DST using 3 18650's (Finished)

111 posts / 0 new
Last post

Pages

ImA4Wheelr
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/03/2013 - 14:51
Posts: 7935
Location: SC
DST using 3 18650's (Finished)

Finally, every inch of this long light is contributing to projecting photons.  The finished light looks completely stock on the outside, except for a dedomed xml2 and AR lens.

Distance to the pine tree is about 250 feet.  The tree is about 70 feet tall.  It looks close to house, but it about 150 feet behind the house from the perspective of where the picture was taken.  The emitter is just a touch too far behind the reflector when the below picture as taken (was about 284kcd at the time).  Pictures are slightly darker than real life.  Mouse over is Stanley 1M Series Lithium Ion Spotlight (54kcd unmodded):

The build is almost finished.  It holds 3 unprotected cells (18650) but can run on 1 or 2 cells too.  So it can run on Li-ion, Lipo's, Ni-mh, Ni-cad, etc.  4 AA's fit without a spacer.  The nice thing with 3 cells is that the individual cells don't have to work very hard to provide 7 amps.  So high performance cells are not required.

One of the cells passes through the switch housing.  It uses a very short tail spring.  The light has about $30 in parts as follows:

I did also fry 2 xml2 emitters being careless in a rush late one night, but they are not physically part of the finished light.  Right now running about 7 amps to the emitter and getting about 300kcd (has measured as high as 319kcd).  Not bad for a budget light. 

Tail current with 3 cells, charged to 4.15 volts resting, is:

High - 2.9 amps

Med - 1.25 amps

Low - .3 amps

It is handling the heat well.  No hint of angry blue in the beam.  This light handles an MT-G2 at 6+amps.  So this is not a surprise.

Some Build Details:

Unfortunately, the DST pill has too narrow a driver bay and the walls are not thick enough to bore out for the  Manafont 3T6 driver.  So the following was done to beef up the pill's heat sinking and to accommodate the 3T6 driver:

  • Lopped off the driver tower
  • In the hollow portion of the remaining pill, pressed in 3/4" aluminum bar stock
  • Drilled a hole through the pill and bar, and pressed in a 3/8" copper bar stock
  • Counter sunk the back of the pill to add a new driver bay.  Counter sink includes a 1/16" grove around the parameter to press the below 3/4" copper coupling into (overkill).
  • Cut a short piece of 3/4" copper coupling and split lengthwise to open up diameter.  Also cut a copper disk to press into the split 3/4" coupling.
  • Used silver bearing solder to reflow the new driver bay to the copper bar.  Also, reflowed an xml Noctigon base on the top side of the pill. 

This is a pic of the pill assembly before the reflow.  The copper coupling looks beat up because it is a reject from another project.  Just happened to be about the right size.

 

A simplified version of the above could be made if one didn't want to drill, etc.  I noticed some thin aluminum tent tubing fits snugly over the driver tower.  The tower could be cut short and then the tent tubing would press over it.  To hold the driver, a 3/4" copper coupling could be inserted in the tent tubing.  Not as secure, but should do.

 The split in the driver bay will allow easy adjustment current to the emitter via a trim pot.  Stole this idea from RaceR86's T13 mod.  The driver bay is solid and will not be going anywhere.  Stress tested it several times.  The driver board will break before damage to the pill happens.  The switch section screws up around the lower portion of the driver bay.  Covers the lower portion of the driver bay. 

Here is the driver fitted be soldering and filing down to the size of the pill. 

The trim pot really is accurate at dialing in current in this driver.  Just don't crank it all the way up like I did and fry an emitter.  I did start out lower, but got impatient adjusting.  As can be expected by the specs, most of the trim pots range is not used in this application. 

This driver gives rock solid current delivery with both 2 and 3 cells.  I got no differences in emitter current with stock resistors and also with trim pot turned up to 7amps using 2 and 3 cells.

Also sanded of the anno in the ledge that is in the DST head that the pill screws down against.  Also rapped the threads in copper tape.  Really snugged up the fit.  Both of these mods help facilitate heat sinking to the head and exterior fins.   I copper taped all the DST threads.

Here is the preliminary quick-and-dirt "tail spring".  It is equal to a very strong spring and provides a very good connection.  It works real good right now because the light is currently a twistie.  I think I will stick with this same design, but make a nicer version.

This blurry shot shows were the cells sit in the tube.  There is no driver spring.  The tail cap screws all the way down.

 Switch (Sorry for the sideways pictures):

 

There are more switch pictures at Post 53.

