How to Make Your Own LED Work Light
Are you in need of your own LED work light? Perhaps you are a sucker for industrial design lighting?
Then this LED work light is a great project to sink your teeth into.
But, before you start, you will need to get your hands on some basic components. Apart from a decent milling machine, various drill bits, and a bench vice, you will also need the following bits and pieces.
We have included links to some of the products in case you need to buy them:
- 1 no. mini MTS-102 3-Pin miniature toggle switches
- 1 no. 120x36 mm 1300LM 12V 12 W COB ultra-bright LED light
- Length of seal proof unreinforced PVC clear vinyl tubing
- 6-inch thick heavy-duty aluminum blocks
- 1 no. Digital caliper
- 1 no. Black Sharpie permanent marker pen
- 1 no. adjustable T-handle screw threader
- Soldering iron and accessories
- Clear Perspex acrylic/plexiglass sheeting
- Length of armature wire or other bendable metal alternatives
- Cloth electrical insulation tape
- Nuts and bolts
- Electrical wiring
With all these goodies in hand, it is time to crack on and start building your very own LED work light.
The first step is to cut a piece of aluminum to size. It should be the same width as the LED light and slightly longer, as shown in the video.
You can now machine the cut block to trim off any excess, spurs, and cut marks. Continue refining the shape until it is 36mm in width.
Next, you will need to mark a series of parallel lines using the marker pen and machine a series of grooves into the metal block -- as shown in the image below. You will also need to trim down the outermost grooves slightly.
On the reverse side, you will also need to machine a wider, shorter groove to later house the electrical cabling for the LED and toggle switch. With these steps finished, sand down all machined areas to remove any metal spurs.
Next, drill a series of holes, as shown in the video, to the top, bottom, and end of the aluminum main body. These will house the toggle switch and light support later.
Now drill a screw thread using the T-handle screw threader to the bottommost drill hole, as shown below.
On the grooveless side of the aluminum bar, place the LED light into place, mark out where screw holes are needed, drill the holes, and thread them using the T-handle screw threader once again.
Next, take the base of one of the miniature toggle switches and place them into the lozenge-shaped hole on the grooveless side of the aluminum bar. Cut two lengths of electrical wire, as shown, and solder to the toggle switch's base as instructed.
With this step complete, finish the assembly of the toggle switch on the other side of the block, and tighten to make a snug fit.
The next stage is to solder the wires from the toggle switch to the LED light. Ensure you match up the wires to the correct contacts on the LED light.
With the soldering complete, simply adhere the LED light assembly to the aluminum base, as shown. You will also need to place a c-shaped piece of metal to surround the wiring.
The next step is to cut two pieces of perspex/plexiglass to the same dimensions of the metal block. Ensure they also have screw holes to match those machined earlier on the smoother side of the block.
Place on top of the LED light and c-shaped metal piece, and screw into place.
Now take the PVC vinyl tuning and armature wire/bendable metal and cut to the desired length. These will form the bendable neck of the lamp.
Secure one end of the bendable metal wire into the rear hole, as shown in the video, and secure in place using a headless screw.
Enclose the wiring, and armature wire/bendable metal strips inside the plastic tubing and secure in place on the LED light.
Hey, presto, you have just built your very own, awesome-looking LED work light. Now just plug it into the mains or rig up a battery holder, turn it on, and take pride in your amazing workmanship!
Professor Gretchen Benedix is an astrogeologist and cosmic mineralogist who studies meteorites and figures the forming stages of the solar system.