Making a 12-Up out of Mini-Mags and Nichias. It's Finished and BEAM SHOTS are up now!!

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Old-Lumens
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Making a 12-Up out of Mini-Mags and Nichias. It's Finished and BEAM SHOTS are up now!!

I have seen this type of light before. Nothing is new under the sun, but I keep visualizing the finished light and decided I might see if I can make it look like what I already have pictured in my mind.

12up1a

12up1b

12up1c

I don't even have four lights the same color yet...

 

12 Nichia 219s, 4 of the NANJG 3 amp drivers (master/slave), 4 TIR optics, 4 (maybe cut down) Mini-Mags, some copper and a cut down Judco switch.

I have no clue as to how this is all going to come out, or if it will even make it past the circular file, but I just have this idea in my head and can't get rid of it till I try.

Thanks to Rich and to all the manufacturers of those crazy looking four headed lights, for keeping this idea alive till now.

 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

03-30-13

I have done a little today. Not much actual work though. Here's the only thing I managed to get done.

12up1d

It's to hold the four heads together. It's not very pretty at all. Pretty shabby at best, but, it's hand work. It's Aluminum sheet and too thin, but it's what I had.

 

12up1e

It fits and that's the most important thing.

12up1f

I decided on LED Mini-Mag hosts. I am going to need the extra head length for heat sink and all the wiring. Oh, I hate that part...Frown

 

 12up1g

I managed to get the tail end plate made today as well. It's copper and the center copper pipe will be soldered to it later. Made the same way as the front one. Just a piece of plate, mark the holes, drill and Dremel them out. Some filing on the outer edges, to make them somewhat close and it's done.

12up1h

12up1i

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

03-31-13

 Time for a break. I've been working out in the shop for several hours. I have all the heads milled out and the copper couplings milled out. I have the components laid out and I have drilled for wiring.

12up2a

Heads, drivers, heat sinks copper couplings, led stars and contact plates.

 

 

12up2b

Since the positive wires go straight from the batteries to the led stars, I need to get past the driver. I opened up one of the thru holes on each driver, so the positive wires will be able to get past the drivers.

 

 

12up2c

I have drilled all four heads, so the wires can pass out of them and they will all end up in the center 1/2" copper pipe.

 

12up2d

The copper couplings have been slotted, for wire clearance.

 

12up2e

The contact plates will be for the batery positives to touch against.

I still have plenty left to do.

  • Reflow 12 leds
  • Wire the stars
  • Wire the drivers
  • Cut down a Judco switch
  • Cut down four bodies and thread them for tail caps
  • Put the "pills" together
  • Wire everything up

 

12up2f

LEDs are on stars

 

12up2g

I cut the wire needed to wire up everything. How the Hell am I going to stuff all that wire into one 1/2" copper tube? I didn't really think about it, till I got all the wire laid out. 5 wires in the head for the Master and 4 wires each, for the other heads, plus the switch wires.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 04/01/2013

12up3a

This could should be an April Fools joke, but it's not. The drivers are wired.

 

12up3b

White is solid wire and is for the Master/slave circuit. Striped is Ground.

 

12up3c

Red/white is Power from the battery. The wire is soldered into the top board, which is just the contact plate for the battery+.

 

12up3d

Striped is Negative to the LED and the Positive goes right through the driver, to the LED.

They have not been bent to shape yet, just soldered. They are much longer than needed, but I would rather cut some off than to do it again. All the joints have Artic Alumina Adhesive on them. I find it helps keep the joints from loosening when bending all the wires together.

I have, over time, learned a little about soldering:

  • Flux what you want to solder, especially on driver boards.
  • Put solder on both pieces being soldered together before making the final joint.
  • A little solder is usually much better than a lot.
  • Keep the tip clean and tinned.
  • Heat the joint and let the solder run up the wire forming a cone. Results in a better joint.
  • AA adhesive on and around the joint keeps it from flexing if you are going to flex the wires a lot.

