My best Christmas present last year was a really good workbench magnifying light. As you get older, good task lighting becomes a must.
Older guys like me notice that improved lighting makes a difference when working on small electronics circuits. Working on breadboard pins and printed circuit boards requires a steady hand, as a result of 0.1″ spacing. With good lighting, tiny parts are easier to see and handle. With a good magnifier, you can make sure your solder joints are properly placed without overlap.
According to All About Vision, “As we age, muscles that control our pupil size and reaction to light lose some strength. This causes the pupil to become smaller and less responsive to changes in ambient lighting. Because of these changes, people in their 60s need three times more ambient light for comfortable reading than those in their 20s.”
Up until now, I have increased visibility by wearing a head mounted LED spotlight. At the same time, my “third hand” device provides a useful plastic magnifier. Okay, but not really good enough.
So, I bravely inserted a request for better lighting on my Christmas wish list last year.
Workbench Magnifying Light from Princess Auto
Check out Princess Auto for a great 5″ magnifying lamp, shown above. It comes with a 40″ adjustable arm that is well balanced with springs. Mounting is accomplished by a table mounting bracket or clamp. The light is 22 watts and the magnification is 1.75. This lamp is ideal for an electronics workbench or desk. At nearly six pounds, this light is fairly heavy. So, make sure you have a strong edge for secure mounting.
This lamp is well made and costs $75 in Canada. You can find similar models on Amazon for comparable prices.
The LED headlamp still comes in handy, though, since I am always dropping small screws and things on the carpet.