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Ulu

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A lot of material was removed before I started cutting yesterday, just to make the modified trucks work, and now I’m removing a whole lot more.
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Snagging off the rough casting on my belt sander.
 

Ulu

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So here is the base, all sanded up neatly but not polished. This might end up a little silly looking.

Instead of using regular screws I mounted it with a couple of t-nuts.

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Here I’m showing the original base plate from the Original S10 truck.
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This is how I had made it work with the Indy truck base plate.
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Ulu

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This is a carriage bolt, so I made a square hole in the housing such that it does not turn; and then I ground the head off for maximum clearance internal to the lamp.
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Underneath is a piece of brass sprinkler and a piece of brass plated aluminum from a tire inflator, that together form a ball and socket joint.

I dished the plated aluminum part to fit the curve of the housing, so it does not need a wrench.

I took a dished washer and smashed it down 10° on one side. This all corrects the aim of the lamp.
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Of course I had to gut it for the test fitting.
 

Ulu

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I have been working hard to get it ready for a new year ride.

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No one will ever see this side again. I’m going to sand it to fit.

This was a souvenir keyfob my mother brought me from Cincinnati Ohio. I trimmed off the keychain loop and dressed up the edges to get rid of the Knicks and gave the bronze anodizing a little bath. This is just soft aluminum alloy.

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She used to love to go to the river boat Festival.

I curved this with a piece of pipe and a mallet, and stuck it on with some double-sided tape to see how it would look before I actually put in the screws.

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This is not the correct headlight. I just stuffed a little flashlight inside the thing and turned it on. I still have to finish the wiring.

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Ulu

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I have all the wiring done and this is the first photograph with all four LEDs lit.
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This is not going to light up the road but it will be OK for a bicycle lamp.

The battery pack is currently glued inside an Altoids box. Switch is an old computer turbo button.
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All that hot glue looks messy because I glued it down and then took it out and put it in again. It’s a test rig. It’s not supposed to win a trophy.
 
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Ulu

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So here it is lit up on my chair, before I actually screwed it to the bicycle. This is just a temporary rig to prove that the concept of ganging these charging circuits together in parallel will work.
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I have done this before with other LED lamps so I was pretty certain it would work but you never know until you test the exact circuitry because they all have different regulator arrangements.

If you want to learn about LED circuitry watch Big Clive on YouTube. He’s a fun guy and does lots of other interesting things but he is an LED lighting specialist and shows how the different voltage/charge regulator circuits are designed and operated.

Of course this didn’t require any advanced design work. All I did was put four batteries in parallel with four solar panels and four driver circuits.

The worst part was that I soldered the four batteries into the circuitry permanently. This is because battery holders on bicycles are notorious for jiggling loose, but also I didn’t wanna build a battery holder from scratch.

But these batteries have some kind of coating that does not allow them to be soldered easily, and you have to actually scrape the terminals before you can solder to them.
 

Ulu

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Thank you @GeePig

It only seems like a random selection of parts because you don’t see the huge pile of parts that I get to select from. I tend to save anything that might be interesting to a mechanic or a customizer.

I saved this and I know where I can get another for $6. This is stainless steel and has two of those same LED set ups in it.

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You are right when you say that things are fun when few people are doing it, and less so when it becomes popular to do that. My version is that I regularly spend some time checking out the local hardware stores, just wandering around them and seemingly rarely making a purchase - as there are a lot of bits and pieces on our farm that were once quite popular, and they are the bits I want to use rather than buying something. I started off with a ratty set of bikes, but by working on the parts for these bikes I now have six bikes in rideable forms. And that feels good.
 

Ulu

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You are right when you say that things are fun when few people are doing it, and less so when it becomes popular to do . . .

That’s more or less why I gave up working on computers. I don’t have to bother anymore, because half the world is doing such a bang-up job of it.

Just the opposite is true of building customs and specials. Interest had been waining for an awful long time until the current re-interest.

It seems like there are a lot of different auto manufacturers to choose from, until you realize that 98% of them have gone out of business. I imagine the same is true of 99% of bicycle manufacturers & motorcycle manufacturers as well.

And while I don’t have any great interest in the Russians or the Chinese, the Web has made it possible to see some very interesting foreign machinery that would otherwise be completely unknown here.

