Wiring LED Tape Lighting / How to cut, connect & power

When I built the CNC machine I built opal plastic for these windows And it meant that light could come into the enclosure and it made it a little bit atmospheric

What I want to do now is add a strip of LED light so the thing illuminates I think it will look cool It isn't going to effect the way the things works to be honest I’ve bought a 5m roll of 12v LED tape This is the offcut from what I used to build a tracing light box for my partner’s classroom, so there’s not much left

It’s quite bright, and light is a cool white, and rated at about 900 lumens It also comes backed with double sided tape which is how I’ll secure it inside the enclosure I began by measuring up and cutting all the pieces into five equal sections A small section didn’t work as I accidentally stepped on it, so that part was discarded I then tinned all the exposed end terminals and either ends of the joining wires that would connect the strips together

I found holding the soldering iron with some solder suspended at it’s the tip, on the copper pads helped transfer the solder across And for the wire to do a similar thing with suspended solder on the tip, but pushing more solder into the wire from the opposite side To join these pieces you just hold the two tinned sections together and press your soldering iron at the right point, and the solder should melt and two surfaces merge together – at which point you remove the soldering iron and let it cool I try to keep a fan on while soldering to disperse the solder fumes and at some point, I will build a proper extraction system for this type of work I do have all the parts ready but just being a bit lazy

I'm going to double up the LED strip at the front of the enclosure just to it's illuminated from both sides but I only have enough to do one face I'm just going to check that I've wired this all correctly I have a feature on my soldering iron If you are doing something similar make sure you get the correct wire gauge for the application – if the flex is too thin and amperage drawn too high this can cause the wires to heat up There are online calculators to help you work the correct gauge to use, and I’ll link to some down below but I’m using 24 AWG There’s a lot of stuff already in the enclosure so I grab a pair of chopsticks to help me move, unpeel and push the led strip into position I work my way around the box and check the connections

I made one bad soldering joint which I fixed I then attached some fork crimps to the ends of the wires and screwed those to the 12v PSU terminal The LED’s need a transformer that converts the AC from the mains into DC to power the lights Now when the power is on the lights automatically turn on and provide a visual reminder that we are live – the CNC machine is ready to go The principle of installing these LED’s is the same whether you’re making a light box or installing under cupboard illumination

The effect of which is to make me happy Thank again for watching and you’ll catch me in the next one