Category: Latest News

Outdoor LED Display – See it in Action!

UPDATED!! New fixtures added!

One of the fastest growing LED markets is in the Outdoor area.  We’ve discussed in earlier posts how the indoor LED products are starting to come around, but for the most part, numbers don’t add up.  Well in outdoor situations the numbers are a no-brainer!  The hardest part about understanding LED is actually seeing it live and in person.  We can tell you how a 20w LED fixture will replace a 100 watt High pressure Sodium fixture, but wouldn’t it be nice to actually see it person???  We thought so.  So we built a board of LED fixtures to do just that.

Listed from Top Left being #1, to bottom right being #12.  Here’s what we have:

1) RAB Lighting’s – 91 Watt Area Light.  This fixture is perfect for parking lot lighting and walkway lighting throughout a facility’s property.

2)  RAB Lighting’s – 13 Watt Flood/Spot Light.  This fixture is perfect for lighting up a flag pole or any outdoor sign.

3) Lithonia Lighting’s – 35 Watt Wall Pack.  This general purpose wall pack has an excellent beam pattern and is able to replace up to 175w Metal Halide Wall Pack fixtures.

4) Juno Lighting’s – 50 Watt Decorative Wall Pack – Polaris wall pack designed for higher end architectural look.  Ultra efficient LED Fixture with a nice look to match.
5) RAB Lighting’s – 52 Watt Wall Pack – Designed to replace up to a 250w HPS / Metal Halide Wall Pack
6) RAB Lighting’s –  78 Watt Flood Light – Designed to Replace 250w to 320w Metal Halide Flood Lights.  Perfect for lighting up the side of building.
7) Lithonia Lighting’s – OLW14 – 26w LED Wall Pack – Ideal above man doors on your building!
8) Lithonia Lighting’s – OLAW – 35w LED Wall/Area Light.  Perfect Dusk to Dawn Fixture Replacement
9) Lithonia Lightins’s – OLW – 35w LED Wall Pack – For larger HID Replacement applications
10) RAB Lighting’s – 13w Wall Pack – Designed to replace 50w-70w HID Wall pack, above man doors.
11) RAB Lighting’s – 20w Wall Pack – Designed to replace 70w-100w HID Wall Pack
12) RAB Lighting’s – 26w Wall Pack – Designed to replace 150w HID Wall Pack

Adventure Lighting LED Display Board - Lights On!

One of great features of our display is the nLight Touchpad Control.  Thanks to our friends from SensorSwitch, we are able to individually control each light on the board to easily compare like fixtures.  The wiring is all done over Cat5 cable, making it easy and cheap to install.  This switch will individually control 16 different channels.  And it looks cool to boot!

nLight Touch Control Pad - Programmed Channels - Adventure Lighting LED Display Board
Here’s what the inner workings look like from the back. 
Adventure Lighting - LED Display - Back of Display

We’re excited to show our display to anyone who would like to see the latest and greatest in LED Fixtures on display.  Stop by if you’re in town.

Adventure Lighting - LED Display - Full Shot

Questions? Comments?

Brian Huff
Adventure Lighting

Head To The (New) Exit Signs?


A friend sent me an article on emergecy exit signs from an online magazine that I don’t read, called Slate.

After reading it, I will almost certainly continue not to read it, but do want to address something the article points out. There is apparently a movement afoot to do away with our current emergency exit signs.


“Do away with” is not entirely correct. More accurately,  some people want to replace the standard “EXIT” sign that you and I have grown up with, with a picture – specifically, a human form who appears to be running towards an open door.


This is not a new movement. They’ve been working on this for over 25 years. What’s new is that they’re getting some traction, particularly with a group that never seems happy with how things are – yep, you guessed it, Congress.

The reason for wanting the change?

Our current emergency “exit” sign can not be understood by people who can’t read English. Also, the color is red, which pretty much means “danger” in any language, and could actually scare people away from it, who didn’t know any better – or so says this group of sign-changing lobbyists.

That’s why a new style of exit sign was invented in the late 70’s, by designer Yokio Ota. It shows a human figure running towards what appears to be an open door. Ota’s design was adopted by the International Standardization Organization and is now the template for many countries around the world.

So be it. If they like it, use it.

