Author Topic: LED and Wiring question  (Read 2813 times)

January 02, 2009, 05:19:07 PM
Read 2813 times

Zircor

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What size wire should I be using to put LEDs in my kits? (mostly MGs so far, but maybe a few 1/144s when I'm comfortable doing it).  Anything else I should be aware of for doing this?  I've read tons of tutorials and stuff about putting them in kits, so am pretty OK with doing it for now, I reckon  :)  Got a TON of LEDs (5mm ones though - gonna order some 3mm soon) from Christmas light sales - spent maybe $15 and have roughly 250 LEDs in varying colors.  They're flat-topped ones with an inverse cone, so not sure how well the light will be focused, but should be interesting to see.

Anyone have any pictures of wiring an old USB cord to do the powering, too?  I have a few batteries lying around I can use, but am trying to be cost-efficient in doing this.

January 09, 2009, 05:47:38 AM
Reply #1

FichtenFoo

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I usually use wire-wrap wire and the wire wrapping tool. It's very very thin.

January 09, 2009, 01:42:27 PM
Reply #2

Zircor

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I usually use wire-wrap wire and the wire wrapping tool. It's very very thin.

What gauge would you say?

January 09, 2009, 03:14:28 PM
Reply #3

FichtenFoo

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« Last Edit: January 09, 2009, 03:16:14 PM by FichtenFoo »

February 10, 2009, 10:11:28 PM
Reply #4

Zircor

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Should I be using solid or strand/twisted wire for doing LEDs in gundams?  I'm still trying to figure out the best stuff to purchase.  Smallest I can find is 24 Gauge.  Think that'll be too big?  Also, can you give a brief rundown of how to use the wire-wrapping thing if that ends up being the way I go?  Also, 3mm or 5mm for MGs/1/100s?

February 14, 2009, 07:54:29 AM
Reply #5

FichtenFoo

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Check my LED page on my site as that has a UBERBLINKER link with a wirewrap explanation.
« Last Edit: February 14, 2009, 07:54:47 AM by FichtenFoo »

February 28, 2009, 07:00:50 PM
Reply #6

tetsujin

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One potential issue with wire wrap wire: it is single-conductor wire, which means that the amount of mechanical stress it can take (for instance, running the wire across a moving joint) is more limited than what stranded wire is capable of.

The flip side is that single-conductor wire is much, much easier to work with.  Easier to strip, easier to connect, even easier to buy locally...  It's also one of the smaller types of wire you'll find (30 AWG wire wrap is smaller than 30 AWG stranded wire...), short of going to something like magnet wire (which has painted-on insulation and is therefore very irritating to strip...)

If you use wire wrap wire and need to run it across moving joints, I'd recommend adding loops to the wire where you can, so that it will always have a little extra slack and springiness to it.

When dealing with any kind of wiring job on moving parts, there is the danger that mechanical action will damage or ultimately break the wire. Usually breaks and such will happen in places where the wire goes from being immobile to mobile: for instance, if you solder your wire on, the part embedded in the solder is immobile while the remainder of the wire is mobile...  Or if you drill a hole and pass wire through it, the part in the hole is immobile and the part outside the hole is mobile.  The point where those two regions meet can wind up taking the bulk of the stress - if all the flexion of the wire happens at that one point, it won't last long, no matter what kind of wire it is.

This is probably a benefit of wire-wrap: because the wire is wrapped around the lead to establish contact, it should naturally have a bit of a buffer.  Still, a few extra loose loops can go a long way to protecting the wire at the point of connection.
---GEC
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