6 Volt Lantern Battery to D Cell Mod!

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This instructable will show you how you can still use your 6 volt lantern when you only have D cell batteries.  A single D cell battery is 1.5 volts so 4 of them is 6 volts.  You will need an old 6 volt lantern battery,  4 D batteries,  and some materials to make a spacers.  (I used a water bottle,  some cardboard,  and some metal clothing snaps).

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Step 1:

Start by gently prying open the top of the battery case,  being carefull not to damage or tear the metal.

Step 2:

Carefully pry up the cover with the springs, and you will find 4 "oversized D Batteries" in series to add up to 6 volts.  There is a piece of cardboard with metal strips at the bottom to bridge the positive of one battery to the negative of the other, and a strip on the top to connect the positive of one bridged set to the negative of the other.  There is also a metal spacer that is pictured in step 3.
As you can see,  a D battery is shorter (by 1 1/8 inch).

Step 3:

I used the bottom of a water bottle with some cardboard on top of it as a spacer. I then reinstalled the metal spacer and the cardboard with the strips of metal.
Because the negative side of the d batteries in indented,  it did not make contact with the metal strips so I had to make spacers out of the metal button snaps I had laying around.  I used dielectric grease to hold them in place.   Other things can work if you don't have snaps.  (If you got this far, I have faith in you)
Next you install the batteries alternating Pos, Neg, Pos, Neg,  so that you end up with 2 sets of batteries bridged at the bottom.

Step 4:

Now, install the top cap.  It is very important that the bridge bar on the cap is perpendicular to the strips at the bottom,  so that you connect the 2 "bridged sets" together, Positive to negative.  Test with a meter shows just over 6 volts.

Step 5:

It may take a bit of tweeking with spacers,  and making sure everthing contacts,  But once you get it,  your good to go.  You can swap them out over and over again.

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5 Discussions

this is a cool idea. its especially good in these days of super storms and the darn lantern goes out.

2 replies

That's exactly when I first thought of it. When the power was out and the lantern went dim, dimmer, dead!

Clever idea.

Should not the title be "D cell to 6 Volt battery Mod"?