Camp Lighting???

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Camp Lighting???

Postby mummeee74 » Sat Jan 13, 2007 9:00 pm

We discovered that our over 10yr old twin fluoro coleman whatsathingy just didn't cut it when trying to do the dishes after the munchkins were in bed. So we need some decent lighting.

Thought we would just go to our local supacheap and get a 240V small fluoro, no such luck they are all 12V. And the camping store only had small type ones. I guess we might have to go with a floodlight or something.

This got me thinking what does everyone else use?
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Postby Ozzycamperboy » Sat Jan 13, 2007 10:46 pm

Why do you want 240v?? Just get a supercheap 12v fluro, they dont draw much power.

Having said that I've always used a gas lantern, untill the glass and mantle broke :x . Now I got an unbreakable mesh cover, just need a new mantle :armsup . I like them cause to me, they just add to the atmoshpere. The dull glow, and faint hissing noise. Also use very little gas so a small bottle should last a week of camping easily.

Another option is the 'pump' up kero fuel ones, they are pretty exxy ($80 IIRC) but very sturdy and last a lifetime from what I've heard.
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Postby Scolers » Sun Jan 14, 2007 11:18 am

Don't you have gas?

We have gas lighting and it throws a good light.

Having said that I find the 'hisss' of the gas light a pain and am looking at some fluros (sp) ... the big Hardware stores have heaps. Start there and then check out places like Ranger/ BCF etc. It's what we did but still havent bought anything yet.

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Postby mummeee74 » Sun Jan 14, 2007 12:30 pm

Thought about gas but then we would probably need another bottle, we only have a small 4kg. Packing another bottle just for light seems crazy, I know I can get one of those splitter thingys. It's a possibility but I am kind of worried about little fingers, it stresses me enough when we are cooking and they are running around. Plus those mantles break easily don't they, I think we borrowed one years and years ago and found the mantles a hassle and expensive??

Will have a look at the hardware stores, I know a few electricians so as a last resort they can wire me one up, I just hoped there was something specially made with casing and a hook.

Sounds stupid but how do you run the 12V ones, from the cig lighter?
What about those rope lights I saw some people with, anyone seen them? Some even had xmas lights which was cute but perhaps a tad annoying for every camping trip!
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Postby Ozzycamperboy » Sun Jan 14, 2007 1:19 pm

mummeee74 wrote:
Sounds stupid but how do you run the 12V ones, from the cig lighter?


bingo :lol:

And mantles are cheap as, $5 for a pack of 3 or thereabouts. And I had one last me about 10 camping trips :armsup ,

If your worried about the lil fingers getting burnt, you can get extension poles, that raise the height of the Light, comes up to about chest height on an adult.

Or just use the fluro.
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Postby freerocketman1 » Sun Jan 14, 2007 2:19 pm

iam with you ozzy i have a gas light that i use for cooking thats on a poll thats also got a spliter on the bottom so i can hook the bbq up to, as for doing the dishes i have a 12volt fluro witch i use not just for that but lighting in the shower & annex.you may ask how does it reach, simple supercheep sells them jump starter packs that have a small light & a cigaret lighter socket on them works a treat can take the light anywhere & if worst happens & you have to work on the car at night you have a good light.
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Postby Komodo » Mon Jan 15, 2007 1:01 pm

Correct the 12v fluros power off a ciggarette lighter socket. or some of them come with a set of aligator clamps as well. As freerocketman1 said those jumper packs work a treat for powering these lights (we use on in the shed at the holiday house). The best thing about them is that you can charge them from the cigarette lighter of the car as you drive to your destination (might be a good idea to go for a drive every 3 days for a bit to give it a bit of a charge though as generally they are only small AH ratings about 17AH being about the std with 24AH for some of the larger ones.

Personally I think the best is the battery opperated fluro lanterns cause you can carry spare batteries they dont take up much room and its easier to change batteries than recharge often.

But going by the fact that you are talking about 240V power then i assume you go to van parks in which case colman make a good 240V one that ive seen other wise most speed shops sell 240V ones for working under the bonnet.

How handy is hubby?
A freind of mine bought off e-Bay a second hand 90aH deep cycle battery which he then built an MDF box and sealed it with fibreglass resin on the side of the box is an engel fridge socket and a pair of cigarette lighter sockets now its not light the box weighs in witht he battery at around 30Kgs but it lasts 5 days easy. He also has a tent pole that attaches to the box which has the light mounted on it. that plugs into one of the sockets and he has a spare one just in case he has any thing else (he may use it for his airbed pump).

