Instructables
Picture of Uber-Light 1000
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Intro:

This Instructable is for a high power flashlight that uses a CREE XM-L LED and is powered by 3 D-cell batteries.  Most of the parts are fabricated using a 3D printer and due to the size/shape, it is broken down into several segments.  The wiring for this flashlight is very simple.  It composes of the 3 batteries in series, connected straight to the LED via a rocker switch.  There are no resistors in series due to the fact that there is enough resistance from the batteries (alkaline), wires, and switch.. and because the CREE XM-Ls are beastly LEDs.  Granted, this is a very inefficient way to power these LEDs for various reasons, but it does work and is really bright... battery life might just be a bit lacking... and the light output may be a bit inconsistent from beginning to end of battery life.  The middle segment of the body is sized to be the length of a D-cell battery so one can add extra segments to make it a 4+ battery light.  This will of course require different wiring/electronics... not covered in this Instructable.


Instructable Contents:
  • 1:  Tools, Materials & Parts
  • 2:  Print UL1000 Components
  • 3:  Prepare LED module
  • 4:  Assemble flashlight head (heat sink/LED module)
  • 5:  Prepare positive circuit wiring
  • 6:  Assemble flashlight body
  • 7:  Prepare/install end cap
  • 8:  Appendix A: Extra information

 
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Step 1: Tools, Materials & Parts

Picture of Tools, Materials & Parts
Suggested Tools:
  • 3D Printer
  • Soldering Iron
  • Heat gun
  • Electric drill w/ 5/32" drill bit
  • M6-1.00 tap
  • 8-32 tap
  • 5mm Allen wrench
  • Phillips head screwdriver
  • Wire Strippers
  • Pocket knife
  • Emery cloth or sandpaper
  • Small frying pan/skillet
  • Tweezers

Suggested Materials/Parts:
  • ABS printer filament
  • Flux core wire solder
  • Solder paste
  • Heat sink compound
  • JB weld (or JB-Kwik if you are impatient like me)
  • 14" of black 20ga stranded copper wire
  • 8" of red 20ga stranded copper wire
  • 2 - 1/4" x 1" lengths heat shrink
  • 2 - female terminal ends (spade)
  • Small zip tie
  • Cree Xlamp XM-L LED (Mouser PN: 941-XMLAWT0000LT50E3)
  • LED thermal substrate (Mouser PN: 951-804936)
  • LED lens (Mouser PN: 928-FA11902T3WXM)
  • Radial heat sink (Mouser PN: 588-SA-LED-151E)
  • D-cell positive battery contact (Mouser PN: 534-5250)
  • D-cell negative battery contact (Mouser PN: 534-5251)
  • Oval rocker switch (equivalent to R13-133)
  • 1 - 8-32 x 1/2" machine screw (Phillips head)
  • 8 - M6-1.00x12mm socket head cap screws
  • 3 - D-cell batteries

Step 2: Print UL1000 Components

Picture of Print UL1000 Components
The first step to building the Uber-light 1000 is to print or at least start printing all the components.  I used OpenSCAD to draft the parts and attached both my .stl files and .scad files so you can easily make changes/revisions.  You can print the parts in any order you like, but I recommend following the order below so you can work on other steps while the larger components are printing.  The 3D printer I am using is a Prusa Mendel with a standard non-heated bed topped with masking tape.  I used my standard typical settings and only activate/deactivated the feature "raft"  (http://wiki.bitsfrombytes.com/index.php/Skeinforge_Raft).  For each of the components I list whether or not I used "raft" and the reasons.  Naturally, different printing configurations may require different settings.


Tools/Materials needed:
  • 3D Printer
  • Printer filament

1. Lens Bushing


Raft: No
Reason: Not needed/wasteful

2. LED Cap


Raft: No
Reason: Sometimes the raft will peel off the first couple of layers in the print.. This piece has fairly strict tolerances (don't want LED lens to be too loose or too tight).. so I leave the raft off.  Sometimes the ends curl up, but they push back flat when fastening to the heat sink.

3. Body Head Segment


Raft: Yes
Reason: It reduces warping of the bottom of the piece (where it connects to heat sink)

4. Body Mid Segment


Raft: Yes
Reason: Reduces the "mushrooming" of the bottom of the print.  Without raft, you are likely to have a ridge at the mid segment to end segment splice.

5. Body End Segment


Raft: Yes
Reason: Reduces the "mushrooming" of the bottom of the print.  Without raft, you are likely to have a ridge at the end segment to end cap splice.

