Group Buy of LEDs to replace incandescent bulbs - Page 3 - Fiberglass RV

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Old 02-07-2011, 03:27 PM   #29
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Name: Matt
Trailer: U-Haul VT16, Escape 19
Posts: 984
Thanks Ric, I should have them in a week or two to compare. It's "Golden Week" in Taiwan, so there are some shipping delays. I'll be curious if they actually send eight packages. That's how the billing and shipping verifications came through! I expect the LED arrays without lenses will have a more diffuse beam, but both will be pretty directional, as you say, compared with a bulb.

I am hoping I can fit two in each fixture, and maybe add a three-way switch for high, low and off.



Planning our next Escape!
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Old 03-08-2011, 03:39 PM   #30
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Name: Rick
Trailer: former Boler, now 1980 Trillium 4500
British Columbia
Posts: 366

Ok, an update on the LED lights. I received the BA-15 bases in the mail, and put together 9 of the LED lights that I had previously bought. It was very straightforward to solder the positive lead (you have to try them out to figure out which one is the positive lead) to the centre pin and the negative lead to the shell. Then, for stability I put a couple of drops of 5 minute epoxy to glue them into position. They didn’t really seem to need gluing, but I wanted to make sure that vibration would not be an issue. I used to use 5 minute epoxy as a bonding agent when I worked on laser diode connectors for a scientific research company back in the 80’s. It is an electrical insulator and is stable over a wide temperature range, so I knew it would not create any electrical problems.
It worked very well, so a few days later I tried it out on a bench power supply running at 13 volts, similar to a charged battery. Pictures are posted.
The standard 1156 light bulb is noticeably brighter, but the 26-LED bulb is plenty bright also. You can see the current draw in the multimeter in the pictures. The 1156 bulb is drawing 1.4 Amps, and the LED bulb is drawing about 80 milliamps. The colours are comparable, which was important for me because I am not crazy about the harsher blue-white light that the earlier LEDs produced.
I also put in a couple of pictures of the LED bulb, which shows that very basic construction.
So, I am very happy with the LED lights. Now I am (still!) waiting for spring to install them.
Rick G
Attached Thumbnails
1156 bulb.JPG   26LED bulb.JPG  

26led bulb mounted.jpg   26led bulb mounted2.jpg  


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Old 03-21-2011, 01:04 PM   #31
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Name: Rick
Trailer: former Boler, now 1980 Trillium 4500
British Columbia
Posts: 366

Hi, here is another update on the LED lights. Over this past weekend I installed new light fixtures in place of the originals in our Trillium 4500 trailer, solely because we liked the look of the new fixtures and the switches on the old ones were getting flaky. These replaced the single light fixtures above the rear bed on both the driver and passenger sides, and the fixture above the front dinette suite. We are waiting for more parts to arrive before installing a new light fixture over the kitchen counter.

Anyway, the LED lights were a disappointment at first. They were a good colour, but were simply not bright enough to adequately light the trailer for our satisfaction, when compared to the original 1141 light bulbs. After thinking it over, I decided that we needed to have more light in the trailer.

Two possibilities suggested themselves. I could either install additional light sockets in each fixture, which was my original thought, or double the LED light bulbs in each socket. I figured that having two of the LEDs in each fixture would be close to the brightness of the original bulbs. Since I can run 16 of the LED bulbs for the same current consumption as 1 of the original bulbs, doubling up would still give a noticeable improvement in power consumption.

So, I made double light bulbs (two LED lights in each base) so that the doubled LED bulbs would fit into a single socket. The result looked like a capital letter Y, with the LEDs as the upper arms and the base as the vertical part. They were installed in the light fixtures so that the LEDs did not contact the fixture.

This worked much better, and the light was pretty much the same brightness as the old bulbs. However, we still wanted more light over the front dinette, so I replaced the single socket fixture with a double one, which then had two double LED bulbs in it. This worked very well. I may install a double socket fixture in one of the rear bed lights so we can make it brighter for reading, and also another single fixture at the front door as an entry light, we will see how it goes. The Trillium is 2 feet longer than the Boler, meaning that there is a lot more space to light.

For the eventual light over the kitchen counter, we are going to install an outdoor house fixture that looks a bit like a Boler trailer (link to picture here:!outdoor-light_shop ) . We had two of those in our previous Boler and liked the feel a lot. I am currently undecided whether to light it with 4-6 flat 24-LED lights at 1 watt each, or to use a 110V - 9 watt fluorescent light powered by an inverter (so we can run it off the battery). I would prefer the LEDs if they give off enough light because then I will not have to use an inverter (which consumes a bit of power itself), but I will have to try them out to see how it goes. The LEDs are on order from China at $2.20 each, link to picture here: e=STRK:MEWNX:IT

Lots of fun. I am enjoying figuring this out even though the weather is still poor in northern Alberta.

Rick G

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