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 Post subject: Any old light bulb experts here/ CRAZY FOLLOWUP
PostPosted: Apr Tue 04, 2017 12:00 am 
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I just sent these photos to a site specializing in old bulbs but they say it may take up to 2 weeks. So I thought that I'd ask here. The bulb is in use in the basement of our 1903 Fire House/Museum. From what I read at one site, it may be pre-1909. But the end of the base doesn't look like any that I saw there. It's a 2 filament type. The outer filament goes up, curly-qs a couple times and goes down. The inner filament does the same but it only half as high. They are very thin and springy. Any thoughts?

Image

Image

It would be fun if it has been there since day one.


Last edited by DKinYORKpa on Apr Tue 11, 2017 8:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Any old light bulb experts here?
PostPosted: Apr Tue 04, 2017 1:51 am 
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Thats a Hi-Lo, I have one in my collection. Screw it in until it lights, then to activate the other filament screw it in a little more. I saw an ad somewhere, maybe Modern Electrics 1909.

Chas

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 Post subject: Re: Any old light bulb experts here?
PostPosted: Apr Tue 04, 2017 11:52 am 
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That explains the base! Would love that ad or any other info about the bulb.


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 Post subject: Re: Any old light bulb experts here?
PostPosted: Apr Tue 04, 2017 3:46 pm 
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Nothing much more to add beyond what Chas said. Looking at the envelope and base, I'd say it's about 1910, give or take a couple of years.

If it's still in use, I'd run it using a current limiting device to protect it from inrush and surges.

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 Post subject: Re: Any old light bulb experts here?
PostPosted: Apr Tue 04, 2017 10:50 pm 
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It's a hy-lo, not hi-lo....big difference :lol: .....here it is:

https://books.google.com/books?id=36kQA ... ht&f=false


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 Post subject: Re: Any old light bulb experts here?
PostPosted: Apr Tue 04, 2017 11:44 pm 
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Change the "Y" to an "I" and a Lo :roll:

Here is an ad on ebay:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/1912-ADVERTISEM ... 1568662586

Chas

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 Post subject: Re: Any old light bulb experts here?
PostPosted: Apr Wed 05, 2017 12:43 am 
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Notice how slowly carbon filament lamps come up to brightness and how long they seem to last? I would think they are sort of naturally inrush limiting, or something. Still I would think the fewer cycles it has to endure, the better, even if it stays on all the time and the vacuum is good.

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 Post subject: Re: Any old light bulb experts here?
PostPosted: Apr Wed 05, 2017 1:56 am 
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wazz wrote:
Notice how slowly carbon filament lamps come up to brightness and how long they seem to last? I would think they are sort of naturally inrush limiting, or something. Still I would think the fewer cycles it has to endure, the better, even if it stays on all the time and the vacuum is good.


Yep, and a lot, and I mean a LOT of carbon filament bulbs are still out there and in working order. Most had heavier gauge filaments. As a whole, they were phased out in the early 1920s in favor of the tungsten filament that was introduced in or about 1911. Even a lot of the earlier tungsten bulbs can be found in working order today. My house (built in 1917-18) has an old Mazda tungsten filament bulb in one of the basement sockets that I think might be original to the house.

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 Post subject: Re: Any old light bulb experts here?
PostPosted: Apr Wed 05, 2017 3:36 am 
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FWIR other than the carbon filament lamps, it was the tantalum lamps that had a long life. In some instances if the filament parted i was possible to manipulate the bulb such that the broken ends of the filament would join and a few more hours gained...

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 Post subject: Re: Any old light bulb experts here?
PostPosted: Apr Tue 11, 2017 8:51 pm 
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So I ran this story past the person at work who puts stuff on our Face Book page. I asked her if she found the whole thing interesting. "not really" ........so I asked if it would be OK if I pitched it to the local newspaper. I got a tacit approval. On Sunday, their photographer that I personally know called me up to arrange for his shooting the bulb and a video and getting the facts for a story. Monday, he tells me that it is on-line.

http://www.ydr.com/story/tech/2017/04/1 ... 100265152/

Today he texts me to say that they pushed it out to USA Today. It's on their FB page and it got 8 thousand "likes". :shock: He texts later to say that it's on some Oregon TV station's FB page. I guess it's interesting to some people. :lol:

The story indirectly mentions ARF, but not by name. And the story gives the impression that the bulb has been burning since 1903. Which, of course is not true. It's been turned on and off in the basement for at least 15 years which is how long my museum has operated this museum. How the bulb ended up in the basement is unknown.


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 Post subject: Re: Any old light bulb experts here/ CRAZY FOLLOWUP
PostPosted: Apr Tue 11, 2017 10:19 pm 
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Cool!

FWIR My Hy-Lo came in a box of old tubes from an estate on Cape Cod.

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 Post subject: Re: Any old light bulb experts here/ CRAZY FOLLOWUP
PostPosted: Apr Wed 12, 2017 2:31 am 
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Bone cool! Nice looking building you have, too.


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 Post subject: Re: Any old light bulb experts here/ CRAZY FOLLOWUP
PostPosted: Apr Wed 12, 2017 2:33 am 
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Every few years I post this:

http://centennialbulb.org/

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 Post subject: Re: Any old light bulb experts here?
PostPosted: Apr Wed 12, 2017 4:53 am 
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wazz wrote:
Notice how slowly carbon filament lamps come up to brightness and how long they seem to last? I would think they are sort of naturally inrush limiting, or something. Still I would think the fewer cycles it has to endure, the better, even if it stays on all the time and the vacuum is good.


Carbon filaments have high resistance when cold, so they gradually come on and then draw more current as the resistance gets lower.
Tungsten looks like a short circuit when cold, so many switches actually have a lower current "T rating" for tungsten lamp loads, to handle the surge without welding or burning.


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 Post subject: Re: Any old light bulb experts here/ CRAZY FOLLOWUP
PostPosted: Apr Wed 12, 2017 6:39 pm 
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So now it's on page 4A of USA TODAY. It's the page entitled State-By-State where there's one short story for every state, but for Pennsylvania, they reprinted the whole story from our paper.


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 Post subject: Re: Any old light bulb experts here/ CRAZY FOLLOWUP
PostPosted: Apr Wed 12, 2017 8:26 pm 
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I asked the fellow who wrote the story if his paper's stories end up on USA Today frequently. He pointed out that they are owned by Gannett, the publisher of USA Today along with 100 some other papers, so they do get their stuff on there a couple times a month. They like stories like this due to their "universal appeal, history, Americana, simpler times, etc." While those of us here at ARF are not shocked to hear that a hundred year old bulb (tube) still works, to everyday people it conjures up thoughts like "they don't make 'em like they used to." Thus, the story has made it all the way to a TV station's FB page in India :shock: . It didn't hurt that some editors changed the headline to imply that it has been working since 1903 :lol: .


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 Post subject: Re: Any old light bulb experts here/ CRAZY FOLLOWUP
PostPosted: Apr Thu 13, 2017 12:50 am 
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Just wait till you show them one of your amazing radios that has been playing since 1932!

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