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ellerbro 07-27-08 02:53 PM

DIY Rear Light?
Wondering if anyone has made a rear light using a single high output LED like this one? It has a wide angle and can run up to 700 mA, seems perfect for a rear light. I'm thinking of using an off-the-shelf blinky that holds 3AA or 3AAA, pulling out its circuitry and installing the LED with resistor instead. Any good blinky hosts for this mod?

Nouia 07-27-08 03:05 PM

I made one using that LED (got mine at KD though), I put it in an Altoids tin and used a 30 degree optic (not shown in the pic). I think I ran it up to 1000 mA without problems. It was really bright but the construction just wasn't good enough for long term use. I'm in the process of building a replacement using the same components but housed in a 1" copper end cap or something similar.

This is a useful thread

ellerbro 07-27-08 04:41 PM

Very cool. That's exactly the kind of thing I'm wanting to do. I wonder if an optic is really necessary since a rear light should have a very wide angle right? I'm gonna head down to my LBS to check out their blinkies and see if any would make a good host. The light needs to be waterproof (rainproof at least) and have easy access to the batteries. Hopefully I can use the switch that's on the light in order to minimize hacking.

Nouia 07-27-08 05:29 PM

Most would advise against not having an optic, but I can tell you from working on mine that with a light this bright, people will still see it if you just have the bare emitter.

Personally, I would actually think its easier to start completely from scratch than to mod an existing blinkie. I just don't like having to work around someone else's design that's not made for what I'm doing. Unless its the kind of thing where your doing a basic emitter swap and the existing design is already based around the 20mm pcb star form factor, such as the Princeton Tec Eos headlamp mod that is popular over at CPF:

With only 4 parts (led, switch, battery pack, driver) you can really make it as minimalist and robust as you want, though, go which ever route makes the most sense to you.

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