Practical Camp Lighting

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JasonFL
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Practical Camp Lighting

Post by JasonFL » Thu Aug 15, 2013 1:57 pm

One good question and possibly one super dumb question:

Good Question (I think): How much light do LED String lights put out? Such as this set http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007TS ... 27M18VEIRS

I can't find a manufacturer specification on them. If I buy four of them for our 8' X 15' shade structure, will it be enough "practical" light?

Dumb question: If I go with multi-colored, will that produce considerably less practical light?

Does anyone else have any good ideas on lighting options?

Thanks!
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Captain Goddammit
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by Captain Goddammit » Thu Aug 15, 2013 2:13 pm

Colored will definitely cut your useable light way down.
It's a judgement call how bright you consider enough but you can probably function on four of those.
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forty_eight
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by forty_eight » Thu Aug 15, 2013 2:14 pm

I'm going to put some of these in soup cans and hang them around the shade structure:

Image

canned lighting, ftw :)

I also have a coleman led lantern to be deployed

and some colorful strings, etc

we'll see if that ends up being practical or not!

percussivepaul
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by percussivepaul » Thu Aug 15, 2013 2:34 pm

This kind of light is good for chilling, but doesn't quite reach the level of "bright" that is sometimes nice (e.g. while cooking dinner). If you are in an enclosed space where light will get thrown on the ceiling and walls, it will be brighter. But I suggest getting a high-brightness camping lantern or two which you can switch on and off for when you need "bright".

P.S. In my opinion, the cold-white colour is kind of a drag, and the multicoloured ones are prettier, though they will probably feel less bright.

Pay attention to customer reviews. People say 8 to 10 hours of battery life which is a drag and you can certainly find others that will last longer... but it also means these ones might be bright enough without a lantern. Then again, do you want to be replacing batteries every night? There's a tradeoff between brightness and battery life, another good reason to have low-brightness (long-lasting) lights that are on all week, and high-brightness lanterns that are only on in bursts when you need them.

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geospyder
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by geospyder » Thu Aug 15, 2013 3:02 pm

I have a 100 white string thirty feet long. I plan to use it on the ceiling of my monkey hut. It will work for what I want (ambient lighting) but, I am surprised at how little light it provides. It will be supplemented with a small lantern for sure and possibility a couple strings of multicolored leds.
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by FIGJAM » Thu Aug 15, 2013 3:35 pm

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Eric
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by Eric » Thu Aug 15, 2013 4:07 pm

JasonFL wrote:One good question and possibly one super dumb question:

Good Question (I think): How much light do LED String lights put out? Such as this set http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007TS ... 27M18VEIRS
These look very similar to the red & blue 40 LED strands I got from China, and those colors toss a nice chunk of light (especially the blue). Both these & mine take 3 AA batteries, so they should be similar brightness. They're fine for ambient light, I wouldn't rely on them for night-work. If you concentrate the white ones in an area (ie: over a kitchen), you would probably get enough light to work.

Hint for next year - order lights waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay earlier. I got my 40 LED strands from China for 3.49 ea, with super-cheap shipping, no minimum (I got 2 strands). The catch is that it takes 4ish weeks to get here.
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CornMan
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by CornMan » Thu Aug 15, 2013 5:11 pm

Propane lanterns work nice if you have the space to transport them. I carry an extra glass globe spray painted with colored, high temp engine paint for that festive look.
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by FIGJAM » Fri Aug 16, 2013 6:59 am

Just got these to light the mothership and boy are they bright! 8)

http://www.amazon.com/Waterproof-Flexib ... B005EHHLD8
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by FIGJAM » Wed May 28, 2014 7:23 am

Found a quick way to change colors on the small flashlights that are so popular on the playa.

This is a Cree single LED that takes 1 AA battery, but the diameter is pretty universal on these lights.

I cut a small piece of 1" PVC and a square of clothe.

The PVC sleeves perfectly onto the flashlight and with the clothe becomes nice and snug so it won't fall off! 8)

Image

Image

Image

Image

Now clip it wherever you want some decorative accents!!! 8)
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Sunbeam56
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by Sunbeam56 » Wed May 28, 2014 8:26 am

We lit the dome with a string of lights designed to be hung around an umbrella (one of those big put a table under it umbrellas). 5W to each bulb, 30 bulbs in the string. 150 W total. It was bright enough.

I didn't try cooking in the dome, tho.
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Ratty
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by Ratty » Wed May 28, 2014 8:37 am

I 'got by' with battery lights and solar things for years but last year I broke down and brought my propane coleman lantern. BIG improvement. Sometimes you just want to see. I probably only used it for an hour a night but it was worth bringing it and a couple of canisters.
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by MyDearFriend » Wed May 28, 2014 11:15 am

"Practical," in BRC, should include "prevents injury/destruction/heart-stopping surprise when returning impaired after dark." :lol: So for that, the strings of solar LED lights are perfect. Dust the little collector panels every few days and you are good from dusk till morning twilight. I use 3 100-bulb strings in my 25-foot monkey hut and one each for the 15-foot huts. For cooking or wound care I have battery-operated LED lantern.

