Ultrabright LED Emergency Lamp (Rechargeable!)

Preparing for a calamity or go camping? Make an ultrabright emergency light in just minutes! Best part is: it glows a 360° and completly WATERPROOF!. In addition the jar's lid can be detached from the jar turning it into a compact flashlight! This is a simple project that uses a 3W LED and a BL-5C (Li-ion) Nokia battery. Macgyver Style!

It's completely rechargeable, via USB or wallwart (5v), only takes an hour to fully charge the lamp. If you remember my previous project: "DIY Portable USB Solar Charger", you can charge the jar using a solar panel. Free renewable energy! The goal is to make this project as simple as you can.

Top 10 Practical Uses:

1st.) Portable Emergency Light
2nd.) Camping Light/ Lamp
3rd.) Swimming Pool Floating Lights!
4th.) Nightlight (Sidetable Lamp)
5th.) Constant Camera Flash (Light)
6th.) Waterproof Rescue Lights!
7th.) Solar Powered LED Lamp
8th.) Garden Props & Ornaments
9th.) Replacements for gas lamps
10th.) Halloween Lights (Modded Version)

Real Life Scenario (my experience):

(11/8/13) - A Category 4 typhoon has entered the Philippine area of responsibility. Codenamed: Yolanda
(11/8/13) - President Noynoy declared a state of calamity, told to brace ourselves. (11/8/13) - My parents told me to charge all our lamps, unfortunately 2 out 4 emergency lamps are broken.
(11/8/13) - I made a simple "Jar Emergency Light" in just 5 minutes!
(11/9/13) - Typhoon reached our area, extreme rain and winds.
(11/9/13) - 1:00am The Blackout Started, my 1st time to use the LED Jar :D

Step 1: Gathering Tools & Materials

Since this was a "Macgyver" type of assembly, the parts needed to come from recycled parts. Most of them came from my scrap radio on the other hand my 3W LED came from an old 220v LED Bulb.

Materials: - 3W Ultrabright LED (Radioshack or AC LED Bulbs) - Red LED Indicator (Recycled Parts) - BL-5C Nokia Battery (Old Nokia Phone) - 1N4007 Recitifer Diode (Recycled Parts) - 470 ohm Resistor (Radioshack or Recycled Parts) - On/ Off switch (Recycled Parts) - DC Power Jack (Recycled Parts) - Scotch Mounting Strips

Tools & Equipment: - Soldering Iron - Hot Glue Gun - Leatherman - Portable Drill

Step 2: Hot Glue The Parts In Place

1st.) Drill two holes (6mm) for your "Charger's Plug" and for the "Slider Switch" 2nd.) Solder two wires to your BL-5C's positive and negative terminals. 3rd.) Hot glue everything In place! 4th.) Use a small strip of Scotch's mounting pads to mount the 3W LED (BTW, they don't melt)

Want To Make It Waterproof? 

Don't drill holes, just hot glue the socket and switch inside the jar/ lid. Just unscrew the lid to charge!

Step 3: Optional: Adding a USB Lithium USB Charger

When you charge your lamp, trickle charging isn't the best way to charge lithium batteries. When overcharged, they have the tendency to explode. If you plan to use this in long terms, it's ideal to attach this module for safety.

You can buy it here for $1.70! "1A Lithium Battery Charging Module - Blue"

Step 4: The Schematic Diagram

One thing you must know BL-5C batteries, they have a voltage protection circuit inside them. You can trickle charge these batteries at 5 volts, just limit the charge time for an hour. If you want to take precaution, there are Lithium battery chargers available out there.

How Does The Circuit Work? 

This is a very simple circuit that doesn't require circuit boards. All it does is trickle charge the battery, a rectifier diode was added to prevent the backflow of current. I added a LED charging indicator just to show whether the jar is charging or not.

Step 5: Solder Everything In Place

Just follow the circuit diagram and you are good to go! A perf board isn't necessary but if you insist then go ahead.

Step 6: Charge Testing

Cool! If you've done it right, the jar should glow red when the charging. You can also charge this with my previous project: the "DIY Portable USB Solar Charger".

Step 7: You're Done!

How about let's go camping!


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