Building a little flooder

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Weird_Beard
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Building a little flooder

Hello fellow flashaholics!

I found myself returning to this forum quite often so I thought it was about time to join you!

A year ago I took everyone’s advice and I bought a beautiful little ConvoyS2+,7135*6 with a T6 4c tint and I’ve been using it non-stop since.
Fast forward today, I’m looking to build my own flashlight and I’ve stumbled upon a lot of things that I have a little knowledge about and a lot of questions, so I’m asking for your help!

Things I’m looking for:

*Small format host, something like a Convoy M1/M2 but a little bigger is not a deal breaker
*Flooder is preferable, but a thrower with bigger spill could be ok I guess
*Definitely a 18650 because I have a lot of those
*Tail switch
*Pulling at least 800 lumens without burning a hole in my pocket
*Non zoomable, not usb-rechargeable(I have a decent charger)
*Something like fins or a beefy head to help with cooling
*Not breaking the bank

Things that I found this far and I quite like are the vg15s,the sofirn sf36 and the M1/M2.
Unfortunately I don’t know a lot about driver efficiency or driver dies to match them, but I’m eager to read further upon your suggestions. Also, what Amp and mAh should I be looking? Should I look at 7135*6 and drive them little harder or go with a 7135*8 and go easy on medium? Should I buy a 3A or a 6A driver? For example, I’m really interested in the luxeon v4000 and the ld-A4 driver but I don’t know any further.

Thank you for your time and sorry for my English if there are mistakes, I’m not a native speaker!

BlueSwordM
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Would you like a Kaidomain C8.2 XHP50.2, instead of building a custom one?

The user interface is a bit dated, but still good. It uses a single 18650, a high drain one, is a bit bigger than an M1/M2, uses a boost driver, so light output is stable as the battery drains, can easily handle the emitter at full power for a long time, and using a big LED like the XHP 50.2 and an orange peel reflector, it is much more floody than a regular C8, and has a balanced beam profile at 30kcd, although a bit throwy as you said, and it uses a tailswitch.

Finally, your english is perfectly fine, don’t worry.

Just choose the emitter color and you’ll be good to go:
http://kaidomain.com/p/S026928.KDLITKER-C8_2-Cree-XHP50_2-Neutral-White-...

Weird_Beard
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Thank you for your answer and suggestions!

Although I’ ve been tempted a lot of times to join the C8-type club I think that I will have trouble carrying it in my pocket, that’s why I’m still hesitant. I’ve even considered flatting out the bezel to make it more pocketable, but I think that i’ ll keep reaching for my S2+, solely due to the size factor.
Also, i think that an xhp50 might be an overkill for most of my everyday tasks, and I would prefer a driver with more modes.
Do you happen to know if their K2 host is a M1 copy? I can’t get an answer or review anywhere!
(http://kaidomain.com/p/S026310.K2-LED-18650-LED-Flashlight-Host-130mm-x-...)
Lastly, I prefer to buy parts and build it myself because everything over 20 euros (24 dollars) is getting HEAVILY taxed in my country if imported, without any explanation whatsoever.

(Thank you for the boost driver explanation, I couldn’t figure out what those are and why some people love them so much)

Lightbringer
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A flooder? You can keep your S2+ and replace the reflector with wide-angle TIR lenses. Standard 20mm size, easy to get, drop-in as far as the S2+ is concerned.

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BlueSwordM
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The K2 is a light inspired by the M1 from the looks of it.

About the same size, just a tiny bit bigger.

Buy the K2 host:
http://kaidomain.com/p/S026310.K2-LED-18650-LED-Flashlight-Host-130mm-x-...

Buy these gaskets for the LED:
http://kaidomain.com/p/S024679.15_6mm-L-x-9_5mm-W-x-0_9mm-T-White-Plasti...

Buy this LED if you want excellent color reproduction:
http://www.kaidomain.com/p/S026300.Nichia-219C-Neutral-White-4000K-CRI92...

More brightness, but less stable output, and a bit more expensive:
http://www.kaidomain.com/p/S026596.Cree-XP-L-HD-Neutral-White-5000K-LED-...

Driver(in the 8×7135 variety):
https://www.banggood.com/Convoy-Flashlight-Driver-New-Firmware-7135×371...

Weird_Beard
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@Lightbringer I’m really satisfied with my S2+,i just wanted something stronger. Isn’t the S2+ on the “floody” side? I don’t need more flood from it,it’s fine for my needs.I want similar results with a little more output, less heat and preferably something on the same/higher CRI range. Thank you for answering!

