oldSTAGER No.111
August/September 2008

 

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It'll be all white on the night

I must get out more; on night events I mean. When I was given a new Don Barrow Light (DBL) to review, I believed it would only be weeks before I could put it to the test. Months later and having only competed in daylight I contrived a sad exercise which would be a suitable substitute. So, one evening when the sun had gone down I carted my table-top rallying paraphernalia to my Escort and set up an office in the navigator seat. Objective: construct one route card using a conventional tungsten bulb and another illuminated with a white LED bulb.

I soon acquired a headache using the tungsten bulb. Obviously not helped by my cramped conditions, but I am also a natural or white light person. When I refurbished my work room I purposely installed multiple white fluorescent tubes because of the amount of time I spend PC-bound or map-bound. It may be just me, but I find the yellowish tinge of a tungsten light difficult to work under, particularly when itís important to distinguish between a white and yellow road on a table-top rally.

When I swapped to the LED Ė Wow! I thought somehow I had been teleported back to my study. Under the magnificent crystal glass lens my map shone under a crisp, clear Ė and bright white Ė light. Half an hour later my task was complete with white and yellow roads clearly identified.

I canít comment on the long-term economy of LED bulbs, but for my eyesight the additional cost (£7.50 compared to the £2.20 tungsten) is a positive investment.

I will be upgrading my very old DBL to use LED bulbs, sacrificing the fact that the rheostat will just become an on-off switch.

As for the DBL unit itself, I can confirm itís as robust and practical as ever, with a host of useful accessories such as base plates, plugs and hooks.