Edited by: ImA4Wheelr on 03/03/2014 - 13:58
zelee
zelee's picture
Offline
Last seen: 17 hours 7 min ago
Joined: 06/04/2013 - 06:53
Posts: 1973
Location: Bali, Indonesia

can’t wait to see that baby completed :bigsmile:

MRsDNF
MRsDNF's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 12/22/2011 - 21:18
Posts: 13473
Location: A light beam away from the missus in the land of Aus.

zelee wrote:
can’t wait to see that baby completed :bigsmile:

+1. Lots of creative thinking going on here. Is the led on a copper star?

 

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.

 

ryansoh3
ryansoh3's picture
Offline
Last seen: 10 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: 08/04/2012 - 08:21
Posts: 3890
Location: US

Wow, this is going to be awesome. Smile

BLF ≠ B-grade Flashlight Forum

 

RaceR86
RaceR86's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 9 months ago
Joined: 02/22/2012 - 08:32
Posts: 3777
Location: Norway

LIKE! Smile

MRsDNF, that is a copper star, Noctigon..

BLF LED database – collaboration spreadsheet and latest news about where to buy LEDs
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/19342

MRsDNF
MRsDNF's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 12/22/2011 - 21:18
Posts: 13473
Location: A light beam away from the missus in the land of Aus.

That is my super observant powers at work again. Yes you are 200% correct. Problem is it wont be the last dumb question I ask. Thanks.

 

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.

 

ImA4Wheelr
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/03/2013 - 14:51
Posts: 7935
Location: SC

Thanks guys.  Added a few more pictures so that the end objective is clearer.

ohaya
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 7 months ago
Joined: 03/16/2013 - 19:01
Posts: 5337
Location: US
ImA4Wheelr wrote:

Thanks guys.  Added a few more pictures so that the end objective is clearer.

You could drive a 6V MT-G2 in the DST with this setup?

ImA4Wheelr
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/03/2013 - 14:51
Posts: 7935
Location: SC

Ohaya wrote:

You could drive a 6V MT-G2 in the DST with this setup?

Should work.  I haven't tried 3 cells with MT-G2 yet, but it works fine with 2 cells.  I intend to do this to my MT-G2 DST too.  I have really become attached to that light.  I use it more than all of my other lights now when it comes to outside.

garrybunk
garrybunk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 week 2 days ago
Joined: 10/31/2011 - 09:25
Posts: 6099
Location: Johnstown, PA

Great work!  I like it!

-Garry

My Bike Lights Thread, Optics (TIR) Comparison Beamshots, Diffusion Techniques

, MTBR’s Lights & Night Riding Forum
NOTE: Now hosting my photos from my Google account. Post up if you can’t see them. Older photos hosted on Photobucket or Flickr may disappear (PM me if you want access to them).
dchomak
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 5 months ago
Joined: 03/17/2012 - 20:10
Posts: 4122
Location: Connecticut

And I bought an extra Defiant 5C to do this in the future, Yours will be better!
So many leaves, so little time

JohnnyMac
JohnnyMac's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 weeks 3 hours ago
Joined: 04/12/2011 - 16:03
Posts: 8864
Location: Eastern PA

garrybunk wrote:

Great work!  I like it!

-Garry

+1  Super nice!
panthervision23
Offline
Last seen: 7 years 11 months ago
Joined: 02/19/2013 - 00:37
Posts: 545

You did great! I like the way you solder the parts.

:bigsmile:
ImA4Wheelr
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/03/2013 - 14:51
Posts: 7935
Location: SC

Thanks for the positive comment and encouragement guys. 

I worked on it more tonight, but I ended up blowing 2 emitters.  This driver can really deliver the juice.  I just reflowed a new emitter and dialed back the trim pot a lot, but its late and I need to crash.  Hopefully, it will be at some semi sane level of current next time as this project is starting to go from budget to not so budget now.

ImA4Wheelr
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/03/2013 - 14:51
Posts: 7935
Location: SC

Got it running tonight.  That trim pot is real accurate for dialing in current.  Set it to about 6.75 amps.  I say about because I measured current with the pill out of the light.  There could be resistance in the light that brings in down.  There could have been resistance with the DMM that could have under measured (doubtful though). 

The hot spot is much smaller now.  Measured a 237kcd.   Hopefully, I can improve that.  I will hopefully take some pictures this weekend.

GottaZoom
GottaZoom's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 3 months ago
Joined: 04/12/2012 - 03:14
Posts: 2179
ImA4Wheelr wrote:
Measured a 237kcd.   Hopefully, I can improve that.  I will hopefully take some pictures this weekend.

Wow! Draw measured at the emitter? Sounds like unless that’s already perfectly focused, there could be more …

ImA4Wheelr
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/03/2013 - 14:51
Posts: 7935
Location: SC

Yeah, that is amps at the emitter.  Not sure if it is fully focused or not yet.  Probably not far off. 