@BlueSwordM That’s more what I had in mind!!!I have some questions about your build (if you are still patient with me).
1)Since there are no reviews about the K2,are there similar hosts somewhat more popular?
2)As I’ve read the xpl-h family is about output and the nichias are about CRI. The nichia gets about 900 lumen at 3A.Is the xplhd like a xpl hi?Is there something between nichias and xpls?
3)Is there a more efficient driver than the standard Convoy I should be looking or I should be ok with this one?
Again,thank you for your time!!!

BlueSwordM
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1. Not that I know. I would have confidence in Kaidomain however. I’ve had plenty of experience buying from them, and they are legit.

2. The difference in amount between the two is small. Even if it were between 800 lumens for the 219C and 1000 lumens for the XPL, the difference is small, and not easily noticeable. But color quality is better on the 219C, so pick that one.

3. In this case, not really, not today anyway. A boost driver requires a 6V emitter, and we have a 3V LED. A buck driver needs at least 2 cells in series. Unless you want a huge light, it is a no go.
With the driver linked, efficiency will be fine, and it has a much better user interface than the standard Convoy.

Yokiamy
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X6 triple?

Thijsco19 wrote:

a regular symptom of flasholism Big Smile

“Flasholism is the most severe form of flashlight use and involves the inability to manage your flashlight use habits. It is also commonly referred to as flashlight use disorder. Flashlight use disorder is organized into three categories: mild, moderate and severe. Each category has various symptoms and can cause harmful side effects. If left untreated, any type of flashlight use can spiral out of control.”

garrybunk
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How about the Astrolux S41 quad 219C (The 219B has been changed to the 219C.) Runs on 18350 or 18650 with an extension tube. . $24.49 is an absolute steal on this light! I just bought one for EDC duty and love it. You’d have to stay away from the high modes for stable output / runtime. I’m really loving the 219C’s!

-Garry

My Bike Lights Thread, Optics (TIR) Comparison Beamshots, Diffusion Techniques


NOTE: Moving my photos from PhotoBucket to Flickr. PM me or post in the thread if you can’t see my images and need me to fix or send a gallery link. PhotoBucket images should remain visible until November 2018.
Lightbringer
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Weird_Beard wrote:
@Lightbringer I’m really satisfied with my S2+,i just wanted something stronger. Isn’t the S2+ on the “floody” side? I don’t need more flood from it,it’s fine for my needs.I want similar results with a little more output, less heat and preferably something on the same/higher CRI range. Thank you for answering!

Are we talking about the same thing?

There’s flood (wide-angle, nice blanket of light but doesn’t “reach” very far) and there’s throw (narrow spot of light, reaches quite far but close in is an annoyingly bright spot of light like looking through a keyhole).

The S2+ is semi-floody, a sort of compromise between the two. The way you initially used the term “flood”, I was under the impression you want an actual flooder, ie, a wide swath of even light for, say, lighting up the ground in front of you as you walk, looking in a dark cupboard, etc.

The TIRs I mentioned let you customise the beam, and 60° is a nice compromise for “walking” distances. (I have a 60° TIR in my headlamp).

 

If you just want brighter, there are other lights out there that can do that. Just specify what features you’d want.

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Yokiamy
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Well, more output and less heat do not apply with the laws of physics, especially when you want higher CRI, like with nichia’s, generally they generate more heat as cree Leds.

In that case you need more mass, the Convoy M1 or M2 might just fit your needs

Or what about kaidomain’s KDIY KF8? (Djozz made a nice review on BLF)

Thijsco19 wrote:

a regular symptom of flasholism Big Smile

“Flasholism is the most severe form of flashlight use and involves the inability to manage your flashlight use habits. It is also commonly referred to as flashlight use disorder. Flashlight use disorder is organized into three categories: mild, moderate and severe. Each category has various symptoms and can cause harmful side effects. If left untreated, any type of flashlight use can spiral out of control.”

ValuseekeR
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garrybunk wrote:
How about the Astrolux S41 quad 219C (The 219B has been changed to the 219C.) Runs on 18350 or 18650 with an extension tube. . $24.49 is an absolute steal on this light! I just bought one for EDC duty and love it. You’d have to stay away from the high modes for stable output / runtime. I’m really loving the 219C’s!

-Garry

Just ordered one of these the other day, sounds like it checks a lot of the OP’s boxes.

Weird_Beard
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Wow!A lot of things to consider and even more to read.Thank you for the suggestions!

