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Fighting off the symptoms of advancing years.


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As my age advances, so my eyesight is deteriating. In the past my eyesight was pretty good, but as age has taken its toll ( and working in the computer industry) I subsequently find it harder to focus on my workbench. The first step to overcome this was to start using reading glasses although I have never felt my vision is quite the same. The next stage as further deteriation occurred was to have custom varifocals allowing both near and far focus which is now my current situation.

 

For general reading I can use the varifocals but often find +1.5 reading glasses better having a greater field of view. When modelling I have found that it is sometimes beneficial to use +2.00 reading glasses instead. I am now finding focussing difficult if the subject is not sufficiently lit and struggle with inadequate lighting. My current modelling environment has a 3 bulb light unit fixed over the work area fitted with energy saving light bulbs (75watt equivalant each bulb) albeit mounted just below ceiling height. This is now proving insufficient. I tried dismantling a Hornby Gresley coach the other evening and really had difficulty.

 

I cannot be alone with the issue so I thought it would be worthwhile trying to see what other RMWeb member's do to offset these problems.

 

I currently have a collection of different magnifiers which cater for some situations. I also have an "optivisor" clone that is OK, but I don't particularly enjoy using it (unlike glasses you cannot just look over the top of it to watch the TV and it is not as comfortable!).

 

My first requirement is to improve the lighting situation. What do members recommend regarding lamp and bulb types that will cover a reasonable area (I would hope to be able to view the whole length of a 4mm coach at minimum): halogen, daylight, LED, fluorescent etc? Wattage? Angle poise, bankers light? Would I be better off with a magnifier/light combination?

 

Any suggestions/recommendations based on actual experience would be gratefully received.

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My first requirement is to improve the lighting situation. What do members recommend regarding lamp and bulb types that will cover a reasonable area (I would hope to be able to view the whole length of a 4mm coach at minimum): halogen, daylight, LED, fluorescent etc? Wattage? Angle poise, bankers light? Would I be better off with a magnifier/light combination?

 

 

I use - http://www.maplin.co...?moduleno=47980 - but mine was on special offer at GBP22 at Christmas! Light is bright and colour is good. I also use a headband magnifier I bought for GBP15 from Finishing Touches (no website - it's being rebuilt) - Ian and Sue Stewart - 07984 478395. Good value compared with other people selling the same stuff.

 

[Edit] No connection with Finishing Touches - I found them at Leamington/Warwick exhibition and then again at Sileby - their prices attracted me.

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I would suggest that you see an optician and explain exactly what you require to see at what viewing range once they have analysed an fully assessed your eyesight. I have a very similar problem with vision and while I was wearing cheap specs with the correct dioptre to correct my eyesight the tests found another problem which could be corrected by a lens to the right prescription. I also explained the viewing range which I needed and the prescription took that into account as well.

 

It ain't cheap I know but I do think seeing the right sort of professional is advisable when one's eyesight is involved.

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I use - http://www.maplin.co...?moduleno=47980 - but mine was on special offer at GBP22 at Christmas! Light is bright and colour is good. I also use a headband magnifier I bought for GBP15 from Finishing Touches (no website - it's being rebuilt) - Ian and Sue Stewart - 07984 478395. Good value compared with other people selling the same stuff.

 

[Edit] No connection with Finishing Touches - I found them at Leamington/Warwick exhibition and then again at Sileby - their prices attracted me.

 

Squires do a similar one for about £25, it does the job for me but I'd go along with talking to an optician and getting their assessment of your eyesight.

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I sympathise, having suffered myself. Didn't realise how much it had deteriorated until going for a drink with a friend about 5 years ago. He was still in the engineering industry and had been advised reading glaases. I tried his on and the difference was startling. My distant vision was and still is excellent, but close up had suffered the rigours of age, I was 49 at the time. I now have several pairs in several strengths. +1 for while on the PC and general wear in the house. +1.5 for reading and a pair of +2 for modelling, though when modelling I sometimes pop on a second pair. Like you, I am not a fan of optovisors. For lighting, I use an OTT-lite.

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Hi Mike,

 

It is a problem I encountered in my mid 40's when doing full panelled liveries, as deteriorating focus is insidious. For years I was able to buy magnifyers with screw thread lightbulbs (40watt) which gave a light gentle to the eyes. Trouble is the plastic goes brittle with heat from the bulbs after a time. They were around £25.00 each.

 

Then I splashed out almost £100.00 on a super-duper magnifyer with flourescent tube. Disaster!!!! Not only did the greenish light give me headache it made crimson lake look purplish brown with little contrast between this and black lining out.

