Lumintop FW1A discussion and review

Chabuduo, dammit.

A while ago, I ordered a 1A warm and was sent a 1A cool blue-white.

I guess I will keep it, it appears to be the earlier model.

I’ve found that the Convoy S21 reflector is a acceptable fit for the FW1A. I converted a 3A to a 1A a few weeks ago and the conversion was not difficult, but finding a suitable reflector was!

My solution was to place a copper spacer of approximately 3mm between the shelf of the FW3A and the MCPCB, this left the perfect amount of space for an S21 reflector after its outside bottom rib had been turned off to allow it to fit inside the head.

I do not believe that it has as much throw as the stock reflector, but it makes a fantastic beam with a LH351.

I did this same thing last year sometime. I made my own bezel out of 7075 Al and turned the reflector down, removing the bottom rib (or two?) and putting a clean taper on down to the emitter hole for good wire clearance. I then started sanding the lip of the FW3A head (at the bezel threads) to achieve maximum focus and keep the Al-Al contact, but went too far :person_facepalming:. Now I use a centering ring and there’s a small gap between the reflector and head and consequently the bezel…

I’m running a sliced SST20 4k and am generally pleased. Output is pretty low but beam is great, albeit a narrow hotspot. Been looking to put a sliced 3500K LH351D in for a while to get a broader beam, just never got around to making a digikey order.

I’m going to try and source a SMO reflector from the new S21B and see how that looks next. I’m currently getting 16kcd@1m (measured at 5m). Very clean beam and minimal angular tint shift. Only the slightest corona.

Wow, that is much more ambitious than my project. I considered taking some material off of the FW1A bezel instead of building a spacer, but the bezel I purchased is stainless and I didn’t want to have to work with anything that hard. I don’t mind having a little extra mass for the thermal capacity anyway.

The smooth S21 reflector is what I’m using. It makes a great beam with a domed LH351, I had considered dedoming, but I was happy with the throw so I left it alone. I did dedome a 2700k Samsung in my Thrunite T10 Ti and I’m really happy with that one, it got a little pinker and gained a bit of throw.

Today I had some time and tried getting the stock reflector closer to the board; it removed some artifacts but the throw still is not what it should be for a reflector this size. I also tried installing a slightly bigger LED (219B sw40), which works better with the original spacer but of course the throw is even worse. Frustrating.

One thing I noticed was the MCPCB is super thick, like the one in the FW3T. So if I find a slightly longer reflector I might be able to get it to fit with a normal 20 mm MCPCB.

The FW1A is a very attractive light. Something I don’t understand that I hope someone can answer.

Researching the SST-20 variety I don’t see any output tests, but advertises a maximum output of ~700Lm on their sales page. According to maulka’s SST-20 output tests, the only data I can divine is ~700Lm is ~2.5V.

I understand the step downs with FW3A. But why does FW1A light step down so fast at a maximum of 700Lm? Why can’t it sustain 700Lm with a decent 18650 cell for at least a few minutes, if not half an hour? What am I missing! Thank you.

Because it’s still 3 amps in a similarly sized light?

The SST-20 4000K version is the least efficient, so it generates the most heat and makes the fewest lumens. Try the XP-L HI 5000K or 6500K version if you want a higher sustainable lumen level.

Is it really 3A? I thought it was between 2A & 3A. But ok, say 3A. On a 2100mAh VTC4, that should give about 40mins of runtime. What is the problem that it needs to step down?

Heat could be the problem.

Er, yes. That is what I was saying.

The reason it can’t stay at brighter levels for a long time is because of heat.

I was merely acknowledging, not intending to be redundant. It didn’t occur to me that at 700Lm, heat could be the problem, but I see that you must be right. Thank you for stifling my outrage and confusion and with a quickness.

D’oh. Communication is fun, no?

Anyway, er, I have a FW3A with SST-20… and it makes much less light than my other FW3A models. It’s impressively inefficient, especially after I gave it a minus-green filter to make it look less puke-colored. I really should put different LEDs inside, since I like the rest of the light… but I keep SST-20 in it to remind myself why I avoid those.

It is the price to pay for high CRI. Besides SST-20, are there any other high CRI emitters that are as bright or brighter? Besides halogen and HID, I mean.

I just ordered a FW1A w/ SST-20, 18350 tube & cells from Ilumn. Being broke, I begged, borrowed and stole to do it. I somehow missed all the hysteria, only just discovered it today.

Despite the low overall output, high-CRI SST-20s tend to match low-CRI XP-L HIs for throw in regulated drivers with the same optics (though it’s my understanding Lumintop is/was using a lower flux bin than most, probably because that was easier to find with nice tint). In some applications, that might be a… suboptimal choice as the resulting light is imbalanced for general use, but this light has a separate flood emitter.

It’s my understanding the launch version is finalized, but SST-20/LH351D both in 4000K would be an excellent combination here.

I think this reply might be referring to a different light than the title FW1A? I’m curious which light you’re talking about though. I would love a dual-LED headlamp w/SST-20 4000k in a deep OP reflector and LH351D 4000k with a TIR. Great idea!

My FW1A SST-20 4000K arrived a couple hours ago with some new cells from Illumn.

First, the bad. No lube on threads. Been meaning to get to a Ford dealer for some Motorcraft XG-12, but all I have handy is Vaseline. Tiny pieces of white crud on reflector, was able to extricate all but one with vigorous tapping. I don’t have a can of air, guess I’ll need some of that, too. Some kind of sticky crud stuck to the host on the bezel and across the button and tail cap. I was able to rub most of it off, but at first I thought it was a tool mark scratched right across the button and the bottom of cap. I am relieved, oddly, that it was only sticky crud. My button does not click like I heard Mr. Matt Smith demonstrate generously in the first seconds of his FW3A video, but maybe that is just my imagination, and it is louder on the video due to what what frequencies his mic is most sensitive.

All in all, the bad is not indictable.

The good. Beautiful host. Excellent design. Cool features. Bright. In late afternoon, it appears 3-4 times brighter than my SC5c II, which means to me it must be 9-12 times brighter than 475Lm. The 15 second step down on max I was concerned about… I only watched for 30 seconds, but I see no step down. I’ll check longer in time, but I am relieved it is not a timed step down, but probably sensitive to temperature, as ToyKeeper indicated. So cooler ambient temperatures will delay step down, and
Winter Is Coming®︎

I am keeping this. I sincerely thank you, Fritz and ToyKeeper, and, of course, Lumintop. Nicely done.

L351D is much more efficient and has a significantly higher max output (~1200-1400lm) on the 90+ CRI models, but has a much larger die and is therefore significantly floodier than the SST-20.

People see lux, not lumens. The FW1A has a relatively large reflector with a relatively small LED, so it’s likely to have much higher lux at the same lumen levels, which makes it appear brighter with a smaller hotspot.

About the step-down, it’s gradual and usually not visible by eye. It requires a lux meter to really see the output adjustments.

I have somehow gotten into something on my FW1A that I can’t get out of, an interface mode group that won’t let me check battery or put in lock out mode, and ramps one way on press and the opposite on press again.When ramping up. light will cycle from brightest immediately to lowest, then as expected low to high, then cycling again from highest directly to lowest, and up again.I have tried both factory reset methods several times. Help.

6 clicks from OFF gets you out of “muggle” mode assuming that is the problem.