TR-J18 upgrade options?

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Jonney_boy
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Yes I did try to jump the tail-cap and still nothing (I just used a screw to do it with).

Richie086
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cop wrote:
I opened up my J18, noticed that there is a spring soldered onto the driver. I see IO’s driver, there is no spring there..So should i buy new spring & solder onto the new driver or i re-use the spring on the original driver? No harm using the original spring right?

Also, what is the size (diameter) of o-ring to buy, to fit the rear tail cap there? there are 2 gaps there; and what is the size of the “press to on light that rubber”? (Dunno what it is called.)

**Erm, by any chance, anyone know TF-100; is the LEDs also in series? Cos thinking to get driver for both lights.

Thanks.

Hey Cop,

You can reuse the spring if you like, but try and be careful when desoldering it and then soldering it to the replacement driver. If you get them to hot, you can anneal them (melt them) rendering it useless. If you’re going to perform these types of mods, it’s a good idea to get some spare springs from either IOS or Fastech in various sizes and keep in a spare parts bin.

I don’t have a J18, so you’d have to wait for someone else to chime in and answer your other questions.

Here is a link for a spring assortment.
http://intl-outdoor.com/goldsilver-plated-springs-for-drivers-and-switch...

Here is a link for some rubber boots.
http://intl-outdoor.com/components-rubber-boot-c-57_115.html

Richie

Tom E
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 Johnny, had some time to look at my J18 and refresh my memory on this... For the center spring, I used a good qual silver tinned spring, little over-sized from stock but works well, but of course you could xfer the stock spring. If you notice, the stock driver has a really wide ground contact on the spring side - this I think is for proper contact for the brass retainer ring assembly. The new IO driver (or KD) doesn't have anything near that wide - it just has 4 contact pads (see the IO product pages for a photo of what I'm talking about). That big spring, that it looks like you soldered, I ignored but still use it. Once the retaining ring is screwed down, the retaining ring itself makes contact on the board. So, I widened the contact pads by adding small pieces of copper tape next to 2 of the pads, and soldering them to the adjoining pads. Now, I can't recall if this actually fixed the problem or not.

 So what you can do to test this is with the batt tubes removed, stack 2 batts on the driver spring, and use a jumper wire (I use 12 gauge stranded wire) to go from the batt neg down to one of those contact pads on the driver. I just did this myself and it lights up the light, so should work. Your mod of soldering that big spring may be doing the same thing, I'm not sure, but I took a different approach of making sure the brass retaining ring makes strong contact with those pads on the driver.

Jonney_boy
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Tom, thanks for taking the time to pull apart your light to help….

I gave it another try tonight.. I removed the large spring, soldered some copper tape to one of the pads, stacked 2 batteries together like you said on the center spring and put the copper tape straight to the battery negative… the light gave me a quick flash.. then nothing…

ended up removing the spring, soldering all 4 pads together, and reassembling.. nothing…….

One thing I did notice..
18650’s… if I put the batteries into the flash light and jump with a screw/clip at the end to bypass the tail cap.. I get a small spark… If I use the 22650’s.. I get a bigger spark.. so the driver is trying to pull power…. just not driving the lights.

At this point, i’m starting to wonder if I
a) got a dud driver.
b) got a huge dud light.
c) really suck at modding lights.. hahaha…

Tom E
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Oh boy, running out of ideas... Maybe it is the light since this is the 2nd driver - maybe blown emitter? Can you check the emitter wiring?

Richie086
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It actually sounds like when I upgraded my AK-47 with the KD driver and tried using my Trustfire 5000mAh cells. They didn’t have the power to get the light to work and would only flash for a second.

Richie

blueb8llz
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yup, sounds like the same problem i had when i tried putting 3×18650 in my modded ak47. bright flash just like you mentioned.
but i just kept playing with the switch , tried switching modes lots of times, then eventually low was able to come on. but everytime i tried switching to a higher mode, bright flash and then nuthing.

but when i switched over to some 26650’s the problem went away. so if i was thinking positive, id say its the batteries. but thats a very expensive risk to take to buy some better 26650’s and the problem sstill exists.

but thats wierd, tom e used the same batteries in his and it works, so i dunno now.

Jonney_boy
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Tom, how do you take apart the light to get to the emitters? I don’t “think” that’s the problem as the light was working before with the stock driver (just it was really dim).

