djozz's didn't-make-the-deadline-for-the-OLDIYfromscratchbuildcontest :-( entry

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djozz
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djozz's didn't-make-the-deadline-for-the-OLDIYfromscratchbuildcontest :-( entry

Hi, yesterday I finally had a full day at home with the family away, so I started on the overdue from-scratch-build. I entered the competition in the hand-made category, but did not have any serious time to build it until now. It is a complicated variation of a 9V light I built a few years ago with a Luxeon Rebel inside, and I have no idea if it will work in the end. It is all pretty small stuff (although not as small as what RufusBduck does) and I tend to always mess initially nice ideas up and come up with a sloppy end-result. So be it Smile.

I formed the ideas when the contest was annouced in june and wrote up the design. The final design is the one with the arrow, some parts that i wanted to use are around it:

The terrible thing about this design is that it has hardly any heat-dissipation, and I could not think of a nice way to incude it because any seriously usable finning would make this light big and ugly. So I see this built just as a challenge; can it be done the way I want it?

And because I do not have abide the hand-build rules of the competition I can use these Tongue OutTongue Out:

No fancy lathe-stuff or anything, but it does make life a bit easier Smile

 

Ok, I started off with some brass profile, measured the places where the holes would be, drilled the holes and hand-tapped the threading:

Unfortunately I did not have the 3.3mm drill bit for the M4 screwholes, so I used 3.5mm. The threading is quite loose now (here I go already, sloppy from start Sad ). Well, it is not unlike the threading of many chinese flashlights Smile . Here's a picture of the tapping in action:

I sawed the bit a wanted to use, drawed where the saw cuts should be, and fitted some leds in place (that is, on the outside, they will be on inside finally, and the two outer leds will be different ones). And it appeared I had done some wrong assumptions in the design: the Nichia219 was not 3mm square but 4mm, and the MT-G2 (it is a 2700K 90 CRI one) was not 10mm square, but 9mm. Had to correct some lines.

I did as many cuts as possible with the bandsaw, but I could not have finished it without the good old fretsaw Smile

This is the little 3D-puzzle that came out:

 

Or, with some fancy lighting:

djozz(2013) 'no title' Wink

I had to make two raised bits for the 'screw switches' to make contact:

 

I sawed little rounds from some messing I had around and filed two notches to shape. I put some solder paste under the little rounds and used a small blow-torch to solder it together. then I sanded it flat and into shape:

 

So far, so good, and now on to something I wasn't comfortable about at all: the reflowing of the leds. I could not think of another way than just reflow everything in one go, but that would be nerve-wrecking, and I needed a separate carrier to assemble it all on, put it on the hotplate and keep everything still when removing it again. So I sanded a bit of aluminium nice 'n flat and off I went:

The block at the bottom is the hotplate (a converted 12V solder iron connected to a adjustable power supply), the block on top is cold, the assembly is on a aluminium slider.

For those who like to see me fumbling on the square mm, I made a video of the first attempt:

The result of the first attempt being that everything sticked together quite neatly, but when connecting a 9V battery just the two outer leds lit up (I was lucky that they did not blow). Apparently under the MT-G led it shorted. So I tried again and again, and an hour later it looked acceptable again, but when connecting the battery: nothing, no led lit up at all! I did check before placing the led which side of the MT-G2 was the plus (there are no visible clues on the led unfortunately), but now I doubted that, so I removed the MT-G2 and checked, Yell ouch, it was indeed reversed, how did I manage that?? So I placed it correctly and went on with the fiddling and fumbling. Eventually I ripped off the solder pad of the Nichia, so having no spare one I decided on replacing it with an old XM-L from the spare-led box, being a bit bigger it would hold the pieces of brass together a bit better as well. Finally, after two and a half hours of trying and error and at least 6 heating sessions (I feel sorry for the leds Innocent),  I ended up with this, not quite as neat as planned, but it stayed one piece and looked like it could work:

And work it did Laughing (victory!):

The three leds in series create a nice moonlight, probably the only mode of which the heat can really be handled by this light Smile.

