2*AA side-by-side aluminum flashlight - DCF01 by Sofirn (Formerly: Resurrection of Duracell Durabeam)

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rost333
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2*AA side-by-side aluminum flashlight - DCF01 by Sofirn (Formerly: Resurrection of Duracell Durabeam)

Edit (06/20/2019):

Henk4U2 wrote:

I thought this thread was about reviving one (or some) of the iconic primitive flashlights that we remember from our youth(s)… Lights that last half a lifetime, at least in our minds…

Initially this thread was about reviving one (or some) of the iconic primitive flashlights, but after Barry’s post about the plastic light target of this tread has changed.
Now I’m trying to design 2*AA aluminum light.

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Original post:

Sofirn is recently looking for inspiration for new or updated flashlights.

From this thread: Sofirn Light: updates on current flashlights

DavidEF wrote:

…Maybe take a classic that hasn’t yet been updated to a 21700 size, and do that, and maybe add one or two very small aesthetic changes, and you will have a totally new light that’s never been done before!

Here’s another that will be a sure winner: Look at lights that have been popular over the years, but for some reason were discontinued while still fairly desirable. I’m not talking about lights that buyers got tired of, and caused sales to wane. I mean lights that people still liked, but the manufacturers decided to move on and drop them.

Resurrect an old design, update it with new internals, and maybe make very small changes to the outside to make it your own design…

So why not resurrect this Duracell’s Durabeam DFC great form factor and update it with some minor outside changes and a lot of new internals?

I think there is a room on the market for new (aesthetically and ergonomically pleasing) 2xAA EDC flashlight as there are just few true pocket friendly flashlights in this form factor.
For example: Nitecore MT22A or Manker T02
or

and those are good small EDC lights but in my opinion both of them share the same flaw in their design.
It’s a matter of ergonomics. The switch should be placed on side of the flashlight to feel just right in hand (thumb falls right on the switch) .
i.e. Energizer Compact 2-in-1 or Panther Vision PV-1000
or

and the only “handy” 2xAA flashlight on the market with properly placed switch: Sunwayman D20A.

I trust that with some help from BLF community Sofirn could come up with their version of this flashlight and update it with new internals up to today’s standards.

Personal part:
I would like to see this kind of flashlight designed by Sofirn with:

  • Compatibility with Ni-MH rechargeable batteries
  • A lack of blinking modes
  • CRI90+ anywhere from 4000K up to 5000K
Edited by: rost333 on 09/28/2019 - 20:55
PBWilson
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Sofirn already makes a light that uses a side-by-side battery tube. It’s a weapon light that uses a pair of CR123 cells. I wonder if that could be used as a platform to create something like what you are describing.

https://www.aliexpress.com/store/product/LED-Tactical-Flashlight-Waterproof-Weapon-Light-Pistol-Gun-Lanterna-TLR-1-HI-Weaponlight-Cree-XML2-Customize/2933049_32917805565.html?spm=a2g1y.12024536.productList_2629815.pic_13

teacher
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I think doing something along these lines is a great ideal. I had, still have somewhere; one of those Duracell Durabeam lights. It was a handy little companion.
Remade/redesigned with new materials, LED, & electronic internals I think it could be a definite winner…. especially marketed to the general public.

Keep it simple & a AA format, Alkileaks or NiMh…. no 14500 support at all & NO USB Charging.

Keep the UI simple & easy for anyone to use… a flashlight for the everyday consumer. I know I would buy some & know right off hand others who would also.

Please consider this Sofirn. Thumbs Up

…….

@ PBWilson …. I had not seen that Sofirn Weapon Light …. thank you for the link!! . Smile

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Well, let’s see…

I like the Nitecore Thumbs Up

I like the Energizer Thumbs Up

The Duracell would need a lot of updating, but the overall idea seems to work. Thumbs Up

Those slide style switches work a lot better with gloves than a side e-switch does. I wouldn’t mind a regular Omten reverse clicky as a side push-button switch. Getting it at the right height would be necessary. I don’t want it sticking out too far, but also not inset so far that a gloved hand can’t find it.

