Use bright LEDs to replace florescent circular light in magnifier work lamp. Let there be light!
A medium difficulty Instructable to fix a circular magnifier work lamp by converting to a very low energy, high reliability alternative light source that avoids using mercury contaminated florescent light bulbs.
Step 1: Background to the LED light bulb idea.
Ok, so I cannot turn down a challenge either. I bought this really nice, nearly new, Magnifier Work Lamp for only $4 in a local Thrift Shop. Great bargain, says I, these regularly retail for $50 to $100 and this was a good one. So what if the bulb is blown, says I, as I noticed it would not light when I plugged it in before buying. New bulbs can not cost that much, right? Hahaha. What a bargain, says I!
At home, I tried easy fix #1... replace the bulb... Darn! Still not working!
Followed with easy fix #2... take apart the power box near the base. Yay! Found a wire shorted beneath the cover plate screw. Noted the electrical flash marks by the screw hole. See pix. Repaired insulation and tested the lamp. Darn again!
Next was easy fix #3... take the light head apart (instructions below) Triple Darn! Looked good.
Most likely, the little lamp starter card part (mine was heat-shrink in black) was blown during the short circuit in the lower power box.
Spent the next few days in electrical supply stores learning that the little lamp starter card part that leads power to the lamp is not available in my area. Crap Darn! Just not going to be my week was it? Better get this fixed or I just blew my $4 and possibly my reputation.