Finally got a DMM - HD2010 tailcap reading less than 2A?

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JaffoAZ
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Finally got a DMM - HD2010 tailcap reading less than 2A?

Got my first DMM today ($10 Excel XL380L), and started checking voltage on all of my cells – mostly TrustFire Flames – and all tested right close to 4.2v.

Then I started learning how to get tailcap measurements. With the TF 18650, I get 1.5A on high in my SF L2 torches with the MF UF 3-mode XM-L drop-in. I think that’s about right, isn’t it?

After that, I tried to get a reading from my new HD2010. I read in reviews that it’s supposed to pull at least 2.5A on a fresh decent 18650, 3A on a higher-end 18650, and quite a bit higher on a 26650.

Mine gives me quite a bit less than 2A on high.

I thinking it is more likely that the stock leads on this cheap DMM are more likely the issue than my Trustfire Flames.

Thoughts?

JAFFO

Edited by: Anonymous (not verified) on 08/23/2012 - 16:13
Langcjl
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Both readings are low. Most likely cause by thin leads. Make some new least from thicker copper wire.

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JaffoAZ
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Thank you. I thought so. I will do so. Smile

JAFFO

JohnnyMac
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Yeah, bud, the MF 3 mode should give at least 3a so your 2010 is even more. Sounds like new leads are definitely in order. Wink

JaffoAZ
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Now I’m confusing myself. I found some slightly bigger leads from another better DMM I no longer have, and now I get higher readings, but still not as high as they should be. But like I said, my batteries are all showing 4+V. So if I can get a 3.5A reading from the HD2010 with a SolarForce 18650 charged to 4.2V, why can I still only get 2.5A on my MF 3-modes? Why wouldn’t I get ? Will the resistance in cheaper leads also cause variation like that?

I think I read that getting an accurate voltage measurement on cells is a lot more reliable than amps from a tailcap measurement when you have a cheaper DMM/leads. Is that correct?

Oh, and I have to make a quick edit. After changing the leads, I now get 3+ amps on the MF3-mode, but ONLY if I use the fully charged SF V3 18650. My TTFs just aren’t dishing out the goods. But still – my HD2010 should be getting much higher amps from that SF cell, I would think.

I’ll look for thicker leads, but I’m kinda worried I got an under-performing HD2010.

JAFFO

JaffoAZ
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Crap. Now I gotta also add- i just checked one of the TFFs, and it was only at 4v. I’m definitely learning some things about measuring current at the tail. Need to make sure the cell is fully charged, eh?

Hopefully these leads are too thin as well, and just can’t register over 3.5A… Just read another HD2010 review (Foy’s) and he was pulling 4+ amps with the same SF cell I have on a 4.23v charge.

I’ll top these cells off and try again to see if I can get my 4+ out of this beast.

Then, when i get the 26650s it’s game-on.

Thanks again guys. At least this learning process is fun as hell…

JAFFO

JohnnyMac
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If it’s any consolation, I only got 3.5 out of mine.

Suncoaster
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Good to hear, Jaffo
I’ve got a HD2010 and 26650s on the way, so have just made up some new leads as well..

Anxious to see the high amp reading, not that it’ll affect the torch output.
At least I’ll know whether a TFF or KingKong is better.
I’m betting on the KingKongs

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cainn
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I went through all this nonsense myself. The solution was custom leads:

Those are battery bars on the end of the wires (used in the construction of high current battery packs). If you know that those SF batteries are capable of putting out up to 5A or so, then you should be reading somewhere around 4.7A with the MF 3-mode drop-in. I don’t have a HD2010 so I can’t comment on that.

JaffoAZ
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cainn24 wrote:
I went through all this nonsense myself. The solution was custom leads:

Those are battery bars on the end of the wires (used in the construction of high current battery packs). If you know that those SF batteries are capable of putting out up to 5A or so, then you should be reading somewhere around 4.7A with the MF 3-mode drop-in. I don’t have a HD2010 so I can’t comment on that.

Good points. Thank you.

