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Lighting Fixtures, Switch Panels and Meters

Running LED Bulbs in Series


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  #1  
Old 07-05-2019, 02:20:02 PM
George Andreasen George Andreasen is offline
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Default Running LED Bulbs in Series

Can't seem to find an answer on this one......

I have a Delco-Light 32 volt plant and several boxes of antique 32 bulbs....swell. The only problem is that once they burn out, modern replacements are kind of expensive so I'm looking to upgrade to LED bulbs instead. Longer life and insignificant current draw.......except 32 volt LED's are expensive too!

Now, there are 12 volt LED's available for RV's with a standard Edison base that are affordable. An old trick among the 32 volt crowd is to run three 12 volt incandescent bulbs in series, in order to demonstrate their light plant. But........would the same stunt work with LED bulbs?

I'm just not sure on this one, as a standard incandescents makes a dandy current limiter. But would an LED perform the same way?
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Old 07-05-2019, 03:30:42 PM
PLCtech PLCtech is offline
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Default Re: Running LED bulbs in series........

I'm not a light plant expert. I would think an LED driver of the 10-30V input wouldn't care what voltage it received from your light plant. But it wouldn't have the resistive properties to affect the current. You may need a resistor.
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Old 07-05-2019, 05:30:20 PM
Vanman Vanman is offline
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Default Re: Running LED bulbs in series........

I don't think I would consider LEDs to be an "upgrade". I think three 12 volt bulbs in series is perfect. They'll look great, and last a long time.
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Old 07-05-2019, 07:02:33 PM
pegasuspinto pegasuspinto is offline
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Default Re: Running LED Bulbs in Series

try 110 vac LED bulbs, at 32vdc. May work better then you expect.
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Old 07-05-2019, 09:32:47 PM
I like oldstuff I like oldstuff is offline
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Default Re: Running LED Bulbs in Series

In a word, no.

Incandescents are merely a wire that's heated.
LED's are a diode and each one requires a hot and a ground. They won't work in series.

So get some old school wire types and have fun with your toy. Automotive headlights, tail light bulbs or whatever. Hook em in series and have at it.
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Old 07-05-2019, 10:24:35 PM
pegasuspinto pegasuspinto is offline
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Default Re: Running LED Bulbs in Series

LED's work fine in series, it's how the new LED light bulbs are made.

The 120vac lights usually have a small switching power supply and multiple strings of LED lamps in series. Because it's a switching supply, they will work on AC or DC and often they will work on much lower voltages then designed.
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Old 07-05-2019, 10:25:51 PM
George Andreasen George Andreasen is offline
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Default Re: Running LED Bulbs in Series

Just got back to the forum right now........and in the meantime, got myself an education on LED circuitry. I found out that a DIMMABLE LED will work...sometimes. Depends on the brand, and since I can't see buying several different brands to see which one works I'll just stick with my incandescents.

Thank you for the replies and advice!
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Old 07-07-2019, 12:16:23 PM
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John Newman Jr. John Newman Jr. is offline
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Default Re: Running LED Bulbs in Series

32VDC LEDs at surplus prices - Cheap!
https://www.sciplus.com/assorted-cob-led-lights-61735-p
https://www.sciplus.com/cob-led-light-fixture-60516-p
https://www.sciplus.com/6-square-cob...-board-59423-p

There are more, but these will get you started.
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Old 07-07-2019, 12:34:50 PM
Frank DeWitt Frank DeWitt is offline
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Default Re: Running LED Bulbs in Series

6 of these in series would make a good vintage display. . https://www.ebay.com/itm/17394374078...&ul_noapp=true
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Old 07-08-2019, 09:55:35 AM
Tracy T Tracy T is offline
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Default Re: Running LED Bulbs in Series

I dont know exactly what you are looking for, but they make 12 vdc bulbs that have the same base as a household lamp. think portable droplight, you can get them at just about any auto parts store.
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Old 07-08-2019, 10:13:32 AM
gnucklehead gnucklehead is offline
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Default Re: Running LED Bulbs in Series

3 x 12V automotive LED's in series should work just fine on 32V, as long as you get the polarity right

If not, two might work without an additional resistor (or other current limiting device). Depends on how they are made, will handle a wider range than you might think.

Last edited by gnucklehead; 07-08-2019 at 11:11:00 AM.
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