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Interior Lighting

The original light fixtures in the cabin of the Alberg 35 have bulbs that look like household incandescents. While they throw adequate amount of light, they consume a lot of power and generate lots of heat. It would be nice to have lighting that was a little easier on the amp-hour budget.

New fixtures with LED bulbs are expensive, so I thought I'd try a replacement bulb, first, but even these can go for $50 each -- or more. Since there are 9 fixtures, that adds up quickly.

2011/07/17 - A search on the Internet produced bulbs priced at $9.95, including shipping. I'd never heard of the supplier before, so I ordered one to try them out. A week later, a bulb showed up on my doorstep.

2011/07/24 - A 3 watt LED replacement bulb for the interior cabin fixtures arrived in the mail on Saturday. The good news is that the bulb does fit and seems to work well, but is a little dimmer than the 25 watt incandescent bulb I compared it to.

To the left is the regular bulb and the LED bulb is shown on the right. Note the different color of the LEB bulb (cooler, not as yellow) as the incandescent. The LED is also more directional, not throwing as much light onto the ceiling. Based on this test, I'll probably try a 5 watt LED bulb to see how it compares.

2011/07/26 - Checked the specifications of the bulbs and the 3 watt LED bulb throws 240 lumens at a color temperature of 3500K. I ordered a 5 watt bulb (450 lumens, 6000K) to test and compare. Will post results when I receive it. So far, I've had good luck with this bulb vendor (Tmart.com) and the cost is significantly lower than others.

2011/08/11 - The 5-watt bulb arrived earlier in the week and I finally had a chance to take it to the boat to compare with the 3-watt bulb. While brighter, the bulb is significantly larger and heavier, with an aluminum body, presumably to help dissipate heat. The light is significantly "cooler" with a noticably different color (more blue). Like the smaller bulb, it is also somewhat directional.

2011/08/15 - I went back to the web site to order a batch of the "warm" white bulbs only to discover that they had been discontinued. A search found a reasonable replacement. The bad news is that these are the "cool" white bulbs, but the good news is that they are configured to be less directional than the original prototype and they're cheaper as well. I guess I can put up with the cooler light in exchange for the improved coverage these bulbs provide.

2011/08/22 - The bulbs arrived and I had a few moments to install them in the fixtures on the boat. They work well and I'm happy with the selection I made. The boat can now be fully illuminated and use less power than two of the old incandescent bulbs.