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Power supply from defunct computer

For a number of reasons I wanted (needed?) a stable power supply with a bit of Oomph. The one I was using was very limited. So I explored redundant computer power supplies. They can give a variety of voltages, some of which at quite high current.

I found a Web site that described the main issues in turning a computer unit into a bench power supply for the workshop. The main point is that we are looking at the more recent ATX power supplies that have the on-off switch controlled via the motherboard.

I suggest you follow the information on that site as it has been written with safety in mind by a workshop technician.  I DO NOT SUGGEST that you take this project on unless you know what you are doing!

When completed the supply should be placed in its own storage bay so that the ventilation slots are not exposed. Wires, connectors etc could drop down onto the mains section where full voltages are found. This is particularly important for those using 240v.

I used a project box and screwed it onto the end of the power supply, pulling through the wires. I then wired up a set of power plugs as well as power-on LEDs. You can have an LED that shows that the mains power is being fed to the unit plus and LED that shows you have switched on power to the plugs - note I have a switch for this purpose on the unit.

The unit is inserted into an enclosed shelf for use. Only the outputs are accessible. This is important because there is a risk of dropping things down the vents.

Another purpose in creating the power supply is that I wanted to power flash guns without wasting batteries. I needed 9v and 3.3v that my alternative battery packs could plug into. Then I needed other values for electronic projects.

I DO NOT SUGGEST that you take this project on unless you know what you are doing!

power_unit_102

 

The power on LEDs - left = mains on, right = power on

 

Battery replacement units for Flash Guns

LEDs_on

battery_units

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