D.I.Y. Illuminated tailcap

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lumenzilla
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Thanks djozz, I have made it glow.
Just need to tweak the R size to get my desire brightness.

pilotdog68
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lumenzilla wrote:
I want to try this little hack on Manker E14, I see that it’s already using custom board for the switch.

I have soldered 2 SMD (with code 103 and 104) resistors and 2 nichia LED as following, but it still doesn’t work. Do I need to add another resistor on the driver as well?
Please advise.

Are you using that green tailcap in the picture? My thought is that they might be turning on in the flashlight, but so faintly that it can’t be seen through the green. Adding the bleeder to the driver might help.

I’m not up on my resistor codes. What are those values on the tailcap? (103 and 104)

edit: just saw your new post. glad it is working. It definitely takes a lot of playing with values, with is why some started using pots

My Favorite Modded Lights: X6R, S8 , X2R , M6, SP03

Major Projects:  Illuminated Tailcap, TripleDown/TripleStack Driver

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Texas_Ace wrote:
I have wanted to try this for some time, I love it on the X5. The issue is reading all 1140 posts to see where exactly things stand.

Is the OP updated with the latest developments?

Also which boards should I order, there are so many options and it doesn’t make a lot of sense as to which one you should actually order without the background on why there are so many.

I basically want the most universal setup that can be used in the widest possible number of lights and be reliable. It also still need to offer high current carrying capability to the switch.

Pots are nice but not a must.

I would be using it in S2 tube lights mostly and other lights with similar sized tailcaps.


The OP is mostly updated, there are links for each board that go to their more detailed descriptions in this thread.
———————————
For one design that can cover a lot of functionality, I recommend either Rev5.1 or Rev5.2 (get the default Oshpark option). These will work with stock switch pcb’s

If you pair it with either Rev5a or pyro1son’s board (Usually the 2oz board will be better for this one) you can adjust it without opening the tailcap.

———————————-

you may be interested in this as well

My Favorite Modded Lights: X6R, S8 , X2R , M6, SP03

Major Projects:  Illuminated Tailcap, TripleDown/TripleStack Driver

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pilotdog68 wrote:
Texas_Ace wrote:
I have wanted to try this for some time, I love it on the X5. The issue is reading all 1140 posts to see where exactly things stand.

Is the OP updated with the latest developments?

Also which boards should I order, there are so many options and it doesn’t make a lot of sense as to which one you should actually order without the background on why there are so many.

I basically want the most universal setup that can be used in the widest possible number of lights and be reliable. It also still need to offer high current carrying capability to the switch.

Pots are nice but not a must.

I would be using it in S2 tube lights mostly and other lights with similar sized tailcaps.


The OP is mostly updated, there are links for each board that go to their more detailed descriptions in this thread.

For one design that can cover a lot of functionality, I recommend

Either Rev5.1 or Rev5.2

paired wth

Either Rev5a or pyro1son’s board

you may be interested in this as well

And it’s nice that the led rings can be used with most stock switch pcbs

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Ok, I think I figured out what was throwing me off.

You need 2 different boards, the first is the tailswitch board like normal except with resistors/pots and outputs.

You then use a second board that holds the LED’s and it mounts in place of the washer that is normally on top of the switch?

How does the switch boot seal/not damage the LED’s?

The pictures do not show the 2 boards, they just show a single board and a clear washer. The oshpark pics didn’t make it clear there was a hole in the center either, this was what was causing the confusion for me.

Does anyone have a picture of the completed setup for the stacked board design?

Also besides letting more light through to the tailcap, does the stacked design offer anything else over the single board setup? I could make washer out of acrylic easily so light loss would not be a big deal.

I already have a few of those high amp tail switch boards, I use them in the triples and such, I was hoping the lighted boards incorporated a similar design, which they appear to do.

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Texas_Ace wrote:
Ok, I think I figured out what was throwing me off.

You need 2 different boards, the first is the tailswitch board like normal except with resistors/pots and outputs.

You then use a second board that holds the LED’s and it mounts in place of the washer that is normally on top of the switch?

