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Survival and Preparations Long and short term survival and 'prepping'.

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  #1  
Old 12-21-2017, 1:50 PM
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Default Joule Thief anyone?

Anyone tinker with, or include Joule Thief(-based?) circuits in your stash equipment to get the most out of their batteries when the power drops for extended periods of time, or just me?


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K53beWYdIpc
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Old 12-21-2017, 1:58 PM
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The Joule Thief is a great design. But the idea of winding ferrite beads is enough to drive me insane.
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Old 12-21-2017, 2:11 PM
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Originally Posted by gorn5150 View Post
The Joule Thief is a great design. But the idea of winding ferrite beads is enough to drive me insane.
Then for you maybe buying some pre-wound, or salvaging some from CFLs that will die anyway might make you feel better?

If you check this out, you can see he half-azzes it, and notices no real difference :
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k9WzCnh_qS0

These types of devices, letting kids have longer use of batteries, with longer usable run times for each battery seem like something I desire to have around, if the street-lights are off.

I bought a few breadboards, and all other components to build some multi-LED setups for tinkering with, and it only ran me like $45, and I can build at least 10 of them, all THEORETICALLY with 10 LEDs ea... but the tinkering will still let me use the remainder of battery-juice when it is unusable with most other devices, in a testing (and power-out once tinkering is done), and post tinker... ILLUM-free environment.

EDIT: Just got some trim pots in 1k, 2k, and a 1k dial potentiometer to aid in testing and tinker.
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Old 12-22-2017, 2:48 PM
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Oh I have boxes of salvaged parts. But winding is one of my least favorite parts of electronic tinkering. I am teaching my grandkids how to make electronic things. They both know how to solder properly. My next step with them is using my hot air reworking station to do surface mount soldering. SMD is pretty interesting but can get frustrating too.

The kids are now adding micro LEDs to their model cars and planes.
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Old 12-23-2017, 7:45 AM
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Nope, personally Iíd just prefer to have a small portable USB solar panel and USB battery charger pack with good quality NiMH batteries.
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Old 12-23-2017, 11:22 AM
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Nope, personally I’d just prefer to have a small portable USB solar panel and USB battery charger pack with good quality NiMH batteries.
With solar at your fingertips, Lithium Ions might be a better option than higher conversion losses with NiMH?
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Old 12-23-2017, 3:50 PM
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With solar at your fingertips, Lithium Ions might be a better option than higher conversion losses with NiMH?
Lithium Ion is definatly the way to go over NiMH. I found a site that give discount codes for products sold on Amazon. I buy up all the Lithium Ion products they sell. Like the light bulb looking solar charged LED camp lights for $3 or $4 each. The battery packs can be added to a cheap Usb charging circuit and then put in conventional flashlights and/or radios.
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Old 12-23-2017, 4:44 PM
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That circuit is well over 40 years old now (I built a couple of them in the late 70's) and there are many much more efficient ways to accomplish the same these days.

And really, what a lot of work to catch the last 10% of energy in a battery. And it's only capable of driving a few mA into an LED. It's a cute novelty, but little more than that.
If you enjoy building electronics thingies it's a fun project but that's about it.


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Originally Posted by gorn5150 View Post
My next step with them is using my hot air reworking station to do surface mount soldering. SMD is pretty interesting but can get frustrating too.
I love SMD and hardly ever work with through-hole components anymore.
Here's a little switching regulator I built recently. 10 to 16+ volts in, 9 volts out at over 1 amp to run some 9 volt battery powered gear from a car battery. Very efficient and needs no heat sink like a linear regulator would.

I need to build a couple of 10v ones to modify the battery chargers on my little ham radios. Stupid charger uses a 10 volt wall wart... If it ran off 12 volts instead I could charge the batteries in the car also. I'll stuff one of these little regulators inside the charger to get the required 10 volts from 12+

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Old 12-23-2017, 9:45 PM
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With solar at your fingertips, Lithium Ions might be a better option than higher conversion losses with NiMH?


Yes youíre right if you are just staring to collect batteries or for adding more, but the lithium ion just started to get cost effective recently and Iíve got a sizable start on Eneloop and Amazon Basics NiMH which will keep working a few years out.
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  #10  
Old 12-24-2017, 6:33 AM
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I think I might revisit my USB Harbor Freight lights for mixing-in a Joule Thief variant when my Joule Thief components come in, after I test on the breadboards that just arrived.
https://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/....php?t=1012707

Hell, I have a coupon for a free light right now...
Maybe I'll build some boxes that do 18650 straight to USB female for the HF lights (5v USB was too much, and "heat-modified" reflective backing ), but will have to mark them as LED-power-only, not for USB 5v charging. Since my 18650 chargers charge to 4.15-4.2 max (depending on the charger used) this should help with the heat, but the HF lights are a box that holds heat under the plastic protective lens... Potentiometers and resistors en route, as are some different (ceramic and film) caps for increasing efficiency of the light and power consumption of the Joule Thieves I am about to begin. Testing begins when they all arrive in a few weeks.

