Series and Spec Sheets

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Contents

Overview

eLumit is a search engine that aims to be the "go-to" lighting source for specifiers. Records must be presented consistently and logically; in order to do so, efforts should be made to mirror the manufacturer's product hierarchy while adhering to eLumit's simple organizational structure (top down): Manufacturer > Series > Spec Sheets > Products

The following text shows eLumit's information hierarchy as displayed in the search results:

Manufacturer SeriesName Series Spec Sheet name

Products are associated with spec sheets and can be viewed by expanding the results below each spec sheet record. The following image is a screen shot of an actual search result.

As part of the entry process, you will need to familiarize yourself with a manufacturer's lineup, choose Series names, associate spec sheets to those series and create a spec sheet name (or description) for each spec sheet.

Existing Entry References

To reference recent entries that closely follow our organization and naming schemes, compare Allscape or Se'lux to eLumit's records. For entry with more exceptions to the rule, see Gotham Lighting, Peerless Lighting, Translite Sonoma or Traxon. For all entries, compare the manufacturer's pages with their entry on the public site. Remember to keep in mind eLumit is a US-based website and the manufacturer's product line represented on eLumit should only be for products available in the US.

Click here to try an eLumit search. Simply enter some keywords, select a manufacturer or any other drop downs. After you get search results to return, notice that eLumit records are organized by manufacturer, series, and spec sheets.

Spec Sheets

Snapshot of a typical spec sheet from Amerlux' Evoke series, recessed accent light.

Spec Sheets (or Specification Sheets) are documents, usually in pdf form, prepared by lighting fixture manufacturers and present significant product information for lighting fixtures. Spec sheets are used by lighting designers (and other specifiers) as part of the design process and construction contract documents. Spec sheet information can include, but is not limited to: Identifying product name and description, parent series or product family name(s), applications, housing materials, mounting, reflectors, optics, labels, lamping, product image, product line drawings, dimensions, electrical, ordering matrix with options, company logo, company contact information.

How a Spec Sheet is Used

Specifiers often have a strict set of requirements they must meet in their fixture selection process (like energy codes, physical space restrictions, fire codes, etc.) and the information found on a spec sheet assists them in making that decision. Specifiers use these spec sheets in the design process to select the appropriate options. The act of selecting the options within a spec sheet produces a specific version of the product and specifies the product, thus giving this pdf document the name "specification sheet" or spec sheet. The records we create derived from the spec sheets represent significant options (like different lamp options) and results in what eLumit calls a "product."

For many projects, spec sheets are compiled into a package to represent all the fixtures selected. Spec sheets facilitate the ordering or “specification” of those fixtures and are a form of documentation. If you recall in the Industry Overview, spec sheets are a vital part of the specification process, through to the actual construction.

Spec Sheet candidates

The terms submittal sheets, cut sheets, brochures or catalog pages are often used interchangeably with spec sheets. Often the document we choose may indeed be listed under these other names and will be an acceptable choice for spec sheets. Other times these documents will be available in addition to spec sheets; they will have similar information, but will not necessarily be the same. When reviewing a manufacturer's website, you will need to assess what is the best document to serve as a spec sheet.

Sometimes a manufacturer will introduce a new product with a catalog or brochure only, which can typically hold the equivalent information of several spec sheets. These documents are typically made into printed materials distributed locally to architects and other designers. These documents are often highly stylized and rich in photos and color but serve as poor candidates for spec sheets. The optimal spec sheet likely has only one photo to identify the product, and possibly some line drawings displaying dimensions. The rest of the spec sheet is information rich and contains a lot of text, neatly formatted. Submittals, on the other hand, may not even contain a photo and may have the same or less information. Since eLumit serves as a search tool for various designers, engineers, contractors throughout the project, the spec sheet is the best choice since it usually offers the best mix of product images, information design and brevity.

Creating a Spec Sheet Name

To determine a proper spec sheet name, look at all the spec sheets within the proposed series. The spec sheet name should include any text easily identified as header or title text for the spec sheet (aside from the Series name, if present). The spec sheet name should not include any term which does not appear in the header or title text for the spec sheet.

If a word appears more than once in the header or title text for the spec sheet, or if the word "series" appears, do not include them in the spec sheet name unless the omission would make the name non-sensical.

The following terms (if highlighted as header text in the title) should be included in the spec sheet name:

  • Nickname, Catalog name prefix
  • Size (4” [write as 4 in], 2x2, etc.)
  • Description of distribution (medium, wide)
  • Lamp/Bulb Shape or Envelope (A19, MR-16, BT-15, PAR MH, T5, T8)
  • Source type (Fluorescent, Incandescent, MH, HPS, HID)
  • Any special features (decorative components, secondary source, optics)
  • Line Voltage
  • Low Voltage
  • Integral Transformer
  • Remote Transformer

If the title of the spec sheet has the following, do not include it (unless it is the only differentiating option between spec sheets):

  • Voltage
  • Brand name lamps
  • Wattage
  • Base
  • the word "lamp"

You may also omit redundant or unnecessary terms that would normally qualify for spec sheet names, like "luminaires." The term luminaires refers to lighting fixtures, and being a lighting search engine, the word luminaire or luminaires is not necessary.

The following characters can cause errors in the system and should not be used: " '  % & and the symbol for Trademark.

