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  1. #1
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    DIY Cree triple, done right!

    I finally have all of the parts together for my new Cree XR-E triple handlebar light. I designed the housing from scratch and had the parts CNC machined at work. It was designed to use all readily available components (I got most of mine from Cutter). It will use 3 Q5 bin XR-E LEDs, a Bflex driver, and some 3mm LEDs and a waterproof switch from Digikey. Optics will be 20mm Carclo, probably 2 20 deg. and one 10 deg. First pictures are below, and I will update as the build progresses.

    Mark
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  2. #2
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    Now that you've got that program for the sweet housing, wanna run a few more? Nice job, I'd like to be first in line!
    Just another nighthawk at the diner

    Rock -n-roll means well but it can't help tellin' young boys lies...

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobW
    Now that you've got that program for the sweet housing, wanna run a few more? Nice job, I'd like to be first in line!
    Do you really think I went through the trouble of setting up the machine and only making one ! I did run a few sets of the housings, but they will most likely be going to my riding friends and 24 hour team partners!

    I do have one question concerning run times. I did a quick calculation to determine how long the battery will last, can someone please comment if I did it correctly:

    Battery is 14.8v 2.6 Ah, which comes to 38.48 watt hours

    The LEDs will be run at 700mA, and according to Cree will draw 3.5 V at 700mA.

    That makes 3.5 * 0.7 = 2.45 watts * 3 = 7.35 watts for 3 LEDs.

    38.48 / 7.35 = 5.24 hours run time on high

    Mark

  4. #4
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    sweet

    i wanna be second

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikeny
    Do you really think I went through the trouble of setting up the machine and only making one ! I did run a few sets of the housings, but they will most likely be going to my riding friends and 24 hour team partners!

    I do have one question concerning run times. I did a quick calculation to determine how long the battery will last, can someone please comment if I did it correctly:

    Battery is 14.8v 2.6 Ah, which comes to 38.48 watt hours

    The LEDs will be run at 700mA, and according to Cree will draw 3.5 V at 700mA.

    That makes 3.5 * 0.7 = 2.45 watts * 3 = 7.35 watts for 3 LEDs.

    38.48 / 7.35 = 5.24 hours run time on high

    Mark
    In a most ideal condition, it looks correct. That's assuming a full charge, no cabling or heat or controller (buck) overhead losses, a linear discharge curve, discharge rate losses, warm climate, etc.etc.

    Just figure on around 5 hours.

    That's going to be one blindingly handsome unit, there......nice job. Keep us posted.

  6. #6
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    very nicely done. very professional looking on the finish.

    sooo are ya making more?

  7. #7
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    Nice work Mark!

    Have you thought about machining a few fins in to that beauty to save a bit more weight? I guess it would be pretty lightweight as it is anyway.

    I’m interested in how you’ll mount these lights too, it looks like you’re going to use two mounts?

    Keep up the great work, and be sure to keep us posted!

    Dave.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikeny
    Do you really think I went through the trouble of setting up the machine and only making one ! I did run a few sets of the housings, but they will most likely be going to my riding friends and 24 hour team partners!

    Mark
    But you wouldn't mind sharing the drawings or CNC code?

  9. #9
    fuggansonofahowa
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    Quote Originally Posted by Low_Rider
    Nice work Mark!

    Have you thought about machining a few fins in to that beauty to save a bit more weight? I guess it would be pretty lightweight as it is anyway.

    .................

    Dave.
    That's a good idea - it would help with heat dissipation with the added surface area also.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hawseman
    That's a good idea - it would help with heat dissipation with the added surface area also.
    He's got a fair bit of surface area so it will be quite alright as it is. It certainly wouldn't hurt just for a little extra style.

    Dave.

  11. #11
    fuggansonofahowa
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    Quote Originally Posted by Low_Rider
    He's got a fair bit of surface area so it will be quite alright as it is. It certainly wouldn't hurt just for a little extra style.

    Dave.
    ahhhhh....but if the added density of the casting cannot shed the heat through it's outer surface area, that case could become an insulator of heat. Typical electronic heatsinks aren't just blocks of aluminum (or copper). They have fins on the outside for greater surface area which equals greater heat dissipation. The ambient air pulls the heat from the fins, the fins pull the heat from the sink, the sink pulls the heat from the component. When the surface cannot shed the heat, the heat stays put. I haven't worked with these LED's yet, but to take a lesson from electronics 101....heat = bad. Most failures are due to heat related issues. It's not just the LEDs, but the controller (bFlex/Buck Puck/etc.) that may be affected too.

    As compared to achesalot's...the surface area to density ratio is much less. (The bling score is very much higher, though). When it gets warm, it'll stay that way for some time.

    Honestly, I don't think this will be a problem here, especially at 700mA. IMHO, the more we push these puppies, the more this heat issue will need to be dealt with.

