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LED Brake / Running Light Controller Diagram

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Phil
Owner, Oznium.com

Joined: Feb 11 2003
Posts: 7719


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Post Thu Oct 08, 2009 2:37 pm

So if you're building custom LED brake lights, you'll want to have full intensity when the brake is pressed, and somewhere around half intensity when you're just cruising.

It is best to use a Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) circuit that flashes the LEDs on and off really fast (faster than the human eye can detect). This gives the appearance of dimming.

Oznium.com offers a simple LED dimmer for $19.99 that can easily be used to control your LED brake light project.

Not just for brake lights though! You could easily adapt this method for dimming interior lights, headlight accents, whatever...

BUY AT OZNIUM.COM for $16.99: https://www.oznium.com/switches/rotary-led-dimmer

And the relay: https://www.oznium.com/wire-12v-and-relays/relay40

The cool thing about this LED dimmer is that you can simply "dial in" the best brightness level once, and then just leave it.

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TWO WIRING METHODS

Is your control source a negative/ground switched wire?
Meaning, is the positive wire constantly connected,
and the negative/ground wire the one that is switched on and off...
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Is your control source a positive/power switched wire?
Meaning, is the negative/ground wire constantly connected,
and the positive/power wire the one that is switched on and off...
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BUY AT OZNIUM.COM for $19.99: https://www.oznium.com/switches/rotary-led-dimmer

And the relay: https://www.oznium.com/wire-12v-and-relays/relay40
Chris

Joined: Sep 27 2004
Posts: 2395
Location: NY


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Post Thu Oct 08, 2009 3:16 pm

Couldnt you do this with a simple resistor and transistor?
Phil
Owner, Oznium.com

Joined: Feb 11 2003
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Post Thu Oct 08, 2009 4:50 pm

I really doubt it, but could be wrong.
Milan

Joined: Oct 10 2009
Posts: 4


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Post Sat Oct 10, 2009 10:11 am

I think I will need something like to see how bright the factory brake lights are, unless someone else has a better idea icon_confused.gif
Phil
Owner, Oznium.com

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Post Sat Oct 10, 2009 12:49 pm

Another diagram, for just using the LED dimmer in its most basic application:

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kramer13
Oznium Employee

Joined: Jun 20 2004
Posts: 3744
Location: Baltimore, MD


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Post Sun Oct 11, 2009 12:19 pm

Also, the dimmer will not work with the Spots or Floods.
Whelan

Joined: Oct 13 2009
Posts: 7


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Post Tue Oct 13, 2009 9:39 am

I can understand the need in that it allows you to select the amount of brightness or dim you want. But what about an item like this:


Converts any Flexible Array into a dual intensity Running/Brake Light or Running/Turn Signal. Allows array to illuminate at 1/2 intensity for running lights and full intensity for brake lights. Application chart shows what circuit you need depending on 5-10, 15-25, 30-60, 65-100 LEDs.
Milan

Joined: Oct 10 2009
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Post Tue Oct 13, 2009 10:03 am

Whelan wrote:
I can understand the need in that it allows you to select the amount of brightness or dim you want. But what about an item like this

If you don't want your lights to match your factory lights, then that would work. It allows the full brightness of the LED's for the brakes, and then cuts that brightness in half (which may or may not look good) for the parking lights.
Whelan

Joined: Oct 13 2009
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Post Tue Oct 13, 2009 10:26 am

For me it would work, I already have LEDs for a 3rd brake light that were custom made. The brake lamps would be full LED instead of the bulbs in there now. They do not make LED tail lights for the 03-08 Toyota Matrix (just every other Toyota ever made). So I'm SOL for this unless I do it myself. But I need dual intensity.

Unless of course I wire some into the stop and others into the park.
Phil
Owner, Oznium.com

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Post Wed Oct 14, 2009 12:19 pm

Whelan wrote:
I can understand the need in that it allows you to select the amount of brightness or dim you want. But what about an item like this:


Converts any Flexible Array into a dual intensity Running/Brake Light or Running/Turn Signal. Allows array to illuminate at 1/2 intensity for running lights and full intensity for brake lights. Application chart shows what circuit you need depending on 5-10, 15-25, 30-60, 65-100 LEDs.


Yes, technically a simple resistor will work, but it is really a bad way to do it. You can choose between 5-10, 15,25, 30-60, and 65-100 LEDs. Well all LEDs are not the same. Some are brighter and draw a more power than others, thus screwing up the calculations. You're going to need a huge power resistor for any serious brake lamp application you're building. It seems that trying to use a resistor for this is just like taking shots in the dark.

The PWM circuit (LED dimmer) is a much better way to do it. Why would you want to use a resistor?
Milan

Joined: Oct 10 2009
Posts: 4


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Post Wed Oct 14, 2009 12:34 pm

Phil wrote:
You're going to need a huge power resistor for any serious brake lamp application
I would think it would get rather hot too icon_sad.gif
bad venge

Joined: Jul 28 2007
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Post Wed Oct 14, 2009 1:02 pm

It's a rediculously LARGE high wattage resistor ...
Also IF you have the taillight monitors LED's will LIKELY show you have a burnt out bulb , AND the turns will flash fast
Whelan

Joined: Oct 13 2009
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Post Thu Oct 15, 2009 11:51 am

Lucky for me I dont have that taillight out icon.
byte

Joined: Mar 25 2009
Posts: 313


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Post Thu Oct 15, 2009 5:54 pm

Phil wrote:
Whelan wrote:
I can understand the need in that it allows you to select the amount of brightness or dim you want. But what about an item like this:


Converts any Flexible Array into a dual intensity Running/Brake Light or Running/Turn Signal. Allows array to illuminate at 1/2 intensity for running lights and full intensity for brake lights. Application chart shows what circuit you need depending on 5-10, 15-25, 30-60, 65-100 LEDs.


Yes, technically a simple resistor will work, but it is really a bad way to do it. You can choose between 5-10, 15,25, 30-60, and 65-100 LEDs. Well all LEDs are not the same. Some are brighter and draw a more power than others, thus screwing up the calculations. You're going to need a huge power resistor for any serious brake lamp application you're building. It seems that trying to use a resistor for this is just like taking shots in the dark.

The PWM circuit (LED dimmer) is a much better way to do it. Why would you want to use a resistor?


If that is a resistor, why does it have 3 wires?
Milan

Joined: Oct 10 2009
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Post Thu Oct 15, 2009 6:20 pm

byte wrote:
If that is a resistor, why does it have 3 wires?
Because it's part of a circuit... icon_wink.gif
Frankenstrat

Joined: Feb 04 2010
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Post Thu Feb 04, 2010 10:48 am

Could you wire this directly to the tail light pigtails?
bad venge

Joined: Jul 28 2007
Posts: 3550


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Post Thu Feb 04, 2010 11:57 am

See your other question for will it work ...
YES you can wire direct to the taillight sockets ect
vphoto

Joined: Feb 14 2010
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Post Sun Feb 14, 2010 8:21 pm

I own a Suzuki Burgman scooter and would like to use the rotary style dimmer switch along with two prewired surface mount LEDs as lighting for some of my controls on my handlebars. As I understand it, the LEDs are very bright so that is why I would need the dimmer.

Would I need a switch for each LED or can they both be wired into one switch. Secondly, I plan to wire them switched power utilizing a Fuzeblock ( http://www.fuzeblocks.com/) Is this possible?
bad venge

Joined: Jul 28 2007
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Post Sun Feb 14, 2010 9:24 pm

depending on your application you can install a resistor to dim them as well , and make it not adjustable , and your sitch question yes you can easily wire them to one switch
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