@BlueSwordM:I wanted to ask about the reputation of Kaidomain, there are a lot of things there that caught my eye.I would really appreciate the higher CRI and those nichias seem to be perfect for a future project.I’m going to look into how hard I can drive one without catching fire.
Also I was looking for THE most efficient driver I could get because I really like bigger runtime,but I guess a decent PWM without driving it to the max would be sufficient.Am I right?

@Yokiami:I didn’t know that about higher CRI so I’ll read more about the heat management.That’s what I’m willing to sacrifice,a little bigger shell for a little more output.Would you recommend a beefy led ie a XHP50.2 driven less or something like an XPL driven harder?I’m talking runtimes and heatwise.Also I really like the K8F but I hate the fins on the lower part of the shell.Perhaps I can grind them off?

@Garrybunk:That’s a nice flashlight,I really like the copper head base and the Nichias but it’s 25 usd right now and I might have trouble with customs here in Greece.I’m definitely gonna be watching for a deal and I see me buying one in the not so distant future!

@Lightbringer:I’m sorry but I’m still trying to get familiar with those terms.What I wanted to say is I’m looking for a semi floody flashlight like the S2+ with a little more output.Ideally I’m looking for a mode between my med and high (2100 driver) in a flashlight host that doesn’t heat up as fast as my Convoy on high.Runtimes are important to me,that’s why I’m seeking a beefier flashlight but still pocketable.

Lightbringer
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Wellp, you could try a zoomie like a SK98 (18650) or SK68 (14500) to tell the difference. Zoomed in to a Bat Signal picture of the LED, that’s all throw. Zoomed out to its widest, it’s a nice perfectly even blanket of light.

You can mod that, as most of them come with “hollow pills”, ie, just a ledge that the LED-on-MCPCB just rests on by its edges. Sucks as far as heat transfer, but you can use the Penny Trick (real Cu pennies or whatever you got there), filed flat and soldered into a stack, pushed into the pill from behind, etc., so the MCPCB would sit on that.

Or just play with it as-is, and just don’t push it too hard.

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khas
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I don’t know the size of you pockets Wink , but here is a quick picture of some lights :

EAGLE EYE A6 EAGLE EYE X6 Convoy M2 Convoy M1 JAXMAN M8

The X6 with the LD-B4 6Amp driver and a LUXEON V 4000K is one of my most used flashlights. Great tint and all round beam profile, and with the ability to adjust the current in UI.

The JAXMAN M8 is another perhaps more pocket friendly option, it’s not available as a host though.

Weird_Beard
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How do you find the output of the luxeon?You must be getting close to 2000lm at 6A!!!According to a review I found here I ‘ll be pretty satisfied with 900lm at 2A,plus I’ve read good things about the tint,as you said.
I really like Jaxman flashlights!Is the M8 a mini c8?

Thank you for the pics!!!

Yokiamy
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If you like Jaxman and a floody beam, why don’t you try out their E2L? they have it with Nichia as well.
I recently built a E2L triple myself, (they do sell the host) with the 4000k Nichia 219c MCPCB from jaxman with a convoy 8×7135 Biscotti driver, just because it is possible to mod it afterwards since Jaxman likes to glue up all their lights.
The tint is beautiful and the heat from the 8x driver seems to be transferred really well. (it does get quite hot after 5-10 min)

Thijsco19 wrote:

a regular symptom of flasholism Big Smile

“Flasholism is the most severe form of flashlight use and involves the inability to manage your flashlight use habits. It is also commonly referred to as flashlight use disorder. Flashlight use disorder is organized into three categories: mild, moderate and severe. Each category has various symptoms and can cause harmful side effects. If left untreated, any type of flashlight use can spiral out of control.”

Weird_Beard
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I like the looks of the E2L and the triple nichia option is really nice!It seems to be a Convoy shape with fins.I was wondering if the removal of aluminium to make the fins is better than leaving the walls thick so the heat is absorbed by the aluminium.
Could you provide some links for the host and the biscotti driver?I’m really interested in a similar build!

Yokiamy
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Fins are made to create more surface area which allow more heat transfer.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fin_(extended_surface)

http://budgetlightforum.com/node/53168
It says not available at the moment, you can always ask them (i did, they were not available at that time as well)

I bought the driver from banggood
https://www.banggood.com/nl/Convoy-Flashlight-Driver-New-Firmware-7135×...

Or the finished jaxman
https://de.aliexpress.com/store/product/JAXMAN-E2L-3LED-TIR-LENS-flashli...

Thijsco19 wrote:

a regular symptom of flasholism Big Smile

“Flasholism is the most severe form of flashlight use and involves the inability to manage your flashlight use habits. It is also commonly referred to as flashlight use disorder. Flashlight use disorder is organized into three categories: mild, moderate and severe. Each category has various symptoms and can cause harmful side effects. If left untreated, any type of flashlight use can spiral out of control.”

