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  1. #1
    LCF
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    What I just learned about HID lights

    Over the last couple of weeks, my beloved Salvo 21W began to misbehave. It would strike, stay on for a few minutes, and then fail. The first time it happened, I thought perhaps I had picked up an uncharged battery. The second time, I thought maybe I had a bad battery.

    What I eventually learned is that blinking on and off in this way is one of the failure modes of HID bulbs. I swapped out the bulb, and not only is the light working perfectly, but it is MUCH brighter than it has been for a long time. Clearly the bulb was not working properly for a while.

    Anyway, I thought I would share this here, as a lot of people are using HID lights and may encounter this failure mode, and I found it quite counterintuitive that a blinking light was a bulb failure. One difference between incandescent and HID bulbs, apparently!
    check out www.divematrix.com

    "I feel as though I just got laid, and lost a bunch of weight." Pullmyfinger, about his Fundies class . . .

  2. #2
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    I guess it's a bit like the neon tubes that flicker when they are on the way out.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by nightnicon View Post
    I guess it's a bit like the neon tubes that flicker when they are on the way out.
    Florescent bulbs do too. And all three of these use ballast mechanisms. Hmmm

  4. #4
    LCF
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    This was actually a situation where the light would strike and remain on, bright and steady, for several minutes, and then go out. It would then restrike, stay on for several minutes, and go out. It was most confusing, until someone who works with high intensity lighting told me that was a failure mode for these sorts of lights.
    check out www.divematrix.com

    "I feel as though I just got laid, and lost a bunch of weight." Pullmyfinger, about his Fundies class . . .

  5. #5
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    I was just reading something about HIDs and it reminded me of this thread, so here you go:

    High-intensity discharge lamp - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Quote Originally Posted by Wikipedia
    At the end of life, many types of high-intensity discharge lamps exhibit a phenomenon known as cycling. These lamps can be started at a relatively low voltage. As they heat up during operation, however, the internal gas pressure within the arc tube rises and a higher voltage is required to maintain the arc discharge. As a lamp gets older, the voltage necessary to maintain the arc eventually rises to exceed the voltage provided by the electrical ballast. As the lamp heats to this point, the arc fails and the lamp goes out. Eventually, with the arc extinguished, the lamp cools down again, the gas pressure in the arc tube is reduced, and the ballast can once again cause the arc to strike. The effect of this is that the lamp glows for a while and then goes out, repeatedly.

  6. #6
    LCF
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    Thanks for the explanation!
    check out www.divematrix.com

    "I feel as though I just got laid, and lost a bunch of weight." Pullmyfinger, about his Fundies class . . .

 

 

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