Photon Fanatic Build, Ti Neck Light (Pic Heavy) *8-5-14 Upgrade*

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DB Custom
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Trying out a Plastic Spring from Lee Spring Co, cut down to a single coil it’s purpose is to keep the battery separated from the driver when in the off position and to be slippery enough to keep the twisty smooth and silky. With these fantastic threads smooth and silky is guaranteed! Smile

The Plastic Spring:
TP Lee PSpring l19

Installed in the Texas Poker:
TP Lee PSpring l6

For perspective (and just because I love looking at these threads):
TP Lee PSpring l8

A closer look, keep in mind that the driver under this spring is 10mm in diameter:
TP Lee PSpring l16

And just because:
TP Lee PSpring l26

Smile

sorotantaz
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really state of the art craftmanship. excellent work of photon fanatic. none of their lights are boring to look at.. thanks for sharing the making process Dale Smile
DB Custom
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A few pics of the pair, the Texas Poker with it’s sidekick the Battery Bunker. (Don’t ask me, Fred names em)

The pair with my fav blades from Benchmade, the AFCK with 3.9” ATS-34 blade and the Nimravus cub with 4.5” M2 blade.
DBC_May 12, 2013_160636

How do you turn this perfect a radius on a manual lathe?
DBC_May 12, 2013_160933

Happy trio
DBC_May 12, 2013_161322

Matching tailcaps, except the Battery Bunker is left with a sharp glass breaker point!
DBC_May 12, 2013_161352

Showing the cap off the Battery Bunker and it’s payload: the Efest IMR10440
DBC_May 12, 2013_161532

The Texas Poker and it’s backups, the MBI HF in Ti and CU. The Ti HF has an XM-L T5 while the CU HF has an Nichia 219. They are in configuration to run the Nuke 10250 cell.
DBC_May 12, 2013_162121

Daily carry, the Texas Poker on it’s Ti curb chain and the HF’s along with a Ti Pen, and Ti pill fob of my own make on my keychain….among other things.
DBC_May 12, 2013_161825

Speedsix
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Everytime I think I know a little about working with tools or electronics, someone on this forum shows me how puny my skills are.

I hate all of you for making me feel bad about myself. LOL! Just joking but the level of skill and knowledge on this forum is formidable. If all you talented guys could pool your skills in to a single vein, you could start a company that would instantly rival any flashlight manufacturer out there.

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Brilliant observation Speedsix, I wonder what it would take to implement a collective action into mass production? My limited knowledge of lathes and CNC machines tells me that once the product is figured out and programmed into the computer, it should be relatively “easy” to produce multiple product of similar quality to the original hand made device. Now wouldn’t THAT be interesting! Custom one-off lights for the masses! In a way, that’s exactly what Guy from MBI did with the HF lights in the photo above. Prototyped it till it met his exacting standard, then produced them in batches of 100 or maybe 200 in metals such as Al (beadblasted or anodized black) Cu in RAW finish only, Ti also in bead blasted or RAW and I think there’s a SS version on the way. Also with or without Trit inserts. Even allowed the first production run to have specific serial numbers. I have the very first HF shipped to the States in Cu with XM-L U2 emitter and a custom serial number. Smile (Yes, I have 3 HF’s) These tiny lights produce some 600 lumens from a special run of 10250 cell designed by Guy and called the Nuke, a high discharge 80mAh cell that gives that 600 lumens number by driving the XM-L at some 3.02A for a short duration (heat is a real issue in this small of light, even in solid copper variant) {that 3.02A was just measured on my DMM from a fully charged but rested cell}

Chicago X
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What a beautiful collection !

Any chance of putting something next to the Poker for scale, please?

A dollar bill (or $100 Wink ) would do nicely.

Thanks !

http://wardogsmakingithome.org/index.html

War Dogs, Making it Home - Rescue Dogs for Returning Vets

DB Custom
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I’ve got some shot’s of it next to an 18650 cell, standing beside an L2P light, and with the AAA sized 10440. Also with a quarter perched beside it. They should all be here somewhere…

How about on top of an L2P and beside an LD01?
DBC_April 30, 2013_102226

Alongside an 18650 and in front of an L2P
DBC_April 29, 2013_170636

With a quarter
DBC_April 29, 2013_171431

And in hand
DBC_April 29, 2013_171619

DB Custom
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It measures 79mm tip to tail, 20mm at the head with a 13mm battery tube.

gords1001
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that is gorgeous, congratulations on such a wonderful little light.

