Maratac CR123, a short overview.

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Coppet
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Maratac CR123, a short overview.

Maratac flashlights and other items for daily EDC needs can only be bought exclusively at CountyComm in the USA, but meanwhile there are also shops in some other countries like e.g. England which sell a limited range of CountyComm items. There are also some Massdrop Maratac flashlights to buy from time to time, but you have to be quick because the Maratac flashlights there are mostly limited in quantity.

When I first saw the Maratac CR123 it was absolutely clear to me that I need to have one, I need have to have them all!
But it worked for the first time when in July 2018 the Rev.3 was published by CountyComm, my friend Jon_Slider from the USA was so nice and sent me two of these Maratac Rev.3s.
Meanwhile I bought one Rev.2 and two Rev.1 used, for much more money than they ever cost at CountyComm what speaks for the rarity or popularity. But that was and is worth it to me because for me personally it is simply the flashlight par excellence.
The equipment of the Maratac is also kept quite simple, Twisty with 3 modes, no unnecessary flashing, solid copper and no big extras, kept simple and built solid like a tank.



The Rev.1, I call it now just like that, although according to Mike Burton of CountyComm it was not foreseeable that there will be a successor at all. But for the sake of simplicity I call it Rev.1 now because it was the first version.

The Rev.1 appeared for the first time about 2011 on the CountyComm homepage. The Rev.1 was to be seen from today’s point of view and the following 2 further variants probably rather as a prototype. 94 grams empty weight and a maximum performance of 260 lumen (manufacturer’s specification) with a CR123 battery. Equipped with a Cree XM-L T6 and an Orange Peel reflector, it was quite well prepared for that time. The disadvantages were that it wasn’t compatible with a RCR123, i.e. 16340 batteries (which the following models aren’t, by the way), but that was to be overcome in view of the long battery life. A slightly too short thread was also criticized and the O-ring was visible in the switched off state, which raised doubts about the water tightness. After switching off, i.e. loosening the lamp head, there was not too much thread left and there were reports that the head of the Maratac had landed in the trouser pocket after switching off because it unscrewed itself.

Around 2014 the revised successor, the Rev.2, came on the market. It was optically a bit changed which is probably also due to weight saving, so the Knurling was milled deeper which now also looks more aggressive and has saved a few grams of copper. On the other hand, the massive tail was conically milled out to save another few grams, which optically can be described as absolutely successful. The Rev.2 now had an empty weight of 78.1 grams and was actually much lighter than the first version. The thread has been changed, it is now finer and still as long as the Rev.1, but the finer thread means you have more screws to screw and so the problem of the first Maratac has been solved.
The equipment has not changed so much, a CREE XP-G2(R5) and a maximum power of 300 lumen were used now.

Of the Rev.2 there was also an identical version in stainless steel, unfortunately I don’t have one (yet) and can’t say too much about it.

Then in 2018 the Rev.3 came to the CountyComm Homepage. It looks similar to the Rev.2 except for the tail…….so CountyComm didn’t necessarily get a hit, my opinion but it’s easier to attach a lanyard to the Maratac now.
The changed design of the tail saved a few grams and the Rev.3 has today an empty weight of 75.9 grams. Here everything remained again with the old one except for the LED which is now a CREE XP-G3 and has a maximum of 450 lumen. The thread is now even finer than on the Rev.2 so that you have to screw for a while if you want to change the battery and yes there is still no OK for LiIon batteries.

Optically the three models differ already clearly but also under the copper there are still some differences. So as already mentioned all three models have different threads, so no Maratac Lego is possible because nothing fits together. The green glowing GITD O-ring in front of the lens was only available on Rev.2 and Rev.3, but if you want to retrofit it, diameter outside 19mm and inside 17mm fits perfectly.
Also the Pill, the aluminum heat sink on which the driver and the LED sit, is not exchangeable among themselves by the different threads. And on the Rev.3 this pill also has a left-hand thread compared to the right-hand thread on the Rev.1 and Rev.2, which can lead to confusion if you want to remove the pill.

