Introduction: Compact LED Light Table

About: I am an inventive photographer, Pilot, and MacGyver. I love building and modifying things to aid in my adventures. Check out my Website! Have a great day!

I built a compact tracing table (only 2-1/8" thick) to aid in amending plans and sketches. I used RGB LED rope lighting, this allows the tracing table to double as a flood lighting panel and create any one of over a million colours.

This can be used as a:

Video Light

Photography Light

Party Light

Flood Light

Tracing Table

The full build video is embedded below.

For this instructable you will require:

5 meters of 5050 RGB rope lighting (

1 5050 LED controller (

1 Nielsen style picture frame (with glass)

4 Battery Post Bolts (with nuts)

4 Tire Valve Stem Caps (

Mechanics or Binding Wire

1 12v Power Source or 12v Cable and a Battery pack (

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Step 1: Remove the Glass

Remove the spacers which hold the glass in place using a flat screw driver.

Then unscrew the corners of one side of the picture frame and remove the glass.

Step 2: Layout

Trace out the inside diameter of the picture frame onto a piece of cardboard and determine the best layout for the LED's.

I used a linear propagation and cornered at the edges to avoid soldering.

Step 3: Backing

Cut your backing material down to length and width.

Then mark out the locations for the mechanics wire to secure the rope lighting.

Next, drill out these holes and use a plunge router to router a groove along these holes on the back of the picture frame. This groove will prevent the mechanics wire from snagging.

Step 4: Attach the Frame

Drill four holes in the edge of the backing material for the battery bolts, then secure the picture frame to the backing material.

Step 5: Attach the LED's

Peel the adhesive backing off of the LED's one section at a time. Then secure the ends of the row with mechanics wire, loosely twisting the wire together with your fingers as you go.

Once you have finished the whole board, flip it over and tightly twist the wires together before trimming off any excess and bending them over into the groove.

Step 6: Reassemble

Remove the picture frame from the backing material and reinsert the glass. Attach the control box before reinstalling the picture frame. Place the valve stem caps onto the exposed ends of the bolts to prevent damaging tables the tracing table is place on.

Step 7: Add the Control Box

Drill pilot holes into the back of the tracing table and screw down the control box.

Step 8: Battery Pack

After cutting the end off of an appropriate cable, use a continuity tester to determine which wire is the cold or negative wire (outside casing of plug).

Strip both the wire and battery pack wires before twisting, soldering, and heat shrinking the cable together.

Step 9: Start Tracing

Start tracing.

If you have any questions or suggestions for improvement feel free to comment below or private message me.
Have a great day!

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Rainbow Contest 2016