Overhead lighting Print E-mail
Written by Vidar Fagerjord   
Saturday, 05 May 2012 19:37
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In this article, I'll show how I backlighted the overhead and how I made the pedestal flood light.



The FlyEngravity overhead I own does not have integrated backlighting, so I had to find my own solution. Which turned out to be flexible 12V LED ropes. The ones I got can be cut into 9cm pieces with 3 LED's. They are warm white, so they create a very nice effect. I am going to build a PWM dimmer (Pulse With Modulation) in order to be able to adjust the brightness.

The LED strips are mounted on plastic rails, two per section (the fuel panel is on the leftmost section). They are then connected in parallel.

The image does NOT do the lights justice! The gauges looks the most correct in the images. Except for a few areas, the backlighting is very uniform. The LED strips are mounted appr. 5cm (2 inches) from the backside of the panels.

I'll post more info and images on this when I start working on the AFT overhead.


The pedestal flood light


Ever wondered what that trapezoid opening in the aft part of the forward overhead is? It is the floodlight for the pedestal. I made a box in which I mounted a 12V LED spotlight. The box is actually made from an old floppy disc box. And I really mean floppy disc! 5 1/4" to be exact! From the old IBM AT era...

I mounted a motherboard standoff inside the box in order to mount the spotlight as close to horizontal as I could - in reference to the cockpit floor. The overhead is appr. 25 degrees from horizontal, so I mounted the light appr. 25 degrees from the bottom of the box. Should work just fine.

There was some light bleeding through the seams, but I fixed that with some liquid tape. That's great stuff!

I used the same stuff to seal the hole where the wires goes through the sidewall of the box.

And then it was time to try! And it worked great!

The only problem I encountered was that all the LED's created their own square of light. *D'OHH* The effect does not look too good, so I'll have to investigate options. Perhaps an opaque thingy? Time will show.

And now: do you see the light?

The overall effect is very good. The only issues are the 19 slightly different light patterns (there are 19 LED's on the spotlight PCB) and that the spotlight looks odd inside the opening. But the concept works, I'll just have to figure out how to solve the issues. Oh, well...

Last Updated on Saturday, 05 May 2012 20:15
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