Author Topic: Why plastic reflector?  (Read 526 times)
osramlight_200
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Why plastic reflector? « on: June 08, 2021, 08:16:37 PM » Author: osramlight_200
Why were plastic reflectors produced in the old period? What do you think?
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fluorescent lover 40
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Re: Why plastic reflector? « Reply #1 on: June 08, 2021, 09:08:47 PM » Author: fluorescent lover 40
Probably for cost-saving measures. Even in some modern lights they still use plastic reflectors.
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Re: Why plastic reflector? « Reply #2 on: June 09, 2021, 01:25:03 AM » Author: dor123
He meaning to the reflector, which is usually aluminum made. Plastic is much lighter and cheaper than aluminum.
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Re: Why plastic reflector? « Reply #3 on: June 09, 2021, 03:29:00 PM » Author: Medved
They are not cheaper, but just perform better (do not degrade that fast with oxidation, less restrictions on the exact shape so allow better efficiency designs; assume decent quality made, of course).
Aluminum do not allow sharp edges or ridges (so do not allow segmented mirror designs,...; so need the refractor to be shaped that complex way instead which poses extra light losses).
Yes, the plastic is a bit more fragile, but usually still not the limitting part...
« Last Edit: June 10, 2021, 02:00:33 PM by Medved » Logged

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osramlight_200
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Re: Why plastic reflector? « Reply #4 on: June 09, 2021, 04:38:10 PM » Author: osramlight_200
Plastic Reflector is produced for cheapness and economy. I have one street lamp with plastic reflector. In addition, I can say that the production of plastic reflectors is very unsuccessful. Because as you use it, black begins to form and it causes big complaints. Plastic reflector as I pictured it. It came out broken in that corner and I forced it to stick with glue.

Used condition:
https://www.lighting-gallery.net/gallery/displayimage.php?album=search&cat=0&pos=30&pid=185922
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osramlight_200
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Re: Why plastic reflector? « Reply #5 on: June 09, 2021, 04:42:12 PM » Author: osramlight_200
He meaning to the reflector, which is usually aluminum made. Plastic is much lighter and cheaper than aluminum.

Actually, mine has a plastic reflector and it turned out to be heavier than the aluminum reflector.
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Medved
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Re: Why plastic reflector? « Reply #6 on: June 10, 2021, 02:13:01 PM » Author: Medved
Plastic Reflector is produced for cheapness and economy. I have one street lamp with plastic reflector. In addition, I can say that the production of plastic reflectors is very unsuccessful. Because as you use it, black begins to form and it causes big complaints. Plastic reflector as I pictured it. It came out broken in that corner and I forced it to stick with glue.

Used condition:
https://www.lighting-gallery.net/gallery/displayimage.php?album=search&cat=0&pos=30&pid=185922

I've never seen blackened plastic reflectors, except only one, clearly very inferior way processed (likely the passivation coating was missing at all, so the aluminum reflective layer oxidized) product.
On the other hand "milky"/yellowed plastic lenses are a common sight (not present with just a clear glass in front of optics made all around faceted reflector), the aluminum surface turned "milky white" as well (so instead of redirecting the light where needed, it was just diffusing it), not even speaking about rusted steel reflectors.

Yes, plastic reflectors are rather fragile, they do tend to break if the fixture get some nasty shock (such it breaks the lamp as well, but I understand the broken lamp isn't that big of a problem as the broken reflector is). With quality lanterns/fixtures, the reflector is mounted on some flexible supports (the socket then should be fixed to the reflector, to maintain the alignment), which then should be able to absorb the sharp shocks. Mounting that reflector directly into the metal frame is not that good idea.
So overall fixture construction, when going cheap, the aluminum reflector is a solution. When going high quality, the properly designed, made and installed plastic is the way to go, even when the cost will be somewhat higher.
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Re: Why plastic reflector? « Reply #7 on: June 10, 2021, 03:28:58 PM » Author: magslight
@Medved: Plastic reflectors are used in many lanterns but often they got replaced by aluminium ones (or get deleted without replacement :-S ) . Plastic reflectors tends to get transparent or get even completely black. In tiny post top lanterns they often break too. By discharge lamps they last longer by wattages up to 100W. Over 100W the aluminium powdered part burns away and many manufacturers reacted and used metall reflectors for E40 lamps again. The exception proves the rule anyway.
I noticed LED lanterns got again plastic reflectors but I have none experience to tell something about their stability or what heat there can be. There won't find a LED lantern its way in my collection anyway... ::)
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Re: Why plastic reflector? « Reply #8 on: June 12, 2021, 12:03:46 PM » Author: Krep
By discharge lamps they last longer by wattages up to 100W. Over 100W the aluminium powdered part burns away and many manufacturers reacted and used metall reflectors for E40 lamps again
Right as you can see here https://www.lighting-gallery.net/gallery/displayimage.php?pos=-199459 70w lamp does not burn away the plastic reflector, luminaires around 15 years old, but 150w ones started to blackened at 6 years.
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