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lighting columns

Discussion in 'Landscape Lighting' started by maxwilbryan, Feb 15, 2010.

  1. maxwilbryan

    maxwilbryan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 78

    We did the lighting (landscaping, irrigation as well) last winter. Owner was over budget. He wasnt willing to pay the extra $ to light the columns at the time. The job turned out really nice. Im currently lining up a photographer to compile a portfolio of our lighting jobs as we look to market this side of our business. Im going to ask the owner if i can light the columns to take some photos. I'm just going to light them from the bottom for the sake of the image.
    He will probably ask me to give him a proposal for going through with the install. I would at least like to be prepared to talk it over.
    What type of fixtures would you guys recommend? And any install advise would be greatly appreciated.
    And now that i look at it- i guess that front would look kinda cool with some mr-11s angled on the fascia of the center gable... Thanks so much. -max


  2. Pro-Scapes

    Pro-Scapes LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,180

    From the looks of the photo the railing for the front steps ends in the center colums.

    I wouldn't try to uplight these. I would use a lightolier recess light installed in the soffit as this would not only light the colums but also help light the steps as well. If the rest of the home is uplit it might look balanced if you place an uplight on each side to catch the sofit too but, this would be based on clients desires and easily added later.

    That is a fairly small pediment so be careful when lighting it or it will apear to be way to hot compared to the rest.

    Is the balance of the home and landscape lit now ? All I see is a small pathlight.
  3. maxwilbryan

    maxwilbryan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 78

    Thanks for the reply Billy. Yes, balance is cool. I'm happy (and owner is too) with everything. There are 10 or so fixtures along the front. Two paths, a couple par 36 halogen wells, and mr-16BABs w/ frosted lenses.

    Im afraid recessed lights in this situation will show the source from the street because of the house being high on a hill (look at it from 1st photo). Dont you think? Maybe I'm being too anal here so correct me if its no big deal. I'm considering Halogen AR-11 20w at the top of each column.How would I hide the wires if i chose this route? Would you run white 12g wire behind gutter then running white 16g along front and placing connections in mini jboxes on top of each column...? This is a step up on the difficulty scale for me. So again, I greatly appreciate the advice. -max
  4. Pro-Scapes

    Pro-Scapes LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,180

    No the recessed lights would not show the source if you use the proper fixture. The lamp in the right fixture would be regressed deep inside the can and trim so there would be no glare unless you were laying on the ground directly under the face of the pillars. I have often thought the ones I have installed in the past were burned out only to be surprised just how far under them you need to be to see the lamp. No hot spot... No glare. PERFECT for this application.

    Lightolier... 2000LVR... with the keyhole slotted trim... I can't recall the trim number right now...its 2006 trim I think. This fixture takes a 12v mr 16 lamp but is wired in 120v as the transformer is integral to the fixture. The wire would be in the attic and soffit so an EC would be required.

    Thats an awfully big home for only 10 fixtures. We just completed one a bit smaller and it was over 35 fixtures but then again we did the remote beds etc.

    Do you have a night time photo of this ?
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2010
  5. maxwilbryan

    maxwilbryan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 78

    I've never taken photos bc to me it looked unfinished w/o the columns lit. There are more than ten fixtures on the property. I was just refering to the front of the house. Like you said the rail meets the inside column so I knew I couldn't uplight them. I was to green a year ago to have the know-how and confidence to sell the downlite option. We had a lot going on so I was happy to do it right in a later phase. FYI The total job consistsed of 23 lights including the back. I'll get some night pics soon. Ill look into the product you mentioned. Ty
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  6. Lite4

    Lite4 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,173

    You are going to mount a surface fixture on top of the columns and your worried about a recessed can light? Not sure I get it. If you are worried about glare put a hex louver in it and you are good to go.
  7. Lite4

    Lite4 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,173

    Oh man, after looking at your pictures you have it made. Just run your home run wire up the downspout to the upper gutter. pop your lead wires into the soffit behind the gutter, cut in your LV cans, wire em up at the hub and fixtures and your good to go. Easy install and you won't see a single wire.
  8. RLI Electric

    RLI Electric LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 381

    Tim, I am assuming a low voltage home run is what you are talking about. If you are still using the Lightolier cans, would you bypass the transformer on the can and just tie directly to the secondary side leads?
  9. Pro-Scapes

    Pro-Scapes LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,180

    You can bypass the transformer on the lightoliers and connect your low voltage wire if need be but I preffer to run them with romex in the attic. I then control them via UPB or an AUBE timer from there. Often times there are recessed or some type of light already on the porch of a home like this so simply tie into there then control the whole section. This really can enhance your overall apperance. It is important to include any 120v fixtures the client uses regularly into your design.

    Max since you are most likley insured as a landscaper and not an electrician this is out of your element. You can obtain and specify the locations and lamps on this but in most areas an EC will have to install anything inside.

    I too was reffering to the number of fixtures in the front of your job. I would have personally had considerably more fixtures and placed them as such that it wouldnt be over lit.
  10. TXNSLighting

    TXNSLighting LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Messages: 6,464

    yeh 23 for the whole property is WAY low. I could have 45 up front alone. It would be nice to see a night time shot of the home. And i take it the well lights are probably in the mulch right? Be careful with that if so. Thats a fire hazard.

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