The making of the BLF UC4 charger: the start of a new venture, INTEREST LIST, and UPDATE 2.1(UI update and HKJ)

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BlueSwordM
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The charger will not be based on the UT4.

The protected 21700s make it impossible to use the IT4 as a base.

My very own high current Beryllium Copper springs Gen 3:
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/67401
Liitokala Aliexpress Stores Battery Fraud: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/60547

rost333
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BlueSwordM wrote:
The charger will not be based on the UT4…

So… is there still time and opportunity to reconsider usage of touch screen (like the one on smartphone)? Is the final design already set?

BlueSwordM
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Final design has not been set at all.

Everybody, it’s only been 2 weeks. You can’t expect a brand new charger to be made that quickly.

BLF projects tend to take a long time. While this one won’t take as long as flashlights projects, things still can be slow, especially with communication.

My very own high current Beryllium Copper springs Gen 3:
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/67401
Liitokala Aliexpress Stores Battery Fraud: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/60547

Nichia
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Depending on the price and how good it is then am in for 1 or 2

Am Breathing Nichia 219B

amishbill
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BlueSwordM wrote:
Final design has not been set at all.

Everybody, it’s only been 2 weeks. You can’t expect a brand new charger to be made that quickly.

BLF projects tend to take a long time. While this one won’t take as long as flashlights projects, things still can be slow, especially with communication.


rofl… It took years for the LT1 to get to where it is, and we’re still waiting for final options like color and a page to order it from.

I’d go into this with the mindset that it may be ready for Christmas ordering.
Next Christmas.

If BlueSword & Friends can pull it off sooner, we can break out the beer & balloons. If it runs past next Christmas, well, it’s our own fault for not paying him a full time salary to work on this all day, every day even if it triples the price. Hat

Oh, yeah… And I’d like it to have pinstripes and a two tone paintjob. Beer

Joshk
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I have no complaints, BlueSwordM seems to be staying on top of this project quite well Beer

gottawearshades
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Please put me down for one.

Much obliged.

Pete7874
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amishbill wrote:
I’d go into this with the mindset that it may be ready for Christmas ordering.
Next Christmas.
Realistically, you’re probably right on.
t-soung
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I also want two USB outputs for loading i-phone etc.
This reduces further power supply units.

I like the display of the XTAR VC4S. It shows all information for all channels at the same time.

leftdisconnected
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Perhaps every Special Edition thread needs an immovable banner which covers every page, making them impossible to read, and which says:

 

If you need <group buy product> right this moment, then run away as fast as you can and forget that you ever saw this.  These aren't the <group buy products> you're looking for.

 

If you need <group buy product> within 6 months, please purchase an existing product, post a review on BLF, and come back with feedback on how this project can be slightly better 3 years from now at only 2 times the price.

 

If you won't need <group buy product> for 2-4 years and don't expect <miracle feature> to be included for <bargain price>, then welcome!  Please post to get on our interest list.

 

smile

RobAllen

locusto03
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Please add me to the list for one. Smile

Stittville Ed
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leftdisconnected wrote:

Perhaps every Special Edition thread needs an immovable banner which covers every page, making them impossible to read, and which says:


 


If you need <group buy product> right this moment, then run away as fast as you can and forget that you ever saw this.  These aren’t the <group buy products> you’re looking for.


 


If you need <group buy product> within 6 months, please purchase an existing product, post a review on BLF, and come back with feedback on how this project can be slightly better 3 years from now at only 2 times the price.


 


If you won’t need <group buy product> for 2-4 years and don’t expect <miracle feature> to be included for <bargain price>, then welcome!  Please post to get on our interest list.


 


smile

PERFECT !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

sandanbob
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I am interested. Thanks!

gorb507
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interested. Thanks!

Gorb507

f0xx
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Throw my name on the list. Seems an interesting project, and I’d like another charger.

While we’re making requests, I’d appreciate if it could send and email/text/notification when finished charging, a camera (what device doesn’t have a camera in 2019?), xray sensor for seeing inside the cells as they charge, and roomba capabilities… oh, and have it ready by Thanksgiving Wink

Pete7874
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f0xx wrote:
While we’re making requests, I’d appreciate if it could send and email/text/notification when finished charging.
Not a bad idea. On a rudimentary level, maybe at least have it emit some loud beeps when charging is done. Of course, it would need to be defeatable so that it doesn’t wake you in the middle of the night, unless you want it to.
M78
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Interested in one. Thanks

Sciencetists
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I’m interest in one!

f0xx
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Pete7874 wrote:
Not a bad idea. On a rudimentary level, maybe at least have it emit some loud beeps when charging is done. Of course, it would need to be defeatable so that it doesn’t wake you in the middle of the night, unless you want it to.

