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CFL (compact fluorescent light)? Answered

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.


what do you need this shape of glass for? You might be able to get what you need from another source. I needed a glass helix for a project and got one by breaking open a condensor I bought from ebay. Like used in chemistry to condense vapours (usually in the lab and glassware section), they're often used for whisky stills (illegal to do without a license in the UK). £15 - £50 ish

Hiya Lasersage, thanks for your response

What I intended to do was fill it up with 'glow on the dark' resin.  There's actually a product on the market that you can buy, but it uses normal bulbs and is incased in a clear resin cube (see: http://www.play.com/Gadgets/Gadgets/4-/171081/Glow-Brick-Light-Bulb/Product.html)

I wanted to do it with the CFL because I find the helix tubes to be a nice and unusual shape in contrast to just the normal, standard bulbs.  I have actually looked into helix tubes but the ones I have previously seen are either stupidly expensive or were unpratical so I gave up looking, but been meaning to have another look.

Certainly I wanted to have the 'base' of a CFL so it looked like a light (not just a glass tube) to play on the theme of being a light bulb /glowing. :3

Thanks for your reply nonetheless.

Infact the energy saving lamp is very popular all over the world, not only it is energy saving but also very bright for the A grade evergy saving, which is made from rare earth triphospher powder in China. For the high quality CFL, the color is 80%-82% close to the sunshine with little UV. And saving energy 80%. I am Philip, staying in Chinese factory, and know that very much. And our products get CE certificates, meet the IEC 60968 60969 requirements. Any friends want some samples or do as our agent, you can contact with me +86 13726065027 or send email to philip_lamp@hotmail.com

There are only 4milligrams of mercury in a single CFL tube, so any hazard would be reduced to almost zero by ventilation and gloves.

A quick browse of the web reveals nobody who seems to be bothered by the phosphors in CFLs, and one site even commented on how useful it was that the traces of mercury bind to the phosphor powders so that it is easier to see them.

I would think, then, that some damp (that is, just wet enough to be sticky to powders) method of scouring the inside of the tube should produce a powder that can be easily, safely and legally disposed of in the household trash without generating much in the way of hazardous dust.

Here in the UK, try Osram.

Either way, I'd like to get my hands of a few clean tubes rather than cause myself harm ;)

the real problem is not the mercury(its only a few drops) but the white coating, which is poisonous phosphorus

ohh.... ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh my knowledge is shrinking!!! noooooooooooo