Colored Fluorescent

Hi there, My first time posting here, but have been reading the website for a long time. Recently I have been fascinated with lights and light art. I have been a fan of Dan Flavin for awhile and love the way he uses fluorescent lights.  One question I have is, how do I achieve colored fluorescent lights? I have done a bit of research and a few people have suggested cellophane wrapped tubes, but I'm concerned that this might burn / melt, and may look slightly amateur?  Any help would be much appreciated. I have attached a couple of examples below. L

Posted by litelunch 5 years ago  |  last reply 5 years ago

Fluorescent Plants

Recently I presented a science teacher in my school, Mr. Zhang with the idea of growing plants with tonic water which contains quinine to see if they would glow under a black light. Today we saw that these bean sprouts had defused and taken in the tonic water, as a result the bean sprouts were fluorescent under the black light. I first chose the mung bean / bean sprout because I know that bean sprouts are translucent and it would be easier to see the glow, but now I want to find out if the seed will take in the quinine, and if so would the quinine be in the flesh of the plant at all. Another test that Mr. Zhang and I were considering was to use a tonic water in a hydroponic system to see if the plants utilize the quinine. Dr. Paul Williams suggested that I grow fastplants in the dark, because their stem is translucent is grown in the dark. (Mr. Zhang knew him from a workshop he did involving fastplants) I'll be updating this as I continue the study, I'll start growing very soon, as soon as I order the supplies that are necessary. The picture below, is of two mung beans, the one on the left took in the quinine, and the one of the right is normal.

Posted by astrozombies138 10 years ago  |  last reply 10 years ago

submersible fluorescent light

I am wanting to build this without the $189 price tag. i have found a site with the plans and pvc fittings, here , but not saving much money there either. anyone got any ideas?i will be running on a 12v battery

Posted by bigbeardan1983 10 years ago  |  last reply 10 years ago

Fluorescent lighting scultpure?

Does anyone know how to make a sculpture using multiple fluorescent bulbs? I've seen a few and they always have small caps and wiring on the ends, but they look like standard products you could pick up somewhere.

Asked by anthony_j 7 years ago  |  last reply 4 years ago

Need an expert in Fluorescent lamps to end an argument Answered

My knowledge on fluorescent bulbs is limited, but still more than the average layperson.  A gentleman at work claims that by touching the contacts of a 9V to the electrode contacts on one end of a fluorescent bulb, one would recieve a shock at the opposite end if a tounge were applied.  I don't believe this is true, but don't have the difinitive knowledge to back it up.  Help Me!!!

Asked by kretzlord 5 years ago  |  last reply 5 years ago

Fluorescent Lamp

Here is an art project from some designers that I came across and have been trying to reverse engineer. If anyone has any idea's on how to power and connect the fluorescent tube it would be greatly appreciated! Here is a description from the web:  Design duo Mischer’Traxler, Wien | Austria, started their project to focus on light sources and came up with the idea to combine two lamps into one. This way they created a new design that uses a energy-efficient fluorescent tube bulb and gives the lamps a whole new character. The name of this lamp is ‘Relumine‘ and plays on the fact that we all have to switch from old light bulbs to new energy saving light sources. The fun and challenge is to combine different type of lamps, like a hanging pendant with a floor lamp, a floor lamp with a desk lamp or different heights and hardware. Each Relumine uses two, discarded lamps, which are disassembled, sanded, newly lacquered and adapted with newer technology, before they are connected by a glass tube which holds the fluorescent tube. Together these two lamps need less energy than each one in its previous life.

Posted by dan.d 5 years ago  |  last reply 5 years ago

Help with T5 Fluorescent Light

I'm adding a 9" T5 UV light to a small project I'm making. I found a cheap G6T5 Bulb and a Ballast but when I went to purchase the Sockets for it, I ran into a problem. The Bi-pin T5 sockets come in Shunted & Non Shunted and I have no idea which one I need. What is the difference and how would I tell which one to buy to finish my light? Once I have all this I'll have to figure out how to wire the thing. But first I need to know which sockets I need to buy. THANKS!!

Posted by mrreno 10 years ago  |  last reply 10 years ago

Does the length of a fluorescent tube matter? Will a shorter fluorescent tube work in a longer fixture?

