Introduction: 8w DIY LED Herb Garden
Over-wintering herbs can be tough without adequate lighting. This is a simple and efficient solution that can be placed almost anywhere such as on the kitchen counter or in a shelving unit. I suggest you take time to research and study basic electronic circuitry and the safe operation and handling of high powered LED modules.
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Step 1: Heat Sink Construction
For the heat sink i chose 1-1/2"×1/8" aluminum and cut 2 pieces at 8". After clamping the two pieces together eight holes were drilled using a 5/32" drill bit with the two center holes to be used for mounting the LED. Using fine grit emery cloth the pieces were then polished to a smooth buffed finish. 8-32×1/2 machine screws were used to clamp the two pieces with nuts and washers securing it and as well as the two hanging brackets.
Step 2: Driver Preparation
The driver you choose will depend entirely on the LED(s) chosen for the luminaire. In this case a single Bridgelux Vero 10 4000k 80cri COB will be powered by a generic 6-10 watt 300mA driver. .25 insulated crimp-on terminals were used on both the AC side as well as to connect a pre-fab 12" Molex Pico-EZmate harness(not pictured) made to fit the Veros on-board connection port.
Step 3: LED Placement
Apply an adequate amount of thermal paste to the aluminum pad on the back of the module. Gently push down while being careful not to touch the yellow phosphor lens. Screw down gently alternating between screws as they tighten up.
Step 4: Final Setup
After securing and double checking all connections its time to plug it in. A simple polarized 16/2 extension cord with .25 crimp-on terminals and an inline switch will be used in this example. Take care not to look directly at the emitter when powered on. Place over a pot of your favorite herbs and enjoy them all the winter.
Step 5: 48" Veggie Light
Here is a 9"×48" fixture using the same Vero 10 4000k powered by a 40w 320mA driver. It is very light weight and generates very little heat.