Re: Altering LED light strands for layout use


Cameron, One other thought. There are commercial LEDs out there that have built-in resistors such that each LED is rated to operate directly from 5 or 12V DC. Note that 25 LEDs in a string x 5V = 125V. If you cannot find the location of the current limiting device, pull out one of the LEDs and use your voltmeter to see what voltage is actually across the LED connections when it is carefully wired back into the socket connections. If it is greater than 3.5V, there is probably an integrated  resistor inside. [Or investigate it separately using a 9V battery and external resistors to limit current. Start with a relatively high resistance, say 8-10k and lower it until the LED appears to be the same brightness as when energized in the original string.] If that is the case you can rewire as desired using individual LED parts to operate from a different voltage source of your liking.

As I said before... Don't increase the current beyond what was in the original application as you will seriously shorten the lifetime.


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