Assuming the wattage is the same. I have some 15" fluorescent tubes. Will they work in fixtures made for longer tubes if the wattage is the same?

Asked by conrad141 3 years ago  |  last reply 3 years ago

Neon / fluorescent / phosphorescent ingredients for ceramics

Hi all, Just wondering if anyone knows of any minerals, or products that will produce a visible fluoro colour in daylight, or phosphorescent in the dark. I want to be able to either use these as glaze or as stain for clay slip.

Posted by jarris 4 years ago  |  last reply 3 years ago

fluorescent emergency lamp convert to LED

I have a fluorescent lamp input220v,6.5w, its battery is 6.9v. i want to convert this to led lamp. so pls provide the proper circuit diagram for this. and how many LEDs can handle this battery for 4hours 

Asked by s.sushin 8 years ago  |  last reply 8 years ago

Fluorescent tube starter question

I m really really curious about something you know the starter switch used in fluorescent tubes have a glass "bulb/tube" with a bimetalic strip i know what that is for but i dont understand what the coil beside the "bulb/tube" is for, and it feels like a coil but i think its more of a piece of metal wrapped i n plastic  

Posted by michaelgohjs 8 years ago  |  last reply 8 years ago

CFL torch?

Is the size and operating voltage of a CFL the only resaon that they aren't used in hand held flashlights?

Asked by .Unknown. 8 years ago  |  last reply 8 years ago

CFL (compact fluorescent light)?

Hey everyone, Not too sure if this is the ideal place to post, if not please forgive me :) Basically, I want the spiral type CFL safely cleaned and emptied so I can use it. - I couldn't find a place selling 'recycled' ones or similar, I also dislike the idea of doing it myself and getting mercury all over me :(. I am thinking of contacting some manufacturers to see if they would sale me some defective ones that haven't been filled with nasty stuff :). Just wondering if anyone knew of a place where I can get them, hassle free. I'm a UK lad though, to make things harder :) any help much appreciated as always.

Posted by lukus001 10 years ago  |  last reply 9 years ago

parallel light bulbs? Answered

Is there any way of connecting multiple fluorescent light bulbs *THIS* to 1 power plug....i'm a newb, so if this is pretty complicated, i'm gonna need some articles :) the reason i ask this is because i'm thinking about constructing a (full room) black light in it's own sweet casing. it would go around my whole room around the perimeter (around the upper edge, touching the ceiling) so ya...i have enough construction knowledge to build the casing and everything else, BUT i do not know hardly anything about electrical stuff...which is why i have you guys :) so ya...any help (or different solutions other than light bulbs) would be greatly appreciated. thanks :)

Asked by miqt 9 years ago  |  last reply 9 years ago

Something to block office lighting?

The office building where I work has a conference room that has 4 fluorescent light units, each measuring 28” by 44”.  The problem is, one of the four light units is an emergency unit, and is always turned on.  So when we want to show power point presentations, etc.  the room is never  fully dark.  With the 3 lights being off, it’s just barely dark enough, and it would be so much better not to have the light from the emergency unit.  Due to safety codes, turning off this light is not a realistic option for us.  So I was examining it today and was wondering if someone had an idea to construct some sort of temporary “cover” that we can quickly and securely place over this one light unit while we have our power point presentations?  The cover would have to be lightweight, secure (we would not want it to fall on any clients!), and I think made of some sort of fireproof material, in case someone forgets it’s up there and the heat from the florescent light tubes doesn’t cause any danger of fire.  Each light unit has this metal “grid” that I guess is meant to reflect and disperse the light in an efficient way.  This “grid” is made up of smooth 1/8” metal strips, which create 24 empty space “cells”. The inside of the cells measures 7”X5.5” and is 2.75” deep.  There is a small clearance between this metal grid and the fluorescent tube lights.  And the light unit is 10 feet off the ground. Any suggestions??  Thanks!

Posted by jim5150jvc 7 years ago  |  last reply 7 years ago

Joule thief running a CFL?

I've seen a lot of videos of people making joule thieves to power CFLs, with only one or two cells. (These actually work, right?) However, most of them require large (larger than a soda can) inductors and/or ignition coils and transformers. Is there any joule thief (or circuit) out there capable of running a CFL at full brightness, with around 6V, but at the same time being as small and uncomplicated as possible?