6. End Cap


Raft: No
Reason: The raft is not easy to peel off of this part, resulting in an awkward layer at the very end of the light.  It is much smoother and easier without raft.

Step 3: Prepare LED module

Picture of Prepare LED module
This step involves mounting the LED module and power wires to the thermal substrate.  There is a correct way to perform reflow soldering... and I am pretty sure the following is NOT it.  Therefore, I highly recommend doing alternate research as these components are the most fragile and most expensive parts of the flashlight.  The following does seem to work for me, so if you are feeling brave, proceed at your own risk... You could also probably buy pre-mounted LEDs... but that may require modifying the Lens Bushing/LED Cap..


Tools/Materials Needed:
  • Soldering iron
  • Wire Strippers
  • Flux cored solder
  • Soldering paste
  • Small frying pan/skillet
  • Tweezers
  • Cree Xlamp XM-L LED (Mouser PN: 941-XMLAWT0000LT50E3)
  • LED thermal substrate (Mouser PN: 951-804936)
  • 14" of black 20ga stranded copper wire
  • 8" of red 20ga stranded copper wire
  • 3 - D-cell batteries

Step 1:  Strip/tin 1/4" of one end of each wire


Step 2:  Apply solder to one of the positive and one of the negative pads on the thermal substrate.  Keep in mind that this is a heat sink, so it takes a long time heat up.  Also, the solder doesn't have to be pretty, as it will remelt when doing the reflow soldering.


Step 3:  Apply a small amount of solder paste to the LED pads on the thermal substrate.


Step 4:  Place LED on thermal substrate.  Be sure to orient the LED correctly.  It is hard to see but there is a little "+" in one of the corners of the LED.  Refer to Appendix A of this instructable for the LED datasheet.


Step 5:  Turn on stove to medium heat and place thermal pad in frying pan/skillet.  Watch closely and remove thermal pad when the solder paste melts. Depending on what types of solder/solder paste you use, you may be able to use the melting of the regular solder as an indication that the solder paste is about to melt.  


Step 6:  Solder wires to thermal pad.


Step 7:  Test assembly using 3 D-cell batteries laid out in series.  If it doesn't work... you just received a $10 education... and try again.


Step 4: Assemble flashlight head (heat sink/LED module)

Picture of Assemble flashlight head (heat sink/LED module)
In this step, you will mount LED module to the heat sink.  


Tools/Materials Needed:
  • LED module from previous step
  • Printed LED Cap
  • Printed Lens Bushing
  • M6-1.00 tap
  • 5mm Allen wrench
  • Pocket knife
  • Emery cloth or sandpaper
  • Heat sink compound
  • Small zip tie
  • 4 - M6-1.00x12mm socket head cap screws
  • LED lens (Mouser PN: 928-FA11902T3WXM)
  • Wire Strippers

Step 1:  Using M6x1/00 tap, tap the 4 large perimeter holes on the heat sink at both ends (8 taps) about 1/2" deep.


Step 2:  Using pocket knife and/or sandpaper, clean up the LED Cap and the Lens Bushing.  The idea is to have the Lens Bushing fit flush (or close to flush) inside the LED Cap.


Step 3:  Find the LED lens.  Notice that the lens will not fit on the thermal substrate due to the soldered on wires and 2 little nubs on the bottom of the lens.


Step 4:  Pick out the inner optic part of the lens and set it aside.


Step 5:  Using the wire strippers (or similar tool), cut off the interfering areas.  This will leave you with 2 half moon shaped pieces of LED lens case.  


Step 6:  Place the 2 lens case pieces on the thermal substrate around the LED using the attached adhesive.  Make sure you place the pieces such that the lens optic will fit cleanly in place.


Step 7:  Apply thermal compound to the center of one side of the heat sink.


Step 8:  Place LED module on heat sink lining up the wires with opposite center holes.


Step 9:  Place lens optic over LED in the hacked up case pieces.


Step 10:  Place Lens Bushing over LED lens.


Step 11:  Place LED Cap over Lens Bushing and install the 4 M6 mounting screws.


Step 12:  Pull the wires tight into their respective holes and secure them together with the small zip tie.

 

Step 5: Prepare positive circuit wiring

Picture of Prepare positive circuit wiring
In this step, you will prepare the positive circuit wiring to be attached to the rocker switch as well as install the battery positive contact.