Weird_Beard
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I get what the fins are doing,but only if they are added outside the tube,leaving the walls thick(like a thorfire vg15s for example). My disbelief is how efficient it would be removing material in order to have fins leaving the walls thinner.
I guess I’ll have to order the full flashlight and repurpose the shell when I get bored.I also ordered the same driver for another project but mine didn’t have the “new firmare” description,so it’ll come with the standard firmware.I’ll try to find if flashing it would be possible.
Thanks again!

khas
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Weird_Beard wrote:
How do you find the output of the luxeon?You must be getting close to 2000lm at 6A!!!According to a review I found here I ‘ll be pretty satisfied with 900lm at 2A,plus I’ve read good things about the tint,as you said.

The output is great, I don’t know the exact lumen output but is enough Smile

Weird_Beard wrote:
I really like Jaxman flashlights!Is the M8 a mini c8?

Yes it’s a smaller version of the C8, the cheapest version with the XM-L2 emitter is $18 plus shipping from Aliexpress :
JAXMAN M8 flood version
Weird_Beard
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That settles it!I’m ordering 2 V4000,one for the convoy and one for a jaxman and I’ll put the Convoy’s xml2 in a bigger host to be driven at 2.8.I like the tint of the xml2,so i’m keeping it for later.
Do you have any opinion about luxeon vs xml2 tint-wise?
Thanks man!

khas
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I think tint is a very subjective thing, what to me looks like a nice neutral tint might seem warm or cold to somebody else.

I don’t have many flashlights with a XM-L2, but I really like the XM-L2 T3 7A3 3000K – 3250K CRI90 from Kaidomain

pennzy
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The Sofirn SP 32A is floody , S2 size, and more lumens. Oops, just reread your OP and I see you like tail switch.

Weird_Beard
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@khas I started looking more a higher CRI leds,so this one is right up my alley.Thanks!

@pennzy Last week I ordered a SF36,as there are a lot of great reviews for the Sofirn flashlights.The reason I wanted a tailswitch is to be able to modify it easier in case I need to change the driver.Are side-button drivers easily interchangeable?

ValuseekeR
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Nice! I bought several Sofirn lights recently. Overall they seem like an excellent value (especially considering the sale prices I paid and that most of them came with a battery and charger).

I also prefer high CRI when I can get it, but I like Sofirn’s NW emitter choices. The XP-L V6 in the SF36 is my favorite one. I feel the tint is just a bit nicer than the XP-L2’s in the SP31 and SP32A, but those aren’t bad by any means, they all work for me.

The SF36 surprised me. Outside of the BLF Q8 I’m generally looking for more compact EDC lights, but once I had the ’36 in hand it appealed to me all-around as a general utility light. As much as side switches and fancy UIs can be cool, there’s definitely something to be said for a simple tailswitch and modes that just work and don’t need to be explained before you hand it to someone.

Weird_Beard
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I started seeking for Convoy M1 hosts and after some suggestions on the forum I found similar type hosts like the Jaxman M8 and the Sofirn SF36 so I ordered what i found cheaper.Though my next order will probably be a Thorfire VG10S,which is similar to the Sofirn.A Luxeon V4000 will go in that one and a Blf A6 driver to drive it a little harder than my 2.1 Convoy!

I’m really glad that the SF-36 lives up to the hype!I am also a fan of compact EDC formats.I was worried about the available tint but your input made me realize that it can’t be too bad

pennzy
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I have the 32a and the 36 . Both very nice . A little more output with the 32a. It would be easier to change the 36 if you wanted. The 36 does have potential to be driven a little harder. The 32a is a little more compact to carry and has ramping if that turns you on . The beam is a more even flood .

Weird_Beard
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You re really tempting me with the 32a man.I was thinking about a side-switch flashlight and the 32A is really nice.How’s the switch?Does it have a better feel than the tailswitch?Are they more silent like most people suggest?

pennzy
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The switch is silent. As with all my Sofirn side switches, I glued a stainless washer around the switch to prevent accidental activation . Picked up an assortment pack at Harbor Freight. A little goop holds it firmly yet it can be removed without damage if I want to. Works great. No need to lock out now. Sofirn are good people too if you need them for anything.

Weird_Beard
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Well,no way of knowing unless I try it,so thanks for feeding my hunger!The SP33 also looks really nice,and I trust the forum about the good words for Sofirn!
So I’ll look into both of them for my first side switch!

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