Asked by .Unknown. 8 years ago  |  last reply 5 months ago

Is the strength of blacklight Flourescence proportionate to the strength of the source, or is there a threshold?

Say I have a black light hooked up to a dimmer switch and a material that fluoresces under black light. As I gradually increase the 'brightness' of the black light, can I expect the fluorescent material to fluoresce gradually brighter, or is there a definite 'threshold' below which there is no fluorescence? Will the same hold true for IR-fluorescent materials and IR sources? Thanks in advance!

Asked by lcllam 9 years ago  |  last reply 9 years ago

how do I build a fluorescent lamp ?

I want to turn a high end glass vase into a fluorescent lamp.

Asked by sailormark 3 years ago  |  last reply 3 years ago

Help upgrading CFL circuit? Want to drive cfl's up to 25w.

Hello I have built this circuit, it can drive cfl's up to 15w, how do i modify it so that it can drive cfl's up to 25w?  I am using D313 for his project as the D882 didn't gave me the results i needed. Using 12v battery. Here is the original instructable link (This question is optional) Do u think the transformer i made for this circuit can be used for the famous Jeanna's light (Joule's Thief). If yes then how it would connect on the circuit? I will be making two or three more transformers like this. Do u think it needs modifications for its working like number of turns for the primary, secondary and feedback, different wire gauge?

Posted by Clarkdale44 4 years ago  |  last reply 4 years ago

New ballast (starter) on overhead fluorescent lights causing static on AM radio reception - how to fix?

Ballast (starter) recently replaced on overhead fluorescent lights. Now getting static on AM radios in my apartment. Is there a way to stop this?

Asked by verbatim5613 9 years ago  |  last reply 8 years ago

I need an invisible fluorescent/luminous paint?

I need paint that phosphoresces under black light, in either a white or red, but is invisible under normal light. Bonus if it washes out after use.

Asked by Lord Skudley 9 years ago  |  last reply 8 years ago

how to make fluorescent light glow with tesla coil from 3 metre distance?

Hi so i've watched a lot of youtube videos on how to glow fluorescent light using tesla coil but the problem is that i want to increase the distance between the fluorescent light and the tesla coil to 3 metre

Asked by OmarB8 3 years ago  |  last reply 3 years ago

What UK fluorescent light starter should be used to make a incandescent bulb flicker? (Halloween effect)

What UK fluorescent light starter should be used to make a incandescent bulb flicker? (Halloween style effect) Example In the above tutorial it lists the following starters work FS-2 and FS-5 but I cant find the UK equivalent. Thanks for your help

Asked by danieljcooper 6 years ago  |  last reply 6 years ago

What's the cheapest way to run all these F15T8 fluorescent tubes?

I have a bunch of F15T8 fluorescent tubes, and I want to make my own light fixture with something like 4-8 of them running at the same time. Doing some research has shown me that I need a ballast. Nearly all of the ballasts I found online for f15t8 were only for 1 or 2 lamps, and I don't really want to buy more than one. Is there any way I can use a ballast rated for a higher watt bulb or something? What happens if you put a F15T8 in a F32T8 ballast? 

Asked by conrad141 3 years ago

How to make florescent ink?

I have Googled and searched Wiki on how to make fluorescent (ultraviolet) inks. I want to know how to make them. I dont want th lemon juice , corn starch, milk or other types of invisible inks. I want to make the stuff the glows under uv light. I searched using uv, ultraviolet, fluorescent inks but couldnt find anything other than the lemon juice and other types of "invisible" writing. Please help if you know where to find or if you know how to make fluorescent (ultraviolet) inks. You can email me at I mean the inks that u can buy for handstampers and that are put in invisible ink markers. I want to make the stuff myself and not have to buy it off the internet.... So while yes there are alot of things that glow under UV, I want it in liquid form.

Posted by WhiteThatch 10 years ago  |  last reply 6 years ago

Tesla Coil Power Supply Question?

Does anyone think I can use a florescent tube ignition/driver circuit to power a tesla coil (small). What I mean is that can I basically take out a fluorescent tube from its socket and plug in my wirings for the primary coil (capacitors and spark gap included). I don't know how high the voltage or the current is coming out of one of those things. Can anyone help? Thanks Please answer quickly, time is of the essence. 