As for not enough power from the batteries…. I have to clarify that I only saw the flash once or twice… during a course of 40-50 try’s…. and it was not at “full power” as I would have expected.

When I modded a small sun zy-t13 a few weeks back (added a pot).. I had the “bright flash” when the pot was turned up to high… I remembered that flash was at “full power”.

cop
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Jonney_boy wrote:
Tom, how do you take apart the light to get to the emitters? .

1)Unscrew the head.
2)Unscrew that backing plate.(that copper plate with 2 holes at side)
3)Pull out drive- shake it abit or pry out with little force if it is stuck.(Mine just rest there)
4)You should see 2 + screws inside the head, take it out. It is screw to lock the reflector.
5)Anti clockwise open the top “bezel or crown”? o-ring & glass will come out.
6) With a little tug, that reflector will come out, exposing the emitters & wires within.

Jonney_boy
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ok.. quick update… I don’t think it’s the emitters or the wiring..
Reason is that I put the stock driver back in and the light works again (like it did before I yanked the driver out).
What I mean is…. the light will turn on, all the modes work… looking at the head, all the led’s do light up…. the problem now is that it’s very dim (hence the original reason I yanked out the driver).

I mean… on high..its not much brighter than my single R5 flashlight with a 14450……….

Pokasaha
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Jonney_boy wrote:
ok.. quick update… I don’t think it’s the emitters or the wiring..
Reason is that I put the stock driver back in and the light works again (like it did before I yanked the driver out).
What I mean is…. the light will turn on, all the modes work… looking at the head, all the led’s do light up…. the problem now is that it’s very dim (hence the original reason I yanked out the driver).

I mean… on high..its not much brighter than my single R5 flashlight with a 14450……….

I wonder if it could be that your flashlights emitters are connected in parallel instead of series? This could explain the fact that it works fine with the original driver. Could you take the reflector apart and take a photo?

Richie086
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Pokasaha wrote:
Jonney_boy wrote:
ok.. quick update… I don’t think it’s the emitters or the wiring..
Reason is that I put the stock driver back in and the light works again (like it did before I yanked the driver out).
What I mean is…. the light will turn on, all the modes work… looking at the head, all the led’s do light up…. the problem now is that it’s very dim (hence the original reason I yanked out the driver).

I mean… on high..its not much brighter than my single R5 flashlight with a 14450……….

I wonder if it could be that your flashlights emitters are connected in parallel instead of series? This could explain the fact that it works fine with the original driver. Could you take the reflector apart and take a photo?

Pokasaha, it’s funny you mention that. My Skyray 9x T6 light is wired 3s3p and my Trustfire AK-47 is wired fully series. When I tried to use the Skyray driver in the AK47, the light wouldn’t work. I was sure the grounds were in proper contact, but I came to the same conclusion with my lights that perhaps the drivers were not compatible due to different wiring. Although Jonney’s light is a Trustfire J18, it’s not unreasonable to think the drivers are not compatible. I’d like to confirm this somehow.

Richie

relic38
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Richie086 wrote:

Pokasaha, it’s funny you mention that. My Skyray 9x T6 light is wired 3s3p and my Trustfire AK-47 is wired fully series. When I tried to use the Skyray driver in the AK47, the light wouldn’t work. I was sure the grounds were in proper contact, but I came to the same conclusion with my lights that perhaps the drivers were not compatible due to different wiring. Although Jonney’s light is a Trustfire J18, it’s not unreasonable to think the drivers are not compatible. I’d like to confirm this somehow.

I’d guess that the drivers are not compatible. Emitters in 3S3P config are driven around 10V. Emitters in 9S1P are around 30V. I doubt a driver designed for one of these general voltage ranges (8-12V and 25-35V) is going to be OK with the other range.
Your solution would be to rewire the emitters to match what the driver should have for a load.

Welcome the night.

My Reviews   My Mods    http://budgetlightforum.com/search?

