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Old 10-06-2011, 02:13 PM   #1
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Additional LED Lighting

I ordered my 17B with LED lighting, and combined with the dual 6V batteries & solar options, I love it. Still there is always the urge to "personalize" a trailer, so I ordered strip of LEDs Bulb America. I ordered This Version which is a 16.4' (15 meter) length of Cool White LEDs that have individual LEDs spaced about 2" apart. It can be cut between every 3rd LED. I ran a strip under the awning that provides an interesting night light:


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File Type: jpg ASD_7477.jpg (182.2 KB, 330 views)
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Old 10-06-2011, 02:15 PM   #2
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Re: Additional LED Lighting

I'm adding this as a reply because I have a couple of more pictures. For more of the modifications I've done since traveling with the trailer 111 days this summer, see My Blog Spot Page.

Of course, when I was done I had a fairly long strip left over. I managed to solve another problem with the trailer - seeing inside the upper storage compartments. Since my interior lighting is under the cabinets, they don't provide any light inside the storage bays. Even during the day it is sometimes difficult to see in the backs of the cabinets; at night is it impossible. My solution during the summer was to "buy" a half dozen Harbor Freight LED flashlights (they give them away with a coupon, although now they require a purchase) & I have a bunch of them. I left one in each compartment. It worked, but sometimes I'd end up with two in one bin and none in the one I was looking in, they eventually need batteries or fail (after all they were free) so I was looking for a better solution.

I made up a bunch of cabinet length strips from the LED strip I used for the outside lighting, added a switch for each cabinet, found a power source for each and now have great lighting:
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File Type: jpg ASD_8154.jpg (88.2 KB, 236 views)
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Old 10-06-2011, 03:01 PM   #3
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Re: Additional LED Lighting

Great idea, Jon! Can you show details about how you wired the lights and switch?

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Old 10-06-2011, 03:10 PM   #4
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Re: Additional LED Lighting

That certainly is a great idea for inside the cabinets. I may just steal that.

As far as the outside goes, I was never much of a patio lantern kinda guy, but it sure does look neat.
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Old 10-06-2011, 03:26 PM   #5
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Re: Additional LED Lighting

A photo of the wiring would be difficult since the distance inside the cabinets is pretty short. What I did is look for wiring already in the cabinet. If I found it I checked that it was always live, added a 5 amp in line fuse since I was using #20 wire, and wired the switch in the + side of the run between the fuse & lighting strip.

If the cabinet didn't have a 12V source, I added one from the nearest cabinet that did. For all 7 cabinets I added 3 fuses (in other words, found either 12V DC in 4 of the cabinets or very easy runs between cabinets) however I might have had more 12V wires than most since I had Reace add 3 interior 12V outlets when the trailer was built. A pair of #20 wires are small enough that they can be threaded through the space between the back of the cabinet & the wall covering and along the front edge of the shelf over the front dinette.

The switches are from Mouser Electronics (108-0001-EVX Mountain Switch Toggle Switches SPST OFF-ON) although Radio Shack sells an equivalent for a bit more $. I thought about using a lighted switch, but found enough light leaks under the door to tell you have left it on.

The most difficult part was routing the wiring so it would be out of the way of storage in the bins. Lots of screw down cable clamps and wire ties!
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Old 10-06-2011, 03:34 PM   #6
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Re: Additional LED Lighting

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Bennett

As far as the outside goes, I was never much of a patio lantern kinda guy, but it sure does look neat.
Actually, I'm not either, but saw the installation on a large stick built trailer & liked it. I like to read & found the exterior light created too many shadows to be comfortable. The strip produces very diffused light - even the bugs have a hard time deciding where to go!

He put his on the awning tube so it was only useful when the awning was fully extended plus he had to plug & unplug it each time he used it. My only concern at this point is whether the Scotch double sided tape will continue to hold on the plastic used for waterproofing the LED strip. So far it made it on a 300 mile round trip...
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Old 10-06-2011, 03:41 PM   #7
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Re: Additional LED Lighting

How did you connect the strips to the wire? Do you need some kind of adapter, or did you just solder the leads on to the strip?
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Old 10-06-2011, 04:08 PM   #8
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Re: Additional LED Lighting

The original strip comes with 12" leads. When you cut it there are solder pads every 3 LEDs & you need to add your own wires.
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Old 10-06-2011, 04:13 PM   #9
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Re: Additional LED Lighting

Thanks, Jon. Seems fairly straight forward then. Think I will go for it. I did look at The Source website (formerly Radio Shack in Canada), and yeah....wow....at least $6 for a simple toggle switch.

It is $10 cheaper to get the strip without the weatherproof rating, which using inside I should not need. Think I will put it in the closet too.
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Old 10-06-2011, 08:19 PM   #10
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Re: Additional LED Lighting

What about a BRIGHT reading led light?
9 and / or 15 leds are not bright enough.
In the dark Geo
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