Fun with the Sipik 58

When it comes to flashlights I prefer small cylindrical lights that fit in the pants pocket. I don’t like bulging heads or crenelations, and I like the light to be grippy enough to not get lost.

For modding, my favorite host is the Sipik 58. The Sipik 58 has a very clean cylindrical shape that feels much better in the pocket. It is also nearly fully knurled for good grip. It feels fantastic in the hand… far better than the larger and more awkward shape of the Sipik 68.

Of course all is not perfect in the Sipik 58. The innards leave a lot to be desired. The stock Sipik 58 is a 1xAA sized one-mode zoomable aspheric. It uses an Osram Golden Dragon LED and is much dimmer than the larger Sipik 68. It comes with black colored Type II anodize that wears through quickly and looks like crap after a few months of pocket use banging against the keys. It has a full pill with platform for the star and fits a 16mm star and 15mm driver. The stock Sipik 58 is too underpowered and dim to be usable as an EDC…. but that’s where modding comes in.

Here are a couple Sipik 58s I extensively modded:



I spent quite a bit of time with these lights… especially with the zoomable one. I performed the following modifications:

Sipik 58 with triple Nichia 219: (length 90mm, width 24mm)

  • Pill - this one used the pill from a Sipik 58 clone. Unlike the stock 58, the clone’s pill was hollow. I shorted the pill by sawing off almost everything above the screw threads. Then I placed a round copper disk on top to make a platform for the star. Below the disk, inside the pill I placed 3 more copper disks to serve as a heatsink. I then put low temp solder paste between each disk and around the pill and placed the whole pill in the oven. This produced a nicely soldered pill. I then drilled a hole in the center for the driver wires and two small holes on the sides into which I inserted small copper posts. The 20mm triple star sits on top of the platform. The small copper posts engage notches on the star allowing the pill to be unscrewed.
  • Driver - I used a 3.04 amp 17mm Nanjg 105c 3-mode driver from Illumination Supply. Before I filled in the pill with copper, I used a round file to enlarge the interior of the pill to better fit the driver. I also filed down the outer edges of the driver so that it will fit into the body of the light. I also filed the bottom of the pill down so that the pill will still screw in all the way even with the driver glued on the end. Since the new driver is considerably wider than the original driver, the new driver is glued onto the end of the pill with arctic alumina rather than sitting completely inside the pill.
  • Emitter and Optics - This was my first attempt at a triple emitter light. I’m using triple Nichia 219 4500k high CRI LEDS that I reflowed onto a 20mm parallel triple star. The emitters, star and optic were all purchased from Illumination Supply. The driver supplies each emitter with 1 amp.
  • Lens and front Bezel - The basic Sipik 58 is a zoomable aspheric with the lens glued into the metal bezel. I had a clone Sipik 58 bezel/lens on hand that had an aluminum bezel. My initial plan was to remove the aspheric lens and then file down the aluminum bezel as small as possible. Fortunately, this turned out not to be necessary. Instead, I took the lens, lens gasket and steel bezel from a Roche F12, which fit perfectly.
  • Switch - I swapped in a different clicky switch for a softer click. Also added a spacer out of some rubber grip tape at the bottom of the switch boot. Replaced the ugly orange boot with a nice black one I had laying around.
  • Body - I used Greased Lightning to remove all anodizing and then polished up the light with light sandpaper and metal polish. I replaced the stock tailcap with the tailcap from a Sipik 68. I think the smooth tailcap looks better on the Sipik 58 and certainly feels more comfortable in the pocket. I also used arctic silver to permanently glue the sliding portion of the bezel to the body. This light is not a zoomie.

Result is pretty nice: The Nichia 219 has a really nice tint. This is definitely a close-in light. It’s great for indoor use, but has very little throw. At a guess I’d estimate around 500 lumens output. I’m considering powering up this light, but am not sure it’s really worth it. There’s enough room to add another row of 7135 chips increasing output to 4.5 amps. And I could replace the Nichia 219s with XPG2 neutrals for higher output.

