Installation of Light Magic

Light Magic Installation


Here we will demonstrate the installation of  Light Magic into an ESM Fairey Sworfdish.  Installation of this unit and all other Lake Microsystems controllers is straightforward. No special skills are required.

Once you determine where your receiver is going to be located, position your Light Magic close by. In this installation it is mounted next the receiver on a piece of light ply using Velcro as my anti vibration mount. Determine the approximate position of the navigation lights, landing light and rotating beacons. Run the wires to the various positions throughout the airplane to the LEDs they will power. Leave them about six inches longer than necessary at the controller end (end with the plug) and four inches on each end. Mark the wires at the controller end as to which light system they go.


Now prepare the mounting positions of the various LEDs.  Your LEDs may be simply installed by drilling a small hole in at the correct location, sliding the wires in and gluing the LED in place.  The photographs show a slightly more complicated installation which makes the LEDs easily replaceable should the airplane be damaged.

To insert the LEDs in their proper position, build in an aluminum tube to slide the LED and wires through. After surface covering is applied and painted, you are ready for the permanent installation of the LEDs. Once in position, the LEDs can be lightly glued in place.

The Navigation Lights tube runs from the wing tip into the aileron servo bay.  Slide the wires through the tube with the LED in the correct position cut the wire four inches past the inside end of the tube.


If your tail light happens to be located in your rudder and you wish to make it easily removable, your rudder needs to be attached with removable hinges. However the chance of a LED failing is slim and it is more than likely you will never need to replace them.


The landing light uses the same technique. Notch out the leading edge of the wing and install an aluminum tube. You may wish to reinforce the back side of the notch with a piece of 1/8 inch plywood. The beacon LEDs should be mounted in the scale location. If on the vertical stabilizer, use the same method shown for the rudder mounted navigation light.


Pay careful attention to the wiring diagram provided with your Light Magic. For full brightness your LEDs need to be wired in series by lighting system. This is not difficult, but can be confusing if the instructions are not understood.

To finalize the installation all wires should be soldered. By leaving four inches of extra wire on each end of the wires the soldering can be done outside the airplane. Then the wires can be neatly coiled and tucked inside.


If you are building a plane with removable wings a couple of extra steps are necessary. Purchase a couple extra one meter jumpers. Each jumper has  a male and female connector on each end with enough wire to reach wherever you have positioned the controller.

Landing lights: Wire the LEDs in series noting the correct polarity terminating with the female connector provided.  Before you tie the wires off, test your work with a 9volt battery LED tester shown in part one of this series.  Then plug into the jumper to the controller.


The wing navigation lights are wired in series terminating in a female plug. Again, test before securing your wiring. The tail light wiring will run in the fuselage from the tail directly to the controller and plug in. At a convenient place near the wing, saddle splice in a male connector into the negative (black) wire.  This is where we will plug in the wing navigation lights. Ensure the negative side of the wing wiring joins the negative from the controller. This ensures power will flow correctly through the circuit. A bit of tape or paint on the connector can be helpful to prevent the connections from being reversed in the future.

This post was written by

Leave Your Comment