Here in the U.S. the standards for exit signs were set in the 30’s by The National Fire Protection Association. And while the color red has become the standard, it’s not required by the NFPA – just enough contrast between the writing and the background, so people can read it.

Maybe I sound like an old fogey – do something, doesn’t mean it’s right for us, here in the good ole’ U.S.

The argument that someone who doesn’t speak our language, wouldn’t understand what an “EXIT” sign means, seems ridiculous. Since people the world over are used to seeing a sign associated with a doorway that leads them out of the building they’re in, wouldn’t it be reasonable to think that a foreigner who sees a lot of big, red, illuminated signs above a lot of doors, would figure out in short order that that’s probably a ぬける sign? (“to exit” in Japanese)

I mean, is it really that much more clear when you look at Mr. Ota’s running man sign? Besides, having to constantly look at a person running for the exits while I’m trying to enjoy a movie, is scarier to me than thirty-foot high red flashing EXIT letters.

And regardless of whether it’s a red word or a green guy, wouldn’t someone with that person, teach them what it means, or wouldn’t they learn on their own? If I saw ぬけるin red, repeatedly over doors in Japan, I think I’d get the hint – hey, that must be an emergency exit!

 I’m all for change, if it’s change for the better, or change for a reasonable purpose.

But we’re talking about retrofitting literally tens of thousands of signs in this country, just for people who are not living here but are simply visiting – because I’m guessing that the people who do move here from overseas, have to learn some ability to speak English. Does that seem reasonable?  I couldn’t imagine moving to China without eventually learning some Chinese – wouldn’t I have to, if I was going to be able to survive being there?

But hey, if the green running man sign becomes the standard exit sign in this country (and I doubt it will, no more than the metric system has become our measurement standard) we’ll sell it at Adventure Lighting – just like we sell the “old fashioned” exit signs.



Jack Huff, along with his son Brian and wife Sue, owns and manages Adventure Lighting in Des Moines, Iowa. For more information, go to

Almost Time To Stop Using Those T12 Ballasts


If you’re still using those old, creaky, outdated 4-foot T12’s and the magnetic ballasts that go with them, here’s a reminder – you won’t be able to buy those ballasts new, starting July 1st. 

That’s because the Department of Energy will ban the manufacture of the ballasts starting on that date – no more replacement ballasts for the T12’s. And that’s probably going to tick some people off, who either didn’t know the ban was coming, or forgot about it. 

You’ll still be able to buy the electronic ballasts, of course. But the magnetic ballasts are going the way of The Vega and New Coke. And so are T12’s, which will no longer be made after 2012.

This whole thing started back in 2005, when ballast manufacturers had to stop selling magnetic ballasts for new fixtures with full wattage T12 lamps. A year later, light fixture manufacturers had to stop using the ballasts in their T12’s. 

It’s not like people aren’t still buying the T12’s – we sell our share. I also read something the other day that said 30% of all 4-foot fluorescent light sales in the U.S., are T12’s. That means a lot of people are going to wake up July 1st needing to retrofit their T12 lighting sockets, otherwise they’re going to be scrambling to find replacement ballasts from anyone who happens to have any left in stock. 


But let’s face it, the technology is outdated, and there are far better alternatives to the T12 – the T8 and T5 are much more efficient, provide better light and last longer. Plus there are a load of incentive programs to motivate companies to upgrade to more advanced lighting technology, whether they’re still using the T12’s or even more outdated incandescents. 

There are some T12’s that will manage to avoid the Government’s axe. Here’s the list, from The National Lighting Bureau: 

T12 dimming ballasts that dim to 50% or less, two-lamp F96T12HO ballasts designed for outdoor sign applications where temperatures may fall to as low as -20F, and magnetic ballasts with power factors less than 0.90 designed and labeled for residential building applications. 


If that’s you, then you’re safe. If not – or if you’re not sure and don’t want to get caught with your T12’s down – call us at Adventure Lighting and let us help. We’re at 515-288-0444. 

As for me, I can’t wait to see those T12’s gone – don’t let the door hit you in the ballast. 🙂  



Jack Huff, along with his son Brian and wife Sue, owns and manages Adventure Lighting in Des Moines, Iowa. For more information, go to

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