TLF/BLF/Lumintop FW3A review (18650, 3x XP-L HI cool white)

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teacher
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funkychateau wrote:
LOL Teacher, I can handle a little sarcastic jab. But it does seem that I keep responding to the same notions over and over, from new folks that haven’t read previous posts. And if I disappear for a few days, or even a week, it’s not part of a plan. I just have a pretty busy life offline.

However, this notion that we should never accommodate button tops because doing so encourages a bastard battery configuration that “shouldn’t even exist” (because the e-cig community doesn’t use them) is a new angle …

And responding quite well I might add funkychateau. If you are not an attorney… I think you could be. And probably a darn good one too…. Big Smile .. Thumbs Up

Heck, I do not ever use buttontops unless a light absolutely requires them (think Q8); but your ‘arguments’ (reasons) even got me to thinking for a bit. Then I shook off your mesmerizing & got back on track. Big Smile

Good reading for sure my friend….
Take care…. Beer

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emarkd
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WalkIntoTheLight wrote:
DB Custom wrote:
Uh, totally wrong advice to throw a li-ion cell in a bucket of water! Lithium reacts with water and burns! No NO No!

It’s my understanding that there is no lithium metal in lithium-ion cells. So, it shouldn’t react with water. Well, that’s my understanding, but I’ve never tried it.

Lithium primary cells do contain lithium metal, so I could see how those might react.

Not my discussion so excuse the interruption, and I am not a chemist by trade, but I wouldn’t be taking that chance either. Elemental lithium is highly reactive, like you said, but many lithium-ions are too. My recollection from Chem1212, which granted was a long time ago, is that the lithium ions are going to react with the water pretty quickly, resulting in some sort of lithium oxide while releasing lots of hydrogen gas. This would be highly exothermic too, so lots of heat. Hydrogen gas + heat = bad news.

Besides that, I think the original premise here was that a bucket of water could be used to “put out” or otherwise contain a runaway li-ion cell, and that’s a faulty position from the outset. You won’t be stopping that internal lithium reaction with water. Its not going to stop until its out fuel/energy. So even if the water doesn’t make it worse (which I’m not convinced is true), its not really going to help either. You’ll still have a runaway li-ion cell on your hands…just now its wet.

So please, anyone who comes along reading this and decides to take some side cutters and a dremel to their stack of 18650s for any reason, do it outside. Away from everything you value. Because if something goes wrong you really only have one recourse — run away and let it burn itself out. A dead brown spot in the lawn is going to be best case here, I think.

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JasonWW wrote:
nobody wrote:
JasonWW wrote:
Just remove the button top. It’s easy.

I have some protected button tops that I should not have ordered. I’m also quite new to all of this. Can you point me to an article or video that gives instructions on how to change these to unprotected flat tops?



Oops, I was thinking of removing just button tops. It’s a little more complicated removing protection circuits. Some circuits are on the positive end and some are on the negative/bottom end

For these types of cells you might need new wrappers and a heat gun/hair dryer.

You first have to carefully remove the outer wrapper. Be cautious around that metal strip running up the side.

Once I removed all of the extra circuitry and deburred any areas that were sticking out or sharp, I added a new wrapper to it.

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teacher
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I’m with DB Custom, emarkd, & whoever else. If ‘your’ not very confident you can do this properly…… DO NOT do it.

Spend $5 & buy yourself a flat top 30Q. (or whatever cell you like) Thumbs Up

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

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WalkIntoTheLight
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emarkd wrote:
WalkIntoTheLight wrote:

It’s my understanding that there is no lithium metal in lithium-ion cells. So, it shouldn’t react with water. Well, that’s my understanding, but I’ve never tried it.

Lithium primary cells do contain lithium metal, so I could see how those might react.

Not my discussion so excuse the interruption, and I am not a chemist by trade, but I wouldn’t be taking that chance either. Elemental lithium is highly reactive, like you said, but many lithium-ions are too. My recollection from Chem1212, which granted was a long time ago, is that the lithium ions are going to react with the water pretty quickly, resulting in some sort of lithium oxide while releasing lots of hydrogen gas. This would be highly exothermic too, so lots of heat. Hydrogen gas + heat = bad news.

Could be. But, if the battery is already on fire, it’s burning already.

Quote:
Besides that, I think the original premise here was that a bucket of water could be used to “put out” or otherwise contain a runaway li-ion cell, and that’s a faulty position from the outset.

No, I never meant to imply that. Lithium-ion cells contain their own oxidizer, so they don’t need oxygen to burn. Throwing it in a bucket of water hopefully contains the fire, and will help cool the cell. The latter being important if it’s just getting very very hot and hasn’t caught fire yet.

Anyway, don’t mess with cells if you’re not smart about it. But let’s not overstate the risk. The only way you’re going to cause a fire is if you puncture the cell. An accidental 1-second short isn’t going to do it.

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teacher wrote:

Spend $5 & buy yourself a flat top 30Q. (or whatever cell you like) Thumbs Up

This. All day.
It’s just not worth messing around.

