and designed soley for that market. Just trying to retrofit is a failed attempt before it ever takes off.

Just my two cents worth.

JoeyD
01-29-2008, 11:41 AM
LED's in the news is like the Recession. Its just abunch of people repeating themselves stirring a bunch of hype. There will be a time that they will have a solid place in L/S lighting but they still need to go through some improvements. James I saw your LED mr16 module and although the color rendition wasnt bad the light output was very weak......we still have a ways to go. That module wasnt even close to that 20w BAB, and yes that was a cheap BAB that had a lot of light escaping form the back side but that only hurts your argument becuase a quality lamp would not lose so much light out that back. Not knocking you though, I as a lot of others respect your pushign and knowledge of LED's. You are a go to guy for info I belive as you are doing more field testing then most manufacturers!! I know where I am sending my new LED lights once made for testing!! MUSKOKA BABY!!

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
01-29-2008, 12:56 PM
You got the address Joey? Send them up man... Just do me a favour and don't for a minute think about sealing the lamp modules into the fixtures! I will not be a part of that nonesense.

Have a great day.

JoeyD
01-29-2008, 01:10 PM
You got the address Joey? Send them up man... Just do me a favour and don't for a minute think about sealing the lamp modules into the fixtures! I will not be a part of that nonesense.

Have a great day.

LOL.....Just for you James!! LOL

I will keep you posted though for real, you will be on my list from now on for testing in those God awful temperatures!!