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guidlines for shop lighting

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  • guidlines for shop lighting

    anyone here have guidlines for layout shop lighting?

    I can get a pretty good deal on 8' T5 fixtures. these hold 4 x 4' T5 54watt bulbs. I haven't done my electrical yet nor have I finished the ceiling. the shop is 30' W by 40' Deep. I was going to put 3 rows of 3 fixtures going front to back. I hate not seeing what I'm doing and don't want any shadows if possible. my shop will be multipurpose woodworking & mechanic type stuff. the front on the 30' width has a 36" man door followed by 2 10x10' garage doors. any advice would be appreaciated..

  • #2
    Re: guidlines for shop lighting

    Try and utilize full spectrum lighting. Cuts down on the shadows and the contrast/color detail is like natural sunlight, unlike regular bulbs. I don't know whethe the fixtures you are talking about take par bulbs, tubes, or accommodate regular bulbs.

    Verilux.com makes tubes and bulbs, you might also want to consider LED sunshine bulbs - expensive, but burn 10% or less of regular bulbs. Lumia.com is a site I'm familiar with but I'm sure there are other providers.

    Just my .02....
    I'm on "The List" and I love it!!

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    • #3
      Re: guidlines for shop lighting

      been checking on the net for some kind of guidlines as to how far appart and how many lights..etc but can't seem to find anything. what are people on here using for lighting in their shops?

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      • #4
        Re: guidlines for shop lighting

        I have 4, 2-bulb fixtures in the ceiling. Generally placed above the major tools. Mine are fluorescents (cheaper to run). I'm not sure what the exact specification of the fixtures are. They're 3' fluorescent bulbs. They give a good bunch of light, but I'd prefer to have at least 2 per tool because of the shadows. I think the setup you're considering would be pretty good. Take a look at where you'd most likely be putting your tools, and work your lighting around that. If you're like me, however, you'll end up changing your tool placement at least a couple times...so having a grid-like setup of overhead lights is a good idea. I also have a few office/work lights here and there. The heat of the bigger work lights is uncomfortable, so I use the office/desk lamps more.
        I put it all back together better than before. There\'s lots of leftover parts.

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        • #5
          Re: guidlines for shop lighting

          For what its worth ..the last 2 shops I builtup I used single tube 4' fixtures and tied every other 1 to the same switch ..ie 2 switches per row.The little shop I have now only has 2 rows about 30'' in from the walls.The shop before was bigger and had a row down the center too.The 30'' in from the sides is about directly over your head when standing at a bench is why I used that.2 shops I had before has 2 tube fixtures spaced out...I much prefer the lines of single tube fixtures.Most all my tools that require great light to use have a goose neck lamp mounted to it.About the only time I really used all the 4' singles was when I was into mass producing bookcases and was putting the finish on many at a time.
          Sam

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          • #6
            Re: guidlines for shop lighting

            I would run 1/2' EMT tubing and pull THHN wire through the tube to boxes.
            the EMT is easy to work with and you can run EMT or bx from the boxes to the lights. Try to place the lights at the machines and workplaces were you need the light. If the ceiling is high you can hang the lights from chains or you can hang the lights from the walls with brackets.

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            • #7
              Re: guidlines for shop lighting

              Depending on the shop I like to do both direct and indirect lighting. To help with shadows try to to have a white ceiling and bounce some light off it. If you can, look into flurescent fixtures with electronic ballasts designed for T8 tubes and that will start them at low temperatures. Over a machine you can use an industrial style fixture with a reflector but try to go for an apatured (has slots) reflector so there is some up lighting. Open tube strip style fixtures work well when monuted to a white ceiling but are of little worth when hung from a chain as the light goes all over. They light up the room but not much light strikes what is directly under the fixture.

              Please tell more about your shop. Ceiling type and height, size of shop and such. Is this is big place or a single car garage or basement size shop.

              I'll have to look more and then add links but I remember some fixture companies having design guides that come in handy and have ideas. When I find any good ones I'll add links to this post.

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              • #8
                Re: guidlines for shop lighting

                the garage is 30'W x 40' Deep. ceiling is about 12'6" from floor. it has two 10'x10' doors and a 36" man door in the front. I plan on using this as a multipurpose shop. I love to do woodworking but also love to do mechanic type work as well. I have a 100 Amp sub panel fed from my house along with a 3/4' water line feeding from the house. I have also installed a grate that covers about 22' wide 2 ' in from the front with a drain. when I poured the floor just before winter we installed the tubing for infloor heat. right now there's hardly any electrical run, the ceiling is still open, no insulation in the walls. I want to get this done during the summer so that I can have heat /functionality next winter. My plan is to have it so I can have all the stationary tools moveable. this way anything that needs a lot of room can be put back against the wall when not in use. I'm hoping to put my lights up in the next month or two.. I just wish I could have it all planed out before hand. I also need to make sure I don't have lights running down the center of both doors in case I install an electric opener later on.

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