I hate waiting for China products, but the price can't be beat! :/

Once testing is done, I might just save all those AA/AAA batts at ~1v, to use the last .3-.4v for days(?) of emergency lighting EACH, but I bought some plastic bags that would also allow for storage, in case the old bastages leak.

Since we are on the subject, I watched a vid. regarding carbon pots. I have some cermet pots en route, and was wondering:
What the lowest resistance on one of those I should be expecting to get on 1k cermet pots?

Do cermet pots last as long as the carbon&wiper pots? (With or without use?)
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  #11  
Old 12-24-2017, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Dubious_Beans View Post
I need to build a couple of 10v ones to modify the battery chargers on my little ham radios. Stupid charger uses a 10 volt wall wart... If it ran off 12 volts instead I could charge the batteries in the car also. I'll stuff one of these little regulators inside the charger to get the required 10 volts from 12+
I bought an adapter on Amazon that charges my Baofeng 10v radios with a USB connection. It works great and now I can charge them directly from my small solar panels.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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Old 12-24-2017, 12:24 PM
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Yeah, I saw those but haven't bought one yet. If something "bad" happens my options for coming up with 12 volts are far greater than for coming up with 5v.
I'll probably buy one sooner or later but am unlikely to ever use it.
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Old 12-27-2017, 6:44 AM
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Is it just me, or do you keep more than 2 1lb spools of solder on hand too?
(Sn/Pb is a PM too, in my book...)

Care to share your solder-source?

Has anyone done any cob, or high-intensity emergency/work lighting projects requiring an aluminum heat sink?
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Old 12-27-2017, 6:56 AM
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Sure, I've always got a couple lbs of wire solder on hand plus a couple syringes of paste solder for SMD.

Source? Usually Digikey

Yeah, I've used high power LED's that need a heatsink. Get the heatsinks at Digikey also.
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Old 12-30-2017, 3:09 AM
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Not tea-bag lighting powered from a single 1.5v AA.

One resistor, one ferrite torroid core, one transistor, one AA battery box holder, (2 breadboards,) a bit of copper wire/jumpers, one AA batt, and some LEDs.

Some 'gator clips were used to connect the torroid-transformer and batt. holder, but they could be soldered. Torroid wound with a solid-copper Cat5 pair in about 2 minutes, not soldered for the center-tap, but just wrapped bare-copper to connect the center-tap, for now. Resistor for this pic was a free power-supply pull from a tear-down I did in prep. for the LED arrival. LEDs are all in parallel, and do not seem to really drop in intensity as more are added. Torroid-core was a pull from the same power supply.

Total cost of this is about $8.84, mainly as most of this was sourced and purchased from the US to speed arrival times, aside from the LEDs and the battery boxes.
About $1.31 w/out the breadboards, and not counting the batt.

I got some of the cheapest US source breadboards I could source from the US, and I would recommend against this, as I am now awaiting some higher-end breadboards (only about $9-10 ea, which are marked as shipped, right now) due to the lack of kosher connections on these. The crap-jumpers that came with them have very high resistance and are terrible too.

Just for my reference, based on BigClive's diagram, but simplified for my monkey-brain:

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Old 12-30-2017, 8:46 AM
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Cute.

Next time you are ordering stuff, pick up a couple of small n-channel mosfets and try substituting one for the 2n3904. The Vce(sat) on the bipolar transistor limits both the efficiency and minimum operating voltage of that circuit (you're throwing away about 0.3v)

I'd probably try a 2n7002 or something similar.
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Old 12-30-2017, 7:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Dubious_Beans View Post
Cute.

Next time you are ordering stuff, pick up a couple of small n-channel mosfets and try substituting one for the 2n3904. The Vce(sat) on the bipolar transistor limits both the efficiency and minimum operating voltage of that circuit (you're throwing away about 0.3v)

I'd probably try a 2n7002 or something similar.
Thanks for the info on the 2N7002 mosfet, I originally thought you were referencing another transistor.

Knowing very little about electronics, other than owning a Radio Shack kit when I was a kid, a few cap replacements years ago, and some basic circuit modification/modding, I just picked up 2 types of referenced transistors from BigClive's (coiner of the term) Authentic Joule Thief video.
The one I am using in the photo is a 2N2222's, as the 2N3904's haven't arrived from China yet. Honestly, I have no clue what the difference is, and just bought some of what BigClive referenced for tinkering.

