Elmas Xantia V6 and Musical Stuff

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Zelandeth
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6 and Musical Stuff

Post by Zelandeth »

Sadly that also seems to be all too common...an upgrade to work well needs to be done right...you can't just rip out a 35W SOX lantern and stuff in a 20W LED one in its place. Firstly, it will produce less light to start with, and the spread pattern is quite different, so the columns need to be spaced differently.

The one that made me bash my head against the wall most about this was when they did this is one of the industrial estates back in Aberdeen. Replaced a whole load of 55W SOX columns with *more* 70W LED lanterns, just about maintaining the light level...then claiming that it would save them thousands a year in energy costs...no, no dimming or part night operation either.

Certainly didn't save them on maintenance either given how many failed in the first year before I left...in fact several had been ditched and replaced with halides (150W Philips Cosmos I think) in frustration! So in the interests of *ahem* saving energy we've gone from 55W per column to 70W...and they're hardly lasting a year (they're over a grand each just for the lantern...never mind the column!), whereas all but two of the lanterns (Thorn Beta 5's I think) they replaced were 40+ years old never asking for more than a new lamp every four or five years, and the occasional clean of the bowl. The two exceptions I mentioned were wiped out in the early 90s in a traffic accident and were replaced with identical ones.

I'd love to say this is an isolated case, but sadly being someone with an interest in lighting tech (and a soft spot for the warm light of the old amber SOX lanterns) this sort of nonsense is something that is seen everywhere now. Even here in MK we're seeing LED popping up everywhere - especially where the lighting is fine already, ignoring where it actually *needs* upgrading - then turning into a total maintenance headache.

Last winter I did my usual "start of October wander" of my local area to give the lighting guys a chance to sort the list I gave them before the really dark nights arrived. LED outnumbered conventional lanterns on that defect list by nearly two to one - and there was only one estate fitted with them out of four!

elma
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6 and Musical Stuff

Post by elma »

With a fair bit of experience standing on a wobbly platform installing LEDS I think it's unfair to judge them by what the council choose to install. Generally the products going into streetlights, residential and commercial installations are cheap crap and perform as such. Incorrect installation takes about 40% (judged by my eyes only) of the light away as well, the leds are quite easily "bridged" incorrectly and they will work but at massively reduced output. I know this because it's exactly what I did the first time I installed them. I didn't notice either, I was pulled up for having dim lights in my bit when they were commissioned.

In Industry and also the military they are using Phillips LEDs mostly. From what I have seen they outperform HPS by miles. They come in a wide choice of colour temperature, spread and wattage. With the Phillips Leds the light output is amazing, I've always observed them as being far brighter but at less wattage than the old stuff that was removed.

I can't really comment on reliability as I've never done the maintenance side of things on a wide scale. I don't think the Phillips would be unreliable though looking at the quality of them. The cheap ones are unacceptably unreliable, when I installed them as a maintenance guy at a machine shop I had 2 DOA and a lot that started flickering or just failed in a short space of time. These were the cheap crap ones I had advised against buying though so no surprise.

Lighting is probably the fastest growing area in electrics. Most people wouldn't believe how the modern systems in industry and really big builds work. No twin and Earth, just cat 5 and driver units all fed from a psu and computer controlled. It's very much getting towards needing a data engineer as well as an electrical engineer to install a system. In fact Phillips won't let anyone commission their systems, they have to be checked off, set up and commissioned, post install, by one of Phillips own Technicians. Disagree with this and they won't sell you the products, not that you could turn them on anyway as the technician has the software they need and you can't buy or see it.

The cheaper end of the market favoured by councils and the like is fisher price crap and you can tell when you hold it. I'm not surprised that they fail regularly at all. It's like the difference between a rolls royce and a car that none will take for free. Even what you would consider premium brands, like Osram, make absolute rubbish compared to phillips although not bad compared to many other brands.

