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Adding LED lights to Nerf blasters – Beginners Tutorial

Adding LED lights to Nerf blasters – Beginners Tutorial

Adding LED lights to Nerf blasters – Beginners Tutorial – Hi guys, I’ve literally just finished my first attempt at adding an LED with switch to a Nerf gun, and it actually worked! I figured if I can do it with no electronic experience, anyone can and other people might like to know how to do it, so I’m knocking up this beginners tutorial for adding an LED to your Nerf or other blaster weapons. I just want to point out that I’m a total noob and this tutorial should be read with that in mind. I worked off EXACTLY what the guy in the electronics store told me and an image one of my awesome Facebook commenters had linked to (Thanks Skawticide).

How to add LED lights to your Nerf / Blaster – Shopping!

What you will need

Adding LED lights to Nerf blasters

Some of the bits you will need for LED magic

First up I was under the impression I would walk into the electronics store, buy a bag of colored LED lights, wire, soldering iron, solder, switches and some batteries, head home and bam, but apparently it’s not that easy.

You will need all of those things, but I was also told I’d need resistors (I watched a few tutorials and none of them used these, I also downloaded an image and it too bypassed them). To complicate things further you need specific resistors dependent on the color of the LED you’re using… weird. One resistor works with orange, red and yellow (RR0531 0.5W 20R). If you want a white, blue or green LED it’s a different resistor (RR0524 0.5W 10R).

LED light tutorial – Equipment

LED lights (I got an assortment of 3 and 5mm)
LED Bezels (this was a personal choice so it looks neat)
Lithium batteries (3V)
Switches (slide or flick)
Resistors
Covered wire
Soldering Iron
Solder
Wire snips
Drill (various drill bits)
Good strong tape

How to add LED lights to your Nerf / Blaster

First things first

LED lights for Nerf blasters

Here it is, in the flesh basic LED circuit for Nerf

TEST the LED! Don’t solder that part of the circuit until you know it’s definitely working. One leg on an LED – I’m told – is negative, one positive, if it doesn’t work, flip the battering, if it still doesn’t work.. it’s a dud.

Cut your wire to the length you need and strip the ends so you can solder them.

When soldering the switch make sure one of the wires goes through two sections.

Readying the Nerf / Blaster for the LED and switch

Drill baby drill!

LED light basics for nerf blasters

Try and keep it neat! Make sure it's secure.

Time to take a drill to the blaster you’re modding… MAKE SURE where you’re placing the switch and LED isn’t going to interfere with any of the moving parts and leaves room for the blaster to go back togther.

Work out where you’re going to drill the holes for the LED and the switch. I used a flick switch because it goes through a circle hole and bolts into place.. very neat, it also has a bit more retro flair than a flat slide switch :)

I started with a small bit and worked my way up to the size needed, but that’s up to you.

Finished LED light on Nerf Vortex Proton

Nerf Vortex Proton with LED light and switch

Once it’s all in place, tape or glue all the wires and obviously test it prior to that and again once it’s all secure.

Put the blaster back together and test the blaster and LED. If it’s all good, put the screws back in.. sorted!

Nerf / Blaster LED modding

Things to note!

Bigger, better, brighter LEDs will need more power and in turn use more power. I found some amazing red LEDs in a beautiful silver frame and nut system.. sooo sweet and the wires were already attached ready for the switch etc. According to the guy in the store it would need a huge battery to run it and if using stacked lithium batteries they wouldn’t last very long at all. Bummer.

Assuming the guy in the store was right, you need specificl resistors dependent on LED color.

LED bezels will make the finished mod look that little bit more professional, hold the LED in place and they’re a few cents each.

If you’re young and going to use a soldering iron.. make sure you get an adult to help!

I hope this tutorial has helped you in some way.
Happy modding!

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This LED light basic tutorial for adding to Nerf and other blasters was written for GirlyGamer.com.au. It will also appear on Facebook.com/Nerfenstein why not join me there!

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6 Comments

  1. Thanks for the write-up. Not sure what the point of them is really, but i guess they look good. Getting in to change the batteries must be a real ass pain tho? Think I’ll give it a try.

    [Reply]

  2. Thank you for finally clearing this up for me! Now I can (gulp!) consider adding LEDs to some blasters. :)

    [Reply]

    GirlyGamer Reply:

    Since I did this I’d now consider purchasing pre-wired and switched LED’s, it would make things a lot easier for you, dependent on where you’re mounting them. Good luck!

    [Reply]

    EA Nanes Reply:

    that’s a thought. i do hope the lone electronics store in my neck of the woods has something like that. thanks again!

    [Reply]

  3. Hey, I realise this is a slightly older post, but I love what you’re doing with these mods AND you’ve been slightly mislead regarding what it would take to run those pre-wired LEDs (I used to work for the electronics store you bought the hardware from).

    If you’re using the 12V prewired LEDs, they should run fine off a 9V battery (although it will be less bright) alternately you can wire together a 9V and 2x AA batteries in series to get 12V (more or less).

    Assuming you have any questions regarding electronics, just flick me an email (I’m assuming you can see my email as it’s your site)

    [Reply]

    GirlyGamer Reply:

    Hey Subtotal,
    that is really cool of you thanks so much. I haven’t done any LED’s I’ve needed to wire myself since, it was just too time consuming and my knowledge of it is far too sparse.
    Thanks so much for that offer of help, really cool of you, I’ll definitely keep it in mind :)

    [Reply]

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