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Old 19-12-2013, 17:33   #1
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12V Fluorescent Light Bulbs ?

Has anyone used the "new" 12V fluorescent light bulbs?

Try as I might I can't get the new LED lights to give anything like the cover and softness of a fluorescent, and my local chandler no longer carries the older marine style.

The 12V bulbs look like they'd fit in a standard socket, so a wide range of light fittings could be used.

My main concern is that they may not be anywhere near as efficient as LEDs.
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Old 19-12-2013, 17:46   #2
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Re: 12V Fluorescent light bulbs?

I don't know about fluorescent bulbs, and I have no intention of getting acquainted because LED is *the* way to go these days. Have you tried bulbs from marinebeam? I replaced all of the halogen bulbs on my boat with marinebeam LED replacements and I could not be happier.
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Old 19-12-2013, 18:36   #3
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My boat has a few Alpenglow cfl lights. I recently converted one to LED. Good color and much less draw. You can send the fixture in to have them convert but it is much cheaper to do yourself. Hi and low settings are achieved by wiring the switch to activate one strip for low and two strips for high. The first photo is with cfl. The second is with LED. These lamps already had an LED for the night red light with hi and low.
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Old 19-12-2013, 19:25   #4
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Re: 12V Fluorescent light bulbs?

A few years ago we bought a 12 v cold cathode fluoro "bulb" from Bunnings, along with a five buck bullet type fixture to use as a reading light in our bunk. It works quite well, very good intensity and decent spread so that we can both use it at the same time when reading in bed. It draws a bit less than one amp, so not as efficient as LED, but dirt cheap and very bright. So, we went back to get a few more and they had discontinued them... I just hate it when that happens! Don't remember the brand name, but it looks like the ones in Borocay's link (spiral shape). Been used a lot of hours, no noticeable diminution of output. I wonder if they are available again here in Oz? IIRC the bloke at Bunnings said something about hazards of plugging one into a mains fixture since the plug/socket is the same, but I'm not sure 'bout that.

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Old 19-12-2013, 19:51   #5
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Re: 12V Fluorescent light bulbs?

Big 10-4 on the Marine Beam.


I have several of their PWM LED lights on board and they are great. I installed these replacement festoon surface mounts including in the backspace behind the nav station in the wire chase. I CAN SEE. I also bought their nav light replacement bulbs and the spreader lights. "SOLO"


LED Fluorescent Replacements 12V and 24V
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Old 19-12-2013, 20:21   #6
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Re: 12V Fluorescent light bulbs?

I'm curious because they look cheap, particularly the ones on ebay. (Not the ones from China that take forever to arrive but the Hong Kong ones.)

And being able to use standard lamp fittings is another big plus for me.

Maybe it is just me but I find that the LEDs that are bright enough are directional and glare while the ones that don't are not bright enough.
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Old 19-12-2013, 20:40   #7
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Re: 12V Fluorescent light bulbs?

I've experimented with a few different LEDs like the highly recommended Sensibulb and a few others. Found them to be very expensive and not very bright. Finally tried these High Power LED Flexible Light Strip - NFLS-X3 | Top Emitting | Flexible LED Light Strips | LED Light Strips & Bars | Super Bright LEDs after another CF member recommended them.

USD $16 for a 19" strip they are very bright and draw about 0.6 amps. I found the natural white slightly too blue and the warm white a little too yellow so mix one of each and am happy with the color. Compared to the old fluorescent fixture two LED strips are brighter, better color and draw 1.2 amps vs 0.8 amps for the fluorescent.

Only been using they for a few weeks so can't comment about longevity but for the price, if they die in a couple of years I'll just buy more.

The company sends them by US mail so shipping is very cheap. Bet they would even mail some to Oz.
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Old 20-12-2013, 11:13   #8
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I've refitted most of the old 12V flourecent fixtures on my boat with LED light bars. Just by passed or removed the old flourecent related electronics and secured the light bar in the fixture.

Have not actually compared with a light meter, but brightness seems the same to me. Have used same product in my house (off grid, 12V) for almost 5 years. Never a failure or problem on boat or at house.

https://www.superbrightleds.com/more...xture/680/464/
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Old 20-12-2013, 16:18   #9
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Re: 12V Fluorescent light bulbs?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Boracay View Post
I'm curious because they look cheap, particularly the ones on ebay. (Not the ones from China that take forever to arrive but the Hong Kong ones.)

And being able to use standard lamp fittings is another big plus for me.

Maybe it is just me but I find that the LEDs that are bright enough are directional and glare while the ones that don't are not bright enough.
The Marine Beams pictured above are anything but cheap and the surface mount LED are not directional. Its quite a stout assembly. If there is a diffuser on the fixture I think you will be satisfied. BTW, the light is sufficient that one bulb in a two light fixture is plenty.
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Old 20-12-2013, 17:32   #10
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Re: 12V Fluorescent Light Bulbs ?

I've been using the TaylorBright Cold Cathode Fluorescent lamps for several years and I'm very happy with them. I use the "warm white" color temperature units. I have them everywhere for general lighting needs: galley overheads, dining area, cabins, engine room. I am currently looking at the latest LED bunk lights and nav table lamps. The flourescents are very bright (I have the two-position models usually set high), and at 80 lumens per watt, they give me a big bang for my amp hour investment.
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Old 20-12-2013, 18:17   #11
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Re: 12V Fluorescent Light Bulbs ?

It would be interesting to know if they cause the same Buzzing on 27meg radios that traditional Flouros do.
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Old 22-12-2013, 09:36   #12
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Re: 12V Fluorescent Light Bulbs ?

I bought 10 Marine Beam LED replacement lights for about $100 including shipping - far from expensive. In spite of their low cost, they are anything but "cheap" - they looked very robust. Last, but certainly not least, they are at least as bright, and actually I would say brighter than the halogen bulbs they replaced. Furthermore the light coming from them fills the entire cabin better than the halogen bulbs - they are certainly not just a narrow beam or a bunch of dots. I can't even tell that there are multiple emitters on each "bulb".
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