Doug, great suggestion for the Habitat resellers...given me enough time, I would have made it there...eventually. I'm going to check them out for sure. Thanks for your memory jog help. I've been looking through the big box stores -- they're even wanting 30 bucks for shop lights.
What kinds of places would be good for dumpster diving lighting...lol. I sure miss not being around architectural salvage places, they always had prizes to buy.
It occurs to me this might be a good Free Cycle thing. Not sure how active they are in your area, but it's worth looking up. They have an area where people can ask for what they need, with a limit of how often one can ask to keep things manageable
. Free Cycle is a great way to find homes for stuff too good to throw out, but too much hassle to take to a thrift store. Plus things go directly to those that need it.
I would think wanting a shop light to help grow seeds for a garden, would be something a person would be more likely to reply to, than the " I need a hot tub" requests.Yes, I've seen those.
Shop lights are something a person might have replaced with better fixtures, but kept stored for 'just in case someone needs it someday'. At least it would be for me.
Actually, RC, we have found out that the spiral CFLs put out more light than the shop tubes! Not as spread out of course, but if you get the aluminum venting it is like a mirror and the light bounces and bounces all over. We came home tonight in the dark tonight and it looked as though a flying saucer was taking off out of our dining room, with only three of these two foot lamps!
Robin, we cut the threaded rod to 14 inches to spread the venting. They do come in 12 inch. Here's a pic, hopefully one at a time will behave:
And they appear to illuminate four feet, though longer pipe would help that. We are making a double-wide now, and will put in two double fixtures, just because we can lol. The tomatoes took OFF as soon as I put them under one of these. We did pull a fiddle on the ceiling light fixtures to convert them to our hoop-house lights, and to take advantage of the threaded rod on the fixture meant for attaching the lens/shade.
Good stuff Turtles, thanks for your frugal/efficient design. The threaded rod not only spaces the vent pipe but provides some stability for it too. A couple more questions though, lol (I'm pretty sure these will be the last ones);
What is used for the vent pipe hanging apparatus and the mechanism/method used to raise and lower the lights for ranging seedling heights?
Oops, I forgot that part. And yes about the threaded rod - its double duty means not buying extra parts! Although I will warn you that these do twist some when being handled. I don't see it having any negative impact so I don't worry.
The reason we use longer than 12" rod is so that an inch extends outside the vent on each side, and the acorn nuts protect our delicate skin, lol. Those acorn nuts are the most expensive piece, strangely enough.
Then we just used cord or wire of whatever kind is lying around to tie over the tops of the shelves above. I find the thicker or stiffer ones to be better We knot and tie the two ends of one long cord to the back side rods, pass the resulting loop over the the top of the shelf. We pretty much just loop around the front side rods a couple of times.
The cool part is that binder clips work perfectly to hold the cord loops in front, so no knots to untie when it's time to change the height. Plus, this design allows me to roll the whole lamp hood back when I want to get to the plants beneath.
Probably the lowest tech part of the operation! Next comes the double for the top shelf, which will need some other kind of thing. Don't have it figured out yet, but I'll let you know when that happens, in case you don't have a shelf setup like mine.
Also for a little extra stabilization, there's a xxxxxxxxx - temp. forgotten the word here - across the width on top where light is fastened, instead of down the length.
Hope this helps Robin, and questions are welcome. I thought I did such a good job taking multiple pics of every step, but, uhh, no. They're kind of a jumble. Sigh