Letter: Converting Edison Lamps to 12 VDC

Jim,
Would you mind offering a link for a 12-volt bayonet mount adapter [for standard 120 Volt AC floor and table  lamps to use automotive interior and tail lights] that you referenced in your novel Patriots?

Thanks, – Marc

JWR Replies:

Marc:
Sadly, those bulb adapters are no longer cataloged by Real Goods. These days, with the profusion of inexpensive LEDs on the market, I would instead opt for Edison base 12 VDC LED conversions. This makes sense because LEDs draw so much less current than traditional automotive filament bulbs, and they have a much longer service life.

NOTE: These are NOT 120 VAC-compatible. These have the standard Edison bulb threaded base, but they run on 12 VDC.

I like this arrangement, because you can convert you favorite old desk lamp, swag lamp, or floor lamp to 12 VDC without having to change any wiring–other than the plug, of course. For that, I recommend using genderless Anderson Power Pole connectors, to avoid any confusion.

If for some reason you decide to revert your conversion, you can just cut off the Anderson Power Pole connector, re-install a 120 VAC plug, and install a 120 VAC bulb. – JWR

 




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