Would a small n-channel mosfet continue to go as low in batt.-voltage as a transistor-based joule thief?
I looked at the a spec sheet for the 2N7002, don't know even what I am looking at, and it is supposedly... in English.
Looks like, as far as I can tell, this would pull a constant 370mW?

RE-EDIT: Wow those 2N7002's are SMD packages only. Looks like I am going to solder solid copper to my first surface mount component, just to get her plugged into the breadboard.
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Old 12-31-2017, 11:40 AM
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RE-EDIT: Wow those 2N7002's are SMD packages only. Looks like I am going to solder solid copper to my first surface mount component, just to get her plugged into the breadboard.
I would suggest getting a hot air reworking station and some solder paste if you are going to be messing with SMD. First time I used that combo I was amazed when the solder paste beaded up and sucked the component onto the pads.
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Old 12-31-2017, 7:29 PM
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I would suggest getting a hot air reworking station and some solder paste if you are going to be messing with SMD. First time I used that combo I was amazed when the solder paste beaded up and sucked the component onto the pads.
This is the only SMD I have interest in.

I just received my 1st breadboards this month, and a hot air station is a bit out of the ball-park for one SMD component. I DID however bring down the magnifying glass for the 1st time ever on my helping hands when trying to get some of the transformers soldered.

Hell, now you got me thinking I have an eCig that shorted out, and the only thing whack on that was an ejuice-shorted mosfet, of the SMD variety, but I have her sister, same model I could read that part number from... hmmm. It's an $80-$90 mod, so fixing for pennies sounds good. Where is that solder-wick order from China when you need it...?

You guys are horrible people. Now I just keep buying more stuff, but luckily it's CHEAP!
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Old 12-31-2017, 7:43 PM
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Buy a solar array and a charger.
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Old 12-31-2017, 10:08 PM
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Buy a solar array and a charger.
My thought is how do you prevent a solar array from walking away from your backyard if people have drones, and you work full-time?

That is not really the point, as everyone has a car charger for 12v systems. "MAKING" a solar charger might be the end-game, and repairing it might also be included in the stream.

Solar might be my next learning project... but I do need to stock up on some more LSD AA and AAA's anyway, and maybe a few charge options for those too.

Edited Addendum: Buy >$8 breadboards, you will be happy you did. Alternatively, the first cheap breadboards you were unhappy you bought might make for great alignment when soldering pins (or rows of pins) to components, as a jig so to speak...
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Old 01-01-2018, 1:44 PM
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I thought hot air rework stations were out there too. Until I got one for under $30 on Amazon with a discount code. The thing is amazing. Now I'm going to grab one of those cheapo variable DC supplies.
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Old 01-01-2018, 6:54 PM
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Not being a stranger to inexpensive devices that get the job done, I do frequently purchase off-brand, or no brand devices.

Right now I am running a no-name, generic SATA3 PCI-Ex (old Phenom board w/out SATA3 ports, just SATA2) with an Asmedia 106x (1061, I think) controller I was mis-shipped from China (and refunded) when ordering a USB3 controller PCI-Ex card, and I haven't had one issue with it. I am currently using a Yihua 939D station, my first non-Radio-Shack iron with a power station between the iron and the wall, again w/out issue.

$30, or even $75 might be worth it for me, IF the need ever arises, but it is just not something I need right now.

For future reference, what model (or URL to said item) hot air station did you get, if you don't mind my asking (and people slamming it here )?
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Old 01-01-2018, 7:06 PM
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Originally Posted by the86d View Post
Then for you maybe buying some pre-wound, or salvaging some from CFLs that will die anyway might make you feel better?

If you check this out, you can see he half-azzes it, and notices no real difference :
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k9WzCnh_qS0

These types of devices, letting kids have longer use of batteries, with longer usable run times for each battery seem like something I desire to have around, if the street-lights are off.

I bought a few breadboards, and all other components to build some multi-LED setups for tinkering with, and it only ran me like $45, and I can build at least 10 of them, all THEORETICALLY with 10 LEDs ea... but the tinkering will still let me use the remainder of battery-juice when it is unusable with most other devices, in a testing (and power-out once tinkering is done), and post tinker... ILLUM-free environment.

