EL Tape Usage - HeliFreak
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Old 11-15-2012, 09:47 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default EL Tape Usage

I've been researching the feasibility of using EL tape for a night rig. It's certainly more expensive than LEDs, but the end result will likely be amazing. Is there anyone with EL experience with this?
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Old 11-15-2012, 07:16 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I've worked with it, fun stuff. The big hurdle is getting a driver that has a high enough frequency. I dont have a meter to measure, but the ones I'm using are rated for 2000hz. The higher the better up to a point.

El wires and el panels are capacitors, they get brighter the more you raise their AC supply voltage/frequency, but only up to a point. I understand that changing the frequency does alter the color output but only slightly.

Heres a good thread on the subject: https://www.helifreak.com/showthread.php?t=403394

Be careful working with the stuff, it can give a nasty little shock. Ask me how I know.

I just wish I had a source for those little press to fit connectors. Allelectronics.com used to include them with el strips, but last time I checked they only had small el panels.
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Old 11-16-2012, 03:10 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Here is the DX7 I got from you bostonk with an EL panel with a on/off toggle switch. A heli all done up with EL panels and strips would look pretty cool.
Right on Kavic about the shocks , woke me up a little . The inverter I used was pretty big, I had to really cram it in there but nothing a heli couldn't carry. I got the panel from Glowhut but yeah I don't think they sell the panel/strip connectors either. I have a big piece left over from what I cut for the Tx that I would like to use on something but know idea how to power it without some kind of connector plug?

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Old 11-16-2012, 11:05 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Heres some of the best off the shelf drivers that I know of.

http://www.glowire.com/drivers.htm

If you can manage a 9v power supply the F2 driver is ideal. Without too much trouble it can be de-shelled and will easily power a canopy striped up with el ribbon. For anything larger than a 450 you might want to use 2. I'm thinking a small 3s LiFe pack would be perfect for the job. The F2 driver will handle a bit of over voltage, I cranked mine up to 11.5v once. The panels did get a bit brighter.

Remember to never power up an el driver without an el wire/panel attached, it will fry rather quickly.

Also look out for any driver than has been potted (filled with plastic resin). They are bulky and add too much weight IMHO.
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