Tools/Materials Needed:
  • LED/heat sink assembly from previous step
  • Printed body head segment
  • Soldering Iron
  • Flux core wire solder
  • Heat gun
  • Pocket knife
  • Emery cloth or sandpaper
  • Wire Strippers
  • JB Weld
  • 2 - 1/4" x 1" lengths heat shrink
  • 2 - female terminal ends (spade)
  • D-cell positive battery contact (Mouser PN: 534-5250)
  • 1 - D-cell battery (for fitting)

Step 1:  Using the pocket knife and sandpaper, clean up the body head segment.  The important thing is to have it so a D-cell battery will slide easily all the way to the lip inside the battery tube.


Step 2:  Cut off about 1" of red wire from the LED/heat sink assembly.  Solder one end to the positive battery contact.  Crimp or solder one of the female terminals to the other end.  Install heat shrink on the terminal end.


Step 3:  Trim the red (positive) wire from the LED/heat sink assembly so that about 1.5" is sticking out beyond the heat sink.  Solder/heat shrink the remaining female terminal to this wire.


Step 4:  Bend over the positive battery terminal tab and insert it into the battery tube resting it on the attachment bridge.  Push the D-cell battery into place and make sure it rests firmly on the battery contact.  The battery should be close, but not contact the lip on the inside of the battery tube.  Remove the battery and contact from the housing.  Apply JB Weld to the bottom of the contact and place it back on the bridge, centering the contact nipple in the battery tube.
 
 

Step 6: Assemble flashlight body

Picture of Assemble flashlight body
In this step you will assemble the body of the flashlight.  


Tools/Materials Needed:
  • LED/heat sink assembly
  • Printed body head segment
  • Printed body mid segment
  • Printed body end segment
  • Pocket knife
  • Emery cloth or sandpaper
  • 5mm Allen wrench
  • 4 - M6-1.00x12mm socket head cap screws
  • JB Weld
  • 1 - D-cell battery (for fitting)
  • Oval rocker switch (equivalent to R13-133)

Step 1:  Using pocket knife and/or sandpaper, clean up the printed pieces.  Make sure that the batteries will slide smoothly in the battery tube and that the body segment splices are nice and tight.


Step 2:  Apply JB Weld to the splice surfaces between the body head segment and body mid segment.


Step 3:  Fit the segments together and apply pressure until JB Weld sets up.  Clean out any JB Weld that finds it's way to the inside of the battery tube as well as on the outside of the splice.  Be careful not to plug the negative battery wire duct.


Step 4:  Repeat Step 3 for the body middle to body end segment splice.


Step 5:  Attach the positive battery contact to the rocker switch "supply" terminal through the rocker switch nut and mounting hole.


Step 6:  Push rocker switch into place and tighten the rocker switch mounting nut.


Step 7:  Attach the female terminal from the LED/heat sink assembly to the "load" terminal on the rocker switch.  Also feed the black negative battery wire through its duct and out the back end of the flashlight body.


Step 8:  Attach the LED/heat sink assembly to the body using the four M6 cap screws.  Be careful torquing down the screws.  If the mounting surface on the body head isn't fairly flat, you will more than likely delaminate the corners of the body head.  
 

Step 7: Prepare/install end cap

Picture of Prepare/install end cap
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This is the final construction step of the Uber-Light 1000.  In it, you will finish up the wiring and assemble/install the end cap.


Tools/Materials Needed:
  • Flashlight assembly from previous step
  • Printed end cap
  • Soldering Iron
  • Electric drill w/ 5/32" drill bit
  • 8-32 tap
  • Phillips head screwdriver
  • Wire Strippers
  • Pocket knife
  • Emery cloth or sandpaper
  • Flux core wire solder
  • JB Weld
  • D-cell negative battery contact (Mouser PN: 534-5251)
  • 1 - 8-32 x 1/2" machine screw (Phillips head)
  • 3 - D-cell batteries

Step 1:  Using the pocket knife and sandpaper, clean up the end cap and flashlight body as needed for proper fit.


Step 2:  Drill out the mounting hole on the end cap using the printed in pilot as a guide.


Step 3:  Trim the negative battery wire so that it is sticking out of the flashlight body about 1" when pulled tight.  Strip and tin about 1/2" of the wire sticking out.


Step 4:  Solder the negative battery wire to the tab of the negative battery contact, keeping it as flat as possible.


Step 5:  Tap out the end cap mounting hole in the flashlight body using an 8-32 tap.


Step 6:  Double check that the end cap fits cleanly on the housing with the negative battery contact and batteries installed.  If so, JB Weld the negative contact to the end cap.


Final Step:  Fill the Uber-Light with batteries, screw on the end cap and illuminate the world.


