Time is the coin of your life. It is the only coin you have, and only you can determine how it will be spent. Be careful lest you let other people spend it for you. -- Carl Sandburg
There's only one rule that I know of, babies -- goddammit, you've got to be kind. -- Kurt Vonnegut

June 25, 2011

LEDs and Deco

LED Bulbs

B15 base LED installed in porch light
Aluminum cookie bent to send beam down

Porch light with LED lit
I got my new LED bulbs today from http://www.prudentrver.com.  Great service as I only ordered them Thursday.  I got replacements for my 6 halogen puck lights under the upper cabinets and the porch light next to the side door.  The site where I ordered them has really good information on how to select the replacements and how to figure out what kind of base the bulbs are.  I don't remember where I found this site but I bookmarked it.

G4 prong LED bulb inseted into halogen puck light

Puck light with LED

I got the G4 side prong halogen lights and the porch light was a B15s.  The porch light LED has a little 2 LED strip wired into the B15 base that gets mounted on an aluminum "cookie" heat sink.  I could add more of the strips to get more light if I need it.  The back of my light is made of aluminum so that would have sufficed as the heat sink.  I decided to bend the "cookie" and adhere the LED strip to the upper part so it faces down and out.  The old bulb base was corroded so I put a light coat of dielectric grease on the LED base to protect it from corrosion.  It was very easy to install.  I just slipped the aluminum heat sink behind the bulb receiver and the fixture edge holds it in place.  The LED strip came with double sided tape already installed.

The halogen puck lights were easy to replace as well.  It took a little maneuvering to get the prongs into the fixture but it worked fine in all but one fixture.  That one also had the halogen bulb come loose so the prong holder thingamajig is probably near shot.  I got it in and they work well.  When I opened the light over the sink, the aluminum backer fell out.  It was rough with oxidation so I sanded it with 600 grit wet sandpaper which smoothed it up.  A thin coat of dielectric grease on it should keep that from happening again.

All the LEDs are the warm white type with the yellow lights.  The beam isn't quite as broad as on the old lights but it is fine.  The light is a bit whiter than old bulbs but not blue like some LEDs.  With just the under cabinet LEDs on, the interior is plenty bright enough to do anything and the color is pleasant.  I tended to use the puck lights longer than the ceiling florescent lights and will make a point of using them now that they are LEDs.  These should make it easy to run on batteries for a long time.  I will probably replace the fluorescents but that will take a little more study to figure out what I need to do that.
Hole needs cover

Flashing with nuts taped

Plate covers hole.  New Switch cover on right

Old plain white cover

New decorative cover

New decorative cover
Removing the old TrippLite remote panel when replacing the inverter left a hole in the wall over the side door.   I got a blank electrical cover to cover it.  I decided to get new decorative electrical covers to make the van interior a little prettier.  I might change out the receptacles with brown ones someday, but these please me a lot more than the plain white ones that were there.

The hole over the side door was a little wider than the holes to attach the plate.  The plate just covered the hole.  To have something to screw the plate into, I cut a little piece of aluminum flashing I had laying around, drilled holes for the plate and taped nuts to the back so the plate screws had something to hold onto.  I then inserted the flashing piece behind the vinyl wall covering which held it ok.

I used my label maker to make a label for the 3 position switch that selects the electric water heater or the microwave and applied it to the new cover.

Today, I use wet 600 grit sandpaper to smooth the two coats of polyurethane varnish on my desk and table I'm building.  That smoothed it out nicely.  Two more coats went on.  Tomorrow, I'll do two more coats on the other side of the pieces and then it should be ready to install.

1 comment:

  1. Neat post. I've been thinking of doing the LED for quite some time. The site ref is great.
    Happy travels!


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