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Old 04-28-2004, 09:59 AM   #1
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Replace those Ugly Lights!

Has anyone else noticed that the "usual" RV lights are way past plastic ugly? Here is an easy solution. At you local supply store, buy the low voltage (12 vdc) lights that are either track or other that have a "built in" transformer.

Take the back cover off the light, bypass the transformer, and voila, a new high class beautiful 12 vdc light! I have done this with both the track lights and the ones that are not track lights.

Another alternative, is that the standard screw bulbs are available as 12 volt in several wattages. This gives you the option of almost any light fixture.

Cheers,

IdahoHanson
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Old 04-29-2004, 09:22 AM   #2
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I think this thread might be in the wrong place. Yes I covet those 12 volt lights- very elegant, but expensive. Can anyone come up with a less expensive way to make the track? Lamps can be bought seperately.

Also sailorsam's.com (I hope I spelled it right this time) has very nice brass and chrome lights. silver suz
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Old 11-08-2004, 06:23 PM   #3
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12-volt track lighting

Thanks IdahoHanson. I so totally agree! We're restoraing a 1970 AS Overlander for a TV series called "Classic Rides". I've bought the low-voltage LitesNow (www.litesnow.com) instant track lighting for some areas and Juno Track 12 (www.junolighting.com) for some other areas. These can be hard-wired to the 12-volt, bypassing the transformer that you'd normally use for residential installations. Lites now also has track lighting that simply plugs into AC outlets.
When you say that you can put 12 volt bulbs in ordinary light fixtures, what do you mean?
Also, do you know about regular fluorescent lights? I'd love to find a better bathroom light - the RV ones are ugly!

Quote:
Originally Posted by idahohanson
Has anyone else noticed that the "usual" RV lights are way past plastic ugly? Here is an easy solution. At you local supply store, buy the low voltage (12 vdc) lights that are either track or other that have a "built in" transformer.

Take the back cover off the light, bypass the transformer, and voila, a new high class beautiful 12 vdc light! I have done this with both the track lights and the ones that are not track lights.

Another alternative, is that the standard screw bulbs are available as 12 volt in several wattages. This gives you the option of almost any light fixture.

Cheers,

IdahoHanson
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Old 11-08-2004, 09:41 PM   #4
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Realgoods.com is now selling led lightbulbs- made to fit into regular sockets. Cool white and "pink". also leds to make your own lights, silver suz
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Old 11-08-2004, 10:35 PM   #5
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The trouble with track lights in an Airstream is the clearance to the ceiling.
Most of the track fixtures are too large to not hit your head on them.
It also puts a heat source close to your head. Plus, the vibration and pounding while towing would surely make short life of the track fixtures.
I would opt for low voltage recessed lights, or surface mount shallow lights instead. This source has a good selection, many of which can be found on very high end installations. www.swego.com
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Old 11-09-2004, 12:02 AM   #6
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Another alternative

A friend just sent me a link for Alpenglow Lights. They appear to cater mainly to the wood-interior boat trade.

They have some very nice looking and efficient fluorescents that have the same color balance as incandescents.

One neat feature they offer: if you want to match a particular wood and finish, you can send them the material and they'll make your lights out of it!

Bob
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Old 11-09-2004, 09:08 AM   #7
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Gustafson

Found that CW carries a line of 12-volt RV fixtures put out by Gustafson that comes in several different styles, and is offered in polished brass or brushed nickel. Picked up some of the latter, and I could not be more pleased with them.
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Old 06-15-2005, 09:41 AM   #8
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Dave, what is CW that you mentioned carries these lights?
thanks
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Old 06-15-2005, 09:49 AM   #9
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albert;

Are you asking what is CW? If so. that is the common abbreviation for Camping World. They are everywhere- including on the web.
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Old 06-15-2005, 10:14 AM   #10
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lights

Duh, I knew that, with all of the abbreviations out there, that one slipped my mind for a second. My bad. Thanks for replying!
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Old 06-15-2005, 10:31 AM   #11
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Be very careful bypassing those transformers.
When you bypass the transformer, 10 times the current will be passing thru the wiring that used to feed the primary. The original AC 120 VAC wiring is not large enough to carry that much current. Four 50watt bulbs is almost 17 amps.
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Old 06-15-2005, 10:31 AM   #12
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Cool Lights, cheap

I bought my lights at IKEA and they have loads of 12V options. Cool stuff that fits the look of Airstreams IMHO.

I've had a set of cable lights in my 65 GT which got some oohs-and-ahhs at woodstock last year. Works for me, except you have to make sure to take the bulbs out while towing. Bounces around a little and shakes them free.

D
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Old 06-15-2005, 12:10 PM   #13
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We used a lot of 12v halogen lighting inProject Vintage Thunder. They are great! They only problem is that the power draw is so huge that we have to use fluorescents when boondocking.

Also, with all 11 halogens on at once, the trailer actually warms up a bit. That's handy on cool evenings -- sort of a low-level space heater when it is running in the upper 50s.
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Old 06-15-2005, 08:40 PM   #14
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Talking Try Lowes

We just bought two new "gooseneck" lights from Lowes. They are 12 volt and nickel in color. They are not in the regular lighting section, but in the halogen bulb area. Several types. We wanted gooseneck so we could focus the lighting where we needed it (i.e. needlework, reading etc.)
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