Introduction: LED Plank Light

Picture of LED Plank Light

While browsing at Pinterest I found a picture of a LED Plank Light an fell immediately in love with the design. The build is actually ridiculously easy. You will need:

  • 1 LED Strip (about 1m)
  • 2 Wood Planks
  • 1 Smaller Wood Plank in the height of your LED Stripes height
  • some Wood Glue

Step 1: Glueing

Picture of Glueing

First glue the small plank onto one of the two lager planks, then glue the LED Srtip around the edge of the smaller plank.

After drying test the LED since it is nearly impossible to redo after :)

Then glue the second bigger Plank on top.

Done :)

Step 2: Easy and Beautiful

Picture of Easy and Beautiful

The build took about 10 Minutes :)


panderson-hoelzer made it! (author)2017-02-27

I made two with some extra wood at work and some LED strips (with AC adapters) I found on Amazon

mwangim (author)2015-08-27

Hi? lovely project. What was the size of the planks of the wood?

TimmyGray made it! (author)2015-08-15

My son and I made this one in about an hour. We used screws instead of glue and attached a base. The best thing about this is that lights have a remote to change the colour. Thanks for the great idea!

vosrare made it! (author)2015-06-29

I used larger 1/8" ply, and dressed up the power cord with braided sheathing. I hung it horizontally over my television for an ambient effect.

zjf (author)vosrare2015-07-21

How did you manage to hide all the cords?

bmaverick (author)2015-06-09

Well, the wood is easy to locate locally. Question, where do you find the LED strips and the switch+plug ???

skirmishmonkey (author)bmaverick2015-06-11


abachmann (author)bmaverick2015-06-10

Men simply have them. ;-) (y)

bodenz (author)bmaverick2015-06-09

All of that can be purchased pretty cheap on ebay! Ive bought a few from there and they work great

Raitis (author)2015-07-11

For how it looks - this is ridiculously easy!

I'd hide the power converter block behind the plank for even better looks if there's enough cable. :)

kainxavier (author)2015-06-13

I've read cheap Chinese LED strips lose their brightness rather quickly. Any thoughts? I'd like to design stuff using them, but don't want to waste money on something that won't last.

mack_jigger (author)kainxavier2015-07-02

I have a blue strip under my computer desk for more than 18 months, I have an RGB in the living-room for 2 years now, no decay and I have a real black light UV strip around a tablet on top of my computer, this has been there for so long I don't remember and the seller isn't no longer in my purchase history. All chinese, all good prices and they work great.

jimvandamme (author)kainxavier2015-06-27

I've had a strip light in my kitchen for a year and a half, with no dimming. The key is to keep the current below the limit, and cool them well. Toys and flashlights that just rely on the limiting resistance of a battery won't last long.

astevens7 made it! (author)2015-06-19

Utterly brilliant.

Tangski (author)2015-06-17

I am creating a panel like this for a you costs for the plug in parts for this lighting? What is the actual size of your panel to do only 1 meter of lighting...looks like about 12" wide by about 3 feet tall?? Please reply if you have time.

deanvlue made it! (author)2015-06-13

I made one but with acrylic

diy_bloke (author)deanvlue2015-06-15

looks great

deanvlue (author)deanvlue2015-06-13

it hangs from two slim wires(I guess I bought iron wires, don't remember). it gives a nice warm light to ceiling and underneath.

esomers (author)deanvlue2015-06-14

Can you post a picture of it at night? :) Would love to see the effect it has

Tangski (author)2015-06-09

ooops, found the info above...missed that as I did not see the strip! Anyway, another way to get it to radiate a bit more is to add plexi glass trim around it...catches the light. I am going to add a half circle of that on each side, (of course onto the back piece which is then covered a bit by the top piece), to show a bit of full moon behind with maybe a cut out or two of bats flying over moon...which might be an interesting touch for the display I am working thanks for the ideas!!:) Cheers!

Sarah C J (author)Tangski2015-06-14

Heck, just jam some white plastic straws into the crack. Diffusion right off.

BES105 (author)2015-06-13

Thank you for the idea...... When I make mine I will try to make the inside plank wider so that I can get more light out....... I take it you will stain it later on to bring out the wood grain.....Thks

RabT (author)2015-06-13

Would make for cool shelving

DalaisLlama (author)2015-06-13

Voted, <3 'd, n shared on FB!! Kudos, great instructable!!!