Sipik 58 zoomie with XML2 neutral - this is an earlier mod so some of my techniques weren’t quite as refined. (length 91 mm, width 24 mm)

  • Pill - I used the stock SK58 pill. I filed the top of the pill down slightly so that the bezel could retract closer to the LED in flood mode. I also used arctic alumina to glue 3 notched aluminum disks behind the emitter plate to serve as an extra heatsink (if I were doing this again I’d use copper disks with the solder paste method I used on the other light). I bent a thin piece of aluminum and place it around the top of the pill threads. This prevents the pill from screwing down completely and allows the sliding bezel to extend and retract the optimum distance.
  • Emitter - currently using a 16mm aluminum star with an XML2 5,000k neutral tint emitter from Illumination Supply. When my 16mm Sinkpads arrive (hopefully next month), I’ll replace the aluminum star with a sinkpad.
  • Reflector - I cut off a plastic reflector from an old Underwater Kinetics incandescent lamp module refill I had laying around. The reflector is glued to the plastic ring that is press fit into the pill. The reflector gives much better flood mode, providing a very wide, noticeably brighter hotspot, while eliminating all rings around the flood. In spot mode, the reflector produces an ugly ring around the image of the emitter, but it’s not bright enough to impair distance vision and is acceptable to me.
  • Driver - using a 2.8 amp Nanjg 105c with edges slightly filed down and glued to the bottom of the pill with arctic alumina. I soldered a bit of solder braid to the edge of the driver and then bent it along the side to serve as negative contact. The driver is a DrJones lumodrv driver with shortcuts to 10, 100 and minimum, and 2-way ramping.
  • Switch - since I’m using lumodrv, I needed an electronic switch rather than a mechanical one. I purchased a small momentary pushbutton switch from radioshack and mounted it on a plastic disk. A wire bypass connects the tailcap body directly to the switch spring. Meanwhile, the momentary pushbutton has one connection to the spring and another to a flat contact glued to the inside of the tailcap around the spring. I replaced the ugly orange switch boot with a spare Fenix tailcap boot I had laying around. I initially had an insert at the top of the tailcap boot giving the switch a very soft touch. However, I had an accident once where it turned on in my pocket and I didn’t notice. To fix this problem, I removed the insert so it takes more force to push the button and the risk of accidental activation is much reduced.
  • Switch wire - the electronic switch needed a wire going from the 4-star on the driver to the tailcap switch. I used a file to carve a slot along the inside of the battery compartment. This wire is then soldered to a ring of tin around the back end of the battery compartment near the tailcap. When the tailcap is closed, this ring connects with the flat contact on the endcap creating the connection. It works well now, but was a real pain to get working initially. Also, the wire must be desoldered from the tin ring in order to remove the pill, which is necessary to lube the o-rings around the sliding bezel.
  • Body - I used Greased Lightning, fine sandpaper and metal polish to remove the stock anodizing and give it the polished aluminum look. I also filed down the top of the knurling on the body. This allows the bezel to retract a few mm more than on the stock Sipik 58, producing a wider flood.
  • O-rings - I removed the metal C-ring on the zoom mechanism and replaced it with a much smoother and quieter o-ring. A second, very narrow o-ring was added at the widest part of the pill. This produced a completely sealed waterproof light, but unfortunately caused a new problem. Vacuum action would cause the zoom mechanism to cycle on its own. Cycling the zoom caused the internal volume to change relative to the external air. In order to allow the zoom mechanism to work properly I removed the o-ring at the tailcap. This allows air pressure to equalize and the zoom mechanism will stay in whatever position it is set.

The result is very nice. It’s an extremely small zoomable light with a much wider flood than most zoomies while still giving a decent spot. An XML sized emitter with such a small lens will never be a super thrower, but it’s still bright enough to illuminate something a few hundred feet away. At a guess I estimate output in flood mode around 900 lumens. In a ceiling bounce test it’s noticeably brighter than my Zebralight SC600 and my modded Niteye EYE10 (running on IMR 18350 and with XML2 5,000k neutral white)

I run both Sipik 58s exclusively on AW IMR 14500.

Hi Firelight2. You have put a lot off time and effort into these two lights. They should be little pocket rockets with these drivers. They will also keep your hands nice and warm on a cold winters day. Nice work.

Very nice mods. The SK58 looks like an interesting host. That triple Nichia looks real good.

Great work!

I suppose it took some cursing now and then to make all the adjustments for these lights?


The zoomable XML2 mod took a ton of time and effort with much cursing. The hardest part was getting the switch wire from the driver board to the tailcap switch. It took a lot of planning and trial and error before I hit on a workable mechanism.

In contrast, the Nichia 219 mod with its mechanical switch was far simpler with far fewer complications. One concern I had was how I would get the pill out. The 20mm triple star took up the entire width of the head and I had to saw off the 2 slots that are normally turned to remove the pill. I ended up using a pin-vise drill to drill 2 very narrow holes into which I inserted short lengths of copper rod. To unscrew the pill, insert needle-nosed pliers into the notches on the star and turn. Other notches on the star will hit the posts resulting in the entire pill screwing or unscrewing.