 

 

Step 8: Appendix A: Extra information

This page is not really needed for the instructable, but it might have some information that could be useful or interesting.


Design considerations:
  • The middle body segment is the length of a D-cell battery so you can easily increase battery capacity.
  • On the light shown in this instructable, I used glow in the dark filament for the LED cap/lens bushing and the end cap so the flashlight can be located in the dark.
  • The egg shape of the handle not only provides room for the negative battery wire, but also provides a "directional" grip, so your thumb lines up the the rocker switch.
  • The rocker switch used has an internal light, but it won't work with 4.5 volts. This style of switch does come in a not lighted version, but I couldn't find one to buy online. I just consider the internal light to be an "on" label.
  • The lens bushing is separate from the LED cap because I wanted a positive lip to hold the lens in place.  This would have been hard to do with the 3D printer, since they don't like printing unsupported 90 degree overhangs.  They are much better at doing gradual overhangs, especially conical ones... like used in the bushing and cap.

Random Tips:
  • Use an intermediate plate for your 3D printer bed. I use a thin piece of polycarbonate (lexan). This way, it can be removed and the surface tape is easier to replace. Also, you can flex it to remove stuck on prints that are really stubborn. 
                     
  • In OpenSCAD, if you are drafting curved surfaces, create a global variable "fn" i.e "fn = 20;". Then in all your curved shapes, set $fn = fn. i.e. "cylinder (h = 5, r = 3.25, $fn = fn);" This way, you can easily set all the the $fn values to a low number (like 20) while adjusting your object, and to a higher number (like 100) when you do your final compile and render. This will save you TONS of time during the construction of your object, since compiling and rendering an object with a high $fn takes forever and a day.

My Exact Printing Setup:  Since it is harder than you might expect to put together a compatible setup for running a Prusa Mendel, I am listing my setup below... this is more for someone who is setting up their Prusa for the first time or who is thinking of building one.
  • Linear SAE Prusa Mendel
  • Wade's Extruder w/Makergear hot end pack w/0.5mm nozzle
  • Arduino MEGA 2560 w/ RAMPS 1.4
  • Repetier Firmware Version 0.43, uploaded w/Arduino Version 0023
  • Repetier Host Software Version 0.33
  • Skeinforge 41 slicing software
  • OpenSCAD 2011.06 cad software
  • Python version 2.7.2
  • Jave JRE Version 5.0
  • Windows 7 operating system

My Prepend G-codes:
  • G28;  Homes all the axis.
  • G92 E0;  Resets the extruder steps.  Without this, the extruder will spin rapidly in reverse at the beginning of the print.

My Append G-codes:
  • M104 S0 ; turn off temperature
  • G28 X0 ; home X axis
  • G28 Y0 ; home Y axis
  • M84 ; disable motors
 

jockkitto162 years ago
this is a fantastically made instructable! i would make this torch in a flash (pun intended) if i could afford the 3d printer.

very well done!
randone2 years ago
I am wondering if you have to have such a massive heat sink, or a heat sink at all. I have had other electronics that have never even got warm. Do LED lights get hot when they are this powerful?
macskyver (author)  randone2 years ago
They do get warm, and output decreases as they heat up.. (check datasheet for details).
I agree, that's the biggest problem with LEDs
keegancdr2 years ago
hey so where did you purchase the electronics? im having a little trouble finding the LED and the thermal substrate
macskyver (author)  keegancdr2 years ago
Sorry, I should have been more clear about that... I got most of the parts from http://www.mouser.com/... you should be able to find them easily with the listed part numbers (but let me know if you don't).. Someone also found pre-mounted LEDs on thermal substrates on ebay for about $10, although mounting them is half the fun and excitement...

The trickiest part for me to find was the rocker switch. You can find them on Mouser.com if you search for "R13-133" (and get the datasheet) but you have to buy them in multiples of like 1000 from them... Although not labeled the same, I found the same switches on Amazon.com:

http://www.amazon.com/JT-Products-2703-2J-Illuminated-Rocker/dp/B002UZW77C/ref=sr_1_9?ie=UTF8&qid=1330992687&sr=8-9

I think I also found them on http://www.parts-express.com.. but I ended up ordering from Amazon because I love amazon prime. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to find the plain unlighted versions, but I know they exist..
FightCube2 years ago
I was wondering about the lumen output of this LED, so I'll post what the spec says here:

The XLamp XM-L LED is the
industry’s highest performance,
single-die white lighting-class LED.
The XLamp XM-L is 20% more
efficient than the XLamp XP-G at
the same current, and can deliver
1000 lumens with 100 lumens per
watt efficacy.

