Inside the NEXTORCH factory!

Here is a video from when I visited NEXTORCH on 9 April 2024:

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Its hard to believe their factory is so clean and so well run.

It looks more like a factory that makes computer chips.

Do they really make the lights one at a time by hand?

I dont even think the Surefire factory looks like that.

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I’d say that it’s a combination of automation, manual work, and being well organised.

They make the individual parts in the CNC and lathe area, send some parts away (e.g. reflectors to polish, or tubes to anodise), perform quality checks when they receive the parts back, and then supply those to the clean assembly areas.

The Surface Mount Technology room automatically fed PCBs into the pick and place machine, added components, moved them through a reflow oven and has an automated optical checks. Half a dozen people were doing manual electronic checks.

NEXTORCH setup their assembly lines for the TA20 and WL50 so that the tail and head are assembled at each end and the final flashlight is put together in the middle.

The TA30C had a similar assembly line but in the shape of a semicircle with one person. Custom machines helped improve the efficiency.

I was given the opportunity to assemble my own TA30C but it was pretty obvious that the workers are highly skilled. I only attempted inserting a reflector, lens and bezel.

There were more production lines that I didn’t film because the products haven’t been released.

They’re a part of a bigger group where NexTool is a sister company. I think the management is good at operating factories at scale. They’re building more. :eyes:

The video makes me interested to buy one to compare to other lights I have.

I’d recommend the TA30C.

The TA20 is a bit small and UI odd for tactical use.

TA30C Max battery goes in backwards and is a tad big.

Does it still use an unregulated driver? I remember that the output dropped when the battery voltage decreased.

Yeah. That’s something that could be improved. The output drops. It’s kind of regulated.

Why do they do this? Is it considered safer?

I’m sure that NEXTORCH consider the safety when determining what to do with High modes. I asked if they could turn the TA30C into a short 18350 sized light simply by reducing the tube length but they need to consider the heat dissipation that is lost by reducing the length of the tube and how they might impact the user.

The output might need to be reduced when making the tube shorter. This is probably a good thing anyway because the capacity of a 18350 is lower compared to an 18650 and a lower output would help increase the runtime duration. But I digress…

I would guess that it helps improve the runtime length for Low and Medium while trying to maximise the initial output. Users want longer a runtime duration.

For example:
The Amutorch XT35 tries to have a higher sustained output for Medium but it only lasts 2 hours at 600+ lumens. The TA30C slowly drops from 300+ lumens down to 0 lumens by ~5 hours 30 minutes.

The Acebeam Defender P16 has a well regulated and an efficient driver. High isn’t much better compared to Medium on XT35.

Medium on the P16 is pretty good. It sustains 200+ lumens for 6 hours. It would be nice if the TA30C could sustain 200 lumens for 6 hours on Medium instead of slowly drop from 300 lumens.

I prefer the overall look and feel of the TA30C with the two-step tail switch compared to the P16 with two buttons. It’s easier to use.

The P16 has a slightly more intense hot spot.

Thanks for posting the video TimMc!

It looks like an amazing factory and you were lucky to be able to help assemble a flashlight. :+1:

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