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eLightBulbs Blog > Left Handed Incandescent Light Bulbs?

Left Handed Incandescent Light Bulbs?

Posted by Blair Eisenbraun on Mar 24, 2011
Left Handed Incandescent Light Bulbs?

File this one under strange but true: you can get incandescent light bulbs with left-hand thread bases. These aren't your righty-tighty, lefty-loosey bulbs; for these, righty is wrongy!

Left Handed Incandescent Light Bulbs?
You may have seen left-handed tools; pliers, drills, can-openers, what have you.  You may not have seen left-hand thread light bulbs!  They're basically the same as any other standard incandescent save for the base: it's backwards, which makes it easier to install and remove light bulbs in left-hand thread sockets.  I suppose if someone wanted, they could construct a house that is fully left-hand friendly, and "socket to" all the righties!
 
Having known a lot of left-handed people, I've heard many of their laments.  "Why isn't this available in a left-handed version?" they ask, or "Nobody cares about left-handed people."  This is not true, evidenced by the many left-hand products on the market.  I've even seen left-handed mice and keyboards, which were quite interesting and allowed me to experience the frustration of left-handed people using right-handed equipment.
 
The left-handed versions of tools, computer equipment, and the like make perfect sense, but with something like a light bulb it makes less sense.  Spherical objects have no prominent side, and so there is no advantage to being left-handed or right-handed when installing/removing them as far as I can see.  I wonder why this bulb was made, especially when it also requires its own "backwards" socket?
 
I found out why!  Dave McLellan, the boss man here at eLightBulbs.com, explained that certain applications require a very special bulb with specific voltages and wattages.  In such applications, if a normal light bulb were to be installed and turned on, it would instantly fail, potentially exploding and causing all manner of mayhem.  Left-hand threads and sockets were created to prevent such situations.  The bulb I've linked in this post isn't one of the special voltage bulbs; perhaps at some point the special bulbs were no longer needed but people still enjoyed the left-hand thread.  Who knows?
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About the Author
Blair Eisenbraun
Blair is an incredibly versatile copywriter. He enjoys researching and mastering his subject matter and provides interesting and engaging commentary through his gift of writing. In his downtime, he is an avid gamer and enjoys finding the humor in life.
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