Author Topic: Wire gauge for LED lights  (Read 1726 times)

Morebassman

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Wire gauge for LED lights
« on: March 12, 2017, 02:32:52 PM »
What is the minimum gauge of wire that can be used safely to install LED lights in a Locomotive. When you start adding head lights, ditch lights, rear lights, speakers, resistors... ect. the shell starts to fill up with not much room to put it back on in some locos.

Alan

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Re: Wire gauge for LED lights
« Reply #1 on: March 12, 2017, 02:40:46 PM »
Smaller than you can buy! :)

There is so little LED current traveling such a short distance that itsy bitsy wire will work fine. Look how small the wires coming from the trucks are and they have to pass 1/2 amp to the motor. A LED needs a mere fraction of that. 30AWG is tiny and will work.
Alan

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When I was a kid... no wait, I still do that. HO, 28x32, double deck, 1969, RailPro

KPack

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Re: Wire gauge for LED lights
« Reply #2 on: March 12, 2017, 08:53:34 PM »
I get my LEDs pre-wired from Evan Designs http://www.modeltrainsoftware.com/smd-chip-leds.html.  They are soldered to magnet wire and I have never had an issue.  I've used LEDs from another source with even smaller magnet wire (almost looked like hair) and have had no issues.  Magnet wire isn't the easiet to work with, but it saves a ton of space.

-Kevin

G8B4Life

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Re: Wire gauge for LED lights
« Reply #3 on: March 12, 2017, 10:50:53 PM »
I get my LEDs pre-wired from Evan Designs

How well do these work for headlights? I have been contemplating these (http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/172572943871) which appear very popular but haven't ordered anything yet. I have 2 GEVO's and a few SD70ACe's (if I order them, so much to mod on them) that still come with bulbs - thankyou OMI and Athearn!  >:(

- Tim

KPack

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Re: Wire gauge for LED lights
« Reply #4 on: March 12, 2017, 11:21:42 PM »
Tim - They work alright, though it would be easier if I could find the correct size of fiber optic.  I mount the chip size SMD LEDs behind the headlights in a way that it will shine through both lenses.  With fiber optics it would be more predictable though.  The pico size fits inside of most ditchlight housings without an issue.  Color is good, brightness far exceeds any bulb.

The kits by Al Mayo take a lot of guess work out of it and are probably nice.  I haven't used them.  The cost is higher than just getting a bunch of LED's from Evan Designs, and I can't say I'm a huge fan of the guy.  But that's my own opinion and shouldn't have a bearing on whether or not someone uses his product.

Here's a short video showing the lead loco with LEDs from Evan Designs.  All my locos have full LEDs.

-Kevin
« Last Edit: March 12, 2017, 11:24:32 PM by KPack »

Morebassman

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Re: Wire gauge for LED lights
« Reply #5 on: March 13, 2017, 09:02:47 AM »
Thanks for the info! That really gives me feel better about what I was using... 30 gauge.

BP125V

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Re: Wire gauge for LED lights
« Reply #6 on: December 26, 2019, 06:54:59 AM »
I get my LEDs pre-wired from Evan Designs http://www.modeltrainsoftware.com/smd-chip-leds.html.  They are soldered to magnet wire and I have never had an issue.  I've used LEDs from another source with even smaller magnet wire (almost looked like hair) and have had no issues.  Magnet wire isn't the easiet to work with, but it saves a ton of space.

-Kevin

Thanks for the tip Kevin.  I am just getting started with all of this stuff - RailPro and LEDs, and appreciate your insight (along with others here in this user group).  What voltage would be appropriate for the Evans Design LED's for HO Athearn RTR locomotives?  I'm guessing the same would apply to other loco manufacturers like Scaletrains and Atlas?

Thanks,
Bill

BP125V

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Re: Wire gauge for LED lights
« Reply #7 on: December 27, 2019, 08:25:21 AM »
LOL.  Never mind.  I found Bill's "Choosing LED's" thread.  Good stuff.

Bill