With led indicator lights in the button, it would look nice and be easier to find in the dark too.

For this kind of light, sure don’t need Li-Ion support or built-in charger. But a great mid-high current 2xAA boost driver would be a nice upgrade. Since it’s a side-by-side 2xAA, it doesn’t need support below 1V input like a single AA boost driver would. So, it can be made with a much stronger output.

If it’s gonna have a rectangular reflector like the Duracell light, maybe better to put two emitters in a split reflector. One could be for spot and the other for flood. With two emitters, you can get more lumens per watt too, because LEDs are more efficient at lower current. In this case, the slide switch wouldn’t be a good idea. It would be better to have a clicky and be able to turn on either one LED or the other, or both for more light. A lot of headlamps have this ability.

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I think Sofirn could really have a winner if they paid attention to a remake of the 2AA/14500 side by side light as outlined above.\

There already exists a niche market for this type of light and if done properly, the masses would beat a path to Sofirn’s door to acquire it . Manker and Sunwayman tried, but got it wrong. Move the switch as outlined above for starters and listen to BLFers to get it right. Then everybody will want one. Thumbs Up Big Smile

PS: Colors are also very important in marketing.

P33
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That sounds like a good idea.
At some point I seriously considered two of the lights showed in OP:
Manker T02 – which has that stupid Manker UI (long press for off)…
Sunwayman D20A – which was just crazy expensive for what it was.

If Sofirn could merge attractive project and their usual price point I’d defo get one. I wouldn’t mind NarsilM/Anduril running it.

SKV89
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I like the unique form factor. Make this usb C rechargeable too and easy to mod and I will buy some.

mmalive
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Pretty good idea. I would engineer flashlight to accept “ duel fuel “ cells. 18650, 16650, CR123A, RC123A. Release regular and limited editions like copper, titanium, etc….

Did not Klarus and Fenix do something like this?

Klarus RS30, Fenix L50 from a few years ago?

staticx57
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I like this idea!

hank
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I have a RayOVac 2xAA side by side sitting on my workbench right now.

I used these little 2xAA side by side lights as backups for cave crawling when I was a kid.

I recall some past discussion of these at BLF, somewhere.

rost333
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hank wrote:
I have a RayOVac 2xAA side by side sitting on my workbench right now.

I used these little 2xAA side by side lights as backups for cave crawling when I was a kid.

I recall some past discussion of these at BLF, somewhere.

You must be talking about this one: Rayovac AA Black Plastic Workhorse

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Those Duracell lights have the nostalgia factor built in. In a good execution with a sliding switch for off to brightest and decent waterproofing, they would sell in my opinion. Warm tint would be a plus!

Keep it simple, 2X AA powered for one model, see if it sells and then come out with a rechargeable version with built in 18650 and charging port.

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We had a Duracell Durabeam in one car or another for years. Till one day the batteries leaked and destroyed it. When it gave up its ghost no other durabeams of the same vintage could be found. Sad
Yes it was easy to use and hold. Not to large or small. Not expensive or cheap. Maybe a updated version would be nice. Can not beat a basic on/off switch for ease of operation. Maybe it is time to 3D print some new examples. I have not acquired a 3D printer of late.

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I used to have one of these! Must have been more than 30 years ago.

Currently owned lights:

Jetbeam Jet-IIIM | Jetbeam Jet-Ti M R2 | Solarforce L2M/L2P/L2T/T1 | 4Sevens Quark 123 | 4Sevens Quark Mini CR2 Ti | Solarstorm X2 | Convoy S2+ | Skilhunt H03 | Jetbeam Mini-1 | Amutorch AT40 Nichia 219c & XP-L HI | Emisar D4S XP-L HI 4K | Fireflies E07 XP-L HI 5K | Lumintop FW3A

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I like the Nitecore MT22, it is cheap, has a simple and functional UI, seems bombproof, and I personally am very ok with the switch on the back. I do not easily see how Sofirn can improve on it, except placing the switch in a different position.