 

So I went on t'internet to buy another bulb-magnifyer and guess what, they've all got tubes now! It's almost as bad as the button-up flies that have reappeared on mens trousers!

 

The old bulb magnifyer has been put back into service (photo attached). If you find one, snap it up as I'm sure it will solve your problems. Also let me know where you bought it....biggrin.gif

Larry G.

post-6680-127222380197.jpg

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I would suggest that you see an optician and explain exactly what you require to see at what viewing range once they have analysed an fully assessed your eyesight. I have a very similar problem with vision and while I was wearing cheap specs with the correct dioptre to correct my eyesight the tests found another problem which could be corrected by a lens to the right prescription. I also explained the viewing range which I needed and the prescription took that into account as well.

 

It ain't cheap I know but I do think seeing the right sort of professional is advisable when one's eyesight is involved.

 

That's basically what I did Mike - I have an old pair of frames with lenses to my normal prescription, but a greater magnification (IIRC it's 2.75 or so). It's much better than any additional encumbrance, though I cant walk far in the house with them onbiggrin.gif

 

I also use this lamp from Hobbycraft, (and which was only 20 quid when I got it, plus I got an opening offercool.gif). I think the Wirral lads use something similar.

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Afraid I have been in similar situation for many years:

I use all three of the suggestions listed above.

An optivisor type headband (ex Squires)

a magnifying arm with circular light (it is bigger and brighter than the Maplins one and others seen at shows. I got it from aa neighbour who is a dentist - he uses similar to work on dentures. The magnification is 3x.

I also have two pairs of special spectacles made up for the job. They are very heavy and a bit like looking through the bottom of a champagne bottle.

 

It is not that my prescription has changed - it has been the same for 20 years - but I just find it more comfortable using high magnification when building kits which happens most days.

 

They all act as a sort of safety glass and I have lost count of the number of times a bit of brass or a boiling flux has been prevented from entering my eye.

 

For those who do not wear spectacles please take the precaution of putting at least something in front of your eyes while modelling.

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As my age advances, so my eyesight is deteriating. In the past my eyesight was pretty good, but as age has taken its toll ( and working in the computer industry) I subsequently find it harder to focus on my workbench. The first step to overcome this was to start using reading glasses although I have never felt my vision is quite the same. The next stage as further deteriation occurred was to have custom varifocals allowing both near and far focus which is now my current situation.

 

For general reading I can use the varifocals but often find +1.5 reading glasses better having a greater field of view. When modelling I have found that it is sometimes beneficial to use +2.00 reading glasses instead. I am now finding focussing difficult if the subject is not sufficiently lit and struggle with inadequate lighting. My current modelling environment has a 3 bulb light unit fixed over the work area fitted with energy saving light bulbs (75watt equivalant each bulb) albeit mounted just below ceiling height. This is now proving insufficient. I tried dismantling a Hornby Gresley coach the other evening and really had difficulty.

 

I cannot be alone with the issue so I thought it would be worthwhile trying to see what other RMWeb member's do to offset these problems.

 

I currently have a collection of different magnifiers which cater for some situations. I also have an "optivisor" clone that is OK, but I don't particularly enjoy using it (unlike glasses you cannot just look over the top of it to watch the TV and it is not as comfortable!).

 

My first requirement is to improve the lighting situation. What do members recommend regarding lamp and bulb types that will cover a reasonable area (I would hope to be able to view the whole length of a 4mm coach at minimum): halogen, daylight, LED, fluorescent etc? Wattage? Angle poise, bankers light? Would I be better off with a magnifier/light combination?

 

Any suggestions/recommendations based on actual experience would be gratefully received.

 

 

 

Hi Mike

 

In the workshop bench area we have plenty of natural light & 6 pairs of 4ft flourescent tubes with daylight tubes inserted. On the bench I use an Ottlite, along with verifocal glasses with Nikon glass & x2 clip on magnifier. This for me works a treat & Tony Sissons also likes the light in the workshop so it must be good:-)) He also has posh set of them glasses with loupes in them, but then he is considerably older than me:-))

 

Good to hear that you are modelling away Darn Sarf.

 

Hope all is good

 

Tim

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A familiar story indeed. I use a wide variety of magnifiers, though mostly a simple 3x loupe from Expo that clips to my spectacles (unlike Larry's dentist :lol: ) However, for me, the main thing is lighting. I can read under normal tungsten bulbs, but prefer halogen ones, but for modelling, I've come to rely on 'daylight' lights.

...I also use this lamp from Hobbycraft, (and which was only 20 quid when I got it, plus I got an opening offercool.gif)...

 

I use a similar one and also have another daylight tube on an anglepoise type bracket. Usually I just use one or the other but, for really close work, I often use both placing one either side of the work. I swear by them, detailed modelling work would be much more difficult without them.

