Halogen Work Light Projector Mod V2.0

Out Dated Mod:

The projector mods I did are out dated at this time. There are projectors with much better optics, brightness and throw distances. If you looking for a long use projector, with inexpensive bulbs, like I was when doing this mod, I would suggest getting an LED based projector. They provide superior brightness, rich colors, and most of all ridiculous long life spans over using a bulb based projector. Most of all there very inexpensive. Seriously Check out Amazon for LED Projectors. Just remember to find the Native Resolution, Brightness, Inputs and check the user reviews before making your purchase.

Considering what you can get NEW and at a reasonable price, modding is just not worth it.

A Home Theater that won't brake the bank.

Simply use a burnt out projector and a Work Light from Home Depot and bring the theater home!

The OEM replacement bulb for my projector cost $300 (!) , more than what I paid for the projector it self. Also, my power supply that powered the original bulb was almost toast. Using this guide, you can use a Halogen Work Light bulb for about $10 dollars.

If you like this mod please Digg It!

This project is a redo of my Automotive Head Light Projector Mod

WARNING: This mod involves modification of a projector, electrical wires, switches and a high power bulb. If you are not comfortable with modding on this level, DO NOT attempt this mod. The writer is not responsible for any injuries or damages resulting from these instructions.

Step 1: Obtaining the Work Light

'Step 1: Go to HOME DEPOT'
In their Electrical Section you will find a small ~$10 250 Watt Halogen Work Light
Make sure that the bulb is 3.15 inches NOT a 4.69 inch or it may not fit.
You will want to measure the space that you have in your projector before going to the store.

You can get 3.15 inch bulbs that go from 75 to 400 watts in 3.15 inch. However, remember that even though more watts means more lumens, it also means more heat.
(We don't want to melt the projector or start a fire)

Once you have found the bulb that will fit your projector, Buy it and continue to step 2. ------->

Step 2: Taking Things Apart : )

Now that we have the work light take it apart!
The nice thing about the work light is that it contains all the things we need to build this mod. A halogen bulb, a bulb socket, switch, and a power cord. The only thing you need are tools (a screwdriver, pliers, drill & bits) and wire nuts.

Disassembly is easy, as the light comes only partially assembled.
All screws used a Phillips driver, and to remove the clear wire nut crimps just pinch them on the sides with some pliers.

There are four parts we will need. The Halogen Bulb, the Bulb socket, switch, and power cord.

Put the light casing back in the box for your next project.

Step 3: Mounting the Switch

Drill a hole in your projector where you have room for the switch, wire and nuts underneath.
On my projector about 2 inches from the bulb socket worked well.

Unscrew the red switch and mount it in the casing. (See picture)

Step 4: Add POWER!

Drill another hole for the power cord. Push the power cord through the hole and secure it with a zip tie.

Step 5: Wire the Switch and the Bulb Socket.

Wire the switch, power cord and bulb socket. You should know that in building wiring Black = Hot, White = Neutral, and Green = Ground.

Wire the switch through the hot wire, and the bulb socket white to white and black to the switch. You can ground the Green to the ground on your projector.

If you don't know electrical wiring I suggest getting a friend to help with this project.

Step 6: Insert the Bulb and Reassemble the Projector.

Place the bulb in the bulb socket and place it directly where your original bulb would be or your automotive head light was if you completed my previous mod.

Step 7: It's SHOWTIME!

After checking all your electrical connections, Fire up your projector. Make any adjustments to the bulb placement if needed after the bulb has cooled. I can get a massive 12 Foot screen using this mod. Its much brighter than the automotive light I used last time.

Invite your friends over to the movies and show them the projector you modded.
Pop popcorn and through in one of your favorite movies.

Please check out my other projects:

Automotive Head Light Projector Mod
Upgrade from VISTA to XP

CAUTION : This Halogen bulb is MUCH HOTTER that the automotive headlight that was used last time.
You will need a significant amount of air flow through the bulb chamber to cool the bulb and NOT START A FIRE! Also, keep the bulbs power cord unplugged, you don't want someone turning on the bulb with out the fan. I am not held responsible for damages due to improper use of your projector.

