Nitecore EA11 dead after a drop (now alive again)

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tatasal
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Nitecore EA11 dead after a drop (now alive again)

One of the lights I edc is my NC EA11. A couple of days ago I dropped it to a concrete floor. While it still worked immediately after I tested it, a few hours later nothing can make it work.

I know it’s not the tailcap nor cell as I have another NIB EA11 and tested the old tailcap.

What could perhaps be the problem?

Edited by: tatasal on 12/13/2017 - 06:44
Streamer
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Most likely damaged driver connection. Also check battery spring in bottom of tube for proper contact.

tatasal
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Streamer wrote:
Most likely damaged driver connection. Also check battery spring in bottom of tube for proper contact.

The tailcap with the spring works in my other, NIB EA11, so most likely what you said : damaged driver connection, but how to go about it from a non-modder’s point of view?

Streamer
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The side switch in itself could also be suspect. I just unscrewed the head on mine to have a look. If you can’t find something that was just simply overlooked, dis-assembly of the head may be only option.

I was able to test the switch with a battery holder. Touch positive to center postitive in head and negative to outer ring. You must depress and hold the switch in the ON position to confirm this. This will eliminate and reveal possible contact problems in the battery and tube area.

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The above procedure is just eliminating the battery contacts and tube. If your unit does not light up, the driver or led is probably suspect.

tatasal
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Streamer wrote:
The side switch in itself could also be suspect. I just unscrewed the head on mine to have a look. If you can’t find something that was just simply overlooked, dis-assembly of the head may be only option.

I was able to test the switch with a battery holder. Touch positive to center postitive in head and negative to outer ring. You must depress and hold the switch in the ON position to confirm this. This will eliminate contact problems in the battery and tube area.

I don’t have the light with me now… does this mean to unscrew the tube from the head?

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Yeh, the head unscrews easily

tatasal
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Streamer wrote:
Yeh, the head unscrews easily

So this means that after unscrewing the tube with only head left, a cell with wires coming from the + and – ends be connected to the center and thread area while someone is pressing the switch?

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To the driver’s center (+) and gold colored ring (-) on edge of driver. The threads are anodized and non conductive.

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When you have your light, and the head unscrewed, look first at the driver to make sure driver is sitting level and not damaged. If it is not level, it could prevent the battery tube’s negative end from making proper contact with the driver’s negative contact ring.

dropping on concrete sux Sad

tatasal
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Streamer wrote:
When you have your light, and the head unscrewed, look first at the driver to make sure driver is sitting level and not damaged. If it is not level, it could prevent the battery tube’s negative end from making proper contact with the driver’s negative contact ring.

dropping on concrete sux Sad

Ok, will check it out later..I will even compare it visually with the other, working EA11.

tatasal
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I have not yet tested Streamer’s suggestion, but photo below shows the non-working head at the left. On the not-malfunctioning right EA11 head, there is that white blob on the 12 o clock position, near the edge of the outer, negative ring.

Does it have something to do with the problem?

tatasal
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Streamer wrote:
Touch positive to center postitive in head and negative to outer ring. You must depress and hold the switch in the ON position to confirm this. This will eliminate contact problems in the battery and tube area.

I just tried this and the light worked.

Haha, now the next question is obvious….what to do?

Is that white blob in the pic above a factor in the problem?

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I can not tell from pic of the head on left, but is the positive contact on driver flattened slightly or squashed? Has the driver been pushed lower in the head?
This would account for contact problem and light not working,

Remember, the end of battery tube must contact negative ring on driver. So,I think your driver MAY be pushed down slightly not allowing end of tube to make good contact with negative ring.

The head seems to be OK from your battery holder test. Thumbs Up

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Not sure if its here the case, but on some lights reversing the battery tube leads to contact problems as both threads have not same length

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Not on this light. Threads are different on both ends.

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tatasal, in the pic below the ?, is that a lump of solder just to the right of positive contact? That does not belong there.

EA411!
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Sometimes inductors are not glued very well and come off, breaking their wires.

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tatasal
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Streamer wrote:

tatasal, in the pic below the ?, is that a lump of solder just to the right of positive contact? That does not belong there.

EA411!

I wonder why it’s there in my photo, but re-checking it again now there’s no lump of solder…perhaps it was just a reflection or something created by the camera phone.

tatasal
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So now that a test was performed as suggested by Streamer and the light worked, does it mean that the driver and switch are still good but only a ground problem?

Perhaps the light fell head first, jarring the pcb and moved it forward, out of reach of the tube now?

If so, what then is the next move? My non-modder’s mind tells me to put a conductive spacer between the tube and the (-) negative ring… is this a workable and safe idea?

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I’m sure head and switch are fine. Thumbs Up

Yes. Make a circle of appropriately sized wire to fit over the drivers negative ring so tube can make contact. But be very careful as to avoid a short. Shocked

HINT: Sometimes a key-ring of right diameter will fit perfectly over negative ring Grad

tatasal
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Streamer wrote:
I’m sure head and switch are fine. Thumbs Up

Yes. Make a circle of appropriately sized wire to fit over the drivers negative ring so tube can make contact. But be very careful as to avoid a short. Shocked

HINT: Sometimes a key-ring of right diameter will fit perfectly over negative ring Grad

Got it.
I have some small brass shim sheets to make a ring, though I cannot find it now… perhaps this will be enough to make contact.

Edit: I tried a loop of soldering lead and it worked!

Now my next question is: If I fabricate a brass shim instead of the soldering lead, will it not be dangerous for the shim if it ‘bites’ into the anodized, threaded part of the head?

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tatasal wrote:
Streamer wrote:
I’m sure head and switch are fine. Thumbs Up

Yes. Make a circle of appropriately sized wire to fit over the drivers negative ring so tube can make contact. But be very careful as to avoid a short. Shocked

HINT: Sometimes a key-ring of right diameter will fit perfectly over negative ring Grad

Got it.
I have some small brass shim sheets to make a ring, though I cannot find it now… perhaps this will be enough to make contact.

Edit: I tried a loop of soldering lead and it worked!

Now my next question is: If I fabricate a brass shim instead of the soldering lead, will it not be dangerous for the shim if it ‘bites’ into the anodized, threaded part of the head?

No danger. The shim your making will simply be an extension of the negative contact. The entire body of the flashlight is also negative, though it is non-conductive where the anodizing is present. Therefore if the shim bites the anodizing and makes contact with bare threads then there will be no difference in potentials (negative on negative).

Should my information be incorrect in the slightest please inform me as i am always learning as well and may not recollect everything properly. ALSO, ANYTHING I WRITE PLEASE TAKE WITH A THOUSAND GRAINS OF SALT AND YOUR OWN LIABILITY, AS YOU SHOULD WITH ALL INFORMATION.

tatasal
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GRAY LITNIN wrote:
tatasal wrote:
Streamer wrote:
I’m sure head and switch are fine. Thumbs Up

Yes. Make a circle of appropriately sized wire to fit over the drivers negative ring so tube can make contact. But be very careful as to avoid a short. Shocked

HINT: Sometimes a key-ring of right diameter will fit perfectly over negative ring Grad

Got it.
I have some small brass shim sheets to make a ring, though I cannot find it now… perhaps this will be enough to make contact.

Edit: I tried a loop of soldering lead and it worked!

Now my next question is: If I fabricate a brass shim instead of the soldering lead, will it not be dangerous for the shim if it ‘bites’ into the anodized, threaded part of the head?

No danger. The shim your making will simply be an extension of the negative contact. The entire body of the flashlight is also negative, though it is non-conductive where the anodizing is present. Therefore if the shim bites the anodizing and makes contact with bare threads then there will be no difference in potentials (negative on negative).

Great!

and thanks to you guys…you just saved my day, and my light.

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also check button top _ On Battery _ for any flattening. it happens.

also you may try small magnet on button top for extra length to make sure this is not a positive contact problem.

tatasal
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Streamer wrote:
also check button top _ On Battery _ for any flattening. it happens.

also you may try small magnet on button top for extra length to make sure this is not a positive contact problem.

The button top flattening is ruled out as my solder-blobbed Sanyo 14500 works in my other EA11.

I have two new questions:

1. What holds the pcb in its place in the head in the first place?

2. If I put a shim to make contact, how big is the possibility of the pcb sinking deeper into the head, again losing contact?

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Well, I’ve never taken mine apart so I do not know the internals. Was hoping you wouldn’t have to go there.

I think you could fashion a shim from rolled up aluminum foil to tell you what you want to know pretty quickly. If it lights, you will then know the problem.

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After thinking a little more, were you able to cycle the light on and off when you hooked it up with battery holder? You shoud have been able to. If not, the switch STILL could be bad. It should cycle on and off.
tatasal
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Streamer wrote:
After thinking a little more, were you able to cycle the light on and off when you hooked it up with battery holder? You shoud have been able to. If not, the switch STILL could be bad. It should cycle on and off.

Hi Streamer, I have answered your post and your suggestion worked (post # 13)

Now, materials ready for tonight’s project:
Either I grind out the washer’s inside or cut shims to fit.

tatasal
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Perhaps these two concerns of mine went unnoticed, here they are again:

1. What holds the pcb in its place in the head?

2. If I put a shim to make contact, how big is the possibility of the pcb sinking deeper into the head, again losing contact?

Is that white blob at about 12 o’ clock position in the head on the right a glue to keep the pcb in place?

On the head in the left (the malfunctioning one) no longer has it.

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I’m guessing it to only be thermal adhesive. I believe the driver sits on a shelf and is not going anywhere.

You did not answer if you could cycle light on and off with battery holder.

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