How does the switch boot seal/not damage the LED’s?

The pictures do not show the 2 boards, they just show a single board and a clear washer. The oshpark pics didn’t make it clear there was a hole in the center either, this was what was causing the confusion for me.

Does anyone have a picture of the completed setup for the stacked board design?

Also besides letting more light through to the tailcap, does the stacked design offer anything else over the single board setup? I could make washer out of acrylic easily so light loss would not be a big deal.

I already have a few of those high amp tail switch boards, I use them in the triples and such, I was hoping the lighted boards incorporated a similar design, which they appear to do.


I re-edited my post for more clarity. The ring/washer shaped pcb’s were designed using measurements of the common rubber boot sizes so the led’s themselves shouldn’t even be getting contacted during operation. Likewise the pads on the bottom are spaced for the small omten 1288 to have clearance. You may have issues with other (larger) switches.

You can also use the rings by mounting resistors right on them, and keeping the stock switch pcb (or the “high amp” one).

Even using crystal-clear acrylic, the rings let out way more light, meaning you can turn the power down and get tiny tiny power draw measurements. You also get more well-spaced even light. They all have pads for 6 led’s, but I usually only use 3. Here’s one picture

My Favorite Modded Lights: X6R, S8 , X2R , M6, SP03

Major Projects:  Illuminated Tailcap, TripleDown/TripleStack Driver

pilotdog68
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For instance, in my next build, I am going to use Rev5.1 to hold different colors of led’s, and use the onboard resistor pads to balance those different colors if their Vf are different from each other.

Then I will pair it with Rev5a and two pots, so I can easily make the switch brighter or dimmer with a flip of a switch

My Favorite Modded Lights: X6R, S8 , X2R , M6, SP03

Major Projects:  Illuminated Tailcap, TripleDown/TripleStack Driver

lumenzilla
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pilotdog68 wrote:

Are you using that green tailcap in the picture? My thought is that they might be turning on in the flashlight, but so faintly that it can’t be seen through the green. Adding the bleeder to the driver might help.

I’m not up on my resistor codes. What are those values on the tailcap? (103 and 104)

Yes, I’m using that rubber cap. I found that the LED is lit after I removed the rubber cap and I see the faint glowing LED Big Smile

About the resistors, they’re scrapped from any discarded PCBs so the value is quite vary and hard to get desired ones. Now I’m purchasing new SMDs from local online stores.

One more question, the smaller the value, the LED will be brighter or dimmer?

Thanks!

pilotdog68
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Less resistance = more power flowing = brighter LED

Too much power flowing can mess up your driver function though, so be mindful of that

My Favorite Modded Lights: X6R, S8 , X2R , M6, SP03

Major Projects:  Illuminated Tailcap, TripleDown/TripleStack Driver

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pilotdog68 wrote:
I re-edited my post for more clarity. The ring/washer shaped pcb’s were designed using measurements of the common rubber boot sizes so the led’s themselves shouldn’t even be getting contacted during operation. Likewise the pads on the bottom are spaced for the small omten 1288 to have clearance. You may have issues with other (larger) switches.

You can also use the rings by mounting resistors right on them, and keeping the stock switch pcb (or the “high amp” one).

Even using crystal-clear acrylic, the rings let out way more light, meaning you can turn the power down and get tiny tiny power draw measurements. You also get more well-spaced even light. They all have pads for 6 led’s, but I usually only use 3. Here’s one picture

Ok, that makes way more sense. You might want to add that picture to the OP, a picture is worth a thousand words as they say.

IIRC the stock switches in the S2 are the small 1288 correct? I have a bunch of those laying around so hopefully they will work.

lumenzilla
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pilotdog68 wrote:
Less resistance = more power flowing = brighter LED

Too much power flowing can mess up your driver function though, so be mindful of that


Many thanks!
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Texas_Ace wrote:
Ok, that makes way more sense. You might want to add that picture to the OP, a picture is worth a thousand words as they say.

IIRC the stock switches in the S2 are the small 1288 correct? I have a bunch of those laying around so hopefully they will work.


