Something Old; Something New

Learning something new everyday can mean many different things. The emphasis can be on “learning:” Learning something new every day. It could be on “every day:” Learning something new every day. Today the emphasis is on the “new:” Learning something new every day. Since this is my blog, I get to define it however I want.

 

I’ve had a light in my house that hasn’t been working. I like this fixture. I’m disappointed that it hasn’t been working.

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Well fix it, you say.

But how shall I fix it? I reply.

This is no simple matter. It’s an older light fixture, and it has a circular, fluorescent bulb. Along with the bulb there a part called a ballast.

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The bulb (round) and the ballast (with the wires).

Failure of either of these two parts could have been the cause of the light not working. I’m not enough of an electrician to know which part is the culprit. So, I went to the big box home improvement store, and I found replacement parts but no good advice. Unfortunately, the cost of the two replacement parts was going to be more than I wanted to spend. And, the idea of buying them both, swapping them out to see which part was really needed, and then bringing back the unneeded part was more hassle than I wanted. Also, I didn’t want to discard this fixture and get a new one. I like this fixture. What to do?

 

I wandered into another part of the store, and I found an answer. And, what I found, if I could make it work, would have the added benefit of costing less than either one of the two parts that could have been bad in the original light.

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I found a small light fixture that would fit inside the globe of the original light fixture. All I had to do was remove the old bulb and ballast, cut a hole in the metal backing plate, and install the new fixture inside the old. With the globe back in place, it looks like the original fixture. But now it works!

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I make it sound really simple. And it really was simple. It just took a little creative thinking and couple of hours of work to make it all come together. But that’s what I’m talkin’ about today: Something new made from something old.

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