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Old 12-21-2019, 12:34 PM   #15
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Did you cut out the ballast? One thing to be aware of is the color temperature of the led strips. Many are over 4000k which is bluish white and really shows shadows and stuff. 3500k is better for matching the yellowish light we are used to.
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Old 12-21-2019, 12:48 PM   #16
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Yup, tore everything out thinking 'good riddance' to fluorescent lighting. Then I had to put it all back together when I reverted. Glad I'm a packrat and save everything.


spdracr39 - do you happen to remember the part number for the WalMart bulbs? Cheapest I can find is twice your price.
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Old 12-21-2019, 01:00 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RustyTools View Post
I cleaned with acetone as well, but my problem wasn't so much that the tape/strip didn't stick to the fixture but that the heat softened the tape and the tape/strip pulled loose from the fixture.


What LEDs did y'all use?

I bought mine in Jan 2013, couldn't find the vendor but here is a link to similar ones based on the description I had.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Super-Brigh...sAAOSwh1haGSfe

The original order description was "New 12V 5m 300LEDs Flexible 36W SMD5050 White Light LED Light Strip White Lamp"
Haven't had a problem with them releasing from where they were first installed.
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Old 12-21-2019, 02:01 PM   #18
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My fixtures are 30 plus years old. They use one F15t8 bulb per fixture,, It is hard to get accurate specs They should put out 800 lumens. A daylight bulb is around 6000 Kelvin I think they use 15 watts. If you buy strips they should closely match the lumen output. You need room in the fixture for the strips. If you buy 12 volt tubes and keep the ballast there is ZERO energy savings. I was thinking of upgrading but I have a lot of fixtures. Like maybe 30! Too much work. So far I only have to replace the odd bulb. If a ballast goes I would go for the LED.
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Old 12-21-2019, 02:49 PM   #19
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Sme of the tubes to replace a fluorescent are no more energy efficient than a fluorescent bulb, The 4 ft. LED tubes at Walmart are not energy efficient.
They use 1/2 as much as the florescent even with the ballast. They are 7 watt bulbs and 5000k. I would venture to say that the strip light mods use 1/2 again as much as these. Not all of us are concerned with the energy efficiency as much as we are the level of brightness. I Also didn't want to modify the fixtures for no other reason than laziness lol. I only turn the overheads on when I need extra light to see otherwise I use the led puck lights.
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Old 12-21-2019, 02:52 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by RustyTools View Post
Yup, tore everything out thinking 'good riddance' to fluorescent lighting. Then I had to put it all back together when I reverted. Glad I'm a packrat and save everything.


spdracr39 - do you happen to remember the part number for the WalMart bulbs? Cheapest I can find is twice your price.
https://www.walmart.com/ip/Great-Val...ches/931043098
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Old 12-21-2019, 11:44 PM   #21
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Rusty, I tried the LED strips years ago with same results as you. Since then, LED lights have improved, with the latest type being the 2835 (not to be confused with 3528] that have higher efficiency , along with better heat management.

About 8 years ago, I sprung for Ming's Mark LED tubes, that bypass the ballast. Both the 12" and 18 come in two lumen ratings. So I started with both the higher and lower ratings, for both lengths. I found the lower ratings, for each length, to closely match the existing tubes and finished the coach with such. They make only one color which close to the OE tubes, also. That was 8 years ago and though they were expensive, they were well worth it

I purchased them from Makarios RV which has since closed. I see that RVupgrades.com sell them, but not sure if in the lower lumen rating.

With your coach being a twin to mine, once you have your coach lamps all LED, you will be able to flip a couple of DIP switches on the Intellect module to make everything dimmable. You will be able to dim the front, bathroom, and bedroom using the switches, just like you do with the incandescent bulbs now.


