G0OSE's Old Lumens Competition 2020 entry

Ok, so bit of a late entry and I’m still waiting for 1 part (glass ar coated)
I will upload all the photo and write up when I’m finished.

Well I haven’t a lot of spare money so I decided to do a small light utilising a $3 broken pen light which to be fair is quite powerful, just badly made. This will be a real budget build.
It is going to be brass, 1 mode, 1aaa (maybe 2) Nichia 219BT Neutral White 5000K CRI80, there will be some glow bits and maybe some patina work.

Here is a sneak peek of the switch…. not finished yet.

Ok, so this is the first time I've entered this and it was a bit daunting. However, I am very pleased with what I ended up with, although it's not finished.

This year, like many of us money is tight, so I decided rather than buy more, I'd utilise one of the pen lights I'd bought and given away as presents. they are really powerful, but sadly have no pill, in fact noting, the led board sits on a ring, as such it did not cool well, in fact it barely did anything. In the end the led popped in mine so it was dead - I decided rather than buy a new driver, reflector and switch I'd re-use the ones I had.

I already had some brass tube, so all I needed to get was an led, I could have re-used the lens but it was plastic so I bought a double AR coated one from Kaidomain with the other bits. I also needed a few gas plumbing bits with threads as sadly I can't do them and my old lathe doesn't have a particularly good feed, it was kinda botched on from another lathe by the previous owner and it's 1 speed lol.

The gas plumbing bits would provide the threads, which I will steal from them as you'll see later.

I will just say I intended this to be hand made, and at first I was managing with a step drill in my regular B&D drill, but the holes I was drilling were so close I just couldn't drill straight enough every time and lost parts going off-centre and cutting the thread i was trying to steal. So I had to do parts on the lathe. I could have done a lot more by hand (like polishing - could have used drill etc) but since I'd already moved into machine made now, I thought I may as well use the lathe more making my job easier....slightly.

I will just say NONE of this was really planned, or written down - I kinda had the idea in my head and just did it on the fly, jumping hurdles when i needed to!

Don’t forget to click on all the photo’s to see full size, and to get max resolution you have to click the ‘load full resolution’ or is will appear blurry.

The donor light - they are not bad stock, but they will burn out eventually due to no cooling whatsoever. They are very powerful though with a good tight beam.

Ok so here we have some pics of the brass barrel lock innards, I get these from my work when they break - little springs sit in those hole with the pins on top of them etc I started filling slices of them with gitd a while ago and they are useful too for bits. next you can see the newly attached Nichia 218BT 5000k CRI80 from KD. I quite like this colour, I have been liking sst20's in 4k but they are rather warm for some.

Pill V1!!

Here we have my first attempt at the pill. Those brass barrel locks as it happens are the exact size of the bore of the brass tube I already had, which was very lucky! This first one was made entirely by hand, no lathe involved. Soldered a copper piece on the end, shaped it with a file the wet and dry paper.

Sawed off the brass barrel (no holes in the bottom end) the step drilled it out to 12mm for the driver to fit. later it became apparent this pill was going to be too long..... this is what happens when you don't draw it first lol! but hey, it's part of the challenge!

The switch.

The switch is the part I was looking forward to the most making. I knew in my head what it was going to look like so it was easy to make. I already had the switch and luckily it fitted perfectly into the brass gas fitting I was using, like a glove. Sadly the switch was to cause me some hassle later, it was just too long really - if I was doing it again I'd get some other shorter switch unit. I constructed the inside with another of the brass 1/4" caps. Firstly I flattened it off with my parting tool, then I drilled it out to fit a little brass cap I'd found on another switch (theres a photo in a section further down) I drilled the cap out but not right through so the little cap would stay in, put a slice of pipe around it and a slice of the barrel lock with holes. Next i filled the holes with gitd powder and UV resin mixed. Lastly the whole thing was soldered together with 'Engineer' solder paste - where has this stuff been all my life!!!!!????

The Head.

Here I am making the head, using 1.5 1/4" female sockets, turned down diameter to the 16mm same as my pipe and soldered together, then it needed to be drilled out to enable the pill to fit in (13mm). I had to leave about 5mm of the 1/4" thread at the bottom to enable the body to screw into it - the pill is loose inside eventually (not sloppy loose) and when you screw the body on the batteries will push through up into the spring and keep it all tight.

Switch porn...

I really was happy the way the switch came out, so did some glamour shots lol!

Joints....not the smoking kind.

Here we have one of the trickiest parts of the whole build. this is how I stole threads from the fittings to use in the pipe. Firstly the male threads, I drilled the nipples out to 10.5mm to enable the batteries to fit through, then turned the hex out. Then female threads turned down a female 1/4" socket to 14mm (the inside of the brass pipe) then parted off on the lathe. I will use these bits to put the joints in the light.

The back of the head.

This is the back part of my head, using another 1/4" cap. Turned the cap to 14mm to match my tube id and left the thread, this will screw into the body. I hold it in the lathe using another 1/4" female socket.

The head is made from 1.5 of the female sockets, soldered together then turned down to size. Once this was complete I had a rough idea of lengths and it was obvious the pill was too long - I ended up making 3 in the end! I will use the others in next project though so not wasted.

Pill v3....

Here is the pill v3 which is so cute.......... made the same way as it's longer brothers but fitted lol! The shots below show me drilling out the head, which maybe should have gone further up this write up, but hey ho...

