LED Headlight for Velomobile

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Introduction: LED Headlight for Velomobile

This instructable will show you how to construct a LED based headlight for a Velomobile.

I replaced the standard headlight on my home made 'Alleweder' Velomobile with two Luxeon power leds with two different lenses, one for a small bundel for long distance illumination, the other with a broader bundle for close distance.

Step 1: Parts Needed

here is an image of the parts you need

Step 2: Mark Position of Leds and Lenses on the Heatsink

mark position of LEDs and lenses on the heatsink and drill the holes.

Step 3: Place the LEDs

After drilling the holes, first apply some heath conductive compound.
Then screw the LEDs on the heatsink, and solder them together in series.

Step 4: Connect Electronics

Now you can solder the PCB with the buckpuck LED driver according to the diagram.

Step 5: Put It Together

First fix the lenses, glue them to the case using a glue gun and put the PCB into the case. Some isolation foam is used to keep the electronics from the case.

Step 6: Finally Mount the Headlight Into the Bicycle

The headlight is mounted into the velomobile. It get is power from a battery and is switched using a switch on the dashboard. details about the construction of the velomobile can be found here.

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    user

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    14 Comments

    user

    Too cool. I wish I had a P50 but might want to fit larger wheels to it as our roads in Canada often suffer from frost heave.

    Could you please post an image of your LED headlights illuminating the road. Thanks in advance.

    I wonder if you can make an electric velomobile, that uses solar to continually deliver a charge to the batteries.

    You have a beautiful velomobile!
    You might be interested in lightening your headlights still further. Tiny round MR16 / MR11 sockets can be mounted directly to your bulkhead and just power them with a 12 V li-ion 1800 mah lithium battery (used for spy cameras) that are available on eBay for $25.00 delivered. The battery comes with all electronics, a charger, a USB power plug, an interior courtesy light and even has a nice switch on it already. MR16 'bulbs' come with conical reflectors and lenses built in. You don't need the thick wires and insulating tape with low voltage 12V. No electronic printed circuit board and no heat sinks are needed, either. You can use flat 22 gauge speaker wire that has adhesive on it so the wires can be hidden, too. LED bulbs on Ebay can be had with lumen values of 380, too.

    e.g.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/12V-5VDC-Super-rechargeable-li-ion-battery-1800-mAH_W0QQitemZ180213284369QQihZ008QQcategoryZ48516QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

    and

    http://cgi.ebay.com/MR16-3-2W-2-5-WHITE-CREE-LED-XLamp-XR-E-320-LUMEN-BULB_W0QQitemZ190196873313QQihZ009QQcategoryZ20706QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

    and

    http://www.21st-century-goods.com/page/21st/CTGY/FW

    well Luxeons only consume 1, 3, or 5 watts at most so with this setup and 5 watts consumption on each LED they are only using about 10 watts to run both instead of 15 to run one mr16 so he should get 1/3 more run off of the same batteries with the LED setup. I know there are losses in the buck puck but they generally run at or above 90% efficiency so that would be 10.2 watts but still a significant savings. LEDs also have a lifetime of around fifty thousand hours instead of the maybe five thousand with the filament light.

    The lifetime of dynamo driven filament bulbs, or LED lights used with filament bulb front lights are typically compromised by the failure rate of the filament light. What I'm trying to say [but not being very successfully], is that in dynamo driven circuits, once a filament bulb fails, the other lamp [whether LED or filament] will be overdriven and is likely to fail rapidly. Even LED lamps which are protected from lamp failure [at least the Bausch & Muller rear lights], are only protected for a short time. All modern LED lighting circuits are superior to incandescent in terms of efficiency and reliability, whether run from batteries or dynamo / generator. you also get a choice of colour. Purpose designed optics are important. Note: using white LEDs with a coloured filter is very inefficient, compared with using coloured LEDs.

    MR16 LED lamps require about 3 watts at the very most, not 15. If you're thinking of halogen MR16's, that's a natural mistake. The setup I described runs for six to seven hours with one MR16 LED at 240 lumen, so wiring up two would double consumption of electricity, but the battery has that big reservoir.

    The MR16 is also a nice light source, but compared to the luxeon they are quite expensive. I use a 12V 2Ah lead gel cell. It is somewhat heavier than your lithium battery, but thats no problem in a velomobile. It is very cheap and robust and easy to charge.