Asked by transistorguy 8 years ago  |  last reply 8 years ago

Can a fluorescent light ballast be used to drive a Tesla Coil?

I'm thinking of the newer 'magnetic' high-frequency ones, or maybe even a CFL ( Of course a ~15 Watt CFL isn't going to output very much though.

Asked by PhahQ 9 years ago  |  last reply 9 years ago

can a fluorescent light be connected in series to another tube on the same ballast?

Im trying to add more bulbs a  fitting thats designed for 1

Asked by andybuda 8 years ago  |  last reply 8 years ago

EL wire phosphor vs fluorescent bulb phosphors? Answered

What is the difference between the phosphors used in fluoro tubes and the phosphors used in EL wire? Can the 2 types be used interchangeably? i.e can smash open (and should I smash open) a CFL bulb to get the phosphors inside to make EL wire? How well would it work? (If at all)

Asked by .Unknown. 7 years ago  |  last reply 7 years ago

Glowy Umbrella

I had an idea today I thought would be interesting after reading about this - - how about integrating a fluorescent tube into the handle of an umbrella. If the tube was supported inside an acrylic clear (or coloured) tube and had some kind of connection to the handle and to the tip of the umbrella, then when walking under pylons, in a storm (eek?!), or in any situation where there would be a big potential difference between something above the user and earth. This could be interesting near tram/train lines.What do people think?

Posted by macmaniac 9 years ago  |  last reply 9 years ago

strobe light solutions...? Answered

Ok. so i have 2 ideas brewing in my head, but of course, i don't have the knowledge to do them :) ....which is why i have instructables. ok, anyways, so i have a very BASIC knowledge about LED's and such, and so my first idea is to make a strobe light with about 10 led's (in a nice reflective casing) and i guess a programmed timer, BUT i have absolutely NO idea how to program micro-controller's or w/ idk if that's the best option, SO i then had an idea of just getting some old lamps from goodwill ( the best ) with some new Fluorescent Light Bulbs and somehow putting a timer on it for every like .6 seconds or something......i'm not sure how complicated this is...and that's why i am asking. so which one would give better results, and which one would be easier to do (if even possible). (or any other solution for strobe light) and what exactly do i need and how do i do it...ha. i know...everyone hates these questions from newbs trying to make a huge thing lol. JUST STICK TO THE SIMPLE, NEWB!!! (that was what i would imagine a comment sounding like :)

Asked by miqt 9 years ago  |  last reply 9 years ago

Fluorescent light wiring diagram wanted

Fluorecent light wiring diagram:Could anyone help me with a wiring diagram for a fluorescent light, double tube, tube have 2 ins each side, two starters a capacitor and a ballast with two wires. I have all the parts but don't know how to join them together?

Asked by Sa Wolf 8 years ago  |  last reply 8 years ago

SDf Answered


Asked by baudeagle 9 years ago  |  last reply 9 years ago

Way to control two fluorescent bulbs in the same fixture individually?

I would like to set up a few fluorescent light fixtures that each have one blacklight bulb and one white bulb. I would like to be able to control them individually so that I can have either the blacklight bulb or the white bulb on at any given time. It would be preferable to be able to dim the white bulbs, but this isn't necessary. I am okay with running a 14/3 power cable assuming two ballasts would fit in one fixture. I would also like to accomplish this as cheaply as possible.  Thank you.

Asked by natedawg1013 4 years ago  |  last reply 4 years ago

How do you build a fluorescent light from scratch and have it plug into the classic American outlet?