Chicago X
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Thanks much - I have a much better sense of scale now. 

http://wardogsmakingithome.org/index.html

War Dogs, Making it Home - Rescue Dogs for Returning Vets

DB Custom
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I made the finishing touches on the Texas Poker. Anodized the head, then polished the exterior back up to achieve a complimentary blue to the orange of the copper. All done, and really really loving it!

DBC_May 14, 2013_101628

DBC_May 14, 2013_101722

DBC_May 14, 2013_101751

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Can someone buy me a mill? I hate looking at this light. Love

 

djozz quotes, "it came with chinese lettering that is chinese to me".

                      "My man mousehole needs one too"

old4570 said "I'm not an expert , so don't suffer from any such technical restrictions".

Old-Lumens. Highly admired and cherished member of Budget Light Forum. 11.5.2011 - 20.12.16. RIP.

 

DB Custom
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No mill was used during the making of this project, an old manual Swiss lathe (Wahli Multi 78 or 76)

Gotta step it up my friend! lol The guy that made this started using a lathe about 5 years ago. (IMMSMC)

MRsDNF
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DBCstm wrote:
No mill was used during the making of this project, an old manual Swiss lathe (Wahli Multi 78 or 76) Gotta step it up my friend! lol The guy that made this started using a lathe about 5 years ago. (IMMSMC)

Your right. I’m handing my license to drive a lathe in. I’m not worthy anymore. Must have something to do with getting old. Its a shame as I was going to do your HD2010 pill when I was able bodied again. Oh well, thems the breaks. :_(

 

djozz quotes, "it came with chinese lettering that is chinese to me".

                      "My man mousehole needs one too"

old4570 said "I'm not an expert , so don't suffer from any such technical restrictions".

Old-Lumens. Highly admired and cherished member of Budget Light Forum. 11.5.2011 - 20.12.16. RIP.

 

DB Custom
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Yep, some days you get the bear, some days the bear gets you!

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I haven’t had the Texas Poker quite a year, and finally the break I’ve been looking for. With Comfychair and Rufusbduck, MattAus and RMM, JonnyC and a few others working on FET drivers, 10mm boards, and custom flashing UI Firmware, I’m now able to set the Texas Poker up like I’d originally seen it…and then some!

I built a driver with the BLF ATiny10 pcb and a small MOSFET that Scott sent me to try out. I flashed the ATiny13A MCU with JonnyC’s firmware, a version that Richard wrote for me and I tweaked slightly. And swapped out the Nichia 219 5000K emitter with an XP-G2 R5 1A de-domed. So now the Texas Poker is pulling 3.11A from it’s Efest IMR10440 cell! That’s good for 552 lumens at start, 452 at 30 seconds! Smile

With 4 levels breaking down like this…Lo – 7 lumens (.02A), Med – 48 lumens (.27A), Hi – 242 lumens (1.49A) and Turbo – 452 lumens (3.11A) it’s got levels for most any occasion.

Here’s Turbo to see the red oil drum at 97 yds, standard shots from the G1X at 1600 ISO, f/5.6 (5.8 tele) and 1/2 second exposure. 1st is at 28mm wide angle, second is 112mm zoomed in.

Not bad at all for a 3” neck light. Smile

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With the FET driver going in on April 4th, today Aug 5th I swapped out the de-domed XP-G2 emitter for an XP-L V5 2A, also de-domed. Same driver, same Efest IMR10440 cells. Amperage draw is up to 3.20A from 3.11A, lumens jumped over 300 to 873 OTF now! Fantastic!

Lo = 10
Med = 86
Hi = 362
Turbo = 873!! Woohoo!

At 3.2A it’s right at the specs for max from Cree, so it should be pretty efficient, not doubling the max recommendation like the XP-G2 was. I should in theory get these additional lumens without much, if any, increase in heat and it’ll drain the cell at about the same rate as before. Win win all around. Better tint now as well. Wink

The only way it can get any better is with the new BLFTiny10 boards from OSHPark, the new revisions allow it to run more stably and I should be able to go with moon modes and go with 5 levels instead of 4. I’ll get some new boards and build a new driver, lay it out a little differently with a lean towards the lower end. Won’t gain any output, but should gain one or possibly two modes for better usability with a lower low.