My next project how to make perfect popcorn!
This popcorn popper makes great popcorn. Legend has it it was discovered abandoned in a work camp on the Alaskan pipeline.



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    57 Discussions


    9 years ago on Step 7

    Not to hard to figure out all he did was to replace the standard bulb with a halogen lamp, thats already wired, then he drills a hole in the side of the projector casing instead of trying to wire it up direct to the projector power supply. Then he actually has two seperate switches one for the light and one for the projector. The thing to note is the fact that he cautioned the need to have extra cooling such as a larger fan. Its really all simple reverse engineering and running the existing wires from the halogen light to the original wire as in piggy backed lol. As far as the projector cooling time it should still be automatic he didnt change the circuit all he did was add a stronger light. To be positive on this the bulb doesnt cost an arm and a leg to get and all the wire and circuit you need are already there. BE NICE he did explain you would need to find one that will fit your projector.

    1 reply

    Reply 7 years ago on Step 7

    most projectors have an auto-shutoff if there is no current running through the bulb. This would have to be bypassed to make it work somehow. There is more to it than just powering the projector and bulb separately. As nearly every other post here points out....


    8 years ago on Step 7

    hi,  I am geared up and ready to do this instructable, I am quite exited and cant wait to pop some corn and have a movie night,  I am having a problem though that maybe you can help me with.

    I am using an acer pd100 projector, but it does not power up unless there is a working bulb in it, now I have to trick it into thinking that there is a bulb in by using a resistor but i have no clue wich one to use.

    I have looked up the bulb  but cant seem to find how much power it uses,  that is if its 12 volt or 220 (I am in europe) 

    the bulb:

    any ideas as to what strength resistor I should use?

    2 replies

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    try, tricking it in the sensor circuit, not the actual power circuit for the lamp.
    I first removed the HV flyback trafo, and tried that way on my new benq :)
    It did not work, and i had the same problem as you do, then I looked at the circuit and saw that there was only the power wires and the sensor wires(the lamp HV pcb is seperate from the rest. the sensor circuit wires had only 1,2 v dc, so i tried to conect them directly guessing that the lamp circuit works as a switch and it works . now i just need to put a stronger bulb in,this one is only 60w and maybe it wil pass in complete darknes. cheers

    Hello, I was thinking about doing a project like this. I wanted to know if you have ever tried to use a high power LED instead of a halogen light? If I were to attempt this I would most likely use one that is colored bright white: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=320590927002&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT
    depending on how many lumens the projector is, I will find one that matches that. Please tell me if you think this will work and feel free to add any suggestions.


    8 years ago on Introduction

    Hi, later this summer I'm planning to mod a LCD projector which has no lamp. I come across this producer: http://www.hueyjann.com.tw/self_pages/en/application.html It offers high power LEDs (up to 100W), with an high CRI of 90. I'm now asking them where I can find a sample of their HPR40E-19K100NWG/CRI 90. The PSUs are easy to find on the eBay (search "100W led ac driver"). As a collimator I plan to use some short focal length fresnel lenses, which you can find for example here http://www.knightoptical.co.uk/acatalog/LensesFresnellensesStandardrange.htm If you couple two or more lenses you'll have an equivalent focal length f/n, where n is the number of lenses you used. So you can have a rather thin, but powerful, lens. Maybe you'll need a tempered glass as those lenses are made of plastics, and too much heat would melt them. The biggest problem is the heat: you have to dissipate a large amount of power, so it will be impossible to fit this setup in a lamp housing, you will need at least a heatsink coming out of the projector, maybe also a fan and/or a peltier cell. But you'll have a great light source: a LED with 90 CRI and 5800lumens. What do you think? [it would be a little pricey though...]


    9 years ago on Step 6

    Viper help! I am at this stage now. but the ceramic holders of my halogen lamp are hitting the cone mirror on the heat shield. Let me guess your ceramic holders just happen to be low profile and you never had this problem.

    1 reply

    Reply 9 years ago on Step 6

    Yes, I thought that the ceramic holders on mine were a standard size. you may have to modify how the cone mirror or reflector is mounted in order to fit everything in.

    Im verry impressed that you have taken on the project keep going your almost there!