With the first two models PWM was still used in low and middle mode, the Rev.3 is without PWM or it is so high frequency that you can’t perceive it anymore.



Here is the performance of the different models according to the manufacturer’s specifications:

Rev.1:

Low: 1.8 lumens for 200 hours
Mid: 50 lumens for 4.5 hours
High: 260 lumen for 1.5 hours

Rev.2:

Low: 2 lumens for 210 hours
Mid: 55 lumens for 5 hours
High: 300 lumen for 1.6 hours

Rev.3:

Low: 5 lumens for 180 hours
Mid: 55 lumens for 5 hours
High: 450 lumen for 1.5 hours

The dimensions are the same for all 3 variants:
Length: 2.7” Diameter: .75”
Length: 7cm Diameter: 22mm

Here are some beam shots to compare the different LEDs, on the left you can see Rev.1, then Rev.2 and on the right Rev.3.
The first picture is in low mode, the second in mid mode and the third in high mode.


I currently have a Maratac CR123 Rev.3 in Scotland at CRX to rebuild, unfortunately it still takes a few days until I get it back but then I’ll also introduce it here.

Here’s the difference almost without patina and with some patina on my two Rev.1, I think just the patina makes copper so interesting.



I would be very happy if you would post pictures and experiences of your Maratac CR123 here, rebuilds are also welcome:-) And if you want to add something else, please, this is to be an overview of this Maratac CR123 model series and to animate one or the other also to look up.

Many thanks for reading!

CRX
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Nice overview Thumbs Up

I have always liked these little chunks of copper lights, except that they are twisty operated and a little underpowered stock.

Coppet wrote:
I would be very happy if you would post pictures and experiences of your Maratac CR123 here, rebuilds are also welcome Smile

Here's a Revision1 model I modded to a triple Nichia, tail switch and sent to a good home. Triple Nichia 219C 5000K emitters on Noctigon MCPCB
Carclo 10507 TIR Optic
ARC Glass
18mm x 7mm solid copper heatsink
Nanjg 105c 3A driver
Green tritium vial
Lockout-able
Reverse clicky tail switch
Max – 900lm OTFAnd of course a special Rev3 is in the making Wink
As you say, the R1 is a lot of copper, the best version in my opinion as I like the aesthetics of it best.
The R2 is also quite nice with the recessed tail, but the Revision three tail is not so good a design.

.

Maratac CR123 Rev3.Cree XP-G3
CR123 3v Cell
Low - 15lm
Med - 61lm
High - 245lm

Maratac CR123 Rev3 - Triple Nichia 219C 5000K - LD-A4 6A - 16340 - Lighted Rv Clicky Tail Sw - 1624lm.Triple Nichia 219C D240 5000K 90CRI on 18mm MTN DTP MCPCB
L4P LD-A4 3A driver
10507 Carclo optic
Green GITD glow disc
ARC glass
Copper & aluminium pill
ILC-0 reverse clicky green lighted tail switch
SS clip
Lockout-able
Length – 70mm
Width – 22mm
Weight – 104g (with 16340 cell)

Max - 1624lm (DD)
Max - 780lm (3A)Maratac CR123 Rev3 - Triple Nichia 219C 5000K - LD-A4 6A - 16340 - Lighted Rv Clicky Tail Sw - 1624lm.

Maratac CR123 Rev3 - Triple Nichia 219C 5000K - LD-A4 6A - 16340 - Lighted Rv Clicky Tail Sw - 1624lm.

Coppet
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Your custom Rev. 1 is a dream, when I see these pictures I always have to look at my two normal Rev.1 and consider whether maybe one of them would like to go to Scotland on a wellness trip Big Smile
But first I wait for my other flashlights made by CRX and then I decide further Thumbs Up

Matchoo
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I love these lights! Must say that the new tail design is awful. They’re on sale at countycomm but I’d rather have an older model. One day I would love a CRX version! Beautiful.