Non-Switch Start Query...

Topics relating to lighting control gear, including magnetic & high frequency ballast and ancilliary devices such as starters, ignitors and switchgear.
User avatar
versalift09
Posts: 97
Joined: Sun Oct 23, 2011 9:57 am
Area of interest: Street Lighting
Location: Plymouth

Non-Switch Start Query...

Postby versalift09 » Sat Jun 09, 2012 8:32 pm

Can any of you clued up guys explain to me which type of fluorescent gear is which? I know you have SRS and others, but I'm not 100% what's what. :oops:
In school there were 2 obvious different T12 types. (1st/2nd)
1ST- switch on the tube starts to very dimly flicker and gradually increase into full brightness over 2/3 secs. On failure, the lamp goes black at one end and just continues to flicker constantly very quickly and dimly (not like s/s flashing).

2ND- switch on the tube glows bright at each end and hums very loudly and lights very quickly. On failure, when it is switched on, the lamp glows at each end, hums very loudly and then cuts out before lighting fully. You cannot get it to ever light fully again.

3RD- some subway fittings we have from 80s. Have a Parmar starterless choke and capacitor in series. When switched on the lamp just lights after a second. No flashing at all.

If anyone can suggest what is what here i'd be much enlightened. :geek:
Davy

User avatar
MetalHalideHater
Posts: 162
Joined: Sat Jul 02, 2011 6:31 pm
Contact:

Re: Non-Switch Start Query...

Postby MetalHalideHater » Sat Jun 09, 2012 8:56 pm

1. I think sounds like SRS
2.SRS
3. hmm ??? Possibly some sort of SRS I think, but I'm not sure.
I'm not really sure.

User avatar
SuperSix
Posts: 660
Joined: Wed Jan 05, 2011 7:01 pm
Favourite Manufacturer: Fitzgerald
Area of interest: Fluorescent and Mercury Discharge Lighting
Oldest item: BTH 200W Carbon Filament Lamp
Location: Cambridgeshire
Contact:

Re: Non-Switch Start Query...

Postby SuperSix » Sat Jun 09, 2012 8:57 pm

Yes!

The first type you describe is typical of a semi-resonant start circuit, with double wound transformer and circuit capacitor.

Second type would be a vivatronic start circuit, with a series choke and electronic starting circuit.

Third type would also be semi-resonant start if the capacitor is part of the ballast circuit and it's not an 8 footer. Shorter lamps and new lamps generally start faster with SRS circuits.

User avatar
MetalHalideHater
Posts: 162
Joined: Sat Jul 02, 2011 6:31 pm
Contact:

Re: Non-Switch Start Query...

Postby MetalHalideHater » Sat Jun 09, 2012 8:59 pm

Ahwell, I'm surprised I got 2/3 to be honest.

User avatar
Paul
ATL Admin
Posts: 1303
Joined: Sun Jan 02, 2011 7:19 pm
Favourite Manufacturer: Thorn
Area of interest: Fluorescent battens and Thorn Vintage
Oldest item: 1890's Carbon Lamp
Location: Oxfordshire
Contact:

Re: Non-Switch Start Query...

Postby Paul » Sat Jun 09, 2012 9:04 pm

I agree with Eliot... 2nd deffo sounds like first gen. vivatronic.

User avatar
Kev
Posts: 1184
Joined: Wed Jan 05, 2011 10:32 pm
Favourite Manufacturer: Atlas and CourtneyPope
Area of interest: Discharge and Fluorescent
Location: Cornwall
Contact:

Re: Non-Switch Start Query...

Postby Kev » Sat Jun 09, 2012 11:41 pm

Yep I'm with Eliot bang on!!

User avatar
Globe Collector
Posts: 73
Joined: Tue Apr 24, 2012 12:37 pm
Favourite Manufacturer: General Electric Company of England
Area of interest: High Intensity Discharge Lamps_ Lamp Chemistry_Spe
Location: Hobart, Tasmania

Re: Non-Switch Start Query...

Postby Globe Collector » Sun Jun 24, 2012 6:02 am

The 2nd type sounds like switch-start to me.
That is, active lead in through choke, then through one cathode at one end of tube then out through the glow bi metallic starter, then finally through other cathode at other end of tube and out to neutral.

