Nitecore HC30 Issues / New Driver and LED Suggestions

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TheDude
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Nitecore HC30 Issues / New Driver and LED Suggestions

This morning I was using my Nitecore HC30 while loading my car for work and noticed that the moonlight mode was flickering, but everything else seemed fine. After getting to work I checked it out again and noticed that it had gotten worse. After checking that the end cap and head were on tight it was now only working in turbo mode and special modes. Moonlight, Low, Medium did not work at all and high was flickering dimly. I opened it up and made sure there were no shorts, reassembled and no change. I am using a protected cell but I also tried a 30Q cell and had the same issue.

Here is the light on high mode currently.

I haven’t decided yet if I should report the issue to GB or go straight to Nitecore. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

That's just like . . . your opinion man.

Edited by: TheDude on 01/20/2016 - 11:27
bugsy36
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Make sure that your rings are tight. If they are..forget about warranty. Too much hassle to deal with Nitecore and GB did sell a working light. My suggestion is spend $5 and get a driver the way you like it from Mountain

It's the simple things that we take for granted that cost us the most

Ευκαιρία λέει πιάσε με από το μέτωπο γιατί μόλις έχω περάσει δεν θα με πιάσειs

TheDude
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Here are some pictures of the head dissembled. Sorry for the low quality cell pics.

Any one know a driver that will work for this light? Looks like a 17mm driver but I don’t have my micrometer so I can’t be certain at the moment.

Thanks again,




P.S. It’s still behaving the same way after reassembly.

That's just like . . . your opinion man.

saypat
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I have one of these. I like mine! Sorry about yours. Hey, HOW did u get it apart?

thanks,

pat

djburkes
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That sucks, it throws a nice beam too. I haven’t had any problems with mine yet but I have a Xtar Warboy that started flickering on all modes while I was walking back to the car from my deer stand on Saturday. I haven’t had time to tear into it yet.

TheDude
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I used the rubberized underside of my mouse pad to press down and twist on the lens retainer ring to unscrew it. I pulled the lens, o-ring and reflector out. I then used a paper clip to gently press on the back side of the driver to un-seat it from the head. CAUTION: When I did this I found that the driver had been glued in place and now it will not seat very well. It is held in place by the battery tube once it is threaded into the head. So not a huge problem in my opinion.

The tricky part is angling the LED MPCB to get it out of the head when pulling the driver out of the head at the same time. Even trickier to get it back in.

Hope that explains it well enough. LOL

That's just like . . . your opinion man.

bugsy36
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TheDude wrote:
Any one know a driver that will work for this light? Looks like a 17mm driver but I don't have my micrometer so I can't be certain at the moment. Thanks again, !

 

http://www.mtnelectronics.com/index.php?route=product/product&path=67_11...

 

These are better than any stock setup plus you can increase or decrease current

 

They work great! Install the UI you like.

It's the simple things that we take for granted that cost us the most

Ευκαιρία λέει πιάσε με από το μέτωπο γιατί μόλις έχω περάσει δεν θα με πιάσειs

TheDude
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I have used those in several lights but wasn’t sure if it would work with this light since it uses a remote “e-switch.”

That's just like . . . your opinion man.

bugsy36
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It must have the e-switch firmware...not a standard driver. For the switch..one wire to ground and the other to star 4. 

It's the simple things that we take for granted that cost us the most

Ευκαιρία λέει πιάσε με από το μέτωπο γιατί μόλις έχω περάσει δεν θα με πιάσειs

TheDude
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That makes sense. Thanks for your help. This is probably the route I will take.

That's just like . . . your opinion man.

TheDude
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OK . . . So, it turns out the driver is 20mm, I was a bit off. I’m thinking about going with this driver with the E.Switch moppydrv firmware.

FET Driver – 20mm

Since I’m pulling the whole thing apart and rebuilding I thought it would be fun to try a different emitter as well. I just need to find a copper MPCB that will work. The current unit is aluminum and about 14 mm long, 12 mm wide and 1mm thick. I’d like to keep the same dimensions if possible. I’d also like to get one with the desired LED already mounted as re flowing is not something I feel confident in tackling.

One thought would be to cut and sand down a 16mm Noctigon like this.

I definitely want the LED to be 3V, preferably 4K-5K color range, and have a similar or wider beam pattern than stock. What do you all think? Suggestions?

That's just like . . . your opinion man.

TheDude
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Also, if a decide to reuse the LED on the stock aluminum pad would it be able to survive DD from the driver?

That's just like . . . your opinion man.

bugsy36
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I am Ok with emitter, and even upping the power on the driver, but I am not so sure about an FET in this headlamp (HC30, and H3).

The main reason I say that is because of the heat sinking but I could be wrong and there may be enough. The second reason and probably even more important is heat to the forehead, and I am not referring to getting burned. We wear our headlamps at work for hours at a time and there are times that it can feel like a heating pad on the head when running in the stock High mode.

