FW3A, a TLF/BLF EDC flashlight - SST-20 available, coupon codes public

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cabfrank
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Disappointing, to say the least. As others have said, I should have bought a couple more early, but didn’t due to emitter options, and indecision. I hope I’m wrong, but further cheapening will probably occur, or is occurring. I bought optics already to switch out, but I will only buy more flashlights if I can find proper lenses to fit. I am not interested in any with this new optic.

Lick
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Looks like the discount is gone. I should have gotten the XPL-Hi version. Sad

Kingjohn
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acab wrote:
I have seen car manufacturers change entire global supplier agreements (these were legal contracts drafted and signed for several years) because the new parts were a few US cents cheaper. The supplier was forced to sign a new agreement. Even pennies will add up over thousands of products and SKUs.

The glass lens and Carclo optic are probably expensive, not always easy to source, and have a 100% take rate (every light sold has them/needs them, so not optional).

While most of us probably don’t want a new lens/optics combo, from an engineering point of view it is a good way to ensure an almost identical product outcome while saving a lot of money.

You could also use a cheaper aluminum source, cheaper parts for the driver, a cheaper clip or drop it entirely, re-design the inner tube and make it skinnier and a more permanent part of the assembly, replace the metal switch with a rubber boot, and do a lot more!

Big Smile

If Toyota would do this with their cars, they would end up selling Ladas and no longer Toyotas!

Umpi2000
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ToyKeeper wrote:
Umpi2000 wrote:
Anyone got an idea when the colorful ones will be for sale? I really want that blue!

Not sure, but probably pretty soon I think.

I got two of the color samples today — purple and white. Both are just like they appear in the pictures. Purple looks really good, especially with a black clip installed. White is nice also, and has sort of a grainy texture. So I assume it uses a different process than regular anodizing. Like most white things, it may be difficult to keep clean.

Hopefully I can get some decent pictures tomorrow.

Thank you TK, the blue and maybe the white are my picks. I thought I wanted the copper but it’s apparently only raw Polished finish without a coating so I think I’ll be too hard on the light and it’ll end up looking natty Big Smile
Gosh and now reading about he changes to the lens and optic setup it’s a bit of a downer that I gifted 3 of the 4 I ordered, should have kept the originals and gifted the new models haha

Kavin
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This sucks. I hope I can add an optic and lens to my existing (pre)order.

Klayking
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Aye, I’m in the same boat and I sent Neal an email about this. Might be a good idea for you to do the same.

contactcr
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BLF A6 – actually got better with time (double springs)
BLF Q8 – long term reliable product (Sofirn gave us new LED options too)
FW3A – 1 month in and ???

zak.wilson
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Maybe Thorfire/Sofirn would be interested in a group buy for a popular, relatively easy to manufacture design… they even have LH351Ds.

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teacher
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Firelight2 wrote:
In theory the new optic should produce slightly higher lumens. No light is being lost from a lens. It’s all going through the one optic.

However, it’s not surprising that we here on this forum much prefer the glass lens (for scratch resistance) combined with the flexibility of being able to swap in any Carclo optic.

snip …….

TK verifies that no lumens are lost, but candela is indeed reduced.

http://budgetlightforum.com/comment/1517890#comment-1517890

ToyKeeper wrote:
A sample of the new optic showed up today and I measured it. It seems to have no effect on total lumens, but the candelas are reduced to about 79% of the original 10511+glass design. It is more floody than 10511, but not quite as floody as 10508.

The new optic significantly reduces tint changes in different parts of the beam, so it looks like it’s a single color.

A first-batch FW3A weighs 51.9 g, while the new sample weighs 51.3 g. Not sure how much variance there is, but the new optic seems to eliminate about half a gram.

I haven’t tested waterproofing or heat tolerance or scratch resistance.

The MCPCB hasn’t changed, so Carclo optics should still fit. But the new optic replaces both the old optic and the glass, so people would need to buy a glass lens to install a standard Carclo optic. I’m not sure where to get a plain glass lens of the right size, or where the best places are to buy a 10511 optic, so links would probably help.

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CLB
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zak.wilson wrote:
Maybe Thorfire/Sofirn would be interested in a group buy for a popular, relatively easy to manufacture design… they even have LH351Ds.