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Wow, someone other than me likes the old AA Durabeam. I got one of those Duracell flashlights as a kid for Christmas in the early to mid 1980s. I loved it, I put it in my mouth when bicycling home at night as a kid in areas where there were no streetlights, it was my first EDC. What a great memory.

hank
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The old Duracell and RayOVac lights had different plastic shells but the same innards.

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I like it and support your idea. I had a Durabeam when I was young.

Maybe keep it simple.

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RWS34 wrote:
Wow, someone other than me likes the old AA Durabeam. I got one of those Duracell flashlights as a kid for Christmas in the early to mid 1980s. I loved it, I put it in my mouth when bicycling home at night as a kid in areas where there were no streetlights, it was my first EDC. What a great memory.

Wouldn’t that make it your MDC? Big Smile

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I like the Nitecore MT22A light as well. Get rid of the strobe, and put a nice NW emitter in it. I was going to buy a few of the Nitecores for the kids while camping, but the strobe function in the main mode group killed the deal for me. Didn’t want the kids strobing in the campgrounds.

Simple 4 mode, water proof, tail stand, and inexpensive.

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Wow, blast from the past! I had one of these as a kid, and I loved it to bits, first torch of a reputable brand that I’ve ever had. It rode in my pocket a pot and saw relentless use until the host’s plastics cracked too much to hold the black casing in place. When it gave up the ghost, the switch’s tin plate was oxidized, the reflector was more cracked than a boiled egg before peeling, and certain sections of the brown plastic were beige from elastic fatigue.

If you ask me, two LEDs (liked the “one flood, one throw” idea) driven to produce about 15-20 lumens each, with only one mode. That way a slide switch can be used and muggles will love the simplicity. And no, it should be all alkie or NiMH, no going fancy with battery formats, save that for a special model.

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This may became interesting. It seems most of serious players on flaslight market already discovered advantages of rectangular section host. On the other hand I hope the beam will not have any visible rectangularity.

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This could become an interesting project.

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Why in this age of almost endless inhome possibilities look for cooperation with established manufacturers. BLF has members with 3D-printers, and skills in AutoCad or what ever sofware you need for a 3D printer.
Use the search function Wink Ahem, my name won’t be popping up, because I posess no useful skillset.

You are a flashaholic if you are forced to come out of the closet, to make room for more flashlights.

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I have the Nitecore MT22A and I like it quite a bit. I wouldn’t care if it supported 2*14500 or not. The output possible for two AA is impressive now. That Duracell was my first flashlight as a kid. I kept it in an old army knapsack with extra batteries and an extra bulb in a medicine bottle. Good memories!

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I like the idea, would surely buy one or two…

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Pay attention, Sofirn. Group buy, group buy! This is a great idea. Simple yet very useful. I especially like the 2-LED Flood/Throw combo idea.

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I don’t have much experience with this kind of 2xAA lights, but maybe it was fun to see what they could do from this idea!
With a good UI, decent output and host resistance (and ergonomics), it might be a good stuff to offer my parents and aunts, instead of lights with 18650s! Thumbs Up

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Like the idea, classic pocket shape its time. Shape allows for many power options.

Let go for it Sofrin…… Could be a winner…….

hank
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This is also the best shape for holding in the mouth when hands are otherwise occupied.

Like using Prusik knots, climbing a slippery muddy wet rope out of a deep cave. Done that.

Anyone resurrecting the design should consider making sure it fits teeth.

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Interesting idea. I never had the pleasure of using one of those Durabeams, but having seen a few recent side-by-side lights that look interesting, including the Manker T02 and the Freelux Synergy, the form factor is starting to intrigue me.

The slider switch is a feature I sometimes think might be worth reviving in a modern, improved form. If I remember right, a lot of them had a small button on the switch that could provide momentary mode, while sliding it forward actually turned the light to constantly on. A modern take on this idea might make the button an easy to find mode-selection.

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