Ming's Mark

3528102 12 300 lumen T5
5050128 12 500 lumen T5

3528101 18" 500 lumen T8
5050127 18 700 lumen T8

Amazon has the 12 in stock, but not the 18. But, with the numbers, you can search.
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Old 12-22-2019, 12:04 AM   #22
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I bought these for all my fixtures:

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

They are great, super bright and I actually only used one tube per fixture b/c of how much light they put out. These clip into the existing fixture but you have an included pigtail that you wire up to the incoming power, I kept the factory switch on each fixture and just cut the wire to the ballast. Easy. They don't make much heat at all (heat is wasted power!) and even having ALL of them on, my battery monitor is only showing about 3 amps being used. Super happy.
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Old 12-22-2019, 06:11 AM   #23
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I purchased the following on Amazon. Used 3-4 per strip.

SpiritLED 100 Lots Strip Light Mounting Bracket Fixing Clip-One Side Fixing,Screws included (100, Hollow Distance 10.8mm (Ideal for strip width 10mm)). Cost $7.44
http://www.amazon.com/s?k=SpiritLED+...ref=nb_sb_noss

While investigating this project I found that excess DC voltage and fluctuations (greater than 12V) can negatively effect the life of the LEDs. This can occur when powering the lights when driving and the alternator is putting out 14v. I added the following: DC-DC LM2596 Step Down Adjustable Converter Power Supply Module 1.3V-35V which I purchased on Amazon (10 pcs. for $14.55). With this you can adjust to assure a constant voltage of 12v to the LEDs even if the input voltage is 14v.

https://amazon.com/eBoot-LM2596-Conv...7020175&sr=8-2
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Old 12-22-2019, 07:58 AM   #24
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Geordi: If I used the bulbs you recommended I would have over $1000.00 invested in lighting. Most sellers have those lights for far less. But if you only need a few might be better quality.
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Old 12-22-2019, 01:28 PM   #25
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When I converted mine I purchased the roll off ebay - they were self stick. After sticking in place I ran a very thin bead of silicone along the each edge of each strip just in case. If a person were to buy strips without adhesive I could recommend against using the foam style double backed tape. Try to find as thin of tape as possible because you want the heat to be drawn into the fixture so it can act as a heat sink. I'd be afraid the foam style tape would act as an insulator. LEDs hate heat.
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Old 12-22-2019, 10:30 PM   #26
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Geordi: If I used the bulbs you recommended I would have over $1000.00 invested in lighting. Most sellers have those lights for far less. But if you only need a few might be better quality.
How many fixtures do you have? I have 11 in my coach, and when I bought them, they were $15 each. I only bought 1 tube for each b/c of how bright they are.

I'd love to know someone that has the same units at a cheaper price, but they would have to still be decent quality as these are capable of handling all of the voltage fluctuations of a low voltage system. I think with the heat complaints, that some of the systems people may be using are actually 3V systems with resistors to drain the excess power off as heat. These tubes don't do that, they don't make any heat at all.

At least you only need to buy them once!
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Old 12-23-2019, 07:24 AM   #27
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geordi: I have 32 single tube fixtures in our Bluebird. 9 of them are overhead in the middle of the ceiling. The rest are indirect close to the window valence. Presently if you turn them all on it lights up like the city of lights. I think it was happycarz that posted a price of over $30. each. Thus my $1000 estimate. We have LED yard lights and the town has LED street lights. Looking directly at the lights they are bright. But to my old eyes LED lighting does not spread like incandescent or fluorescent. Our Dynasty would be easy to convert to LED. Only 3 or 4 fluorescents. The rest are mostly puck lights. Cheap to modify. I have found that one has to be cautious with Chinese products. Our fluorescents last a long time. Made in the USA. Will cheap tubes last as long. Will they give the same lumens as the fluorescent?. My fixtures bt the windows are very hard to work on. I am following this and other threads to make a decision. I will be at Q and will look at what is available.. I also have a bout 8 bullet spotlight fixtures in the Bluebird!
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Old 12-23-2019, 07:54 AM   #28
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I went with these. They do cost more. But we where happy with the results.


https://pdxrvwholesale.com/products/...ite-calf296-sw
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