You can se the cutey pill fits right in now and the spring sticks out the bottom, held in bu the little bit of original thread I'd left when drilling out.

I am internal turning out the slot for the glass lens here and below cutting the body /head thread joint to length - took a few go's to get it a perfect fit.

Here I am making the retaining ring that will hold the glass, and indeed the whole pill assembly in. I started with a 1/4" Brass Hex cap with a lip which was bigger than the body. I firstly used the parting off tool to cut the washer out, then drilled it out to 10mm with the step drill. Next I parted off the ring which was tricky as there was only just enough room for the parting tool as there wasn't much 1/4" thread to grip.

The ring was then sanded on wet and dry, varying grades, then I decided I would superglue this last piece on, for several reasons, the main one being I was worried about melting the reflector with the heat, which sadly is plastic and I only have 1.

Nearing the end and some beam shots. Here we have it all assembled and working - then eventually polished right up. This thing is damn powerful for what it is, really. The beam went all the way to the bottom of my rather scruffy garden and lit my entire kitchen!

In photo 7 check out the weird ar reflection/hologram! and in photo 11 on the floor it is glowing blue - look like a firework! weird.

Now for those who liked it shiney, it’s about to get very un shiney very fast…

After watching some videos on youtube for jewellery patinas, I came across this robot voiced, but very thorough set of video tests, there are several more but this one is definitely worth a watch.

So I am using ammonia, white vinegar, soy sauce and salt.

First i found a suitable tall container with airtight bag and elastic band, scrunched up some kitchen paper in the bottom and liberally sprayed with ammonia and also put a little pot of it in the bottom. Next made a little hanging bar with some copper wire, then cleaned the glimmering light with isopropyl. Next with gloves and glasses on I cover the light with vinegar and push lots of pink Himalayan salt on thensealed on the bag. Within just 10 minutes things started to happen.

Next I used soy sauce and more salt, because according to the video it does a nice green colour, whilst the vinegar gives darker blues though it all changes when dry anyway. left about another hour.

So I keep popping down the shed every 45 mins or so gently re applying in sequence and randomly dotting, vinegar and salt, then soy and salt. re sealed the airtight container and left again.

Now we are starting to get somewhere, about 4 hours of playing. this is starting to look beautiful, copper and gold. But i still want more blue so it’s being left again.

More photo’s to come, this is not finished yet!


It’s still not quite finished but here’s where we are this morning.

3 coats of lacquer, but I’m not happy with the surface - I left a couple of bits of salt in it.

I’m gonna 1200 grit it down then re apply lacquer and then it’ll be done - until then here’s what it looks like today!

I don’t wanna blow my own horn - but sometimes you have to lol (I deserve it, it took a LOT of time and effort to get that patina lol) - but it looks AMAZING!

I’ll take some better photo’s for the end part .

Well it’s all finished now… 10 layers of lacquer and rubbing down in between every 2 layers and it’s just about right I think. Funny, it appears a rough surface, but in fact is ultra smooth lol.
Don’t forget to click on all the photo’s to see full size, and to get max resolution you have to click the ‘load full resolution’ or is will appear blurry.

Awesome to see you join G0OSE :beer: I’m lovin’ the look of that switch :heart_eyes:

Good luck on the build G0OSE :wink:

Great to see you join in G0OSE :+1:

:+1: Happy to see you join in

Thank you guys :+1: Did quite a bit more last night (and a bit more lathe work). The tailcap is all soldered together now, I stole one of the threads from a nipple after drilling out and inserted it into my brass tube, soldered it in and now we have a tailcap and a body……. which screw together lol!
As soon as that glass lens comes I can start the front head assembly. Worst case scenario I have a plastic one which I’d rather not use. I also have an optic which may fit…
Made a 2nd pill slightly shorter than the other last night too.
I am tempted to make 2 heads and maybe split the body to allow 1 or 2 cell use, it will mean more careful nipple drilling :person_facepalming: there is literally next to no wall thickness left after drilling those 1/4” nipples to 10.5mm, one tiny move off centre and you lose the bottom of some thread.

Nothing like a good plan. :slight_smile:
All the best for the build G0OSE.

Looking good . I just had an unfortunate experience with thin walls , so go slow :wink:

So it’s nearing completion………see all the photo’s in the 2nd post….
what’s that smell? Ammonia?..……………… :smiling_imp:

Very nice shiny build, I love al those reflections :heart_eyes:

(what is that with the ammonia?)

Patina :smiley:

Holy mackerel! You’ve been leading us on saying you have ‘limited skill’ and ‘budget build’…. this is awesome!

Thanks pp! I might just go and ruin it now in the ammonia tank :smiling_imp: worst case scenario I rub it all off and repolish.
Those cheap ass lights really pack a punch for $2.50! It surprised me how powerful it is for a 2x aaa.

Group buy!!! :open_mouth:

Great work G0OSE! That looks terrific :laughing:

Yeah that came out nice ! :+1:

It’s not quite done yet, this is just where I am at the moment. Just to be clear- the one below isn’t mine lol, it’s what I’m trying to do.
I have some off cuts of bras in an ammonia tank with salt on sealed up overnight to see how it pans out.
I’m gonna o a few tests before I jump on the main event and do the main light. I am going for something like this maybe… and I may put some glow elements on before lacquering if I go that route.

Even more interesting

If you manage to fixate that patina, it will be very nice!