Introduction: Recycled Illuminator
I have salvaged old glass-insulator plate chains from high voltage power lines. These power lines were renovated to have higher capacity and voltage, so the supporting poles and insulator plates were dismantled and thrown to the ground. The plates do normally form a chain of insulator plates, so the required distance between pole and power line can be achieved. Normally approximately 6 plates are used on 50-100kV lines.
The illuminator is built with 12VDC LED strips that DO NOT HAVE silicone.
The reason for this is that the white light from the LEDs emit light and heat which "browns out" the silicone from the LED strip within 5 months.
Step 1: Cut the T-stud
Use your metal jacksaw and cut the T-shaped end of the metal bolt. This T-bolt is normally used for chaining the plates together. The cut-out stud will be used in the mounting step.
Step 2: Make a LED-strip Mounting Ring
Place the glass plate on your workbench over a short plastic 100 mm tube, this way you can have a good support and the plate does not rotate.
Cut a 10 mm wide ring from the same 100 mm plastic tube. The LED-strip will be mounted to this ring.
Step 3: Prepare the LED-strip Mounter
Solder 2 multi strand cables to the LED-strip and drill a 4 mm hole to the plastic ring. Guide the cables trough the plastic ring hole so that you can attach the LED-strip outside the ring as seen in the photos.
Place the ring with LED-strips to the center of the plate and guide the cables against the middle stud, mounting the cable with a plastic cable-tie.
Step 4: Test the Soldering and Connections
Test the LED-strip functionality with a 12 VDC power supply or a battery. Do not proceed before all LEDs glow brightly trough the glass plate.
Step 5: Prepare for the Epoxy Fill
Make a support plate which is holding the plates above the floor level, letting the big metal part go trough a large round hole you drill or saw.
Step 6: Epoxy Resin Insulation Pour and Final Steps
Mix epoxy resin (2 cups of plastic and 1 cup hardener) together and stir approximately 3 minutes.
Pour epoxy to the illuminator and let it be hardened. Depending of temperature and amount of hardener the epoxy will hard out within next day.
Take the metal stud which you saw away in the beginning, drill a 4mm hole into it and attach a chain to the hole.
Hang the plate from the chain and connect the wires to an old PC power supply 12VDC lines.
Activate the ATX supply with a jumper, so you get power up.
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