  12. #12
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    Very nice! Keep us posted with details and updates.

  13. #13
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    Next update

    Thanks for all of the friendly comments! I have done a little work the last couple of days and have almost all of the wiring done. First of all, I should have made the back part of the housing a little longer! It was quite a job to get all of the wiring stuffed in that tiny cavity! The biggest problem was strain relieving the cable so that it doesn't pull out of the housing. Anyway, as you can see from the first picture, the Bflex is wired up and mounted inside the housing. The second picture shows the cable, switch and 2 LEDs. There is a green LED that will always be illuminated when the battery is plugged in, and the red LED is the low battery warning. Last picture shows the optics siliconed into the front half of the housing. 20 deg. optics on the outside and a 10 deg. in the middle will be my first try. Now I just need to mount the XR-Es with some Arctic Alumina and assemble the 2 halves, hopefully later today. Also, to help with the thermal transfer between surfaces, I have sanded all of the mating surfaces on a granite plate with very fine sandpaper to ensure good contact, and the Arctic Alumina will be used on all mating surfaces, including between the front and back halves of the housing.

    As far as everyones comments about adding more surface area, I agree, more would be better. But I think I have enough to keep the unit cool while riding, and the fact that they will be run at 700 mA for now. I am already thinking about the next revision!

    Mark
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  14. #14
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    WOW! That's nice! I can't wait to see it on the bike.

    Great work!

  15. #15
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    Very nice, bikeny....expert workmanship.

    I really don't think that heat will be an issue for you @ 700mA.....keep truckin'.

  16. #16
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    Nice!

    Can't wait to get my order in. (LOL)

    Had a few ?'s.

    How many lumens do you think it'll put out? Is there any reason you didn't use the Seoul's and drive them at 1000mA w/ a 4Ah battery or even 2.7Ah AA batteries.

    I'm just now trying to understand LED's and how they run so sorry if the ?'s are lame.

    MB

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by mb323323
    Nice!

    Can't wait to get my order in. (LOL)

    Had a few ?'s.

    How many lumens do you think it'll put out? Is there any reason you didn't use the Seoul's and drive them at 1000mA w/ a 4Ah battery or even 2.7Ah AA batteries.

    I'm just now trying to understand LED's and how they run so sorry if the ?'s are lame.

    MB
    Here are my reasons for my choices: For the LEDs the Q5 bin Crees are brighter and more efficient than the best Seoul LEDs available. BTW, the Crees can also be driven at 1000mA safely, but I opted for 700mA right now in order run them more efficiently and have a longer lasting light.

    Approximate lumen output will be as follows: The Q% bin LEDs put out between 107 and 114 lumens at 350mA. Multiply that number by 170% for the output at 700mA = 181.9 to 193.8. So for 3 LEDs that comes to 546 to 581 lumens. If you take into account the lense, get something like 500 to 550 lumens.

    As for the battery, my 2600 Ah 14.8V battery will last about 5 hours on high, which is plenty for my needs!

    I hope that answered your questions!

    Mark

  18. #18
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    I have one more question for anyone who can help: I am looking for a good way to mount my 4 cell Lithium battery to the bottom of my stem. Maybe like some kind of padded velcro bag that can be strapped to the stem? I think that would clean up the whole mounting arrangement. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Mark

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikeny
    I have one more question for anyone who can help: I am looking for a good way to mount my 4 cell Lithium battery to the bottom of my stem. Maybe like some kind of padded velcro bag that can be strapped to the stem? I think that would clean up the whole mounting arrangement. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Mark
    Cool light.

    I use this for my Edge battery pack on longer events: http://www.polardiscount.com/scripts...uct=110&src=fr

    I mount it upside down on my stem, as opposed to right-side up on my top tube, to keep it away from my knees. There will be extra room. I pack a small piece of foam and a couple of emergency gels in it to keep things from sloshing about.

  20. #20
    Light freak
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    Here is one that might work for you.

    Nightpro battery bag

  21. #21
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    Small camera or phone bags work well too.

  22. #22
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    All done!

    OK, the light is all done. There are a couple more pictures below of the completed unit on and off and also mounted to the bike. Thanks for the suggestions for a way to mount the battery, they gave me some good ideas. I ended up buying a very small saddle bag from my LBS and stuffing the battery into it. My plan is to mount it under the stem, which I will try tonight to make sure it works. I hope to give it an actual trail test tonight or tomorrow, and then it will get a thorough test this weekend at the 24 Hours of Allamuchy(I do have a backup HID just in case)!

    Mark
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  23. #23
    Ride 2 Work, Work 2 Ride!
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    Sooo cool!
    "Don't give up, Never give up!"