Including the Catalog Number prefix when not highlighted in the title text

The prefix of a product's catalog number should also be included in the spec sheet name if inclusion enhances the ability of the user to readily locate that spec sheet in a search of the public site. This is useful if several spec sheets in the series are largely indistinguishable from each other due to similar names. The catalog number prefix then acts as an identifier to users. If you decide to include the prefix in the spec sheet name, the decision should be appropriate for all spec sheet names in that series, and implemented accordingly.

Series

Series represent a high level grouping of a particular manufacturer's spec sheets based on a unique name.

Series names are linked on the public site and clicking on the series names will result in a search for all spec sheets in that series. Currently series must be unique and should not share the same name across different manufacturers. One exception is "manufacturers" that are actually different brands under the same parent company; these brands must also intentionally share these series names (ie Sconces series for Tech Lighting, 2 thousand degrees and tiella).

Choosing a Series Name

To determine a proper series name, assess the spec sheet naming structure on the manufacturer's website. Choose a name from the manufacturer provided names, which are grouped together accordingly to some logic (similar design, theme, lamp type, application etc.). The naming of a series will, unfortunately, be subject to some subjectivity. Also noteworthy - the word "Series" is appended to the Series name when displayed, so do not use the word "Series" in the Series name.

The following screen shot shows Linear Lighting's website and the product hierarchy. Several spec sheets share the potential series name: RondaLite. If you consider a name one level higher, "Rounds" meets most of the same requirements for a series name but is a bit too vague and generic. If you consider a level beyond simply "RondaLite", you would be considered names like "RondaLite 4" and "RondaLite 5". While these also can technically be series names, the level of detail may be too specific. However, if all these sub-categories like "RondaLite 4" and "RondaLite 5" both had dozens of spec sheets within each of them, a case could be made to choose these names as series names.

The following images show a closer look at the webpage and spec sheet for a specific product. The spec sheet also shows the potential series name.

When you are working on a manufacturer with data already present on eLumit, reference the existing series structure on eLumit. Keep in mind that existing names are not necessarily above current naming procedure; often times data changes after the original naming structure is determined and so the current series name may no longer be the most appropriate. Therefore take into consideration the entire product hierarchy at the time of entry.

Series and Spec Sheet formatting (case)

A top goal for eLumit is to be user friendly, accessible, and ultimately a better resource for manufacturer information than the manufacturer's site. To do so data entry needs to have a clear and consistent method for entry.

Series names should always be capitalized (first letter only), followed by lower case letters. Exceptions can be made if, and only if, the manufacturer shows a strong and consistent preference for a specific method of capitalization (or lack thereof). Series names will likely have to be trademarked and always displayed with identical formatting. This shows that the manufacturer clearly intends the formatting/case of the name to be part of the products brand image. Amerlux's Evoke series does not meet these requirements. Despite having EVOKE in capital letters in the spec sheet, the website often presents Evoke with "E" capitalized and the following letters in lower case.

Similarly, spec sheet names should also shy away from using all caps (or other special capitalization styles). Unless a specific brand name is mentioned that requires special capitalization, Spec Sheet names should remain innocuous.

Examples

Some examples of innocuous name formatting

Bollard IVB70MH Flat Top Die-Cast Aluminum MH T3/T5
IVT111 Vortech Stainless Steel Low Voltage Up-Down Light
Metal Halide - Remote Ballast CK

A strong and consistent preference is displayed by the following examples: io Lighting - at the time of this writing (October 13 2009) io's brand logo is almost always represented in lower case form. The website and spec sheets all contain the lower case versions of this image. This brand preference is expressed also through the naming of their series, like "line 1.5". If you view their spec sheet here: manufacturer site or hosted you can see how "line" is trademarked and the intent to show lower case letters is clear.

In situations concerning the option to show all lower case series names, using lower case names is acceptable. A weaker ambiguous case can be seen here with Focal Point's "intelligent downlight," or "id". In situations concerning the option to show all CAPS, the preference is for the standard presentation, capitalizing the first letter and following with lower case letters. The goal here is to prevent usage of ALL CAPS unless absolutely necessary.

Entering Spec Sheets and Series

To enter spec sheets, first visit our Admin Site. Please use your provided username and password. You may change your password (under "Modify My Profile" when you first log in.

Adding a spec sheet

  • Click the "Add" link next to "Spec Sheet" under "Product Management".
  • Select your assigned manufacturer from the drop down list.
  • Select the series in which you want to associate the spec sheet. If no suitable series exist, type in a new series name in the New Series field.
  • Create a spec sheet name to identify the spec sheet amongst others in the series and within this manufacturer.
  • Copy and paste the URL of the spec sheet from the manufacturer's website into the URL field. (For dynamically generated spec sheet URLs, copy the link from the manufacturer's website that generates the pdf url, and not the final generated URL.)
  • Click Submit to save your work.

At this point the record should be created and your screen will return to the Admin home page. If you wish to check your entries, use the "Modify" Spec Sheet link described below.

Modifying a spec sheet

  • Click the "Modify" link next to "Spec Sheet" under "Product Management".
  • Search for your desired spec sheet using any combination of the three fields provided: Company name(manufacturer), Series, or Spec Sheet Name. Unfortunately the Series and Spec Sheet Name fields will only return results for exact matches.
  • Click the "Modify" next to your desired spec sheet.
  • Update your desired field(s) (except the manufacturer drop down field) to your desired text. Do not rename the "Spec Sheet Name" field unless an error prompts you to do so. This field is automatically generated and should not be confused with the "Public Search Spec Sheet Name" field, which is the spec sheet name field entered when a spec sheet record is created.

If you want to change the manufacturer field, that spec sheet record should be created new.

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