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how do I give an LED a wider beam spread? Answered

I would like to position a 5mm LED approx 3mm - 5mm behind a clear surface with a stencil in front of it. at the moment the LED projects a spot about 5 - 8mm in diameter, I'd like to make that around 20mm without changing the LED's position.
 I can replace the LED's, so if experimentation of the focal lens is required thats OK, but every time I've tried I'm made something with a dark area in the middle ;-)

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Re-design
Re-design

11 years ago

Scratch a clear piece of plastic with fine sand paper and put that over the led as a diffuser.  Then make a cone of alum. foil, shiny side in, so that all the led light gets projected back to your stencil.  Diffusing the led will cause some light to be lost.

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frollard
frollard

11 years ago

Cover the tip of the led with a spherical blob of hot glue.  Tada - scattered beam :D

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Jayefuu
Jayefuu

11 years ago

Cutting the end of the LED off so it is flat instead of rounded often gives a good effect. Saw it off with a hacksaw then file it down with some medium sandpaper then fine sand paper.

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lemonie
lemonie

11 years ago

You could find a LED with a wider angle, or use more. But another option would be to diffuse the light by roughening-up the plastic case with coarse sandpaper.

L

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Koosie
Koosie

11 years ago

See if you can get a cheap, generic pair of reading glasses. They're usually available at pharmacies. Try one of the lenses in front of the LED, maybe that will do the trick.