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikeny
    I have one more question for anyone who can help: I am looking for a good way to mount my 4 cell Lithium battery to the bottom of my stem. Maybe like some kind of padded velcro bag that can be strapped to the stem? I think that would clean up the whole mounting arrangement. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Mark
    Have a look at AYUPs mounts and batteries. Hell, if you could get this to work with the same battery the AYUPs use, you could have a winner, as they're cheap as hell and last ages (oh, and they weigh 70 grams). However, from memory the pouches are made for AYUP whereas the batteries are purchased.

    Their mounting system is also really good and lightweight - just uses cable ties.

  25. #25
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    Looks good.

    Personally they take up too much space on the bars with the wide profile.

  26. #26
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    Excellent light desing!!!!!!! congratulations At the end we will do best lights than the professional firms

    Greetings - Saludos

    msxtr
    Warning!!! my english is very very bad, sorry.

    Easy DIY led light1
    Easy DIY led light2

    The Beast!!!

  27. #27
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    How did the light work out? This looks similar to what I would like to build. Thanks!

  28. #28
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    I used the new Ay Ups tonight and their bar mount is an excellent piece of work. i used the bar mount to fit on my helmet as well due to the shape of it and it works great with my Limar helmet.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by ekoostick
    How did the light work out? This looks similar to what I would like to build. Thanks!
    The lights worked out great, Thanks! I used them for my first 24 hour solo event, the 24 Hours of Allamuchy in NJ a few weeks ago. We had thunderstorms overnight that dumped inches of rain, so I can definately say that they are fully waterproof! My 2:30 night laps were no problem as far as run time, and the beam was excellent. The rain left the course an absolute mess (think peanut butter), so there was a lot of walking involved. You know its bad when you have to pedal going downhill just keep moving! The high/low beam switch was easy to use and I never turned the light off accidentally. I also used a homemade Souel P4 single LED light run at 1000ma on my helmet, which also worked great. Although I had to run it at low or turn it off at times because of the fog.

    Overall, I am VERY happy with the light and will be keeping it for a while. I would like to get the housing anodized to help corrosion resistance, and I will certainly be watching for higher bin LEDs in the future, but I am very happy right now. Now I have to build a few more for my friends, and then maybe I will sell a few housings to cover my expenses!

    Mark

  30. #30
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    Wow that is impressive job with the machining. Really quite job!. Hope you chose a nice grade of Al for the anodizing.

    Curious about the optics though. From what I see on the market you need some sort of collimation lens in there. Just wondering what you had in mind or else all those photons are going out uncollimated.

  31. #31
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    Amazing work, bikeny. Truly outstanding.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikeny
    The lights worked out great, Thanks! I used them for my first 24 hour solo event, the 24 Hours of Allamuchy in NJ a few weeks ago. We had thunderstorms overnight that dumped inches of rain, so I can definately say that they are fully waterproof! My 2:30 night laps were no problem as far as run time, and the beam was excellent. The rain left the course an absolute mess (think peanut butter), so there was a lot of walking involved. You know its bad when you have to pedal going downhill just keep moving! The high/low beam switch was easy to use and I never turned the light off accidentally. I also used a homemade Souel P4 single LED light run at 1000ma on my helmet, which also worked great. Although I had to run it at low or turn it off at times because of the fog.

    Overall, I am VERY happy with the light and will be keeping it for a while. I would like to get the housing anodized to help corrosion resistance, and I will certainly be watching for higher bin LEDs in the future, but I am very happy right now. Now I have to build a few more for my friends, and then maybe I will sell a few housings to cover my expenses!

    Mark
    When you're ready to sell, please let me know.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Talkingbelly
    When you're ready to sell, please let me know.

    +1 for sure!!

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oxygen
    Wow that is impressive job with the machining. Really quite job!. Hope you chose a nice grade of Al for the anodizing.

    Curious about the optics though. From what I see on the market you need some sort of collimation lens in there. Just wondering what you had in mind or else all those photons are going out uncollimated.
    I am not quite sure what the difference between a collimated and a non-collimated lense is, but I am using the Carclo optics for the Cree XR-E series:

    http://www.cutter.com.au/proddetail....=cut689&cat=33 and
    http://www.cutter.com.au/proddetail....=cut690&cat=33

    I am just using them without the holders and siliconing them into the front half of the housing.

    Mark

  35. #35
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    Anyone who expressed interest in the housing, please check your PM.

    Mark

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikeny
    Anyone who expressed interest in the housing, please check your PM.

    Mark
    I'd be interested in the housing! PM me if you still have some/prices, thank you.

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikeny
    Anyone who expressed interest in the housing, please check your PM.

