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Thread: New shop update

  1. #1
    Boolit Grand Master

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    Lighting in a shop

    Im getting ready to put up a pole barn with a enclosed room for a shop. The room will be stud walls inside the pole barn Insulated and Heated and air conditioned not only for my comfort but also to enhance accuracy. Room is going to be 20' X 30'. Basic tools lathe, mill, saw, grinder, maybe a shaper and horizontal mill as to machines. also a tig welder. My wood working equipment will be stored in the building outside the room to save clutter in the shop. Ceiling will be 10'. Air line will be a 2" line center of the ceiling running down center with drops at machines and benches. Air compressor will be in the building garage area also. 1 6' door direct to out side. One 8' panel door to inside of the building. At least 1 bench maybe several. Im considering lighting now. What works best for doing precision work? Are LEDs up to the task or are they to yellow / shadows? Ive worked under mercury vapors ( yellow and shadows both along with a hum) Florecents a dull light but okay for most fine work. light bulbs good light but takes a lot of them to overcome shadows. Im wanting a good light that's dependable and lasting, Im in a wheel chair so changing bulbs is a real pain. Ive thought about angled fixtures down each wall in the ceiling wall corner 4 fixtures down each side. The 10; ceiling should help some with the shadows also.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master labradigger1's Avatar
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    4100 kelvin led 4’ fixtures suspended at 8’ from finished floor. Long lasting, cold does not affect them.
    Second choice would be high bay lighting but you will change bulbs more frequently than led
    Life is so much better with dogs!

  3. #3
    Boolit Master sawinredneck's Avatar
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    30x30x16’ metal building, I have eight porcelain screw in bulb holders with LED’s and a ceiling fan with an LED, it’s plenty bright in here for me.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Irish Proverb: Never approach a Bull from the front, a horse from the rear, or an Idiot from any direction!

  4. #4
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    LED all the way. Way brighter and whiter with very long life. And more economical from electricity used but more costly to start with (initial cost) but coming down very very quickly.

  5. #5
    Boolit Buddy
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    In my shop I used 48” LED, they work good, not yellow, you have to put enough in to avoid shadows,
    Lithiona lighting was brand, $40 each no issues with them yet with 1 year of use 2-3 hours a day

  6. #6
    Super Moderator & Official Cast Boolits Sketch Artist


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    The LEDs I have seen in large shops have been small round fixtures they are installing around town replacing 8 foot fixtures they are brighter and they only have two to three to a bay. My brother installed the 4 foot LED fixtures you can buy at the big box stores replacing the 4 foot tubes they light up when its cold and they are very bright.
    Something to keep in mind all LEDs are not the same they have different light out put levels when they look the same. As far as the cold or how they hold up it not that cold here for long term and he has had his up for about a year so far without any problem. The shops I speak of have only been up about 3 months.
    I was told by a friend that had his garage done there is a salesman going around to the shops selling the package deal to replace his lighting and for the cost he told me he could not have bought new 8 foot fixtures for what it cost him for the LEDs and labor. I have a feeling they are getting some kind of goverment help for going green.
    Reloading to save money I am sure the saving is going to start soon

  7. #7
    Boolit Bub
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    LED all the way ..4 footers ..can be had in different temperatures (light color) and Lumen choices (brightness) ...lots of internet info on the color and lumen needs for specific work environments ... up front cost is not much more than good reflective florescent ..operating cost is considerably less and maintenance goes to all but zero

    Bear

  8. #8
    Boolit Master
    lefty o's Avatar
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    ive gone to LED's, and am never going back. you can get about any color light you want, but for bright white light to work in 4-5000 kelvins is where you want to be. i suggest going to a menards or other store with large light area so you can look at them all lit.

  9. #9
    Boolit Buddy

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    2 BigAss Lights will make it look like daylight in the shop. They are a little expensive but the output in awesome.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master
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    Led in a shop is the way to go. Very bright and white light. The old mercury vapor lights where a yellow light that had shadows. With led no shadows and they have come down a lot in price. They also last a lot longer. I have worked on all the different lighting systems working in schools ,shops, garages, and led is so much better.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master
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    i have a 50x75 shop and i put 16 4 bulb 4ft t8 fixture lights in it and its super bright,no shadows anywhere

  12. #12
    Boolit Master


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    In my 2 car garage there are 2 single light bulb sockets in the ceiling. I put 100 watt equivalent LED 4000K bulbs in them and it's very well lit for a garage. I could certainly build airplanes in that lighting.

    We're moving to a different house soon and the garage has T-5 fluorescents. All of them have bad ballasts which are about $26 each. Our new LED shop lights arrived today and I tested each one to make sure they worked. No all of the Amazon reviews were great but as with many Amazon reviews I was scratching my head after testing these lights.

