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Just ordered all the parts I will need to create my LED light project. This project will cover a area 6 x 8 if it is desired and will cost $760 in parts and run off a total of about 80watts. Based on my math this will pay for itself in a few years time based on energy savings alone over using HID lights.

There is a lengthy post in the Indoor lighting group with the reason behind why I chose this design over others. This is NOT made to be the only source of light but work in conjunction with HID lights which are cycled on for up to 1 hour every 3 hours.

Since my project is 100% indoors and there is no great source of light in the location I am using this seems to be the best option. I have had a lot of experience wiring high voltage laboratory equipment with many more components and complexities than what I will be presented with in this project so I have confidence I will be able to see it through.


I plan using a heat gun or a well controlled oven to construct the "light bars" in such a way they are molded to fit the application, more on this later when I work out the details.


Here is the parts list with total cost analysis


Basic Circuit construction, the LED array on this is NOT up to date as I am not going the route of making my own PCB's for a clearer image as it is BIG :)


This is ONE array of 5 in each light strip, there will be 8 light strips total with two power supplies for a group of 4 respectively.


This is to scale drawing of the new array layout using the 213 pin boards in the price list. The dark colored items are the resistor locations for each "string" in the LED array.
Wire guide with each array indicated, the red dots are the + side of the LEDs. This design was chosen based on the new constraints of the 213 pin PCB and a desire to get the colors as close to the original array above.

Color guide below, currently uses same LED's in the arrays indicated on the circuit diagram just rearranged. I will most likely design this a couple of times before I am happy with it but this is where I am at currently. Colors used come off the diagrams above.

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Comment by Jesse Hull on September 28, 2011 at 9:31pm


Not a big fan of the current level LED technology myself, but this sounds like a fascinating project, and I look forward to seeing what comes of this.  I have had greater success with LED's combined with other sources of light, although even T5's create too much heat when placed as close as most LED lights need to in order to be truly efficient (lack of canopy penetration).  

You said above that you're combining LED's with HID lights.  Perhaps I missed something, but how do you plan to keep the LED's close enough without blocking the HID's?

Last thing to consider is that cycling your HID's on/off as you described will dramatically decrease the life of your bulbs and ballasts.


Hope you don't take my critiques the wrong way, I am certainly impressed by your technical abilities and knack for innovation in creating this project.  



Comment by Burton on April 4, 2011 at 2:01pm

Ordered one set of LED's with wrong nm so have to see about returning them and hope its not for "credit" as I would have to wait for the return in order to place the order for the right ones.

The LED's dont sit flush in the PCB board without also clipping the anode side of the "bumper" ... I have found / remembered an easier way to do this though it will add time to the project it's not a major setback.

I will update a post when I expect the new LED's to come in as soon as I know.

I am only going to blog about this project here since I am not really selling anything :) While I have my own graphic design / web design / web development company little would be gained by redirecting people to such a resource page just for a blog :D

Comment by Rik Kretzinger on April 3, 2011 at 11:24am
Burton --  This good stuff.  I am very interested in your progress as work like this will make it possible for others (like me) start to get more for the dollars spent in LED technology.  Keep posting of if you have a BLOG that you are doing regarding this project I would like to follow along and build my own once you work out the details.
Comment by Burton on April 2, 2011 at 6:40pm
All parts due in by the 7th, when they all arrive I will take pictures of them and throw them into a photo album and probably post them on the blog before I start to assemble :)

So far I have the PCB and the DC power jacks in only right now, expecting LED's M / R and the DC power supplies W :D

This is going to be so cool!
Comment by Burton on April 1, 2011 at 11:45am
Oh I plan on it :) Waiting for the supplies to arrive in the mail, which some are not expected till the 11th sadly ...
Comment by Chris & Laura Coulson on April 1, 2011 at 11:36am
very interesting ... i'd love to do the same.  Please document and take images along the way.
Comment by Burton on March 31, 2011 at 10:11pm

Updated the LED array and wiring so it is more balanced ... I probably could have left it the way it was given its only about 2" x 2" but I wanted to space the colors out more even, thus requiring me to update the diagram.

Thankfully I didn't have to update the wiring as I already purchased parts -_-

Here is a preview ... I will include it in my next blog post as well when I start the assembly process ... Kinda odd to be building lights when I don't even have my tank cycling yet. LOL


Comment by Sylvia Bernstein on March 29, 2011 at 6:55pm
Wow, incredible.  thanks for sharing this, Burton!

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