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  #81  
Old 03-28-2011, 07:17 PM
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The Lighting Geek The Lighting Geek is offline
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I would agree with Tom. I have been doing this a long time, and I never leave things to chance. Plus, meeting the client to check out the new system is the best part. That moment of bonding reassures that they made the right decision to hire you, and that they will tell everyone about you and their yard.
We solved a problem for the client and leave the the job a hero.
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  #82  
Old 03-28-2011, 09:38 PM
David Gretzmier David Gretzmier is offline
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I am heading out this evening to check one today as well. even though nearly every customer is happy with our daytime aiming, I tend to adjust a few for me.

I see too many million dollar plus homes that have had shoddy lighting done with distributor fixtures to think that those folks could not have been my customer. They often don't know how good it could have looked, and will probably never know, because they just bought what someone sold them.

That being said, to contradict my own argument, I do alot of redos and I am bidding 3 this week.
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  #83  
Old 03-29-2011, 12:45 PM
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emby emby is offline
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Wow this thread has been great to read. There has been a few great comments and suggestions for those that are novices.

I agree with Tom that there should be an organized system in place for all those that want to get into landscape lighting. Some of these people are landscapers or grass cutting businesses etc. looking to expand the bottom line. With organizations such as the AOLP this would allow the proper training and techniques to ensure that they are educated properly.

I won't be shy here but when I decided that I wanted to learn I had no idea that the AOLP or the Landscape Lighting Institute even existed. The reason is that the first contact I had was with a distributor and manufacturer because I wanted to purchase more robust fixtures other than whats offered at Home Depot. Then they invited me to the 1 day "fantastic" seminar which was at the owner's residence of this particular distributor. They discussed how great the product was and tried to teach all the people OHM's Law so that at the end of the day they could install the system at the house. There is a problem with this and I only see this now because of my past experiences and training. They had already completed the following before I even arrived:

1. Discussed a budget with the client
2. Discussed what they will illuminate
3. Might of completed a mock up or a demo for them to see.
4. Developed a plan and proposal
5. Presented the proposal to the owner and received payment
6. Already established what size transformer and where the 120 volts will be coming from
7. Calculated voltage drop

As a participant to these one day wonders you miss all that important information that will ensure some success. Oh, and you miss the information on which lamp your going to use because after all is that not the MOST important tool that you will use. Instead they sell you on how robust their fixtures are and how nice they look in the garden. MR16 35 watts 24degree lamps in all the up lighting with no detail or contrast to provide the client. Where do you learn the passion and artistic flare about landscape lighting in all of that. How can you ever illuminate a tree with one fixture or two fixtures with the same beam spread?
In my opinion if your going to teach your customers how to do lighting than collaborate with the AOLP and all those professionals that know how to induce that artistic flare. Sure they talk about grazing, moonlighting, and up lighting but do they ever have you stay until the sun sets and show you this is the most important time of your installation. Aiming at night is an essential ingredient to the job. I still cannot believe this did not happen and you wonder why there are so many out there that plunk the fixtures in and leave at 5pm.
Boy have I missed anything here. I think you all get my point. There is sooooo much missing from those 1 day seminar's.

So for all those manufacturers that are peeping, join and work with the AOLP and take all those potential clients to a group of individuals that are willing to educate them properly. You will still sell those fixtures because in the end they will remember who suggested they join the AOLP.
Just my thoughts as I take a break.

Ken
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  #84  
Old 03-29-2011, 02:50 PM
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emby emby is offline
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I did not inclued Bob and Bernies names at the beginning of my post so I do apologize to both of you.
Ken
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  #85  
Old 03-30-2011, 10:25 AM
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emby emby is offline
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One other thing to note..As Tom, Steve and David discussed what quality fixtures are I think that this would be an excellent round table discussion at next years AOLP Conference. Things to look for when choosing a landscape lighting fixture. Not all are equal that's for sure.
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  #86  
Old 11-28-2011, 02:36 AM
twinsprings twinsprings is offline
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I am planning on using Volt fixtures, as they an obvious value. I will use halogen lamps so I can't help there, but others had a small fit issue that's all. I will purchase the wire and transformer elsewhere to find a similar value as the fixtures. I am pleased a solid brass fixture will fit my budget.
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  #87  
Old 12-11-2011, 10:09 AM
volito volito is offline
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wow!what a thread! I come here occasionally to learn and also started a few threads and also believe got into some debates on this forum because I am a DIYer yes DIYer.

OK I read first four or so pages and figure I give an outside opinion "DIYer". I found this forum because I was in search of a quality landscape lighting product other than the local stores "which are cheap we all know". I also got ridiculed for being a DIYer and maybe even been called cheap! "yes tough crowd here". I respect this is your lively hood but the world is full of DIYer's and probably more then 70% of you do your own work in your homes.

OK I went with volt and still purchasing from them over the last 8 months. First off I went with volt because the other top brands scared me away because of there prices. I never got to see there product not sure if it is that much better "I don't know". Anyways I sure do appreciate volt and there product I personally think there product is 100 times better then what I could of got from any local store. Also if I was to choose from a few if I went with a contractor of course I would go with the cheapest and good quality "form my view" as a home owner. Plus lifetime guarantee what do I have to loose.

Volt been running on my DIYer for 8 months no problems love the quality and customer service! wow! no questions asked replaces things quickly....Yes I got some minor flaws like a stripped stake for example But I used some Teflon tape and didn't even get upset or ask for replacement because I know volt would'v changed it without questions...."as in past"

Ok said enough dont wanna make enemies here a lot of people helped me and I appreciate there help....

still working on pics for people that helped me have to learn photography for good pics lol
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  #88  
Old 12-11-2011, 10:38 AM
volito volito is offline
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Forgot havent used LED's yet but in future use yes ...spots seem to be getting good reviews
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  #89  
Old 12-27-2011, 01:37 PM
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AztlanLC AztlanLC is offline
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I just saw this tread, ok ever since that tread volt came up with a dedicated led light where to my eyes it looks just as good as halogen, pretty good quality as well, they also now sell retrofit led bulbs which I have pretty mix feeling about those, on the path lights tey all look kind of diferent, some white, some warm white, not very impresed with them, the mr16 retrofit looks pretty decent I even used couple of those underwater on my pond, 6 months not a single problem so far, the new undercap light wow I really like this, wish it came in a smaller version tough.
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  #90  
Old 12-30-2011, 10:04 PM
Alan B Alan B is offline
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Thanks for the kind words and feedback.

Updates:
Retro Fit LED Lamps

MR16
-In Jan we will be stocking MR16 LEDs in 20w, 35w and 50w equivalents.
-We are adding 60 degree beam angles to our existing 38 degree beam angle LEDs
Note: we have had virtually zero defects (none that I even know about), returns, failures on our MR16 LEDs that we have had in the field and sold for the last year. The reliability, feedback and closeness of a match to a halogen 20w has been exceptional and exceeded even our expectations.

BiPin (g4)
-The bi pins will have tighter binning (2800-3000K instead of 2800-3200K).

We have a lot more planned and have really listened to our contractors input and feedback. We believe it will be a great year for the industry and look forward to sharing the growth with you in 2012.

Here is to a Happy and Healthy New Year!

Cheers!

Alan
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