I just took it for a walk last night.  It's a light saber with some flood narrow faint spill.  One has to be careful to not continually get dazzled by the concentrated beam/hot spot.  Running it on low is about the only way to walk around with it on.

I will do this mod to my dedomed MT-G2 DST.  Will only have about half the throw, but it will light up a big area.  That is more my type of light for general usage.  It won't run on Ni-mh, etc though.

Edit: Flood was the wrong word above.

RaceR86
RaceR86's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 9 months ago
Joined: 02/22/2012 - 08:32
Posts: 3777
Location: Norway

Nice work!

Will there be some beamshots comparing it with one of your MT-G2 lights in the future?? ^^

What kind of current did you fry the emitters at?

BLF LED database – collaboration spreadsheet and latest news about where to buy LEDs
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/19342

ImA4Wheelr
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/03/2013 - 14:51
Posts: 7935
Location: SC

I'll try.  I still don't have the night time beam shot skill.

I don't know the current the emitters fried at.  Here is what a happened.  I'll admit ahead of time that I was not exercising the due care (from the emitters' perspectives).  I was trying to dial in the trim pot.  Started it at the mid point and got 4.3amps.  That is pretty much the stock current.  Expected that given the trim pot's specs.  Started the process of turning a few turns and then reconnecting cells and testing current.  After many iterations, I became concerned that I had a bad connection or bad trim pot.  So, not wanting to unsolder the trim pot and test it, I decided to just short the trim pot, connect cells for a split second to see if current jumps.  The emitter flashed the moment I connected (2 cells) and then the emitter no longer worked.  No current flowed after the flash and I didn't see the current reading at the time of connection.

The second emitter.  So I knew I had a good connection to the driver, but maybe the trim pot didn't work.  So I turned the trim pot all the way up.  Based on what I read about the lowest resistance the trimpot was capable of, I figured I was going to end up there anyway.  Connected the cells and the same exact thing happened again.  Flash, no longer worked, no current flowed after the flash, and didn't see the reading at the moment of connection.  Probably didn't even register a reading as fast as it happened.

I know, I know.  I knew better.  Was tired and impatient.  I need to not mod when I feel that way.

EDIT:  I will add that this driver is deceptively beastly.  I don't know how far the trim pot is from max, but it is further than I expected.  Looking at the voltage sense resistors, they are physically large.  Don't know the size spec, but they dwarf the typical sense resistor you see on drivers.  I'll add this.  I have a TN31 that I have to fight to get it in 6 amp territory.  This driver gets there easy and is rock solid.  The current doesn't fluctuate.  I need to find a way to make this driver a slave to another MCU.

RaceR86
RaceR86's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 9 months ago
Joined: 02/22/2012 - 08:32
Posts: 3777
Location: Norway

ImA4Wheelr wrote:

EDIT:  I will add that this driver is deceptively beastly.  I don't know how far the trim pot is from max, but it is further than I expected.  Looking at the voltage sense resistors, they are physically large.  Don't know the size spec, but they dwarf the typical sense resistor you see on drivers.  I'll add this.  I have a TN31 that I have to fight to get it in 6 amp territory.  This driver gets there easy and is rock solid.  The current doesn't fluctuate.  I need to find a way to make this driver a slave to another MCU.

Thanks for the info! Smile

BLF LED database – collaboration spreadsheet and latest news about where to buy LEDs
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/19342

ImA4Wheelr
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/03/2013 - 14:51
Posts: 7935
Location: SC

Up to 309kcd.  Fabbed a copper spring (actually a dome) and that really increased the out put.  Guess the half-ass copper tabs were not putting enough pressure on the cells.

Dropping the emitter back has really brought the light near focus.  Right now the top of the reflector centering ring is flush with the inside of the reflector.  Charging up some cells and will work on fine tuning the focus.

GottaZoom
GottaZoom's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 3 months ago
Joined: 04/12/2012 - 03:14
Posts: 2179
ImA4Wheelr wrote:

Up to 309kcd.  Fabbed a copper spring (actually a dome) and that really increased the out put.  Guess the half-ass copper tabs were not putting enough pressure on the cells.

Dropping the emitter back has really brought the light near focus.  Right now the top of the reflector centering ring is flush with the inside of the reflector.  Charging up some cells and will work on fine tuning the focus.

How much did the draw change?

Sleeper! Amazing that this light could look so inexpensive and produce amazing results.

Flomotion
Flomotion's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 months 1 week ago
Joined: 12/02/2012 - 15:13
Posts: 1405
Location: Pacific Northwest

Could you give us a close-up of where you connected the pot, and a link to the exact pot please?

