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Solar powered 3D lantern converting existing LED fairy lights? Answered

Hi, I am trying to make a 3d lantern for my art project at college. I want to solar power it using Led fairy lights and a solar power rechargeable cell, I need to pull it all apart and just use the Led's of one colour, and put it all back together. The solar power cell is PCB wired to have 6 different functions. If I gut it and then rewire, how will I know which points to solder to just function as an on and off setting? I notice that the existing fairy lights have up to 4 wires running from them skipping to different colours in the circuit along the 10m length. Help. I have to have this project in in 1 weeks time! yikes, and I just found this site. P.S. I am a girl, so keep the answers low level tech!! :)?

2 Replies

lemonie (author)2009-06-22

Hi, don't worry about the PCB, it's main function is to control the lights, which you don't need it to do. Make sure the solar panel produces more voltage than the rechargeable battery, and make sure you wire the LEDs in the right way (LED series/parallel array wizard).
See also: https://www.instructables.com/tag/?sort=none&limit%3Atype%3Aid=on&q=solar+battery+charger


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frollard (author)2009-06-22

solar lights are gonna output at most 2-3 volts Strings of fairy lights require household current - and because you called them 'fairy' lights I assume you in UK - so probably 220 volts. There is no reasonable way to make a solar light run more than 2 or 3 leds for any appreciable amount of time. There are strings of LEDS that use a much larger (say 2-10 watt) solar panel to charge a sla battery during the day and run a small string at night. Again, one, or even a few solar garden lights won't cut it.

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