Technology
How-To: Radioshack light-up switch hack

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When shopping for switches, it’s really satisfying to dig through a drawer full of awesome options for your project, but it’s easy to get stuck with something that’s not quite right if you don’t read the package carefully. I identify with Randy Sarafan’s illuminated switch problem:

I was about to wire it all up into my newest guitar pedal when I realized that this switch actually required 120 VAC to illuminate! What’s up with that? This bugged me a great deal as I would be working with low-voltage DC, not high-voltage AC. This was not going to do.

I immediately resolved to replace the little bulb inside with an LED. This required a near total dissection of switch, but after a little figuring out, I am happy to report that the mission has been accomplished. Follows is a method for converting an illuminated Radioshack switch from 120VAC to 3-12 VDC.

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Becky Stern is a Content Creator at Autodesk/Instructables, and part time faculty at New York’s School of Visual Arts Products of Design grad program. Making and sharing are her two biggest passions, and she's created hundreds of free online DIY tutorials and videos, mostly about technology and its intersection with crafts. Find her @bekathwia on YouTube/Twitter/Instagram.

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