Flomotion

nottawhackjob
Offline
Last seen: 3 hours 6 min ago
Joined: 01/07/2013 - 14:13
Posts: 1336

I guess what does looking so inexpensive have to do with flat-out raw size, big amps, and skilled determination ? Big Smile

You could take a .99 cent store flashlight with these same basic dimensions and turn it into one relative blasting beast if one were so determined.

Never necessarily judge any light’s potential just by the look of its tube. :bigsmile:

This light has always had the bones even at $22.98 much less $12. One just had to recognize what it already had compared to others way more expensive that didn’t have it.

“In many things in order to truly understand the small picture you have to understand the big picture first.”

True Color Rendition (TCR)/Simplified Definition: “On a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest rating, a TCR will equate to what true colors you see in sunlight vs the same object’s colors you see when illuminated with a flashlight. The closer the two are, the higher the TCR rating will be.”

The TCR Reference Standard is the Walmart Ozark Trail OT 50L , Model No. 6103.
It has a TCR rating of ‘10’. $1.00 including batteries.

ImA4Wheelr
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/03/2013 - 14:51
Posts: 7935
Location: SC

GottaZoom wrote:

How much did the draw change? . . .

 

Unfortunately, I don't know the answer to your question.  I have to remove the tail cap to measure draw.  So that takes the copper dome spring out of the equation.  Out of the light, with good connections, the emitter was getting 6.75 amps.  At the tail, current settles down to the following readings:

High  2.83 amps

Med   1.23 amps

Low     .29 amps

To complicate matters, I also turned up the trim pot 1/2 turn.  So I should be getting more than 6.75 amps to the emitter.  I need to center the emitter base.  I will remeasure everything then and report back.  Do you think I should up the current to the emitter to 7.5 amps while I'm at it?  I'm quite tempted to.

ImA4Wheelr
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/03/2013 - 14:51
Posts: 7935
Location: SC

Flomotion wrote:

Could you give us a close-up of where you connected the pot, and a link to the exact pot please?

 

This is the trim pot.  Most of it's range is not used because it goes up to 10 ohms.   I only have the above pictures for now.  Next time I take apart the pill, I will try to remember to move the inductor out of the way and snap a picture.  Legs 1 and 2 are soldered to the red wire.  Leg 3 is connected to the black wire.  Polarity does not matter.  The 2 wires run over the top of the vertical pcb and connect to each side of the voltage sense resistor bank.  If you magnify the below photo, you can see the wires soldered on each side of resistor R200.

ImA4Wheelr
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/03/2013 - 14:51
Posts: 7935
Location: SC

nottawhackjob wrote:

This light has always had the bones even at $22.98 much less $12. One just had to recognize what it already had compared to others way more expensive that didn’t have it.

 

I agree.  I told someone else that with this light you are buying potential.  I wish I had a lathe like MRsDNF.  He has replaced the weak points of the light and turned it into a proper beast.  Actually, if I had a lathe, I would still lack his amazing skill.  Well, one needs to have dreams and folks to look up to.  So at least I got that.

nottawhackjob
Offline
Last seen: 3 hours 6 min ago
Joined: 01/07/2013 - 14:13
Posts: 1336

I don’t think your imaginative creativity will run out either. Look at what O-L creates with just a drill press.

Where there’s a will there’s a way. Finding someone that has a lathe that shares your passion isn’t close to impossible especially if you turn them on to that passion as well. Then you both benefit equally.

“In many things in order to truly understand the small picture you have to understand the big picture first.”

True Color Rendition (TCR)/Simplified Definition: “On a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest rating, a TCR will equate to what true colors you see in sunlight vs the same object’s colors you see when illuminated with a flashlight. The closer the two are, the higher the TCR rating will be.”

The TCR Reference Standard is the Walmart Ozark Trail OT 50L , Model No. 6103.
It has a TCR rating of ‘10’. $1.00 including batteries.

ImA4Wheelr
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/03/2013 - 14:51
Posts: 7935
Location: SC

Thank you Notta.  Great idea on finding someone local with a lathe.

MRsDNF
MRsDNF's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 12/22/2011 - 21:18
Posts: 13473
Location: A light beam away from the missus in the land of Aus.

nottawhackjob wrote:
I don’t think your imaginative creativity will run out either. Look at what O-L creates with just a drill press.
Where there’s a will there’s a way. Finding someone that has a lathe that shares your passion isn’t close to impossible especially if you turn them on to that passion as well. Then you both benefit equally.

Well said. There is a lot of amazing people here that have very diverse abilities.

 

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.

 

GottaZoom
GottaZoom's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 3 months ago
Joined: 04/12/2012 - 03:14
Posts: 2179
nottawhackjob wrote:
I guess what does looking so inexpensive have to do with flat-out raw size, big amps, and skilled determination ? Big Smile

I see the smiley, so I hope that means you know what a sleeper refers to in street racing …

Pages