Richie086
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relic38 wrote:
Richie086 wrote:
Pokasaha, it’s funny you mention that. My Skyray 9x T6 light is wired 3s3p and my Trustfire AK-47 is wired fully series. When I tried to use the Skyray driver in the AK47, the light wouldn’t work. I was sure the grounds were in proper contact, but I came to the same conclusion with my lights that perhaps the drivers were not compatible due to different wiring. Although Jonney’s light is a Trustfire J18, it’s not unreasonable to think the drivers are not compatible. I’d like to confirm this somehow.
I’d guess that the drivers are not compatible. Emitters in 3S3P config are driven around 10V. Emitters in 9S1P are around 30V. I doubt a driver designed for one of these general voltage ranges (8-12V and 25-35V) is going to be OK with the other range. Your solution would be to rewire the emitters to match what the driver should have for a load.

Thank you Relic38, that just answered a lot of questions I’ve had.

Richie

Pokasaha
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relic38 wrote:
Richie086 wrote:
Pokasaha, it’s funny you mention that. My Skyray 9x T6 light is wired 3s3p and my Trustfire AK-47 is wired fully series. When I tried to use the Skyray driver in the AK47, the light wouldn’t work. I was sure the grounds were in proper contact, but I came to the same conclusion with my lights that perhaps the drivers were not compatible due to different wiring. Although Jonney’s light is a Trustfire J18, it’s not unreasonable to think the drivers are not compatible. I’d like to confirm this somehow.
I’d guess that the drivers are not compatible. Emitters in 3S3P config are driven around 10V. Emitters in 9S1P are around 30V. I doubt a driver designed for one of these general voltage ranges (8-12V and 25-35V) is going to be OK with the other range. Your solution would be to rewire the emitters to match what the driver should have for a load.

Yeah, exactly. And this is why I ask. I’ve just ordered this torch and a driver and would like to know if they are compatible. If there is this normal wiring, these combined parallel/series solutions are ok but if the leds are put on a circuit board as in my friends torch I’m in trouble.

relic38
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If you ordered the TR-J18, that is the right driver, 7 LEDs. The AK47 is 9 LEDs.

Welcome the night.

My Reviews   My Mods    http://budgetlightforum.com/search?

Pokasaha
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relic38 wrote:
If you ordered the TR-J18, that is the right driver, 7 LEDs. The AK47 is 9 LEDs.

Yeah, I’m just concerned that are some of these TR-J18 wired differently since there seems to be these not getting on issues and also you can see that there are several models of this lamp sold. You can tell it from the differences in the body.

Jonney_boy
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I managed to take my j18 apart and can confirm that the led’s are wired in series.

http://i1137.photobucket.com/albums/n512/Jonathan_Lam/flashlight/IMG_443...

Pokasaha
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Jonney_boy wrote:
I managed to take my j18 apart and can confirm that the led’s are wired in series.

http://i1137.photobucket.com/albums/n512/Jonathan_Lam/flashlight/IMG_443...

Thank you mate. Smile This is good to know.

Jonney_boy
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Update, with nothing to loose, I decided to play with the driver a bit.

The J18 driver I got looks almost the same as the ak-47 driver found here

http://budgetlightforum.com/node/18897#node-18897

and looking at the post by richie, he mentioned that one of the resistor was loose.
Well, I am not sure if mine is the same, but I do not have a resistor on that far spot….. does not even look like anything was there to start with (this light did work properly in the beginning tho).

Anyhow, I got my 20 ohm trim pot I had left over from modding my small sun zy-t13.. soldered it into the spot, and just played with it. Turning the trim pot I can make the flash light brighter.. up to a point…… once you pass this point the flashlight will give you a very bright flash then shut off…

http://i1137.photobucket.com/albums/n512/Jonathan_Lam/flashlight/IMG_444...

Using 3 cells, I just tuned it until I got the max brightness without getting the bright flash followed by nothing…..

To be honest, I do not think this is a proper fix. The light is still not as bright as it should be (I am showing just a hair over 2 amps draw at the tail with 3 cells.. not sure what this works out to be) and the driver gets HOT. I mean that round coil on the driver gets up to ouchie temps in about 2 seconds when I was holding it.

What I can see is that, I think I do in fact have a driver problem.. or a really bad battery problem.. haha..

Jon.

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One more update.

The light is brighter with 2 cells…
two 26650 TF flames I am drawing just shy of 6 amps at the tail.. dropping fast.. haha…. down to 4.5 amps in under 3 seconds.