 

Or just hire someone else to do it...Tongue Out

That's it for tonight.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 4hb1a

Not much time these days. It's gotten warm here, so gardening is cutting into any flashlight time. All four heads are wired and ready to go. Now I have to cut and tap bodies, before starting final assembly. Also, these heads will have to sit a couple days, since I used Fujik (cheaper than AA), to fill the driver pockets and it seems to take days for that stuff to really harden up.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 04-03-2013

I managed to get the bodies cut down and the switch cut down. It's been difficult, to say the least. I don't think I like cutting down the bodies. They need to be done in a lathe and threaded in a lathe.

12up5a

They will take one 14500 each and I milled out the lip inside the top of the body, so the batteries come straight up against the contact plates in the heads. That gives me an extra 10mm to shorten. It ends up that the heads actually look longer than the bodies when done.

 

12up5b

Cut down 10 amp Judco switch fits in a 1/2" copper coupling or end cap.

 

12up5c

Sort of looks like a bullet, with the switch in place and the rubber cover. This is a 1/2" Copper coupling soldered to a copper end cap. I will cut it shorter later, when I go to fit everything.

Maybe I will get this all done this week-end.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

04-04-2013

Let's finish this up!

126a

The wires are together and soldered up.

 

126b

The switch is soldered up and all the wiring is done. The bottom half of the center copper stem had to be put on the wire, before soldering. Can't put it on after. Now for a little heat shrink and it's good to go.

 

126c

The top of the center stem has been soldered to the back plate.

 

126d

It's done.

 

126e

It measures 2-1/2" in diameter, 4" in length and it weight 10.9 ounces without batteries.

 

126f

The switch has a rubber boot on top.

 

I can't do beam shots yet. I do not have any IMR 14500 cells. I did test the light with 6 eneloops in 3s/2p and everything works, but that's just to test the circuits. It's not enough power to do beam shots.

I don't know when, if ever, I will get to do beam shots.

What would be a safe rating? 1 amp per LED, so about 250 lumens per LED? With the TIR optics, maybe 200 lumens per LED? So at least it should put out about 2,000 lumens as a conservative figure?  EDIT: I would chang this figure. 250 lumens@1000mA per led, so 250x12=3000 lumens and take a generous 20% off the top to be conservative, leaves us with 2400 Lumens.

I really want to see it with IMR 14500s in it!

 

04-05-2013

I made changes to the back plate so the bodies are held in place now.

12upmess

I added copper rings to the plate that hold the ends of the bodies in place. It's a much sturdier setup this way.

I am ordering some 14500 cells to test this light.

 

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Edited by: sb56637 on 08/26/2014 - 17:29
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EDIT: I ended up using Method 1, due to so many wires in method 2.

 

Wiring, that's the hardest part of this thing. I want to do Master/Slave. I'm talking about 4 boards and 4 batteries. That does not really go together with Master/Slave (at least to me it doesn't), when the boards and batteries are in four different heads and bodies.

I'm scratching my head, but it still hurts.

So, I think I have to make each battery power one 3-Up. It also has to power the "Master Driver", (I wanna say Master Blaster sooooo bad, LOL). Anyhow, that means three of the batteries have to be isolated from the drivers that will be in the heads, since the Master only gets power and it provides power to the other three drivers.    But,..... The LEDs need direct power from the positive terminals of the batteries too.

 

If I use the batteries individually, where three of them each power a 3-up and the fourth powers the forth 3-up, but it also has to power the master driver, which means, all the drivers. I think that battery is going to drop out before the rest of them.

 

What if I wired the batteries so that they are four in parallel and they all come to one junction. Then I can send power to each of the 3-ups and to the Master driver and it all draws on the batteries equally. (well, equal being if the four batteries are well matched).

Which way sounds better? See the diagram below.

Oh, which batteries? Well, I figure on four Li-ions. I would imagine they would need to be IMR. I have also thought of extending the bodies and do 12 NiMHs, but I really don't want to do that. Too costly and it's costly enough as it is.

wire1

 

What is the consensus here on which way to go?