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B076XVX1VN...detail_7?psc=1

    They are BRIGHT! All worked as expected. They seem to sell very fast. We wanted the clear tubes but only the frosted ones were available on the day we ordered. Today the clear ones are available and the frosted are out of stock. They don't weigh a lot and while the fixtures are not as heavy as the old T-12 and T-8 fixtures, they don't need to be because there's no ballast and the LEDs weigh virtually nothing. The tubes are flexible plastic so very resistant to breakage. I only wish they had been available in 4000K instead of 5000K.
    Sometimes life taps you on the shoulder and reminds you it's a one way street. Jim Morris

  13. #13
    Boolit Master



    retread's Avatar
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    I went with some 6 bulb Vanity bathroom fixtures and mounted them on the ceiling. Fixtures and bulbs were cheap on Amazon. Lots of light! I plan on replacing all florescents as the go out with the same LED setups.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  14. #14
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    I use a combination of LED 4 ft fixtures and LED strip lights. the strip lights are great under shelves, good light they stick on and don't take up much room

  15. #15
    Boolit Grand Master
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    All good information.

    If you have any plans to work on vehicles in that building I recommend placing a few lights on the walls about 2' down from that 10' ceiling. Lights on the ceiling are fine for most work but the hoods, trunk lids and vehicle itself cause shadows when the lights are only on the ceiling. By placing a few lamps high up, but not at the top of the walls; you get far better coverage when working on vehicles. A light directly over a vehicle ends up illuminating the roof and hood while casting shadows under the hood. Lights on the upper walls of the shop are the difference between needing a work lamp every time you open the hood verses not always needing that extra light. Little things like that save work over the long run.

    The old incandescent blubs use a lot more power (bad) and produce a lot of heat (bad in the summer, good in the winter). However there's another advantage to the old incandescent bulbs and that's a lack of RF interference for some radio gear, particularly AM radio. The ballasts on fluorescent fixtures are the worst for creating interference but even some of the LED fixtures produce a lot interference. Because of that, I keep a few incandescent lights around the bench for the times I want to listen to a radio while working. Overall, LED is the way to go in terms of light output/power consumed/heat produced.
    I have a large halogen two bulb lamp hanging over my reloading bench because LEDs were not available when I built that setup. It produces excellent light for that type of work but I wouldn't want a lot of those fixtures in a shop. They consume a lot of power and make a lot of heat. Again that heat can be useful at times, like when drying paint, stain, polyurethane, etc. on small items during the winter.

    So, my input on this project is to use LED's for the bulk of the area lighting but consider some specific incandescent fixtures for a few isolated work stations.

  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    The US government has published standards for industrial lighting.
    The color of a shop is also important for minimizing eye strain.
    You might research industrial engineering references for over all lighting. Even with quality lighting you will probably want a lamp directly on some of the work stations.
    EDG

  17. #17
    Boolit Master
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    Don't cheap out. My workshop is 32x32 and it has 20, 2 bulb fluorescent fixtures (4 ft bulbs). I wanted super bright but didnt get it. Should of had 24 or more fixtures installed.
    Ceiling is 10 foot high
    Last edited by snowwolfe; 12-05-2018 at 07:53 PM.
    East Tennessee

  18. #18
    Boolit Master Thumbcocker's Avatar
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    Harbor freight had 4' LED lights on sale this month.
    You'll go far providin' you ain't burnt alive or scalped."

    Will Geer as Bear Claw in "Jeramiah Johnson"

  19. #19
    Boolit Grand Master

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    Im currently thinking of mounting 4 down the center of the ceiling and 3 down each side in the corner of the ceiling wall joint at an angle ( pointing to the floor wall across the room) Also having each run on separate switch so what is needed can be turned on. Since the air compressor is going to be outside the room also a switch for it. Im thinking also a separate breaker box for the room inside set up so it can be locked out for security. Here I can use the box as control for lights, equipment, furnace and air conditioner. Im also thinking of increasing the main air line to 3" for a little more capacity. A 3" X 30' supply is a pretty good supply in addition to the tank on the compressor. Not planning on any vehicles in this room ( other than grand sons bicycles when they need repaired or customized). But the bigger doors make it easier for me and the wheel chair to get thru, along with any new equipment. My wood working equipment will be on castors and floor locks so it can be stored outside the room when not needed. Lathe Mill Shaper grinder and other machines will be anchored and leveled in place. Planning on a 10" concrete floor under the shop area and 6" rest of building so I should have a good base to work from. Thinking a semi smooth finish for the floor short of a brushed finish ( hard to sweep up chips and fine shaving from a brushed floor) I may use it a few years then put down an epoxy finish. Another idea is 2X4 grating 1" thick in the top of the concrete floor to add support and strength to it. Have also considered a wood block floor on top of the concrete, my issue with this is once laid in tight a leak or water swells them and you get "turtles" in the floor from the expansion.

  20. #20
    Boolit Master
    429421Cowboy's Avatar
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    LED is the way to go, with more lights than recommended/you think you need. One thing I have learned from my boss here is that more light is never a bad thing. We have LED's every 4 feet in our machine shop and mechanic shop, mostly the old T8 fixtures with LED conversions in them. Plenty enough to not have any shadows, and they put out good color lights. The other benefits is that I can run a huge number if lights on the same circuit that used to only run 8 T8 lights.
    Raisin' Black Angus cows, outta gas, outta money, outta tags, low on boolits, but full 'a hope on the Rocky Mountain Eastern Slope!
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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check