How to add LED'S to your 3D printer

Having LED's on your 3d printer is a great way to ensure that your print area is always well lit. This is extremely useful if you want to create some stunning time lapse videos as it will provide a consistent light source throughout your prints entirety.

Here is everything you will need

Quick fire guide : 1. Print mounts and enclosures. 2. Connect LM2596 board to power supply 3. Set LM2596 voltage to LED strip rating. 4. Connect LED strip to LM2596 board. 5. Mount LED's and LM2596 board to printer.

In depth walk through:

There are many different LED strips out there but any strips rated 5v to 12v will be suitable for this walk through. In this walk through we will be using the popular Creality3D Ender 3 however the electronics and wiring will be compatible with most 3d printers.

Required tools and materials Soldering iron - This kit contains all of the underlined below Solder Wire strippers Small flat head screwdriver Medium cross head screwdriver Multimeter

Crimper and crimps

Some thick speaker cables Some thinner ribbon cables LM2596 DC-TO-DC converter LED strip (5 - 12v)

Printed housing Printed LED strip brackets Printed cable mounts

Printing mounts, enclosures and clips The first step you will need to take is creating suitable mounts and enclosures for the electronics in order to ensure everything is safely and securely mounted. All the parts we printed are linked in the tools and materials section.

Preparing and configuring the LM2596 board The best way to ensure a safe and proper connection between your power supply and the LM2596 board is to tin the wire ends and connection points on the board itself. For these connections you will want to use the thicker speaker cables as you will be connecting these wires to your power supply. After the wires and board have been tinned you can go ahead and connected the wires to the "in+" and "in-" terminals of the LM2596. Just remember red wire goes to "in+" and black wire goes to "in-".

LM2596 Converter board

On the opposite end of the wires strip approximately 5mm of insulation and twist the end of the wire. Next add some forked crimps to the ends of each wire.


With your printer fully powered off, unscrew a positive and negative terminal and insert the crimped ends of your cables (again, not forgetting red goes to positive and black goes to negative). Screw the terminals back down and ensure you cannot pull the cables out of the terminals.

Terminals on a our 3d printers power supply. We added the wires with the red crimping.

Now that the LM2596 board is connected to the power supply you will need to get your multimeter and set it to read voltages. Connect your multimeter probes to the "out+" and "out-" terminals of the LM2596 board. Next you'll want to power on your printer and adjust the small screw on the potentiometer until the multimeter reads the required voltage for your LED's.

You will now need to connect your LED strip to the "out+" and "out-" terminals of the LM2596 board using the thinner wires. Following the same practice as with the previous thicker cables, you will want to tin both wires and the terminals they connect to. Once these are connected, set the LM2596 board into its printed enclosure and feed the wires out of either end.

Wires to LED strip. Green is our 5v line and black is our negative line.

Everything should now be fully wired up and connected together. Turning on your printer should now also activate your LED strip. You can now slide the LED strip mounting brackets into the top extrusion your printer and insert the LED strip.

Final Product! All mounted and wired up to our Ender 3!

And that is it! You should have successfully added an LED strip to your 3d printer! If you wanted to add a switch to your LED'S this can be done by purchasing an single pole single throw (SPST) switch and connecting it up to the negative wire between the printers power supply and the LM2596 board.

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