Introduction: How to Attach Fiber Optic Filament to an LED

This is the first step in making a piece of dot-lit LED cloth. You will need .75mm optical fiber, clear vinyl hose (1/4" x .170"), high-bright IC RGB LEDs (a preassembled strand, or you could do this over the lens of any LED), and hot glue.

Cut the hose into pieces about 1 - 1-1/2 inch long, flat on one end and diagonally cut on the other. Cut about 10 pieces of filament to fit into the end of the hose (10 per LED). Put a cut bit of hose over the lens of the LED with the diagonal cut end facing out - sometimes it's hard to make the hose go over the lens, but you can dip the end in a little soapy water to get it to slide on better, or just lick it :)

Put the filament into the hose attached to the lens. Make sure that all the pieces of filament are snug against the lens, and then shoot a little hot glue into the hose at the lowest point of the diagonal cut. Quickly! twirl all the filament strands so that the glue is spread over all of them, and then if you are brave you can swipe the remnants of the hot glue off the join with your finger, and hold a thumb against the glue join to keep it in place while it cools. PLEASE NOTE!! HOT GLUE IS VERY HOT!! If you touch it when it's too hot you can burn yourself badly. PLEASE BE CAREFUL when touching unset hot glue. I've got tons of burn scars from this stuff so play with it at your own risk guys! 

When the glue is set - voila! Fancy LED light coming out of the ends of your strands of fiber! 

Comments

author
metalhead8711 (author)2014-02-19

Quick question. Are the leds you're using diffused? Or it doesn't matter?

author
afreeland (author)2011-08-11

Looks good...simple and it seems to do a good job. I think it would look really good with solid fiber like this http://www.wiedamark.com/fiberopticsolidcore.aspx...thanks for the tutorial

author
lukku (author)afreeland2011-08-13

Thank you! I have been wanting to get some solid core and play around with it - looks like it's time to do that now :)

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More by lukku:How to make a fiber optic light diffuser with a dot of hot glueHow to get more light out of a single strand of optical fiber attached to an LEDHow to attach fiber optic filament to an LED
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