No matter which driver you use from RMM, I can assure you that will be happy, especially with that Moppydrv Wink

It's the simple things that we take for granted that cost us the most

Ευκαιρία λέει πιάσε με από το μέτωπο γιατί μόλις έχω περάσει δεν θα με πιάσειs

TheDude
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Ya I was kind of thinking the same thing with the heat build up after doing some more research. I was only considering the FET drive because I didn’t see a 7135/linear drive in 20mm. However, I found some 17 to 20mm driver adapters on fleabay that should work; that way I could still use the 17mm QLITE driver that you originally suggested. Thanks again!

I also had a question regarding the Moppydrv firmware so I sent a message to Mountain Electronics and received this prompt response. Excellent customer service!

_Yes, it is the same as outlined here:

moppydrv is like guppy2drv for momentary switches; like guppy2drv, it offers a lot of mode groups to choose from, trying to accomodate various needs and preferences. The basic UI is similar to mokkadrv (click-on, click-off), but you can choose to switch the light on with (tap) or without (press&hold) memory.

  • A short tap switches the light on (in the previously used mode, memory) and off.
  • A press&hold cycles through the modes in the selected mode group; a press&hold from off switches the light on in the first mode of the selected group (no memory).
  • A double-click (from off or on) leads to an extra mode (see mode list). In some groups that is one of the main modes, a double-click can then be considered a short-cut to that mode.
  • A triple-click toggles lock-out: The light doesn’t react on pressing the switch any more – except for another triple-click to reactivate.
  • 8 fast clicks lead to the config menu, indicated by a blinking signal. These blinks also serve as the battery indicator. Count the blinks: It’s one blink for each 0.1V above 3.0V, so 12 blinks is full, 3-4 blinks is quite empty.
  • If you want to change the mode group, enter the config menu (8 fast taps), wait for the battery indicator blink signal, then ‘input’ more taps while the blinking signal is active, the number of taps specifies the group number (see mode list). Note that the timing is more relaxed in the config menu; you have to be swift and uninterrupted, but by far not as rapid as the 8 taps above. However you must hit the exact number of taps.
  • To configure the turbo timer, enter config menu by 8 (or more) fast taps, wait for the blinking signal, then enter turbo config mode by the according number of taps (see mode list). The light then runs at full power. Let it run for the desired time (e.g. until it gets hot; use a full battery), then tap to switch off. That time is now set for the turbo timer. Setting a time below 4 seconds disables it. The turbo timer has a maximum of about 19 or 20 minutes (this is also the default). It applies to all modes above 50% and smoothly ramps them down to 50%.
  • Low voltage protection: Whenever the battery falls below 3V under load, brightness is reduced (about half). The reduced load usually brings up the voltage a bit. When it drops below 3V again, brightness is halved again – and so on, down to a very low level. It will not switch off and leave you in complete darkness though._

That's just like . . . your opinion man.

bugsy36
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You could strip the driver you have and piggy back that off it or RMM can sell you a blank 21mm board and all you would do sand to fit. They do excellent customer service and even though I have never used Moppydrv the people that have just love it.

I think eventually RMM will offer a 21mm e-switch driver maybe even a 20mm but I am not speaking on his behalf (just speculation). There are lot and lots of the dogbone headlamps out there and people are just itching to make them "just the way they like it" so I think we will be seeing more and more of these upgrades

It's the simple things that we take for granted that cost us the most

Ευκαιρία λέει πιάσε με από το μέτωπο γιατί μόλις έχω περάσει δεν θα με πιάσειs

TheDude
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So I went with the driver that was recommended and I am very happy with it. The firmware is definitely an improvement over the original. I didn’t have a whole lot of time to do the work so I wasn’t able to get pictures of everything but I will give a recap of what it takes to put the 17mm driver in the HC30.

I wasn’t sure if I was going to have space for additional 7135s so I went with the default 8. As it turns out, there is no extra space at all on the LED side of the driver. In fact the space is so tight that the traditional “sandwich” method would not work for the 20mm piggy back board I got from RMM. I ended up having to drill and sand out the middle of the blank 20mm board. I press fit the 17mm driver into the 20mm board, laid thin copper wire in the gap between the two boards and soldered them together to create a flat surface between the two.

I then soldered one wire from the momentary switch to the outside ring of the driver and the other to PIN 2 of the MCU. I re-used the stock XM-L2 and soldered it to the leads from the driver.

While everything was apart and the LED board was loose I tested to make sure everything was functioning. I also took this opportunity to “let a little smoke out of it.” The light was on for no more than 10 seconds but since the board was not firmly seated against the head of the light the MCPCB got extremely hot and smoked the LED a bit. Oops! After final assembly it does seem like it is not quite as bright at 100% and there is a small dark area in the emitter that can be seen while in moonlight mode. So I don’t know but I’m pretty sure that I damaged the LED. I also noticed a slight inconstant flicker. Not sure if it is caused by the overheating.

Sooo . . . looks like I will be replacing the LED after all. I may also stack a few more 7135 on the battery side of the driver depending on what LED I choose.

That's just like . . . your opinion man.

Delima
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I’m mending my HC30. Just wondering, as it’s unclear to me, regarding the selection you did. Did you choose moppydrv for qlite, Increase/Reduce Driver Current 7135 set to add (8) increase output current + usd 11 and turbo timer set to guppy/moppydrv?

Cheers,

Michael