 

Nick.

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My eyesight has also gradually deteriorated over the past five years and more noticeably over the past two. My work involves Motion Picture Cameras and Lenses for Film and TV work so checking lenses for scale and focus is getting harder and harder as is checking the ground-glass formats for the camera operators to look-through and frame the shot(cross-hairs and a frame outlines in other words), and then there's the difficulty in modelling and repairs that I'm always into. I also fish regularly and wear my specs on a lanyard so's they're in easy reach for hook tying etc..

I went to a local optician who told me that apart from a slight stigma in one eye(common to many people) my vision was normal, a prescription wasn't necessary and that a pair of reading specs with a dioptre strength of +2.00 was all I needed.

Fluorescent light, and reading or close-work for prolonged periods has in my case probably made me strain more, and I think my lense muscles have grown a little lazy which I attribute to age, but I rely on an angle poise lamp with a 60watt bulb, but I cannot get on with energy savers. I find the light a dull yellowy hue, and annoying when you're used to a constant strength bulb. I am also in my 50's

 

jules

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Just had a thoguht. My dentist friend showed me his dental loupe a few weeks ago. They are worn attached to ones tsestacles. Just the job but they are priced £100's to a £1000 a time.

 

Spectacles, surely? Otherwise, the mind boggles!

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Just had a thoguht. My dentist friend showed me his dental loupe a few weeks ago. They are worn attached to ones tsestacles. Just the job but they are priced £100's to a £1000 a time.

Coach,

I presume your Dentist is Multi Talented and specialises in Teeth as well as Piles. I cant spell HEMORRHOIDS.

Regards,Derek.

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Guest dilbert

Have a chat with your opthamologist - I always have a problem for a few weeks in adjusting to the latest pair of varifocals - a part of that problem is also due to astigmatism in one eye - I don't think there is a generic response to this type of problem, you'll need to work out the most comfortable solution.

 

I find a pair of reading specs based on the latest prescription does the trick - I use an OTT light source which also has a built-in magnifier for more delicate tasks...dilbert

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One point a bit missed is fluorescent lighting in general, not too good for any long term work lighting. Factories use them, but really the best light source is non fluorescent, and not low energy bulbs.

 

 

Although the ordinary bulb is being phased out, halogen glass bulbs are fully available(and will continue), giving a good steady white light. They look like ordinary bulbs, but contain the halogen bulb in the centre, and are rated as mains bulbs.

 

I use a several in the workshop, over each machine, not so cheap, but the light is much better quality than low energy bulbs.

 

If you use low energy types then use several at once, and the new duel types from GE (2x60w equivalent), 22w consumption, these seem the best, but I use two or three to illuminate the bench, with a long fluorescent bulb on as well. There is also a anglepoise with a 50 watt halogen in it for fine work.

 

It is all to do with light level, we get less sensitive when older, and it needs more light.

 

By the way the eyeglasses with loupes added are not as expensive as £1000 as mentioned, nearer £300 to £400, I will look it up, there is a local supplier, and we used them at work, as well as manufacturing another type. Dental types are special in that they are canted inwards and more adjustable for very close distances.

 

Frankly for models an ordinary pair of reading spectacles at 3 to 4 dioptre should work for close work, but make sure it is a metal frame and gently bend the frames to centre the lenses inwards towards the focal point, this makes the world of difference to strain free viewing.

 

Stephen

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The old bulb magnifier has been put back into service (photo attached). If you find one, snap it up as I'm sure it will solve your problems. Also let me know where you bought it....biggrin.gif

Larry,

 

That design is one I bought for industrial use several decades ago, and I also vouch for it's excellence, and that of many similar products from the same maker. The supplier was 'Thousand and One Lamps Ltd.' a trading arm of Luxo UK http://www.luxo.co.uk/

 

One point a bit missed is fluorescent lighting in general, not too good for any long term work lighting. Factories use them, but really the best light source is non fluorescent, and not low energy bulbs.

 

 

Although the ordinary bulb is being phased out, halogen glass bulbs are fully available(and will continue), giving a good steady white light. They look like ordinary bulbs, but contain the halogen bulb in the centre, and are rated as mains bulbs.

For better colour rendition, accuity of focus, and much else, a continuous spectrum output from an incandescent source is always preferable. And the more of it you have, the more your pupils can 'stop down', which works in just the same way as in a photographic optic, giving superior depth of focus on the retina. Because of the eye's adaption we fail to perceive just how weak normal indoor illumination is compared to direct sunlight. Push your artificial illumination up to some respectable percentage of sunlight, and it is amazing how one's visual acuity 'improves'. Mind you, what happens to your electric bill may also be amazing...