I yeah I should add it or another one. I’m due to go and make sure all the links are still active too.

If you get Rev5a, don’t forget to order some of the little slide switches too.

Yes, the S2 uses the 1288.

My Favorite Modded Lights: X6R, S8 , X2R , M6, SP03

Major Projects:  Illuminated Tailcap, TripleDown/TripleStack Driver

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Ok, think I am about ready to order some of these. Think I am going to go with pyro1son switch as I can’t find the right slide switched on digikey for cheap (making an order anyways) plus if I want to turn it off I will just lockout the tailcap I think.

Or do you know of the right switch from digikey? Might grab a set of the 5.1a as well.

My only real question now is what components should I grab while making a digikey order anyways? I already have some 470, 560, 680ohm resistors in the cart for the bleeder. Any other sizes I should add for the LED’s themselves?

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Texas_Ace wrote:
Ok, think I am about ready to order some of these. Think I am going to go with pyro1son switch as I can’t find the right slide switched on digikey for cheap (making an order anyways) plus if I want to turn it off I will just lockout the tailcap I think.

Or do you know of the right switch from digikey? Might grab a set of the 5.1a as well.

My only real question now is what components should I grab while making a digikey order anyways? I already have some 470, 560, 680ohm resistors in the cart for the bleeder. Any other sizes I should add for the LED’s themselves?


I have no idea on digikey, but here are some on ebay shipped from the US. They’ll probably get to you long before the oshpark boards.

It’s up to your preference anyways. I can understand having access to the pot from the bottom, but I prefer having “presets” of levels I can just jump between with the switch.

We started using pots because it can be annoying to be swapping resistors trying to find the right balance. For pots get either 50k or 100k. For LED resistors it could be anywhere from 2k-50k based on how bright you want them to be and how your leds behave under low power.

My Favorite Modded Lights: X6R, S8 , X2R , M6, SP03

Major Projects:  Illuminated Tailcap, TripleDown/TripleStack Driver

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Ok, got the boards ordered, I look forward to playing with them.

Very simple and good idea PD now that I see how it is all working together.

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Texas_Ace wrote:
I basically want the most universal setup that can be used in the widest possible number of lights and be reliable.

Unfortunately it’s still a slightly custom process thanks to the differences in machining between lights. To give examples, I needed to use the thin 0.8mm boards on top and bottom for an S2+ with metal switch cap, but needed to use a thin bottom board and thick (1.6mm) top board for my Astrolux S41 with rubber switch cap. Otherwise the switch itself was too far back (pressed against the rubber) and it didn’t have enough travel to reset.

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Yeah, I am used to modding, not scared of some custom work.

After years of this type of thing I have learned to buy the most universal parts ahead of time since you never know what you might want to use them in.

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Hi pilotdog68, could you give me an advice, which one of this boards (with 2 leds) is easiest to build with parts available from OSH and ebay, for use on nanjg 105 and A17-DD and BLF X6 drivers

Thanks Thumbs Up

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Hunter wrote:
Hi pilotdog68, could you give me an advice, which one of this boards (with 2 leds) is easiest to build with parts available from OSH and ebay, for use on nanjg 105 and A17-DD and BLF X6 drivers

Thanks Thumbs Up


are you saying you want a version that only uses 2 leds? most of the better versions you’ll need at least 3 to have a balanced look.

My Favorite Modded Lights: X6R, S8 , X2R , M6, SP03

Major Projects:  Illuminated Tailcap, TripleDown/TripleStack Driver

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So it looks like it’s time to update the OP with new pictures and fix broken links.

If someone is building one soon, or already has pictures, or is willing to take apart a light:

I need some pictures of how the newer versions are constructed.

I’m looking for high-quality macro shots of the top of the board, how it’s stacked, etc. Basically an updated version of what are now the bottom four pictures in the OP. I would take some myself, but I only have a cellphone camera to work with. I’ll do that if I must, but I know we have some better cameras (and lighting) among us.

Also, if you have other suggestions on how to better organize this huge amount of info, please let me know.