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Crazy how this little light performs! The red oil drum in the picture is 97 yds away. This light is still using an Orange Peel reflector! That should change soon, and I’ll update this again. New reflectors are on the way…

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Nice (re)build Smile Sure is a looker even when off!

BTW: Did I miss something about the driver blfTiny10 ? Was that not a fet based driver? How did you improve moon mode? I am sure it is just me that missed it but ins sounds way cool.

~ Ledsmoke ~

Dutch humor:

[quote=djozz]

 I do not think that the BLF-community ben

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DBC,
I see how you mentioned that you always carry your Ti/Cu 18500 light with you and can’t help but notice that it’s quite similar to the Poker.
Some time ago you mentioned that you always had Poker on you. Do you still do?

Texas Poker…I gave this light many thoughts recently.

It’s beautiful.
It’s a neck light – and that’s my most used kind of light.
It’s a hot rod though you had to mod it for that – and I love hot rods.

Nearly a year ago you showed us how the Texas Poker has aged with use. It still looked great.
I remember how you mentioned that after the $800 bill you wouldn’t buy a light like that again. But….I don’t find $800 that expensive.
Considering how many lights you have and how this is one of your most used lights I figured that you surely have many more expensive ones in terms of $/use or $/minute-of-use. Well, at least I have more expensive lights, covering all the range from $1 ones to some of the costliest that I bought.

So…no doubt this light was expensive, but its longevity coupled with frequent use made it more affordable that I thought initially.
I’d love you read your reflections on how did the Texas Poker stand to the test of time. Are you glad about how it ages? What design decisions made it age better? What made it age worse?

Maybe one day I’ll order a custom as well. Regardless if I do – it will enable me to make better shopping decisions.

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I wear the Texas Poker on a Titanium curb chain with Ti fasteners, everything Ti. I sleep with it, only take it off to bathe and it goes right back on when I dry off. So it’s with me, on me, virtually every minute of every day. There is no discernible wear from the Ti split ring in the mounting hole at the end of the light in spite of how it swings around all the time. I’ve slept with it for over 5 years so it’s automatic to keep it on my chest when I turn at night, doesn’t wake me up at all.

The copper can get green from sweat, but of course that’s to be expected. I clean the green off if it gets like that but usually leave the copper dark. Once in great while I polish it and it looks like new again, only to fairly quickly darken of course.

I sometimes wish it were a switched light instead of a twisty but then it would have to be larger. As a 10440 light it’s quite small but the head allows for a nice reflector that works really well, with a beam profile much like a larger light. Fred told me he sourced the reflector from Dereelight but I’ve never found it’s match, have tried though. I try to remember to re-lube it with Nyogel on a regular basis but sometimes I forget and the dry o-ring reminds me when I charge the Efest cell. So far though, all is well.

This light was as expensive as it was primarily because I wanted to use a 1” bar of Surgical Grade Ti that I’d had for years and had sort of special meaning to me. It took a lot of extra time cutting this small light out of the big solid bar. So a custom could/should be able to be made for less monies.

My scratch made 18500 is not really similar to the Poker other than that it’s Ti/Cu… the Ti is 6Al4V in my light where the Photon Fanatic light is a higher grade, technically 6Al4V Eli. In my light the copper is Tellurium Copper for an easier machining. And of course my light is a quad, recently re-fitted with Samsung LH351D 80 CRI 5000K emitters while the Poker has a 5000K Nichia 219C after a lot of trial with other emitters. The Poker came to me making 135 lumens, it is now in the low 700’s after a brief stint in the 1100’s with an XP-L. I actually use my 18500 Quad a lot more than the Poker, I uh, tend to forget the Poker is around my neck. Big Smile

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I’ve read you talking about the Texas Poker here and there, but had never searched for it! Only today I was drawn to this thread and…WOW Shocked This light is a masterpiece Blushing

And the other “accessories” (pen, battery carrier, other flashlights, et al …) … Love

Great work man, great work!!! Crown

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My EDC, as it were… The Texas Poker with my 18500 Quad and Ti handled Koenig Custom, the case is the Holstex carbon fiber print carrying case I made for my 18500 quad…

