Author Topic: pickup camper shell astro lighting...  (Read 2643 times)

John Pierce

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pickup camper shell astro lighting...
« on: March 30, 2016, 07:37:48 PM »
I just got a tacoma pickup that is going to replace my old volvo wagon as my astro vehicle of choice.   I also found a camper shell for it, perfect match.



I still need to wire the shell's 3rd brake light, as well as dome light.    I'm thinking of replacing the dome light with those color changing LED tapes, I have some that can be really bright, but also can be turned down pretty dim.  my thought is, dim red for astro nights, bright amber or white for general use.   The light strings run off a 12V power supply, so I was thinking I'd secure the power/reciever module in a little pod near the ceiling, and wire that to the light tape running down both sides of the roof of the shell, maybe behind a plastic half-pipe diffuser.

Anyone done this specifically for astro?

plan A) is to hard wire the lights with a 'red/white' switch and a knob based PWM dimmer of my own destruction, plan B) is to use the existing multicolor.

John Pierce

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Re: pickup camper shell astro lighting...
« Reply #1 on: April 12, 2016, 10:50:23 PM »
and plan C, ahahahahah, plan C is, I found a triple slide pot PWM LED dimmer.


testing on the kitchen table


dimmer in a box. 

now I just need to wire it all up for real, and I'm gold!

any color I want in my camper shell!, like dim red!




John Pierce

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Re: pickup camper shell astro lighting...
« Reply #2 on: April 25, 2016, 02:04:27 PM »
and wired and installed.... yay.



ok, I hadn't trimmed the frayed ends of the cable sheathing when I took the pics, it didn't look that bad in real life as its all black on black, but this photo has the shadow contrast boosted so you can see the details...   that extra bit of twisted red/black wire stuffed in back is for the original dome light, which I haven't removed  yet.

John Pierce

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Re: pickup camper shell astro lighting...
« Reply #3 on: April 30, 2016, 03:45:33 AM »
and it finally got tested at a dark site tonight at the SCAC star party at Quail Hollow Ranch...   way plenty dim red to not annoy anyone yet provide sufficient light on the tailgate to see where stuff is, and after everyone had packed up, the bright white setting was way bright.