LED Sewing Machine Lights 101
What to Look For In A LED Sewing Machine Light
Facts Shown, Myths Busted and what safety features are paramount
There are many LED Sewing Machine Lights on the market at the moment, but which one is the best for you?
We are listing here the things to look for that make them right for you and the sewing you are doing
Quick What to Look For Guide For Best Quality LED Sewing Machine Lights :
- SAFETY : Always make sure Australian Approved Power is provided
- COLOUR TEMPERATURE : “Daylight / Pure White” 5000k to 6700k on the Kelvin Colour Temperature Card is perfect for sewing
- LED CHIP = BRIGHTNESS : 5630 is Best / 5050 is O.K.
- LED STRIP MOUNTING : Under throat only or wrap mounting / Depends on what you actually sew and if you want your strip transferable to different machines
- DIMMER SWITCH ? : Personal choice but they are usually included with all kits from all manufacturers
Please continue to read the complete article for ALL the relevant information and why these conclusions were drawn
Because this LED Sewing Machine Lights 101 contains large amounts of information, we have sectioned each area for easier reading. Please just click on the tab required for more information on each section.
Colour Temperature :
All LED Sewing Machine Lights are bright, it is the nature of LED Strip Lighting, but not all are equal both in the chipset used and colour temperature, which is what this section is about.
In most cases the colour temperature is an after thought, when sewing, it is essential. Most manufacturers don’t think about it, they work in warm (yellow), Natural (whitish yellow) or Cool (bluish tinge to blue). They simply do not understand that we need our fabric to show it’s exact colour, especially when piecing two tones of black or two tones of white, or when we are trying to differentiate the front and back of a piece of batik fabric. A colour hue makes that almost impossible.
It is worth noting that when “Colour Temperature” is quoted, it is not referencing how hot the LED Strip gets, it if referencing the colour that is emitted from the LED Strip.
The Kelvin temperature scale ranges from 2700K to 9500K. Within that range are a variety of colour temperatures labelled:
- Warm White Light ranges from 2700K to 3500K. This produces a calming and relaxing light that is great for bedrooms, living rooms, and dining rooms or restaurants. (Emits a yellow light)
- Natural White Light is in the 3500K to 4500K range. Cool and clean, this LED colour most closely mimics sunlight, which makes it good for use in almost any location. Basements, garages and other dark places that don’t have a lot of natural light are a good place for almost white LED lights. (Emits a softer yellow light)
- Daylight White Light ranges from 5000K-6500K. This is a crisp and clear white light that is great for garages, security lights, offices, or retail locations. (Emits a a colour neutral white light) PERFECT FOR SEWERS
- Cool White Light is between 6500K and 9000K. These are good in commercial and industrial applications or any situation in which you want to foster alertness. (Emits a blue light)
What you are looking for in a LED Sewing Machine Light is “Daylight White Light” or a temperature from 5000K to 6500K, this does not emit any colour change from the LED Itself, so apart from being bright, it will allow you to see the exact colour of the fabric or thread you are working with.
Below are graphs of the actual Kelvin Temperature Light
The following photo gives a comparison between warm, daylight / pure white and cold white
There is quite a remarkable difference between the 3 different types of lights. Although technically all are White and all are bright.
If you are looking at the LED Sewing Machine Lighting Strip, and no colour temperature is quoted, ask, they should be able to give you the “Kelvin Range” of light emitted from their strips.
Unfortunately you cannot go by the name of the light, different manufacturers call different tonings different names and quite often they will class a cool light as a natural light.
Every globes should have the Kelvin Temperature on it, LED Sewing Machine Lights 101 : Always look for between 5000K and 6500K for the best Daylight or pure white globe.
CHIP TYPE = BRIGHTNESS :
LED Sewing Machine Lights 101, Technical Stuff coming up, but important Technical information, we have tried to make the information understandable as well as being relevant. If you require a more in-depth technical knowledge please contact us.
DIODE / CHIP MANUFACTURERS :
Lots and lots around the world, we have narrowed it down to the top 3, and as long as you purchase their Class 1 Chips there will not be an issue with the light strip you buy. And all of them offer a 50,000 hour guarantee on the chips themselves.
There are a lot more, but these would be the 3 biggest suppliers within Australia, and all of them are manufactured overseas.