DalaisLlama (author)2015-06-13

Voted, <3 'd, n shared on FB!! Kudos, great instructable!!!

lasusipop (author)2015-06-09

Whoa! I have a lot of bamboo wood floor planks that were left from my bedroom gonna try this!

DalaisLlama (author)lasusipop2015-06-13

Oooh! I have bamboo poles!! Endless ideas out of this instructable!! Awesome!

CazzPhoenix (author)2015-06-10

I'm going to make 2, wired together, wall mounted and offset by a few inches. They will be at the end of a hallway and not visible from the side so the back board is unnecessary. I will also stain the wood a very dark, but not quite black color.

This is awesome and has clearly inspired a lot of variation. I hope others post pics in this thread when they're done. :-)

DalaisLlama (author)CazzPhoenix2015-06-13

I would love to see your pics if/when u build em up!

DalaisLlama (author)2015-06-13

Multi-colored remote control light cycle options avail at Rona! Cant WAIT To build one!!! Might add concrete or welded steel base !! THANKS for the inspiration!!! Great instructable!!

jeanniel1 (author)2015-06-13

Whoa! So simple and easy to do! Great idea!

PerfectPixel (author)2015-06-13

I think I have my next project! (author)2015-06-10

maybe add some white paint coat on the inside to help reflect the light by the planks...

and, more important, how much heat do these LEDs produce if used for long time? maybe replace the small plank with an alluminum U profile to act as heat sink?

beats1234 (author)ceico.sk2015-06-11

Almost no heat. I stick these to everything and never turn them off.

skirmishmonkey (author)2015-06-11

Love the design. Suggestion, a 3rd board the width of the outer two with a rabbet routed into it that the assembly lamp sits in at 90degrees, and glued would make a base so it could be free standing anywhere.

Ryan MacKenzie (author)2015-06-09

Love it, thanks for sharing

Wired_Mist (author)2015-06-09

Simple and Beautifull

Nice Job !

YaënD (author)2015-06-09

great and simple : genius.

kakungulu (author)2015-06-09

Simple and beautiful. My contribution: cover in foil the inside surfaces to minimize light absorbtion by the planks.

joe.lyddon.7 (author)2015-06-09

Very COOL project with many interesting modifications possible to make things better!

I picture a long plank going across the wall top to the ceiling with LEDs only going across the bottom part... for COOL indirect lighting...

Or... drop it down a little & have LEDs top & bottom for more Ceiling indirect lighting to both ceiling and wall...

Possibly hanging it using a French Cleat to make installation very simple.

Thank you very much for the inspiration!

kimsanamm (author)2015-06-09

Looks great. Is it just freestanding or is it attached to the wall ?

If I make one I will make it with the front plank screwed on with screws

through the other two planks from the back side so I can get to the LED strip

to fix it or replace it. For the same reason I would not use glue on the strip light.

You could make a nice lighted valence in front of curtains like this. I can think of many ways to adapt this system in many other places.

Thank you for your efforts.

jakwagenaar (author)2015-06-09

Definitely doing this on Saturday. Very nice idee, thank you!

Will however tweak it a little bit:

1. I will make a wall-mounted planklight.

2. The inside plank will be evenly smaller all around so that the light emission is the same on all sides.

This cool idea has so many possible applications!

Tangski (author)2015-06-09

can you show the LED strip please? I would like to see what they look like before everything is all glued up!??:) Thanks buddy...would like to use this for a set on bats! Would be a great illumination panel with text~! Cheers Vicki

wfinnigan (author)2015-06-09

That would also be great using color changing LED

thekanester (author)2015-06-09

Hey, they say the best ideas are the simplest. I think this is extremely pleasing for the effort and technical ability required. Great stuff!

VladM3 (author)2015-06-09

Awesome. I will have to try this. I like the idea that bobjacksonjr had of using foil-backed urethane insulation board. An idea I had was to make the center plank out of plexiglass/acrylic and cut out the middle of the plank so that I can insert the LED strip. It's hard to describe the idea properly, but I think it would result in more even lighting around the whole thing (diffuse glow). However, I do not know if this would increase light levels or reduce them.

Sorry for the bad drawing, I whipped it up in Paint.

amccarter (author)2015-06-09

Where did you get the LED Strip? How much?

I'm thinking of using this for the back of a set of sleek bedside tables.

makerspace_sh (author)amccarter2015-06-09

The LED Strips are commonly available here in Switzerland. It did cost CHF 19.-

Yandle (author)makerspace_sh2015-06-09

For anyone interested google says: 19 Swiss Franc equals 20.39 USD

Also, awesome idea, I'm going to build one!

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