Convert Broken Desk Lamp to RGB LED

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Introduction: Convert Broken Desk Lamp to RGB LED

About: We're a makerspace at the Denver Public Library! We specialize in digital media creation (music, video, games) but are pushing out to do more electronics, sewing, and anything else fun.

I had a broken wall powered led desk lamp and converted it to a 12v battery powered RGB LED light.

Step 1: Start Taking Apart

First we start by removing the diffuser and pulling out the old L.E.D.'s

Step 2: Placing the LED's

Now we put in the 12v RGB LED strip. These LED's came with 3M adhesive already to go.

Step 3: Soldering Connections to RGB LED's

I got a 4-pin JST SM Plug from adafruit and soldered it to the RGB strip and added some shrink wrap.

I connected the male 4-pin JST SM Plug to the female and soldered the USB cable to it.

Step 4: Finding the Connections

I connected the USB cable I previously soldered to the 4-pin JST SM Plug and started to play with the pins to find were the + was.

To see were the colors are, try touching the negative wires to the other pins. When you find the color make note, and solder the wires to the right pins. I used red to show the + wire and used green, white, and black for the negative wires to differentiate them. It would be nice to use colors that corresponded to the RGB LEDs if you have them available. Use what you got just keep track!

Step 5: Project Enclosure

I took a Project Enclosure (5x2" from Radioshack) and cut out a port for a female USB connection.

I used a USB DIY Connector Shell - Type A Socket from Adafruit and soldered the 4 wires, added some shrink wrap, then mounted to the Project enclosure.

Step 6: Lets Get Wired!

I connected the ground wire to the top of the three pins on the switches.

Step 7: Done!

This is what it should look like.

Step 8: Lable the Buttons

I used a label maker to create the binary on/off and the RGB for the colors.

Now enjoy!

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    7 Comments

    I have, and when I get some extra cash this will be modified with neopixels and wireless arduino. Can't wait.

    I'd also add a label to the USB port, saying that it's a 12V output. Just in case, if anyone ever decides to charge their phone from that port for example ... ;) Preferably use some other connector for high voltages like this

    1 reply

    Good point! Thanks for the tip.

    Looks really nice but i would recommend using potentiometers inline with the switches that way you will be able to select from a wider spectrum of colors

    1 reply

    And the pots will burn !

    That looks really nice. Where did you get the RGB LED strip? I'd like to try this out myself.

    1 reply

    I have a friend who's brother worked for a kiosk manufacturer and the RGB LED's I used were pulled from the trash. Here is a link to some inexpensive RGB LED strips.