Having worked with fiber optic filament & cable for many years, I’ve experimented with a number of different ways to attach the fiber to a single LED light source. Here we will share one of our favorite methods using heat shrink tubing.For this example we will connect an ultra bright white 1000M single LED illuminator to 50 individual .75mm single strand filaments.
Included with your 1000M LED model & craft illuminator, you will find a few inches of black plastic tubing. This tubing is actually 1/4″ Heat Shrink Tubing (HST) used for electrical applications. If you look at the illuminator, you’ll see that the electrical connections are covered with HST. This is done to protect and reinforce the connections. When heat is applied to HST, it SHRINKS! Hence its name.
Gather all the individual single strand fiber optic filaments that you would like to illuminate. In our example we are using 50 individual strands of .75mm filament. Slide the filaments into the 1/4″ HST. Slide the HST all the way over the filaments as shown in the pic and align the filaments.
“The Beam” ~ The objective is to direct the filaments in to the LED’s beam by sliding the LED into the open end of the heat shrink tubing. As you can see in the photo, the beam is healthy, so directing the filaments into it is not that difficult. Once you slide the LED into the tube, you’ll notice that the ends of the fiber optic filaments illuminate.
- CAREFULLY ‘wave’ the HST over a flame using a side to side motion.
- DO NOT allow the HST to touch the flame!
- DO NOT stop the HST over the flame… keep it moving!
- It should ‘shrink’ right up! (NOTE: Once you shrink it, it can NOT be un-shrunk)
< As you can see – the heat shrink tubing snugs up nice and tight around the LED assembly. It also becomes firmer once it’s shrunk. You’ll also notice the black electrical tape that we wrapped around the fiber optic filaments and the HST in a previous step.
The finished fiber optic 1000M LED assembly.