So to bed I went, had a bad night without much sleep, and this morning, with a proper headache, I did some smelly chemical polyester casting on the assembly (to make sure the headache lasts for the whole day Yell). I first smeared the screws with (waxy) mold release agent and screwed them in place (to keep the screw holes open during the casting), I have never done such a thing before, I hope it works, and that I can get the screws out again after the setting of the polyester.

Now a little plastic container was made from an old blister packaging, and some polyester resin was mixed with hardener and stirred well.

A small layer was poored in the container and the led assembly was slowly placed.

And then slowly the rest of the polyester mix was poored (I did not need the syringe it appeared) and the container was covered with another piece of the packaging (polyester hardens less well near air contact).

As you can see the polyester has a refractive index quite close to the silicone Smile

And now wait for a few days to let the polyester harden well. In fact it may take me two weeks before I have the time to continue on this.

I really hope that the light is going to work in the end...

 

Edited by: djozz on 08/07/2013 - 10:07
dave_
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Awesome 3D Puzzle! Beer
Interesting Idea with the resin casting, I am quite excited how that will work out! Smile

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dave_ wrote:
Awesome 3D Puzzle! Beer Interesting Idea with the resin casting, I am quite excited how that will work out! :-)
^ This!  Cool stuff man!  I can't wait to see what the end result looks like.  8)
mattthemuppet
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that is such a cool idea, I’m seriously impressed. I never would have thought of using the casing as the electrical circuit! Looking forward to seeing how the resin pans out.

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Awesomely creative. Looking forward to following your progress.

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Impressive work there Djozz! Smile

Looking forward to see the end result. Take your time!  No need to rush it! Beer

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And polyester resin huh? Very interesting indeed! Will definitely be watching to see what you do with this!

Nice work!

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A Jenga light! Really cool idea. Congrats on getting the reflow done. That looked very tricky.

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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Very unique.   I look forward to seeing the rest of this.

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Very nice! Love the creativity of tying the power via the leds.


 

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Thanks for the replies guys, but don't hold your breath too much, after a few hours of polyester setting it now looks quite a bit less pretty:

This is from the polyester shrinking a bit while setting, causing it to delaminate from surfaces. I had that in the Rebel build as well a few years ago, and that one kept working, but that led was conventionally wired up and the housing was one solid piece of brass, not with all those solder joints that can be ripped loose, and pieces of brass that can short against each other, I even think I see domes lifted off by the shrinking resin, uh oohh Yell.

Fingers crossed...

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Rufusbduck wrote:
A Jenga light! Really cool idea. Congrats on getting the reflow done. That looked very tricky.

It was tricky, and now thinking back on how it went I think it would have been much easier if I had taped the upper edges of the brass simply together with kapton tape

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I was wondering how much that stuff would shrink. I believe there is some stuff that can be bought, that will shrink very little. The stuff that they use to do those scorpions and spiders inside the globes. I will have to look that up. I hope they still work for you when it's done.

 

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What does I say. Cheating? I love it. I smiled the whole way through reading chapter one. I cant wait for chapter two. I must be on the wrong pain killers as you guys are so creative with what you do. Thanks for doing the build. Better late than never aye. Cheers.

 

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

                      "My man mousehole needs one too"

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djozz wrote:

I even think I see domes lifted off by the shrinking resin, uh oohh Yell.

Have you checked the thermal expansion coefficient of your resin? Maye the domes get pressen on again when you fire up the MT-G2. Wink
(Casting electronics in resin can lead to interesting results. Still excited how it works out LOL

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It would probably work if the casting was done on layers with a thinner layer at first.

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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This is really cool, & you have also given me an idea for a ‘standard’ torch mod in regards to the power circuit.

Beer Beer Beer
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Old-Lumens wrote:
I was wondering how much that stuff would shrink. I believe there is some stuff that can be bought, that will shrink very little. The stuff that they use to do those scorpions and spiders inside the globes. I will have to look that up. I hope they still work for you when it's done.

This is the resin that is used for casting insects and stuff, it says so on the packaging. It might just stick better to the chitin skeleton of insects (and scorpions) than to silicone and brass...