I don’t think I’ve read about anyone getting 5A from a SF 18650 on one of these – only with a good 26650. But, as Johnny Mac mentioned above – he got 3.5A with the TTF 18650s, as mentioned in his review. But Foy got 4+ with the same SF cells I have.

I think what we are experiencing is not just the DMM leads, which I expect to be part of the problem for me. Johnny and Foy test a LOT of lights, and we can’t blame any lower current results on cheap leads for them, I don’t think.

I think it’s li-ion cell variance, or worse, inconsistent East 092 driver draw.

Then again, the HD2010 is supposed to be direct drive on high. How would it’s draw be limited to anything under 5A in that case, unless the cells were to blame?

Am I thinking correctly here?

JAFFO

JaffoAZ
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And thanks, Suncoaster! LOVE this torch, and it surely performs in the real world. But imagining an even brighter HD2010 with a good 26650 cell hitting 5A is a pretty fun as well. Smile Congrats on yours as well.

I ordered a pair of TFF 26650s, just because there seems to be no visually noticeable difference OTF. But the Kongs appear to be some awesome cells that I will have to order at some point…

JAFFO

cainn
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JaffoAZ wrote:
I think it’s li-ion cell variance, or worse, inconsistent East 092 driver draw.

Then again, the HD2010 is supposed to be direct drive on high. How would it’s draw be limited to anything under 5A in that case, unless the cells were to blame?

Am I thinking correctly here?

I use Panasonic NCR18650A cells. With the UF-980L (which is direct drive on high) I get up to 5.8A out of them. Before I made the custom leads for my DMM, I couldn’t get a reading much above 3A.

EDIT: Just wanted to mention that this reading is with a battery hot off the charger.

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And what DMM do you have, cainn?
A good and cheap way to check DMMs is using Nanjg driver (with good cells). If you get 2.78-2.79A – your DMM is good at lease up to 3A :bigsmile:

cainn
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I have a cheap “Digitor” DMM. In addition to checking it’s measurements against known values below 3A, I’ve also hooked it up in line while doing discharge tests with my hobby charger. At 3, 4 and 5A it matched what my hobby charger was reporting to within 10-20 mA.

scaru
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What you need to keep in mind is when your making your leads low resistance is the fact that your tailcap may not be. The only way to get accurate results would be to measure it through the tailcap. 

cainn
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That’s a good point, and I’ve been meaning to rig up a decent method of accurately taking that into account.

JaffoAZ
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cainn24 wrote:
JaffoAZ wrote:
I think it’s li-ion cell variance, or worse, inconsistent East 092 driver draw.

Then again, the HD2010 is supposed to be direct drive on high. How would it’s draw be limited to anything under 5A in that case, unless the cells were to blame?

Am I thinking correctly here?

I use Panasonic NCR18650A cells. With the UF-980L (which is direct drive on high) I get up to 5.8A out of them. Before I made the custom leads for my DMM, I couldn’t get a reading much above 3A.

EDIT: Just wanted to mention that this reading is with a battery hot off the charger.

Just for my own clarification, “hot off the charger” means the cells have hit 4.2v, give or take, correct?

JAFFO

Chicago X
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Are the TF flames from a trusted supplier and genuine?

+1 on the new leads as well.

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scaru
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Yep. 

cainn
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JaffoAZ wrote:
Just for my own clarification, “hot off the charger” means the cells have hit 4.2v, give or take, correct?

Give or take, yes. They’re always a tiny bit below that.

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There seems to be a huge difference in what people are measuring on their HD2010's.  Mine still pulls over 5 amps on both of my DMM's with a King Kong XSL.  If I touch the lead against the battery as light as possible, I can get it down to around 4.70 and my leads aren't all that thick. (the ones it came with)

Is there more than one driver being used?

 

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JaffoAZ
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Foy wrote:

There seems to be a huge difference in what people are measuring on their HD2010’s.  Mine still pulls over 5 amps on both of my DMM’s with a King Kong XSL.  If I touch the lead against the battery as light as possible, I can get it down to around 4.70 and my leads aren’t all that thick. (the ones it came with)

Is there more than one driver being used?

