Little Tiny Flood Lamp To Light Up Your Night Float.

This is a typical bright (5,000 mcd brightness) white LED rated at 4 Volts DC. Nice and bright but the "bright spot" is limited to about 20 degrees. To turn this into a nice flood lamp or reading lamp, do the following: GadgetA01.jpg (16757 bytes)
Mask the leads with some tape exposed so you can stick it to something while the paint dries. GadgetA02.jpg (21351 bytes)
Spray the LED with white or silver paint to make a nice reflective coating. GadgetA03.jpg (16285 bytes)
Then spray with a couple of coats of black or brown paint to block light "leakage". Let dry overnight so the paint will be completely cured.

You can omit the paint altogether if you are just looking for a wide angle light bulb. 

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Using a belt sander with a fine or medium grit belt, sand away the round end of the LED. Go slowly to prevent heat buildup in the plastic. Leaving the end like this will make a fine frosted light diffuser. Or, you can sand again with fine paper then polish to a clear lens. (Not really necessary.) GadgetA05.jpg (26431 bytes)
Now, you have a nice flood lamp with 180 degrees of light, and about 150 degrees of good even brightness. Great for wide-even illumination of your boat deck from relatively close deck-mounted fixtures. Incorporate them into scale lighting fixtures. 

Remember that LEDs are not bulbs. Connect the battery "+" to the longer lead of the LED. If you connect them to voltages greater than their rated "forward voltage" you must wire them with a resistor calculated to limit the current to the LED. Since this one was rated at 4 volts, I connected directly with two AA batteries (about 3.2 volts) and got a nice bright light. If you are experimenting, put a milli-amp meter in series to be sure that the amperage to the LED  is equal to or less than the LED's "Max forward 20mA continuous" current rating. This will ensure that it will not burn out soon. Most are good for 50,000 to 100,000 hours (11 years) of continuous use. 



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To keep the wiring simple, I installed all lights into the removable pilot house assembly.  

Here I installed 7 of the "flood-lamp" LEDs and red & green marker LEDs on the roof. All of the flood lamps are pointed down.

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Flood lamps are secured with a quick dab of low-temp hot-melt glue. (I held a damp paper towel on the outside of the plastic to keep it cool, when quickly applying a dab of glue.  GadgetA08.jpg (29689 bytes)
I connected the parallel circuit to 3 alkaline batteries and got the brightness I needed. Use of a resistor will be necessary if you have to use a higher supply voltage. GadgetA09.jpg (19970 bytes)
I need to add one light at the front of the pilothouse, and maybe a pair on the top of the stack to illuminate the V's on each side.  GadgetA11.jpg (20296 bytes)