Even if you only achieve half of that, 500 lumens is insanely bright.

Have you looked at the forward voltage and current on an oscilloscope with a fresh set of batteries? I wonder if the peak current and voltage exceeds the recommended spec max of 3000mA and 3.35V?
macskyver (author)  FightCube2 years ago
With relatively fresh batteries, I measured the current with my multimeter and got 2.7 Amps... Using the datasheet as a guide.. that should mean the voltage is about 3.3V... and outputs about 780 lumens... and yes, it is bright...
LesB2 years ago
How about lithium batteries? They would last longer and make the led brighter. Only question is whether they would power the leds too much and smoke them.
zkus2 years ago
Awesome. Has a nice, badass look with the giant heatsync.

I was wondering though, why not resistors? Wouldn't that increase the batter life (with i've gathered to be a little poor). Maybe a pot to make the brightness adjustable?
macskyver (author)  zkus2 years ago
Thanks.

I didn't use resistors because I wanted it to be as bright as possible with no regard for battery life or consistency.. and because it was simple and easy..
Mike Nelson2 years ago
What run-time do you get from the D cells?

@Demonic69 - i just got 3 of these LED's in the mail with some 18650's... I normally make headlamps, but a flashlight version would be fun too.
macskyver (author)  Mike Nelson2 years ago
I haven't tested the run-time yet... I did just test the current draw and got 2.7 Amps... which I am sure is absolutely horrible on a D-cell battery. That is outside any of the charts in the battery datasheets I have... I am pretty sure the run-time would be measured in minutes instead of hours...
ac-dc macskyver2 years ago
With alkaline cells you will get what is known as voltage depression if it was left running, the cell voltage dropping continously would cause less and less current through the LEDs so you would probably still get at least a few hours of runtime because it is a direct drive design, but it won't be very bright the majority of the runtime.

BTW, you had mentioned in the instructable that this isn't very efficient. It is actually the MOST efficient way to drive an LED since there is no power conversion loss, but with the downside being if you had used a lesser LED it might damage it, and the voltage depression issue mentioned above + voltage/current relationship so it won't be consistent brightness.
jolshefsky2 years ago
Re your "if you are impatient like me" comment on JB-Kwik, in my experience, JB-Kwik is the go-to epoxy, and JB-Weld is "JB-Slow" if I happen to have a need for hours of set-up time. It's peculiar naming on their part.

Also, JB epoxies claims to be a good thermal conductor, so if you want to attach something to a heat sink, JB epoxies are a good option instead of thermal paste and screws.
macskyver (author)  jolshefsky2 years ago
I didn't know that about JB Weld being a good thermal conductor... That is good to know, thanks.. I swear, that stuff is magical.. Another random use is as a filler putty (like bondo) for things that get powder coated..
Actually, epoxy in general is a decent thermal conductor, in the 0.3-1 W/MK range, as compared to air at ~0.025 (but still way less than copper at 400), and is usually an electrical insulator. Its commonly used to pot electronics. JB Weld is about average of the lot, but for something as powerful as an XM-L, you would probably want to spend the extra for Artic Alumina. Its similar, and made by the same people that make the more well-known CPU thermal paste "Arctic Silver", but is an electrical insulating 2-part epoxy designed for high thermal flux (ie: gluing hot stuff to heat sinks), so gets better than 1W/MK. It uses ceramics instead of silver to maintain its electrical insulative property. There are quite a few threads on this over in the candlepower forums (people that do this kinda thing often, and in even more excess).

Things to watch for: keep the application of it thin as possible as the stuff its gluing together has a MUCH higher conductance, and its expensive so excess is just waste. The thinner it is, the less resistance from the stuff regardless of its coefficient. Also, once set, this is an epoxy, so it will not move, make sure you put the parts together correctly!
ac-dc tmack02 years ago
Epoxy in general is not a decent thermal conductor, nor is JBWeld. There are certain epoxy formulations highly fortified with things like metal or ceramic particles that do a fair job. The only way some people get away with using epoxy is that it's an extremely thin layer applied.

Thermal conduction is not a matter to be taken lightly. Never substitute an epoxy not specifically designed for high thermal conduction if at all possible. Otherwise there is excessive heat and or excessively large/heavy/expensive heatsink needed to compensate for the wrong thermal interface material.