I am not asking how to build the bulb. Just attach the bulb+ballasts+plug it in. I want to build several letters out of fluorescent light bulbs, for example one letter is O but it will look more like []. I want to use bulbs that are 2-4 feet long or what ever is easiest... from scratch (without buying light fixtures and taking them apart). Each letter will be constructed of 4 lights. I know that I will need to solder parts together, I will need to buy ballasts, and bulbs... But construction wise I am semi lost. Also I would like recommendations as to how many ballasts for the bulbs, I don't mind if some of the bulbs flicker. Lastly I want the bulbs to make that humming noise so if you have any idea how I can induce that other then leaving the ballasts running for a while please tell me. Thanks, -Oliver

Asked by Art-ist 9 years ago  |  last reply 9 years ago

DNA Plasmids for use in transformation of plant cells? Answered

Recently, I found a kit to transform E. coli with GFP (green fluorescent protein) plasmids, causing the bacteria to fluoresce under UV light. I later found a kit for maintaining an African violet tissue culture, sparking the question if it would be possible to use the plasmids intended for use in E. coli in the African violet tissue, causing the violet tissue to fluoresce, which can then be transplanted to grow into a full glowing violet plant. Would the plasmids be usable in transforming the violet tissue, or would they be specialized to just the E. coli?

Asked by ALogan97 6 years ago  |  last reply 6 years ago

Is it possible to build a spark gap using a fluorescent light ballast?

This is for a school project. We need to build a spark plug out of an LRC circuit and a 1.5 V D size battery. I was hoping to do it with a fluorescent light ballast as an inductor. The longer the spark in distance, the better.  Thanks.

Asked by paul0 8 years ago  |  last reply 8 years ago

LED Light Box

Normally, a light box uses fluorescent lamps (e.g. 36 watts Philips Lamp) and electronic ballasts to emit light. However, it consumes too much electricty and the life of lamps is short. Therefore, I would like to replace fluorescent lamps with LEDs.

Asked by richardkartono 9 years ago  |  last reply 6 years ago

9W Fluorescent U-Tube Bulb w/ 6V 4Ah Battery

Hi Guys! I would like to create a sort of emergency light with the following... 9watt fluorescent u-tube bulb 6volts 4Ah sealed lead-acid battery HP AC Power adapter (input : 100-240v | output : +32volts 625mA I'm not really good with electronics... please be so kind with me :)...  I'm wondering what will be the things needed here to create the following battery charger and to power up the 9watt bulb Thanks a lot in advance

Posted by acl_20032003 4 years ago  |  last reply 4 years ago

Flourscent Light Sickness

Every time I walk into Wal-Mart or Home Depot, I get sick because of the fluorescent light. The problem is, almost every large retailer uses fluorescent lighting. I get migraines, and queasiness. It has a great impact on my life. I was only curious to see if anyone else on instructables had such a sickness. If you do have such a sickness, what Do you do about it? My new school has all fluorescent lighting. -sunglasses? -migraine medication? (although that would not do much for the sick to the stomach feeling) I call it Wal-Mart sickness.

Posted by littlechef37 10 years ago  |  last reply 10 years ago

Laptop LCD Cold Cathode re-use

So recently, an old laptop of mine died. It was an old dinosaur of a laptop, slowly running down the remaining years of its life. Then it died. So sad. To honor its death I dismantled it. I got an interesting motherboard, some decent speakers, a 5gb harddrive along with a floppy and disk drive. What really interested me the most though is the LCD screen. At first I hoped that I could re-used the screen as a tertiary screen for my desktop, but later I realized the near-impossibility of this task and gave it up. Instead I chose to take the screen apart for its cold cathode lamp. It's almost 12 inches in length, and very thin. Before the motherboard died, the LCD back light was still working. So I wanted to take it out, along with its inverter, to attempt to re-use it. Soon after doing this I saw a problem in my plans: the input of the inverter is a whopping nine wires. This is a bit more than I'm used to dealing with for power supplies. I was wondering if you guys knew any way that I could go around this? At request I can most more pictures and model number of the inverter in case you can't read it in the photo. tl;dr - Cold cathode inverter in picture. output is two wires, input 9 wires. How do I use this

Posted by Pixel_Master 7 years ago

How to make a led lamp?

Light should be equal to a 40watts fluorescent tube?and whether it would be a vice idea, ?

Asked by roshan2 9 years ago  |  last reply 9 years ago

Fluorescent-tube digital clock

I'm thinking around building a massive digital clock with fluorescent tubes.Starting with a basic digital clock, the output to LED segments would be put through transistors, to 12v relays, acting upon the mains feed to the tubes.However, some segments will be on more than they are off. I'd rather have the relays using power to switch to the less frequently used position, but I can't find an easy way to figure-out which segments spend more time off than on (and vice versa).any ideas?Did some calculations to produce the graphs. Based upon 4W tubes, surely the smallest available?) and 12V 50mA relays.

