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Old 04-06-2017, 06:37 PM   #1
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2016 19' Flying Cloud
Portland , Oregon
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LED spot light remote controlled dimmer modification

We have a 2016 19' Flying Cloud and it has these great, but at the same time horrible, LED spot lights. Each is individually switched, great, directional, great, but no dimming, just bright, bright, bright. There are four of them, two upfront over the dinette and two at the rear over the bed.

The bed ones are great for reading but not for more relaxed mood lighting.

I set out to modify these LED spot lights with dimming capabilities.

I found these on Amazon

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Here is the link on Amazon
LEDMO(1 Pack) Mini Remote Control Dimmer for Single Color LED Strip/LED Ribbon/LED Tape, 12VDC 6A, 72W, IR 6 Key Remote Controller, Wireless Remote Control https://www.amazon.com/dp/B014EZ4M0K..._mJT5yb1TVM90K

Note, in my photo I've cut off the connector plugs and prepared the wires. It's rated at 72watts, plenty for these lights.

There is an input set and output set of wires.

First unscrew the light, two screws, very easy

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Next, cut the -Negative connection. It's the white wire and at least in my trailer it was labeled.

The black negative dimmer input wire will connect to the white negative wire hanging out of the trailer panel.

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Next you need to cut or unsolder the black positive wire which is connected to the switch on the light.

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It's hard to see in the above but the black wire leading to the light is disconnected now.

The now available switch terminal is where you wire (solder) the red dimmer switch input to.

By doing it like this the manual switch can be used to still turn on and off the light. In the off position you are not powering the dimmer avoiding any vampire loss.

Next you can hook up the dimmer switch output wires to the LED light wires. Red dimmer switch output wire to black LED wire.

Black dimmer switch output wire to white LED light wire.

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Now next it's time to pack it all into the light fixture. It's a tight fit which is why I soldered the wires together and did not use wire connectors.

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The dimmer switch has a IR sensor which needs to be left out of the light. Rather than drilling holes anywhere I just gently squished the wire and sensor off the side of the fixture. Yes this method is not perfect looking but still very unnoticeable imo.

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I used a screw driver to point to the little white sensor in the photo above.

Be careful when screwing it back up not to make it too tight otherwise you will slice the sensor wires.

Now you can use the lights. Switch them on, then use the remote to turn them on. This is not the best dimmer setup as you only have 4-5 light steps but it takes the LEDs from blinding to mellow.

Hard to see that in the next picture. First is super bright

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And mellow

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If you use the manual switch to turn the lights off then when you manually turn them back in they will turn on at the same level you left them.

You can turn them off with the remote too for the super lazy of us. Remember the dimmer is still powered if you don't use the manual switch. Oh and if you turn the light off by the dimmer, then manually turn off the light, when you manually turn on the light it will still be off and you would use the remote to turn it back on.

I've put a small mark on the light to remind me which manual switch setting is off.

Simple cheap modification.

Oh, this dimmer also has a flash and bright to dim function just in case you like that stuff.

If the remote is close to one sensor you control that light. I've found that one remote can be used to control all lights. Pull it away and you can control two lights at the same time.
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Old 04-25-2017, 11:39 AM   #2
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Nice work
Thanks for sharing
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Old 09-10-2018, 08:38 AM   #3
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2014 25' FB Flying Cloud
2005 30' Classic
Keswick , Virginia
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Great stuff Snowy! I just did it with dimmer switches which required more work.
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Old 09-10-2018, 11:02 PM   #4
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search Amazon for 'pwm led' you will get a lot of options. We use the small box style.. surface mount and dial control.. the 'switch' to turn on the lights is already there.. just 'set' and forget.. if you need more light, no searching for a 'remote control'.. just tactile locate and adjust....

But then, I did not know chain saws made noise for a long time..
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Old 09-11-2018, 04:13 PM   #5
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LED reading light dimmer switches installed

Last week I installed two dimmer switches on two of the four LED reading lights. A full description can be found at https://airstreamtime.com/2018/09/10...eading-lights/
Everything seems to be working well, but we will see how it goes on an upcoming trip to Michigan. If all is well, I will install two on the other reading lights and one over the dinette table. Had I seen Snowy's way, I might have done it that way, but at least I don't have to worry about losing another remote. Dimming is just like the dimmed ceiling lights.
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Old 09-11-2018, 05:10 PM   #6
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I don't know if this is new (as I've not gone back and compared the specs in the 2018 FC brochure I have somewhere), but in the 2019 FC brochure, it states: "LED Interior Lighting with Dimmer".

I don't know what this really means though as I've not visited my local Airstream dealer recently. 1 dimmer for all the LEDs? 1 dimmer for some of the LEDs? Multiple dimmers for some or all of the LEDs?

Cheers,

Bryan
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Old 09-11-2018, 05:26 PM   #7
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Park City , Utah
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blacklab View Post
I don't know if this is new (as I've not gone back and compared the specs in the 2018 FC brochure I have somewhere), but in the 2019 FC brochure, it states: "LED Interior Lighting with Dimmer".

I don't know what this really means though as I've not visited my local Airstream dealer recently. 1 dimmer for all the LEDs? 1 dimmer for some of the LEDs? Multiple dimmers for some or all of the LEDs?

Cheers,

Bryan
It means dimmable ceiling lights in various configurations. But not the stainless steel reading spotlights.
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Old 09-11-2018, 05:50 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregwall View Post
Last week I installed two dimmer switches on two of the four LED reading lights. A full description can be found at https://airstreamtime.com/2018/09/10...eading-lights/
Everything seems to be working well, but we will see how it goes on an upcoming trip to Michigan. If all is well, I will install two on the other reading lights and one over the dinette table. Had I seen Snowy's way, I might have done it that way, but at least I don't have to worry about losing another remote. Dimming is just like the dimmed ceiling lights.
I read your post and have a question. As far as I can tell, the Airstream fixtures have just a positive and a negative wires. Most dimmers that I have researched have three wires, NEG, POS and GND. Where did you connect the ground wire? Did you located one up in the enclosure behind each light fixture?
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Old 09-12-2018, 05:58 AM   #9
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Wiring

Quote:
Originally Posted by pcskier View Post
I read your post and have a question. As far as I can tell, the Airstream fixtures have just a positive and a negative wires. Most dimmers that I have researched have three wires, NEG, POS and GND. Where did you connect the ground wire? Did you located one up in the enclosure behind each light fixture?
The black ground wire of the dimmer goes to the ground wire of the light and of the coach, which are both white, whose color confuses me, but is consistent in other areas of the trailer. The red positive wire of the dimmer goes to the positive of the coach, which is purple, which confuses me. The white neutral wire of the dimmer goes to positive of the light, which is black, which makes my confusion complete. The value for me in doing these projects is that I gain a little more understanding of how it all works.
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