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Unread 08-22-2012, 06:50 PM   #1
deitzberg
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Has anyone made a LED light bar

I have been looking on line and the price for led light bars are up there. Has any one ever made a light bar or individual lights for their jeep with LEDs?

I have been checking out 10w, 30w, and 50w LED high output modules and inverters. The 100w units are a little too pricey for the prototype. So far I think I could maybe make one but some input would be nice.

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Unread 08-22-2012, 07:06 PM   #2
SuperSam
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why do you need an inverter? LED's are generally DC devices. Just make sure you have enough heat sink capacity and a steady current source. Are you building from scratch or off the shelf modules?
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Unread 08-22-2012, 07:14 PM   #3
deitzberg
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The 30w and 50w leds need a 30 dc current. I would be bumping the 12vdc to 30vdc.

Heat dissipation is my biggest concern. They have some leds with heat sinks already in place but I doubt that will be enough. Would sealing the unit and filling it with mineral oil also help with the heat issue.

I am looking to build it from the ground up.
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Unread 08-22-2012, 07:47 PM   #4
SuperSam
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out of curiosity where are you getting parts?

Filling it with oil could work, but that could lead to a bunch of different issues. leaks, maintaining the level etc. Finding a larger heat sink would be easier in my opinion. do they come with lenses? I have looked at building a bar, but I cant find a lens system that incorporates multiple LEDs in one lens cluster that I like. A couple of places sell the heat sinks in extruded bars, I think those would be a great option for customizing a system.
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Unread 08-22-2012, 07:50 PM   #5
SuperSam
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Also the extruded heat sinks can double as great housings/mounts.
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Unread 08-22-2012, 07:56 PM   #6
SuperSam
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more thoughts (3 in a row... I know...) the 30+W setups might require too much heatsink to be effective on a vehicle. Also, the oil may transfer heat, but if there is not sufficient surface area, it become a really expensive heater.
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Unread 08-22-2012, 07:58 PM   #7
deitzberg
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I have been looking on ebay for the leds and drivers. I just started the search for the other parts. But i did see a single glass lens and reflective base that would fit just the led unit. But I doubt that it would look good.

Where have you found the heat sinks?
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Unread 08-22-2012, 08:03 PM   #8
deitzberg
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very true on the heat sink size. Is there any way to calculate that ahead of time or is just trial by error? I was thinking that the oil could transfer it to the outer shell made of a heat sink.
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Unread 08-22-2012, 09:08 PM   #9
SuperSam
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usually there is a recommended size/dimensions that go with the LED, without searching I cant remember of the top of my head. If there is a data sheet available, check that. Generally if you cant touch the heatsink its not big enough, but that's a generalization that might lead to some expensive failures.
check
http://www.hero-ledstore.com/
http://www.luxeonstar.com/Thermal-Management-Products-for-High-Power-LEDs-s/84.htm

http://www.ledsupply.com/

or just search heat sinks. Searching some lighting forums may yield good results for general arrangement.
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Unread 08-22-2012, 11:46 PM   #10
deitzberg
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cree or hero led?
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Unread 08-23-2012, 03:32 PM   #11
SuperSam
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either one, just match one that fits the specs you like for the price
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Unread 08-23-2012, 09:11 PM   #12
deitzberg
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I am thinking the only way to really decide how to engineer this light bar is by ordering some stuff and playing around with it. Hopefully the parts will get in for the long weekend coming up.
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Unread 08-25-2012, 05:37 PM   #13
99Griffin
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A good site to check out LEDs is superbrightled.com. I've bought lots thru them. They are about the cheapest of any LEDs I've seen and I'm still running some I've had for 7 years with no problems. You might get some inspiration there.
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Unread 08-25-2012, 08:03 PM   #14
deitzberg
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cool I will look into that site. I did order a week ago 2 led bulb replacements and they are fairly bright but they need to be in a good housing because all of the light is on the sides of the bulb. Below is a pic of what I ordered

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Unread 08-26-2012, 07:33 AM   #15
99Griffin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deitzberg
cool I will look into that site. I did order a week ago 2 led bulb replacements and they are fairly bright but they need to be in a good housing because all of the light is on the sides of the bulb. Below is a pic of what I ordered
Nice
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