Arena lighting; Need ideas for cost effective but safe! - The Horse Forum
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  • 1 Post By DressageIsToDance
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post #1 of 8 Old 12-05-2013, 07:33 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NC
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Arena lighting; Need ideas for cost effective but safe!

Now that the time has changed, we are having some daylight issues at the barn. Most of the kids aren't able to get to the barn until 4 at the earliest, and by the time they are tacked and mounted it is 4:30. It doesn't get dark until 5:30-6, however, most of them jump, and by the time they are warmed up and have worked on the flat and are ready, it is so dim it makes jumping difficult and dangerous.

Another issue is, everyone has to go in the same lesson - the kids are in different levels and many have certain problems with their ponies. My trainer has special exercises for them to do, but that is hard when everyone is together and needs to work on something different.

My trainer leases her barn. She doesn't want to over-invest in improvements to a property she doesn't own. Ideally, she likes to make her "improvements" things that she could uproot and take with her if she wanted or needed to move.

Now...we need lights for a small square arena. Maybe the size of 2 large dressage arenas, give or take. Ideally, set up to be able to be moved. As I said, she doesn't want or have a lot to put into "extras", so this needs to be the cheapest option that is also safe and effective.

Ideas, plans, estimates?

Cinnamon Whiskey 11 y/o 15hh Chestnut AQHA mare, 2'6 Jumpers
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post #2 of 8 Old 12-05-2013, 07:36 PM
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Cariboo, British Columbia
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For under a $100, my husband put up a halogen outdoor light for my arena, it's plugged into a outlet at the barn attached by an extension cord. I unplugged it and roll up the cord when not in use, which is most of the time.
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post #3 of 8 Old 12-05-2013, 07:43 PM
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Upstate, NY
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I like the idea of LED shop lights, the price is salty but the amount of light is great, also not a lot of heat output like halogen lights (I use halogen worklights regularly but not sure how comfortable I would be hanging in a barn with cobwebs on them because of the heat)
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post #4 of 8 Old 12-06-2013, 10:12 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NC
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What did you mount the light on? I know that seems like a stupid question, lol. But I know they need to be higher up. Like, telephone poles? How much are they?

tim62988, it's for an outdoor arena, so the heat wouldn't make it a fire issue.

Cinnamon Whiskey 11 y/o 15hh Chestnut AQHA mare, 2'6 Jumpers
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post #5 of 8 Old 12-06-2013, 11:35 AM
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Ontario
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I'd go with the 4' florescents that hold two bulbs. If there's a refit store in your area that's a good place to shop for the fixtures. The bulbs are cheap and they use very little electricity.
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post #6 of 8 Old 12-06-2013, 11:40 AM
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Southern Ontario, Canada
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If it was my arena in a permanent set up, I would recommend LED in a heartbeat – significant extra upfront investment however the payback comes quickly with reduced electricity usage etc.

For a low-cost temporary set up, the big halogen spotlights seems like the best option to me – they can be picked up at Home Depot for under 10 bucks each. If you want the ones with multiple heads and all the hardware so that they just tripod from the ground they cost quite a bit more, however that's another option as well.

The LED spotlights are also great, however their primary benefit is reduced electricity usage – if you're not paying for the Hydro where you are honestly just go for the halogen options. You should be able to run two, probably three 500 W halogen floods from a regular 15 amp receptacle.

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post #7 of 8 Old 12-06-2013, 12:32 PM Thread Starter
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Sounds like that will be the route we go...we just need safety and funcationality for the most part.
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post #8 of 8 Old 12-06-2013, 01:48 PM
Join Date: Jul 2010
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You should be able to get those like in a shop or garage that have chains that hook to the ceiling and plug in. We have a LOT of them in my 4-car garage and my barn and our office. Our office just took advantage of a state grant to replace ALL the old units, which you cannot buy anymore, with new LED's, which last a LOT longer and are MUCH brighter.
If you and/or your trainer need to purchase lights, shop around for the best deal and don't worry about leaving some of your purchase behind. It happens in business all of the time, and people do often invest $ in rental units that they don't recoup bc of needs.
We rent two interconnected suites for our office and are required by our contract to repair/replace anything under $500.00, so we've put in two toilets, added some storage space that we can't take with us. It's very much the same.

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