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DB Custom wrote:
My EDC, as it were… The Texas Poker with my 18500 Quad and Ti handled Koenig Custom, the case is the Holstex carbon fiber print carrying case I made for my 18500 quad…

Those lights are uniquely gorgeous!! Shocked
I guess I should go back in time to seek for those iconic lights’ building threads!!
Impressive work and skills and a very nice setting you got there Wink

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That Texas Poker is still the most beautiful 10440 size light I’ve ever seen. Love

The Cycle of Goodness: “No one prospers without rendering benefit to others”
- The YKK Philosophy

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DB Custom wrote:
I wear the Texas Poker on a Titanium curb chain with Ti fasteners, everything Ti. I sleep with it, only take it off to bathe and it goes right back on when I dry off. So it’s with me, on me, virtually every minute of every day. There is no discernible wear from the Ti split ring in the mounting hole at the end of the light in spite of how it swings around all the time. I’ve slept with it for over 5 years so it’s automatic to keep it on my chest when I turn at night, doesn’t wake me up at all.

The copper can get green from sweat, but of course that’s to be expected. I clean the green off if it gets like that but usually leave the copper dark. Once in great while I polish it and it looks like new again, only to fairly quickly darken of course.

I sometimes wish it were a switched light instead of a twisty but then it would have to be larger. As a 10440 light it’s quite small but the head allows for a nice reflector that works really well, with a beam profile much like a larger light. Fred told me he sourced the reflector from Dereelight but I’ve never found it’s match, have tried though. I try to remember to re-lube it with Nyogel on a regular basis but sometimes I forget and the dry o-ring reminds me when I charge the Efest cell. So far though, all is well.

This light was as expensive as it was primarily because I wanted to use a 1” bar of Surgical Grade Ti that I’d had for years and had sort of special meaning to me. It took a lot of extra time cutting this small light out of the big solid bar. So a custom could/should be able to be made for less monies.

My scratch made 18500 is not really similar to the Poker other than that it’s Ti/Cu… the Ti is 6Al4V in my light where the Photon Fanatic light is a higher grade, technically 6Al4V Eli. In my light the copper is Tellurium Copper for an easier machining. And of course my light is a quad, recently re-fitted with Samsung LH351D 80 CRI 5000K emitters while the Poker has a 5000K Nichia 219C after a lot of trial with other emitters. The Poker came to me making 135 lumens, it is now in the low 700’s after a brief stint in the 1100’s with an XP-L. I actually use my 18500 Quad a lot more than the Poker, I uh, tend to forget the Poker is around my neck. Big Smile


Thanks for sharing your reflections. Smile
I also sleep with my neck light. Sometimes it moves around the shoulder and I wake up with it being on my back. Or it pulls against my neck. Nevertheless it’s well worth having it on me when I wake up at night.

You say you’d prefer it with a switch…I don’t like when my neck light requires me to use both hands. Most of my neck lights do though. I’m thinking that tail e-switch would be ideal. Or side switch on a flat light, like Tini.

You mention a lot of trial before settling on 219c. How long since you settled on it?
Aside from the initial change, did you decide to switch a driver at some point?

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I’ve rebuilt it many times. It only made 135 lumens when I got it. I’ve built maybe 4 10mm drivers for it. It has 5 modes but I forgot to activate moon mode when I built the last driver, have thought about re-doing it but never got around to it.

I wear a T-Shirt to bed, have formed the habit of twisting the shirt around the light when I turn to my side… it’s totally automatic now and I don’t have to wake up for this to happen. Very seldom wake up with the light over my shoulder any more.

I don’t need two hands, this one has .5mm threads and is ultra smooth, but it’s easier to switch modes with both hands just for dexterity reasons, late at night especially. My left thumb is still on fire from the nerve damage in my neck. It actually started with my index finger over 5 years ago, now both index finger and thumb but primarily the thumb and back of hand leading from the thumb. Don’t feel what I’m supposed to feel by touch but rather a burning sensation when anything touches the thumb. I use it, sure, but I can’t feel a switch or much of anything else, just feel the escalated burn sensation on contact (and usually all the time even without contact.) Sometimes it’s worse than others. It is what it is, ya know? They repaired the disc damage in my neck, so that wicked pain is gone, but it seems it’s always something any more…

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