*BLF Ultimate Lantern Project*~updates:Lexel building driver prototype)

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DBSAR
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sbslider wrote:
Interest list update below, and a welcome to a few more first time posters who showed interest in this lantern. Welcome to Cpeng, jthomps123, DarkEagle205, and etienne440 with a second post here. Beer

1058 Lopan
1059 Cpeng
1060 jthomps123
1061 jthomps123
1062 saintsagan
1063 DarkEagle205
1064 Crimsonnj
1065 etienne440

interest list sorted by entry number

“interest list sorted by user names”:https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/e/2PACX-1vREtch4KpCyg64gu_BZLyISK...

Main OP list updated.)

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

mgracia85
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I don’t know if I am too late, but I am interested in one

I love my wife’s toy poodle

skroober
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I would be down for two.

Mediocre99
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Hope I’m not too late! I’m interested in one please!

Kame Sennin
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 HI

Interested in one depending on final price

asderferjerkel
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Oh boy, consider me another new signup who is totally sold on one of these. Got myself a BLF A6 to replace an ageing Fenix PD30 (had enough of RCR123As…) and now I’m hooked. Add me to the list please!

bmansc
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Add me in for one as well. Thanks!

lachesis
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I am interested in 1 as well! Smile

bd52
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I’m interested in two please!

sbslider
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bd52 wrote:
I’m interested in two please!

in addition to the three you already requested ?

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

Cpeng
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Can you add me to the list again for a total of 2 lanterns?

Thanks

WolfDiesel
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Hope everyone is doing good, definitely haven’t changed my mind about this project! I’ve started building a collection of diffusers instead of buying other lanterns. I’m only buying one, this one.

Wølf/Diesel™

Andyman
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Hi, #9 checking in! I haven’t been around here much lately, but still excited about a good lantern. I skimmed over the last several pages of the thread, and I’m a little concerned about apparent increases in the complexity of this light. Of course I don’t mind if there are options to ramp tints, brightness, mode groups, or whatever; customizability is cool. But simple operation is a VERY important point for me, and indeed one of the things that initially attracted me to this project. Will we be able to let someone borrow this lantern without a lengthy tutorial? IOW is there a “dummy mode” interface that lets someone turn the thing on or off, maybe easily toggling/ramping brightness? I just don’t want to have to write instructions on the light before letting my wife or kids use it…
Really not criticizing; I just don’t remember enough about different drivers to know what’s involved in this one, and I didn’t see a clear explanation of updated plans for operation/interface.

bmengineer
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Ok I’m intrigued enough and, after Ottawa’s recent power outage, I’m in need of something that can keep us well lit playing cards and board games with friends for a few nights.

Add me to the list for one unit, please.

ToyKeeper
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Andyman wrote:
simple operation is a VERY important point for me … Will we be able to let someone borrow this lantern without a lengthy tutorial? IOW is there a “dummy mode” interface that lets someone turn the thing on or off, maybe easily toggling/ramping brightness?

Click for on/off, hold to change brightness.

That’s all people need to know to use it. Eight words.

If you’re concerned about people getting into weird modes, you could put the lantern in muggle mode first, where it can’t do anything except the basics.

Andyman
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ToyKeeper wrote:
Andyman wrote:
simple operation is a VERY important point for me … Will we be able to let someone borrow this lantern without a lengthy tutorial? IOW is there a “dummy mode” interface that lets someone turn the thing on or off, maybe easily toggling/ramping brightness?

Click for on/off, hold to change brightness.

That’s all people need to know to use it. Eight words.

If you’re concerned about people getting into weird modes, you could put the lantern in muggle mode first, where it can’t do anything except the basics.


That’s exactly what I wanted to hear, thanks very much!
Tom Tom
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bmengineer wrote:
Ok I’m intrigued enough and, after Ottawa’s recent power outage

Interesting, not been reported here. I got stuck in Ottawa for two weeks in the ’90s with a big ice-storm. And no power. Even in the city. Helped my counterpart to keep his home running (generator running 24/7 and the sump pump to keep the basement dry)

Oh, he lived three miles up his own road (or drive as we would call it here). A bit extreme, but he had two jeeps and a big thing with a bull-dozer blade on the front. His daughter was a bit mad (one of the jeeps showed the sideways scars from some hits, but usually got lifted up again, usually, no questions asked)

She was delightful, by the way.

Is the countries power supply still so rickety ?

lmcmann
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I have two on order already, 688 and 689. I’ll try and read through the last 30ish pages of posts shortly, after being away for a while.

But. If you can switch to USB-C with a sane charging rate, I think it’s an excellent idea. I’m not interested in a frying-my-batteries rate. Just something that will use the future-proof interface for charging. If it costs a few dollars, fine by me.

I didn’t see what the expected cost is anywhere. But odds are, I’ll take at least two more. If it helps in getting an overall better price, put me down for 4 total for sure. Whatever it ends up being is fine.

Great work, take your time. I’d rather have an ultimate lantern than a faster shipping lantern.

Larry

Edit: I noticed you were going to try and open up other battery options. Awesome! I’m an EE/ME though, and I know that complexity truly sucks. 18650s are great. Others can be slightly better. Don’t hose this up trying to have too many power options. The perfect 18650 lantern is a remarkable achievement on its own.

Madtoffel
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18650 batteries are good, but the new and slightly larger 21700 cells are rapidly gaining popularity and can store up to 40% more energy (probably even more in the future as they seem to become the new standard). Also they are the same length as protected 18650s so that the only thing that we would need to change to be able to use them (at least the unprotected ones) is to make the battery tube a little wider, which isn’t adding much completely in my opinion.

Stittville Ed
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Madtoffel wrote:
slightly larger 21700 cells are rapidly gaining popularity and can store up to 40% more energy

That seems like a very good idea.
The difference could be made up with some type of sleeve.

