"A Tale of Two Strobe Bulbs"...


May 24, 2010
...or "Why I Hate So-Called 'Radio Shop' Installs"

Had an Explorer from a neighboring County's Sheriff's Department come in today for repairs. Main complaint was related to problems with strobe HAW system. I won't begin to list all the install issues I found...instead, I'll let these two photos speak for themselves:

[Broken External Image]:http://i499.photobucket.com/albums/rr351/C2Installs/IMG_0216.jpg

[Broken External Image]:http://i499.photobucket.com/albums/rr351/C2Installs/IMG_0217.jpg

The clear tube was damaged during the install. The mounting hole was not sized properly and de-burred, so they just forced the tube in and destroyed it. It was misfiring and had to be replaced.

The other tube is clear also, but I guess they wanted red. Yep, that is electrical tape wrapped around the bulb to make it red. Yep, WTF? Best thing is, it was mounted behind a red lens!

Install was done by a radio shop in Knoxville, TN. I pretty much hate radio shop installs. They might know radios, but they don't seem to know dick about warning system installations. Everything is half-azzed, sloppy, and just cobbled together. My hatred is based on my experiences with installs from at least 7 different radio shops in this area and one in Illinois. I'm sure there are an equal number of good shops, I just haven't found them yet.


Jun 23, 2010
Northville NY
What annoys me most about jobs like this one is that it had to be intentional to mess things up that badly.

How can they not drill a proper size hole (RTFM!) and then insert the head so it is not damaged?

How can they use vinyl tape to create a color filter and not expect it to cause problems from the start, let alone be totally ineffective?

How can they bill a customer full shop rate for inept and unprofessional work?

The answer is (of course) that most customers want it done cheap and fast plus they do not have the knowledge to recognize good work from bad.

In my experience, most radio shops don't do so good at installing radios either.


May 21, 2010

Forum Statistics

Latest member

About Us

  • Since 1997, eLightbars has been the premier venue for all things emergency warning equipment. Discussions, classified listings, pictures, videos, chat, & more! Our staff members strive to keep the forums organized and clutter-free. All of our offerings are free-of-charge with all costs offset by banner advertising. Premium offerings are available to improve your experience.

User Menu

Secure Browsing & Transactions

eLightbars.org uses SSL to secure all traffic between our server and your browsing device. All browsing and transactions within are secured by an SSL Certificate with high-strength encryption.