*BLF LT1 Lantern Project* (Post #5354 Production design ready!

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bmengineer
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Hate to add to the peanut gallery again, but I don’t personally see the value of having two separate LED color temps. If I want warmer or cooler LEDs than what the lantern comes with, I’d rather swap them myself instead of having two that stay off all the time. This just sounds like what cheap headlights and some Nitecores do with a primary cool white emitter and secondary warm white ‘reading light’.

Personally, I can’t see why I would switch back and forth – but that’s just me. On the other hand, for those people that need a red light, it would be easy to mod the color temp they don’t like with red emitters as well. Either way, I really like the way this is coming along. Can’t wait to see production prototypes and hear more about release dates and prices!!

Find all my reviews of flashlights and more gear at www.bmengineer.com

ToyKeeper
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Adding more physical buttons, even if they’re simple toggle switches along the LED wires, makes the host more complicated. I can’t rule it out as a possibility, but one button is easier to do than two or three. It already has spots taken by the e-switch and USB port(s).

I have found color changing to be a useful feature on light bulbs sometimes, and I frequently mix tints in light fixtures to produce a better result than any single tint alone, so I can see the appeal of being able to blend. But I have no idea if that’ll happen on this lantern.

In any case, it’s possible, and there are at least four different ways to do it… but it has not been a consideration before today.

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ToyKeeper wrote:
I’m not sure how physically feasible it is to put a stack of 7135 chips on the FET pad. With the 7135’s middle/wide pin up, IIRC, that means from left to right the pins are LED-, GND, PWM. Meanwhile, the FET has four pins and a big pad. The three leftmost pins are GND, the right pin is PWM, and the big pad is LED-.

Adding a Moonlight Special driver as a slave board might be an option, for testing. Or a slave board with only 7135 chips on it, wired to/from the Q8’s FET pad. Or using a FET+N+1 Q8 driver without the FET. Texas_Ace made a nice 46mm one:

https://oshpark.com/shared_projects/tEWsX9HP
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/48447

Or Lexel sells some pre-made:

http://budgetlightforum.com/node/59724

He might even be willing to put Anduril on it. The ramping table will be a bit messed up with the second power channel so low… so it’d probably be a good idea for me to make a special build for it.

Thank you for the expertise & help on this! – I have removed the FET from the Q8, and piggy-backed on a 105C driver board, (stripped of all its components except for three AMC7135 regulators, and remote wired them in to the Q8 driver, so now after testing the maximum amp draw is 1.05 amps on maximum mode. The V2 lantern prototype is now alive & running. Smile

photo below showing the piggy-backed 105C board with three 7135s in place of the FET.

Driver wired back into the light, ( i encased the 105C 7135 carrier in a shrink tube casing for insulation)

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

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UPDATES, May,8,2018

- The V2 BLF Lantern prototype is now up & running! First tests are underway, (with measurements, comparisons to the V1 and other lanterns, etc.)

- I have yet to still install the TP4056 charger board & plug port, and wire than into the Q8 driver so it can be charged up via Solar panels, wall plug, or vehicle port like the V1 has. I may also change the green switch boot LEDs to a amber or orange LEDs, so that can serve better as a nightlight/firefly option when the lantern is off. SO far, the V2 seems to be slightly brighter on high mode (using the 5-mode group of the Q8 driver, & on high its drawing 1.05 amps from the four 18650 cells, which will give this lantern a run time average of 15 + hours , at around 600 ~ 650 lumens on high mode, using four 3500 mah cells from previous testing at that amp range in the V1 lantern & other modded lanterns i have.
Right now, the V2 has two 3000K XP-L 7A emitters, which gives it a more incandescent light similar to a regular filament light bulb, close to that of a 50 watt incan on high. ( the V1 currently has a single 4000K XP-L emitter.

( photos coming soon showing the smoother & more even light emittance of the V2 over the V1 with the new frosted main single globe/lens & dual emitters.)

- A new basic blueprint & design drawing is under way as well, which will need to be created as a finalized CAD for Thorfire to have the base to work from towards a production version. As for the final driver design & workings to add the charger option, that will require the help of those knowledgeable in that field, as ToyKeeper has worked on adding the Candle-mode and sunset mode for the lantern.

Below Showing the BLF Lantern V2 (on the left in the photo) giving first light, (on the Low mode) along side the V1 lantern on low mode.

Below you can see the warmer tint 3000K of the two XP-L emitters of the V2 on the left, , versus the 4000K single XP-L in the V1 on the right.

Below you can see the new V2 prototype is slightly shorter & more compact than the V1 version. (also the V2 has a new lanyard design where the paracord stays outside the lantern head, making it more sealed.
The actual Lantern blueprint will have some of the body fins removed to slim it down and lighten its weight, ( as all the fins are no longer needed to cool that mid-section area like it does in the Q8 flashlight does, also the head will have some fins added to help with cooling the LEDs.

