If so, then you should build yourself a Recycled Computer Power Supply Lantern!
Using salvaged, repurposed, and reused components, we'll build a 12V/11w electric lantern.
This all started recently when I was talking with a friend at the Milwaukee Makerspace. I was working on a simple wiring project and chatting and the friend showed me a couple of 5ah lead acid batteries he salvaged, which were perfectly good, and he was giving to anybody who wanted one. It's a great size rechargeable battery, and the size and shape reminded me of the "old-fashioned" lanterns that use a 9V dry cell. That, plus a discussion of zombie movies made me wonder - Do I have the skills to not only build a portable light from little more than scrap materials, but also build something better than I could buy?
I took it as a challenge, and proceeded to build the Power Supply Lantern.
Step 1: Tools & Materials
Nearly all materials for this project were recycled, salvaged, or reused. The project was based on the materials that I had on hand. If you want to build something similar, you might have to buy something. Better yet, why don't you build a project using just the materials YOU have on hand, and see what you come up with!
Dead computer power supply
12V landscape lighting bulb
12V rechargeable battery - 5AH or other size that fits inside power supply
Foam or other scrap spacing material
1/4" crimp-on spade terminals
Electric tape or heat-shrink
You might notice that I didn't list either a switch or any wire in the list of materials. That's because we will re-use the switch, wiring, and power port already in the power supply.
Tools are basic, that no respectable DIY'er would be without, but when it comes down to it, most could all be replaced with a Swiss Army Knife or Leatherman.
Phillips Screw Driver
Drill and bits