This type of circuit constitutes over 90% of inductively ballasted fluoro luminares in Australia. Sometimes two tubes (18/20W) are placed in series on one 40W choke, so the current path is, choke, cat Tube1, starter Tube1, cat Tube1, cat Tube2, starter Tube2, cat Tube 2, out to neutral.

The Quick Start (tubes with conductive strip) and semi resonant start, two tubes, often with earthed aluminium strip spring loaded against tube along its whole length and no bi-metallic glow starter are quite rare here and since I have never worked on any or pulled any apart, I don't know much about them. The only ones I ever recall seeing were in the electrical engineering labs ant the University of Tasmania.
The only real way to know for sure is to get your hands on one of each type of luminare, bring them home and get them on your bench. Draw the circuit diagram, fire them up and measure waveforms at various parts of the circuit while they are operating.

User avatar
Kev
Posts: 1184
Joined: Wed Jan 05, 2011 10:32 pm
Favourite Manufacturer: Atlas and CourtneyPope
Area of interest: Discharge and Fluorescent
Location: Cornwall
Contact:

Re: Non-Switch Start Query...

Postby Kev » Sun Jun 24, 2012 6:13 am

@GC No Eliot is correct 100%. The Thorn Vivatronic was basically a Switch start circuit but with a good reliable electronic starter. This also shut the lamp down in tube failure.
Most wire wound circuits here are also switch start. There are a few quickstart and SRS circuits left about but due to the recent communist retarded ban on T12 lamps they wont be for much longer. But No eliot is 100% correct.

User avatar
Paul
ATL Admin
Posts: 1303
Joined: Sun Jan 02, 2011 7:19 pm
Favourite Manufacturer: Thorn
Area of interest: Fluorescent battens and Thorn Vintage
Oldest item: 1890's Carbon Lamp
Location: Oxfordshire
Contact:

Re: Non-Switch Start Query...

Postby Paul » Sun Jun 24, 2012 9:08 am

I agree Kev, deffo the older style Vivatronic. The later versions didn't make the noise and were more like pulsestarters.

User avatar
sailormoon01uk
Posts: 315
Joined: Wed Feb 16, 2011 11:40 pm

Re: Non-Switch Start Query...

Postby sailormoon01uk » Sun Jun 24, 2012 4:05 pm

don't forget the vintage Thermal Starters, they wer basically a 4 pin Starter switch which has a small heater and thermal Switch the heater ran in series with the ballast to lamp or neutral to lamp, the thermal contacts operated in the same way as the starter switch as a Glow bottle starter, when the light was switched on the heater warmed the contacts, and afet a second the contacts opened thus striled the tube, this method was also employed on the early 200w SLI/H Lamp too

All the Best

Colin

Ash
Posts: 137
Joined: Tue Jun 12, 2012 8:28 pm
Area of interest: Any electricity and computer tech

Re: Non-Switch Start Query...

Postby Ash » Sun Jun 24, 2012 10:22 pm

Perfect Start ballasts, made by Knobel Ennenda Switzerland (AFAIK part of Tridonic nowadays) and Eltam Ein Hashofet Israel, are exactly what Sailormoon described

Quite a lot were installed here in "good" installations through the 70's / 80's, later became less common in favor of cheaper Switch Start

They preheat the lamp for 2-3 sec (time can vary with generations, production batches etc). Then the relay opens with a click and starts the lamp

With a faulty lamp it will sometimes just stay in the rapid-flicker mode like SRS do, sometimes after a while the relay will close again, preheat few seconds, and go to rapid flicker / total darkness again and so on, in constant intervals typically of few sec

Another dead giveaway of the Perfect Start ballast is, about 2 sec after you switch the light off there is a click of the relay closing

Later versions of the Perfect Start ballast (~1990 and up) substituted the thermal relay with electronic circuit (the ballast itself is still magnetic though). Maybe this is what Kev describes. Its behavior with good lamp is the same, but with EOL lamps quite unexpected. Sometimes it will flash wildly, flicker in SRS mode, make a T8 do a show that is more common to see with T12, or cycle with interval of few minutes like HPS


Return to “Control Gear”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest