Saturday, October 20, 2007

Task lighting: for beaders and for reptiles?

The other day Christi (sweetpea path) wrote a post about task lighting/OTT lamps. I asked the same question a couple of years ago when I began looking for better lighting as my eyes got older not quite as discriminating.

After experimenting with full-spectrum incandescent bulbs and finding they were not the same as sunlight, the color was off a bit. I got a OTT lamp (the foldover desk kind) and was disappointed with the illumination but not the ability to see color correctly. I even got the lamp on sale but still cringed at the price because it's not really used for general purposes and the replacment bulbs are expensive too. Because the illumination isn't the greatest for my failing eyes (and I wear bifocals too) I end up using a regular lamp as well as my OTT.

I feel totally wasteful using 2 lamps and I continue to search for the perfect lighting.

This morning I looked at a FM link that Kathy V in NM posted and yes, still cringed at the price because I can't really justify buying a second lamp. LOL and I guess I have issues with spending money!

I decided to search for comparions between OTT bulbs and other kinds of bulbs and reptile lights/bulbs came up. Hmmmmmm. I found this article discussing the differences between full-spectrum and wide-spectrum bulbs. and Scroll down to item #3 So, what lights do produce UVB?

this one discussing UVA/UVB needs for reptiles and the differneces between bulbs.
Scroll down to the chart that shows the illumination between the different bulbs. Btw, both webpages show OTT lights in comparison with other bulbs.

Mary Timme said *In her book Prescription for Quilters, a physician who keeps up on these things write about the amount of light we need to use as we age. As we age say in our 50's we need nearly twice as much light as we needed at 20. At the age of 70 we need 75% more light than we needed at 20.*

From this I get that humans need the same spectrum as reptiles and I noticed that a lot of the reptile lights have more LUX or illumination than the OTT light. And they are way cheaper in terms of price. I do believe that specialty lamps such as the OTT light for crafters are priced higher, it's a marketing thing and there is a difference between a fluorescent desk lamp look and a fluorescent fixture. Although in terms of style beaders lamps leave a lot to be desired.

Soooooo, has anyone experimented with reptile lights? Is there a difference (besides style) between a bulb/lamp marketed to beaders and one for reptiles?


Karen L. Cohen said...

In terms of lamps at a lower cost...
Joann's Fabrics on-line allows you to sign up for emails in which they give a lot of coupons, some with 50% off items they sell. Some coupons are for their website only and some are for on-line or their stores. They sell these lamps and if you get the coupons, you might be able to get them for less. But their initial price might be higher so one still needs to shop.

As long as I'm talking about Joann's...
I love the seed bead storage system from Out on a Whim ( - it's the rectangular soft plastic flip tubes (4 sizes) that fit into a 4x6 box they also sell. Well, these fit great into Joann's Jewelry Tote. 24 boxes fit in the bottom portion with room for 12 more on the top. This can certainly be gotten with their coupons for less than retail and it's well worth the price, if you travel with your beads. I own two of these, which I originally used for full time storage until I graduated to a cabinet and now use these for travel.

Hope this helps someone. Have a Beady Good Day. Karen

Mary Timme said...

I think a lot of our concepts about having it all may have gotten in our way. Joann's definitely has coupons, but watch out because some things are not covered by the coupons. Also going back to the first statement, I'm not sure you can have it all when it comes to lighting, meaning perhaps we can't have the best energy saving with also having good light. It was interesting reading about the reptiles and their lighting, and how much we cross over, I don't know, but we do use frogs as a telltale species for genetic changes that might affect people!

KV said...

Vivage -- I guess it's a matter of where our needs and preferences lie. For me, the cost of the new lamp was minimal in terms of being able to finally see what I am doing when beading. Previously the tiniest of details were simply a blur and a start of a headache.

One of our daughters used to keep several aquariums with exotic frogs and the lights you are referencing. I don't remember them being any brighter than the 18-watt full spectrum bulb I am using.

Good luck in making the choice that is right for you.

Kathy V in NM

Timaree said...

I have the 13 watt OTT and it's not enough. I thought I was the only one having trouble seeing with the OTT alone. I feel better knowing I am not alone although I wish none of us were in this boat. I didn't realize their would be so much difference between 13 and 18 watt bulbs. I have no experience with reptile or other bulbs so can't help you Vivage but this discussion has helped me.

vivage said...

Freebird, I'm going to go out and find a reptile bulb. I really want to know if the wattage/illumination is equal or better than a crafters bulb.

I'll let you know what I find.

The bad Liz said...

What I have are two table lamps - one is an OTT "style" that I bought at Staples. I replaced the light bulb with an Ott light bulb, bought with the coupon at Joann's. That's on my right side. On my left I have a lamp that fits the same bulb - again, just from the office supply store, but the arm swings out and closer to my beadwork. I replaced the over head light bult with a screw in flourescent bulb in a daylight spectrum that really seems to have helped me.

From outside, my bead room glows in the night like a firefly!!!