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

O26Rcr
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Looks awesome, DBSAR! One step closer! Smile

ToyKeeper
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DBSAR wrote:
now after testing the maximum amp draw is 1.05 amps on maximum mode.

On a related note, the hardware should be able to do 1.4 A, but Narsil expects a FET so it turns off the 1×7135 channel on the highest mode. So the resulting power is 1.05 A instead.

This can, of course, be fixed in firmware. But as is, the highest power would actually be one step short of the highest smooth ramp level. If you put it in smooth ramp mode and ramp up, it should get brighter until the very end of the ramp, when it suddenly steps down a bit.

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Can i buy two if the price is great?

DBSAR
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ToyKeeper wrote:
DBSAR wrote:
now after testing the maximum amp draw is 1.05 amps on maximum mode.

On a related note, the hardware should be able to do 1.4 A, but Narsil expects a FET so it turns off the 1×7135 channel on the highest mode. So the resulting power is 1.05 A instead.

This can, of course, be fixed in firmware. But as is, the highest power would actually be one step short of the highest smooth ramp level. If you put it in smooth ramp mode and ramp up, it should get brighter until the very end of the ramp, when it suddenly steps down a bit.

That is exactly what i measured, was 1.05 amps on maximum mode, but i discovered something as its running now to test heat, i discovered it “steps down” from the highest mode to the next lower mode after 5 minutes, ( when its using the modes-groups) Is this something that was programmed in the Narsil firmware? if it is, can it be disabled? I am thinking of adding a fourth 7135 to the remote board to increase maximum output a little more to test, but need to get around the step-down issue on the Q8 driver first.

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

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Newlumen wrote:
Can i buy two if the price is great?

I can add you to the interest list for two.

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

ToyKeeper
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DBSAR wrote:
i discovered it “steps down” from the highest mode to the next lower mode after 5 minutes, ( when its using the modes-groups) Is this something that was programmed in the Narsil firmware? if it is, can it be disabled?

Yes, Narsil has a timed step-down by default. You can turn that off though. It’s… er, in the manual somewhere. I can never remember the config mode usage without the manual in front of me.

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ToyKeeper wrote:
DBSAR wrote:
i discovered it “steps down” from the highest mode to the next lower mode after 5 minutes, ( when its using the modes-groups) Is this something that was programmed in the Narsil firmware? if it is, can it be disabled?

Yes, Narsil has a timed step-down by default. You can turn that off though. It’s… er, in the manual somewhere. I can never remember the config mode usage without the manual in front of me.

I just been reading through the manual & found out how to disable the step down. Now it stays on all modes. Smile

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

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DBSAR wrote:
Newlumen wrote:
Can i buy two if the price is great?

I can add you to the interest list for two.

Look good. Thanks.

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Hi dbsar, as said on post number 116 I am still interested in 2 laterns. Pls put me down on the Interest list.
by the way, I am very happy to see that progress in your latern project. Thank you for your time and work!

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DBSAR, please count me in for one please.

The lantern looks great and I certainly appreciate all the work you and the team have put in it. Thumbs Up

Move towards the light.

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DBSAR wrote:
I may also change the green switch boot LEDs to a amber or orange LEDs, so that can serve better as a nightlight/firefly option when the lantern is off.

I really like this idea.

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DBSAR wrote:
I may also change the green switch boot LEDs to a amber or orange LEDs, so that can serve better as a nightlight/firefly option when the lantern is off.

I love that idea. I really hate finding the on/off button in the dark. That’s why I usually put a glow in dark sticker next to it on my lantern/lights, but the glow doesn’t lasted too long.

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Add me to the list as interested in a second lantern please.

PocketSammich wrote: I don’t need this, but I want it. Please sign me up.

fixed it
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Please add me to the list. I don’t have much time to be around here these days but I can’t miss this!

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Excellent! I hope the firmware is changed to use all 7135’s on the highest mode, rather than leaving off the +1 channel like it does for the FET currently. For just three or four 7135’s (or even five, if another is added to the slave board too) I don’t think any fins are needed at all for the LEDs to stay cool. After all, with 5× 7135 on max, it’s only about 5.3w to 2x XP-L HD. Five watts won’t heat up much, will it? If fins are added, I think it would look better to have them arranged radially on the top heatsink.

The Cycle of Goodness: “No one prospers without rendering benefit to others”
- The YKK Philosophy

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dealgrabber2002 wrote:
DBSAR wrote:
I may also change the green switch boot LEDs to a amber or orange LEDs, so that can serve better as a nightlight/firefly option when the lantern is off.

I love that idea. I really hate finding the on/off button in the dark. That’s why I usually put a glow in dark sticker next to it on my lantern/lights, but the glow doesn’t lasted too long.