 

Glam, glam, glam

 gl1

gl2

gl3

gl4

gl5

 gl6

gl7

 

Beam shots - nuff said...

con1

Garage Door control shot

 

low1

LOW

 

med1

MEDIUM

 

high1

HOT - I mean HIGH

 

 

 

con2

Control

 

low2

LOW

 

med2

MEDIUM

 

high2

HOT! - I mean HIGH again

 

 

 

con3

Control

 

high3

HIGH

 

 

high4

Last but not least. To the end of the pond.

 

It was a very hazy night tonight. A front is approaching and it's hot, sticky and very hazy.  That shows up in the photos and it does affect the light some.

The batteries are new Efest IMRs. I charged them before going out with the light. My feeling is that they are giving everything they can, but it's still not maxed out.

 

On high, it gets warm within a few seconds. It gets (for me), too warm in 30 seconds and I did not do any long term stuff as I felt it was not good for the light or the batteries (which get warm fast too).

It's a WOW light and a unique shelf queen, but not practical at all unless it's on low.

 

That is it, I'm done.

Thanks for watching the thread.

 

 

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you my friend, are an inspiration and a force to be reckoned with.

subscribed.

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THAT is how nichia 219s should be used – multiples of multiples :bigsmile:

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You might inspire maglite into making those four-eyes lights  Smile

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I wish Maglite would be inspired into somethingTongue Out

Tomorrow is the trip to Lowes, to look at copper fittings. The wife is concerned...

I will have to buy her another perennial for Hummingbirds, to pull this one off.

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Old-Lumens wrote:

I wish Maglite would be inspired into somethingTongue Out


Tomorrow is the trip to Lowes, to look at copper fittings. The wife is concerned…


I will have to buy her another perennial for Hummingbirds, to pull this one off.


you could hide more parts in two perennials Wink
cant wait to see how this one turns out… and maglite inspired? hahahahahahahaha.
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Wow I am excited for this!!

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And this, I gotta see. 12 219’s , wow! Gonna be serious, 4 sure! Wink

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I wanted to do a quad-triple Nichia but it’d be $60 just for the stars/LED’s…

Rich

"I am the flashlight king! I can light anything!"

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dorpmuller wrote:
I wanted to do a quad-triple Nichia but it'd be $60 just for the stars/LED's... Rich
Yep, this is not going to be a "budget light". I have everything for it, but still it's going to be over $100 just in components and hosts. I've debated it over and over again. Make and sell single lights, or make a crazy 12-up. Of course, it ain't over till it's over. Might be a flop considering the small spaces and how to connect all the drivers, etc.

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Actually I have thought of wrapping three XM-L C8 together and get something like a Fenix TK75.

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You’re right, this isn’t what I imagined you were doing. Fooled me again. Lol.

Three Tanna leaves to give him life, nine to give him movement. But what if he eats the whole bag?

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Rufusbduck wrote:
You're right, this isn't what I imagined you were doing. Fooled me again. Lol.
It isn't what I imagined either. I just decided this morning, as I was sitting at an empty work bench, in the garage.

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The OP is Updated and also I have some questions on wiring, which I put in the First Post. I need some gurus to drop by and answer them.

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No Guru here but I like method number 2.

Justin, I do believe I have 2 pieces of 1/4” aluminum plate in 6061 (I do, they’re 2 9/16×2 9/16) if you need them for this they’re yours, just holler.

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OL – i like the way you think Smile

Would you mind keeping the wrong flashlight?
Best wish, May
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PLEASE HELP ME GEARBEsT! IM LITERALLY CRYING!

 

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OL- This is a case of sharing an idea before it is formed . . but could they each be wired to turn on independently and then just control the grounds collectively via tailcap – (as with switches or pressure pads, but with one switch that turns them on from just 1 to all 4)?

