Today I will be showing you how to cheaply (less than 20$) make lights that should be compatible with around 90% of setups out there. They are basically LED ring lights that go around the king-pin of your RKP truck. Let’s begin!
Things you’ll need
(Click to expand for details)
Step down converter to 12V
This will convert your battery pack’s voltage down to 12V used for the LED lights. I use this one for 10s setups and lower.
LED ring lights
The outer diameter should be 40mm so that it doesn’t get in the way of the truck geometry, and inner diameter should be 10mm or larger so that it fits around the kingpin.
And found identically sized red ones from Ebay.
Any will do I think.
And scissors cutters to cut it
10mm metal drill bit
To cut the hole in the sheet metal
Probably stainless steel so that they don’t rust.
Wires and connectors
I used JST connectors, but XT-30 would also be a good choice.
Some kegs / metal clips
You know, what you use to keep pages together. You’ll see.
Value depends on the strength of your step-down converter. Mine is 18W, which is around 2.3A, so a 5A fuse would be perfect.
Step 1 – Measure and mark your cuts on the sheet metal
You want to mark the center point to drill, and a 40mm rectangle shape with the corners cut off that will attach to the lights.
Step 2 – Attempt to drill through the sheet metal
You want a HARD surface against the metal so that it doesn’t bend, but gets drilled instead. My fuckup basically made step 1 pointless.
Step 3 – Fix your shitty holes with a file
Step 4 – Retrace your cuts by just using the ring lights
Step 5 – Cut out a perfect circle
After that cut off a bit to make space for your lights’ wires
Step 6 – Flatten out your pieces
I used a tool meant for it, but you can just use a meat hammer or ask your mom to sit on it.
Step 7 – Glue the things
Mix up your epoxy equal parts or whatever’s written on the tube, apply it to the bottom of the ring lights, and then put your cut metal pieces on.
Then use metal clips to hold it down tight. To have the drilled hole be centered, I put the lights on my trucks, and adjusted it a bit until it looked right.
Step 8 – Let the epoxy harden
Step 9 – Solder connectors to the lights, and the converter box.
I used the pigtail approach to solder all the wires in parallel.
You might have to create an extension wire so that the front light reaches your box, wherever you put it in your board. The final thing should look like this:
I totally forgot to add fuses, which is very important because one of my converter boxes just exploded for no reason. You don’t want a short in your light wiring to kill your battery, so put in a fuse, god dammit!
Step 10 – assemble!
Take off the nut from your kingpin. Put on a washer. Put on the light. Put on another washer. Put on the nut. Tuck your wiring somehow so that it isn’t hanging loose.
Attach the step-down converter to your battery in parallel with your ESCs. It should be after your loop key or antispark. Enjoy!
Thanks for coming to my Ted talk.