[Editors note: This is the first in a new Apocalypse series, all about technology you might want to use in emergency situations. I know, it's kind of dumb, but it's fun to imagine this kind of stuff! Depending on it's reception, we may expand this series with guides on things like electricity generation, radio broadcasts, mesh networks, water gathering tools etc]
This guide will show you how to make a $2, super bright torch using a high powered LED and a battery. It's easy to assemble and requires no soldering.
- High powered 10W LED (These are usually found in garden lighting systems).
- Standard 9V battery
- A battery connector (or any two wires will do)
- A tactile button switch
- Black tape
- Wire strippers (or a knife)
- Sharpie (optional)
Step 1. Add the connector to the battery, bend the wires around and cut and strip them so they go slightly past the end of the battery. Make sure the red wire is a bit shorter.
Step 2. Use the previously cut red wire and strip both ends so there's about 1cm exposed wire showing
Step 3. Bend the legs of the switch so that the base can sit flat
Step 4. Now attach the red wires to the switch. I found the easiest way to get a good connection was to loop, then twist the wire.
Step 5. Now insert and twist the remaining ends of the red and black wires into the holes of the LED. Red should go to positive (+) and black to negative (-).
Step 6. Now that everything is connected, test your circuit!
Step 7. Make sure all the connections are secure, then wrap everything in black tape. You could also added extra finishing with the sharpie
Finished. You now have a super bright, mini torch which took five minutes to make, and cost less than $2. According to the LEDs datasheet, it puts out about 900 lumens, which is more than many expensive torches.