My Imalent DX80 caught fire, vented smoke, almost exploded (replacement head arrived)

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Newlumen
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Wow, glad nothing bad happened. Should I be worry about my imalent ms12 and R90c ?? Atleast I should pay very attention!

Rolz
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That could have turned very nasty, glad you are ok.

 

DBSAR
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Macka17 wrote:
Not ALL Imalent are bad.
I have 2 x DN series. (35/70)
and they probably my most used lights when I go outside with one.
Several yrs and not a missed a beat.
although when you on near max output/capacity with torches,
You also nearer to Whoopsy too.
Glad you weren’t burnt or eyes damaged.

—————————
PS.
““Thanks for the pictures, that looks rather frightening. Imagine this happened in a car while driving or similar”“
——————————

I would hope you wouldn’t be playing with a torch. OR anything else while driving.

I agree, I have a couple smaller Imalent lights and they are great. Just the first generation DX80 has some issues, (this one was the first gen)

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

DBSAR
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Newlumen wrote:
Wow, glad nothing bad happened. Should I be worry about my imalent ms12 and R90c ?? Atleast I should pay very attention!

Those newer models are good as far as i have understood, I had the first-generation of the DX80 which had some flaws, but i read Imalent had fixed those flaws in the 2nd generation of the DX80.

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

mattadores
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Maybe Imalent should take note, delay the MS18 release and make sure there is no gen 2 needed

Blinditis
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Lucky you got the top off , albeit KFF Kentucky fried fingers.

Mark

Trail Trek
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Wow very interesting, i hope your finger heals well.
It will be very interesting to see what the cause was.
Get well soon.

Blinkinglights
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Same shyt happened to my light, I was using with full charge, turned it off after 3 mins then mechanically locked it out. Turned it back on after 2 mins and poof, went up it smoke. I might have seen some fire but was so shocked, I was like WTF! and mechanically turned it off.
edited: this happened to my DX80

Me love lights lonng tyme!

rngwn
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Blinkinglights wrote:
Same shyt happened to my light, I was using with full charge, turned it off after 3 mins then mechanically locked it out. Turned it back on after 2 mins and poof, went up it smoke. I might have seen some fire but was so shocked, I was like WTF! and mechanically turned it off.

Was that this model that went off?

Blinkinglights
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DX80

Me love lights lonng tyme!

DBSAR
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Imalent was quick to respond to to this incident, and they said they will ship a new DX80 or the head to me via DHL. ( May,12,2019)

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

teacher
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That’s good news DBSARBeer

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

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djozz
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If they do not require you to send the damaged head back to them, perhaps, if you find the time, you can open up the head and try to figure out where the fire started? Always good to know where lights can fail!

Firelight2
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DBSAR wrote:
Imalent was quick to respond to to this incident, and they said they will ship a new DX80 or the head to me via DHL. ( May,12,2019)
That’s good to hear. It’s better if this kind of thing doesn’t happen.

But when it does, it’s nice to know the company is standing by their product fixing it fast.

mortuus
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djozz wrote:
If they do not require you to send the damaged head back to them, perhaps, if you find the time, you can open up the head and try to figure out where the fire started? Always good to know where lights can fail!

best would be if imalent could pay for shipping to have the light sent back to them, thats the best thing really since they made the light they should investigate what happend..

...where Frugal meets with Flashlight!

djozz
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mortuus wrote:
djozz wrote:
If they do not require you to send the damaged head back to them, perhaps, if you find the time, you can open up the head and try to figure out where the fire started? Always good to know where lights can fail!

best would be if imalent could pay for shipping to have the light sent back to them, thats the best thing really since they made the light they should investigate what happend..


I doubt anyone out in the public would hear back from them what the problem was if the light is sent back. And it is interesting for the flashlight community what happened.
DBSAR
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djozz wrote:
If they do not require you to send the damaged head back to them, perhaps, if you find the time, you can open up the head and try to figure out where the fire started? Always good to know where lights can fail!

They seen the photos of the damage i’m guessing here, and didn’t request the head to be shipped back. All its joints are glued. once i receive the replacement, i may try to get the burnt one apart to see exactly what burned on the driver. there are many parts rattling inside now, so I’m guessing it really disintegrated inside.

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

Agro
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I wonder….would it be possible to design flashlight’s waterproofing in a way that seals when the pressure is from the outside but fails quickly when it’s from the inside?

Johm
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Agro wrote:
I wonder….would it be possible to design flashlight’s waterproofing in a way that seals when the pressure is from the outside but fails quickly when it’s from the inside?