Agreed. Or maybe BLF should talk to Gene Malkoff: I know he has been toying with a programmable light. Yes, it would be over $100, but . . . Oh, I’m kidding. Maybe.

Chuck

trakcon
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ToyKeeper wrote:
A sample of the new optic showed up today and I measured it. It seems to have no effect on total lumens, but the candelas are reduced to about 79% of the original 10511+glass design. It is more floody than 10511, but not quite as floody as 10508.

The new optic significantly reduces tint changes in different parts of the beam, so it looks like it’s a single color.

A first-batch FW3A weighs 51.9 g, while the new sample weighs 51.3 g. Not sure how much variance there is, but the new optic seems to eliminate about half a gram.

I haven’t tested waterproofing or heat tolerance or scratch resistance.

The MCPCB hasn’t changed, so Carclo optics should still fit. But the new optic replaces both the old optic and the glass, so people would need to buy a glass lens to install a standard Carclo optic. I’m not sure where to get a plain glass lens of the right size, or where the best places are to buy a 10511 optic, so links would probably help.

TK, were you able to see if there were any other quiet changes, like to the driver or switch assembly?

iamlucky13
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In the midst of all the concerned discussion, I do want to thank Neal for bringing the change to our attention. I hope Lumintop listens to the feedback he has collected.

zak.wilson wrote:
The thing is, this is not a product Lumintop designed themselves. If Lumintop wants to change the design of say… the Tool AA, that’s fine as long as they don’t describe the old one to customers and send the new one.

Instead of the Tool AA, you could have mentioned the Tool AAA, advertised as available with a 219B emitter, but as far as I know, has actually been shipping with a 219C (although like the FW3A, reported to be a decent tinted one), for over a year:
http://www.lumintop.com/tool-ti.html

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teacher
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contactcr wrote:

BLF A6 – actually got better with time (double springs)
BLF Q8 – long term reliable product (Sofirn gave us new LED options too)
FW3A – 1 month in and ?
Somewhat sad isn’t it . Facepalm . Sad

zak.wilson wrote:
Maybe Thorfire/Sofirn would be interested in a group buy for a popular, relatively easy to manufacture design… they even have LH351Ds.
There’s a thought. Beer . A great thought in fact.
If Lumintop won’t play ball… find a manufacturer that will. Thumbs Up

You never know how a horse will pull until you hook him up to a heavy load./"Bear" Bryant 

 .................................. "Slow is Smooth, Smooth is Fast" ...................................

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         Rudeness Level _ mΩ _ {width:70%} _ LightWiki _ LED Tint Chart  

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cabfrank
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Different optic and code no longer valid, is that correct?

cabfrank
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Two years in the making and less than two months before the changes start. Hmm.

sp5it
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Lucky me, bought in time.
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teacher
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iamlucky13 wrote:
In the midst of all the concerned discussion, I do want to thank Neal for bringing the change to our attention. I hope Lumintop listens to the feedback he has collection (collected).
+1…. Thumbs UpThank you Neal!! . Beer

You never know how a horse will pull until you hook him up to a heavy load./"Bear" Bryant 

 .................................. "Slow is Smooth, Smooth is Fast" ...................................

       Texas Lumens Flashlights / M4D M4X Deals : sign up - save $$$$  

         Rudeness Level _ mΩ _ {width:70%} _ LightWiki _ LED Tint Chart  

      Xlamp size chart _ BatteryU _ Flashaholic? Need Professional Help???            TheOriginal _ TAB _ LightSearch _ BatterySearch _ 14500's _ DiCal 

 

                                             

trakcon
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teacher wrote:
iamlucky13 wrote:
In the midst of all the concerned discussion, I do want to thank Neal for bringing the change to our attention. I hope Lumintop listens to the feedback he has collection (collected).
+1…. Thumbs UpThank you Neal!! . Beer

Yes, definitely. Thank you, Neal, for telling us about the change! Thumbs Up

BlueSwordM
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Well, with all of this in mind, I’ll just go get an Emisar D4/FF E07 instead.

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http://budgetlightforum.com/node/67401
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Thank you indeed, Neal. Very nice of you to let us know about the change.

iamlucky13 wrote:
the Tool AAA, advertised as available with a 219B emitter, but as far as I know, has actually been shipping with a 219C (although like the FW3A, reported to be a decent tinted one)

Indeed, I bought a Tool Ti that was explicitly advertised as 219B, but to my disdain arrived with a 219C. Fortunately, it’s a really good 219C and it remains one of the best tinted emitters in my collection today. I unfortunately can’t say the same about the green 219Cs that came in my Emisar D4.
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Yep,thanks for the heads up Neal.
So I order the SST-20 with a turboglow gasket that fits FW3A and the carlco 105xx optic. What’s going to work and what’s not going to work? I really do want the ar coated lens and the original optic.

cabfrank
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I suppose you could get the sapphire lens available on Neal’s site, but, in my opinion, sapphire is not the best material for a flashlight lens.

SamHaLeKe
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Neal wrote:
Lumintop change the optics, The beam is pretty though. smooth, and it has good color consistency from Selene's sample. They already assembly to the FW3A, so if some one not accept this, let me know. I also have "10507 optics and sapphire lens in sell. ":https://www.nealsgadgets.com/search?type=product&q=FW3A

Hi Neal, jus to let you know I don't accept this for my ordered copper version (order 5240) and would rather have the original Carclo Optics 10511 with AR Coated Glass (just like the original version please), as it was stated on your website when making the order. Thank you!

Beer

 

- SAM -

xevious
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I feel badly for Neal. Talk about “bait and switch”… it was done to him first and foremost. No heads up / warning? He just gets a light to discover the change. Mind you, ToyKeeper did alert us to the possibility of an optic change, which many of us here reacted to with “Please, NO!”. Then, less than 2 weeks later, this happens.

Excellent point made about Lumintop not having to do any of the design engineering for this light. They were given the blueprints already complete and probably even all the supplier sources lined up. Naturally, they make less money because of the design licensing. But hey… you get paid for your efforts, right?

I also think it’s in very poor form for Lumintop to have done this. I really don’t see the cost advantage here, given the volume. This is a “niche” flashlight. It’s not even broken out into mainstream promotion yet. If they make just a thousand dollars or so more profit over the course of the production, that’s not really enough to warrant this change, by cheapening the light.

They need to understand that because this was a BLF project initiative, there’s a community behind it that is sensitive to changes. Acknowledge this mistake.

EDIT: I see Neal is offering parts, thankfully. The optic price isn’t bad, but with glass it adds up to another $7.50 USD. A bit much… but at least it means the original design is still in reach.

I’ll cherish my original release FW3A and look forward to the next BLF project… hopefully not contracted out to Lumintop. After all, remember all the QC issues we faced. Lumintop was really slipshod on this, compared to other makers.

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cabfrank wrote:
Two years in the making and less than two months before the changes start. Hmm.
To be fair, Lumintop delivered what was requested for the Group Buy.

Any changes they make after the group buy is done is up to them.

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Neal wrote:
I will talk with lumintop tomorrow morning, and will ask them if they can do something to fix this. Give me some time now.

Thanks Neal, we all appreciate it! Smile

Beer

 

- SAM -

cabfrank
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I feel bad for Neal that he is in the middle of this. He is trying to do the right thing, and it may cost him sales. It is not fair to him, and he is probably not happy about it, just like us.

Edit: xevious, your post came in just before mine, and it seems we agree.

contactcr
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Firelight2 wrote:
cabfrank wrote:
Two years in the making and less than two months before the changes start. Hmm.
To be fair, Lumintop delivered what was requested for the Group Buy.

Any changes they make after the group buy is done is up to them.

The whole light is theirs. They took liberties with the LEDs, clip, anodizing, etc. Just because they can doesn’t mean they should.

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Firelight2 wrote:
cabfrank wrote:
Two years in the making and less than two months before the changes start. Hmm.
To be fair, Lumintop delivered what was requested for the Group Buy.

Any changes they make after the group buy is done is up to them.

This was not done after the group buy. I just ordered 5 – sst20’s when they became available as my group buy commitment (as was promised) and now they will have a crap optic

cabfrank
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Yes, after two years in the making, the cheapening changes began in less than two months. I don’t see it as fair, but others may see it differently.

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