LUMINS : Light Emitted
We are used to calculating light emitted in watts, that does not work with LED Strip Lighting.
A 60 Watt LED would almost blind you, where it is average light in the old “light bulb” world. Lumins is not a new concept to measure light being emitted, but it is now the standard use, and mandatory in the United States
The higher the Lumin they brighter the light
LED DIODE TYPES : Diode = the actual Light Beam
3528 LED 5050 LED and 5630 (5730) LED are the 3 most commonly used surface mount diodes for flex strip lighting. As LED technology advances, these 3 types of LED chip are now used for home and commercial lighting to replace compact fluorescent and other incandescent lighting.
The current standard length on each of the Strips is 60 Diodes per meter of strip. The larger the chip the closer they are together.
3528 LED will illuminate brightness equivalent to approximately 6 Lumen and use approximately 0.06 Watts
5050 LED diode will illuminate brightness equivalent to approximately 18 Lumen and use approximately 0.18 Watts
5630 (5730) LED diode will illuminate brightness equivalent to approximately 50 Lumen and use approximately 5630 (5730) consumes about 0.5 Watt
The image below is a comparison in size of the 3 different Led Strip Diodes
This is a video comparing all 3 types of LED Lighting Strip and the difference in the brightness
The Following Image is each of Led Strip Lit. These are Daylight White Light
(Colour emitted in this video is “Daylight” or “Pure White”)
The video below is a comparison of the exact same 3 LED Strips but in Warm White. We have included this to show exactly why we insist in using ONLY Daylight White as above
A Huge Thank you to www.enrgrup.com for these comparisons
LED Sewing Machine Lights 101 : Always ask what chip set is being used in the LED Sewing Machine Light
Should you purchase a Wrap Mounted or a Throat Mounted LED Sewing Machine Light?
Both are extremely good, but are used for different types of sewing, choose the one that suits your needs the best.
Most Portable Sewing Machines will hold an extra 6 LEDs when choosing the Wrap Style
Wrap Mounted (Non Transferable)
Everyone agrees the Wrap Mount looks Very impressive, but if you are quilting or have large volumes of fabric under the throat of you machine, there is a lot higher chance of the light strip accidentally coming off. (For this reason the Wrap Mounted LED Sewing Machine Lights cannot safely be attached via a hook and loop tape).
Throat Mounted (Transferable)
The Throat Mounted LED Sewing Machine Strip is well away from your working surface and fabric, and is much more suited if you are quilting or using large volumes of fabric.
To make the Throat Mounted LED Sewing Machine Strip transferable, each strip is stabilised with a very thin piece of perspex, and the hook and loop tape is then added. This makes the strip a more rigid than the wrap mount, but also makes the LED Strip more stable. (This is the 2nd reason why we cannot make the wrap mounted LED Strip transferable, once the strip is stabilised, it will not curve around the sewing machine throat)
LED Sewing Machine Lights 101 : Choose your LED Sewing Machine Light Mount according to your type of sewing
Always make sure your LED Sewing Machine Light Strip comes with an Australian Approved Power Supply. Many are bought into this country illegally and even though they have the Australian Wall Plug, they are not approved. If your power supply is not approved and something goes wrong, you may not be covered with warranties including your sewing machine.
Never use a power source from another country with plug adapter, this is extremely unsafe and selling an electrical product with a power plug adapter is ILLEGAL in Australia
Do not purchase a LED Sewing Machine Light that has a Light Strip Connector, these are not as stable as actual soldering, and should only ever be used to join LED Strips that will not get bumped or moved in any way. Sewing Machines naturally vibrate, and there is also a chance they can be jostled and knocked when moving, or even by your fabric.
Always purchase a LED Strip that has a waterproof covering. Not for the waterproofing, but for protection of both you and your fabrics. Non waterproof has the LED’s exposed, and can easily catch on fabric, fingers or skin, increasing the likely hood of removing the strip from your sewing machine.
The best cover is the IP65, which is a high quality silicon bead cover encapsulating the actual Led’s themselves.
IP68 is Overkill for LED Sewing Machine Lights, this allows the strip to be totally submerged into water and is used for lighting in swimming pools etc.
LED Sewing Machine Lights 101 : Never Compromise on SAFETY
If you have any queries, or require further information on our LED Sewing Machine Lights 101 please do not hesitate in contacting us.