The difference in diameter is 3MM

DavidEF
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Stittville Ed wrote:
Madtoffel wrote:
slightly larger 21700 cells are rapidly gaining popularity and can store up to 40% more energy

That seems like a very good idea.
The difference could be made up with some type of sleeve.

The difference in diameter is 3MM


Well, that’s only for one cell. According to Engineering Toolbox, in order to increase from the standard 4× 18650 tube to a 4× 21700 tube would take an increase of about 7mm in diameter. Not that it’s a big deal. For a lantern that will pretty-much always be left tail-standing, never meant to be hand-held, it can be a lot wider anyway. But, I’m hoping that’s a consideration for Mark II. This lantern is based on the existing Q8 design, so it will be Q8 sized.

Reason is not automatic. Those who deny it cannot be conquered by it. Do not count on them. Leave them alone.
-Ayn Rand

Cpeng
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Might be a stupid question as I am new here but why isn’t this driver going to be a buck boost? I think I under stand how the 7135s are being PWM switched directly and additive so you are only switching one on and off at a time but the design of 7135s is inherently inefficient compared to an actual buck-boost driver. With all the machining and materials involved is it such a big cost adder to switch to a buck-boost driver? It seems to me that with a lantern, run time is more important then with a flash light so efficiency, especially at low levels of output is important. I’d be willing to pitch in developing such a driver but its been a few years since my job required designing PCBs and programming micro controllers. Don’t get the wrong impression I just have been exclusively buying only constant current lights for a few years because I was worried about eye strain and like the idea of high efficiency. I’m hoping if this lantern keeps the 7135s there will be a mode without PWM and 4 brightnesses with each step turning on a new chip.

BlueSwordM
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Currenly, the 4×7135+4×7135 driver is well understood and can be easily implemented with tint ramping. Actually, it has already been done.

About PWM, the PWM on Anduril/NarsilM drivers is so high that literally no humans can actually even perceive it.

What you are requesting is quite hard to do. That would require a new driver, which would be easy with a switch mode power supply, but not 7135s. Only 100% full power with both tints, and 50%/CCT can be activated without PWM. Unless I’m wrong.

Finally, it’s because of cost and time to market. We don’t want to rise the final price of the lantern by too much, and we don’t want to push our deadline further. We are predicting to start production hopefully a few weeks before Christmas.

DavidEF
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Cpeng, Welcome to BLF and thanks for your input. The driver has been discussed a lot. Even specifically the question of using a buck or boost driver has been. Basically, it comes down to we’ve got what we’ve got because someone was willing to make it, and it will work quite well for our purpose. You’re more than welcome to design a buck-boost driver for us. At this point, it probably won’t make it into this lantern, but it might make it into Mark II, which will make a lot of people happy. If you share your work here, many will even use it to mod their copy of this lantern, and maybe other similar sized lights, like the Q8.

Reason is not automatic. Those who deny it cannot be conquered by it. Do not count on them. Leave them alone.
-Ayn Rand

Coscar
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BlueSwordM wrote:
We are predicting to start production hopefully a few weeks before Christmas.

Last update I saw, Den said he was still waiting to hear from Barry (I assumed still concerning design) and that was 3 weeks ago.
First time I have heard any mention of ‘production’….. THAT IS good news…..

Im not a Pessimist …. just an Optimist with a lot of experience

Cpeng
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DavidEF: I’m not trying to change this design, more just trying to understand why seemingly all BLF lights are based around a FET + 7135(s). I’m a mechanical engineer who has dabbled in electrical engineering in school and work so I’m not an expert. I can just search for buck boost circuits and they look easy enough, but I’m sure I’m missing something. I can understand for turbo output its very cost efficient to use a single fet, but this lantern won’t even be using a fet.

BlueSwordM: I’m not sure I understand your point, as I understand a buck-boost circuit can have a ramping brightness by controlling the voltage output which in turn will control the current with a PID loop. As for color shift it seems that a 4 constant current circuit with 7135s would be very similar in tint for all levels except the 0-25% brightness.

I’m not trying to offer criticism just trying to figure out why the current driver is being used. Is it cost, expertise or something else like performance or durability? Like I said I’m no expert and it may be that I would fail trying to make a buck-boost driver. I have other hobbies so I’ve been a consumer of flashlights so far as I believe I have nothing new to offer, but then I found this place…

BlueSwordM
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@Cpeng, we have 2 sets of LEDs, one with a 3000k CCT, one with a 5000k CCT. That is what makes it much more complicated. We are working to power 4 LEDs at 5000k separately, 3000k LEDs separately, and 8x LEDs at the same time, and we can individually control the power level so we get a desired tint mix color temp.

Cpeng
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@BlueSwordM, thanks for information. So you would need 3 separate buck boost drivers to control it, seems you are telling me it wouldn’t be cost effective and or too complicated for this project which is a valid reason. I’m sorry if this is somewhere in the thread. I haven’t had a chance to look through the entire thread.

Edit: I’m an idiot, just searched for “7135” in “search within this thread” and I get the answers I was looking for.

sbslider
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@ Cpeng, definitely not an idiot, you’ve not been around for long and lots has happened over the past couple years of this project. Don’t hesitate to ask questions, most of us are a cordial bunch. I don’t think anyone is being rude, but it may come across that way in text sometimes. Folks are just interested in getting this done and into our hands. I know for one that I could really use this in about a month, but don’t expect it to be ready by then.

3000th thread post Thumbs UpBeer

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

ToyKeeper
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Cpeng wrote:
just searched for “7135” in “search within this thread” and I get the answers I was looking for.

Awesome. Would be nice if all new people on BLF figured out this function so quickly. SmileThumbs Up

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