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D.I.Y Kino Flo build project
  • Hi all

    I'm planning to make four kino flo lights 2x 4ft 4Bank and 2x 2ft 4Bank. I'm in the parts sourcing phase at the moment and thought it might help me and others to discus it here.

    Kino Flo Manual (has dimensions, images, part numbers)

    more parts

    image Clear photo of Fixture Shell

    Excellent 5300k tubes

    Electronic ballasts, Philips HF-P 236 TL-D EIII 2 X 36W

    Corrugated Plastic 2.4 x 1.2

    Gooseneck Tubing

    image Baby wall plate

    I haven't been able to find a good four bank reflector so I will probably buy kino flo ones (they aren't too expensive) and they are important image

    What are those gold color rivets in the photo of the fixture shell?

    900 x 600 - 290K
  • 11 Replies sorted by
  • I'm following great stuff

  • Interesting stuff indeed. I'm following as well.

    you could probably get away with using any heavy duty rivets and nuts that are meant for steel work. I don't think they need to be the ones shown. I would imagine steel rivet with a nut on the end would be much easier to service should you find the need.

    Try not to pigeonhole yourself into making an exact replica of the original. Else you might as well buy the damn thing =)

  • Theshittywizard,

    What I wondering about the gold rivets is where they could be purchased (it doesn't have to be gold!) the ones on the back are useful for drilling screws through to fix the light to things directly.

  • @kujina

    I see. I misunderstood what you were looking for. You're looking for the actual grommets themselves.

    You can find grommets almost anywhere. I think you can even order them directly if you wish to have the exact same grommets.

    Hope that helps.

  • I remember reading somewhere that the original kinoflos work by over volt-ing the bulbs for more luminance output, at the cost of shorter bulb life. The have a minus green filter built into the bulb and only start to flicker at 1/10,000 sec and higher.

    If what I read is correct it might be hard to replicate the tech in the Kino ballast.

  • @cfreak you are correct. T12 tubes have what is called ersatz ripple which would be the flickering. A much more expensive ballast is needed for T12 tubes. Kino bulbs are also specifically balanced for their ballast. Maybe all of that is doable, but not economical.

    Since @kujina is going with T8 tubes, a 50/60hz ballast will be sufficient for flicker free lighting. I'm not sure about those specific bulbs that were linked above, but I know for a fact that the Phillips full spectrum bulbs run at 98 CRI (minimal color cast) but they are balanced at 5000k.

  • The kino flo tubes are brighter than the T8 tubes (5300k), around double the wattage but I don't think that equates to double the brightness. I'm looking to use a Philips "electronic" ballast so there shouldn't be any flicker problems.

    @theshittywizard I've looked into those grommets a bit more they are also called eyelets.

  • Can anybody suggest cable gauge/type?

  • You broke my concentration. Following... I want to throw in my experience with T8 from a terraristic point of view: I use a dimmable EVG (electronic ballast). I have 2x58 Watt it in my terrarium with FS20 remote dimmable control and allways wanted to build a Kino Flo like that, because it is dimmable, flicker free and you can throw in whatever T8 you want, as long as the wattage is fine with the EVG. Dimming does not introduce color shift and also there is absolutely no flicker up to 1/2000 sec.

  • Hey there, just wondering if you ever completed this project, and if you have any instructions on how to do it?


  • I'd be curious to know how this DIY version turned out as well.

    For a non-DIY version, there are some very cheap kino-style lights on Amazon that work really well with a little minus-green gel. They don't have all the features of kinos but for a fraction of the price, they are well worth it: