FW3A, a TLF/BLF EDC flashlight - SST-20 available, coupon codes public

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raccoon city
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Personally, I think the bat is ugly, but another animal or design could be impressive.  :THUMBS-UP:

teacher
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@ tatasal … That looks amazing!! Fantastic workmanship…. Beer

You never know how a horse will pull until you hook him up to a heavy load./"Bear" Bryant 

 .................................. "Slow is Smooth, Smooth is Fast" ...................................

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tatasal
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teacher wrote:
@ tatasal … That looks amazing!! Fantastic workmanship…. Beer

Yeah, it’s fantastic…it’s done by some flashaholic in China..no other word if there would be some available for the rest of us yet.

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Thumbs Up

You never know how a horse will pull until you hook him up to a heavy load./"Bear" Bryant 

 .................................. "Slow is Smooth, Smooth is Fast" ...................................

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JasonWW
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DBSAR wrote:
HOLY CRAP.. Another favorite light got hot after shorting and smells of burned plastic right out of the blue.. I had a scary incident last month with the Imalent DX80 nearly exploding in my hands, and now this FW3A emitted burning smell and stopped working after just falling off a 20 inch high night table..



The fall might have shorted the inner tube making the driver think the button was pressed down continuously.

The tail pcb looks interesting. I’m not sure why it looks burnt, though. That would be due to high current flowing through that trace.

Here is a theory. The fall might have made the battery push hard against the inner tube. The inner tube might have shorted against the outer tube. In this situation the battery current might be forced to flow through that burnt looking switch trace to power the light PLUS the current flowing through the inner tube also triggers the driver to think the switch is being constantly pressed down.

Toykeeper has seen the results of a shorted inner tube. Hopefully she can comment. I can’t remember her description well enough.

Inspect the inner tube for any breaks in the anodized finish (outer part of inner tube).

Edit: Toykeeper said that if the inner tube gets shorted, the light acts like the button is pressed.

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DBSAR
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JasonWW wrote:
DBSAR wrote:
HOLY CRAP.. Another favorite light got hot after shorting and smells of burned plastic right out of the blue.. I had a scary incident last month with the Imalent DX80 nearly exploding in my hands, and now this FW3A emitted burning smell and stopped working after just falling off a 20 inch high night table..



It doesn’t seem to be a problem in the head area. I would check the tail and especially the inner tube. The fall might have shorted the inner tube making the driver think the button was pressed down continuously.

The tail pcb looks interesting. I’m not sure why it looks burnt, though. That would be due to high current flowing through that trace.

Here is a theory. The fall might have made the battery push hard against the inner tube. The inner tube might have shorted against the outer tube. In this situation the battery current might be forced to flow through that burnt looking switch trace to power the light PLUS the current flowing through the inner tube also triggers the driver to think the switch is being constantly pressed down.

Toykeeper has seen the results of a shorted inner tube. Hopefully she can comment. I can’t remember her description well enough.

Inspect the inner tube for any breaks in the anodized finish (outer part of inner tube).

ok after closer inspection, there is no doubt the small trace had melted to the tail spring, why it happened after a small fall off the night table possibly landing on the tail to cause the short to the trace with the spring.I did check the inner tube, but dont see any scratches or flaws to allow it to short to the body.

( as i mentioned here in the FW3A troubleshooting thread, i will do a quick mod/fix to prevent the spring from shorting to that trace. http://budgetlightforum.com/comment/1524862#comment-1524862

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

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I was about to order one of these… but I’ve dropped my zebralight HUNDREDS of times and never had an issue.

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JoeRodge wrote:
I was about to order one of these… but I’ve dropped my zebralight HUNDREDS of times and never had an issue.

Are you scared? Big Smile

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JoeRodge wrote:
I was about to order one of these… but I’ve dropped my zebralight HUNDREDS of times and never had an issue.

Did you loose the feeling in your hands? I am starting too, I hope it don’t get that bad… Facepalm

KB1428 “Live Life WOT

JoeRodge
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My wife runs around the house slightly unscrewing all of my tail caps. 2 years ago today(not joking) my zebralight(sc600w iv plus) caught my cotton shorts pocket on fire.

