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emergency led or strobe lights Answered

does any one have a way to construct a L.E.D flashing warning light or maybe strobe light for emergency uses? I am a paramedic in a rural area and some times have to use my own vehicle to respond. Warning device needs to be relatively compact and low power draw. i just want to put red led's in my grill and maybe strobes in my head and tail lights. they make the high watt strobes(50w-80w) with the hide away grommets but they are expensive and the power supplies aint cheap. is there a reason i cant take apart a regular home strobe and wire it into a poxer inverter? thanks for any info steve

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12amedle (author)2012-02-16

i dont have any diagrams but radio shake has just about any part needed to make it work

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HamO (author)2007-09-06

check out hamsexy.com for many examples of this type of installation.

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Patrick Pending (author)2007-09-06

Use hazard warning lights. You can also buy cheap amber accident warning lights at any automotive store. I am fairly sure(certainly here in the UK) that anything else would be illegal unless it was approved for use by emergency services and you and your vehicle were also approved. You either need it and your employer should pay for proper approved lights or you don't and they won't. Cheers, Pat. Pending

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> cheap amber accident warning lights . I think Mr. Pending has the right idea. Even though the local authorities might know you and look the other way, I'll bet red flashing lights on the front of your vehicle are illegal and if you run into a state trooper things might get ugly. . > You either need it and your employer should pay for proper approved lights or you don't and they won't. . I think he hit the nail on the head. I applaud your volunteer work, but see nothing but trouble from putting "official" lighting on your personal vehicle. I'd stick with amber hazard flashers/strobes (or any other color that is legal for private vehicles). I'm having a hard time understanding why your boss would even allow you to make runs (paid or unpaid) without providing the proper equipment. Please don't tell me they expect you to buy your own latex gloves, too.

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CameronSS (author)2007-09-05

Here's a related forum topic. Not too much information about how you could construct a strobe, but yes, LEDs can flash that fast.

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NachoMahma (author)CameronSS2007-09-05

. heehee. I forgot all about LEDs being used at multi-MHz speeds for fiber-optics. Not sure why I was thinking they were slow - I'll plead old age. ;) Thanks for settin' me straight.

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gmoon (author)NachoMahma2007-09-06

Yeah, LEDs will pulse pretty fast. Not only that, you can pump much more current through 'em since it's applied in a transient pulse--much brighter. Just picking a LED spec sheet at random (normal forward current 20mA):

Pulse current (1/10 duty cycle)....100mA

(probably a short pulse, but somewhere there is a happy middle ground between pulse length and brightness. And no reason why a single 'flash couldn't consist of several short pulses..)

You could, of course, use a 'party' type strobe unit--photoflash type. I searched for 'strobe light kit' and several came up. Here's a Link to one kit.

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NachoMahma (author)2007-09-05

. I would think that your employer would be required to provide you with the safety equipment needed to do your job. . I don't believe a LED will "strobe" - I think the rise/decay times are too long. Good chance I'm wrong, since the best def of strobe I can come up with is it will do stop-motion. ;) . For your purposes (making yourself noticable to motorists), an array of flashing LEDs should work. Be careful, if mounting behind the grille, that you don't block too much air flow to the radiator. For the rear, I'd try an array that will fit in the rear window and remove it when not needed. . A lot of strobes (think camera flash) use 3-12VDC, no inverter needed, just a cheap voltage regulator. . Most states have very strict rules about using strobes and flashing lights on motor vehicles. As an EMT, it should be easy for you to get a permit/license/whatever to allow you to use them, but you really need to check it out. . Good luck!

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cruisermedic (author)NachoMahma2007-09-05

my job does not "require" me to use my vehicle......i live in a very rural area where some times only 1 ambulance is in a 100 square mile radius. so if there is a emergency near my location i can perform care from my vehicle till ambulance arrives.....this is purely voluntary. as far as permits go...as long as my department authorises me its ok. do you happen to be able to come up with a part number for bright leds and any resistors or whatever i would need to accomplish this. i can come up with a housing for them to fit in. thanks

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NachoMahma (author)cruisermedic2007-09-05

. I haven't kept up with electronics for many years, but there are several ppl on here that will probably chime in and help you out with the details.

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