    Mark
    Mark i am interesting also!
    I live at Athens,Greece if this is not a problem then please let me know a price!
    Thank you very much
    Dimitris

  38. #38
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    hi - i am also interested in the housing

    thanks

    Alex

  39. #39
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    I'd like to know more about is as well...
    Last edited by brum; 09-23-2007 at 12:53 PM.

  40. #40
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    Only one thing to note. In your lifetime calculations you did not calculate for how many W it cost to run the electronics. They have current drain as well.

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by brum
    I'd like to more about is as well...
    Me too...

  42. #42
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    one more

    I am also interested in a housing.
    I live in belgium by the way...
    Thank you!!

  43. #43
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    I'm interested enough to ask for more info, but I'm of afraid the answer...
    "Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one." - Albert Einstein

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikeny
    Anyone who expressed interest in the housing, please check your PM.

    Mark
    Mark,

    Add me to the list.

    Seriously, I think if you can come up with the coin to cover it, you should do a setup and make a run of 100 of those units. I'm sure they'll all sell. You could probably kit them complete as light kits with cree triples, lenses with batteries, bar and helmet mounts with how to assemble instructions and let folks make and assemble their own.

    Very nice craftsmanship!

  45. #45
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    Wow, a lot of interest in the housings here! I think maybe the price is scaring off some people, as I only have one confirmed person so far from everyone I gave the details to. Keep in mind that doing a small run of three seperate parts on a CNC isn't cheap!

    Anyway, there are a couple of things that I would like to change on the housing for easier assembly. So maybe what I should do is reduce the price for the ones I currently have and then make a larger run of a new improved version which would solve any issues I had with the first version.

    The general shape and assembly will be the same, but there are a couple of improvements I would like to make. First, I would like more room in the housing for the driver board and wiring. The current version is very tight and a little difficult to get everything in there, especially with the red and green LEDs on the back. I think I will try to add more surface area to the housing at the same time for better heat disipation.Also, I would get the parts black anodized right away.

    Feel free to make suggestions if you wish, and also what you think a reasonable cost would be to see if this is even financially feasable.

    Thanks for the interest, and I will keep everyone updated.

    Mark

  46. #46
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    Do you mind listing a rough price range for the housing? I am afraid that there may be more labor and other costs involved than most people realize. Would this be priced in the range of higher-end LED lights on the market, or would it be lower-cost as well? And a definite for black anodizing. I'll tell you what, I definitely WANT one, but as a first bike light for night riding, I hope its not going to cost more than is feasible.
    "Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one." - Albert Einstein

  47. #47
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    Unless you do a decent sized run, your set up costs are going to eat up any benefits for pricing, which most buyers are sensitive about . Product needs to be wallet and user friendly.

  48. #48
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    Frankly there isn't any item on the market that uses this design (secure double clamp, triple lights in a row, easily changeable lens, different light outputs and possibly strobe). The closest would be a Cateye Tripleshot pro, but it's output and options aren't even close.

    Then there's the price of uniqueness.. If you think of it as a custom built light, it might not be that expensive afterall. Just look at all the custom made flashlights in the candlepowerforums, I'm sure you'll agree that those aren't exactly cost effective too, but they sure are desireable...

  49. #49
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    More info:

    I figured if I was going to start giving more details here about selling the housings, I should take out an add to not piss off anyone! Add linked below that has all of the information:

    http://classifieds.mtbr.com/showprod...?product=11255

    Mark

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    I'm interested in the new version too.

  51. #51
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    Looks like the classified expired - are you still planning to make another run of these housings?

  52. #52
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    I wanted to buy one a while back and never received an answer to my PM/offer.


    Edit - bikeNY contacted me less than an hour after posting my earlier message - says he still has them available.
    Last edited by adrenalnjunky; 11-21-2007 at 02:22 PM.

  53. #53
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    I doubt I will be making another run of a newer design. I only sold one housing, so I still have a bunch of the originals around. And, my light has been working great, so I see no reason to change that! Also, unless I did a VERY big run of housings, the cost is still way more than most people are going to pay for them. For these first housings, I had 10 sets of parts made, and the parts cost for one housing set (3 separate parts) was about $125. I was trying to sell them for $75.00 a set and only sold 1! Now we know why the major manufacturers use either a cast aluminum housing, or a machined round housing, which would be much cheaper to make.

    Not that I am complaining about the price, as I did not design and make them to sell. I still really like the design and my light works great. If you look back through this thread at the number of people who showed interest in buying a housing, and the fact that only one person actually bought one, the numbers just don't justify making more, even if the design were improved.

    Maybe I should build up a few and sell them as complete units?

    Mark

    PS: adrenalnjunky, you have a PM

  54. #54
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    bikeny - did you actually pay for the machine time? Sometimes at work I can steal some time here n there for G-jobs so machine time is free.....And $75 for those 3 parts is a steal. period...I might take you up on that because making a light set could be fun...! What would the total cost run then ?
    CDT
    edit: check my profile for my list of pics. I did some machining myself....

