Nitecore Tube XM-L2. Its a winner now for sure [pic heavy]

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dentillozie
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Nitecore Tube XM-L2. Its a winner now for sure [pic heavy]

I really like the Nitecore Tube. I have bought more then 10 and sold them or gave them away. I have already tried to do the resistermod and adding some copper to the back of the LED as heatsink.
with those mods its really a great keychainlight for the money!
But I have always wanted it to be a little more powerfull. (Who doesn’t??).

So the idea was to swap the LED. my theory being; if i change it for a more efficient LED i get more light for the same power input.

I had some XM-L2’s on hand from swaps and it looked like the perfect candidate. not so small to solder to and not to big to fit.

I knew that doing this swap would result in a mule with a wide spread beam and no throw. But being a keychainlight, long range lighting isn’t really the use case IMO.


Let the party begin! the components, A XM-L2, a small copper strip as “cooling” and ofc the Tube.


for those who have not seen the insides of the Tube. A lot of tiny components! Get your finest solderingtip if you want to work on this light.


A close up of the board. the otherside only contains the switch.


while unsoldering the LED the pad came off.
this caused a big issue. there where no points to attach the XM-L to except a small hole that goes to the backside of the board.


Soldering the XM-L2 to the copper strip wa really easy.
I accidentally dedomed the LED when it was hot. but everything still works. so no worries.
I had to cut the copper strip because it was a little to big. Not really what i wanted because i like my LEDs cool. but there isnt a lot of current flowing into it so it should be fine.


Fast forward 3 hours; i did a lot of troubleshooting and broke a second Tube, But the mod was finally done.
There was this weird glitch where when I connected the XML directly to the output and i wanted to turn the light on it would flash very briefly. But when i would hold the switch u would turn on and act like it was in momentary.
After resoldering the original LED back the light worked well again. I think that the resistance of the XML must be to low or something. I did some tests with a 50ohm resistor in series with the XML and the light worked fine. I added a zener diode instead of the 50ohm resistor and the light still worked well and was a tad brighter so I left it like that.
I packed everything together and closed it all up.

The results;

I’m not going to say this was a big success; but I did what I was intending to do and that was to put a XM-L2 into a Nitecore Tube. This light isnt going into my pockets or even near it because of the gaping hole in the front of the naked, dedomed XM-L2. I’m even considering to revert it back to the original LED.

Some beamshots:

Stock:

XM-LTwo(be):

The difference is not that big IRL (I took all these pics with my phone) but its noticable.


the beamangle.

UPDATED 29/06/‘17

I knew i could do better after seeing what CRX did with his Tube.

I planned the mod more carefully this time. And everything went way smoother.
I found a 1 Ohm resistor on a old multimeter and used it to bridge the zenerdiode.
The output is now way higher and all functions work well.
I also swapped out the dedomed led for one with dome.

A little bit more copper would have been better. The led gets hot quick but it should be fine for short amounts of time.

Thanks for reading

Dentillozie

EU based flashlight modder. If you need any modding work done, make sure to PM me!

some of my mods:

- convoy meLd 4

XHP50 Maglite Mod

UF-1405 Mod

TK35 (clone) to TK35UE

Edited by: dentillozie on 06/29/2017 - 15:08
djozz
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I say it is an improvement Smile Thanks for showing the mod!
Perhaps you can protect the new led with a couple layers of clear nail polish?

-X3-
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IIRC CRX did one a while ago ?
That’s a nice attempt, and having a working light in the end is a little miracle TBH Smile

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dentillozie
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X3 wrote:
IIRC CRX did one a while ago ? That’s a nice attempt, and having a working light in the end is a little miracle TBH Smile

Is there a thread of his? I’m curious. I might try a second time.

EU based flashlight modder. If you need any modding work done, make sure to PM me!

some of my mods:

- convoy meLd 4

XHP50 Maglite Mod

UF-1405 Mod

TK35 (clone) to TK35UE

-X3-
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dentillozie wrote:
X3 wrote:
IIRC CRX did one a while ago ? That’s a nice attempt, and having a working light in the end is a little miracle TBH Smile

Is there a thread of his? I’m curious. I might try a second time.


I can’t find it but CRX has a dedicated thread with all his mods (that guy is really organized !), you might be able to find it Smile

"Hey -X3-, do you have a flashlight ?"   "-X3-, can I borrow one of your flashlights ?" 

My Flashlight public album (mods, emitter swaps, eye candy)

My reviews channel (French language, Olight, Thorfire : 30+ lights tested)

My personal channel (including Olight SR mini, S1, S2, S1A and S-mini disassembly)

mrheosuper
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I think xpl-hi is better choice, small footprint

Forgot my pen

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Nice mod Thumbs Up
Yeah I did a couple of these, XM-L 4C and red XR-C. I made a little hood for the XM-L so the light only shines down/ forward, dedomed the red and appled UV setting glue to protect it. Much better, I still use the red one.

Ormbett
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The Tube is one of my favourites too. Nice mod, thanks for sharing! Thumbs Up

Kind regards

MRsDNF
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Nice mod dentillozie. You have far less clumsier fingers than I. Beer

My current and or voltage measurements are only relevent to anything that I measure.

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dentillozie
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Updated OP. I tried the mod again and its a lot better now!

EU based flashlight modder. If you need any modding work done, make sure to PM me!

some of my mods:

- convoy meLd 4

XHP50 Maglite Mod

UF-1405 Mod

TK35 (clone) to TK35UE