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GottaZoom wrote:
OL- This is a case of sharing an idea before it is formed . . but could they each be wired to turn on independently and then just control the grounds collectively via tailcap - (as with switches or pressure pads, but with one switch that turns them on from just 1 to all 4)?
Possible, but not probable. Wiring in those tiny spaces will already be a real challenge.

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Yes. Having them come on 1-2-3-4 would be cool. That’s how my Eye40 works. I can’t figure out how the the beam profile always remains perfectly circular. You would think having just two or three heads on at the same time would leave a real wonky looking profile.

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I vote for method 2, simply to keep your battery state in sync. With independent wiring each emitter will drop out independent of the others.
There are other reasons, but this alone would be enough to convince me.

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relic38 wrote:
I vote for method 2, simply to keep your battery state in sync. With independent wiring each emitter will drop out independent of the others. There are other reasons, but this alone would be enough to convince me.
Yep, I think it's the best way to go too and that's what I am looking at doing.

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More photos in the OP.

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Nice looking bunch of parts you’ve got going one there Justin. Don’t know how you plan on reflowing all those emitters but if I may I’ll share my own very brief experience with you. I haven’t done this but a few times, but it’s been a great success. I got some solder paste from Lowes, over in the plumbing dept, called Solder-It. It was like $4.00. I have a 1/8” thick stainless steel plate that’s 6” in diameter that I got for our induction glass stove-top for when we’re canning. Our canning pot has a recess in the bottom that won’t let the induction burner stay on so the plate fills that recess and keeps continuous contact on the glass top for excellent heat control via the pot switch. So I warmed up the plate, put solder paste on the copper stars using a needle to spread it out then laid the emitter on top of the paste. Did this with 4 stars at once. Laid em on the warmed plate then turned the heat up to medium and watched closely. The flux flowed, the solder melted, the emitters sat down on the star boards and I pushed the plate over to the cold neighboring contact surface and shut the heat down. Gave it about 10-20 seconds then moved the stars to an aluminum heat sink to cool down. The boards are pristine, no blackening of any kind and the emitters are centered very nicely. All done in one shot. Had to remove the stars from the plate pretty quick as it stays hot for a very long time.

Done this way, all 12 can be reflowed in about 5 minutes. Just a thought.

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This is looking good! I like how it is going together. Home-grown TM26 or BS Terminator with 92CRI. Nice!

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i really hope this beats the living crap out of the tm26 Smile

Would you mind keeping the wrong flashlight?
Best wish, May
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Soumil wrote:

PLEASE HELP ME GEARBEsT! IM LITERALLY CRYING!

 

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Three Nichias driven well should beat one XM-L U2. This has the potential to out-lumen the TM26 or BS Terminator. It might out throw the TM26, but the Terminator will probably take the throw prize.

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This is so crazey it might just work! Shocked

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This is gonna be sick! Have you figured how you’re going to test it without 14500s?

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Sorry, I just returned to the thread to see how it was coming along. The amount of current used by the mcu will be very small and the first method only requires a wire from the master to each slave to activate it. Just wire each individual light with B+ to the LEDs but not the board, led- to the LEDs, and ground back to B-. Then run a wire from V+in on each driver back to the master. If the cells are balanced then the master will dim them all when it’s battery runs down. If they aren’t balanced then one light will dim before the others and you will know that cell is bad. If all the cells are tied together then a weak cell will pull the rest down prematurely but you won’t be able to tell. Fewer wires with version one gets my nod.

Three Tanna leaves to give him life, nine to give him movement. But what if he eats the whole bag?

Scott

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Another way to go is put all the drivers or just the master with a big stack of chips in the center copper tube along with a 5th cell. That copper plate ties all of the B-‘s together(through the casings) so you would need led- to each of the four satellite hosts. Tying the B+‘s together is optional but not necessary. What works best is not always synonymous with what can be done the best.

Three Tanna leaves to give him life, nine to give him movement. But what if he eats the whole bag?

Scott

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