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Author Topic: Interior lighting  (Read 3536 times)
Chaz
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« on: January 10, 2007, 01:15:37 PM »

Ok........... what I have planned is using a Zantrex 4024 MC inverter in my baby. I know the cost is waaaay outta line, but I like the idea of it being a little more simple to use and not have to "mind" things. (sorry, I just would rarther not have to think about such things........... I'm blonde!)   Undecided
  So my question is: it seems that with an inverter like that, "everything" runs thru it so it wouldn't matter if I use a 110v light or a 12v light. It all goes thru it. But which voltage uses less "juice" for the light given off? Or what should I be looking for in lights to be able to be effecient with my "juice"?  (maybe I'm way off base, I dunno)  LEDs seem to be the hot ticket, but what about conventional or halogen lights?
  I like the "rope lights" for ambiance, but they don't put out allot of light.
  I'm open for any and all suggestions and hopefully this will help others!

   Wanting to do it right,
            Chaz
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What I create here:   www.amstudio.us
 
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Chariotdriver
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« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2007, 01:30:56 PM »

 Chaz,
    I've been doing some research regarding LED lighting and the longevity of them as compared to Halogen etc.
 I do know that the lights are purported to last 100,000 hours, cost very little, now have UltraBright White lights availible, produce  to very little heat.
   An I think that they are failry cheap.
 I would go with LED if I were to do it my self and may do that, if and when I get a bus. Sad
 
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Phil Webb
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TomC
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« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2007, 03:53:18 PM »

Chaz-  It is always more efficient to have the lights directly powered from the power source.  If you are using 120v lighting going through the inverter, there will always be close to a 10% effiecency loss, just because of the nature of the inverter.  Personally, the only 120v lighting I have is on the stove hood (it is a home type), and two lamps on the side tables next to the bed.  All else is 12v.  I have 20 watt halogen puck surface mount lights in front.  Three of them I switched to 10 wattt Xenon there is very little difference in the brightness between the two.  Also have a flourescent in the kitchen and bedroom, with normal 12v incendescent lights (read automotive lights) fixtures in the bath and spot reading lights at seating areas (8 total-minature spots available through Camping World).  Am pleased with the light output.  12v lighting is very effiecient and cheap.  Good Luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
David Anderson
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« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2007, 06:03:49 PM »

Tom is correct on the efficiency loss, and the inverter manual should state as such.  I've read here many times that it is done both ways.  Some don't care to mess with 12v and run all 120v.  Others want the efficiency and use as much 12v as practical.  I opted for all 12v except over the bath vanity.  We do a lot of dry camping, so that factored into my decision. 

I know nothing about LED.s, so I'll defer to someone else.

Good Luck,
David

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buswarrior
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« Reply #4 on: January 10, 2007, 08:34:40 PM »

Hello Chaz.

I might suggest a mixture of lighting for the sake of redundancy.

The loss of inverter functioning won't leave you completely in the dark, and the potential for lots of bright lighting when it is working.

I am very happy with my stock in-station 120v flourescent lighting in the ceiling of my MC8, and do not plan to ever be without some variation as the conversion evolves. As bright as an office, front to rear, if I choose to turn them on via Trace 4024 inverter power. Lots of 12 volt incandescent fixtures as well.

happy coaching!
buswarrior
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pvcces
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« Reply #5 on: January 10, 2007, 10:48:31 PM »

New 24 volt ballasts are nearly as cheap as 120 volt ones. We have 12 volt units that came from transits, and it is no problem to light up our entire coach, if we want, and it doesn't take much power.

As a general rule, DC equipment isn't nearly as wasteful as AC equipment, and I second Buswarrior's point of view. What if the inverter quits?

Good luck on your choices.

