Instructables

anyone want to help? very small led project...

I have carfuly painted a extra set of macbook keyboard keys that i have with phosphorescent clear paint. I want to mount a little (as small as i can possible make it) box onto of the screen, in the middle, with a uv led in it (doesnt need to be high powered) so that it will cause the keys to illuminate to there full potential. what i need help with is wireing the project. i dont wanna use a usb port so im going to use a male to female usb coupler (http://www.mpja.com/productview.asp?product=15477+PL)... i want to wire the led into that so it can plug in and power the led and i can still use the usb port... Does this sound possible? can anyone give me tips or help? any opinions would also be apreciated!

*NOTE* UV LIGHT CAN BE DANGEROUS TO YOUR EYES!!!!!!!!!
That being said:

I've ordered UV LEDs off of ebay from Hong Kong usually you have to buy a fairly quantity like 50 or 100. Mine came out to about $0.30 a piece. These UV LEDs require 3.4-3.6 volts and use need to have the current limited somewhere in the range of 30-50ma (30 - 50 milli-amps). I have read somewhere else on Instructables that you could get them out of a device used for brightening teeth.

To drop the 5V USB power subtract 3.6V from 5V = 1.4V this voltage needs to be 'dropped' down using a resistor. Which also limits the amount of current flowing through the LED. Dividing 5V by .05 Amps (Ohms Law) gives you a value of 28 ohms for the amount of resistance.

I believe USB power supply is current limited meaning that it is a "stiff" current source so you might be able to use a lower resistance like a 10 ohm resistor. I'm not a 100% on that so don't quote me.

As for connecting it the link in a previous post gave a nice tutorial on how to build this type of device.

Be sure to observe polarity, connect the cathode side of the LED to the negative wire. If you don't know what this means read up on it.
phenoptix7 years ago
Any further news on this project?
sysadmn7 years ago
Start here:
http://www.instructables.com/id/E1OSW5LM9YET9K4IMM/.

You'll need to make sure the values are consistent with UV leds as well. You'll probably want to use a cheap usb cable for the connector and to place the leds. Not sure what you meant by using a cheap cable extender - did you mean you wanted to plug this in, and still be able to use the usb port? You might be able to get away with it, but only if the devices don't draw much current.

Good luck!
sysadmn sysadmn7 years ago
aiden1200007 years ago
what you could do is velcro a match box containing the uv led to the top of the screen and wire it to the usb by destroying an existing cable. you only need the red & black cables. usb is 5 volts, you can work out what resistor you need when you get thee led. its not the most pretty solution, but its all i can think of
(removed by author or community request)
well, aiden* alluded to it. All the wires inside your standard USB connection are color coded. the red and black wires are the 5v positive and negative. I *think* it's the middle pair. they carry no data, and are wired straight to the power bus. Other options would be to use wires off the backlight supply inside the laptop screen, or one of the other ports on the laptop.
aiden1200007 years ago
if you get a usb extension cable and cut the female and off, you will have a green a red a black and a white wire. you only need the red and black, this is your power source. you can use this http://www.instructables.com/id/E9NFEFO2ZGEV2Z9QKZ/ too wire up the leds because i dont know what to do with the leds, so im gonna have to read that aswell