Also potting electronics is not the primary thermal path for anything specified to need heatsinking (just wanted to clarify this in case anyone got the wrong idea).

Lastly, JBWeld cures to a granular brittle structure, it is not the right formulation for anything with a different coefficient of expansion or subject to possible impact like a flashlight that might be dropped.

I agree Arctic Adhesive is a good choice, or for larger area applications it is more economical to buy a tube of one of the various brands sold for use on peltiers.
Just out of curiosity, does the JB brand list the thermal properties of their adhesives anyway?
It would be good to compare them to a dedicated product like Arctic Silver adhesive, or even double-sided thermal tape.
Kinnishian2 years ago
I feel like a lot of people may have commented already...If the majority of resistance is coming from the internal resistance of the alkalines, that's chill, butt...... I think alkaline batteries really aren't very good at supplying current as compared to their total capacity.

The test would be...if the battery lasts for 1-2 hours at good operation, then you're not abusing it *too* much (0.5-1 "c"), but if it lasts for only <1 hour, then you'll be getting a lot less capacity out of the battery than you could otherwise.
macskyver (author)  Kinnishian2 years ago
Yeah, I agree... looking at a duracell alkaline battery datasheet, you can see that on the "Service hours vs. power drain" graph... functionally speaking, the battery choice is fairly poor... I chose D-cells because they are more common and they do work (although not extremely well) in this application. I have a bunch of 18650s heading my way, so I will modify this light to be a bit more usable...
rmoore282 years ago
I think your design is very cool especially with the glow in the dark ends. Would you please write me at rwm24kau@yahoo.com and let me throw a couple of ideas at you? Richard
clazman2 years ago
Very nice!

I would only suggest a small change.

To use BHCS's to replace the SHCS's on the business end. They'd present a much cleaner look.

Again, very nice job!
macskyver (author)  clazman2 years ago
I agree... a button head cap screw would be cleaner.. good idea.. thanks.
bhouston2 years ago
Is your 3D printer homemade? If so, do you have an instructable for it?
cc67 bhouston2 years ago
I saw an instructable that can answer you problem
http://www.instructables.com/id/Build-a-Laser-3D-Printer-Stereolithography-at-Ho/
check that out... maybe that can answer you
macskyver (author)  bhouston2 years ago
My printer is homemade, but unfortunately I don't have an instructable for it.. Fortunately though.. there is tons of information on the printer I built. There are already really good step by step instructions. This link will get you started.. (mine is the Prusa Mendel)

http://reprap.org/wiki/RepRap

I am thinking of making a scaled up CNC router version of the Prusa Mendel, in which case, there will most likely be an instructable for it..
this is cool. I've done some maglite mods and such but this is just an awesome idea. i love the heatsink. it must be able to take a lot of heat. it would be cool to do a sealed light that was rechargeable and to have a small fan inside.
macskyver (author)  snowluck23452 years ago
Thanks. Yeah, the heat sink is pretty massive... and probably bigger than it needs to be.. I don't like running it continuously, because it is harsh on the batteries... so I haven't really tested to see how hot it gets... but there are shorter (and longer) versions of it with the same bolt pattern so people can modify to their heart's content if needed...

It sounds like version 2 will definitely be rechargeable (with 18650s) and water resistant.. A fan would be kinda pointless on a sealed design, but it could be a cool mod for the open design.
yeah, i've been working on a few flashlights and i just confused them when speaking. I was thinking a simple body for one with a fan with a grate and a computer style heatsink and i've designed a sealed light based with heat pipes through it. I'm thinking about how i'll make it and i'm thinking 3d printing, making a plaster mold of it, and casting it in aluminum.
Demonic692 years ago
Very, very cool!
I wonder how much work it would take to make this waterproof?
If you need a tester for a WP version I'll happily volunteer to try it out at 30m or so :D
Would also be great to see it running on 18650 cells, at 3.7v each I reckon you could get a good runtime!
If i ever get my hands on a 3d printer I'll definitely give this a go, brilliant work.
macskyver (author)  Demonic692 years ago
Thanks... I don't think it would be too difficult to make this water resistant.. It would probably take the following:

- Sealing plate between heat sink and body head
- O-ring between end segment and end cap
- Silicon around the toggle switch.. and most likely a different switch type
- Silicon/hot glue around the LED/thermal substrate

I like the idea of using 18650 cells... I'll do some thinking on that and get back to you... Also, if you want to design/draft a waterproof mod or 18650 cell mod (preferably in OpenSCAD)... I'll print a body for you. Just make sure to provide room for some control circuitry...