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Author Topic: Solar Powered Lighting  (Read 1406 times)

Offline ImWolf

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Solar Powered Lighting
« on: December 07, 2012, 06:04:30 pm »
Hey kiddies.....   the lit models I previously built all ran off batteries, which is cool since the model is self contained, but not cool because you have to leave some sort of well concealed access to the battery pack.

While thinking about going to an adapter to power the lighting system, I'm not so hot on that method just because you're stuck with your model near an outlet....   remember life before mobile phones? (I do).

Then I look down at my counter and there sits my calculator....    with the little solar panel powering it! Then I start looking around on the net and there are tons of options when it comes to solar power....   from micro to macro.

I'm going to keep looking around, but I wanted to ask you all if any of you have either used or seen an example of a solar system to light up a model....   weather it was in the base or actually had panels on the model itself so you could hang it up near a light source and let it charge.

Appreciate your input.....
« Last Edit: December 07, 2012, 06:06:21 pm by ImWolf »
Just think of what my life might be.....   In a world like I have seen!

Offline MattA

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Re: Solar Powered Lighting
« Reply #1 on: December 07, 2012, 11:28:04 pm »
If you really want to leave a battery pack in it, you could use some rechargeable batteries or use a rechargeable battery pack in it.  Then you'd only have to plug it in to charge it.  That may be an option as well...
Builder of all things StarShip...

Offline ImWolf

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Re: Solar Powered Lighting
« Reply #2 on: December 08, 2012, 03:52:20 pm »
Thanks for the feedback Ernest....   when the idea of using solar power first occurred to me I thought I was thinking out of the box. Then I quickly realized that someone else must have already found an acceptable method.

Even though the little panel on my calculator is only about .5" x 1.3" and has been charging a 1.5V battery for many years, it sure would be difficult to put some of these panels on a model and keep the project appearing realistic. (unless it's a space station as you noted).

What I seek in the end is to have a self contained power supply which is incorporated into the build so that the model is not strapped to a wall....  some models will be better suited to allow this than others I imagine. Recall the original Klingon ship where you simply slid the impulse engine cover back to expose the battery pack? This didn't take away from the model at all. On the other hand though, infrared remote technology was not around just yet so you also had that damn toggle switch hanging off the aft end. Not exactly what the studio model or Jefferies sketches included......    :b

With the original Enterprise you would have to remove the bottom half of the secondary hull to access the batteries...  which is just unacceptable after you've spent so much time trying to hide seams and build something that looks good.

Then there was the Lief Ericson where they put the battery pack into the display stand. As a kid that wanted to play "spaceships" I didn't like the idea of flying a display stand around in my hand so I omitted the lighting on that model.

Oh well, electronics and such have come a long way since those early lighting kits....   and you've given me some things to think about. Thanks.
Just think of what my life might be.....   In a world like I have seen!

Offline ImWolf

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« Reply #3 on: December 08, 2012, 11:09:40 pm »
Hey Ernest.....   we are all engineers to some degree.....   but you are obviously several classes ahead of me!

Perhaps this Q doesn't belong in this area of the forum, but what do your prefer to use for lighting/powering your builds?

(If you need some Grain'o'wheat bulbs I think I have some here somewhere....     :b)
Just think of what my life might be.....   In a world like I have seen!

 




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