I get a great kick out of watching these amateur Russian fellows welding together strange tow-motors with tracks & lug wheels to haul them across the melting tundra. I get the same excitement watching these amateur Vietnamese boat builders on YouTube. They are creating some crazy stuff out of practically nothing.

We have a few guys doing the same thing out in the sandy & rocky desert southwest. Building Jeeps and buggy’s in off-road vehicles of every kind.

But a lot of them are professionals with large shops and large resources. Big YouTube channels with multiple cameraman and actual big city “production value”.

I often find it more fun to watch some guy building something on a sawhorse in his backyard. This place is most often just like that. ;)
 
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Ulu

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OK, so here is the LED stainless steel deck light assembly with the back off and the screws out of the circuit board. The circuit board has a nice switch with a waterproof rubber cover.
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This lamp only has two LEDs and one cell. I am hoping that I can get those two solar cells to charge my four batteries. I think it will work just fine but will take longer to charge. But I don’t believe that driver circuitry will be robust enough to charge four batteries, and prevent excessive discharge of them.

I have built a number of LED light fixtures for my aquarium projects. The main mode of failure on these things is excess heat on the driver circuit. It cooks the chip.

That’s why I used four regulator circuits inside the lamp. One for each diode, the way the Chinese engineers intended.

But even so, this is not a well ventilated assembly. Hopefully the thin reflector directs enough heat away from the LEDs and the circuitry behind them, provides great heat dissipation, and transfers it to the aluminum body. It’s been running for a while on my desk and it was stone cold, but warming up slowly.

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Ulu

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I just shut off the lamp. It ran for 7 1/2 hours and I was starting to get dim.

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This is a knob from a washing machine. I have a couple smaller ones like this and they’re going to wind up as bumper extensions on my front fork for the rubber baby buggy bumpers.
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This will avoid clashing and banging.

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Ulu

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My torture testing of the new lamp succeeded. It seems to recharge quickly (<2hrs) and run a long time (~8hrs) on a charge.

I did not know if adding a switch to this circuit would disable it from charging or (hopefully) just disable it from discharging.

I ended up breaking the ground circuit between the LED voltage regulator and the battery. This did the trick! . . . and the circuitry will charge the cells, whether the switch is on or off.

Knowledge is wonderful, because it removes fear and doubt. Progress occurs.

If this system runs eight hours on four cells, I clearly don’t need four. My legs don’t run for eight hours!

So my current plan is to cut the system back to two Ni-mh cells, one switch, and one solar cell.
 

Ulu

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It just happens that the existing screw holes line up between a solar cell capsule and the back of my lamp.
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I had to cut the capsule down a bit.
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I’m going to attempt to put the batteries in the lamp, the switch in the solar cell capsule, and charge the whole thing from one solar cell. If that doesn’t work I will figure out a way to put a USB charging port on it too.
 

Ulu

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This is the waterproof switch from the stainless steel deck lamp. I cut the circuitboard to remove the chips. I just need the switch and the rubber cover.
I’m going to make a square hole and I will epoxy this from inside the lamp.
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Ulu

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It turns out that that little switch was too flimsy for this application and I chose a better switch. This one will require a special knob or something and I have to fabricate that yet. Until then I cannot solder the last three wires and close up the lamp.

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I had to reverse the gooseneck so I can get this to work for shorter people in my family. This doesn’t look as clean but it looks more bizarre, so there is that.
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I still need to attach plaque to the head.
 

Tallbikeman

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Your bike build is really turning out well. I love futzing around with low voltage DC electronics. I only have a basic understanding of Ohm's law and use internet research for every thing else. Mostly that works but not always. Keep up the good work.
 

Ulu

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The last three wires are finally soldered and heat-shrunk.
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Somehow, two holes in the stainless steel cup aligned with two holes in the plastic solar cell housing. I used the screws that came with the solar cell.

A piece of bent welding wire works the switch, like a little crank. (Hey 70 KSI stuff man!)
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As it turns, it presses on this little plastic bridge that clicks the button on the microswitch.
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It rides in a bearing made of genuine Otay Fix-it-stick plumbers epoxy putty. ;)

Where it sticks through the back, I added a little red button from a ball point pen, secured with a tiny computer screw.
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