My Favorite Modded Lights: X6R, S8 , X2R , M6, SP03

Major Projects:  Illuminated Tailcap, TripleDown/TripleStack Driver

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Here in my Eagle Eye triple build you can find my photos of the tailcap build too. Not all the best shot because I used phone too but I hope you can use some of them:
EE X6 triple build and lighted tailcap build.

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This is super nice, I didn’t see this version before Big Smile

any instructions how to make that switch, which board to order!

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Hunter wrote:
This is super nice, I didn’t see this version before Big Smile

any instructions how to make that switch, which board to order!


Hi I made this to my Eagle Eye X6. It has BLF A17DD driver. I used 470 Ohm bleeder resistor on driver side and 47 KOhm resistors on the ring led PCB’s bottom side for each pair of leds. And some blue 0805 leds from ebay. The PCB is this 5.1 version
Here you can see the place for the 3 resistors at the bottom:

The led board’s negative contact is wired to the switch leg which goes to directly to the battery spring:

The positive goes to the other leg of the switch.

The spring bypass is not necessary if you don’t make a high current setup as a triple led light and you can use your original switch board with spring and switch. Just leave the washer out from the top of the switch because the led ring board function as the washer too. And also replace the swicch boot with a translucent one. This board is good for 14mm diameter switch boots.

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Thanks for the info ZozzV6, I just ordered 6 × 17mm High-Amp Switch PCB copy and 6 x PD68 Illuminated Switch – 16mm Rev5.1 copy, alredy have some tiny leds and SMD resistors as well as A17-DD drivers.
Now I wait Big Smile

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For pictures these may be ok as well? This is the last one I built, for an S2+:


I tend now to make the connection bewtween ring and switch-board short and stiff (filling the entire wires with solder), I fix the ring well in place like this so nothing will mangle when the assembly is screwed in place.

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djozz wrote:
I tend now to make the connection bewtween ring and switch-board short and stiff (filling the entire wires with solder), I fix the ring well in place like this so nothing will mangle when the assembly is screwed in place.

I have had issues with this as well. I solved it by super gluing the ring to the top flat parts of the switch (after I was done soldering it) I’m considering making those vias big enough for 0.025” header pins now that I’m using them on the TripleStack

My Favorite Modded Lights: X6R, S8 , X2R , M6, SP03

Major Projects:  Illuminated Tailcap, TripleDown/TripleStack Driver

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I got these tailswitches, after paying extra and some delay and confusion (and a wonderful firm explanation by OL in the seller forum about what belongs in a host)
I’d like to make this into an amber, rather than blue, emitter — if I can solder this small stuff.

Can’t promise anyone else that they’ll be able to get switches with the hosts described in this thread

lumenzilla
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djozz wrote:
For pictures these may be ok as well? This is the last one I built, for an S2+: I tend now to make the connection bewtween ring and switch-board short and stiff (filling the entire wires with solder), I fix the ring well in place like this so nothing will mangle when the assembly is screwed in place.

Sweet, the board functioned as washer as well Thumbs Up

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Hey djozz, remind me where you get all these interesting colors?

My Favorite Modded Lights: X6R, S8 , X2R , M6, SP03

Major Projects:  Illuminated Tailcap, TripleDown/TripleStack Driver

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hank wrote:
I’d like to make this into an amber, rather than blue, emitter — if I can solder this small stuff.


What you have there is Manker’s version of the PCB, but functionally I think its identical to my Rev3 boards. You will need to find some 0805 LED’s, you will need an 0805 resistor somewhere around 500ohms for the driver, and between 1-20kohms for the tail. I recommend getting multiple values in that range so you can play with it to find a brightness you like. These are common parts, you can check the OP for links or just do an ebay search.

Or… after all your work to get one of these tailcap boards, you could toss it and order one of the newer, better pcb’s from Oshpark Big Smile

My Favorite Modded Lights: X6R, S8 , X2R , M6, SP03

Major Projects:  Illuminated Tailcap, TripleDown/TripleStack Driver

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