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Jonney_boy wrote:
To be honest, I do not think this is a proper fix. The light is still not as bright as it should be (I am showing just a hair over 2 amps draw at the tail with 3 cells.. not sure what this works out to be) and the driver gets HOT. I mean that round coil on the driver gets up to ouchie temps in about 2 seconds when I was holding it.

What I can see is that, I think I do in fact have a driver problem.. or a really bad battery problem.. haha.. Jon.

About 2.1 amps with 3 cells is grossing 23.31 watts which is very low. At 4.5 amps using 2 cells, you’re looking at grossing 33.3 watts, which is the same as a stock AK-47 with only 2 sense resistors on the driver.

Richie

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Ok, one more update. The light seems to be pulling less and less amps. On 2 cells I am now only able to pull 2.3 – 2.4 amps and on 3 cells, about 2 amps. Seeing how all the led’s seem to be working, wiring seems to be “in tact”.. and batteries are able to (at least for a short while) pull 6A without the protection kicking in.. I’m thinking it has to be the driver..

so… one last try…. I orderd one more driver from IO this time (the last one, which looked the same was the customer programed one from KD.. which looks identical to the IO one).

fingers crossed. I will let you guys know when I get the new driver delivered and installed Smile

thanks.

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Jonney_boy wrote:
Ok, one more update. The light seems to be pulling less and less amps. On 2 cells I am now only able to pull 2.3 – 2.4 amps and on 3 cells, about 2 amps. Seeing how all the led’s seem to be working, wiring seems to be “in tact”.. and batteries are able to (at least for a short while) pull 6A without the protection kicking in.. I’m thinking it has to be the driver..

so… one last try…. I orderd one more driver from IO this time (the last one, which looked the same was the customer programed one from KD.. which looks identical to the IO one).

fingers crossed. I will let you guys know when I get the new driver delivered and installed Smile

thanks.

Yeah, 17 watts – 22 watts is no way correct. It should be at least up into the mid to upper 30 watts range. Keep the updates coming.

Richie

Pokasaha
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Jonney_boy wrote:
I managed to take my j18 apart and can confirm that the led’s are wired in series.

http://i1137.photobucket.com/albums/n512/Jonathan_Lam/flashlight/IMG_443...

Hey, I got mine today. Can’t figure out, how to remove the reflector? Are there not a custom drop-in module? Should the driver be screwed out to gain access to the screws holding the reflector?

Btw the light force doesn’t impress with the originall driver at all. My modded TR-DF003 with three xm-l has the same brightness or even brighter.. This has tighter spot though.

Pokasaha
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Pokasaha wrote:
Jonney_boy wrote:
I managed to take my j18 apart and can confirm that the led’s are wired in series.

http://i1137.photobucket.com/albums/n512/Jonathan_Lam/flashlight/IMG_443...

Hey, I got mine today. Can’t figure out, how to remove the reflector? Are there not a custom drop-in module? Should the driver be screwed out to gain access to the screws holding the reflector?

Btw the light force doesn’t impress with the originall driver at all. My modded TR-DF003 with three xm-l has the same brightness or even brighter.. This has tighter spot though.

Uh oh.. just figured out myself. damn. This is not going to fit my purposes to be disassembled and used in a custom made diving lighthead.. I thought it would’ve been something like this:

Pokasaha
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Pretty amazing test results with the Intl outdoor shop driver!

From the driver to the leds: 3.04 A / 22 V = 66.6 W
Tailcap: 6.04 A / 12.12 V = 73.2 W

So this driver seems to be also really efficient: 90.9 %

I’m back on the drawing board. Gonna build a whole new lighthead suitable for diving with a battery canister..

Tom E
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Agree - I measured 5,500 lumens with the IOS driver using 3 KK batteries - swapped my mod'ed one for a stock, now ordered another IOS driver - will do the same.

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Tom E wrote:

Agree – I measured 5,500 lumens with the IOS driver using 3 KK batteries – swapped my mod’ed one for a stock, now ordered another IOS driver – will do the same.


+1.. thanks Tom Smile

The only way to do a great work is to love what you do.

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Tom E wrote:

Agree – I measured 5,500 lumens with the IOS driver using 3 KK batteries – swapped my mod’ed one for a stock, now ordered another IOS driver – will do the same.

Didn’t quite get the last sentence, did you take out the IOS driver and put back the original or what? Did you mean you’re also building a dive light by that “will do the same”?

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