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Thread: How to solder LED rings.

  1. #1

    How to solder LED rings.

    Hi

    I am working on refurbishing old LED parcans by using WS2812 LED's in concentric rings. This will be DMX controlled via teensy. My first issue is how to solder the LED concentric rings. The distance between the pads is 10mm. So there is a ground line and a voltage line running straight between all the rings and then data is short pieces alternation on the sides.

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    I would like it to be as neat and small (less wire) as possible.

    Is the best way to just solder naked, exposed copper wire between all the relevant pads? I cannot think that it is good to have that as exposed wire in my housing, so how do I make it safe?

  2. #2
    Senior Member+ MichaelMeissner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisLaurie2 View Post
    Hi

    I am working on refurbishing old LED parcans by using WS2812 LED's in concentric rings. This will be DMX controlled via teensy. My first issue is how to solder the LED concentric rings. The distance between the pads is 10mm. So there is a ground line and a voltage line running straight between all the rings and then data is short pieces alternation on the sides.

    I would like it to be as neat and small (less wire) as possible.

    Is the best way to just solder naked, exposed copper wire between all the relevant pads? I cannot think that it is good to have that as exposed wire in my housing, so how do I make it safe?
    Note, I'm a software guy, so possibly I'm off track in terms of physical characteristics of electricity....

    I could imagine that one way to do it is carefully cut heat shrink tubing so it has holes at the solder spots, and then solder the connections, and use a heat gun to shrink the tubing.

    You could also take jumper wires, and carefully pull the wire out of the cable. Carefully cut little holes for the solder spots with diagonal cutters. Then push the wire back in. Put a little dab of solder on each of the pads. Use your soldering iron or hot air gun to melt the solder so it makes the connection.

    Using hot glue might be an option, but I've seen one report that over time, hot glue will pick up moisture and become more conductive. Also, if you are going to use the LEDs in places with high temps (Texas, Arizona, etc.) might melt the glue. You might think about using epoxy or other more permanent glues instead of hot glue.

    If you only want three concentric rings, Adafruit does make one with all of the connections between the concentric rings connected:

  3. #3
    Senior Member+ defragster's Avatar
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    This coated wire came to mind - others might say if not appropriate: amazon.com/enamelled-wire

    It is coated/insulated for wrapping coils - and links above show high temp ratings. And a variety of gauges with heavier for GND and 5V.

    This instructables.com/An-easier-way-to-solder-magnet-wire-to-SMD-LEDs gives some tips on use - it seems some needs stripped - others the coating goes away at point of soldering.

    Perhaps a conformal coating applied to the soldered spots would assure it is touch safe from shorts or other worries with the low voltage.

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