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I do hope that Larry's last post was a typo!!

 

Dad burnit..... Spectacles it is!laugh.gif

 

Regarding dental and surgical loupes :

 

http://www.eagleoptical.com/surgical_optical_loupes.htm

http://www.sheervision.com/flip-up-surgical-dental-loupes.aspx

 

I followed the link to http://www.luxo.co.uk/ but could not see one with a normal light bulb. Maybe another casualty of EEC?

 

Larry

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I'm heavily on the plus side and have worn contacts for years... My eye doc just kept bumping up the numbers, not to mention he was now fitting me with inferior disposable lenses to those he prescribed for years. He said they quit making them... I was having a rotten time seeing at various distances and was suffering at the model flying field. Turns out one of our members is an eye doc and recommends I try multi-focal lenses. Well I made an appointment with him and he fitted me for lenses LOWER in power by up to -1.75 what the other doc had me fitted, also the lenses were fitted specifically left and right, never before have I had staggered lenses... Took about a month to get accustomed to, but I can once again see at any distance, close up is just a matter of looking slightly down rather than straight on, instantly when I look straight on I can see distance.

 

Point here is... Just because you've been seeing the same doc for 10+ years, doesn't mean he's up on all your needs... My new doc says there's differing 'theories' in the practice and some docs are bound to supplier commitments (why I was being stuck with J&J lenses over B&L) - - Get a 2nd opinion!

 

Task lighting, close up... Halogen lighting is key to seeing properly, it is the whitest spectrum and shows color the most naturally. I use a simple desk light with an adjustable arm, it has two intensities using a 12v 50w halogen bulb... Having seen those magnifier/light combos it wouldn't take much for a fella to wire up an under-cabinet 'hockey puck' style 12v 50w in place of existing bulbs in the unit, heck you might even be able to rewire it so the switch is functional.

 

aurora-ucl101-halogen-volt-voltage-kitchen-8-4_medium.jpg

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I would heartedly recommend halogen for desk lamps etc., the spectrum is wide unlike low energy, and also I would warn a bit about the alternative LED desk lamps, the spectrum in very tight, and colour rendition on the models may be poor. Great for black and white reading, an intense white/blue light, but painting models might be more difficult.

 

 

There are better multi LED lamps that correct the problem with multiple types of LED within the lighting element, but these cost more.

 

For say an angle poise lamp, Halogen bulbs are made from 25 W to 100W, they are much brighter for each wattage than conventional bulbs, so a lower rating will suffice. They are made in small BC and ES and conventional BC/ES fits, and do not need a transformer, they are mains rated.

 

Low energy bulbs are improving, and the latest new types can now be dimmed, and higher ratings are now done by GE as dual element in one bulb types, that give a better output for the wattage.

 

It looks like an ordinary low energy bulb, but doubles the light output.(2x60 equivalent, claiming 120 watt output in terms of light.) I have changed all low energy to this type in the workshop, great improvement, but still short of the mains Halogen bulbs on colour balance.

 

The close up Dental Loupes mentioned are expensive because the optics are not just a single lens, but a compound corrected design rather along the formulae for a weak microscope objective. They also are sealed for sterilisation,(nothing to do with "ones tsestacles." of course!!laugh.gif), and fully adjustable to aim the lenses on a radial line to the focus point, giving a clear strain free view.

Stephen.

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For say an angle poise lamp, Halogen bulbs are made from 25 W to 100W, they are much brighter for each wattage than conventional bulbs, so a lower rating will suffice. They are made in small BC and ES and conventional BC/ES fits, and do not need a transformer, they are mains rated.

Stephen, apologies if I've missed this but where are these typically available from? I doubt Wilkinsons will have thembiggrin.gif

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Stephen, apologies if I've missed this but where are these typically available from? I doubt Wilkinsons will have thembiggrin.gif

 

I get them at Sainburys , they stock them in larger stores, but any electrical supplier will have them,( Mains Halogen bulbs), online and mail order do them as well, they seem widely available, but be warned they are not cheap, but last much longer than conventional bulbs. I think I have seen these in Wilkinson, but can't be sure, they stock 12 volt type for use on transformers and in units and lamps with transformers.

The bargain of a couple of years ago was the Home base telescopic desk lamp at £3.99, complete with halogen bulb and 12 volt transformer built in!!!!. These make very good spot lights for machines, and a clean white flicker free light.

They are still made, but cost has increased a bit.

 

Osram are the main maker of the Halogen mains GLS types etc.

 

post-6750-127237329299.jpg

 

 

Stephen

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