Need help again - how to disassemble this AA light?


Sorry all, but another in my series of “how do I disassemble?” questions.

This time, it’s this cheap AA light from Ebay:\_trksid=p2059210.m2749.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

I bought this because I had bought one that looked similar awhile ago, that I was able to disassemble easily, and which had 3 parts (head, battery tube, and tail), but this one is different. It’s just got a one piece head/tube, and the tailcap, and I just have not been able to get the lens/reflector/pill (if there is a pill) out, even with taking a 1/2 pipe and trying to hammer it from the front.

Here’re some pics:

From the side:


Looking into the tube from the tail end:

And the front:

I’ve also tried taking tweezers and pushing them into two indentations in the contact board and twisting, but it won’t budge.

I’m starting to think that the only way I’m going to get this apart is to maybe break the contact board in half and then pull the pieces out of the back of the tube?

Any ideas?


My similar lights are all press fit through the front. Just whack a dowel or something down the battery tube and everything may pop out the front with the lens.

Do you mean pound something from the back of the tube, towards the front? I’ll try that. I didn’t have anything that would fit into the tube, so I’d only tried the other way around so far, like I said using a 1/2” copper tube pounded from the front towards the back. Will post back.

All of mine like that were glued in. I had to get a punch and knock it out the bottom. I broke the lens in the process, but it was plastic so it really didn’t matter.

Good Luck

Hbomb et al,

Pounding a dowel from the battery end worked, and the lens popped out the front.

Here’s a pic of what I found:

Looking from the front, the I.D. of the tube is larger at the front, and there’s an unanodized ledge. The ground ring of the driver contacts that ledge for the negative.

And, this is what the “driver” looks like:

So, I modded it:

Here’s the new “pill” - a piece of 1/2” copper tubing from HD, with a driver from my junk box soldered to one end, and some XM-L something on Noctigon:

I shoved the pill, the reflector and the lens back into the front:


The driver works with either 1xAA or 1x14500. On 14500, it’s pulling ~1 amp at the tailcap, which is probably enough for this little light, and the light starts getting warm rather quickly.

EDIT: I forgot to mention that the reflector originally had a kind of “neck” to fit the original tophat style emitter, so I filed that down a bit. You can see it in the pic above. I didn’t have to enlarge the hole, but I probably could’ve filed the neck down even more.

Looking at it with a magnifying glass before I pounded it out, it did look like there might’ve been a spot ot clear glue on one spot of the lens, but if it was glue, thankfully, it was not very good glue :)!!

Nicely done :slight_smile:

The mod. looks like some of my SS-5039s. Good work, in my opinion. The original driver looks like that of an SS-5049. If it uses a single 1.4 V cell, the thing that looks like a resistor must be a coil, as I am told it is in the 5049, some sort of Jewel Thief. Looks like you also shortened the reflector for focus, as I do.

The original driver was horrible… some kind of joke I think. Not only was it one mode (can be good sometimes), but it was really weak, so it just had to go.

Yes, I did have to shorten the neck of the reflector, because the original strawhat emitter was taller, and since I put in an XM-L, it was shorter.

You have to give the engineer credit for coming up with a two component driver (as far as I can see). But the manufacturers that put in more expensive active components are not necessarily the same ones that are most artistic with numerically controlled machine tools. The production costs for flashlight heads, tails and battery tubes are low enough that the skill and personality of the designer are more important than how long it takes on the lathe.

What driver did you end up using?

You might find this funny, but I used the driver that I removed from one of the lights in this thread that I made into a quad:

I liked the original driver in that light ( because I had originally had 2 of these, and on one of them, I just replaced the emitter with an XM-L2 and put heavier emitter cables, and found that it was pretty bright (and about 1.8 amps tailcap with a 14500, if I remember). The other nice thing about that driver is that it works with either 1xAA or 1x14500.

So it’s been a kind of a “driver merry-go-round” :)!!

Looks like there isn’t any copper under your LED board = No effective heatsink. :quest:

Yes, you’re correct. This was just a “quickie” mod, mainly to get this light done, because it had been “staring” at me for awhile while I was trying to figure out how to open it :)!

Nice mod. Those types of reflectors are actually pretty nice. The plastic lens just makes them look bad and robs light.

It would be nice to replace that plastic lens with glass. You could probably make a retaining ring with that same copper coupling material. Just would need to expand it a tad. Enough to make it fit tight enough to hold everything in place, but not so tight you can't push out everything back out later. The copper would look cool if done right. Something that has been on my extended to do list.

EDIT: you have plenty of heat sinking under the emitter for the current you are running. You could have just used an aluminum star if you wished.


Thanks for the hints :)! For the copper retaining ring suggestion, do you mean on the outside of the lens to hold things in? So the retaining ring would be press-fit from the front (bezel end) of the light?

The 1/2” pipe fits inside the tube on this light, so probably a 1/2” copper coupler (you know, from HD) might be made to fit as a tight press-fit if you sanded it down a little? Hmmm….

I have another one of these and might try something like that.

A thick star helps a lot with a hollow pill. When I want better heat sinking I bend a smaller copper tube a bit so it fits inside and solder it. I haven’t yet taken the trouble to fill the spaces with copper wire. Another thing I might do is to stack a few spare aluminum stars with the insulator filed off the front.

Yes, you are correct. On the outside of the lens to hold it in.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure how to make it. I was thinking maybe pound the slice of 1/2" pipe from the inside with a rod or cylinder or something. That should make it increase in diameter, I think. Maybe a wire formed into a ring with the ends soldered together. It's something I haven't tried to make yet.

I wish you the best of luck if you. I certainly will be copying your method if you pull it off.

EDIT: Clarified wording and fixed typo.