  55. #55
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    Gota get me one

    aerospace grade. This thing rocks
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  56. #56
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    Looks great!

    Quote Originally Posted by AZ_Dave
    aerospace grade. This thing rocks
    That looks great Dave! I have not seen the anodized version built up yet, looks really nice. I may have to switch mine out now for an anodized version, but I really don't feel like taking mine apart and rewiring it! One of us should send one in for the LED light shootout and see how it compares. Enjoy the light.

    Mark

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    Have you driven any of the lights at 1000ma with that housing ?

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    I do and I have no heat problems unless sitting still for extended periods of time 10 - 15 min.

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    Ditto the above remark.

    tripe cree Q5 with a step down regulator. No heat issues. Also none when standing still.

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    I have only tried 750ma and had no problems, but it looks like there should be no problem as long as you are moving. I am just building up my new light with R2 bin LEDs, so I may have to try 1000ma to see just how bright it is!

    Mark

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    Would you be willing to sell these as complete units (without battery pack) with R2 bin LED's??? If so, how much $$???

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    I don't buy it. No heat problems? I'm not calling you liar but after a close look at your build I'm surprized. For one the IC that senses the temp is facing the wrong direction. It looks like it's sensing the coolest section of the housing. Secondly, there doesn't look to be equal heat dissapation for the leds in that design. Thirdly, it doesn't look like there is enough mass to remove all the heat. It is a sweet looking design and I'll say you deserve an A+ for your efforts and hard work, but I think alot of testing should go into it before you rake people for it. I've had builds run for months but run conditions where cold winters and controlled when indoors. I may yet have some fail once they are used on the hot summer nights. This technology is known for it's heat problems, which is why I don't think it has taken off in the housing market yet, and I have had my share of corrispondence with George at Taskled about some of my boards dying because of the long run times and heat. I'm not trying to throw a flame on your bling but I think a word of caution is in order until you can prove how and what testing has been done to insure people get what they pay for. All that said, I really hope this one works out for ya.

    A word to those buying homebrew lights, make sure you get a warranty or money back in writting before you throw hundreds of dollars into something that might end up being a paper weight.

  63. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by mofoki
    I don't buy it. No heat problems? I'm not calling you liar but after a close look at your build I'm surprized. For one the IC that senses the temp is facing the wrong direction. It looks like it's sensing the coolest section of the housing. Secondly, there doesn't look to be equal heat dissapation for the leds in that design. Thirdly, it doesn't look like there is enough mass to remove all the heat.
    Hey Mofoki,

    I think you may be misrepresenting some thermal principles. While i definitely think this isn't a production implementation of an LED bike like, i do think it is bad-ass and clearly (IMO) will do the job for the few DIYers who want something like this. This does look like a "riding is necessary for cooling" kind of light, though.

    Some thermal design clarifications:
    ~ You allude to there being significantly different temperatures on the housing. Assuming the front and back housings are hard bolted together, i'd be hard pressed to believe there is more than a 5*C difference anywhere on that body. Wrought aluminum is a fantastic conductor, especially how thick the sections are.
    ~ Regarding "equal heat dissipation" per LED - see the comment above. With how conductive aluminum is, all the stars are essentially bolted to an isothermal surface (all same temp).
    ~ Thermal mass doesn't remove heat. It simply stores heat energy and makes it take longer to get hot. Surface area, and convection removes the heat. If you had a very similar light that had 1/10 the aluminum, but looked exactly the same from the outside, it would get exactly as hot as the heavier one, just a bit more quickly.

    Anyway, just wanted to throw that out there.

  64. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by mofoki
    I don't buy it. No heat problems? I'm not calling you liar but after a close look at your build I'm surprized. For one the IC that senses the temp is facing the wrong direction. It looks like it's sensing the coolest section of the housing. Secondly, there doesn't look to be equal heat dissapation for the leds in that design. Thirdly, it doesn't look like there is enough mass to remove all the heat. It is a sweet looking design and I'll say you deserve an A+ for your efforts and hard work, but I think alot of testing should go into it before you rake people for it. I've had builds run for months but run conditions where cold winters and controlled when indoors. I may yet have some fail once they are used on the hot summer nights. This technology is known for it's heat problems, which is why I don't think it has taken off in the housing market yet, and I have had my share of corrispondence with George at Taskled about some of my boards dying because of the long run times and heat. I'm not trying to throw a flame on your bling but I think a word of caution is in order until you can prove how and what testing has been done to insure people get what they pay for. All that said, I really hope this one works out for ya.

    A word to those buying homebrew lights, make sure you get a warranty or money back in writting before you throw hundreds of dollars into something that might end up being a paper weight.
    Where the h**l did that come from??? Take a chill pill dude. Calling me a liar and telling me I am raking people for the housing, nice touch!

