I'm new to all this so please bear with me. I've searched the forums to see if there was an answer to some of the questions I have but could not find any that were satisfactory although the answer may have been right in front of me but, since I don't have much experience, I may not have recognized it as the answer I was looking for. In any case, here is what I'm trying to do:
I'm building a custom classic car and would like to build custom LED tail lights for it. I will be retro-fitting the original housing with an LED board. What I would like for the light assembly to do is to have an outer ring of light that runs the perimeter of the inside of the housing that can function as running lights and turn signal along with increasing in intensity to match the brake lights portion of the board which will be located in the center of the board when the brakes are applied. This is what the housings look like:
First off, I would like to change the original lenses out and replace them with a full red lens that spans the entire face of the housing. I will fab backup lights into the bumper. My plan is to buy a sheet of clear acrylic and cut out an insert that I will use for the base of the board that will fit inside the housing. I will cut out a secondary base but also cut out the center of the second base so that it resembles a clear acrylic bezel. The idea here is to make a sort of halo ring that can be laid over the top of the base. The base will be covered in a reflective material that has an adhesive backing with holes drilled to accomodate the LED leads. The Halo ring will also have the same reflective backing to separate the different operations I would like it to do and to keep any bleed through from occurring.
The Halo ring will act as both running lights and turn signals. The center section will be filled with LED's and will act as the brake light portion of the assembly along with the Halo ring lighting up with equal intensity. With the brakes not applied and turn signal activated, it should light up to the brake light intensity on flash on and return to running light intensity on flash off.
This should give you and idea of what I am looking to do. It's the tail light from an Audi A7 turned sideways:
My questions are:
What would be the best way to light up the Halo ring? I've seen acrylic speaker rings that have LED flex tape that has been adhered to the outer perimeter of the ring. Is LED flex tape bright enough to match up with whatever bulbs I use in the center section and for that matter be bright enough to use as part of the brake light? Would this be the best way or is there a better way? I don't want to see a break in the halo ring. It should light up all the way around without any dark spots. I've seen a few youtube videos chronicling how to make halo rings but they use LEDs that are inserted into holes that have been drilled into the ends of the plastic rod.
What would be the best way to light up the center "Brake" section? Should I use normal 5mm LEDs bunched together and wired in series or would it be easier and more economical to go with a Superflux style bulb? I want the center section to wash out in light and not see any gaps between the bulbs. Because of the shape of the Supeflux bulbs there may be a gap in between bulbs or are the Superflux bulbs bright enough to wash out the center section and hide any gaps there may be?
Hopefully my questions and explanation of what I want to do are understandable and not too naive!
Thanks for bearing with me and my long post!