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Thread: AnimalHippie's $12 DIY Rock Lights

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Old 01-06-2019, 01:46 PM   #1
Rock Crawler
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Ocala, Florida, USA
Posts: 550
Default AnimalHippie's $12 DIY Rock Lights

This is my first DIY thread. So if I mess up or miss something let me know or ask questions.

Per truck this kit cost less then $12. Maybe $25 in material, but you will have enough for a couple trucks. I also used 12v LED strip because I wanted to power it directly from my battery. You can use 5v LED strips just have to wire the switch to the rx instead of to the battery.

Parts list:
12v LED strip
Wire (I used 20ga)
1/16"x1/2"aluminum c channel (can use flat stock)
E6000
Solder
12v switch
Sand paper 220 grit
Neodymium magnets



Ok with that out of the way let's get started. First thing decide on how many sections of the LED strip you want per fender. For this rig I used single sections. Next cut the strip to size and lightly sand the solder points on the LED board. You want to remove all of that coating that's on there. That stuff really stops the solder from sticking. Here's what the boards should look like after sanding.


Some of the boards you can see I did both sides. That's just because of how I'm routing the wires. You will have to figure out how you want to wire yours. Tin your wires and LED boards. Then solder wires to the boards.



The LED strips I bought are double row of LEDs with a aluminum back plate. I noticed that they get a little hot. So with Tin snips I cut the sides off my aluminum c channel for a little more structure and heat sink. Could use flat stock, but c channel is what I had. The strips are plyable and so is the aluminum. So just bend to fit your fender wells. Don't go to extreme tho. I used E6000 to adhere the strip to the aluminum and Neodymium magnets to hold everything together while drying. Most single row LED strip I have found has a adhesive back and is flexible. I still recommend using a thin piece aluminum to back those strips & E6000, but it's up to you. I also use E6000 on my solder joints to the board just for a little insurance. I noticed before I started doing that I had allot of issues of wires coming off the boards while routing the lights in my rig.
Once everything dries you can decide on how you would like to mount them. I cut small rectangular holes in my wheel wells and tucked each end into the inner fender on this rig. On my Trx-4 I only tucked one side in and E6000 it to the inner fender.


Next is to decide where you want you switch to be. I have the switch installed on the RX box on the dingo. Still working on switch location in the Trx. Solder your switch. Then solder your wires to you battery connection on the ESC. Install the switch and route your wires.
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Old 01-06-2019, 01:49 PM   #2
Rock Crawler
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Ocala, Florida, USA
Posts: 550
Default Re: AnimalHippie's $12 DIY Rock Lights

Here's some pics of the rigs lit up. Trx-4 has 2 sections of LEDs per fender. Dingo has one section per fender.


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Old 01-07-2019, 08:16 PM   #3
Quarry Creeper
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Sacramento
Posts: 215
Default Re: AnimalHippie's $12 DIY Rock Lights

Nice work!
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Old 01-08-2019, 05:00 AM   #4
Rock Crawler
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Ocala, Florida, USA
Posts: 550
Default Re: AnimalHippie's $12 DIY Rock Lights

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonnie Fraz View Post
Nice work!


Thank you! It's not the prettiest work, but when you're a crawler on a budget. You gotta do what you gotta do.
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Last edited by AnimalHippie; 01-08-2019 at 05:02 AM.
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Old 01-08-2019, 07:27 AM   #5
I wanna be Dave
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: PA
Posts: 9,137
Default Re: AnimalHippie's $12 DIY Rock Lights

Cool idea! Thanks for sharing.
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Old 01-08-2019, 03:49 PM   #6
Rock Crawler
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Ocala, Florida, USA
Posts: 550
Default Re: AnimalHippie's $12 DIY Rock Lights

Quote:
Originally Posted by JatoTheRipper View Post
Cool idea! Thanks for sharing.


Thanks Jato! Glad you like them. Having rock lights has made me like night crawling better then running in the daytime.
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Old 01-11-2019, 11:21 AM   #7
Rock Crawler
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Ocala, Florida, USA
Posts: 550
Default Re: AnimalHippie's $12 DIY Rock Lights

Here's a night run video. Enjoy! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qPdGlmc-vc8
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