I've been out of that particular game for about a year now and things will have moved on incredibly in that time. Nowadays as far as electrics go I assist when we really need it on residential developments. It's quite rare I get to spend more than a few hours playing with wires and associated stuff. I doubt I'll ever see "the good stuff" again to be honest. I'm quite content though, my work is more varied and interesting than it was then and my life is far more stable living and working in a single place.

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van ordinaire
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6 and Musical Stuff

Post by van ordinaire »

More useless information: the Canadians decided traffic lights were an ideal application for LED's - then discovered they don't give off enough heat to keep them snow free. #-o

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Zelandeth
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6 and Musical Stuff

Post by Zelandeth »

Absolutely agreed. I spent nearly eight years working in local government, and know all too well that 90% of the time what goes in is defined by the lowest bottom line. Never looking further than the next election cycle.

That's why in 2010 I was scrapping bus shelters that had been in the ground less than four years. Because my predecessor got "a good deal" on them. While it was a battle on my part, I'm happy to say that accidents nonwithstanding, what they were replaced with will still be there in 20 years.

Sixty of those abominations went in, and I think about 20 are now left hanging on now (literally in some cases!).

The biggest issue I've found with LED kit seems to be the drivers. Don't think I've yet seen a streetlight where the actual lamp assembly has failed, but the driver's seem to be pretty fragile - especially where water is concerned. That's also where a lot of the cheaper lanterns fall down...so take a cheap driver in a cheap housing...yeah... it's not going to end well.

Sadly even the best driver from Philips, Iwasaki (have they got into the LED game?) Etc is still going to go pop if it's swimming in half an inch of water, treatment that many an old autotransformer SOX ballast or Mercury choke has shrugged off...at the expense of efficiency though...it's all a balancing act isn't it really.

I'd really like to have a play around with some of the recent good quality LED kit beyond the domestic sector, sadly the price of admission is just too high for me to justify it for what is essentially just a hobby. Not like I need more expensive hobbies...have enough of those already!

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CitroJim
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Re: RE: Re: Elmas Xantia V6 and Musical Stuff

Post by CitroJim »

Michel wrote:
Zelandeth wrote:As far as stargazing goes I say bring back the (old) sodium streetlights...Easy to filter out as the output from low pressure sodium lamps is pretty much entirely monochromatic at 589nM...
I say bring them back so I can see where I'm going! They've replaced all our local ones with LEDs this year and while the light is whiter and cleaner, the scatter is narrow and much less of the place is lit up. Our driveway, for example is about 15m from the nearest streetlamp. Where it was sufficiently lit before, it's now almost pitch black as the LEDs have no scatter.


I quite agree... I don't like LED lights at all in any situation. To me they all suffer terrible glare and that causes great discomfort...

LPS lamps are totally adequate for all situations and their light I find is gentle on my eyes while doing the job rather well... I love their soft yellow light and even the red glow of the penning mixture then they first start... I mourn their loss...

And if LPS lamps still enjoy very high efficiency then why has there been a headlong rush to replace them with LEDS? I thought it was all to do with efficiency...

Or is it to do with a potentially much longer life and thus cutting down the maintenance commitments on councils despite their greater thirst for electricity?

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Zelandeth
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6 and Musical Stuff

Post by Zelandeth »

Fifty fifty split between cost gains due to lower maintenance costs/energy savings, and there being a huge push among the public apparently towards wanting white light.

There are a lot of other advantages from a maintenance perspective in some cases as some models allow remote management, automatic fault reporting etc. Likewise, they exist with motion detection allowing them to run in a low power mode until there's movement in the vicinity. Though are only on the more expensive models that rarely seem to actually appear on the ground.

The big drop in demand for SOX lamps here and in Europe (they've never really been popular in the US) has lead to a big drop in production (Philips are the only company still making them at their Hamilton plant), prices heading up (I've got two floodlights out back which take 18W SOX lamps - last lamp cost me forty quid!), and it seems that the quality has started dropping in the last couple of years as early failures seem to becoming a lot more common.