The Q8 host already does have the lighted button. DBSAR would just be switching it from the stock green LEDs to amber or orange for better use as a firefly or night-light, rather than just an indicator/locator light. On my Q8, the green is very bright and easy to find, so even if the amber/orange turns out to be less bright, it will still be plenty. Wink

The Cycle of Goodness: “No one prospers without rendering benefit to others”
- The YKK Philosophy

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DavidEF wrote:
dealgrabber2002 wrote:
DBSAR wrote:
I may also change the green switch boot LEDs to a amber or orange LEDs, so that can serve better as a nightlight/firefly option when the lantern is off.

I love that idea. I really hate finding the on/off button in the dark. That’s why I usually put a glow in dark sticker next to it on my lantern/lights, but the glow doesn’t lasted too long.

The Q8 host already does have the lighted button. DBSAR would just be switching it from the stock green LEDs to amber or orange for better use as a firefly or night-light, rather than just an indicator/locator light. On my Q8, the green is very bright and easy to find, so even if the amber/orange turns out to be less bright, it will still be plenty. Wink

It’s also the sleep effect of amber/yellow light, (it does help with falling asleep as yellow/amber light help the Circadian rhythm for sleeping, and blue light is the opposite & makes sleep more difficult.

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

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DavidEF wrote:
Excellent! I hope the firmware is changed to use all 7135’s on the highest mode, rather than leaving off the +1 channel like it does for the FET currently. For just three or four 7135’s (or even five, if another is added to the slave board too) I don’t think any fins are needed at all for the LEDs to stay cool. After all, with 5× 7135 on max, it’s only about 5.3w to 2x XP-L HD. Five watts won’t heat up much, will it? If fins are added, I think it would look better to have them arranged radially on the top heatsink.

Its likely the production driver for the lantern will have a different trace pattern to use four AMC7135, ( with a 5th & 6th likely left open for those who want to mod it more) and hopefully a new firmware can be developed for the lantern that runs with those, and some added special modes.

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

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DavidEF wrote:
Excellent! I hope the firmware is changed to use all 7135’s on the highest mode, rather than leaving off the +1 channel like it does for the FET currently.

Yeah, already done. He just doesn’t have the tools needed to reflash firmware, so proto2 is currently running stock Q8 firmware.

DBSAR
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ToyKeeper wrote:
DavidEF wrote:
Excellent! I hope the firmware is changed to use all 7135’s on the highest mode, rather than leaving off the +1 channel like it does for the FET currently.

Yeah, already done. He just doesn’t have the tools needed to reflash firmware, so proto2 is currently running stock Q8 firmware.

Thats great to hear on the firmware. What modes & groups have you set in the program? Once we can get a finalized driver that uses the 7135s, ( and hopefully either has the USB charging on board, (or wired for that to be a secondary board if needed) My skills are lacking when it comes to program flashing chips in that way, ( or have the tools as you mentioned.

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

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DBSAR wrote:
DavidEF wrote:
Excellent! I hope the firmware is changed to use all 7135’s on the highest mode, rather than leaving off the +1 channel like it does for the FET currently. For just three or four 7135’s (or even five, if another is added to the slave board too) I don’t think any fins are needed at all for the LEDs to stay cool. After all, with 5× 7135 on max, it’s only about 5.3w to 2x XP-L HD. Five watts won’t heat up much, will it? If fins are added, I think it would look better to have them arranged radially on the top heatsink.

Its likely the production driver for the lantern will have a different trace pattern to use four AMC7135, ( with a 5th & 6th likely left open for those who want to mod it more) and hopefully a new firmware can be developed for the lantern that runs with those, and some added special modes.


The +1 channel is going to produce the greatest efficiency (hence runtime) for those who can use the amount of light emitted from only 350mA. Wink

The Cycle of Goodness: “No one prospers without rendering benefit to others”
- The YKK Philosophy

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DBSAR wrote:
Thats great to hear on the firmware. What modes & groups have you set in the program?

It allows the user to set whatever mode group they want. At least, it lets them set the brightness of the lowest and highest level, and how many total steps there should be. The in-between levels will be spaced evenly on a visually-linear scale.

We haven’t really discussed yet what the defaults should be, but that should wait until after the driver is ready and we’ve had a chance to do some testing.

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ToyKeeper wrote:
DBSAR wrote:
Thats great to hear on the firmware. What modes & groups have you set in the program?

It allows the user to set whatever mode group they want. At least, it lets them set the brightness of the lowest and highest level, and how many total steps there should be. The in-between levels will be spaced evenly on a visually-linear scale.

We haven’t really discussed yet what the defaults should be, but that should wait until after the driver is ready and we’ve had a chance to do some testing.

good points Smile

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

Yohan110
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I am in for one depending on the price.

blueb8llz
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These are looking awesome. I think some of my family members could appreciate this lantern very much.
If I can add 6 more to my name. That would be great! I’m #37

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blueb8llz wrote:
These are looking awesome. I think some of my family members could appreciate this lantern very much. If I can add 6 more to my name. That would be great! I’m #37

added. Smile

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

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