SkyRay worth my time?

First post, I’ve been hit with the flashlight bug, the wife thinks I’m crazy but has yet to tell me to stop (fingers crossed).

So, this was my first 18650 light, I mean I had to have one, I had all these 18650’s from drill batteries just laying around. (it definitely wasn’t the last light either)

$19 light from amazon, wondering if there is any free\cheap mods i can do to the stock internals? or should i order new stuff? leave it alone?

I would send it back. Fake LEDs, no emitter shelf/hollow head.

I figured it would be junkey when I bought it, it actually works ok and is “kinda” bright. figure if anything ill use it as a lantern as it has 4x18650’s and will have decent run times.

Am I really loosing out that bad for $19?

As far as that particular one goes, there’s not much you can do that’s easy. To beef those up takes a fair amount of with involving driver replacement, possible led replacement and even metalwork to aid in cooling. Depending on your skill level, you may find this is a good host to do some serious mod work to. If you don’t have much experience with this kind of stuff, just let it be and it will probably be a decent enough light to get by. Especially since it was only $20.

Oh, by the way, Welcome to BLF!

In your first picture, do you see that big squiggly line in the bottom left? That’s there to purposefully limit your driver. You could get more output by bypassing. Just be careful you don’t pop your leds

Yours looks better than the 7 led skyray king I bought 3 years ago for 38$

My driver was sticky taped to a thin metal “heatsink”.

But for a first light, you are following in the footsteps of many of us.

If it gets to hot “like mine did” you can put cooling paste on the heatsink.

But now that you have seen what 19$ buys, try saving a bit more and you’ll have so much more joy.

Try Nitecore, it is the brand that I love so much.

Sure you’ll pay way more, but there are groupbuys on this forum that are really worth it.

Welcome to the forum and embrace your new addiction :smiley:

For the price it is not a rip off, you are getting a good amount of lumens for the price. It is also not a great deal either.

The real issue is cooling, it is hard for the LED’s to get the heat to the body. Some thermal paste along the lip helps.

Shameless plug - I have some drivers for sale that would take care of the driver issues along with a better UI. They also include thermal management although without a shelf it will not be all that useful.

I am fairly skilled in soldering/hobbies type stuff. I have many other lights now (s2Baton, EC4S, C8S, and a S41 and S2+ on the way) figured I’d ask about this one as I rarely use it not that it is “sub par” haha. Thanks for the info so far guys!

Been looking at drivers on mountain but unsure of what to do about LED’s as I don’t want to flow 7 my first try AND it’s an aluminum PCB anyway.

I’ll give it a shot. Thank you.

Welcome to BLF

I reflowed 4 in a similar light with XML2 NW
I put the shelf on the smaller of our gas stove with a small piece of solder I cut on the board.
When that became fluid I removed the LEDs with tweezers.
There was a fair amount of solder left on the pads and when I had +/- figured out placed the good LEDs and again used the gas stove for heating. They set themselves and this was so much easier then soldering wires

If it is within the Amazon return policy, yes, at least imo.

I would use the $19 and save some more to pick up a Supfire M6. Then you would have a light built like a tank, better in every aspect. You can also tinker a bit with the M6 to increase output and not have to worry about unknown quality LEDs, heatsinking, bad threads, etc.

I bought exactly (I guess) this light a couple of months ago and didn’t expect much from it, just wanted to own one of the “famous” SRKs. Here are the first mods and measurements I did with this light recently:

- before modding about 1800 lumens with Keeppower protected cells,

- added some thermal paste between MCPCB and the “shelf”-ring,

- brigded the printed resistor which Pilotdog68 mentioned and got about 2700 lumens,

- doubled the wires to LED-MCPCB and got about 2800 lumens,

  • bypassed the springs and added some solder beef to the tail PCB and finally got about 3200 lumens out of the fake XM-Ls.

Of course the light get’s hot fast and the tint is not the best, but this light has potential. Up to now this mod didn’t cost anything (apart from the solder paste).

Meanwhile I ordered genuine Cree XM-L2 LEDs and I am trying to get a fitting copper-disk. I will substitute the driver with a FET+1.

I guess there are some more lumens waiting for me …

Perfect light for Nichia 219b swap… if somehow possible.

I’ll give some of these a try. Thank you!

I don’t believe the Nichia 219 fit on a XM-L PCB.

Good idea!

Correct, I happened to get a 7x SRK that came with “XP-L” Clones. I am gonna put some high CRI LED’s in it, just have not decided between the 219 or XP-G3.

I might even go with a mixed tint high CRI build, thinking some 3000k and 5700k 90+ CRI leds.

Very nice idea. However the 4000k nichia covers most of the spectrum. Check out this Adding Deep Red Leds for improved CRI and R9 the only missing part is the red and cyan spectrum.
I had an idea for same light of this sort with 2 red ~700nm leds, four nichia 4000k and one cyan. But it is a really complex build. :frowning:

Yeah, the 219’s are great as is, although I think I would go with XP-G3’s if I went mixed tint. I have always wanted to try a mixed tint light.

In theory by mixing tints it gives it a bit of a high dynamic range picture, is still is a picture, just more of it, hard to explain any other way. At least that what I have read about them.

Hpg3 has high cri also.

But are very rare. And very small number of places carry them.