EDIT: Just got some trim pots in 1k, 2k, and a 1k dial potentiometer to aid in testing and tinker.
i dont have soldering skills. i'd like something premade, would be nice if i could put 4 AA's into one of those 4pack thingies and connect that to a thief to power a couple/few LED's plugged into it
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Old 01-01-2018, 9:00 PM
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i dont have soldering skills. i'd like something premade, would be nice if i could put 4 AA's into one of those 4pack thingies and connect that to a thief to power a couple/few LED's plugged into it
How to properly solder, it's pretty simple, if I can do it...:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VxMV6wGS3NY


There are a few vids of people in 3rd world countries messing with LED bulbs, running similar setups after they learn to solder... only the most basic is needed in the game I am playing, and I learned on my own, by doing, just like Linux, Windows, Networking, hardware, etc.

I understand that learning new things keep the brain sharper than those who get Alzheimers. Nothing wrong with trial and error with regards to learning, and if you can run about 1/3-1/2 the light of a 13watt LED from a breadboard, w/no soldering, with one AA for 8+ hours, it might be worth it.

I haven't done the math with lower resistors required for these bright-white LEDs (only tested draw, and the capacitor for the lady's transformer she wound herself, by doing, as the white LEDs require lower resistance, or a capacitor), but I understand with LED minimal lighting (night-light illum. equiv) joule thieves can go for WEEKS on a single AA, not to mention what you can get out of a C, or a D... and running multiple LEDs in parallel does not seem to effect brightness-each. Joule thieves were initially run on a red, or green LED, which require a lower voltage, but running at higher voltage bright white LEDs requires more juice, so you have to drop the resistance, and maybe drop in a capacitor (like on my lady's transformer she wound, it required it, unless she wanted to hold the resistors to light it up, effectively becoming a capacitor herself?). I too am learning a bit as I go, and this is a CHEAP project, helping me to tinker a bit for better output.

I really know very little, and learned to solder by doing it replacing caps on motherboards for virtually free hardware when I was a broke fool, paying 2 child care fees.

I learn a lot from youtube videos, and applying, which is also how I dropped a lower parts kit in my AR, "Youtube instruction and doing"=Learning.

A few packs of AA's, or some NiMH batts, and weeks of night-time lighting, precharged, and no "San Diego lights-out at home for weeks" for me...
WEEKS of power, and no solar panels to get stolen.
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Old 01-02-2018, 12:19 PM
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For future reference, what model (or URL to said item) hot air station did you get, if you don't mind my asking (and people slamming it here )?
This is the one I bought. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Nothing fancy but it sure works good.
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Old 01-03-2018, 1:57 AM
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Back on Joule Thief circuts, it seems they draw less juice than running 3v LEDs, WAY less... and even though less bright than a full 3v (2x~1.5AA/AAA), with a capacitor in the circuit it was even less draw, and brought the illum. up some. Adding more LEDs did not seem to decrease intensity of any of the LEDs in parallel, unlike parallel LEDs straight-piped to 3v.

I can't find my note-pad (scratch-paper I was writing on) so I will have to re-test... and post actual numbers, but variables tend to be 1) the transistor used, 2) resistor to the transistor base, 3) and the coil, and 4) capacitor in the mix somewhere, in my testing across the resistor extending the wave-form of the time the LED is lit.
5?) I will have to test w/ a resistor before or after coil, as I have seen circuit diagrams where the resistor is before one leg that goes to the transistor, and some before the coil, just before the transistor.

I understand all 4(/5?) might be a factor in how low the voltage can go on the battery .

Granted, I am not using the traditional Joule Thief, as I am using White LEDs, and they have a forward voltage of ~3.2-3.3v, rather than green or red LEDs at ~2.2-2.5v, so I have to drop the resistance a bit (or throw a cap across the resistor, or they don't light up. It didn't occur to me, and some coils I was trying worked w/ certain resistance, and some did not. My lady would her own, and when she touched the resistor on both legs it lit hers up, and depending on pressure used, it lit more, so that is when I started testing with caps, as she was being the catalyst for the capacitance-testing.

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This is the one I bought. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Nothing fancy but it sure works good.
Since you are doing SMD rework, I got some eBay cheapie MARK ESD-15 tweezers as just something to tuck cotton under my eCig coils, but they are nice and thick, and grip well. I thought I'd buy some variants, and got some similar product, and they were thin and cheap.

I am curious as to what tweezers you use with SMD? Bent nose?
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Old 01-03-2018, 12:21 PM
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I have about a dozen pair of tweezers. I like the bent nose (using your name for them, not sure what the real name is) tweezers for SMD parts. When I first got into SMD I did not realize there is a huge difference in LED size. I bought a batch that are half the size of a grain of salt. Horrible way to start. But that allowed me to justify one of those USB microscopes that attache to smartphones. Now that thing has been handy.
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Old 01-03-2018, 1:16 PM
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I like plain old straight, pointy tweezers. Non-magnetic stainless is best. Some steel tweezers take on a little "natural" magnetization and some parts will want to stick to them. It sucks when you can't let go of that 0603 diode you just picked up.