    First of all, I am not making any kind of commercial endeaver out of this. I had 10 housing machined to make it worth the cost, and sold 6 of them. There is no warrantly of any kind involved here. I think most people here understand that this is a homemade housing without countless hours of testing etc. That is also why the price was a bargain! Also, I am not selling complete lights here or even kits, just a housing.

    Second, as far as your thermal accusations, not sure what your problem is here either. First of all, I used a bFlex without a thermal sensor. You may be correct that the heat from the center LED is not pulled away as efficiently as the outside ones. I have not done any testing so I cannot say for sure. What I do know is there is PLENTY of mass on the housing to pull heat from the LEDs. The center LED mount is screwed to the housing and AA was used between the surfaces. The front and rear housing halves are also screwed together and AA was used on all mating surfaces. Also, every part was sanded flat on a granite block with very fine grain emory paper to ensure a smooth flat surface and good heat transfer. The entire housing gets universally warm when used, which tells me that the heat from the LEDs is being transferred to the housing efficiently. The amount of surface area is adaquete for this light. Would more be better? Absolutely! But that would have involved more expensive machining for limited benifit. Also, I am running my light at 700mA, and never recommended to anyone that they should use 1000mA. Also, I think it is common sense with these lights that when you are not riding, you should turn down the power!

    Again, I am not looking to make a fortune selling bike lights here. The light I wanted could bot be bought, so I designed and made my own instead. I sold some housings to make back some of the money I spent to make lights for myself a some of my freinds. And I even lost money on the housings I did sell! I sold them for $75.00 for the housing set, which I think was an extremely good price. I was not selling a turnkey light system here. The people who bought my housings were, I believe, tinkerers who wanted the finished product to look more professional than you basic Achselot design. Basically, for an extra $50.00 in material over the Achselot design, and much less labor, you get a MUCH better looking light. How it works is still up to how the owner puts it together.

    Maybe my light design is threatening your plans of taking over the LED bike lighting market ! Anyway, get a life and stop insulting people who are helping out others.

    Mark

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    Seems like Mofoki has issues with anyone that has machine shop access...

    bikeny your light is f'n sweet, no doubt! Definitely the nicest milled housing I've seen posted. $75 is a steal considering the intricacy of the design and the quality of the machine work. Keep it up man!
    Last edited by crisillo; 04-08-2008 at 12:57 AM.

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    I agree..

    A guy who takes the time to design and build a decent housing and then offer that design to the folks on this board is doing a very good service.

    He should be applauded for the creativity and energy that goes into the effort.

    Remember. YOU do not have to buy! That is a choice all of us can make. If somebody tried to pull a scam here the regulars on this board would toast him instantly.

    Keep up the good work.

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    I've bought one of Bikeny's light housings kits, and there is a problem (sorry mike).

    But the problem isn't with the heat dissipation, rather it's with the width of the clamps. I did not measure the width of my Thomson Elite stem and the holes he drilled for it were about 2mm narrower (he did made the design based on the width of his own stem though). I've discovered the hard way why thomson elite is one of the stiffest 25.4mm stem on the market, basically they overkill in the clamping zones.

    The Thomson X4 however is narrow enough for the light, but I do not have the oversized bike clamps from lumicycle. Purchasing and shipping those 2 little clamps aren't worth my time, so now I'm patiently awaiting my friend who is going to UK for holiday in a few weeks time to get me the oversized clamps.

    Just my honest opinion, Mike's light is extremely well designed. The LED stars can be simply bolted on with abit of thermal paste (allowing for easy future upgrades) and the machining is top notch. Everything fits tightly together like jigsaw. All that's missing now is the damned oversized clamps. Oh well, I guess I can survive on a 200L + 2 Fenix P2Ds for the time being.

  68. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikeny
    Where the h**l did that come from??? Take a chill pill dude. Calling me a liar and telling me I am raking people for the housing, nice touch!

    First of all, I am not making any kind of commercial endeaver out of this. I had 10 housing machined to make it worth the cost, and sold 6 of them. There is no warrantly of any kind involved here. I think most people here understand that this is a homemade housing without countless hours of testing etc. That is also why the price was a bargain! Also, I am not selling complete lights here or even kits, just a housing.

