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

Trying to make any device all things to all people most often results in compromises that please no one

Just got my light and I have to say that the assembly of the light left a lot to be desired.

Compared to the past BLF flashlight, this one felt like it was put together by my 11 year old nephew……greasy finger print’S’ on the both sides of the lens, driver board retaining ring not even two turns in, o-rings improperly installed etc etc.

After taken it apart, cleaning all the contact areas (both ends of the inner and outer battery tubes, contact rings on both the tail cap and driver board) and looked at all the potential problem areas I am still not getting any sign of life from the light so it’s time to contact Neal about getting some help.

Kind of a bummer to get a DOA light after waiting weeks for it.

On a separate note, I love how compact the light is, thanks for everyone’s hard work making this light a reality.

In the early versions of FSM, it could actually handle Morse code button events. Each event was defined as a sequence of actions involving press, release, press timeout (hold), and release timeout. To figure out which event the user did, it would compare the current sequence against a list of known or expected sequences, then fire off a notification any time there was a match.

But Morse code input sequences generally make for a bad UI.

So I simplified the event-handling code quite a bit. Instead of a sequence, each action is a single byte, a simple counter with some extra flags. It allows one or more button presses, and the last one can optionally be held longer. Mid-sequence holds are no longer supported. This makes things a lot simpler and easier and faster, and it reduced the overall code size by about 10%.

… which is why there is now extra room to expand muggle mode if desired.

I could put Morse code input handling back in, but then there wouldn’t be room to improve muggle mode.

Very true.

Usually I look at how passionate people are about what they want, and look at how divided people are on each topic. If a topic is something people don’t really seem to care much about, or at least don’t argue much about, I can generally just pick a sensible default and people will be okay with it. But if people disagree fiercely about something, I should probably make it configurable.

Most of Anduril exists because I’ve spent the past several years listening to people in the community talking and often arguing about what they want. I even did an informal global survey in a variety of flashlight groups to see how those desires differ (or not) around the world. And then I tried to put as much of that as possible into 8 KiB of ROM, preferably without internal conflicts or inconsistencies. And to keep myself entertained, I also added some fun extras.

So that’s what we have now. It’s definitely not perfect, and it’s not complete, but it’s at least a rough approximation of the sum of lots of different people’s views pulling things in lots of different directions.

And it continues to change. It seems like the todo list keeps getting longer, not shorter. I guess the only thing to do is see where it goes…

I think I need some time alone with my light too. It’s cold today, and if I squint hard enough, that beer and thumb looks almost like a soapy bath and a candle. :partying_face:

Maybe I’m just stupid, but it looks like my light just doesn’t work. When I put a battery in, the light give a small flicker but I can’t turn the light on normal mode, turbo mode or really any mode. Also, the tailswitch and spring just fall out when I unscrew the back to remove the battery.

Check out these two threads, they might be helpful in your case….

1) FW3A Useful Information.....

2) FW3A Troubleshooting / FAQ

Oh BTW, you’re suppose to only loosen the head assembly to insert the battery and not the tailcap.

Good luck!

Personally… I have no animosity toward “muggles” ( newbies, the untrained, whatever you may call them) at all.
We were all one at one time or another.

But that being said, you don’t….

Just jump in a Funny Car to make your first pass.

Or let your completely untrained buddy do a test run (or any run) with your Top Fuel Dragster and a newly built 11,000+ horsepower engine….

Or decide one day to quit your job flipping burgers at McDonalds & get your super rich Uncle to buy you a Grand National Car so you can go race at Talladega next weekend…

And I have never seen “training wheels” in the Tour de France.

You use or do what your skill level allows you to. If you want to do more… you learn, starting at the beginning; and work your way up to where you want to be…. you learn.

If you want to fly a F-18… you don’t punch a switch 6 times and start with ’beginner mode’…… :person_facepalming:

You start at the beginning & work your way up.

There is no need at all IMO, to loan a “beginner” a hot rod light they are not qualified to use & have no earthly idea how to use; just because it is a cool looking light… maybe even ‘Tacticool’. :smiley: . :person_facepalming:
And very likely they have no interest in learning in the first place.

There is an abundance of lights with a simple UI, many even have ramping; that will suffice just fine & be much more ‘newbie friendly’…. without turning the FW3A into a 240 lumen light on Max. :person_facepalming:

YMMV…. MWN. :beer:

Ohh. I didn’t realize you are supposed to be inserting the battery via the head. I cranked the tailcap on down and it’s working now, thanks for the help :slight_smile:

Have you tried establishing dominance?

Sure thing!

Glad your light is working....mine is still in deep deep sleep.

Muggles? Or MUD BLOODS! :slight_smile:

Shame on you for that mental image :person_facepalming: I hurt myself laughing :smiley:

My FW3A is in my current home town...

It'll probably be delivered later today!

Please people, some 2 years have elapsed between the first announcement of this light and the PM with an invitation to order it. Would it hurt to take 5 more minutes to browse the manual or read the card where you were asked to insert the battery from the head?

I know you’ve read this somewhere and everywhere before, but nevertheless will repeat it here, in this order:

- Open the tail-section, beware of the number of parts that emerge, clean every bit, and reassemble. Because this sequence does not have to be repeated in the foreseable future: do this with some force.

- Remove the bezel, lift the optics, blow all dirt out, clean the smudges form the lens, clean every bit and reassemble. Also with enough force that will prevent things from accidental loosening.

  • Between body and head, loosen the retaining ring a bit, blow out the debris, re-assure yourself that the driver is properly alligned en fasten the retaining ring again. With some force.
    Last but no least: screw back the body with MODERATE force. DON’T give it an extra yank. In my case: that triggers havoc.

Looks like the eagle has finally landed: my 7A arrived to Finland yesterday using the cheapest shipping option.

If anyone cares here’s the events:
29.4 ordered
8.5 fulfilled
9.5 shipped
10.5 left from China
20.5 arrived in Finland

My concern was less about “muggles” than it is about flashaholics that get into a state they don’t know how to get out of. We’ve seen several posts in this thread about people thinking their light is broken, when it seems they just got stuck in muggle mode after playing with the light.

The issue is how to get out of it easily. Yes, it is pretty easy: 6 clicks. But, that’s apparently not easy enough, at least not without reading the cheat-sheet and understanding the meaning of it. There’s a lot of modes, and that makes the UI a bit confusing.

Everyone knows how to change a battery, and that’s generally what most people will try if their light is acting funny. I just thought that a battery-change should revert the light from muggle back to normal mode, like it does when cancelling momentary mode.

Finally mine arrived today, Nice to see that the box is marked so u didnt have to guess what u ordered. Really a great looking light well made, so far no issues love the warmish tint and floodish beam, looks awesome hard to believe this light is finally in my and many others hands after so long production but worth the wait, so thanks to all involved you all did great job on this ! i hope this light will sell for many years.

I printed up a couple of diffusers in yellow, a new color that is not translucent.

You are lucky, I ordered 3D and 7A, and I received two 7A today. :person_facepalming: :person_facepalming:

My XPL HI arrived yesterday and the spring at the head is messed up and I think it needs to be replaced. I can’t solder this kind of thing…

Some have said that it’s futile to try to get a warranty replacement form Nealsgadgets. Is this true?

What’s the best way I should proceed to try to get a replacement?

I emailed Neal and haven’t heard anything back after a day, which may be normal. Maybe someone here can tell me what to expect, or best way to try to get this resolved…

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