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Can anyone let me know how to provide power via molex to these flashlight LED's?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Not sure if this is where I should post this, but basically I want to light up my resevoir with this bunch of LED's I got from a click button flashlight using the power from a molex connector. I have a couple molex to 3-pin connectors that I could cut and solder onto this to provide the power. I just need to know if I should get rid of the ground or what not. Also, I was thinking about maybe just taking one of these LED's out and putting it in a G1/4th cap. Is it as easy as attaching the red and black wires to the LED itself? Thanks!




Edited by RavageTheEarth - 5/13/13 at 12:17pm
post #2 of 9
I am not sure if this is correct, buy depending on the voltage, just take the common ground and attach it to a ground, and solder a small power wire to each and run it to the appropriate voltage. I would try it with 5v from the molex first, and you could just touch the wires to one led first as long as you are careful.
post #3 of 9
What battery was attached? That will tell you what voltage they used. That board is wired in parallel, so whatever the battery voltage is, is about what you will need from the molex.
 
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post #4 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hydraulic View Post

I am not sure if this is correct, buy depending on the voltage, just take the common ground and attach it to a ground, and solder a small power wire to each and run it to the appropriate voltage. I would try it with 5v from the molex first, and you could just touch the wires to one led first as long as you are careful.

^-This pretty much. Take what ever voltage was being supplied by the batteries and match that to the output. You shouldn't have any problems undervolting the LEDs but overvolting will be a little show. You may need to throw a resister in but without knowing exactly what LEDs they are it is hard to say.
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post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hydraulic View Post

I am not sure if this is correct, buy depending on the voltage, just take the common ground and attach it to a ground, and solder a small power wire to each and run it to the appropriate voltage. I would try it with 5v from the molex first, and you could just touch the wires to one led first as long as you are careful.

Is that little spike coming out of the side a ground?
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Also, it was being run with three AAA batteries.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hydraulic View Post

I am not sure if this is correct, buy depending on the voltage, just take the common ground and attach it to a ground, and solder a small power wire to each and run it to the appropriate voltage. I would try it with 5v from the molex first, and you could just touch the wires to one led first as long as you are careful.

I don't really understand this. I appreciate the response though. remeber that I have zero experience with elctronics and electricity.

just take the common ground and attach it to a ground, and solder a small power wire to each and run it to the appropriate voltage

Ok, so is the common ground that spike? You say "each ground". Does that mean there are two grounds? You say "attach it to a ground" what would an example of that be? I just have no idea what this entire explanation means. I would like to know where exactly on this PCB I attach the wires. I'm guessing I attach the power cables to the spring, but I would have to ground it to prevent it from sparking, right?
post #7 of 9
chances are the pcb from the flashlight does not operate on either 5v, or 12v.

I see that it was ran on three AAA batteries? 5v will be doable, though they will be slightly overvolted. Half a volt too much is trivial.

12v? You are asking for smoke. I actually just put a 12v strip of LEDs in the top of my case, pointing down. Hidden behind one of the structural rails. I just cut off a molex from a cheap fan, and soldered the wires, then wrapped them in heat shrink... But those were designed for a car (clearance bin at the parts store).
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post #8 of 9
Ahh sorry I didn't realize you weren't that sure. Well we can start at the basics then. Yes the spring wire is the positive side while the tab sticking up on the side is the ground. First take the batteries you had in the flashlight and add the voltage for each up if they are wired in series (ie positive to negative so 3 AAA would be 1.5+1.5+1.5= 4.5v) if they are parallel then the voltage remains the same.

Now to wire this thing up I would take and bend the grounding tab back towards the battery side. Then solder on a black lead wire to that tab. For the positive side I would trim the spring wire down and solder a red wire to that. Then run the both leads to a molex connector. The red wire is the 5v and the blacks are ground. The yellow wire is for 12v so don't go near that unless the LEDs can take it.

Now you did mention this is for a reservoir. If there is any chance this thing will get wet just don't attempt it all. If there is a small chance of it getting wet tap every bare lead with shrink wrap and/or electrical tape then pull out the hot glue gun and gob the PCB up on both sides to make it somewhat water tight.

Edit: Ahh sorry I had a bit of a moment there. The spring wire is neg or ground and the tab would be positive. Long day at work for me. Just look at the way the batteries were connected and that will double check it for you. And you won't hurt the LEDs if it is backwards just as long as you don't overvolt them.
Edited by Kylepdalton - 5/13/13 at 1:45pm
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post #9 of 9
omg, i was in the other thread and someone deleted it or removed it after i hit "submit" lost tons of info for you.

anyways..
hit radio shack up, pick up LEDs in w/e color you want and size. they go from 3mm to 10mm if i remember correctly.
also they have round pcb that you can build your own light system like that.
this will let you put the lights into a configuration that will work for you. also.. those leds you have there are junk. i have tried to make those work in other projects many times.
soldering to them is a pain, and i would consider myself a master solder slinger. (tried the word solderer but that looks really weird)

anyways after you get a custom led ring setup then what you can do is encase the pcb and some of the leds in a white epoxy.
i use loctite 5min in the large dispensers you would find at lowes for around $15. to color it i use tempera powder.
tempera powder goes a LONGGGGG way with just a little bit. also i find it helps harden up the epoxy much faster and seems to have a much harder bond. so i usually color everything, even if you aren't going to see it.
if you wrap the pcb in a tube shape with wax paper you can easily pour in some epoxy on both the bottom and top sides to make the LEDs waterproof.
just make sure you do one side at a time. also set up an area to hold them in place so any bumps don't knock it over while curing.
also make your wires that will connect to power very long, this way you don't need to add extra wire if you want to reroute the lines. once happy with where they will connect then cut them to size. wires cheap and its better to do it right the first time.

Mixing epoxy
i do not like the epoxy mix tubes, you'll see them at lowes if you head over there to check that all out.
most times they dont do a very good job of mixing the epoxy, leave epoxy inside the tube, and generally cost a lot more.
the tempera powder goes a long way, use just a very small amount, mix it with only one of the 2 parts of resin, either will do, then mix the premixed with the other in a 50/50 mix and bam. ready to drizzle it on what you need.
i always mix my epoxy in a plastic container, one that you would get from something thats vacuum packaged.. once you open a package like that, its just going to hit the trash can anyways so no need to get something else messy. also i use wendys spoons. i snap off where the spoon meets the handle area and that is the section i mix it with.
once done you can toss all the extra left on the spoon handle and plastic mix cup/tray/thing.

this will light up the water better if submerged into the liquid, or if you dont want to submerge it, you'll still have it water proof so it doesnt short out the system.
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