Hack A Cheap Lamp Into A Battery-Powered Camping Light

Specialty camping lamps are freely available in most hardware stores and can also be picked up pretty cheaply -- but where's the fun in that? It's far more satisfying to build your own DIY creation out of an electric-powered lamp. An IKEA Hackers reader shows how it's done...

"I want to share with you a simple invention I made to have a camping Jansjo," IKEA Hackers reader Gianluca Giangreco explains. "I also have a LED flashlight powered by the same batteries, but only one, and it is tricky to place it conveniently. Furthermore, the flashlight is cold white, instead of the beautiful Jansjo warm white light."

To make Gianluca's camping light, you'll need the aforementioned IKEA Jansjo lamp ($24.99), a Li-ion battery, socket and wire.

Here's Giangreco on how he created his camping Jansjo:

"At home I have three JANSJO lamps. They are powered by a switching power supply. Within the head, close to the LED chip, the current is adjusted with a special IC (I have opened one head, but I do not remember: I think there are two 340mA regulators in parallel for a total of 680mA) and a voltage of 3.4 V is enough to obtain the maximum intensity.

"Having some Lithium cylindrical 3.7V nominal (3 ~ 4.2V according to the actual state of charge) 2.4 Ah cells salvaged from old laptops battery packs (I also use that cells for the flashlight, etc., and charge them with a specific Li-ion charger Soshine SC-S1 V3) I thought it might be suitable for JANSJO.

"So I connected a small piece of red and black wire to female speaker connector and the other two ends to a cell, holding them by a slice of bicycle inner tube (anyone who repairs bicycles has some of them to give). The night between the 14th and the 15th of August we had four hours of great lighting at about no cost in the gazebo at the beach!

"Ah ... I had also brought the gas lamp, but the light was ridiculous compared to a single JANSJO–! Have a good camping!"

As always, extreme caution is advised when it comes to tinkering around with electrical equipment -- you should only attempt something like this if you have extensive experience.

[Via Ikea Hackers]


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