Ambient LED Shelf Lighting





Introduction: Ambient LED Shelf Lighting

I found a few great instructables on here, and used a little info from each to create my own ambient shelf lighting. I'm not usually one to get too involved, but since I have taken so much from the site, I felt it was my duty to post my little project. :)

Step 1: Step 1

Okay, I guess here is where I list the parts. Basically all you need are the LEDs, resistors, sewing pins, batteries and some speaker wire. For fancy's sake, I used a project box, switch and battery holder too. To put it all together, you will need wire cutters/strippers (scissors will work in a pinch) and a soldering iron (I suppose you could even just twist them together if you had no tools)

Pic1: I had this little project box that was dug up to practice some wood burning. Decided to use if for this instead.

Pic 2: As you can see in the next picture, i installed a rocker switch on the side, and drilled a hole for the speaker wire to run through,

Pic 3: I plopped the battery holder inside, and ran the wires to the switch, and out the back. (For some reason these cheapo batteries think that 1.5v x 4 = 6.4?? )

Step 2: Step 2

Now for the dangerous part :) Yes, you may bleed.

I figured out which resistor was needed for the two colors (white and blue on 6.4v source). Don't ask me the specs on the resistors, because I punched the stats into an online calculator and used what it spit out.

So I soldered the resistor to the leg of the LED, and then the whole assembly to a sewing pin on either end. The picture describes it better than I could ever explain. :)

I then took my Spiky Light of Death, and pushed each end through either side of the wire. Remember that polarity matters, so make sure the + side of your Spiky Light of Death is pushed through the + side of the wire. Same goes for the - side.
(There is an Instructable here that shows a fella lighting his whole apartment this way. Might explain it a little better than I did, but I cant find the link now :(

Carry on this way, until you get to the length you want. Mine ended up about 3ft long.

Step 3: Step 4

I guess I should have said this in the previous step, but connect your light string to your power source, and your Spiky Lights of Death become Funky Light Art.

Thanks for checking it out. :)



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    16 Discussions

    hi there... thanks for the guide... how long does the lighting work on a set of batteries like that?

    2 replies

    In order to ensure that you never run out of power, you could simply omit the battery pack and instead purchase a small DC converter and use it to provide a constant source of power.  In a recent electrolysis project, I utilized the power source for a tattoo gun I had laying around, which provided switchable 3-12VDC.  This ran me about $20 when I first purchased it.  I would reccomend something like this if you intend to experiment with several projects calling for DC current.  I sincerely hope this helps.

    I have a similar thing and use a phone charger. I purchased it on eBay for £1.50. A 5v, 500mA (2.5W) charger can power about 15 LEDs. You could also use a solar panel, the cheap car battery topup solar panels you can get usually provide about 1W of power however, so you would need a couple.

    Hey, is this kind of lighting bright enough for lighting my entire room? I like the idea of super efficiency *without* the deadly chemicals, but If it's dim...

    Also, where's the best place to get LEDs in California?

    1 reply

    what leds are they? output wise im Lm? or lux? do you know would be interested looking at some of the new generation super bright LED's but not sure what a standard led puts out

    hello. i am new to instructables, and have been searching the projects to figure out how to use led lighting for a project. just wanted to say thanks for taking the time to post your project. it is beautiful. and of all the projects i read, yours seemed most user friendly in terms of wiring etc. i like the sewing pin conducter/ speaker wire idea. i finally took the plunge and joined instructables so i could post and say thanks. easy to just take the ideas, but it is the contributing that makes the site so great for the artist community. looking forward to working with this new medium! thank you. colleen (l.a.)

    1 reply

    we don't get many people as nice as you much around instructables... if you needed some help woth an LED project, i'd be glad to help you out... just as long as there is no microcontroller or PIC involvement...

    aww, kitty <3 dude.. thanks for this.. i didnt know it was this easy.. i was about to go do something totally more complicated. this works for me. :hi5:

    ideal for home usage, can you tell me where can I find the "online calculator" for the resistors? Thanks. A good one

    Cool! looks good. Welcome to the site. If you have any questions feel free to ask me or one of the staff.