I'll need a lot (~40-50) of bulbs to get my D&RG (all conventional) layout up and running. After looking at peoples posts, and online availability, the per bulb sticker-shock hit me. So, I'm looking to "Roll-my-own" LED replacement Lights for 022 switch/controllers, accessories lights, etc. I'm looking at making an overseas purchase of parts (50 each).

Do these look like appropriate values?
Bridge Rectifier 40V 1A  $0.06
Capacitor 10uF 25V  $0.007
Resistor Carbon film 1K Ohm 1W  $0.01
Resistor Carbon Film 560 Ohm 1W $0.01
Green LED 5mm through-hole  $0.04
White LED 5mm  $0.08
Red LED, didn't find a 5mm on this site, but they are on Amazon.

These parts work out to about 13-17 cents each if I picked proper values.
[Granted, these won't be in the compact ba9s or s9s bulb base (I'm NOT buying 10K minimum order) empty bulb bases to do these in. Hand-soldered will work I think. LOL]

I've seen a number of posts for TVS diodes, would this be appropriate for my layout? (since I'm running conventional, I don't need these?)
TVS Diode I don't really understand these values, maybe one of you do?:
Type Number, Reverse StandOff Voltage,BreakdownVoltage Min.@IT, TestCurrent,MaximumClampingVoltage@IPP,PeakPulseCurrent,
1.5KE36A 1.5KE36CA 30.80 34.20 37.80 1 49.9 30.5 5

Any comments or suggestions for different parts will be greatly appreciated.

-A.k.a. -Lewis
Today is done...Today was fun...Tomorrow is another one. -Dr Seuss

IF you need to contact me, this disposable email address WILL reach me:

Original Post

Town and Country sells replacement Lionel LED bulbs for 50 bulbs for $60.  You just plug them them in.   The bulbs run on AC or DC.  You might get the quantity discount on a mixed lot if you ask.


I second @shorling mentioning Town and Country. Much easier and just about as cost effective as rolling your own.

As for the TVS diodes, they belong on all layouts, but not at each individual bulb.

If you are doing this to try and learn electronics, it's a good way to get started. Electronics can also be a very fun and rewarding hobby. It's also good to learn something about electronics for doing your own projects on your trains or layout. However, if you only want to change to LEDs and don't want to learn more about electronics, the bulbs as suggested above would be a much easier and faster option.

I'll go with the wanting to learn more about electronics choice here. If you are just starting out wanting to learn more about electronics, you might want to find a 'Through Hole' bridge rectifier. The one you linked to is surface mount and can be more difficult to solder unless you are experienced with this type of component. The 'Through Hole' components are much easier to start with. All of your other selections are 'Through Hole' components.

For the TVS Diodes you will want the bi-directional versions (part numbers ending in CA). The most often used here is the 1.5KE36CA. Recently, one of our very knowledgeable electronics folks here (gunrunnerjohn) has been using the 1.5KE39CA which allows a slightly higher voltage to pass (33.3 volts (1.5KE39CA) as opposed to 30.8 volts (1.5KE36CA)).  

I might also suggest ordering some resistors in different values so you can experiment with different brightness levels. You may or may not be satisfied with the light provided from your LEDs with the only two resistor values being selected. (Of course, unless you have already tried these and are satisfied with them.)   

FWIW, I have ordered from LCSC before with good results both with ordering and with their component quality. It just takes a while to get the parts as do most orders from the Asian suppliers. 

As an alternate supplier, Digikey (USA) is a good one (much faster). Lately, I've been getting almost all of my components from them. Their per component prices are a bit higher. As with LCSC, ordering in quantities can sometimes bring the prices down quite a bit.

Steve/BMORAN4/RTR12 -

Thanks for pointing me to Town & Country. When I get boxes unpacked I'll get a proper count on each bulb-type and then contact them about a mixed bulk purchase (I see I have them bookmarked already in this browser from prior posts).
I forgot to mention that I've been soldering since I was about 10. Around 12-13 I built a Heathkit (remember them? <chuckle>. Wow, they seem to still exist!) shortwave receiver with my Dad. That was really cool to build. I listened to "the world" for many years on that Remember those "Number stations"? Spy news...
Thanks folks

-A.k.a. -Lewis
Today is done...Today was fun...Tomorrow is another one. -Dr Seuss

IF you need to contact me, this disposable email address WILL reach me:

Well experience with soldering helps a lot, but the surface mount components can still be a bit challenging. I do remember the Heathkit stuff, but didn't know they were still around? I'll have to have a look see. Heathkit had some nice stuff back in the day, they even opened a brand new store here back in the late '70s, unfortunately it is long gone.

Heathkit.......brings back memories.  I still have all that stuff:  VTVM, Scope, RF Generator, RC Bridge, tube tester, manuals.  Built it all 50+ years ago.  Some of it still works.  I suspect switch/tube contacts/eyelets are corroded and electrolytic caps are dried up. 


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