DB Custom
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Remember the times when the Airlines would not deliver Li-ion cells? Because of fires on planes? This was because of the vape folks ordering liquid’s for their vape unit and Li-ion cells together… when packaged poorly the containers of liquid got broken and the wet Li-ion cells combusted… in the cargo hold of the airplane. Wet Li-ion cells are just bad news. period.

Don’t teach people HOW to mangle a potentially lethal cell, teach them NOT to.

Or be sure your bank account is padded so when they screw up and sue you for the damages you can handle it. Wink

nobody
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teacher wrote:
I’m with DB Custom, emarkd, & whoever else. If ‘your’ not very confident you can do this properly…… DO NOT do it.

Spend $5 & buy yourself a flat top 30Q. (or whatever cell you like) Thumbs Up

Thanks everybody for the information on how to do it and why it’s best for me, that I shouldn’t do it.

funkychateau
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teacher wrote:
funkychateau wrote:
LOL Teacher, I can handle a little sarcastic jab. But it does seem that I keep responding to the same notions over and over, from new folks that haven’t read previous posts. And if I disappear for a few days, or even a week, it’s not part of a plan. I just have a pretty busy life offline.

However, this notion that we should never accommodate button tops because doing so encourages a bastard battery configuration that “shouldn’t even exist” (because the e-cig community doesn’t use them) is a new angle …

And responding quite well I might add funkychateau. If you are not an attorney… I think you could be. And probably a darn good one too…. Big Smile .. Thumbs Up

Heck, I do not ever use buttontops unless a light absolutely requires them (think Q8); but your ‘arguments’ (reasons) even got me to thinking for a bit. Then I shook off your mesmerizing & got back on track. Big Smile

Good reading for sure my friend….
Take care…. Beer

Lawyering might be fun, but difficult to handle being the butt of so many bad jokes.

I used to be a professional nerd, running the Semiconductor Modeling Team and the Engineering Lab for a GaAs/GaN wafer fab and design facility in Dallas. But since 2015 I’m just another retired guy waiting for leisure time to kick in.

Random Dan
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funkychateau wrote:

Lawyering might be fun, but difficult to handle being the butt of so many bad jokes.


I think sleeping on a bed of $100 bills would make the jokes tolerable
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Another word of caution about attempting to modify li-ion cells: The power output of these cells is high enough to cause second-degree burns in the split second it takes to jerk one’s hand away.

Unfortunately, I know this from personal experience.

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I haven’t had a single button-top cell that was welded, but that might depend on your source I guess.

hcanning
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So the lumen output of the cool white XP-L HI is 2800. Can anyone comment on the likely output of the 7A (3000K) XP-L HI?

cabfrank
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Very likely it will be less. How much less, I don’t know.

WalkIntoTheLight
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hcanning wrote:
So the lumen output of the cool white XP-L HI is 2800. Can anyone comment on the likely output of the 7A (3000K) XP-L HI?

IIRC, the Convoy C8 was listed as somewhere around 20% less for the 7A vs the 1A. I can’t find the specs on that right now, so I’m going from memory.

I bought the 3A and 7A, and visually there’s not much difference.

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BurningPlayd0h wrote:
I haven’t had a single button-top cell that was welded, but that might depend on your source I guess.
I think your right about the source.
I have quite a few from Li Ion Wholesale & all are very securely & nicely spot welded. They do it themselves, ‘in house’; and do it right.

I have several from China vendors & about half of them are spot welded. Most of those spotwelds are pretty crappy to…. especially compared to LiIon Wholesale.

My experience…. yours may vary. 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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JasonWW
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hcanning wrote:
So the lumen output of the cool white XP-L HI is 2800. Can anyone comment on the likely output of the 7A (3000K) XP-L HI?

It will depend on the brightness bin of the leds, their Vf and what battery you use. So very unpredictable. It could be brighter or dimmer.

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But Jason, he’s asking specifically about the emitter choice in the FW3A, they say 1A or 7A so those are known choices as far as power binning goes.

HC, 7A is going to be dimmer and easier on the eyes almost regardless of power bin, there are only so many power bins available and to get a 1A that performed low enough to match a top tier 7A it would require a binning level not commonly available. So the 7A will be less, x 3. If the 1A is making 2800 on the triple then each emitter is making ~933 lumens, so if you were to see 20% less per emitter the total may be as low as ~2390 lumens as compared to the 2800 they list for the 1A. Sounds like a lot, still somewhat difficult to see in real world use. Side by side you could tell, but individually it would be difficult.

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DB Custom wrote:
But Jason, he’s asking specifically about the emitter choice in the FW3A, they say 1A or 7A so those are known choices as far as power binning goes.

Nope, those are tint bins.

7A would be 3050K-3250K in tint. The power/flux bins varies from T4 to U4. That’s 6 different power bins.

1A would be 6500K-7000K in tint. The power/flux bins varies from U5 to V2. That’s 3 different power bins.

