Anyone off to VCF-UK

Tony Duell ard at
Wed Jun 2 13:46:03 CDT 2010

> Tony Duell [ard at] wrote:
> > It's not the dummy load, it's the 'series lightbulb trick'.
> OK. A "rough service" bulb is what you want. That's a filament

This is why I want to see the exact terms of the ban in the UK and rest 
of the EU. If rough service bulbs are exempt, then there is no problem at 

> light bulb to you and me but you can drop it a few more times
> before it becomes a candidate for immediate landfill.
> A quick check online suggests that instead of ~40p you'll end
> up paying ~=A32 but if you only use it for servicing gear (and
> you're not too clumsy) then I presume the slight increase in
> cost probably isn't a big deal.

It's no problem at all. The bulb is going to last a long time used as a 
series limiter, and aanyway it problaby saves its cost many times over 
every time I use it.

> > I'd heard 'domestic _lightiing_ applications'. There is a significant
> > differnece, at least for what I do :-)
> What they sell them for and what you do with them are different things.
> AFAIK the legislation doesn't stop you buying a carpet and using it as
> wallpaper (or buying a rough service bulb intended to light up the local
> mechanic's workshop and then sticking it in a lampholder at home).

Right... So just what is the point of this ban? :-)

> > Hopefully muy local electrical wholesaller will keep them (it's the
> > sort of place that doens't ask questions, they just sell you what you
> > ask for).
> I don't think it even matters if you walk in and say "I want a rough
> service
> bulb and I'm going to take it home, stick it in a domestic lampholder
> and
> read a schematic by it all night long". It's not even theoretically

Maybe, maybe not. I think it's simpler to just go and ask for the rough 
service bulb. After that, what I do with it is my business and nobody 
need know :-)

> illegal
> for them to sell it to you under those circumstances or for you to
> purchase
> it and use it under those circumstances. As long as the box holds no
> more
> than two bulbs and the box says "not for domestic use" (or some similar

And what on earth is the point of 'no more than 2 bulbs per box', other 
than to ensure the use of excessive packaging which will need to be 
recylced. I thought they were trying to cut down waste, not increase it...

Is it similar to that ridiculous law that you can only buy Aspirin 
tablets in boxes of 16 (or 32 from a registers pharmacy)? The idea behind 
that was you couldn't buy enough to fatally overdose on. But if I was 
daft enough to want to commit suicide that way (and I will assure you I 
am not), I would have the sense to visit several shops to get enough pills...

> restrictions) they can sell them and you can buy them all day long.
> How long they'll be commercially available depends (I presume) on how
> long
> commercial premises keep needing them (which I presume depends on how

Well, considiering I saw new _carbon filament_ bulbs advertised on a web 
site quite recently, I suspect that rough serve bulbs will be around for 
quite some time..

> long
> it takes for a viable LED based lamp to appear at a sensible price).
> At that point you'll need to design a suitable replacement; but I
> wouldn't=20
> worry just yet. (Hey, leaded solder is still easily available).

True, and I guess for much the same reasons. There are applications where 
there is no alternative to lead/tin solder.


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