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Old 04-15-2004, 11:12 PM   #41
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wal mart (back in the car section) home improvement stores like hd, and radio shack are good places. if you are looking for something online digikey.com is the largest distruber of eletrical stuff i believe they have switches too, but don't quote me. you could get a small switch, like ones you see on little kids toys, for a buck. they very small (like 1inch long) and they are easly overlooked.

i have blu leds @ 4000mcd with a 30degree angle. you can always use creative light diffusing systems to fix the small lighting angle. home depot sells these panes of plastics (i think i mentioned them before in this topic) that work the best, in my opinion. i will check some places online and drop a response if i found any pretty switches.
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Old 04-15-2004, 11:40 PM   #42
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I still like the "wire mold" idea. I spent alot of time "building" my "bar". I like the idea of being able to change it if I want.
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Old 04-16-2004, 03:01 AM   #43
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"wire mold idea" ? what is "that" ?

are you "talking" about led holders by chance? if you're not fimilar.. they are small peice of plastic (like 1/4 inche) that has 2 wires sticking out of 1 end, and metal contacts on the other, the led slides down and makes contact. you see them often in "computers" these things can also be used in mounting switches, and various things to mobo's.
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Old 04-16-2004, 03:59 AM   #44
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1 resistor per LED you are correct...
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Old 04-16-2004, 07:19 AM   #45
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Quote:
"wire mold idea" ? what is "that" ?

are you "talking" about led holders by chance
Nah, I talking about the stuff you can use to run wire down the wall when you can't get inside o fthe wall. It uses sticky tape to adhere to the wall.
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Old 04-17-2004, 01:35 AM   #46
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ah! i gotcha now. sorry for the confusion.. and the Quotation mark usage.. just having a little to much fun over here.
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Old 04-17-2004, 03:17 AM   #47
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Ok, Got my LED's 2 blue and 2 white, just to see the differance, I so like the white better then the blue... Also. They are too bright IMHO. I have the power turns all the way down AND put in the 150phm resistors and they light up the tanks pretty well... Any ideas how to turn em down a notch?
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Old 04-17-2004, 04:51 AM   #48
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Jprox, would adding a POT to the circuit allow for dimming of the LED?
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Old 04-18-2004, 02:05 AM   #49
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well.. offically no, however and without getting technical.. a 50k pot (and/or have a wattage of 1/2 watt and higher) will operate in the capacity of a dimmer switch, so yes it will work as a dimmer, it's not a 'true' dimmer though.


if anyone cares about why it's not a true dimmer... (and it's technical - lite!)
led's go into saturation when voltage reaches a cetain point (when they get 3.7v they turn on in other words) at 3.6v they should turn off, or drop out of saturation, and go into cutoff. however a pot will take a bit of the voltage from the leds, something in the few mille volt range to a full couple of volts, enough to trick the led to turn on, but only so slightly. a true dimmer would be to build a circuit perferably using a common 555timer, with an adjustable duty cycle, to actually control the led's output, in the mini seconds (similar to how to a tv reception works, where the incoming signal is actually compressed of a bunch of still images ran at ~60hz enough to trick our human eyes into thinking it's a moving image when it's actually a bunch of still pictures. interesting point: a common house fly can't watch tv, 60hz to slow to trick their eyes, they actually see all the seperate still images.. which is when you can never swat one without a fly swatter) in any case, using a 555timer is, imo overkill.. just use the pot you'll be pretty happy with the results, it most likely will not be a smooth transition from max to lo (let's say you start at 100% turn the pot 1/4 of a turn and the led's dim to 50% of their output, turn the pot 1/4 again they might jump to 10%) so their adjusted output will be non-linear. but with a steady hand and some patience you will overcome that down fall.

pots are fairly uniform, however their terminals can move around depending on manufactor and application, this pot is from radioshack, and it's a 50k linear pot (1/2watt rating)
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Originally Posted by JProx
http://12598.tripod.com/Pot.jpg
you will want connect terminal's A and C. if you connect anything else you will not have a variable output, it will be deadlocked at max resistance value of the pot, which happens to be 50k in this example.
if you hook up A and B = deadlock, B and C = deadlock
you keep asking questions, and i will keep knocking 'em out!
sorry about the late response, i was doing some furniture construction, and was out in the garage till.. just about now.
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Old 04-18-2004, 08:30 PM   #50
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thanks, I wasn't sure how a true dimmer worked. I was just thinking of a simple way to reduce current to the LED. I'vd never taken any electronics course and I don't know jack about this stuff. I'm glad your here to help out.

so, would using a pot be a bad idea? would under powering the LED reduce life expectancy or damage the LED and reducing performance?

The only reason I want to add a pot is because the LED's I orderd might be too powerful and I'd like to "tune" the light in right so the creatures who come out at night to play, don't get scared by the intensity.

thanks in advance.

MR
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