FmC wrote:
This is really cool, & you have also given me an idea for a 'standard' torch mod in regards to the power circuit. Beer Beer :beer:

That is great, even if the light fails, this has been both a good read and an inspiration for other mods. I'm a happy man Smile.

 

And because I just had to know before carrying on  I did a 'test drilling' through the plastic towards the battery poles and probed with the battery connected to two paperclips:

 

Still in business Cool....

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Applause, hollering and whistles.

 

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.

 

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djozz wrote:

Old-Lumens wrote:
I was wondering how much that stuff would shrink. I believe there is some stuff that can be bought, that will shrink very little. The stuff that they use to do those scorpions and spiders inside the globes. I will have to look that up. I hope they still work for you when it’s done.

This is the resin that is used for casting insects and stuff, it says so on the packaging. It might just stick better to the chitin skeleton of insects (and scorpions) than to silicone and brass…

FmC wrote:
This is really cool, & you have also given me an idea for a ‘standard’ torch mod in regards to the power circuit. Beer Beer Beer

That is great, even if the light fails, this has been both a good read and an inspiration for other mods. I’m a happy man Smile.

 

And because I just had to know before carrying on  I did a ‘test drilling’ through the plastic towards the battery poles and probed with the battery connected to two paperclips:

 

Still in business Cool….

Drilling – resin – Jurassic Park!

Were you able to get any of the DNA out also :?

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Too cool.

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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Friday was my last day at home alone, and worked as fast as I could to finish the built, I just wanted it done.

As I had tested: the cast-inside-polyester light worked Smile, so there was reason to go on. I had to remove the excess polyester by sawing and sanding. i could do most of the rough work with the small bandsaw and the electric sander, but the top part with the raised bits had to be done by hand, and it gave me a little insight into what the work would have been if the original hand-build rules were to be followed in the whole build Yell (I admire you hand-build guys for that). Then I hand-sanded all sides with 400 and then 800 sand paper, and polished the brass a bit with the Dremel. The Dremel was not good for polishing the polyester sides of the light. I managed to get the polyester reasonably clear by rubbing it endlessly with ordinary copier paper, I think it works by heating up and melting the top layer of the plastic by the rubbing movement .

Since animated GIF's are all the rave at the moment at BLF Cool, I tought myself how to make them (though they are not as neat as some others I have seen), and so you will be bothered by no less than three of them Tongue Out. Here's one, of the cutaway of the excess polyester (I was lucky, the screws came out of the polyester easily):

Then I made the battery connections. I used a 9V battery connector and drilled away the rivets of the connection bits:

 

I used small brass M2 screws to attach them to the light.

For the switch-screws I wanted flat-head brass M4 screws, I did not have any and could not easily find some, so I used conical ones and soldered a partly bored out nut onto it. Then sanded it into shape. (million dollar question: what is the flashlight in the following picture Smile)

 

 

So here is the end result, a wireless Laughing, 3-emitter, 4-mode, 9V flashlight, not as slick as planned, but I think it is charming:

joehoe, another animation LaughingLaughing:

operation and currents (test batteries are a Duracell 170mAh NiMh and a Conrad Energy 200mAh NiMh, freshly charged, all currents were recorded 5 seconds after switch-on, I don't think the light would survive the usual 30 seconds, apart from the moonlight modus Innocent, you can monitor the MT-G2 on your skin directly on the back of the emitter):

both screws loose: moonlight, all leds light up, the pretty mode), current 0.7mA with both batteries

left screw tightened, MT-G2 + XR-E light up, too hot within 20 seconds): 0.5A with Duracell, 0.7A with Conrad battery

right screw tightened, MT-G2 + XM-L light up, too hot within 20 seconds: 0.55A with Duracell, 0.8A with Conrad battery

both screws tightened, just the MT-G2 lights up, with 5s manual stepdown (IF bleeding hot, THEN loosen screws, fast): 1.7A with Duracell, 3A with Conrad battery

(The batteries drain about as fast as the light heats up whenever leaving moonlight Evil )

I do not have a fresh 9V alkaline at the moment, I will add that later. Also I could not do output measurements because I do not have a integrating sphere, and a ceiling bounce measurement is impossible with a so broad flood (trust me, I tried, I even did an attempt to direct the light to the ceiling putting the light inside an old bicycle front lamp reflector). You can guess however that 3A through the MT-G2 will output about 2000 led-lumen (before the emitter heats up lightning-fast), so say that 50% of that actually manages to leave the light, 1000 lumens is pretty ok for this ieniemienie light Laughing.