Posted by lemonie 11 years ago  |  last reply 10 years ago

Tesla Coil Safety?

My high school recently had an engineering fair, and my friend had built a tesla coil. Its has multiple spark gaps, an RF filter (I think thats what its called), a 120 to 20000v transformer, and toroid top-load, if any of that matters. We/I would entertain ourselves by standing away from the coil and holding a fluorescent tube (by the glass with bare hands, not by the contacts) near the top-load and watching it light up. Even though I was well away from the coil, my forearm muscles would twitch, especially it the coil spark hit the contact on the other side of the tube. Then if anybody touched me, both of us would feel a shock and the same slight twitching (the same kind of twitching you feel from those electric muscle stimulators with the pads you put on sore muscles). We even set up a chain of about 5 people holding hands, and all of us would feel a shock, even though only the first person in the line (aka me)  was holding the fluorescent tube near the coil, with my hand on glass, no where within range of the streamers coming from the top-load. Now for my question: is this dangerous? (I know its non-lethal, im talking about my nerves) And what exactly was happening? because it was not an incredibly large coil, and i know that the field of a coil is much larger than the actual streamers. I also read somewhere that insulators dont work the same at incredibly high voltages. I think what I was feeling was the skin effect, and the charge came from the excited electrons in the tube. If my ideas are correct, then wouldn't me holding the tube be just the same as if i had just put my hand near the top-load and let the streamers hit me?

Asked by masterbuilder 5 years ago  |  last reply 5 years ago

replacing balast in flouresent light fixture?

Looking for instruction on replacing ballast in fluorescent fixture in my kitchen. Also the drop ceiling panels are going to be replaced. How should I cut to fit?

Asked by paulinoB 9 years ago  |  last reply 9 years ago

UV Surface Mount LEDs

I am currently modifying an iBook G3 so that, among other things, it will be fluorescent orange. Currently, when the computer sleeps, a white LED illuminates through the casing. Since the casing will now be fluorescent, I would like to replace the white surface mount LED with an ultraviolet one, so that the case will glow as the computer is sleeping. I was wondering if someone could help me out by telling me where I might be able to purchase an ultraviolet surface mount LED? P.S. The image included will be stenciled and mirrored on each side of the apple on the top of the iBook.

Posted by Ora 11 years ago  |  last reply 11 years ago

What does this circuit do?

I pulled this out of a battery powered fluorescent light.  It runs on 12 volts and has a decent transformer in it. What is the purpose of this circuit? Also, how could I turn this into a capacitor charger?

Posted by JamesRPatrick 8 years ago  |  last reply 8 years ago

dose any body know if there is a way of connecting fluorescent strip light in series i have a few

Transformers about and tomb stone end bits for the lightsand a lot of tubes ... just want to know if any1 has tried this b4?

Asked by andybuda 8 years ago  |  last reply 8 years ago

ccfl inverter, samsung sic320?

Hello, my laptop recently died, i killed it, anyway, i have salved some stuff, one of which is the cold cathode and inverter assembly, except, i cant get it to light up, i tried everything, i hope i didnt kill it.  It is a samsung sic320 inverter board, if you hold it where the wires are facing up, from left to right in wire color is, orange, red, brown, and black, i dont have a camera, i killed it to expirementing, but just wanted to know which wires lit the cathode and at what voltage.

Asked by cburgess7x 5 years ago  |  last reply 5 years ago

CFL Recycling at Home Depot

CFLs (compact fluorescent light bulbs) are becoming increasingly popular: right from the article linked to below, "compact fluorescents use up to 75 percent less energy, last longer and cost less over time than incandescent bulbs." Plus, they come in a fun, curly-q shape.However, they contain trace amounts of mercury, which makes recycling of them difficult--until now. Home Depot (which, to my surprise, is the second-largest retail company in the United States behind Wal-Mart) is offering comprehensive recycling for CFLs: any brand, at any of the nearly 2,000 Home Depot locations. Read the article from the New York Times here

Posted by joshf 10 years ago  |  last reply 10 years ago