Need advice re: display lighting

Discussion in 'Transformers Collection Showcase' started by jbz, Dec 27, 2012.

  1. jbz

    jbz Well-Known Member

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    I have recently set up 2 display cases in a room. One is a Detolf, the other looks like it was previously a store display case with a built in light fixture. The Detolf has no lights currently, the other case has a florescent bulb in. My questions are:

    * what lights do people use in their cases? I've read people like Dioder lights from Ikea, but have read that recently the lighting in it has changed. I found some LEDstixx lights by Sylvania online. They look cool, battery powered so no cables to deal with. Anyone have experience with any of these or other suggestions?

    * what lights are safe to use with toys/figures? Obviously I don't want lights that emit a ton of heat. But I'm not overly familiar with lighting and the rules for this sort of stuff. I'm wondering if my current florescent one is safe and what kind I should get for the Detolf.

    Any advice, information, etc will be appreciated! Thanks guys :D 
     
  2. firehawc_69

    firehawc_69 cloppers = ignore list

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    I think anything LED is a good option. Plenty of light, low power consumption, and little to no heat output.
     
  3. bny888

    bny888 バグバイト

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    Since LED lights are rather bright, can it cause figures' colors to fade?
     
  4. firehawc_69

    firehawc_69 cloppers = ignore list

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    I'm no expert, but I think it's UV radiation that causes discoloration. I don't think that's a concern with LEDs.
     
  5. Sidecutter

    Sidecutter Evil Dealer Scum TFW2005 Supporter

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    UV is a concern with any lighting method. The inherent problem is that, in order to get the best color rendering index (CRI, a percentage scale where a rating of 100 is the same as full sunlight), you need a full-spectrum light with a moderately high color temperature (around 5000K), whatever type it is. This will give the most accurate, vibrant color to whatever you are lighting. The downside to that is, of course, full spectrum lights include at least some measure of UV light, as UV is necessary for colors to be fully realized by the light.

    Frankly, if you're not lighting them constantly, it becomes essentially a non-issue. Short, non-constant exposure to the lights won't cause any issues.

    Now on the types of light...LED is definitely nice for power use, but it can be a real bear to find and affordable LED bulb or unit that puts out good light. The "equivalent to" ratings are grossly inaccurate, which you can see if you actually compare the actual lumen output rating of an LED bulb to a supposedly comparable fluorescent or incandescent. So what you often get is either a VERY large and expensive bulb, or a rather weaker light than the supposed equivalent traditional bulb with LED.

    So far, the best option I have found for the price are fluorescent bulbs, I believe Lowes had them. They're four feet long and have a CRI rating of 92. Not expensive, very long lasting, and they easily fit in cheap hanging, plug-compatible fixtures. That may not work for your displays, but you should, with some looking, be able to find something similar in CFL or smaller fluorescent bulbs.
     
  6. xMostWanted559x

    xMostWanted559x Well-Known Member

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    I'm picking up two more detolfs tomorrow and getting the dioder led lights for it
     
  7. Taziir

    Taziir Well-Known Member

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  8. jbz

    jbz Well-Known Member

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    thanks for that link. I knew a thread like this had to exist, it was just a chore finding it. I like the dioder idea, but the cabling aspect bugs me. My Costco has these battery operated ones with a remote control that you can just stick up. I'm worried about battery life though as I had a cheap one of those for one of my closets and it died rather quickly.
     
  9. jbz

    jbz Well-Known Member

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    Good info Sidecutter, thanks.
     
  10. HomebrewJet

    HomebrewJet Well-Known Member

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    Quality LED does not give off UV thats one of the major reasons breweries and liquor stores are putting them into their breweries and cases, it is better for beer since it wont cause it to get lightstruck (one reason besides energy savings that is)

    I work for an electrical wholesaler and have been thinking of ways that I could light my detlof cases, we have an LED ribbon light that is very thin and dimmable. It is kinda spendy when you have to add drivers and dimming modules, however it would be VERY nice if set up properly.

    Another simple way I have been thinking is with rope light. Just drilling a hole into the case near the shelf holders and tie wrapping the rope light to all of the vertical sections.
     
  11. HomebrewJet

    HomebrewJet Well-Known Member

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    Another cool product that might work really well to add accent lighting to your cases is made by Sylvania it is called Mosaic flexible light kit. Youan change the colors of the LED which would be kinda cool (red for autobot cases etc.) I will see if I can get a picture of one in use and post it.
     
  12. primetime77

    primetime77 Well-Known Member

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    Avoid cfl ... Tons of uv. Go led. They have ones with a warmer color temperature if you don't like too white. Halogens and incandescentl give off too much heat. Led is your answer
     
  13. jbz

    jbz Well-Known Member

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    Pricey? It sounds like a cool idea.
     
  14. HomebrewJet

    HomebrewJet Well-Known Member

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    about $55 I am going to walk down and look at them. I can't remember how long the rope is in the kit.
     
  15. brr-icy

    brr-icy G1 Collector

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  16. Squall42080

    Squall42080 Autobot RSX Type-S

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    I have the Mosaic Flexible Light Kit mentioned by HomebrewJet above. It's pretty awesome. They are thin strips of flexible LEDs that are powered via a conventional outlet, and have a wireless remote control.

    The remote allows you to wirelessly turn the lights on/off, adjust the brightness, change the colors (15 colors to choose from), and set different settings such as color-change, strobe, fade, etc.

    I found the set at Costco for $29.99, which provides you with about 8' of lighting. Online they offer expansion strips and according to the back of the package, you get a discount if you bought the initial starter set at Costco via coupon code on the back of the package.

    I can take pictures later when I get home from work if you'd like.
     
  17. jbz

    jbz Well-Known Member

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    yes, that's what I'm looking for. Wireless remote, LED and affordable. How are the cables? Long enough to cover the whole Detolf? Can hide easily?
     
  18. HomebrewJet

    HomebrewJet Well-Known Member

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    It comes with 5 sections at 2' each. I would LOVE to see the pictures of how you ran it. I bought one today and will be installing it later, and the price you got from Costco is amazing. I paid $50 and that was at dealer cost. DOH!
     
  19. HomebrewJet

    HomebrewJet Well-Known Member

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    Please do take photos. I planned on using one of these for a long time, but we keep selling out. I figured if I cant get it to work in my case, I could use it to backlight my TV a bit
     
  20. Squall42080

    Squall42080 Autobot RSX Type-S

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    OK, I'll take some pics. Keep in mind I only just got it for Christmas, so some of my display will be a mess...and I only have the one kit. Technically, my wife bought me two sets...but at the time, I didn't know you could just buy additional strands without the kit, so I left one sealed to be returned.

    It looks like the additional strands are $14.99 normally, but with the Costco discount, come down to $12.99 (it's a code on the back of the package that I will gladly give to anyone if interested)...at least it's something. I think my set only came with 4 sections, so that is probably the difference in price.

    I love it and highly recommend it. I had a tough time deciding where to mount the lights, but ultimately I'm happy.