Spindle Lighting

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Blog entry by Henri Monnier posted 07-29-2013 12:12 PM 1566 reads 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This ‘thing’ about getting really good light near and around the spindle on my CNC table has been a real PITA for me. I have tried various ideas from the web, and other places. Many worked reasonably well, but each had factors, shadows, etc., that I did not like. I think finally I have arrived at a very good solution that works like a champ, is easy to install, and the price is right!

I have a “Kent’s” dust shoe on the base of the router (love that shoe!) but sometimes it makes it difficult to line something up, as it shades out a lot of the ambient light. A small flashlight works OK, but is still not the best solution. I wanted to be able to see the installed bit easily, so I could line things up, etc..

I found this solution to be an easy install, attach the light, run a couple of wires, a switch to turn it on/off, and you are done. I believe for intermittent use, you can run it from a battery, I did run it from a 9VDC battery for a while, while playing with it, but I ran power (+12VDC from the controller) thru a twisted pair shielded 2 conductor wire (the same wire used for my limit switches, available from Lowes or HD used primarily for alarm systems). The light is much brighter with 12VDC than 9VDC.

This is a picture of the light. It’s called an Angel Eye Headlight Accent Light, runs on 12VDC to 30VDC. I’m sure you’ve seen them an many of the new cars.

It is ALL LED, in my case I got the 100MM one, as the base of my spindle is 83MM. They are available in several sizes and colors. BTW the measurements they give on the website are the outside dimensions, the 90mm one has a 80mm ID…I’d guess that the rest of the sizes with that model are all the same width) See them here. I’m sure there are many other suppliers.

It comes with a few bumpers for mounting, I used several dabs of silicon seal which worked out fine. For about the final 1/3 of the light, it is not attached, to allow movement of the arm of the shoe that secures the shoe to the router as you tighten it.

I first drilled a hole (5/16) thru the top of the shoe, between the router and the dust collector hose. The
wire and it’s small connector was fed thru that hole, which I closed up with silicon seal.

The remaining harness has a mating connector, a small 3/8” x 1.3” round ‘thing’(no idea what it’s for) and a pair of leads, one white and the other pink. This I sorta stuffed the round ‘thing’ into a void in the router mount to stabilize it. Since the picture was taken, I added some foam from a sanding pad to further stabilize it.

Simply connect your DC source to these wires (hot or plus to pink, ground or minus to the white). I wired 2 switches in parallel, both SPST, but one of them is a push button so I can just have it on momentarily as needed. I have found that I have it on almost all the time, so you may want to dispense of the second switch.
The following is a picture of the worktable with all other lights out in the shop. Plenty of illumination…... WOW I can really see under there!!!!!

I cant imagine how bright it would be with 30VDC….

I did have to grind out a small amount of the removable part of the dust shoe in two places (a small bit by
one of the magnets, and a small bit at the rear of the shoe) so that the light when installed with the shoe on would have clearance all around the router hole space.

I think you’ll like the light it gives under the plate!


-- |~ Henrii~|- - We'll be friends till we're old and senile... Then we'll be new friends!!

3 comments so far

View Vince's profile


1196 posts in 3881 days

#1 posted 07-29-2013 12:58 PM

That’s a great idea, well done hmonnier

-- Vince

View FreshSawDust's profile


68 posts in 2782 days

#2 posted 07-29-2013 01:24 PM

I like that idea, thanks for sharing. I’m glad to know that I am not the only one with shiny spots on my holddowns.

-- TJ - Perryville, Missouri

View Henri Monnier's profile

Henri Monnier

45 posts in 2319 days

#3 posted 07-29-2013 05:43 PM

Yes FreshSawDust, I do have a couple of those. Recently I’ve been using more of the ones I make, then I don’t feel so bad it happens….

-- |~ Henrii~|- - We'll be friends till we're old and senile... Then we'll be new friends!!

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