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Battery lights for cases?


#1

I spent some time wading through the archives but didn’t come across
a quick answer so I’m going to put the question out to you now. I’m
going to do a few outdoor art festivals this summer where there will
be no electricity for us. I have the Allstate cases and I’m planning
to buy the clip on lights that are sold for the Allstate cases. Is
it possible for me to somehow get them hooked up to a portable
battery of some sort so I can light my cases? I did an art fair last
weekend and until the sun came around to light my cases my sales were
slow. Even though it was a bright day and there was plenty enough
light I would have benefited from lights in the cases. Any advice
about lights, batteries and how to hook them up would be appreciated.
Annette


#2

Hello Annette;

I have a suggestion on 2 different ways to go. I’ve used both in my
video work - depending on the circumstances.

1.) They do make bulbs that are rated for 12 volts for many different
fixtures. You may want to see if your lights will accept 12 volt
bulbs, A 12 volt car battery will then run bulbs for quite a while
(depending on the draw). There are cases for batteries that will make
them easier to handle, safer, and more attractive. Sporting goods
stores are where I’ve seen them before. Also boat stores. Truck
stores may also have them. The batteries could be recharged nightly
or while on a drive with a plug in cigarette lighter adapter.

An alternative. And this builds off of the original idea, and you
can not find 12 volt bulbs, is to buy a DC inverter for your lights.
That way you can power your normal 120 volt bulbs off of a 12 volt car
battery. It converts the 12 volt direct current into a 120 volt
alternating current (it does however come out as a square wave rather
than sine wave on most units). I purchased mine at an interstate truck
stop.

Hope this helps

Eric


#3

Hi Annette,

www.statpower.com makes battery packs that are already a complete
unit, with an inverter for regular household plugs built in, or a
cigarette lighter style plug for twelve volt lights, and you can
charge them by plugging in to the wall at home or to the cigarette
lighter in your car while you travel. (You can even jump start your
car with one…) They’re all sealed and self contained. It seems
easier and maybe a little safer to me than lugging around a loose
battery. Their ‘buy online’ button will kick you over to store4power,
the factory outlet section usually has an older version of the small
xpower 300 (powerpac) for about a hundred bucks. We use one in our
camper.

Wow, I just found some suggested lights for those cases, anything
besides the ‘micro halogen lights’ are pretty intense. Even the bigger
xpower 600 (closer to $300) might not be enough if you use several
lights all day. The powerpac/xpower units can be attached directly to
a bigger battery with their jumper cables. But I don’t know how much
more that would be than getting a separate battery, inverter, and
charger. Cost vs. convenience might not be worth it. (Shoot, I thought
I had an easy answer for you with the battery packs!) You could email
them with your needs though and see what they think.

I don’t know how to put it all together, but I do know some of what
you’d need, like a deep cycle battery. (Marine, rv, and golf cart
batteries are deep cycle, I think.) A car starting battery is made for
big surges of power, not for slow steady drain. And you’d want a
sealed battery for more safety. I would think a battery in a battery
box on some kind of small cart. Cables and connectors to go from the
battery to a socket for the cigarette lighter type plug on the
inverter. (if they’re lights that take household current…) I think
deep cycle batteries need a special type of charger but I’m not sure.
On rereading, this seems pretty simplistic, there’s probably more
involved.

I’ve reread this and it looks confusing to me hope it makes sense to
someone else.

Laura