I found this how-to today on the great Popular Science web site.
Now that I’ve read through the article – I am amazed that I’ve never seen these instructions written up before.
Theodore Gray, who authors their popular “Gray Matter” column, gives the full scoop on the basic materials used to construct LEDS and provides the basic instructions needed to see just how LEDS work.
OK, it is not so easy to find some synthetic silicon carbide (carborundum) laying around, but surely everyone could get their hands on some sandpaper, needles, a 9V battery and a snap. Follow his instructions, and VOILA…you’ve recreated the basic principles behind the creation of LEDS.