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LED nav light bulb conversions


Craig
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I have been reading LED sites all night. Has anyone converted their PERKO running lights with the small festoon bulbs to LED? There seems to be two schools of thought on powering these. Resistors are the easiest but waste the dropped voltage as heat when running off the 12vdc battery. DC to DC converters are a more ellegant solution but drive up costs and add another risk factor to the reliability chain. I really don't want to reinvent the "light bulb" here so if any of you have made the conversion and wish to share the design I would be forever in your debt. The premanufactured nav lights offered today are just too expensive and none specify a replacement bulb. Thanks

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There was an article in Duckworks on coversion that made a lot of sense and seemed reasonable to do. I believe it took 9 LED bulbs to give the same coverage as the standard bulb but used only a small fraction of the power and of course should last almost forever. Didn't look too difficult to accomplish if I recall. Will see if I can find a link to it.

OK, found it.

http://www.duckworksmagazine.com/05/articles/twoideas/free.cfm

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Thanks Barry. I had seen this article. He is using 1.5", 12v bulbs. My fixtures need the ~7/8" size and I can only get two of the led bulbs in the smaller housings for the mast and tail light. MY side lights are big enough for this though. I wonder if anyone makes the festoon bulbs with the leds pointing in diffrent directions???

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 3 months later...

Those are essentially the same as any LED. The problem is the D cell battery's life. I use to sell industrial grade Duracell batteries. The D has about twice the life as the C which is twice the life of the A and so on. LEDs all use low voltages to operate. The higher voltage ones have an internal voltage dropping resistor.

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