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PostPosted: Sun Nov 21, 2021 10:35 am 
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Phosco152 wrote:
If they are motor run then they will be fine. Don't use any marked as motor start as those are only designed to be connected to the mains for a few seconds.

I've just got it running for the first time, the warming up time from dull pink to full yellow is around 10 minutes then I could barely open my eyes lol. And the one thing that is slightly bothering me is the capacitor, here is the label on the motor running capacitor

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It's about 150v more than the original capacitor Philips suggested, which was 20uf 300v, will using a capacitor higher than 300v overdriving the lamp? Should I keep finding the one that is closer to 300v or it doesn't matter?


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 21, 2021 6:18 pm 
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Voltage is maximum working voltage that the capacitor can withstand. It needs to be equal or higher than the voltage specified by Philips. It is not the actual circuit voltage, so its perfectly adequate for the job.

180W SOX is too bright to look at close up when fully warmed up.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 28, 2021 5:48 pm 
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Phosco152 wrote:
Voltage is maximum working voltage that the capacitor can withstand. It needs to be equal or higher than the voltage specified by Philips. It is not the actual circuit voltage, so its perfectly adequate for the job.

180W SOX is too bright to look at close up when fully warmed up.

Thank you for the advice.

Btw, I've got a few 18W ballast for two foot fluorescent lamp to run the 18W SOX-E lamps, since the small one runs really hot after like 10 minutes of operation, I've decided to source for different one, here there is

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I don't have a meter to test at the moment but the long one above with red etch is 0.36A that's as close as one can match 18W SOX running current, it also solve the heat issues as after running it for hours it only get warm that you could still touch the ballast without burning your hand. My question is why is the size difference although having the same spec and power ratings?

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The smallest one gets the hottest running temperature, with only 10 minutes of running it gets too hot to be touched, and it fills the room with burn smells so I decided to add a heatsink with a small fan on top of it but it's still gets way too hot. But the larger one seems to be able to handle the lamp and doesn't get hot.

I also connect the ballast to a 70W Philips classic halogen lamp and the small ballast and the Philips medium size ballast at the middle seems to light the lamp up to the same level of brightness, but the longest one ballast above light up the lamp about 20% brighter? Other test are I hooked up the ballast to a 70W son lamp with build in ignitor, the smallest ballast has been able to start the lamp with just a few clicks, Everytime. But the bigger 18W ballasts has failed at every attempts as the glow starter inside the lamp keep on clicking but the arc wouldn't established.

Is there a possibility that I am overdriving the SOX with that large size 18W fluorescent ballast? :(


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 29, 2021 4:45 am 
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A ballast is just an inductor. Inductance depends primarily on the quality of the iron core and the magnetising current. A better core needs less current, and hence smaller windings both in length and the diameter of the wire.

I would expect the Philips ballast to be the highest quality of the 3. The smallest ballast may well have the wrong inductance - a core too small. Given its size is so different to the other 2, I wouldn't expect it to be a "quality" item.

Ballasts can run hotter than is safe to touch. The tell tale is the Tw figure - temperature working, the Philips one is actually 120 degrees C rather than 105 for the large one. The figure is a maximum and in many cases won't actually be reached.

SOX lamps are remarkably tolerant of incorrect current, they will still run but with reduced life, however I would use the Philips ballast. You really need to be testing them with 18W fluorescent lamps for comparison - which are easy and cheap to find.

A halogen lamp is a resistive load, so totally unsuitable and a 70W SON lamp voltage and current rating is completely different - the lamp rating is almost 4 times greater than that the ballast was designed for.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 29, 2021 5:32 pm 
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You are brilliant at these stuff, I've still have a lot to learn and thank you again.

I've just test run with the Philips ballast for the first time, the run up time is > 10 minutes compare to the bigger unbranded ballast which is < 6 minutes, I also notice some noise from the lamp as soon as I switched it off, it sounds like the internal spring contracting or something like that, this is the 18W SOX-E from Belgium, the date code indicates that it was fabricated in 1994, the bottom support is metal too, at 12-15 minutes mark I can hear it "ting" quite a little bit, sounds like tube expanding and pressing against the metal parts.

Also this Philips ballast runs hot very quickly too, but not as quickly as the small one. One other small details are there seems to be quite noticeable flickering from the lamp when running with the Philips or the small ballast, the flickering happened during warm up, and settles down after 20 minutes and no more flickering after that, both ballast were rated 0.37A and the light colour seems to be a little more orange, too.

As far as I observed the lamp doesn't flicker one bit when used with the long ballast, and the light were also "yellower" too.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2022 12:37 pm 
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Would it be OK for me to operate the 55W SOX with the SX76 ignitor? I cannot find the SX72 ignitor anymore but I could get the SX76 which is designed to operate the 90W SOX.

I saw the label on the SX72 for 55W SOX, it says 0.7 to 1kV which is the same as the SX76 for 90W SOX. Even the SX26 designed for 18-35W has the same rating. At worst I could imagine that the ignitor couldn't sense the lamp already start due to wrong lamp voltage and keep igniting thus cause early failure?


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2022 4:42 pm 
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Yes you are correct in your assumption that the ignitor may not detect the lamp has already started based on voltage across the lamp. However, the Philips ignitors do include  a component that will switch off the ignitor if it repeatedly tries to start the lamp - to protect the gear from a failed lamp for instance.

A higher rating SOX lamp needs a bigger strike voltage, but will be ok to start a smaller lamp.

I suspect, it will be fine.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 25, 2022 10:52 am 
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SOXjuice wrote:
Would it be OK for me to operate the 55W SOX with the SX76 ignitor? I cannot find the SX72 ignitor anymore but I could get the SX76 which is designed to operate the 90W SOX.

I saw the label on the SX72 for 55W SOX, it says 0.7 to 1kV which is the same as the SX76 for 90W SOX. Even the SX26 designed for 18-35W has the same rating. At worst I could imagine that the ignitor couldn't sense the lamp already start due to wrong lamp voltage and keep igniting thus cause early failure?

I've ran the 55W on 90W ignitor to full brightness, one thing I've noticed that the ballast remains noisy even when the lamp fully warmed up, if used with the SX72 55W ignitor, it's only noisy during the ignition/starting phase but when the lamp warmed up it become quiet, but the SX76 ignitor for 90W seems to be constantly interfering with the ballast, because as soon as I removed the ignitor from the circuit the ballast no longer hums lol, the lamp stayed lit though after the removal of the ignition unit.


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