12v dc to 6v dc

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by PhiDor, Dec 24, 2010.

  1. PhiDor

    Thread Starter New Member

    Dec 24, 2010
    I have restored a 1939 Farmall tractor. I have headlights for it, but no tail lights yet. There is no generator on this tractor. I have a 12v deep cycle battery I carry on my Airstream Tt for general use, not the system. This battery would be perfect to run the lights for a couple of hours tops, on a hayride or what have you. What can I buy, inexpensively, and VERY SIMPLE to hook up to use this battery. The lights are old also, using 6v sealed beams. I don't envision putting on a generator or anything permanent in the near future.

    Thanks and Merry Christmas.
  2. shteii01

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 19, 2010
    Voltage divider.
  3. jpanhalt

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jan 18, 2008
    I would connect the headlights in series, instead of parallel. Same goes for tail lights. That or buy a 6Vbattery.

  4. shteii01

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 19, 2010
    That is a good idea. The two lights in series would make natural voltage divider to split 12V into 6V and 6V. Very elegant.
  5. bassplayer142

    Active Member

    Jan 2, 2007
    Ya, but two of them in series to get a 6V drop on each one. A voltage divider would work but they would need to be power resistors which is very wasteful if they are powering high power loads such as conventional light bulbs.
  6. marshallf3

    Well-Known Member

    Jul 26, 2010
    6V batteries aren't too hard to find but it would be to your advantage to convert the bulbs to 12V (they're going to fail eventually) then rig one of the mid 1970s GM alternators up to the engine to keep it charged. It's a simple one-wire alternator as in the rectifier and regulator are built in and it only takes one wire to the battery, no switching as it only comes into play when it senses a load or if the battery needs charging.

    If you search around the antique tractor websites you'll find this to be the most popular option, just a matter of mounting and getting a V-belt over to it.