The huge advantage of the solar lights is that they turn themselves on and off. I can't emphasize enough how truly helpful that is in BRC. One of those cheap fake candles, battery operated with a built-in timer, can reveal exactly how many people are already in my tent before I enter. :shock: :lol: :lol: :lol: And where my water bottle went!
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by unjonharley » Wed May 28, 2014 11:25 am

Best light for in tent and getting ready for bed is a head light.. Its not in your face and it looks where your looking hands free..
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MyDearFriend
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by MyDearFriend » Wed May 28, 2014 2:24 pm

unjonharley wrote:Best light for in tent and getting ready for bed is a head light.. Its not in your face and it looks where your looking hands free..
Unless you are in my tent, in which case: turn that damn thing off or find somebody else to sleep with. :lol: :lol: :lol: :?
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by unjonharley » Wed May 28, 2014 2:31 pm

Forgive me dear..I will use just braille.. Two dots hmmm?
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Mojojita
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by Mojojita » Wed May 28, 2014 3:40 pm

I always assign a "safety third" chief as one of the camp jobs in my camp and a part of the job is to make a sweep of the camp just before dark to remove any obstacles that can jump up and bite us after the sun sets.

Although I have used many different forms of battery and solar powered lighting over the years, I can't imagine not having a good propane lantern or two either in use or ready when needed. Headlamps are essential for trips to the potties 'cause having both hands free is a real happiness.

It's a really good idea to light or at least mark any guy lines with something shiny - I broke my wrist a few years ago falling over a camp's unlighted guy lines that were staked out to the edge of the street.
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by dietrichdr » Wed May 28, 2014 5:42 pm

A few years ago when I finally stopped buying led strings the count ended up at 127 strings of 70 or 100 lights each, several colors and matched with controllers was very awesome. We put about 10 strings in the shade structure and run them off the inverter all night, then the solar panels recharge the batteries during the day. More than enough light. 2012 we had a couple of light poles that went up 20 feet and were wound with led lights and run by controller so they had a moving up and down the pole cycle. People came by and told me that was how they found there way back to camp. This year we are building a 30 foot tower that will be lit with leds and climbable. 10"x10' base hd scaffolding. Stop by 630 and H and check it out. Camp Shit Ain't Right.

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unjonharley
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by unjonharley » Wed May 28, 2014 6:19 pm

How about two or so bright shinny clamp on reflectors with X power 110v LED bulbs..

Run it off a 50 watt lighter socket inverter.. Battery should last a few hours.

If I have to work around camp at night.. Its time to get the propane lantern out.. Get about six hours full on.. Replace the glass globe with a wire mesh at your sport goods store..
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by UNKLOYD » Sat Jun 21, 2014 7:51 pm

Check out " Goalzero.com" they have a 12 volt LED light it's called the Light-a Life . It can daisey chain and each one comes with a cigarette adapter.They are very bright and use only 3 watts, if you are handy you can buy just the bulb itself and put together your own 12 volt system.We use them at the kitchen and dining area and plan to get more.
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unjonharley
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by unjonharley » Sun Jun 22, 2014 7:46 am

I bought a 11 watt 110v LED bulb "equal to a 60 watt?".. Going to plug into a 75 watt inverter from big lead acid battery.. Want to know how much lighting hours.. I put the bulb in a 12 inch yard light reflector..
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Train Wreck
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by Train Wreck » Mon Jun 23, 2014 3:02 am

I've found that inadequate lighting is not only a pain in the ass, but it's dangerous. Having something you can turn on and leave on safely while out of camp is really nice, especially when you come stumbling home in the wee hours.

Might be worth investing in a deep cycle battery, a solar panel and charge controller, and some 12v rope light if you've got a sizable camp.

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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by AntiM » Mon Jun 23, 2014 6:09 am

We use a 12 volt fluorescent light fixture and a deep cell battery for when we need real light. We have the usual battery and solar suspects, and some mega-flashlights, but the light fixture illuminates the entire shade structure, just like it would a room in a house. They're made for RVs and boats.

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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by Oldguy » Tue Jun 24, 2014 4:43 pm

A Coleman 2 mantle that burns unleaded for outside and a Coleman 2 bulb fluorescent on 2 heavy duty 6 volt batteries for inside the tent. 16 solar garden LEDs for perimeter camp lighting. Fairy Christmas strings. Various handheld and clip on types, and large umbrella rings. Just the usual suspects, Rick. Play it again, Sam !
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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by vlajim » Thu Jun 26, 2014 2:09 pm

Years ago we started using kerosene lanterns. They output a nice soft light and everyone has headlights if they need to read something. For cooking dinner we use colman propane lanterns.

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Re: Practical Camp Lighting

Post by Rusted Iron » Thu Jun 26, 2014 9:51 pm

Solar and admittedly silly. It lights our camp's front door. Ordered the d-light from Amazon. It is very bright.
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