Here's my favorite tweezers with a freshly soldered lighting control board.


It's not brain surgery. Buy a bunch of different types and see what suits you best.
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Old 01-04-2018, 4:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dubious_Beans View Post
...Here's my favorite tweezers with a freshly soldered lighting control board.


It's not brain surgery. Buy a bunch of different types and see what suits you best.
Nice!

Just got the eBay Bucks kick-back ... so I got some more LEDs. If you aren't signed up, you all should utilize this "feature" if you buy from eBay. They kick back like 1% from all eBay purchases (I think like 10% for qualifying purchases over $50), which can be rolled into MOAR shtuff for virtually free (time not included, so this is why I mention virtually)... they drop eBay denero every 3 months. If you buy a lot from eBay, jump on this train, 'tis gratis.

Even my eBay side hustle profits have been dropping into more tinkering and testing components for the breadboards.
Again, you guys are horrible.
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Old 01-09-2018, 5:33 AM
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For those who posted in this thread, can you recommend an electronics forum, similar to Calguns with broken down, catigorized sections?
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Old 01-14-2018, 3:47 PM
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Here is one of the deals I talked about. Free to join this group and you can get killer deals. https://www.vipon.com/product/3746181?from=index_0
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Old 01-15-2018, 4:32 AM
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Hell, for ~$25, it'd be worth it just to clench wire shrink-tubing...

EDIT: For my own reference/log: Certain turn ratios of these seem to increase efficiency:
"The ratio is 8:20 or 4:10, or 40%." 40+% on the transistor base-side seems best... verified on my end after testing some DIY torroid winding and testing.
http://cs.yrex.com/ke3fl/htm/JouleThief/JouleThief.htm

So Gorn, when my 2n7002's come in (should be in any day now, and I have breakout boards en route too... the headers have already arrived), just drop it in place of the 2n2222, using the gate in place of the base, drain for the emitter, and source for the collector, or do I have drain and source backwards (again new to anything that is really just a non-swapie/solderie... or the most basic circuits [AKA 3v to a light, w/maybe a switch or adding a trim-pot thrown in there])?

I might have to "DEAD-BUG" solder to some headers for the breadboard until the breakout boards arrive...
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Old 01-20-2018, 6:12 AM
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Hey Gorn, these 2n7002 things are TINY!!!

Managed to get one soldered to some header pins with some jumper wires... have to pull the specs and readjust where wires are plugged in as the gate is not the center pin (in relation to the other two, like a transistor)...
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Old 01-20-2018, 12:14 PM
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Yeah they are. My old eyes bleed when I mess with surface mount stuff. I bought a couple of those computer USB microscope setups to use when doing surface mount. Makes a huge difference.

But as big of a pain that they are, they sure are fun to make things with.
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Old 01-25-2018, 4:17 AM
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Okay, NOW I am looking to step my game here...

Maybe some surface mount (copper-backed) 4-LED 3v flashlight led PCBs screwed into an AMD/Intel heatsink. Off to eBay for some 3v CREE Cool White LEDs with a copper-backed PCBs.
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Old 02-02-2018, 4:02 AM
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Gorn, I can't seem to find any circuit diagrams to see how to wire these 2n7002's for <5v input.

I am not sure if I fried the 2n7002 soldering it (with bond wires, as it is so small, due to the .1" header spacing) to breadboard header pins, or if I am wiring it wrong. Help a brother out? The pins don't correspond to a standard transistor pin-out, and since I am new to 'fets I am at a loss. Maybe the terms I am looking for are wrong, but Google searches such as ".5v led 2n7002", or "1.5v led 2n7002" (both no quotes) only list large circuit diagrams and voltages greater than 1.5v. I do have plenty of 2n7002's now, so if I fried this one no big deal, but I can't find info I am looking via the Google.

Can you throw me a bone, at least pointing me in the right direction here?
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Old 02-02-2018, 6:26 AM
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What's the brand? Where did you get them? What's the data sheet say?
The data sheet is your best friend.
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Old 02-02-2018, 6:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dubious_Beans View Post
What's the brand? Where did you get them? What's the data sheet say?
The data sheet is your best friend.
2N7002's straight out of China...



My problem is that I don't know if I need the resistor, the coil, etc.
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Old 02-03-2018, 12:25 PM
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It should work just like the non smd version. If you can find the data sheet for it that should confirm it is good to go. Google smd 2N7002 and you will find a bunch of data sheets. All that I found show no minimum voltage and a 60v top.
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