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In this DIY tutorial, learn about embedding LED strip lights in epoxy resin. Also, I show you tips on embedding objects in resin.
Tools & Material I Used
In addition, be sure to visit my favorite epoxy resin tools and material.
There are several things which are difficult to fully explain with words and images, so be sure to check out the video tutorial below!
I received many questions/comments regarding the technique I used to embed LED light strips in epoxy resin for this LED wall art project.
As a result, I decided to provide more detail regarding the technique I use for embedding objects in resin.
Additionally, I’ll show you how this technique makes it easy to replace LED strip lights embedded in resin.
Keep in mind, I use the term ’embed’ in this article as a synonym for submerge, suspend, and encase.
Embed LED Strip Lights in Resin
There are many ways for embedding objects in resin.
Essentially, I’ve either used or considered using the 3 techniques outlined below.
Create Tunnel in Resin
Hands down, this is the best technique for embedding led strip lights in epoxy resin.
This technique makes it easy to replace broken LED light strips or upgrade LED strip lights to different colors.
Furthermore, this technique helps UV LED strip lights to efficiently charge the glow powder.
If you are interested in resin glow powder, be sure to visit my live edge beach glow table.
Also, the tunnel hides the LED lights from view.
Ultimately, creating a hollow tunnel is more difficult than the other techniques.
Luckily, this DIY tutorial provides detailed instruction on how to embed LED strip lights in resin using this technique.
Glue LED Light Strips
This technique is widely used because it is simple. Additionally, most LED light strips have an peel-off adhesive on the back.
I used this embedding technique on the following projects:
Ultimately, this technique is simple and convenient.
This technique can be improved by routing a groove for the LED lights to rest flush with the wall art or table.
This technique makes attaching LED strip lights to epoxy resin easy; however, it has 2 issues.
- First, the peel-off adhesive lacks proper strength to hold the LED lights in place. As a result, they eventually come off with time.
- Super glue can be used to solve problem 1. However, it makes a mess and it is difficult to remove.
Essentially, problem 2 solves problem 1; however, it creates an additional problem.
Fully Encapsulate LED Strip Lights in Epoxy Resin
Since I don’t recommend this technique for embedding objects in resin, I will only list the cons.
First, epoxy produces heat during the curing process and may damage the LED light strips.
Second, it is impossible to replace the LED light strip.
Embedding Objects in Resin
First, 1/4″ clear flexible tubing works best.
The tubing does not stay straight and prefers to curl. In turn, I recommend to use something rigid to keep it straight.
Also, be sure whatever you use is plastic because it will need to be cut in later step.
I happen to have an old plastic wire fish rod which fit perfectly..
Then, use hot glue or silicone to seal each end.
Next, place the tube in the middle of the wall art.
Keep in mind, you will need to trim each end if you install the tube and rod as mentioned above.
Often times, folks trim each end anyway to square up the wall art. Therefore, it isn’t an issue..
Alternate Option for Embedding Objects in Res
There is an option if you don’t plan to trim each side of your resin project.
First, drill a hole in the resin mold the slightly larger than tube (3/8″ should work) into each end of the resin mold.
The tubing and rod should be roughly 3 to 5 inches longer than the table.
Next, slide the tubing through the holes.
Essentially, this option eliminates the need to seal each end with hot glue and it eliminates the need to trim each end.
Simply use a razor blade to cut the tubing after the rod is removed in a later step.
Suspend Objects in Resin
First, I recommend pouring a thin layer of resin, allow this to cure, and then add the tubing.
Obviously, you should only do this if you are using transparent resin or to charge glow powder via UV LED Lights.
This suspends the LED lights in resin. This technique is also referred to as encasing objects in resin or suspending objects in resin.
The pictures below clearly show I didn’t do a good job with this.
As a result, it caused me to have to paint the back of the LED light strip.
This is an easy step. Ultimately, just pour resin as I did for this LED wood and resin wall art.
Remove Rod from Tube
First, trim off each end with a circular saw or table saw.
Additionally, make sure to cut the end of the rod on each side.
This exposes the rod which makes it easy to remove.
Next, expose the rod from the other side by pushing it a little.
Then, completely remove it.
If you look closely, you can see how I didn’t completely cover the tubing with purple resin.
Inspect the Tunnel
First, inspect the tunnel once you remove the rod.
It should look like the picture below.
Embedding LED Strip Lights in Epoxy Resin
First, tie or tape the led light strip to the rod or device used to keep the tube straight.
Additionally, I prefer the LED lights to face down towards the rear of the table.
Next, pull the LED strip through the tunnel.
Then, cut the LED strips between the contacts.
Or, bend it around the end towards the back if it will be powered via a wall outlet.
Also, be sure to leave about 5″ in excess to power the LED lights.
In conclusion, I hope you learned how to embed LED strip lights in epoxy resin and the pros/cons of different options.
Leave a comment and let me know if you plan to try this technique on your next project.
- How To Fill Wood Voids with Epoxy
- Set Shells in Resin
- Best Epoxy Resin Tools and Materials
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Frequently Asked Questions
To embed an object in resin, you need to seal the object for protection. To seal the object, use a glue that dries clear and coat the object with 2 coats.
Yes, you can embed beads in resin for decorative purposes or for resin jewelry.
No, you cannot encase food in resin. Food contains enzymes that break down the food, which will cause the food to rot.
To preserve something in resin, you need to seal it with a resin sealer. Then, proceed with embedding the object in resin.