Bulbs are weird
AkioOhtori last edited by AkioOhtori
So... I was going to do a callout on Oppo to help me identify a bulb, this bulb to be specific:
But I ended up finding it.
But it was weird journey to get there, so now you get to share it with me (and tell me if I reached the wrong conclusion).
Ok. The bulb in question is a 120V LED bulb attached to the illumination block of a cheap control pushbutton. The entire system I'm working on is controlled by 12V, and while I could put in interposing relays to make the 120V bulbs work, I'd rather not. So I need two green and two red of these bulbs in 12V LED form. Should be easy.... right? While I was quite sure I'd seen these bulbs before, they had no markings on the outside to indicate what I needed to search to find LED versions.
So the hunt was on.
After unsuccessfully searching for "flashlight bulb" and "dome light bulb" I remembered the whole reason I bought this particular
cheap Chinese knockoffbudget control box was because it seemed to be using standard control contact blocks, whereas a lot of the even cheaper ones were using... whatever they felt like. It would therefore stand to reason the bulbs in this indicator block were the same as a "normal" one. I hopped on my favorite controls supplier website, scrolled down to the replacement indicator section, and HOORAY! Bulbs! They looked right and the dimensions seemed to match so... solid.
Crap. They only have 6V (WAT?), 24V, and 120/240V. I guess 12V is a weird(ish) control voltage so... here we are.
Ok while that was a bust it did give me a size: T31/4. Odd, but OK.
I threw that at amazon and got... some results. Turns out it is a T3-1/4. Ok. Still not great results, especially for the green (got a smattering of red). Also while a T3-1/4 bulb is a bayonette, the T3 bulb is not, which complicates matters when the search tries to "help".
So... obviously I need to throw a wider net.
Note: Anyone actually following along at home will notice I missed the signs of the final answer in several spots, but hindsight is bullshit.
Google led me down the same frustrating path, but eventually I got to this product, also somehow on Amazon, but they didn't have green! But they do have a website!
Ok, popping over to their website I select my voltage application and... SUCCESS!
Red and green! Ok cool. Kinda expensive, but worth it for this to be over.
What is this about a "BA9s" base? The base is all I care about... right?
Back to amazon and just look at all those results.
Turns out what I really needed was a BA9s base. The T3-1/4 appears to be an indicator of bulb shape, not base, which is why I was having so much trouble?
So yeah, looking back (primarily to write this) there were a lot of signs this was the case, but I latched onto the T3-1/4 and wouldn't let go. Also, turns out after like 140 years of making bulbs we have just a whole ton of bases and bulb shapes all named super random things and... heh.
Anyway, thank you for coming to my Ted Talk.
@akioohtori That reminds me that I need to go and find all the bulbs I want to replace on the cruiser. All most all my interior lights are dead and the ones that aren't are weak sauce. I need to find some warm colored LED's that don't suck.
facw last edited by
@akioohtori Yeah, bulb standards are not exactly user friendly...
Urambo Tauro last edited by
@akioohtori Weird bulb identification is like searching for Isla de Muerta: It cannot be found except by those who already know where it is
EssExTee last edited by EssExTee
@akioohtori I agree there's too many types of bulbs. I had to replace the instrument bulbs on my Super Cub and it is HARD to find 6v bulbs. I ended up having to buy a whole kit specifically made for the bike just to replace two bulbs because there was no single bulbs anywhere in the spec I needed.
AkioOhtori last edited by
@hammerheadfistpunch I've had good luck upgrading mine in some of the cars. The warm white bulbs are hard to find, but worth it. Only problem I've had is most are BRIGHT, which can be good or bad depending on the application. The Rover got LEDs everywhere I could put them and it is awesome, the Jag only on the puddle and trunks lights. Also sometimes the bulb manufacturers fudge sizes so they can fit multiple sockets and you end up having to bend contacts.
@akioohtori Thats why I want to be careful. Bright is fine in all locations, especially the map light which is basically a firefly in a jar, but I don't want a really blue color.
AkioOhtori last edited by
@hammerheadfistpunch Good man. I don't understand the people who are OK with the 5000K (or whatever) color temperature LEDs. Looking back on my orders, looks like I primarily buy 3000K LEDs, which they describe as "warm white" but I'd actually call neutral white. They're not blue, but they're not (very) yellow either. Fine with me, but in a perfect world I think I'd prefer 2700K.
@akioohtori 2700 is what I'm aiming for, a nice tunsten bulb
DipodomysDeserti last edited by
@hammerheadfistpunch You could try painting the bulbs with yellow lens paint. Haven't tried it myself, but it might work if you lay on a few coats on the bulb and inside the light covers. Not sure if yours takes the same bulbs, but I picked up some high quality, and cheap, Hella LED's from Rock Auto. They've since up'd the price a bit, but still cheaper than Amazon.
@dipodomysdeserti hella cheap? Nice.
gmporschenut also a fan of hondas last edited by
@akioohtori said in Bulbs are weird:
another option is digikey. Can be a pain in the ass, as they offer so many options trying to filter out to what you neeed.
VincentMalamute last edited by
@akioohtori You reminded me that I knew about the separate descriptors for bulb size and base type for some reason I forget. I also forgot I knew this at one point.
WTH uses 120V bulbs in a 12V system?! And why?!
Jawzx2 last edited by
@facw I think the only thing that's nearly annoying as bulbs is hydraulic quick couplers... Here on the farm we're used to 1/2" body ISO (Pioneer) couplers... But if it's not a 1/2" ISO, god help you. Identifying it correctly and locating a matching part could take a week of your time... Is it ISO, or a nearly identical metric part? Which profile? Is it on a John Deere or a Massey or New Holland product, because that can make a difference... Is it a flat front, or a ball or a poppet or a connect under pressure? Was it made prior to 1975 or after 2006, or one of the "experimental" years... Is it even worth your time and effort to match the coupler or do you just strip out the old unknown parts entirely and replace them with a new set? Does a new set come in a mounting style that fits the available space? Do you just fab some new mounts? Do you have to use a stack of 3 adapters to go from the non-standard (well, standard, but unusual) pipe on the machine to the new couplers? How many hundred dollars and hours of my time is this going to cost anyway?