Think I fried a driver, need mod help.

Tried to upload pictures unsuccessfully. Just got this light and played around with it for maybe a minute. Noticed the led centering device was not really doing anything because of the large opening in the reflector(led end). Took out centering device to see how much brighter it would be and I think I shorted out the driver. The light will come on but has very low output, like moonlight mode. Driver seems to measure about 22mm. Tried screwing it out with needle nose pliers and then prying it out with a small screwdriver, can’t get it out. The pill screws into the reflector, the reflector screws into the host so it should do good at heat management. Anyway, how do I get the driver out and what is a good driver to use. This will be my first attempt at modding.

2x 18650 batteries, x-ml led

Is this a good solder station, Hobby King 936 ?

Pictures a few posts down and a link to the light.

Asks me to sign into flicker and then says the photos are private.

Try a different site, like ?

Thanks devman, I fixed that.

I can say that is a good soldering station, I can't see the pictures so I can't recommend on a way to fix it though.:(

Sorry about the image size, I don’t know what I’m doing. Removed the nonworking links. Thanks devman and scaru.

I assumed you put the plastic led centering stator back and tried it again? Or Try a piece of paper with the center cut out to cover the solder points of the lead wires. The reflector may still be shorting out.

I tried putting the centering the device back in, still not working. I believe the reflector touched both wires and shorted out when screwed down, will work at a moonlight mode.

For clarification, you tried turning the light on with the reflector removed and you still get the moonlight output, right?


like any fun project, you need three hands

one to pull on the spring, a second to pry the driver out from the hole on one side, and the third to pry at the hole on the other side :slight_smile:

With the light completely assembled with and without the centering device, moonlight only. There is no way to run it without the reflector, pill screws into reflector, reflector screws into host. Have to use the reflector to hold the pill in place.

So do you think it’s a press fit, do you think it’s glued in place?

Ah ok, oops - didn't think about that.


Looks like a press fit. Try prying it open with a mini flat head screwdriver.

In this case if it’s an odd sized driver (>17mm diameter), I would either desolder (or use a heatgun) all the parts off the driver and use it as a contact plate and buy a 17mm driver. Otherwise you can buy a 20-21-22mm contact plate. They’re cheap. Int Outdoor or Fancyflashlights (CNQG) carries them.

To get you started. To check if you actually fried your LED or driver, you can connect the battery using some lead wires directly onto the LED contact points to see if your LED is in fact fried. If it works, then it’s your driver. Just don’t blind yourself in the process. I don’t know how many time I’ve done that. LOL

Tied powering the led with leads directly to a battery. The led is still in moonlight mode, must be the led or led and driver, while I’m at it I will still upgrade the driver also since this light looks like it is heat sinked good.

That is the cheapest soldering station I’ve seen. Tho shipping doubles the cost. To really know if its could be passable quality (safety wise) need to find someone who has done (or willing to do) a teardown, assess its design &/or take pictures so others can assess it.

A lot of cheap noname chinese AC electronics are made with horrible disregard for safety, laws & fire codes.

Can you measure the driver? Is the light 1 or 2 18650?It looks like 2 * 18650, if that’s the case and the driver is 19-20mm, this is a real nice driver.

I’ve just fitted it to a host, and it’ll definitely be on the cards for any multi-cell xm-l builds I do.

Fasttech has some larger diameter drivers available; if you find the right diameter, you may be able to find a decent driver there.

24mm driver, 2.4A for 2x Li-Ion cells, listed as no mode memory though:

21mm driver - 2.8A for 2x Li-Ion cells, specs say no memory but I haven't been able to confirm that yet on mine:

I haven’t seen a glued one (but they’re probably out there).

Some are soldered in place, but it doesn’t look like yours is.

I HAVE had some that are pressed in place so well that I broke the board getting them out. I didn’t care since I wanted to get rid of strobe anyway…

if you find yourself using a lot of force, you might want to unsolder the leads from the emitter. some times tugging on them will pull the traces off the star.

I have an AOYUE 936 soldering station. great for soldering leads and adding chips to drivers. I paid $35 shipped from US ebay seller.\_trksid=p3872.m570.l1313&\_nkw=AOYUE+936&\_sacat=0&\_from=R40

PilotPTK recommended that Hobby King soldering station and that was enough fo me to order! Haven't used mine yet. They carry it in the US Warehouse so that's a plus!

Sometimes drivers are soldered in the inside (solder joint inside the pill where you can't see it) like on the Trustfire F20.