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joshlisa
11-06-2008, 03:15 AM
Looking for some help bypassing another type of controller. The string is LED's with a little plastic housing. The string is only in two channels. Red / Green and Orange / Blue. The string plugs into 240 volt. No transformer. I will attach some pictures of the open controller. I have two of these and was also wondering if I could run both of these sets of a standard SSROZ? I can bypass all me other controllers but these are diffrent......HELP PLEASE.
Thanks in advance.
Josh:confused::confused:

toodle_pipsky
11-06-2008, 03:45 AM
I'm no expert - so someone correct me if I'm wrong - if they plug into the mains, all you'd need to do is put a bridge rectifier in there (turn AC into DC) and if you're using SSRs change the triac resistor to 330R.

However, someone might have a nifty way of using the existing controller by modifying it.

joshlisa
11-06-2008, 03:50 AM
Quick on the draw mate. I have a few SSR's set up with 330's on board so that is no problem but if I can use the existing parts that would be great, If not the bridge rec may be the way to go. Any idea of cost on those as I have never gone looking for them?
I take it there would be be no problem if I wanted to run both sets off the same SSR (4 Channels). Use one Bridge......?
Thanks mate.
Josh

TimW
11-06-2008, 04:30 AM
Whoa....Easy Tiger!!!!

That round thing with the windings on it... 4 wires coming off to the board, right?

If so, I'm guessing a step down transformer... in which case the voltage going to the cct is not going to be 240V. probably closer to 24... (depends on the turns ratio)

Yes.. its Mr Careful again.... can we have a bit more of a think about this one pls?

Tim

toodle_pipsky
11-06-2008, 04:39 AM
There you go - quick draw McGraw picked that up. Told you I was no expert!

Like I said - someone might have a way of bypassing/using what's there.

TimW
11-06-2008, 04:56 AM
TP.. the bridge rectifier bit is right. Just don't bang 240v on the end yet (or ever??)!

I don't think led strings would ever have that voltage on them rectified or not -it would be like putting 339V DC across the string... My hair standing on end... the delorian.. etc etc..

I'm no expert.. but those SCR/ Fet thingys don't look like the 339V type either... bit on the small side??

Ah... mr Careful again...

toodle_pipsky
11-06-2008, 05:09 AM
. . . . The string plugs into 240 volt. No transformer. . . . .

Well there you go - not all lights have a wall wart. I is learn :) I kinda thought it was weird, but then nothing surprises me anymore, and should know by now assume nothing. Thank you mr careful, you're a good one to have around!

PS - back to the learned peoples . . . . .

joshlisa
11-06-2008, 07:11 AM
Tim.
Thanks for the reply. If I get this right, The 240V goes to the round thingy(technical) . From the round thingy that is 24V give or take. Then you put in the bridge, then to the SSR. Would one of the round things power two strings or should I keep two of them for the two strings? Thanks for the help so far guys.
I try not to muck around with this 240V stuff. If you cant see it or smell it...well....
Josh

TimW
11-06-2008, 07:31 AM
Tim.
Thanks for the reply. If I get this right, The 240V goes to the round thingy(technical) . From the round thingy that is 24V give or take. Then you put in the bridge, then to the SSR. Would one of the round things power two strings or should I keep two of them for the two strings? Thanks for the help so far guys.
I try not to muck around with this 240V stuff. If you cant see it or smell it...well....
Josh

Can't tell from the pics what the lower voltage is Josh... best thing would be to measure it to be sure. BUT - You are playing with 240V here. Is it possible to get someone to help you measure it? I'm with you on the healthy respect for mains electricity. Don't mess with it.

The scenario you want is: (lower voltage hopefully) AC -> SSR -> Bridge rectifier (turns into DC)-> LED.

You put the BR in between the ssr and the leds... because the SSR wants to switch AC not DC.

As you probably know.. couple of things with the leds... they are quite sensitive to being connected the wrong way round... so it would help to know the polarity of the strings first.

Do you have any 24v plugpack transformers around from other strings?
(in the safe world we'd ditch the round thingys altogether I think!...)


And a multimeter?

Another clue that would help us without going down the zappy route is to figure out how many leds are in the string in series? can you figure that from the lights?
Tim

Tim

wjohn
11-06-2008, 09:49 AM
I am with Tim on this one,

That round thing looks like a small torrid, and there are clearly two sets of windings.

24VAC, no way to tell, however the first place to look is the big black thingy on the right hand side of the board, I'd wager that it is a filter Cap after the 4 diode full wave bridge rectifier.

without even measuring the voltage, have a look athe the rating on the Filter cap. I'd suggest that it will be 35V or 50 V, and 220uF or maybe 100uF in value. Just a guess.

inspection is less lethal than measuring the voltage,

With a more detailed inspection, I'd suggest that you will be able to run the strings off a lower voltage and not let out any magic smoke.

TimW
11-06-2008, 10:44 AM
Good idea John (I was heading down the 'count the leds to guess the voltage' route but I like the cap rating guide as a sanity test. Clever.)

One other thing we must remember to have a discussion on in all this is the 'resistor' question. Just cause we don't see any resistors on the outbound side of the SSR/Fets going to the LEDS doesn't mean some currentl limiting resistors would be a bad idea....

first things first... check the caps and count how many leds in a series. Then we should be able to figure out how to drive them and put the controller in the bin...(and Mr Careful sleeps better...)


(unless you want to salvage those 4 diodes... they make one bridge rectifier already!)

joshlisa
11-07-2008, 12:45 AM
I have been playing in the shed today. I have managed to get all my LED's Working but the lights I am asking about here. I have counted the string. 15 LED's of each colour. That makes two channels of 30 LED's. I will just let that go for the moment. I put the multi across the output channels. Well I will be stuffed. 184V DC output. I was wondering why the output cable to the LED's was so heavy. At least as thick as the input. Now taking all that into account. Any new ideas on bypassing the 8 function controller? If I cant do it I will just plug it into one of my modded power boards and use them that way. While I want to controll these from the computer, these do have a handy feature. A memory. When set they stay on the flash pattern you set them on, even when turned off and back on hours later.
Thanks for the help so far....
Josh

P. Short
11-07-2008, 12:58 AM
From some discussions over in planetchristmas.com it appears that LED manufacturers are sometimes using diodes and caps to form voltage doublers. I haven't been following this thread closely enough to figure out if this is the case here, but if it is, it may take a bit of cleverness to get those LEDs to work in hacked configurations.

TimW
11-07-2008, 01:16 AM
Where were you measuring the voltage? across 2 of the output pins or the transformer?

30 leds at ,say, 3v might drop drop 90V but not 180 (and 3v would be colour dependent... do both colours have the same number of leds in the string?)

It would mean that 1 led dies O/C they all die of course.

As to running that from ssr - starting to get complicated!

joshlisa
11-07-2008, 01:32 AM
Complicated is not the word I would use but yes the dream is fadeing. The LED's are 15 of each colour. Two colours per string. The total count is 60 LED's. The controller has three wires comming out. A common and two controll channels. This is where I measured the output at 184V DC. The LED's do have a plastic housing that looks like a finger and lights up with a housing on the base end. Could there be a little something hideing in there???? It is looking like I will just have to controll these as On/Off only.
Josh

omzig
11-07-2008, 09:41 AM
I'd suggest that you will be able to run the strings off a lower voltage and not let out any magic smoke.Or worse yet, tragic smoke (the burning flesh kind).

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