LED’s are a great way to learn about circuits and how to build a circuit. They are a load of fun to tinker around with and have unlimited application potentials. In other words, nothing wrong with a little bit a light to see things better and with LED’s. Well, they are small light weight and consume minimum power. Home-brew a custom LED enclosure with junk parts found around your garage and shed some light on the issue!
LED or a “Light Emitting Diode” just in case you were curious This aged lamp technology continues to evolve and for kicks Ill mention that LED’s are implemented into a wide range of applications. From NASA, law enforcement, all the way down to consumers based products. LED’s can be used anywhere and are very useful. Unfortunately a prefabricated strip of LED’s 1 meter long can cost you up to $20 USD! This is ridiculous granted the strip is not customized and you can purchases a bag of 100 off eBay for half that cost. Folks this is why we home-brew our “stuff” and customize our gear around here. Best of all, build, mod or fabricate all with inexpensive part or simply in what I like to call, Part Harvesting aka taking parts from a dead machine. Part Harvesting became a regular practice. Until I had a garage of my own, my wife had her own thoughts and comments about this “junk” I can assure you.
Well with the winter equinox approaching in a few months and my long commutes left me in need for some floor lights in the mobile. With a number of my electrical switches near my feet, i needed to install some LED’s. With my growing knowledge of electrical circuits and soldering I learned that building a LED circuit simple. Don’t know how to solder? Well this project is for you.
- Surgical scissors , Razor Blade and File-used for trimming my plastic casing (Harbor Freight)
- Solder and Solder Iron – (Radio Shack)
- Wire Cutters (Harbor Freight)
- Philips Screw Driver (Harbor Freight)
Supplies / Components
- 4 Red LED’s ($1.59 per 2 @ Radio Shack)
- 1 100 Ohm Resistor (I used this excellent LED Calculator)
- 1 foot 18 gauge wire ($0.69 Home depot)
- Plastic Case – I part harvested an Old RFID Unit
- Bread board – In which i cut to size ( $2.00 @ Radio Shack)
Turning this into a Practical Mobile Application:
Obviously we are working with DC power. I simply wired the (+)positive wire of my LED enclosure to my fuse box. Specifically the main head light fuse/circuit. The reasoning behind this was when the head lights were switched on, the LED’s would switch on. . The ground is obviously wired onto the nearest ground!