Intro: LED Cycle Light Review
I was recently sent a neat little LED light kit to review. The kit is from ICstation (part number 1760). The name of this kit is "LED Cycle Lamp/LED Flashlight". However I believe it would be more appropriately named something like "Love goes around" or "Circle my heart".
The circuit board, in the shape of a heart, has eighteen (18) LEDs around the outer edge of the board running in a pattern which creates a nice chase effect around the board.
I was surprised to find there were no instructions included and I could not locate any to download. Although the circuit board is well marked there are still three resistors (R2, R4 & R6) that are not labeled. After a little digging I was able to locate and identify the correct location for these resistors.
I would, with the correct instructions included, rate this kit as good for beginners. Besides the three resistors above, the kit consists of an additional three (3) 10k resistors (R1, R3, R5), three (3) 22uf capacitors, three (3) 9014 transistors, and eighteen (18) LEDs (6 red, 6 green, 6 yellow). The circuit board is well marked for the location and correct orientation of all of these.
Step 1: Putting It Together
I've rated this as good for beginners. Let me add that it is good for beginners with decent soldering skills. The solder pads on this board are fairly close together, using to much solder will create shorts between components. Keep your soldering iron tip clean (use a wet sponge to wipe the hot iron on) and use the smallest diameter solder you have. I wouldn't want to be using anything larger than .032 diameter solder myself and that's pushing it. The smaller the better in this case.
1. Install the resistors
R1: 10k (brown, black, orange)
R2: 550R (green, green, brown)
R4: 220R (red, red, brown)
R6: 47R (yellow, purple, black)
2. Install the capacitors
C1, C2 & C3
All the capacitors are the same (22uF) so which one goes where is not a concern. Do however pay attention to the correct polarity (positive and negative) which is marked on the board. As with LEDs, the longer lead on a capacitor is positive. Capacitors are also marked with a vertical color band on the label which corresponds to the NEGATIVE lead. (see picture above)
3. Install the transistors
Q1, Q2 & Q3
All the transistors are the same (9014) so which one goes where is not a concern again. Place them according to the graphic on the board.
4. Install the LEDs (see explanation of circuit board pattern (Step 2 "Specifications") prior to installing the LEDs)
Pay attention to polarity (positive and negative). The graphic etched on the board for the LED locations has a flat spot, that's the negative side and will correspond with the flat spot on the bottom rim of the LED. (see picture above)
5. Install the Battery Pack
Insert the battery pack positive (red wire) and negative (black wire) leads from the BACK of the board through the two holes provided in front of the actual power contacts. Then insert those leads in the correct contact hole and solder on the back (see picture above)..
You are finished, install a couple AA batteries in the battery pack and watch the LEDs chase each other around your heart.
Step 2: Specifications
Board Dimensions: 48MM x 51MM (approximately 2" x 2")
Power Supply: 3v - 5v (the included battery holder is for two (2) AA batteries which provides 3V)
LEDs: eighteen (18) total - 6 red, 6 yellow, 6 green)
Circuit Board Pattern:
The eighteen LEDs are broken down into three groups with six LEDs in each group. The pattern is created by turning on and off each group in a sequential order.
The LED groups are;
1. D1 - D6
2. D7 - D12
3. D13 - D18
HOWEVER - D1 through D18 areNOT sequentially numbered around the circuit board. For example, starting with D1 and moving clockwise, where is D2? D2 is three LEDs away from D1. Why? Because D1 and D2 are in the first group of LEDs, there is one LED from group 2 and one LED from group 3 in-between D1 and D2 (see picture above).
You can place the LEDs in any order you prefer. The chase pattern looks best though when each group of LEDs are all the same color. I installed mine alternating red, green and yellow.
Thank you, and as always please do not be shy about letting me know about any errors you may have noted. I'd much rather hear about my mistakes than leave them uncorrected.