I’m more worried about her finding out that my new light caught the bed sheets on fire

Kawi: I use my flashlight a lot and in hard to reach places. I use it a few hours a day. I’m also clumsy and drop it off my lap at least twice a week. But my hands are getting destroyed from doing repairs on small devices

contactcr
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Kawi’s hands are now made up of more metal shavings than tissue

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I believe that Japanese/Chinese hands are smaller, better able to reach inside their miniature engineered wonders.
One reason I had my sinus surgery by a Japanese doctor and my proctologist is Dr No.

nobody
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This is very concerning. I just checked my spring. The end of the spring is about the 2 o’clock position from the FW3A stamp. The largest gap is about 11 o’clock. I can just barely get a sheet of paper thru the spring at the trace.  All three solder pads appear soldered ok. I’ve never soldered before. Do you think it is OK? I have had zilch problems with the light. I have never dropped it though. I do use FT batteries. 

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nobody wrote:

This is very concerning. I just checked my spring. The end of the spring is about the 2 o’clock position from the FW3A stamp. The largest gap is about 11 o’clock. I can just barely get a sheet of paper thru the spring at the trace.  All three solder pads appear soldered ok. I’ve never soldered before. Do you think it is OK? I have had zilch problems with the light. I have never dropped it though. I do use FT batteries. 


I would not be concerned. There doesn’t seem a chance the spring could touch the trace. You have a nice gap and the spring is properly soldered.

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dragunbayne
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Seems a piece of kapton tape over that trace would have been cheap insurance. I may desolder my spring and do just that when mine comes in. I like my lights to be as bulletproof as possible. My Olight S1 has been through a lot and refuses to stop working.

kat
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Is the head of this light easily replaceable?
Like, if I want a different led, can I just swap the head content, or do I need to unglue and solder stuff?

WalkIntoTheLight
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Mine had the sharp end of the spring right over the trace. Almost touching. Facepalm

The solder job on mine was really bad, too. Just one contact point, and the spring was way off center.

I desoldered it, and did an equally sh*tty solder job putting it back together. But, at least it’s centered, the sharp end is 180 degrees away from the trace, and there’s two contact points (couldn’t get the third for some reason). I also added some more solder so the spring sits up higher. There’s a good millimeter of space between the spring and the board.

I hope I did that correctly. Anyway, the light works fine, and the spring seems solidly in place.

This design flaw is not cool.

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Firelight2 wrote:
id30209 wrote:
Thx from my side as well!
Every day you learn something new

EDIT: but i need to agree with Doug also, my custom brass torch is getting warmer than alu torch with the same Cu light engine. Maker confirmed it has high quantity of copper so it would be ok to check with Lumintop about the brass they are about to release…


There are multiple factors involved:
  • Thermal Conductivity – how fast heat conducts through the material – a copper light with high thermal conductivity will probably heat up over the entire light. While a titanium light with low thermal conductivity will heat up mostly at the head, with the body and tailcap remaining relatively cool. The head might end up quite a bit hotter than the head in an all copper light, because the heat isn’t able to get out of the head quickly.

  • Thermal Capacity – how much heat energy the material can store. My understanding is that copper holds more heat than aluminum by volume, but aluminum is much lighter and can hold more heat more by mass.
  • Emissivity – this how fast heat is able to exit the material by being radiated away. In general higher emissivity is best. Dark anodized aluminum has good emissivity. Polished metal tends to have less.

The most practical setup for a flashlight is probably a pure copper pill combined with dark anodized aluminum body. This gives you maximum thermal conductivity right at the point of heat generation (the LED), while maintaining good emissivity and overall light weight (all copper lights are very heavy which is not very practical. Plus if they heat up too uniformly you may need gloves to hold the light).

Great combined info!

My favorite combo for weight vs ability to handle heat – Aluminum outside and copper inside. I’ll do a copper light very infrequently. I NEVER do brass, bronze or stainless steel. Titanium is rare for me, but has been purchased a few times.

teacher
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kat wrote:
Is the head of this light easily replaceable?
Like, if I want a different led, can I just swap the head content, or do I need to unglue and solder stuff?
It does not have a pill if that is what you are asking. If you want different emitters you will have to take the MCPCB out & either reflow new ones or install another MCPCB with different emitters.