This works excellently as he has used it for about 3 years now with no problems what so ever. He was organising an anderson plug set up for charging it whilst driving last time i spoke to him (he's away in WA 4x4ing atm)

The other option is - similar to the fluros you can get tube LED lights. These work excellently and most of them are rechargable. being LED they draw stuff all current and therefore I would assume last for ages - alot longer than a fluro would last. I have seen them at autobarn for about $60 60 LED light tubes kind of expencive when you concider they are just LEDs but all the same they are very good and todays LED technology allows for some very bright LED setups!

But I use the gas lantern on the pole with the gas stove on the bottom outlet even with a small size gas lantern this is exceptionally bright. The hiss does get a little annoying but for ease of use etc nothing beats it IMO. but now that I have the fridge and I need a battery for that I am looking towards LED / CCFL lighting and a solar panel. Mind you I'm also looking towards 24V setup rather than a 12V setup because the fridge runs more efficiently off 24V and thats my main power user at 3.5AH on 24V or 7.5AH on 12V
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Postby carpman » Sun Jan 21, 2007 10:01 pm

the colman dual fuel lantern was the best investment i ever made
cheap to run, the mantels are a lot tougher and take a few knocks unlike the usual mantels
and they pump out enough light to illuminate your whole camp site
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Postby mummeee74 » Mon Jan 22, 2007 9:19 am

Thanks for the advice everyone, you lost me somewhere along the way Komodo so I will have to get hubby to read your post!! :shock:
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Postby Komodo » Tue Jan 23, 2007 10:19 am

http://www.evakool.com.au/Torpedo/index.shtml

found this today might be of some interest
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Postby Blue Bravo » Tue Feb 27, 2007 8:39 pm

It depends on where I am. I have a cub camper and if in a caravan park I use the 12 volt light that came with the set up. I also carry a 240 volt fluoro for and I have now added a kambrook light that comes with a 240 plugs that I use outside and can power appliances, lap top etc.
For camping I have 12 volt fluoro run from a second battery in the vehicle as well as a gas light and a battery torch. Can't have too many options. :grin:
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Postby Otto » Wed Feb 28, 2007 7:34 am

I have the same setup as Freerocketman - Gas with splitter. When we are eating, doing the dishes, or when we arrive after dark, then I use the gas lantern. Other than those times I put it out and use a camp fire or kerosene lantern - better ambience....... ;)
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Postby Jok » Wed Feb 28, 2007 8:28 pm

I used to run a gas lantern, using a splitter and extension to raise the
light over the bbq, or sometimes just used a one kilo for the light only.
Only went through two or three mantles in about 15 years- went through
two glasses as well though!
Now I have two versa-lites, use about 1 amp per hour and throw
brilliant light. Made an extension lead for 12v, have 6-7 metres to play
with now. I like the fact that you can put these lights away quicky without
burning yourself- or anything else!
Note; I do have dual batteries in the wagon so no probs with power
supply. Have run 12v fans all night(3 of) without a prob so a light or
two for a few hours shouldn't cause any hassles.
As said earlier, the battery packs, thumper etc, will run the lights no
worries.
Also use a battery powered flouro lantern for midnight wanders.
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Postby Derek Bullock » Wed Feb 28, 2007 11:08 pm

I have two sources of lighting when in the bush:

1. The EvaKool 12v Torpedo Light. This little fluro is magic. It only draws .45amp per hour so it hardly draws anything from the battery. I use this inside the camper trailer http://www.evakool.com.au/Torpedo/index.shtml

2. My other lamp is a duel fuel Coleman twin mantle that I run with unleaded petrol. Very bright outdoor lamp this one that I have coupled with a Coleman Light Stand with the tripod legs.

Over many years I used gas lamps however gave up as gas is expensive and if you run out in the middle of nowhere you just cant get anymore whereas a jerry can of unleaded will last weeks and weeks.


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Postby reef » Thu Mar 29, 2007 11:15 am

We have 2 torpedo lights and bought the 240v adapters - they are so so great. We also have 2 Coleman remote tent lights which is great for our little ones for their room at night if they get scared or need to go to the loo. A solar battery charger just tops up the batteries in them when ever we need it.
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