Some of the advantages of a well-lit working environment are as obvious as night and day. If you can more easily identify hazards then it's clearly going to be a safer site - but there are more subtle benefits. You shouldn't be underestimating the implications on health, for instance, with a gloomy interior risking eye strain and subsequent headaches. You're more readily able to spot what you need your productivity will improve, not to mention the quality of the finish.
At the same time, achieving all of those goals will depend on the type of equipment you choose, and just what it is you want your light to be doing.
Well, most of the time you'll want it to sit there being the bright spark in the room, enveloping you and your workspace in a reliable bubble of radiance just when and where you need it. At other times, of course, you'll need something handheld and directional that can access those awkward nooks and crannies. If you want to keep both your mitts in play, a handsfree solution can also, well, be very handy, and if you can securely clamp a lamp exactly where you need it that too wouldn't go amiss either.
It's here that the JCB Work Lights range enters the stage as the star turn because, unless it's darkness of the demonic variety you're fighting, it offers a solution for just about every type of gloom you can think of - but it's not just the breadth of the product line-up that shines. The latest energy-efficient LED technology makes for a highly effective level of output, all the units in the range feature adjustable brightness levels or variable dimming and, with adaptors that will allow for the use of 18V batteries from some of the leading power tool manufacturers, they are truly portable solutions.
Of course, think light and you might be thinking of the delicate thinness of an incandescent bulb but any brand that sports the JCB name in its iconic yellow and black needs the necessary site-ready robustness that the moniker implies. Consider that the JCB-WL-TUFFXONE was actually driven over by a van, and still remained operational, and you'll get the idea. Indeed, many of them have been drop tested from as much as 1.5m or 2m and benefit from IP65 levels of water and dust resistance.
So, let there be light - quite a lot of it, as it happens, because first out of the box on site was the JCB-SL-KONNECT 6500. The numerical part of that product name refers to the lumens which, for the uninitiated, is simply a brightness rating. For a relatively compact solution, 6500 lumens is a very high output, although four light settings can adjust it up or down between 100%, 75%, 50% or 25% of its maximum. That will comfortably give enough light to dispel the dark in practically any indoor application a small builder might encounter, whilst the unit can be positioned a long way from you to illuminate the maximum area. In addition. the IP65 protection makes it suitable for outdoor use.
Using the suitable adaptor -included in the box from JCB Work Lights - it will accept 18V JCB, DeWalt, Bosch, Makita, Milwaukee, Metabo and CAS batteries, or can be 110V/240V mains-powered. If you're using a Ii-ion power source, thanks to the frugal energy demands of LED, there's a very long run time here. This light also has a smaller sibling, the JCB-SL-KONNECT 4500 - with 4500 lumens. This version though doesn't come with the mains option.
The JCB-SL-TUFFDUALHybrid 2500 Lumen Site Light, powered either via its internal rechargeable battery or the supplied 110V/240V mains cable has many of the benefits of the KONNECT models but with a much higher level of control for the end user. Too much light can be almost as impeding as too little and an adjustment function via a dial means it can be dimmed to as low as 250 lumens, making it a very
versatile option. It also has a built in USB powerbank.
Now we come to the more dextrous performers, including the USB-C rechargeable JCB WL-FLEXTRA Dual Inspection/Work Light, which will reach the parts other can't. The 250mm long, 100 lumens snake light will find a home amongst plumbers and electricians, but you could envisage many more trades - including kitchen fitters, for example - discovering a use for it. Simply pull out the rubber cord from the main body, point and you will bring light to dark places. This is a tool that embraces multiple applications. The front features a 300 lumens work light with stepless dimming, it can be hand-held, and there's a mounting magnet and belt clip.
In your pocket
Continuing that multi-functioning theme, the USB-functioning theme, the USB-C rechargeable JCB-WL-POCKET II combines a 180 lumens torch for more directional use with a 800 lumens work light. The yellow rotating stand will prop it up on a flat surface, or the floor, but it's also fitted with a powerful magnet. Attach to a metal surface on a wall or ceiling and it will swivel through 180°. It also comes with stepless dimming, a battery status indicator, built in USB powerbank and a red static light for use in emergencies.
Across the globe
One of the most aesthetically pleasing options is the rechargeable JCB-WL-GLOBE, and it's a design perfectly in tune with its function. The cylindrical light can be removed from the magnetic base where, in use as a work light, the shape complements your palm. Once reattached, however, it can be secured on a metal surface, mounted on a tripod or hung via its hooks and will fully rotate, spreading 600 lumens of light around a wide area. It also comes with a built in USB powerbank for convenience.
The range is, in fact, so extensive that we'll be brightening the dark days of January with more from the JCB Work Lights range in the next issue.