This light came about because my house mate wanted a way to turn some lights on down stairs when she was upstairs. I considered all the smart bulb options and having an electrician change the wiring so that a switch could be installed but in the end decided that the simplest way is normally the best way and often the cheapest. As I work night and often head up to bed just an hour or 2 before she gets up the simplest thing to do is leave a light on. I looked for some super low power LED bulbs but the lowest I could find was 1.7 watts. I also considered a plug in night light but a lack of sockets didn't make it a good option.
And so the battery powered light came to be. I wanted a simple design that wouldn't look out of place during the day, would be bright enough to light the way down the stairs to the main light switch and a really simple way of operating it.
The light is 2 LEDs running off a 9v battery, its housed in 1 piece of wood and uses a piece of 3mm opal frosted acrylic to defuse the light.
This light uses:
- 1x 9V battery
- 2x 3mm warm white LEDs,
- 1 x 200Ω resistor
- 1x switch
- 1x 9v battery connector.
- a little bit of wire and some heat shrink tubing.
- 1 piece of wood
Step 1: Cutting the Shape and WoodWork
I used my computer to print off a heart shape that I cut out and stuck onto the acrylic with double sided tape. I then used a jigsaw to cut the shape into the acrylic and finished it with sand paper.
The wooden block is a part of an old pallet that has been used for a few projects. Its been sanded flat and smooth mostly with the help of a belt sander. I traced out the acrylic heart onto the wood and used a small bit in a router make the right shaped hole 3mm deep, then routed down another 5mm or so leaving a ledge for the acrylic to sit on.
Turning the block over I routed out a hole for the switch and deep recess for the battery then drilled 2 holes from the other side for the LEDs
Step 2: Soldering
As the heart shape in the front isn't as deep I used the holes there to get the LEDs connected the correct distance apart and soldered the anode of one LEDs to the cathode of the other.
I soldered some wire onto the switch and then one of the wires from the switch to the remaining anode with some heat shrink tubing, The 200Ω resistor is soldered onto the cathode and the negative of the battery connector onto the resistor. The positive from the battery connects onto the other side of the switch to complete the circuit.
I love my hot glue gun and for projects like this its just perfect for holding everything in place.
The last job is to removing the protecting film from the acrylic and push it home with just a little hot glue to keep it in place.
Step 3: Other Thoughts
I used a 9v battery as I had one and the relevant connector. It would be just as easy to use a 2x AA batteries with either a single LED or 2 in parallel. It would also be possible to make this USB powered.