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van ordinaire
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6 and Musical Stuff

Post by van ordinaire »

I hate sodium lights, they provide no illumination while at the same time completely negating headlights, and provide an unreal, positively depressing ambience - almost post-apocalyptic; but nothing like that exciting, almost surreal, yellow sky you can get in electrical storms.

elma
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6 and Musical Stuff

Post by elma »

So Wales trip is done and I have a barn full of stuff including my tools at last.
Xantia was lovely on the way to Luton to collect the van.

Van was great on the way back here and the way to Wales.
Van was rubbish coming back from Wales, LWB Boxxer vans apparently overload with a pack of chewing gum in the back.
The brakes and steering are just dire when loaded to the point that I will never buy a Boxxer despite just 2 weeks ago asking the company if I could do a deal on one of the old ones.

I used to be quite fond of our ones but have never driven them with more than 500kg in the back before.
The brakes are functional though, it's a common complaint with our vans and they were tested just before the MOT and at the MOT which was the day before I took the Van. I think Peugeot need to update the brakes a bit, they are not safe. My LDV pilot fully laden stopped like an F1 car compared to the Boxxer and I thought it had crap brakes at the time.
Why modern LWBs are FWD is just beyond me, it's like manufacturers think we don't need to go around corners when loaded.
Mercedes, Ford and VW still have the right idea as their LWBs are all RWD still.

Getting the Xantia back was just lovely despite a few little things.
Going from the Van back to the Xantia made it so much more obvious that I really need to sort out the front end and the Brakes.
It was also obvious I need heaters, had to drive 3 hours at night with none!
First thing I need to do though is organise my tools and parts.
Once I'm there I can finally jack it up and do a proper inspection, usually thats the day after I buy a car but I've had this one about 9 months I think and not ever done a proper inspection.
Then an action plan based on what I see, probably with LHM leaks and Brakes right at the top, they both scare me.

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CitroJim
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6 and Musical Stuff

Post by CitroJim »

Having all your tools with you will be a great help James...

elma
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6 and Musical Stuff

Post by elma »

I've been dreaming about them since December.
Even doing an oil change was impossible until now, poor Xantia has been very patient with me.
Lots of love to come over the following weeks, she's going to be the happiest Xantia in the World soon.

Forgot to mention the auto box played up a bit again, it was holding the gears to 5000rpm but not changing up for ages when driven fast. It also started doing rough downshifts from 4 to 3.
My original guess seems to be right, the battery lead was loose and after tightening it the box was back to normal within 30mins or so of driving.
Very happy with the end result, basically I was crapping myself that I'd destroyed a very good gearbox.

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CitroJim
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6 and Musical Stuff

Post by CitroJim »

That's a relief with the gearbox James :D

For future reference, I've known that problem to be caused by binding brakes too ;)

elma
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6 and Musical Stuff

Post by elma »

I also have binding brakes, they sit near the top of the repair list.

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CitroJim
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6 and Musical Stuff

Post by CitroJim »

Binding brakes has the effect of making the gearbox logic believe you're always going uphill!

elma
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6 and Musical Stuff

Post by elma »

I may clean them up when I get inspecting. I have front pads but don't want to fit them on the crappy old discs. Alasdair may have a set for me, not sure as it was a while ago. Will find out in 2 weekends I'm sure.

Got a new phone, not enjoying it. Damn thing changes nearly every word I write. Then when I correct it changes the bit I correct to a whole word. Only on the third go will it leave my typing alone. Never ceases to amaze me how things that work fine are redesigned to be a pita.

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CitroJim
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6 and Musical Stuff

Post by CitroJim »

elma wrote:Got a new phone, not enjoying it. Damn thing changes nearly every word I write. Then when I correct it changes the bit I correct to a whole word. Only on the third go will it leave my typing alone. Never ceases to amaze me how things that work fine are redesigned to be a pita.


Totally agree...

That drives me up the wall with my Android Tablet :evil:

My Windows phone likes to insert random commas when typing in WhatsApp... Why I just don't know...