Rainbow Pastel Garden Lamp





Introduction: Rainbow Pastel Garden Lamp

I've had Malibu Lights outside for years. Its nice having a big low voltage power supply to play with.

Lately I've been "upgrading" the lights. Led bulbs seemed the obvious progression but then I had a pumpkin LED go too far...


Even my umbrella got some Led's


So when my wife's Zen Garden Waterfall's pump died I couldn't throw it away. Something about its shape said "light me up", so I did.

Step 1: WS2812's and a Odd Find for the Center Form.

I wanted to use a string of addressable RGB led's. Adafruit has a nice library and a demo Arduino sketch that is mesmerizing....

While looking for a Piece of PVC for the core I spotted a container full of Crystal Light (ugh) iced tea cups. i save the empty's for mixing epoxy but now I had a use for the container itself....

I loosely wrapped the Led's around it and tried the demo. Looked pretty good. now I had to clean the container with some nail polish and stick the Led's on permanently. I drilled a hole at the end of he strip for the wires.

Step 2: How to Mount the Microcontroller

I wanted to use a bridge rectifier and a simple 7805 to drop the Malibu sets transformers output down to run the Led's and Micro.

The easiest choice was to 3d print a base. I even made a captive nut holder for a standard lamp hardware.

Step 3: Assembly and Testing

I drilled a hole in the bottom for the lamp hardware but it seemed flimsy so I 3d printed a shell to reinforce the end.

I ended up using an AT Tiny 85. It draws anywhere from 150ma to 500ma as it sequences through its colors.

Step 4: Programming the Chip

This is the hard way but it works.

I use a USBASP and some jumper wires.

Arduino as ISP would work too....

Step 5: I See More of These in My Future...

I liked the idea so much I stocked up on parts and made up a bunch of PCB's for these. Next to get upgraded is that lantern sitting out on the front porch....

If you want one of the boards check here:


Step 6: Hooking It Up

I decided to put it out by the side of the garage..

Now for the easy part. there is a pagoda light in the corner of that flower bed. Just had to tap it into the existing power wires with a couple of wire nuts.....

Time to trade in that little solar lantern on the other side too.

I decided to leave the bottom open so it doesn't fill up with water.

I may have to drill weep holes in the cap and put it on to keep little critters out....

Step 7: Night Time!

It's fairly bright. I may even get rid of that walkway light to the right of it....



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