 

Foy

Foy, from all the reading I’ve done today, it seems I’ve confirmed (as well as I can from BLF forum posts) we all have the East 092 driver on the stock light. Lightmalls, Tmart, and Manafont are selling the same HD, or at least HDs with the same driver, regardless of the brand name on the body.

I charged my SolarForce V3 2600mAh cell to 4.27v and dropped it in the HD2010, and I’m getting 3.2A. I don’t have my TFF 26650s yet. I know your Kongs out perform those. But this SF V3 cell (I didn’t know before today because I didn’t have a DMM until today) is out performing my TFFs in terms of output.

I’m guessing either cell or driver variance at this point.

JAFFO

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JaffoAZ wrote:
Foy wrote:

There seems to be a huge difference in what people are measuring on their HD2010's.  Mine still pulls over 5 amps on both of my DMM's with a King Kong XSL.  If I touch the lead against the battery as light as possible, I can get it down to around 4.70 and my leads aren't all that thick. (the ones it came with)

Is there more than one driver being used?

 

Foy

Foy, from all the reading I've done today, it seems I've confirmed (as well as I can from BLF forum posts) we all have the East 092 driver on the stock light. Lightmalls, Tmart, and Manafont are selling the same HD, or at least HDs with the same driver, regardless of the brand name on the body. I charged my SolarForce V3 2600mAh cell to 4.27v and dropped it in the HD2010, and I'm getting 3.2A. I don't have my TFF 26650s yet. I know your Kongs out perform those. But this SF V3 cell (I didn't know before today because I didn't have a DMM until today) is out performing my TFFs in terms of output. I'm guessing either cell or driver variance at this point.

From memory I only got a maximum of around 3 amps from mine no matter what battery I used or DMM. I dont think with the driver in mine that if I hooked it up to the overhead wires used on the electric trains I would get a reading any higher.

Edit. Maximum I got was 2.7 amps. Just found it on Foys review.

 

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Looks like there are two drivers:
East-092 on JohnnyMac’s Ultrafire
and East-092B on Night Breaker’s FandyFire

Also Kramer5150’s findings show different readings depending on how compressed the spring is.

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JaffoAZ
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Suncoaster wrote:
Looks like there are two drivers:
East-092 on JohnnyMac’s Ultrafire
and East-092B on Night Breaker’s FandyFire

Also Kramer5150’s findings show different readings depending on how compressed the spring is.

Interesting. So how does direct drive factor into this? I was assuming the East 092 was direct drive on high… why wouldn’t it pull unrestricted? Or, maybe I don’t fully understand DD?

JAFFO

JaffoAZ
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Damn. Now I feel like ordering a second HD2010. (sad smiley not necessarily appropriate)

JAFFO

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Okay, just for fun, I did a quick test with a few different 18650's:

 

Solarforce protected 2400 mAh (blue and white): 4.0 amps

Tenergy unprotected 2600 mAh:                         4.0

Xtar 18700 protected 2600 mAh:                        3.75

Panasonic CGR (D) unprotected 2350 mAh:         3.67

Solarforce unprotected 2400 mAh (white):          3.57

TrustFire flame protected 2400 mAh:                  3.0  (well used cell, many cycles)

 

These cells were all charged a couple of days ago but I didn't measure any voltages.  They usually come off my WF-188 at about 4.21 volts.

 

Foy

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Would you get more accurate results using using a short loop of wire and a clamp meter, rather than fluffing around trying to reduce lead resistance?

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Yes, a clamp would be much more accurate.  That's why all these tail cap readings should be used in relative terms, not absolute.  Having said that, I'm quite comfortable with my measurements after getting nearly identical readings as E1320 on the same light.  (his Fluke)

Foy can't afford cool stuff.

 

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JaffoAZ
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Alright. Well there you have it. Minus the Fluke, I agree that those results are pretty telling.

So is it a driver thing? I tried hard to get the same UF HD2010 you guys have because the reviews rock so hard. It is already awesome and I’m fully satisfied with the performance, but it is a tad lame that I can’t get the same current and output that others can, I suppose…

Or, maybe I’m just new still and my priorities are a little out of whack. Smile

JAFFO

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Which one did you get ? Tmart ?

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