    9 years ago on Introduction

    i have an optoma ezpro 585 and it seems to be the exact same projector as yours in every way except name . my bulb has maybe another 30 hours on it and i am gearing up to try this mod, i just had a quick question, how did you mount the bulb in the old bulb's place. i am guessing a few squirts from a hot glue gun wont work lol....

    2 replies

    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    I used thin steel wire with no insulation. It worked well. Just make sure it doesn't touch any electrical wires.


    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    i will try the thin wire if all else fails, i was thinking of using some jb weld to 'weld' the lamp holder in place. i used it on my car engine and its held pretty well and it gets really hot so im sure it would work here. Also i found the same light you got but mine came with a foot long power cable and no switch. i was able find a switch that will work and im adding a longer cord but the thing that worries me is there is a thin piece of glass in front of the bulb that has " uv filter - do not remove" on it. DId yours have this and if so have you had any problems running the projector with out it? i really dont want to get a tan while watching a movie ....


    9 years ago on Step 3

    hi there i am stuck at this stage. i really want to do this project but i am just stuck at this one stage. you see i have an acer PD113. please can you search this projector and tell me where i will have to drill these holes. the bulb is at the bottom but i cant seem to remove the shell. thank you hantly

    1 reply

    Reply 9 years ago on Step 3

    It may still be possible but youll most likely have to find a way to fit the components in. I cant tell you where to mount equipment on every projector I would have to have the projector in front of me in order to help you.  


    9 years ago on Introduction

    Hello Viper it has been two years since you made this mod. I don;t know if you are still there or even reading this. But would like to know the following.

    - Is your halogen projector mod still going?
    - did you modify the fan in the MVP800 to work on all the time or did you just leave as is?
    - did you disconnect the original wires for the light of the projector or did you just take the mounting off?
    - does it produce excess heat? how did you manage to solve this problem?


    1 reply

    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    Yes I'm still here!  :D
    And I'm working on a website dedicated to my projects and the projector mod that stirred up so much excitement. Check back here for a link when the site is ready for public consumption. I will be adding lots of my projects to the site as well as a new detailed look at the projector mod.

    Yes the old girl is still going! We have watched many movies on the weekends with it.

    The fan always runs when the projector is in standby and should run twice as fast when it is turned on. So you should turn the bulb on after the projector fan is moving. The fan already runs at a good speed and the bulb is about as hot as the original bulb so no modification was necessary.  I removed the original wires and the mounting from the projector as the igniter wasn't working. 

    For people wanting EXACT step by step instructions. This is a prof of concept and explanation of how I did the mod on MY projector every projector is going to be different unless you can get a hold of the same or a similar model.  Many of my ideas for other projects come from a brief explanation of how something works or a picture of a similar project. It is up to you to look and think about your idea and solve the problems to make it function. I built the projector mods in about 5 or 6 hours and had to think up almost everything on my own.

    If you put you mind to it you can accomplish anything. -Dr. Emit Brown


    10 years ago on Introduction

    This is probably a bad idea. I would stick with the Car Headlight bulbs. Those Halogen bulbs are in that yellow case for a reason. The glass on the front of that is made to block out harmful rays that come from the Halogen Bulb. More specifically. The UV rays from the light. These are extremely harmful rays. That can give you sunburn, which can accelerate skin cancer. Like I said this isn't a good idea.

    3 replies

    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    Hate to burst your bubble xeniczone, there is an absolutely misicule risk of skin damage because of these halogen lamps. Although it is true that exposure to UV light can accelerate skin cancer and cause damage, due to the tiny amount of UV light emitted by these, only very prolonged exposure to them can cause skin damage. And to add to this most commonly avaliable halogen bulbs, such as the linear sort used in work lights etc, have a UV filter coating on the lamp itself. I know this will seem like I'm having a bit of a pop at you, but its more to clear up any misconceptions people might have about this. Great Instructable by the way VIPER2475, keep up the good work.


    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    Seriously I have not experienced any sun burn, tanning or other ill effects with this bulb. It would be easy to use the glass included as a filter. So far I have to agree with pcfixit. And yes these are the same type used in lamps and they have a tiny filter over them. I think its mostly there to reduce the risk of fires.