View Full Version : Flicker fluorescent?

Bill Schnell
05-26-2008, 07:51 PM
Does any one know if it is possible to make a fluorescent light flicker (that creepy old hospital atmosphere). All of the flicker products I have seen say not to use them on fluorescent bulbs.

05-26-2008, 08:37 PM
Have you tried just leaving your fluorescent lights on all year? They should be flickering pretty well by the time you open.

05-26-2008, 09:04 PM
I work with fluorescent bulbs in my line of work. If you twist them just right in their sockets you can get them to flicker. You'll hear a buzzing electrical sound. If you twist them all the way in they will stay on. But just right before they fully go into socket, stop. They should stay in to place. SHOULD

Matt Marich
05-26-2008, 09:47 PM
We made dummy ones using the clear tubes sold to protect the bulbs from dropping glass when they burst. We fogged them with a dash of flat white and fogged them with flat black on the ends. The flashing was made using a regular small bulb inserted in one end and a flicker generator. They looked great in a dark room.


05-26-2008, 11:12 PM
There is another way to do this...if you wire a resistor or a device that would act like a resistor in series with the fluorescent lamp, then it will cause the light to randomly flicker on and off. I have used a standard light bulb and that limits the amount of current that gets to the ballast, if you use too high a wattage bulb, there will eventually be a break-even point and the fluorescent will stay lit, if you use too low a wattage, not enough current will get to the ballast so nothing will happen. You have to use trial and error to get it just right, or at least thats what i did. You can also try wiring a dimmer (potentiometer) to the light, that may work as well...i also painted the lamps with a light green color so they wouldnt be as bright and would have that "fluorescent camera on film" look. Just note that all this on and off will wear the life out of your lamps and ballasts really quickly.

Matt I like your idea, sounds like it worked pretty good.

damon carson
05-27-2008, 10:37 AM
Bill I have a light mixer I made a strobing florescent black light with years back. Just get a small dj light mixer w/ sound and maybe a chase feature. Plug in your florescent light fixture. And wa la instant Saw room.

05-27-2008, 10:24 PM
I like the fake flourescent bulb idea. Sounds like it would work great. Bill, if you get something to work and feel like sharing how about letting us know? Your not the only one looking for these lights lol Greg

Bill Schnell
05-28-2008, 08:00 AM
Thanks for the tips guys, we'll give it a try and see how it turns out.

05-28-2008, 08:28 PM
If you get a good quality dimmer (or a boobox) you can actually get a 4' fluorescent light to flicker randomly...I have several hooked up in our asylum area, and they work great.

Bill Schnell
06-04-2008, 03:40 PM
Greg (and anybody else who is interested), we decided to do the fake bulb method. We took fluorescent fixtures (no bulbs) that had a plastic cover. We rigged low watt regular bulbs inside (one bulb worked well, made it look like the other one had burned out). We lightly sprayed the cover with black spray paint to age it and put them on a flicker system. They look pretty good.

06-05-2008, 07:54 PM
Thanks for the info Bill. We will give it a try! Hope all is well on the other side of town. Good luck this season!