We have a 20X60 meter outdoor dressage arena and are thinking as the days get shorter we should get some lights up.
Those with experience---what will this entail? what did it cost you? How many/what kind? Don't need the arena to be lit up like a stadium--just enough for safe riding at night.
Do you need permission from the town?
Are you comfortable riding at twilight? If so, about 1 footcandle, or 10 lux will be a suitable level, but you may be happy with less. The number of fixtures and how high they're placed will depend on the wattage and light distribution curve. Armed with this, you can go to your local electrical supply house and talk with one of their (tongue firmly in cheek) lighting experts. The various manufacturers have booklets and/or software that "crunch the numbers".
Be careful that they don't oversell you. They'll try!
FWIW, the barn where I boarded had a ring about 140' X 200' and is well-lit by eight 1500 Watt Metal Halide fixtures that look something like this placed about 25' above the ground. The fixtures were used, from a car lot, and we had to invest a bit of sweat equity and a few hundred bucks in bulbs and ballasts to get them operating. They required two 220 Volt circuits. We did a lot of the grunt work digging trenches for the wiring, setting the poles and bolting the fixtures to the poles, so we don't really know what the equivalent costs would be.
Since you're illuminating about 1/3rd the area we are, you should be able to use three similar fixtures, one at A and one at C aimed the length of the arena and one at E or B aimed across the arena, powered by one 220 Volt circuit. You will experience some glare riding the long sides. Alternately, you could place them at K, H, and B. A lot will depend on the light distribution curves of the fixture.
One side of the property faces a residential neighborhood, so we aimed the fixtures accordingly.
Last edited by Frank B; Oct. 1, 2009 at 10:35 AM.
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