Author Topic: Why are cobraheads the most collected outdoor luminaire?  (Read 470 times)
LightsoftheWest
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Why are cobraheads the most collected outdoor luminaire? « on: April 23, 2022, 03:29:52 PM » Author: LightsoftheWest
I've always wondered why so many people collect cobraheads more often than all other types of outdoor luminaires, like post-tops, flood lights, wall-packs, shoeboxes, etc. NEMA heads and gumballs are sought after, but not as often as cobraheads. I personally don't find them very interesting because they've been documented so many times; I do still find vintage cobraheads interesting, though. Any thoughts?
« Last Edit: April 23, 2022, 03:33:43 PM by LightsoftheWest » Logged

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Re: Why are cobraheads the most collected outdoor luminaire? « Reply #1 on: April 23, 2022, 05:49:29 PM » Author: AgentHalogen_87
Maybe because they are the most common type of street light, at least in America. So if someone wants a fixture in their collection, they are the most available luminaires. :wndr:
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Re: Why are cobraheads the most collected outdoor luminaire? « Reply #2 on: April 23, 2022, 06:15:40 PM » Author: Econolite03
Ian, you’re not alone. I think non-cobra stuff is cool too.
 8)

The reason I think most members don’t really collect shoeboxes is because at a glance they’re pretty copy-and-paste appearance wise, same kinda goes with post tops. Now some do stand out as well. I’m considering getting a 150W HPS GE Wallighter, and maybe a Powerflood like a 150W HPS PF-154 in the future potentially.
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Re: Why are cobraheads the most collected outdoor luminaire? « Reply #3 on: April 23, 2022, 07:30:55 PM » Author: joseph_125
I guess it comes down to space and cobraheads seem to be more attractive for those with limited space. I think with the other fixtures, most at a glance look the same as the other models to where as cobraheads can vary quite a bit. I suppose they also have the allure of being something you can't normally buy compared to floodlights. Before sites like eBay, the only way to get a cobrahead is to probably find a distributor willing to order one for you or to prowl antique stores and salvage shops until you find one. 

I do have a few wallpacks, floodlights, and even a shoebox but yeah I think a one or two of those is enough for me right. In terms of post tops, I find the incandescent ones to be a a tad boring and the HID roadway ones to be fairly large and unwieldy to store. I suppose if something like one of those Holophane post tops show up I might get one.
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Re: Why are cobraheads the most collected outdoor luminaire? « Reply #4 on: April 23, 2022, 08:42:59 PM » Author: 108CAM
In Australia, cobraheads of any kind are extremely hard to find as they weren't widely used. I've only seen about 3 in the wild plus a few more in collections. I'd love to get a cobrahead someday, even if it's all beat up
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Re: Why are cobraheads the most collected outdoor luminaire? « Reply #5 on: April 23, 2022, 09:32:00 PM » Author: fluorescent lover 40
Cobraheads are what I grew up with. Seeing all the different types was cool, and I wanted all those different types lol. And that's why I want to collect them more. They are pretty easy to get too in a lot of cases.

A lot of the post tops I've seen are nothing really special. Mainly the acorn lights. I would collect the older stuff but there's really nothing here, or whatever's available is crazy expensive. There are a lot of cool designs though.

Flood lights... trust me, there's a lot that I really like. So many different designs. I have a bunch of residential HID flood lights, but that's not what you're looking for. The only "real" HID flood I have is a GE PF-154, saved from an LED changeout. I saved that because it looked different from all the others on that place (old-looking Hubbells and Caster stuff). Hindsight tells me I should've save one of those Hubbells, as they're the ones that look older than they do, despite being HPS.

Wallpacks... there's a lot of cool designs but are a little harder to find than flood lights and cobraheads. All the ones I have are the boring design.

To me, a lot of shoeboxes look the same and are typically boring to me, but I do have some that I like, which is basically every shoebox that has something different from what I usually see. The main thing is a refractor of some sort, especially a cobrahead one, or a unique shape or size. I've had no luck with that though. I actually had a chance to get some 400w HPS shoeboxes a while back from an LED changeout. I think they were Lithonia. But because they looked like most out there, at the time, I didn't save them, just the guts of two of them. Hindsight tells me I should've saved at least one of them though.

At least for me, it all comes down to space and money, as well as what I felt like getting at the time.
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Re: Why are cobraheads the most collected outdoor luminaire? « Reply #6 on: April 23, 2022, 10:47:44 PM » Author: joseph_125
Space is big issue for me. If I had a massive place to stick all my lights in, I would no doubt look into getting larger lights like a Wide-Lite F series, one of the larger drop lens shoeboxes, and some 1000w cobraheads. But with limited space I feel I have most of the HID fixture types represented. Aside from post tops and decorative roadway HID luminaires. I do have a example of most luminaire types.

Years ago I actually did have a opportunity to buy a Powerlite Twistpak post top (with the 30" canopy) at the Restore and one of those Cooper "Coachbox" roadway lights but I passed on both because of their size. I did however pick up the Cooper UCD shoebox since it was rather small and was pretty quirky with the drop refractor.

To be honest, I'm not sure what type of fixture I feel like getting for my next light. 
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Re: Why are cobraheads the most collected outdoor luminaire? « Reply #7 on: May 09, 2022, 12:43:54 AM » Author: HM1000
I'll have a warehouse of them on display and some not on display. A few NOS lights, Some used, Some restored aaaaannnndddd a high mast pole/fixtures.
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Re: Why are cobraheads the most collected outdoor luminaire? « Reply #8 on: June 17, 2022, 01:52:57 AM » Author: LightsoftheWest
Late reply, but thank you all for your replies.

Another thing is HID high/low-bay luminaires. A ton of people here find those nostalgic. I guess I could see the larger 20-22" versions taking up a bit of space.
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Re: Why are cobraheads the most collected outdoor luminaire? « Reply #9 on: June 17, 2022, 02:34:43 AM » Author: joseph_125
Yeah, I have a 24" 250w PSMH Lithonia low bay I ended up giving away to a buddy of mine, was way too big and annoying to store, even dissembled.

I think something like a Cooper Steeler would be easier to store. Maybe I'll pick one of those up if I see a 400w MH one for cheap.

I find the low wattage HID recessed lights pretty nostalgic too, especially the 100w MV ones. I have a couple of 50w PSMH and one 100w MV can but due to the more or less permanent installation both are in storage until I figure out a long term plan for them.
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Re: Why are cobraheads the most collected outdoor luminaire? « Reply #10 on: June 17, 2022, 09:15:25 AM » Author: HM1000
Late reply, but thank you all for your replies.

Another thing is HID high/low-bay luminaires. A ton of people here find those nostalgic. I guess I could see the larger 20-22" versions taking up a bit of space.
I have a Day Brite EHO fixture. It's reflector is about 15"
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