Back when I was building models I found I needed a brighter workbench light. I built this light from a halogen track light.
It served me well and went on to light my work on pinball boards. Unfortunately after about 30 years the flexible arm has lost its tension and the light now droops. I decided to build a new light and started collecting parts. That’s when I saw this post by TimeBandit :
This inspired me to get to work on my bench lights. First I wanted to finish my halogen light then build another with the light panel. This is the new halogen light.
I again used an old track light for parts. The power supply is 12 volts - AC – 75 watts. I mounted it in a project enclosure box and wired in a switch. I added a thick aluminum plate to reinforce the mounting area. I used a microphone gooseneck to mount the track light head but I had to make an adaptor to mount it. It looks much better than my old light and works just as well.
Then I started on the light panel. I didn’t have the light panel before I started so I used a heavy duty project box. Again I used the track light power supply but I had to add in a bridge rectifier. And I also used the aluminum reinforcing plate and had to make an adaptor.
It turned out really well but to be honest it’s not as bright as I expected.
I also use one of those hobby lights (with magnifier) and I don’t think the light panel is much brighter. I don’t have a light meter to be sure but just looking at the work area I don’t see a big difference.
The down side with the halogen light is it causes a lot of glare. I have to turn it off to take pictures. The light panel spreads the light evenly – should be great for pictures. Also the halogen light gets very hot – you don’t want to touch the light head.
All in all I’m glad I made these new lights. Should be an improvement to the work area. And like TimeBandit said “Honestly, you are not working with enough light”.