I was trying to go from moderately reasonable to ridiculous.. but I agree at least an audible beep would be cool (provided we can turn it on/off as desired). You can get bluetooth or Wi-Fi radios pretty cheaply, so depending on what they decide to run this thing on (would love a linux based charger, but that is probably too big for this project) it would be trivial to get it sending emails
nibble
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f0xx wrote:
I was trying to go from moderately reasonable to ridiculous.. but I agree at least an audible beep would be cool (provided we can turn it on/off as desired). You can get bluetooth or Wi-Fi radios pretty cheaply, so depending on what they decide to run this thing on (would love a linux based charger, but that is probably too big for this project) it would be trivial to get it sending emails

No, it won’t be trivial. The easiest way would probably be using a third-party relay email service like Mailgun, but even then a frontend should be offered to the user to configure it, and the network connection of course. All this only adds more complexity, unstability and development cost. I think the priority should be just to make a great charger.

amishbill
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nibble wrote:
f0xx wrote:
I was trying to go from moderately reasonable to ridiculous.. but I agree at least an audible beep would be cool (provided we can turn it on/off as desired). You can get bluetooth or Wi-Fi radios pretty cheaply, so depending on what they decide to run this thing on (would love a linux based charger, but that is probably too big for this project) it would be trivial to get it sending emails

No, it won’t be trivial. The easiest way would probably be using a third-party relay email service like Mailgun, but even then a frontend should be offered to the user to configure it, and the network connection of course. All this only adds more complexity, unstability and development cost. I think the priority should be just to make a great charger.


Since this would now be a network connected Internet of Things device, you also have to factor in security, security updates, and a whole realm of things that would require perpetual upkeep and maintenance.

MAYBE – bluetooth beaconing technology. Put an app on your phone and get one way notices from the charger. Anything more opens up too many problems.

leftdisconnected
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amishbill wrote:
Since this would now be a network connected Internet of Things device, you also have to factor in security, security updates, and a whole realm of things that would require perpetual upkeep and maintenance.

+1. I’m decidedly against manufacturing more DDoS devices into consumer hands. Every single one of them should be UL-listed (for WiFi/Internet security, a standard which doesn’t exist except in my imagination Wink ) and then run through a blast furnace, just in case. Charcoal briquettes never get malware.

amishbill wrote:
MAYBE – bluetooth beaconing technology. Put an app on your phone and get one way notices from the charger. Anything more opens up too many problems.

Because nothing bad ever happens from putting an app on your phone Smile . I actually agree with you and am just kidding here (it’s late/early), but perhaps you’re not Amish enough Big Smile .

RobAllen

f0xx
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nibble wrote:
No, it won’t be trivial.

Perhaps I should clarify, depending on what it runs (software and hardware) it would be trivial for me to add this to my own unit AFTER production. I have a raspberry pi zero (runs about $5) that I set up as a drop camera. It powers up on a schedule, takes a picture, emails the picture, and shuts off to preserve battery. This project was something I did for fun, and it took longer to source the parts/accessories than it did to write the scripts to make this happen. I didn’t have to set up a mail relay, I just send the emails directly from the pi. There are plenty of safe ways to make this work.

nibble wrote:
I think the priority should be just to make a great charger.

Agreed. Most of my suggestions were facetious in the first post on addition features. I think a charger that just works is a wonderful project. The idea of having a notification (audible, visible, or otherwise) seems to resonate with at least a few of us.. but it doesn’t need a complicated implementation. A beep would suffice for most.

EDIT (to add)
amishbill & leftdisconnected
I don’t think we need an IOT type of device here, and I agree with much of what you two said. It would be great if the device had some sort of output like a serial (or USB) port that would give live data. This could be hooked up to a computer running something a bit more trustworthy/verifiable like an SBC with Linux.

If it has an LED indicator that lights up when the cells are charged, this could be wired as a signal to another device to do the notifications.

ChibiM
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Please add me to the list as well BlueSwordM for 1 unit

rost333
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Up to date interest list

Total quantity (at the moment): 297

Tdh66
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Put me down for one. Thanks

leftdisconnected
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f0xx wrote:
nibble wrote:
I think the priority should be just to make a great charger.

Agreed. Most of my suggestions were facetious in the first post on addition features. I think a charger that just works is a wonderful project. The idea of having a notification (audible, visible, or otherwise) seems to resonate with at least a few of us.. but it doesn’t need a complicated implementation. A beep would suffice for most.

For what it’s worth, I suspect that many readers understood that you had tongue firmly in cheek, but it’s always difficult to convey undertones to everyone, especially those who may not use English as their primary language. Emoticons help, but there are still tons of things lost in translation, even if no translation occurs.

I’m being facetious about half the time and thus am misunderstood nearly half the time Wink .

RobAllen

f0xx
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leftdisconnected wrote:

At least I’m in good company Big Smile

I had a college chemistry professor that encouraged us to use a Smile when emailing him so he knew we were not upset (even if we were) so he could sleep better.

I try to keep it light as this is my hobby and I do it for fun. I’ve “met” lots of great people here, and am frequently impressed by the helpful and friendly responses I see.

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Quote:
For what it’s worth, I suspect that many readers understood that you had tongue firmly in cheek, but it’s always difficult to convey undertones to everyone, especially those who may not use English as their primary language. Emoticons help, but there are still tons of things lost in translation, even if no translation occurs.

I have heard people say that sarcasm is not really a “thing” in many Asian cultures.
sueli428
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I am interested!

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