    Second, as far as your thermal accusations, not sure what your problem is here either. First of all, I used a bFlex without a thermal sensor. You may be correct that the heat from the center LED is not pulled away as efficiently as the outside ones. I have not done any testing so I cannot say for sure. What I do know is there is PLENTY of mass on the housing to pull heat from the LEDs. The center LED mount is screwed to the housing and AA was used between the surfaces. The front and rear housing halves are also screwed together and AA was used on all mating surfaces. Also, every part was sanded flat on a granite block with very fine grain emory paper to ensure a smooth flat surface and good heat transfer. The entire housing gets universally warm when used, which tells me that the heat from the LEDs is being transferred to the housing efficiently. The amount of surface area is adaquete for this light. Would more be better? Absolutely! But that would have involved more expensive machining for limited benifit. Also, I am running my light at 700mA, and never recommended to anyone that they should use 1000mA. Also, I think it is common sense with these lights that when you are not riding, you should turn down the power!

    Again, I am not looking to make a fortune selling bike lights here. The light I wanted could bot be bought, so I designed and made my own instead. I sold some housings to make back some of the money I spent to make lights for myself a some of my freinds. And I even lost money on the housings I did sell! I sold them for $75.00 for the housing set, which I think was an extremely good price. I was not selling a turnkey light system here. The people who bought my housings were, I believe, tinkerers who wanted the finished product to look more professional than you basic Achselot design. Basically, for an extra $50.00 in material over the Achselot design, and much less labor, you get a MUCH better looking light. How it works is still up to how the owner puts it together.

    Maybe my light design is threatening your plans of taking over the LED bike lighting market ! Anyway, get a life and stop insulting people who are helping out others.

    Mark
    I apologize. I haven't read through all the posts and I had no idea you were selling that housing that cheaply. The ones I did read led me to think it was some outlandish price like the high end manufactures are pricing their crap at, or like StefelKniev was trying to get out of a stupid bezel. Some people are really trying to capitalize off machining services. You're not selling those things complete huh? I didn't know that either. You're right about the way these should be operated ( not at 1000mAH) but you know everyone will do it. If they would run them at 500 or 750 milliamps there would be nothing to worry about but I've caught those I've sold light's to running them at max allready. Again, I'm sorry to offend, you sound like a fair guy.

  69. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by mofoki
    I apologize. I haven't read through all the posts and I had no idea you were selling that housing that cheaply.
    You rip someone apart before even reading all the posts.

    How many times have you done this now?

  70. #70
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    It was worth reading this thread just for this:
    Quote Originally Posted by bikeny
    Maybe my light design is threatening your plans of taking over the LED bike lighting market ! Anyway, get a life and stop insulting people who are helping out others.
    And of course this...
    Quote Originally Posted by StevelKnivel
    I spelled Knievel wrong
    Thanks for making me chuckle at work (on lunch break, of course).

  71. #71
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    Headon, Apply directly to the forehead...

    Quote Originally Posted by bikeny
    Where the h**l did that come from??? Take a chill pill dude. Calling me a liar and telling me I am raking people for the housing, nice touch!
    Take it as viral advertising. I thought the same thing whenever I see complaints about scar's amobea lights. Holy crap! You want $ for a custom housing, choice of LEDs/color/lenses with a Li-ion battery and charger! Why I could get the less than that from walmart for the same price! The nerve of people like you, trying to help other mountain bikers!

    Your housings look great and are unique. I'd love to have a few, just in case... But they won't last forever. I'm sure they'll die after 30k hours. Then what will people do? Replace the LEDs? They cost almost $11 each!

    If someone doesn't like it, let em buy commercial, make their own farking light or STFU.
    Slow-core. -.. .-. .. -. -.- .... --- -- . -... .-. . .--

  72. #72
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    I apologized for coming off rude, I should have remembered we are raising a bunch of sissy boys that can't handle criticism these days ( and Bikeny this isn't meant towards you) but all of you who felt a need to rip on me because I had some other opinion than the sweet gift of praises for seeing something a bit differently. I don't think I said anything that was demeaning and I never called anyone names and if some of you took it that way then I'd say you have issues and you should really quit participating in any forums or just kiss my smelly A**. And excuse me for objective but that's why some post topics in forums, to open topics for discussion and get feedback. Judging from the reactions here if some of you dumbnuts would jump off a bridge I'm sure many others would follow.
    Last edited by crisillo; 04-08-2008 at 12:57 AM.

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    Can't we all just get along?

    How about we just end this here. Mofoki, I was a bit offended by your initial post, prompting my response. You certainly could have worded your initial response a little nicer, and I think that is why people are jumping on you. You appoligized for not reading the whole thread and having all of the information, which was enough for me, but I guess not for everyone. Life is too short to argue over this crap.

    If anyone wants more information on my lights, I will be happy to answer any questions, otherwise I am done with this thread.

    Mark

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    If i wasn't building my own, i'd buy it - looks great

  75. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by SkUG
    If i wasn't building my own, i'd buy it - looks great
    Yeah the only thing I can see wrong with this light is that I didn't build it.

  76. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by mofoki
    I apologized for coming off rude, I should have remembered we are raising a bunch of sissy boys that can't handle criticism these days...
    Just an observation here, but I thought you were handled quite nicely...as evidenced by your apology...sissy boy.







