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GE 85 Watt H3 Mercury Lamp

GE 85 Watt H3 Mercury Lamp

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This was a recent eBay score for me. Although this lamp was made later on, it is identical to the third US mercury lamp produced, the H3, which was the first quartz mercury lamp produced in the US. Since sealing to quartz was difficult and the seals were primitive at the time, being that they were made of a stack of different glasses to match the coefficient of thermal expansion, there is no starting electrode. The lamp is started by a wire wrapped around the arc tube. This necessitates a high starting voltage, so the H3 has an arc voltage in the ~250v range, and needs 400v+ to start. This probably prevented the lamp from gaining any popularity, in addition to the fact that the lower voltage 100w H4 lamp was introduced shortly later, which had an auxiliary starting electrode.

830454C9-41A4-41F9-950A-CEB232EADF71.jpeg C80C14FB-6339-449C-B8FC-29AC664ECA91.jpeg C02C7F9D-2EE0-449B-BE17-54A2B5952095.jpeg 49AAD87C-F245-4124-935D-4A091DF8BEC1.jpeg

Light Information

Light Information

Manufacturer:General Electric
Model Reference:H85A3
Lamp
Lamp Type:Mercury Vapor
Filament/Radiator Type:High Pressure Mercury Discharge
Base:E26
Shape/Finish:T10
Electrical
Wattage:85w
Voltage:250v
Current:0.38a
Physical/Production
Fabrication Date:Either June 1953, 1961, 1969, or 1977. Probably ‘53 or ‘61

File information

File information

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Filename:C80C14FB-6339-449C-B8FC-29AC664ECA91.jpeg
Album name:Mr. Orthosilicate / Mercury Vapor Lamps
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Keywords:Lamps
File Size:718 KB
Date added:Apr 05, 2020
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Date Time:2020:04:04 17:11:49
DateTime Original:2020:04:04 17:11:49
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SilverRay
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UCSugBKOjSXGHbmMgYI-aUyw
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Apr 05, 2020 at 04:55 PM Author: SilverRay
Fantastical lamp!
wide-lite 1000
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Apr 05, 2020 at 05:05 PM Author: wide-lite 1000
According to my 1980 GE catalog , these were designed for "special application use" I.E. some form of lab equipment .

I have never seen one other than the listing in the catalog !!! VERY COOL !

Collector,Hoarder,Pack-rat! Clear mercury Rules!!

Fluorescent05
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Zack


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Apr 05, 2020 at 07:34 PM Author: Fluorescent05
Awesome! Do you have a ballast?

Don't be fooLED, T8 IS the worst thing to do to a magnetic T12 fixture.

WestinghouseCeramalux
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Vintage HID Collector


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Apr 05, 2020 at 07:39 PM Author: WestinghouseCeramalux
I saw these on eBay and ordered one, only to have the seller refund me because an associate dropped the lamp. (I have three of the 100W versions. )

A man has two lives to live, and the second one begins when he realizes he only has one.

Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and to remove all doubt.

fluorescent lover 40
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Westinghouse OV-25s at sunset.


UCi55A3hASj7xOZ1eTRO1Jvg
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Apr 05, 2020 at 09:14 PM Author: fluorescent lover 40

I saw these on eBay and ordered one, only to have the seller refund me because an associate dropped the lamp. (I have three of the 100W versions. )


Dropped. The. (...) Lamp?!?

Well, we all make mistakes, but I'd be mad at myself if I broke another (yes another) vintage lamp!

Good quality things are awesome. Cheaply made things are not.

Fluorescent05
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Zack


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Apr 05, 2020 at 10:45 PM Author: Fluorescent05

Dropped. The. (...) Lamp?!?

Well, we all make mistakes, but I'd be mad at myself if I broke another (yes another) vintage lamp!

How many did you break?

Don't be fooLED, T8 IS the worst thing to do to a magnetic T12 fixture.

Toiyabeshawn
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Apr 05, 2020 at 11:21 PM Author: Toiyabeshawn
Breaking lamps really sucks. I think we all have done it😡 I had a complete case of old clear top sylvania 250/dx lamps that I didn’t realize the tape on the bottom of the box had rotted so bad, when I picked up the box, the bottom opened and they all slipped out, 3 broke! It made me go nuclear!! They were of 1968 vintage, plain white wrappers with red inserts. I’m guessing 1968 as the silver bases had the old “68,69,70,71,etc date recording marks..
Silverliner
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Rare white reflector


GoL
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Apr 06, 2020 at 11:48 AM Author: Silverliner
I got one too! Awesome little lamp. It’s a Lab Arc lamp. GE also made an UV transmitting version but I believe ours are not.

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Member of L-G since 2005.

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Also a fan of cars, travelling, working out, food, hanging out.

Power company: Southern California Edison.

Silverliner
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Rare white reflector


GoL
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Apr 06, 2020 at 11:49 AM Author: Silverliner
Man, that sucks!!!


I saw these on eBay and ordered one, only to have the seller refund me because an associate dropped the lamp. (I have three of the 100W versions. )

Administrator of Lighting-Gallery.net. Need help? PM me.

Member of L-G since 2005.

Collector of vintage bulbs, street lights and fluorescent fixtures.

Electrician.

Also a fan of cars, travelling, working out, food, hanging out.

Power company: Southern California Edison.

HPS_250
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Westinghouse Lifeguard H38JA-100-DX BT-25!


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Apr 06, 2020 at 01:27 PM Author: HPS_250
Cool lamp!

@WestinghouseCeramlux

That sucks! Ebay sellers need to be more careful with these vintage lamps.

I like all kinds of lighting and electrical, especially HIDs and street lights!
-  neon sign collector
- vintage and rare lamp collector
Power company: SCE (Southern California Edison) 120V, 60HZ
Westinghouse Lifeguard will always be my favorite lamp
Gotta love vintage HIDs!
Stop LEDISEASE!

High Intensity
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EYE 175w MV


GoL
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Apr 06, 2020 at 01:36 PM Author: High Intensity

I got one too! Awesome little lamp. It’s a Lab Arc lamp. GE also made an UV transmitting version but I believe ours are not.

I have the UV version in my collection.

Old lighting is, and will always be, the best lighting.

James
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Apr 08, 2020 at 02:40 AM Author: James
This is a really historically important lamp, its design with external starting antenna and high voltage principle is almost the same as the very first high pressure mercury-quartz lamp made by Philips. It is surprising that even though it may not be so old, GE did not change the method of manufacturing to fall in line with other newer mercury lamps - it still uses the original style of glass-to-metal arc tube seals to solid tungsten rods instead of the later molybdenum foil press-seals. If it wasn't for the date code you could believe this was made in the 1930s!
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