This would be perfectly relevant if we were using a regulated driver that controlled the amps, but we are not. We are using a FET driver. In this situation the Vf can have a big effect. Sometimes the warmer tints (with lower Vf) can actually pull higher amps and produce brighter output. Texas_Ace saw this with the XHP70.2 in the MT09R that he built up. The warmer tint he used outperformed the cooler tint due to the extra current draw. This is why I say it’s unpredictable. (Maybe this is not true for emitters other than XHP70.2? IDK)

The statistics say the 7A should be less output, but you won’t know until you try.

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Already have Jason, dozens and dozens of times. I know, Ok? Within the Cree database listings there are only certain options available at a given time to given manufacturers. Remember how much of the time there have been delays because they couldn’t get the power and tint bins we asked for? Only certain combinations of power and tint are available for purchase, this causes issues a lot of the time. The FW3A has two options, at the moment. Because the other choices could not be bought. Does the FW3A now have XHP-70.2 emitters? Relevance, stick to the relevance.

And TA also claims the warm tint throws further but I have pictures that prove otherwise, in a light rain even. He asked friends their opinions based on a very short range, I took pictures at 1.9 miles. So as with all things, yes there are variables. But I have yet to see a triple XP-L with warm tint outperform a triple XP-L with cool tint. And I’ve built a LOT of em. Why do you think I quit accepting warm tints? Any light that comes to me now with a 4 or larger tint number that emitter is in my trash can within minutes of arrival. Literally without even turning it on. If you could see how many emitters I have on hand, how many I’ve removed and trashed, you’d understand.

I just love how the data-sheet people want to argue with the builders. Read all you want, then build em and learn what the data-sheets Didn’t tell you.

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DB Custom
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LOL HC, yeah yeah yeah. But like he says, variables can make it difficult to predict. I predict the warm white option FW3A will be at least 300 lumens less bright. Wink

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I was only after a rough indication anyway Smile

It’d be nice for someone with the 7A and a proper calibrated lumen tube to measure theirs in order to help me calibrate my own shoddy homemade lumen tube, but I fear the 7A will be a less popular choice maybe Smile

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DB Custom wrote:
Already have Jason, dozens and dozens of times. I know, Ok? Within the Cree database listings there are only certain options available at a given time to given manufacturers. Remember how much of the time there have been delays because they couldn’t get the power and tint bins we asked for? Only certain combinations of power and tint are available for purchase, this causes issues a lot of the time. The FW3A has two options, at the moment. Because the other choices could not be bought. Does the FW3A now have XHP-70.2 emitters? Relevance, stick to the relevance.

And TA also claims the warm tint throws further but I have pictures that prove otherwise, in a light rain even. He asked friends their opinions based on a very short range, I took pictures at 1.9 miles. So as with all things, yes there are variables. But I have yet to see a triple XP-L with warm tint outperform a triple XP-L with cool tint. And I’ve built a LOT of em. Why do you think I quit accepting warm tints? Any light that comes to me now with a 4 or larger tint number that emitter is in my trash can within minutes of arrival. Literally without even turning it on. If you could see how many emitters I have on hand, how many I’ve removed and trashed, you’d understand.

I just love how the data-sheet people want to argue with the builders. Read all you want, then build em and learn what the data-sheets Didn’t tell you.


So your not contradicting anything I’ve said, good, I think we are in agreement.

I say the chances of the 7A being brighter are small. You say it is even smaller. Agreement. Big Smile

(Assuming same battery is used) Obviously you can make a 7A brighter than a 1A by using different batteries.

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hcanning wrote:
I was only after a rough indication anyway Smile

It’d be nice for someone with the 7A and a proper calibrated lumen tube to measure theirs in order to help me calibrate my own shoddy homemade lumen tube, but I fear the 7A will be a less popular choice maybe Smile


FET driven lights make terrible calibration lights because there are too many variables involved.

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Jason, he only asked that someone with a properly calibrated light tube take a reading on the 7A FW3A in comparison to the 1A FW3A so he can make a wise purchase decision. Wink

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JasonWW wrote:
hcanning wrote:
I was only after a rough indication anyway Smile

It’d be nice for someone with the 7A and a proper calibrated lumen tube to measure theirs in order to help me calibrate my own shoddy homemade lumen tube, but I fear the 7A will be a less popular choice maybe Smile


FET driven lights make terrible calibration lights because there are too many variables involved.

Fair call. I’ll stick to gazing into the emitters on moonlight mode and going “oooh” then.

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Here ya go HC, 18 Samsung LH351D W6 5000K with domes sliced off, in moon mode…

Future FW3A buyers can look forward to the day the Samsungs are available, or mod their new lights. Wink

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Oooh

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hcanning wrote:
JasonWW wrote:
hcanning wrote:
I was only after a rough indication anyway Smile

It’d be nice for someone with the 7A and a proper calibrated lumen tube to measure theirs in order to help me calibrate my own shoddy homemade lumen tube, but I fear the 7A will be a less popular choice maybe Smile


FET driven lights make terrible calibration lights because there are too many variables involved.

Fair call. I’ll stick to gazing into the emitters on moonlight mode and going “oooh” then.


You could have much more accurate readings if you want.
Maukka sells calibration lights for homemade Lumen Tubes/Integrating Spheres.

Texas Ace Lumen Tube calibrated with Maukka lights

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