ON THE RIGHT TRACK

I just worked with a client who has track throughout his office space from the 1980’s. Rather than replacing it all with new lighting, we decided to freshen up the existing track with new fixtures that are (A) more attractive, (B) more efficient and (C) most importantly, good looking.

All tracks look more or less the same on the surface – but they are very different on the inside (check out the photo).

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Before you run out to buy new fixtures for your existing track, you need to look at the style of the track to make sure the fixture you select will actually fit when you snap it in. Look at these fittings. These are what you’ll see on the very top of a track fixture. They are each different.

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This job is a perfect scenario.

Here’s my client’s fixture. The top of the fixture where it snaps into the track is clearly the same as the “J-Style” in the above photograph.

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I know “J-Style” fixtures will fit in the existing track.

The “J-Style” track is in my client’s lobby. Now, in his hallway, the track is from another company with an “H-Style.” Again, the top design of the fixture is the same as the “H-Style” in the photo above.

So, what we have are two different styles of track but we want to install fixtures that all look the same, for visual continuity.

Thanks to product from WAC Lighting, we were able to select an affordable fixture that can be supplied in any configuration of track available.

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We removed the halogen bulb it came with and replaced it with an energy efficient LED bulb that will last 30,000 hours and use only 6.5 watts. (instead of 2,000 hours and 50 watts which is the life and wattage of the halogen bulb).

Now, for less than $500.00, and without the need for an electrician, his tracks look brand new and he can send his old 1980’s style fixtures to the Smithsonian, where they belong. This is a great DIY project for anyone.

Do you have track lighting in your home? Are your fixtures old and out of date? This is a great way to update your home without spending money for an electrician. Let me know what you think.

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BE PREPARED!

I met a client after she had already had built soffits for recessed lighting intended to go around the edges of her kitchen and over her sink. Not taking into account the amount of space she’d need above the ceiling line to install a standard recessed fixture, she made them 3” deep. OOPS, that ruled out nearly every single standard recessed option on the market for her. A standard recessed fixture requires at least 4” of clearance, sometimes more.

BE PREPARED: When you’re shopping for lighting make sure you have room to install what you like, make sure whatever you put on your ceiling clears obstacles such as cabinet doors swinging open, make sure you have the proper dimmers for the product. All of these considerations are important when selecting your lighting because one mistake can create a problem.

I met a client after she had already had built soffits for recessed lighting intended to go around the edges of her kitchen and over her sink. Not taking into account the amount of space she’d need above the ceiling line to install a standard recessed fixture, she made them 3” deep. OOPS, that ruled out nearly every single standard recessed option on the market for her. A standard recessed fixture requires at least 4” of clearance, sometimes more.

A soffit with a 3” clearance can only be solved with items that are low enough in profile to fit inside. These are options you would not find in a standard home improvement store. They’re usually more expensive and require special wires for dimming. For my client, she had electrical wiring already in place so I went with a product that would not only be low profile for the shallow soffit but would be easy to dim.

DMF Lighting’s, “DRD2” LED module is designed to fit in standard electrical boxes with the white finishing trim snapping over the top, making it look and perform like a recessed can – just without the can.DMF

These are more expensive than the standard variety recessed fixture but she now has a fixture with the finest LED technology on the market. It’s easy to dim, it lasts more than 50,000 hours and has a 5 year warranty. Best of all, it helps correct the mistake that originally occurred by not being prepared when building the soffit.

 

DADDY, DADDY! THE BULB FOR MY EASY-BAKE OVEN IS ILLEGAL!!!!!!!

YEAH, YEAH – REGULAR LIGHT BULBS ARE NOW A THING OF THE PAST (Or ARE they???)

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Here’s a way around the pesky light bulb ban that keeps you from using a 100W bulb.
If you’re looking for a standard incandescent light bulb (A19) in the old wattage (25, 40. 60 or 100 watts) you can still get them as long as they’re a “Rough Service”.
What’s a “rough service” bulb? It’s a regular style bulb with a heavy internal filament. They last longer than regular bulbs and are designed to handle vibration. They’re generally used in elevators, utility rooms, garage door openers and other applications where the challenging conditions would otherwise kill a regular bulb.
LED and fluorescent light sources are great ways to create a more energy efficient home. But every now and then a regular light bulb is exactly what we need and require for our personal use.
So before you throw out your kid’s Easy-Bake Oven because you can’t score a 100 watt bulb, ask for (or special order) rough service bulbs. The new ban does not effect this style of light bulb.
Let the baking begin!!!

CELEBRITY LIGHTING

In the world of lighting there are numerous designs that are classics in the industry. Few come close to this Italian desk lamp, the most famous of them all.

The Tizio by the Italian Lighting Manufacturer Artemide.

Designed by Richard Sapper in 1972, this table lamp has saved the aging eyes of countless people all over the world!!! 40 years later, with hardly a single change in the design, the Tizio remains one of the finest examples of how function can become a true work of art. In fact, it’s on display in the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in Manhattan.

I have specified this lamp countless times for bedside reading and desks and have used them in my home. It’s one of the few halogen lamps still on the market, with a high and low switch built into the base for easy access.

You can buy the Tizio as well as other Artemide products at a great price at WNL Lighting, in NYC (212) 594-3246.

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The Joy of LED

LEDs (Light Emitting Diodes) are changing the way we light our home and business. Some of the new LED products on the market today go far beyond anything we have ever seen before. For instance, check out this lighting system from Pure/Edge Lighting, a Chicago based manufacturer of cutting edge LED lighting.

The Softline series of LED strips provide incredible illumination efficiently and beautifully. Pure/Edge makes a wide range of hardware for their LED strips, including this aluminum strip that stretches across rooms, shining light indirectly. With the color changing LEDs (RGB) the possibilities are endless with over 1 million color ranges.

Over the years I have specified Pure/Edge Lighting for my upscale, contemporary projects. This is just one of many lighting concepts they’ve developed over the years. I’m all a fan of their Twiggy vanity series as well as the Millwork built in strips.

http://www.edgelighting.com

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Allow me to introduce myself..

My name is John Gibson-Whitley and I have been in the lighting industry for over 26 years. During that time I’ve had the chance to help countless people illuminate their homes, offices, retail stores, recording studios, dollhouses  – you name it.

From recessed lighting to decorative European lamps – from old edison bulbs to LED technology, this weekly blog will feature my thoughts on how successful lighting works in both function and aesthetic. It’s my way to reach beyond my local community in San Diego, improve my communication skills, using my lighting knowledge to help people make a little more sense out of what they choose to use for their space.

Please join me for a weekly journey that will hopefully be informative, enjoyable and most of all (I’m going to say it!) enlightening.