FW3A Troubleshooting / FAQ

Hmmmmm…. good point CLB. :open_mouth::+1:

it seems some have reported their springs to be in random positions, some with only one of the three pads soldered, some have two, and indeed mine had the spring edge roughly at the 3 o’clock position, but the spring surface was still against the trace mask, but only had the 8 o’clock pad soldered. it was a bunch of unlucky circumstances to what happened to mine, if toppled over off a 20” high night table, landed tail down hard on a hard-wood floor with a sharp “clunk” then it instantly turned on and began to ramp up to maximum mode on its own. I guess the weight of the 30Q had slammed down hard enough on the spring to force it through the mask to the trace. After that i don’t know what happened as i kept trying to turn it off with the switch to no avail. then tapped it a couple times on the edge of the table, then it went out but still flickered, it was really hot after running on max for the minute or so, i then began to unscrew the extremely hot head section to pull the battery out. I have no idea if something else also shorted in the head, but something obviously sent a ton of amps current through that shorted trace to burn & melt it like a fuse.

Mine has the edge at 3 o’clock with all 3 pads soldered. The pad at 4 o’clock has a lot more solder than the other 2, especially the one at 8 o’clock, so the bottom of the spring over the trace is raised up and won’t make contact with it even when I push down hard on the spring.

This is a good thing I guess :slight_smile:

Sound like yours is good and solid with a bit of a gap over the trace with no risk of spring movement. :+1:

While you can never be too safe with the spring it doesn’t seem like we are convinced this is the only variable that caused this.

Did you ever take a good picture of the driver side? Does the signal pad line up nicely where your driver is seated? Kawi had one that didn’t so rest assured i’m not just trying to agitate you DBSAR.

Aux boards for the FW3A are now on sale

Prototype with ice blue, pink and warm white

i didn’t take a photo or took the head apart yet, but its looks slightly off center, but no burn marks.

Mine is only soldered in one place. I guess I will solder the other two , maybe rotate it also if no gap.

Yep the driver is quite smaller than the driver seat/pocket…some measurements…

seat ID

driver diameter

driver flat diameter

batt tube ID

driver smd/clearance pocket ID

The 2 GB and the 1 X-L HI 1A lights, the drivers are a press fit, zero slop…… this is one of two of the Nichia Lights….

This does not seem likely. If the spring touches the trace, it’s like pushing the button. It ramps up, but then the thermal stepdown should activate.

What your describing, the thermal stepdown not activating, sounds like a driver short where the driver is bypassed and no longer in control of the LED’s.

Did you check out your driver/head area to see if anything looks shorted?

I think I’ll try shorting the spring to the trace to try and duplicate the sceneries described. I’ll scrape away a bit of the solder mask and solder a single tiny strand of a copper wire from the trace to the spring. I’ll see if it burns through like a fuse or what exactly. It might be next week before I can do it.

:open_mouth: . Whoa…. . :open_mouth: :open_mouth:
That’s “taking one for the team” to a whole new level!! :beer:

Not at all. Like I said earlier, in your case it sounds like the driver got bypassed somehow. From what I can see as to how the switch pcb is designed, shorting the spring to the trace should only simulate the button being held down. The thermal stepdown should activate. I assume it will, unless a held down button somehow bypasses the stepdown software. Toykeeper probably knows what the code will do.

High current usually goes through the vias on the pcb. Maybe the trace is weaker in comparison to the vias and that’s why it got overheated. I really don’t know. It’s a mystery.

I figure using a tiny wire strand will act as a fuse so I don’t risk burning the trace. I can fix the trace if it should burn, but that’s extra work. :confounded:

I can’t lose this nagging feeling that this is an effect of a loose driver retaining ring . I am in no way as knowledgeable as most of you , but the lights behavior when the ring is loose is exactly how DBSAR’s did . Is it possible with the current running wild , and a shock ( blow ) to the tail at that moment , caused the trace to short ?

No idea why he is so defensive about this but i’m with you i’d rather know that we found the real cause and not a side effect of the primary issue. Sending people down some rabbit hole of spring soldering only to find out the signal tube bridged something on a loose driver (hypothetically) is counter productive. If a revision is to be made to assembly or otherwise the real cause needs to be determined.

No harm in getting to the bottom of this. I’d like to know if I need to lock mine out or exactly what mod is needed or if this is just a fluke.

That’s the thing with e-switch though. Firmware lockout does nothing if it shorts. Physical lockout is hard to do on this light and not recommended anyways cause nothing is glued. Until we know more I would suggest just making sure the driver is lined up and centered and the retaining ring is not loose.

DBSAR, did you change your light to ramp to Turbo or does it only ramp up to 1000 or so lumen like stock?

I was testing to see if the thermal protection would still kick in when you hold the button permanently, but I forgot Anduril doesn’t ramp to Turbo (at least not in stock form).

Okay, I found time to test this today. Nothing bad happened. It just ramps up to the stock level. No Turbo and no high current going through the tail circuit. There’s no need to worry about the spring shorting the trace.

I took some pics and a video to show what happens. I’ll put it in the next post.

My point is something else happened with DBSAR’s light that caused it to go to Turbo and burn that trace. This is still a mystery. I suspect something in the driver came loose due to the fall and the driver got shorted somewhere in the head. I don’t really know, I’m just trying to eliminate things to narrow in on the true cause.

Interested to find out the root cause, if not just the tail trace. Still, it sounds like it’s worth soldering the spring properly, to prevent it from damaging the tail trace.