I’m sure it is.

One already existing example is a ‘good’ usb rubber cap (the one on FT03 looks pretty good) where outside pressure helps sit it better and inside pressure just pops it off.

Something else that comes to mind is a thin elastic membrane that sits flat outside a metal plate with holes.

Pressure from the outside will stretch the membrane inside of each small hole, not braking the membrane.
Pressure from the inside will stretch the hole area of the membrane, braking it.

Agro
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What came to my mind is asymmetric o-ring groove, normal on the inside but somewhat open on the outside, so it’s easy to blow out the o-ring. Zero added cost but I’m afraid of dirt accumulation on the greased o-ring.
I haven’t heard of any BLF light exploding, ever. I hope I never will. Nevertheless I think it would be good to add safety vents in case it happens one day. However something that adds cost or reduces practicality just feels like overkill…

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More thoughts:
Initial guess is that the cause of the explosion is a sloppy soldering job.
Can we trust our manufacturers to do better than Imalent in this regard? I’m afraid the answer would be “no”.
Which reinforces my thinking that it would be good to think about safety vents at the time of designing new lights.

Can we program at least some of our drivers to have overcurrent shutdown? It would protect from shorts on the output side but not those before it (right?). Still seems better than nothing. I think that the answer is “no, we can’t do such shotdown without adding cost” for most drivers. But I’m not sure…
Maybe hard shutoff on severe overheat would work? Seems to be something more portable across drivers but acting slower.

Imalent
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Hi,this is Ethan from Imalent, Hope you are OK.

Jacky from Imalent. www.imalent.com sales01@imalent.com

DBSAR
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Imalent wrote:
Hi,this is Ethan from Imalent, Hope you are OK.

I am ok, the small burn on my finger is healing. One of the representatives from Imalent replied to my email about the incident, and told me they would sent a replacement. I appreciate the concern and fast response to DX80 incident.
- Den

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

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UPDATES,May,16,2019

The replacement head arrived today for the DX80. I thank Imalent for the fast & great customer service, and quick solution & replacement of the failed light.

(I managed to get the burned head apart.. it looks like the driver nearly exploded, (several of the components were blown off the driver board completely, and some of the large copper traces were melted off. My only guess here either one of the square large inductor coils shorted, or a trace close-shorted to cause some high-amp DC arching, (like a welder affect) maybe someone more experienced with circuitry could identify what happened here. (it happened when the light was cold and when turned off, and occurred as soon as i tried to turn it on.)

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

Kame Sennin
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The big squares look like inductors.

It it would be interesting to have a picture of a "non burned" driver for comparison

teacher
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Nice disaster pics…. Thumbs Up . Wink

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

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Wow. That is a fairly impressive cascade failure. You’re right, there was definitely some high-current arcing in there. If you hadn’t quickly unscrewed the light, it could really have snowballed.

Those grey squares are usually inductors. Looking at the upper centre of the first photo, it looks like there was an inductor there at the epicentre of the failure. My first thought was an internal short in the inductor coil, but the loose inductor you show in the third photo looks too intact for that (I’d expect it to have blown apart and look like a worse version of the broken inductor with the wires hanging out at the centre-right of the first photo).

Pure speculation, but I’m wondering if there was a bad solder joint to the inductor in the third photo – one contact looks better than the other. A bad solder joint would heat up under load and could well melt the solder into creating a short. Flash vaporisation would then blow the inductor off the board, causing other components to fail because the circuit was no longer operating as designed.

Another possibility would be a PCB track under the inductor that was damaged or too thin, so it had too high a resistance and heated up under load. If that gets to the point of a thermal runaway, it can vaporise the track and possibly kick off more shorts and failures next to it.

I have to say, I’m surprised Imalent didn’t ask you to send the head back. If I were an Imalent engineer, I’d definitely want it on my bench for a post-mortem comparison with both an undamaged driver and an unpopulated PCB.

I’m also surprised it wasn’t the electrolytic capacitor (still intact at the lower right of the first photo). In my experience, things going pop like that are most often down to a failed capacitor.

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Just came across this thread….scary stuff

Glad that nothing worse happened and good also to see Imalent do the right thing

G'day mate, ow ya garn?
Yeah, nah good mate

CREEXHP70LED
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Where did the replacement light ship from? You got it very fast.

 

 

 

DBSAR
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CREEXHP70LED wrote:
Where did the replacement light ship from? You got it very fast.

They shipped it via DHL priority. (was less than a week arrived.

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

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