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Jonathan_hodgkins's avatar

How can I make solar powered lights for a table?

Asked by Jonathan_hodgkins (387 points ) July 5th, 2011

My new apartment has rooftop access that I would love to take advantage of. My idea is obtain a glasstop outdoor table and adhere small solar panels underneath the glass. These panels would be wired to either LEDs or white christmas lights that could be turned on at night after the solar panels have charged the batteries. I have limited background in electronics and solar cells. What do I need to be cognizant of when tackling the project? Any helpful hints, pointers or reference material that I should know or be consulting?

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4 Answers

WasCy's avatar

I’d head over to Instructables.com for ideas on a project such as that. They’ll have photos, step by step instructions, and lists of tips and caveats for all sorts of things like that.

Here’s a result of a search for solar powered lights there to get you started.

dabbler's avatar

Sounds like fun!
You might get the best mileage using ready-mades and adapting them to your table.
There are lots of self-contained solar-cell-plus-lights units out there, usually made for footpaths or patios, and lots of them will turn on automatically at night.

incendiary_dan's avatar

You could take solar walkway/garden lights off of the spike they usually come on, and put that light and solar cell component into a jar (preferably frosted glass). Leave it near the window in the day time, then move it where you need it at night.

RareDenver's avatar

I don’t have any advice but it sounds like a cool project, please post pictures here of your finished results, I would love to see.

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