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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-21-2013, 07:01 PM Thread Starter
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smart LED - Build log

Task#1 - Cargo Light


I have 4 of these -


120 degree - 3W - Cool White

should light up the cargo area pretty well..eh?

Anyone have any ideas as to how to mount these behind the plastic cover at the very rear of the roof of a coupe? I'm obviously drilling holes, but I haven't found any recessed mounts for the CREE stars...I wonder if superglue would do the job?
I've superglued regular LED's into drilled holes in the past..my previous car had several thousand LEDs..in various locations..










but I've never flush mounted CREE LEDs..until now.. ;)

Seeing as LEDs are really cheap, and I really enjoy lighting things up, The smart will likely be lit up as well..tastefully of course..



Stay tuned for pictures!
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-21-2013, 07:13 PM
 
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Seeing as LEDs are really cheap, and I really enjoy lighting things up, The smart will likely be lit up as well..tastefully of course..



Stay tuned for pictures!
Bet you love Christmas!
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-21-2013, 07:31 PM Thread Starter
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Bet you love Christmas!
Absolutely!
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2013, 04:15 AM
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2013, 07:20 AM Thread Starter
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That's what I'm doing..although I'm most likely tapping into the SAM for "rear hatch open", and I'm also using a 1ohm 5w resistor in series with the LEDs - don't wanna blow 'em, say during a jump or an alternator/VRM malfunction..

The supply voltage is not always 12v either, since I plan on the occasional opening of the hatch with the car running...with the car running it should be around 13.8-14.6v
So with a worst case scenario of 14.6v, each LED runs at 3.65v - more than the designed forward voltage of 3.6v, ie. the current will start creeping above 750mA pretty quick..which will more than likely result in at least one LED going poof!

Great writeup though - Thanks!
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2013, 07:22 AM Thread Starter
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yes, I know 5w is overkill - no point in skimping on this one..we're talking pennies here.. ;)
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2013, 07:31 AM
 
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Here's a nifty calculator for LED circuits......

LED Calculator - Current limiting resistor calculator for LED arrays
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2013, 05:30 PM Thread Starter
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Just finished building a current regulated circuit with a LM317T, set to 625mA with two 1Ohm 5W resistors in series. It's operating 125mA below the normal operating current of the LEDs, so I'm under powering the LEDs..consistently, regardless of voltage variations of the supply voltage! Mission accomplished!

It's running cool, and the heatsink is way oversized, but insted of spending money on one, I grabbed an old Pentium 60 heatsink out of the stash, and just drilled a hole in it! Yes i used silicone paste...Works like a charm!

Good God these things are bright!! :eek:

Now for mounting into the plastic panel!
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-23-2013, 08:58 PM Thread Starter
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Some more pics from last night
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-23-2013, 09:02 PM Thread Starter
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I ended up wiring this in to the dome light switch, by drilling out two of the plastic "rivets" holding the metal on, and using a really small fine thread screw, the exact diameter of the hole in the metal. I used some old molex connectors, like the ones you see in a computer, for quick disconnects. I'm happy with it, and it's bright to boot! (see what i did there?!)
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