As far as the head being “easily replaceable” …. yeah, you can just screw one off and screw another one on.

You never know how a horse will pull until you hook him up to a heavy load./"Bear" Bryant 

 .................................. "Slow is Smooth, Smooth is Fast" ...................................

       Texas Lumens Flashlights / M4D M4X Deals : sign up - save $$$$  

         Rudeness Level _ mΩ _ {width:70%} _ LightWiki _ LED Tint Chart  

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contactcr wrote:
Kawi’s hands are now made up of more metal shavings than tissue

!https://qph.fs.quoracdn.net/main-qimg-1df3d41da404d91832247a03e7186aaf-c!

Kawi plays grand piano in a marching band

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RobertB wrote:
Kawi plays grand piano in a marching band

https://www.kawai-global.com/product/cr-40a/
teacher
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treellama wrote:
RobertB wrote:
Kawi plays grand piano in a marching band

https://www.kawai-global.com/product/cr-40a/

Nice… Thumbs Up

You never know how a horse will pull until you hook him up to a heavy load./"Bear" Bryant 

 .................................. "Slow is Smooth, Smooth is Fast" ...................................

       Texas Lumens Flashlights / M4D M4X Deals : sign up - save $$$$  

         Rudeness Level _ mΩ _ {width:70%} _ LightWiki _ LED Tint Chart  

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Klayking
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Cute piano.

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Just an update for this thread. I tested to see what happens if the spring shorts to that trace in the tail cap. Nothing big happened. All is fine, so there’s no worry about that specific scenario. Details are HERE and a couple posts below that.

Something else caused the malfunction is DBSAR’S light when it fell.

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Could it be that there was a blob of solder etc, that somehow affected the light and melted away / loosened when it shorted?

JasonWW
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A blob of solder could be the cause of a short if it touched both a positive point on the driver and a ground point at the same time. I doubt it would melt, though. They tend to blob up when heated like surface tension does a water droplet.

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There was a small blob of solder on the oval trace on my switch board. I took it away with a pincer, it loosened very easily. A little bit bigger blob there could possibly touch the batteries negative pole.

JasonWW
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RapidLux wrote:
There was a small blob of solder on the oval trace on my switch board. I took it away with a pincer, it loosened very easily. A little bit bigger blob there could possibly touch the batteries negative pole.

All that would happen is it would simulate the button being pressed like in my test.

Same thing if the inner tube gets shorted, it simulates a button press.

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Nev
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JasonWW wrote:
A blob of solder could be the cause of a short if it touched both a positive point on the driver and a ground point at the same time. I doubt it would melt, though. They tend to blob up when heated like surface tension does a water droplet.

Mine melted the solder on the black wire & disconnected itself.
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I received my SST-20 light yesterday (which was a nice surprise because the tracking never worked no matter which tracking site I used). I am glad that I got one because the tint is great. Like others mentioned, I don’t see a green tint at all, no matter what level it is on. It’s as warm as I’d like and the colors really pop. Well done.

Mine had no issues. No loose retaining ring, tight tail cap, worked right out of the box with a GA cell I have.

There are a few differences though that some others have mentioned. Brass (?) retaining ring, shiny silver clip, shorter and lighter travel in the switch button and the anodizing is slightly more blue than the HI one I got a while ago. Nothing to be concerned about, except for the switch which seem to be easier to turn on. I’ll keep it locked out or in an Astrolux holster I’ve got. It’s low-profile and a lot less bulky than the Convoy ones I have.

I chose to have Neal send me the light with the new optic and the lens. I swapped the optic for a floody one I’ve got (can’t remember the number but it’s more frosted than the one I received on my HI FW3A). It looks great and I’ll get a lot of use out of it around the house and at work.

I must say that I thought the new optic was going to be junk but it really isn’t. The beam looks good and the material is better than what I envisioned. I thought it was going to be some lousy milk-carton soft plastic, but it’s actually pretty nice. I can see why they went their own way if Lumintop couldn’t find the original optics in sufficient numbers or having to wait for them and keep customers waiting.

Overall, I am very glad I’ve got my two different models. Each will be used a lot. I doubt I’ll get another. No need for alternative materials for me and the colors are cool but not necessary, although I really did like that olive/sand one…

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