Tom Caffrey
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Tom Caffrey PD4106-2576
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Jerry Liebler
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« Reply #6 on: January 11, 2007, 09:51:20 AM »

Chaz,
     I'd avoid 120 volt lighting because it requires more energy from the battery because the inverter is not 100% efficient.  Whether to use 12 or 24 volt lighting is another topic.  You'll no doubt need some 12 volt stuff, fantastic fans for instance aren't available in 24 volt, this being the case I'd opt for an equalizer and tapped house battery to power the 12 volt stuff.  The smallest equaliser is big enough that one could use almost all 12 volt apliances and lighting.  Bigger loads like a Webasto or low voltage refrigerator would be most efficient on the 24 volt house system.  The most efficient low voltage lighting is LEDs so use them wherever you can, next best is flourescent and these are available much more economically in 12 volt so use them where you can.  Rope lights and Hologen bulbs are power hogs so use them only where needed. 
Regards
Jerry 4107 1120
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Chaz
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« Reply #7 on: January 11, 2007, 10:06:10 AM »

Thanx folks!!! And especially you Jerry. I am starting to get the feel of what to do. Now I can start planning how i want to do the lighting.

  The next step is FINDING the good stuff!!!  Smiley 

    Enlightened,
      Chaz
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Pix of my bus here: http://s58.photobucket.com/albums/g279/Skulptor/Motor%20Coach/
What I create here:   www.amstudio.us
 
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Stan
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« Reply #8 on: January 11, 2007, 12:33:03 PM »

Very reliable, long life 12 volt lighting is to use medium screw 12 volt bulbs (the kind you use in 12 volt trouble llights). RV stores sell them in 15, 25 and 50 watt size and you have the choice of all the home style 120 volt fixtures. Certainly not the most energy effiecient but you can get very nice fixtures in a lot better quality than the usual RV light fixtures.  A 25 watt bulb in a bullet type fixture over the easy chairs make nice reading lights. The bulbs run cool and seem to last forever.
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captain ron
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« Reply #9 on: January 11, 2007, 02:23:33 PM »

I went all 110 volt and am very pleased with it. only had to do without lights a couple times and that was my own fault. I can go 4 to 5 days with fridge running using rope lights and halogens when I first got batteries but now only 2. When I replace batteries I will have a massive bank and an alternator to keep charged when on the road. should never be without power unless inverter takes a dump. By the way that 5000 watt inverter I bought off ebay has been great been in service for 2 years
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ChuckMC9
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« Reply #10 on: January 11, 2007, 06:17:22 PM »

By the way that 5000 watt inverter I bought off ebay has been great been in service for 2 years
That was the Aims - right, CR? Seems like that's what I remember...
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captain ron
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« Reply #11 on: January 11, 2007, 08:46:40 PM »

Good memory Chuck, it is an aims. I would like to find the remote switch for it so I can turn it on and off from inside the bus.
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Dallas
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« Reply #12 on: January 12, 2007, 03:43:41 AM »

Good memory Chuck, it is an aims. I would like to find the remote switch for it so I can turn it on and off from inside the bus.

Ron,

If your inverter has the remote connection that looks like a Netwrk card RJ45 jack or a big RJ11 telephone jack, I think I have the wiring diagram and spec sheet to make your own remote.

If anyone wants it, I can post it somewhere.

IHTH
Dallas
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captain ron
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« Reply #13 on: January 12, 2007, 07:28:23 AM »

go for it Dallas. But you might want to start it's own thread as not to hijack Chaz's thread. Mine has the great big phone jack looking connection
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Gary '79 5C
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« Reply #14 on: January 14, 2007, 12:18:57 PM »

I believe that your inverter is a 24 volt input, so how do you deliver 12 volts if the house batts are connected in a 24 volt configuration ??
Always wanted to ask, never did till now.

I am running a 2000 Watt Xantrex with a 12 Volt house batt input. I have no problems and have mostly 12Volt lighting. If only I can correct the drain the Webasto heater has I will be in phat city. I need to shut off the 12V feed to the heater, otherwise the house batts drain down. No big deal but needs to be corrected.

My 2 cents.
Gary Pasternak
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captain ron
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« Reply #15 on: January 14, 2007, 01:22:52 PM »

If your talking about my inverter it's 12 volt
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