Hello everyone! I am new here but am slowly becoming a flashlight addict.
I got an HS10 4000k around Christmas time, and shortly after, it had some issues with flickering, and then eventually the LED burnt out. It now emits a deep blue color. Weird.
Sofirn was awesome, and sent me a replacement headlamp (without the 16340 battery) very quickly.
Now I am wondering if it’s worth trying to install a new LED into the light, as I do love the light and I can never have too many small flashlights around the house/truck/bag etc.
I do have a small bit of experience with electrical engineering, and am decent with a soldering iron. I don’t have a hot air gun, or some other tools necessary for the endeavour (I think a watch case opener is needed?) . I like fixing and making things, and I figured this would be an opportunity to experiment on a light with nothing to lose.
What do y’all think?
It’s already been replaced, so what do you have to lose?
It looks like the HS10 can be opened with snap ring pliers or need nose pliers. But you might be able to just press the bezel against something rubber and turn it that way.
Once you get to the emitter it’s just desoldering a couple wires and reflowing a new emitter. If you can find a way to heat the mcpcb from the bottom you can do it. Even a pan on the stove will work.
It’s a samsung LH351D emitter, so any other 3V 3535 sized emitter will work. The new hotness is the Nichia 519A.
Unusual for an LED in a stock light to burn out- maybe they assembled it badly and the thermal path from the LED to the body wasn’t good?
Anyhow, if it’s the LED, then, repair is possible.
Link here where someone swapped their LED in their HS10. Not really covered is ‘reflowing’ where you get the LED soldered to the board, there’s loads of threads on this and a bunch of YouTube videos. I’ve had good success recently holding the led board over a tealight candle with a pair of tweezers.
Might want to clean and reapply the thermal paste under the led board before you reassemble.
One of the biggest challenges I find, is holding the wires from the driver to the LED down in order to solder them to the board.
Edit to add: +1 on the Nichia 519a and also, welcome to BLF!
Once you get the LED on it’s board (MCPCB, Metal Core Printed circuit board), out of the light, you need to get the old led off and the new one on. Most say to clean the old solder off the board before putting the new one on. So you will also need some solder paste for the new LED.
Heating can be done in many ways. A heat plate is probably the easiest, but you can use darn near anything to heat the board (like the candle mentioned above). They key is to not get that new LED too hot when installing it. The first one I ever did, I just used my soldering iron underneath the board. It took a while, but I got it done and it worked.
Here is my favorite video on the subject:
It may cost you more in parts and supplies than it would to buy a new HS10. But I think it is worth doing, if nothing else, for the satisfaction derived. Also, once you do one, you will be set for doing it in the future.
imo yes, it is a very rewarding skill to be able to change LEDs…
here are some HS10 pics, including how to get the bezel off
here is a modding pictorial for a different light, but the concepts are the same, and the tools and supplies are shown…
here is a list of modding tools and supplies, including an inexpensive hotplate for reflowing LEDs
The stock lh351d in HS10 was very green to begin with. I think the head and driver is glued but the led is relatively easy to swap because Sofirn took the extra effort into machining some of the parts to be serviceable.
You might be confused by the photo of the SP10 Pro.
The HS10 bezel is not glued, and it is easy to remove the mcpcb, there is no glue…