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How to Build Your Own LED Ring Light


I had some stuff lying around as well as saw some parts as I was out and thought this would be fun to make. I have around $20 invested in parts. On eBay I saw ring lights for anywhere around $40 on up, so this will save you money and it was fun to make.

Step 1: Materials

The materials list is fairly easy to get between Radio Shack, Advanced Auto Parts and Home Depot. The lights I found at Advanced Auto Parts — they are flexible with adhesive and they package it with a test button and power supply! I got a 3 inch PVC pipe piece and wing bolts at Home Depot. The button in the packaging didn’t stay on so I went to Radioshack and got a cool toggle.

Step 2: Deshineification

The white PVC is too reflective so I lined it with black electrical tape. I also put the lights in at this point so I could see where I needed to tape exactly. I made sure to make it so the wires ran out the back. At this point after every step I test the lights to make sure I didn’t knock anything loose.

Step 3: Wing It

Drill 3 holes in a triangle. Make sure you pick a bit that allows for a decently tight threading so it doesn’t slip. I drilled mine towards the back. If you line them up right with good tightness you can use it to focus still by attaching it to the focus ring. Once again just to save on headaches I would test it again. Side note make sure if you get wing nuts from Home Depot that they are all the same size because their bins were apparently mixed a bit.

Step 4: The Ole Switch-a-Roo

Swapping the switches is easy. I just cut the wires off and twisted them onto the new one and once they were working I soldered it into place.

Step 5: The Shortening

The easiest thing you can do is just clip it one wire at a time then twist the ends together and make sure it works. Once its good hit it with a little solder and tape it up. I taped the power supply onto the ring at this point with the switch. Tape everything up give it a test and you are good for testing!

Step 6: Finished Product and Test Shots

About the author: Jon Alexander considers himself a camera hacker. He pushes the boundaries of what his equipment is suppose to do and often with his own creations.