Author Topic: LED Landing lights Whats the latest?  (Read 3786 times)

Stuart Robb

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LED Landing lights Whats the latest?
« on: May 25, 2012, 10:07:51 PM »
Whats the latest on the performance installation and costing on LED landing lights V HIDs

Ron Hensley

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Re: LED Landing lights Whats the latest?
« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2012, 10:34:52 AM »
Stuart,

Personally, I weighed all of the pro's and con's of LED's vs HID's and went with the LED for my N35.  Major influencing factors:
(1) Cost - I can buy ~3 LED lights if needed for the price of 1 HID
(2) Installation cost and complexity - None, I can and did install it my self.  Owner performed maintenance logbook entry.  HID's require an A&P, STC, 4 - 8 hours of installation, wiring, mounting of ballast.
(3) Dropped ~16 amps of current draw over original GE 4313 bulb. HID's have fairly low current draw as well.
(4) It can be pulsed easily.  HID's for the most part either can't be or are recommended to not be pulsed.
(5) Longevity - Both make very long life claims.  However, the ballast seems to be a recurring weak link for the HID.

Hope this helps a little.  It's all in making an informed decision about which will best meet your own personal requirements vs all the marketing and lemming influence.

Regards,
Ron

Stuart Robb

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Re: LED Landing lights Whats the latest?
« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2012, 06:11:29 PM »
Thanks Ron,
                my main enquirey is the "real world" lighting output. I've seen claims and figures that state output in lumins but the real question for me is how bright are they 400 to 500 metres from the threshold at night. LEDs look whiter but don't seem(at this stage) to be a radfical improvement over a standard incadescent lamp. The Baron has 2 x 100 amp alternators so I'm not short on power and temp isnt an issue as you would rarely fly in Australia with lights on all the time (lots of sinshine and very few airplanes!) The candle power output of HID's impresses me as I equate it to horsepower. Any other thoughts or info out there?
Stuart Robb

Paul Safran

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Re: LED Landing lights Whats the latest?
« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2012, 07:05:32 PM »
Stuart,

Ron makes good points, but install is not hard, current drop is similar, and they can be pulsed.
I installed the HID in the cowl of my N35 with the "taxi" lense.
Very happy, even diffused it's brighter than the original halogen landing at night.
There is no comparison of current LEDs to an HID, doesn't even come close in output, forget the color, it's a "red herring"

LED is a quick solution to the vibration failure of the filament bulbs in engine cowls.
HID will burn your eyes out, which is great for recognition too.

See....
http://csobeech.com/hid-nose.html

Stuart Spindel

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Re: LED Landing lights Whats the latest?
« Reply #4 on: June 06, 2012, 01:44:03 PM »
Agree with Paul.
I have HID on my Baron. They are pulsed. The only caution is that the lights be ON for about 40-seconds, to achieve full brightness, before starting the pulse.
Operationally, I turn lights ON and pulse when starting to move. Because the ON overrides the pulse, the lights are not pulsing. When on the runway, I merely turn the light switches OFF and the pulsing begins.

I have the Knots-2U system. Very pleased to say that in the past two years I have not had even one mid-air collision! <g>

John Johnson

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Re: LED Landing lights Whats the latest?
« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2012, 04:21:37 PM »
Regarding the relative output of LED lights and the incandescent bulbs, I put one of each type in each side of my K-model to test that, and went out flying on a dark night and shot some landings, trying first one light, then the other, and sometimes both to observe the relative differences.  My observation was that the LED lamp was not quite as bright as the incandescent bulb, though almost as bright, and definitely worth shedding the 35 amp draw.  The ones that I tested seemed to have a more concentrated beam, as well, though still enough diffused to the sides to illuminate laterally, though that probably varies by brand and model of light.

Hugh Hazeltine

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Re: LED Landing lights Whats the latest?
« Reply #6 on: June 15, 2012, 06:06:21 PM »
I have an "S" model and replaced both lights with LEDs from aircraft spruce.   The reduction in current draw is amazing.  It maybe slightly less lumens, but on the other hand I never hesitate to use them now.  No voltage drop is worth it.

Steven Weintraub

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Re: LED Landing lights Whats the latest?
« Reply #7 on: June 15, 2012, 06:29:05 PM »
I'm interested in reducing the voltage drop over an incandescent. Brightness is not a big issue for me.
How much does an LED bulb cost and what is the part number?

Paul Safran

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Re: LED Landing lights Whats the latest?
« Reply #8 on: June 15, 2012, 07:12:46 PM »
Steve,

There are a few options for both the PAR36 & 46 sizes.

TCM & Whelan have PMA'd & STC'd bulbs thru Spruce.

There are also ones available to the experimental market and the law enforcement and railroad markets that are significantly less, but the same bulbs without FAA documentation.

Up to you and your A&P-IA as to what's valid.

I have an HID in the nosebowl, but considering the Grote PAR46 monster for my nose gear.

David Fleckenstein

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Re: LED Landing lights Whats the latest?
« Reply #9 on: June 16, 2012, 07:27:01 AM »
I have the Knots 2 U HID light in the nose and the Whellen LED on the nose gear and have found that the HID puts out about double the light of the LED.  The HID light will put out some 540,000 candle power while the LED is around 250,000. 

Hope this helps,

Dave

Scott Newpower

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Re: LED Landing lights Whats the latest?
« Reply #10 on: June 17, 2012, 12:32:39 PM »
I installed the Whelen LED in my S35 in the position under the prop myself.  I then had my shop install a flasher, I leave the LED switch on at all times.