Seemingly the light has just useless modes, with a moonlight that is 1 lumen the most, and three other modes that can't be used for more than seconds. But I found it is actually nice when it is used on empty alkalines, the direct drive MT-G2 squeezes the last bit out of them, with usable output most of the time. But let's not try to justify this light, it is built for fun Cool.

Some beamshots, first is MT-G2+XR-E 2.5 meters from corner, second is just MT-G2 2.5 meters from corner, third is MT-G2 20cm from wall. Exposure is automatic (phone camera), the idea is that the pictures give an impression of the beam, not the brightness (but it is pretty bright alright Smile)

The side-by-side emitters give nice shading effects in which you can also see what the difference in die size does, here's the shadow of my desk lamp, the MT-G2 plus XR-E together:

So that's it, I loved thinking about the design, and it was huge fun doing the build, and was a bit surprised that it actually worked. I can think of endless improvements on the design and how to build it now, but I doubt that I will ever actually make another one, the build was more a proof of concept than anything else. I will end with yet another animation of the light (on moonlight mode), and a gallery of the light together with some predecessors in its evolution that I build a few years ago. Thanks for reading Smile.

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Still a cool idea that I think you could improve on if you wanted to. I like the jigsaw effect. Since it kinda looks like Wall-e’s head, maybe it could have copper hair for heat dissapation. Arrow Right

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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Rufusbduck wrote:
Still a cool idea that I think you could improve on if you wanted to. I like the jigsaw effect. Since it kinda looks like Wall-e's head, maybe it could have copper hair for heat dissapation. :arrow:

The hair idea sounds cool, I just thought about how to add fins, but wiring sounds much more appropriate here Smile . By the time the next contest is started I may change my mind about not building a successor, but I think (if I have the time to join the contest next year) I am more likely to try something completely different then.

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That’s cool, Djozz. It seems you have a talent for the craft of modding.

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that really is such a cool light. I think it’s my favourite build of anything I’ve ever seen on here. It’s just so… neat!

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Well blow me down. Let there be light, and there was light. Well done djozz. The thing actually works not that I ever doubted your abilities. May I say a crazy light for a crazy ______ ? Cheers.

 

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.

 

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Love the idea, love how you pulled it off, and absolutely love the animated gif’s showing it off! Well done, on many fronts!

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djozz wrote:

Rufusbduck wrote:
Still a cool idea that I think you could improve on if you wanted to. I like the jigsaw effect. Since it kinda looks like Wall-e’s head, maybe it could have copper hair for heat dissapation. Arrow Right

The hair idea sounds cool, I just thought about how to add fins, but wiring sounds much more appropriate here Smile . By the time the next contest is started I may change my mind about not building a successor, but I think (if I have the time to join the contest next year) I am more likely to try something completely different then.


The only way I’d build another raygun is if I were offered way too much. The idea is now stale even though I could do it better(maybe) the second time around. The hardest part is coming up with an idea that is worth putting all the time and effort into. The danger is coming up with that idea.

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

Scott

djozz
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Thanks for all the compliments guys, I guess OL's competition brought a lot of build energy out of everyone joining. Now my serious build time is used up until next summer I'm afraid, from now it is back to modest late night modding for me, but that's fine as well Smile

And now I'm going on a 5 day bicycle trip LaughingSmile, leaving the family at home this time (I get 1 week leave from the family every year and that is now) . I just take some small EDC lights with me (with the DQG 18650 tiny NW clamped on the handle bar at night).

Cheers!

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Nice machines you have there! Smile

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