    ...just having a little chuckle at your expense. I think you can handle it.
    Last edited by crisillo; 04-08-2008 at 12:58 AM.

  77. #77
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    Look guys...please keep the thread on topic without insulting others..... there is great content in here and I don't really want to lock it or start deleting posts, just because some of you cannot express disagreement without insulting others.....

    @mofoki: please read things through before you start criticizing people's work... it's only fair

  78. #78
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    I figure with the advances in LED design, there won't be a need to run these at 1000mA. With 3 pieces of R2 Cree, 750mA is about the same brightness as 1000mA using the original Crees (Q1?). And these suckers are easily upgradeable, just desolder the wires and unbolt the stars.

    The only problem with this design is that battery technology that matches this light is just too darned expensive now.

  79. #79
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    Just a word on the thermal properties.

    I run them at 750Mah with 3 Q5's. Ab****ely no heat probs. It gets a teeny bit warm to the touch. when running at 1000Mah they get warm to the touch. But nothing extremely hot. the Q5's even give enough light to be run at 500Mah when biking alone (which I usually do).

    Only gripe is the limited space for fitting the controller. Maybe I'll drill out the attachment studs for the controller once I retrofit 3 R2's and a boost driver instead of a step down driver. But that's about it. ow and maybe I can drill the back of the sides. That way I'll increase heatsinking surface while saving weight. BIKENY, is that a safe option?

  80. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiDaDunlop
    Just a word on the thermal properties.

    I run them at 750Mah with 3 Q5's. Ab****ely no heat probs. It gets a teeny bit warm to the touch. when running at 1000Mah they get warm to the touch. But nothing extremely hot. the Q5's even give enough light to be run at 500Mah when biking alone (which I usually do).

    Only gripe is the limited space for fitting the controller. Maybe I'll drill out the attachment studs for the controller once I retrofit 3 R2's and a boost driver instead of a step down driver. But that's about it. ow and maybe I can drill the back of the sides. That way I'll increase heatsinking surface while saving weight. BIKENY, is that a safe option?
    I definately hear what you are saying about the limited space for the controller! That was the only thing that I was not happy about with this design. It was one of those things that was hard to see when looking at the design on a computer screen, versus having an actual housing in your hand. If I ever make a new design, that would be the major change, as well as adding more surface area for heat dissipation.

    Concerning drilling out the back of the 2 sides, I'm not sure it will accomplish much. You will definately loos some weight, which I guess is a concern for you as you have it mounted on your helmet. For a bar light I wouldn't bother. I guess it would also increase the amount of surface area, but that new surface area would not be exposed to a lot of airflow when riding. I guess it is worth a try, but not sure it will make a noticeable difference. Now if you found an easy way to remove material and create some fins on the side or something, that would work!

    Mark

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    well, You can just bring an end mill in and cut a wave-like pattern around the edge, depending on how much room you have between the outside edge and the interior of the light. similar to what I'm doing.
    What do you guys think of this housing design?

    its a relatively simple thing to add/design/machine, but it adds gobs of surface area to the light. i believe that mine had something like a 60% increase in surface area just by adding the little cutouts

    -Bryan

  82. #82
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiDaDunlop
    Just a word on the thermal properties.

    I run them at 750Mah with 3 Q5's. Ab****ely no heat probs. It gets a teeny bit warm to the touch. when running at 1000Mah they get warm to the touch. But nothing extremely hot. the Q5's even give enough light to be run at 500Mah when biking alone (which I usually do).

    Only gripe is the limited space for fitting the controller. Maybe I'll drill out the attachment studs for the controller once I retrofit 3 R2's and a boost driver instead of a step down driver. But that's about it. ow and maybe I can drill the back of the sides. That way I'll increase heatsinking surface while saving weight. BIKENY, is that a safe option?
    When they get warm to the touch is not the way to test em. I blew a Maxflex driver a couple of weeks ago and the housing wasn't warm after running three hours. I thought at first the li-ion battery dropped low enough to cut out. Recharged it but the light never started up. It was the driver because the leds were fine. And the board was heatsinked with AA to a what I thought was an apropiate sink. I sent the board back to George and he confirmed it got toasted. My setup matched the sample specs documented for the driver but still the board blew out. So you see it's not just the housing getting warm or hot or whatever, it's a matter of testing current and leds capabilities too.

  83. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by mofoki
    I blew a Maxflex driver a couple of weeks ago and the housing wasn't warm after running three hours.
    That right there would indicate a problem to me. If the housing does not get warm, the heat from the LEDs and driver is not getting tranferred efficiently to the housing to be dissipated. It is a good sign when the housing gets warm with no airflow over it.

    Mark

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    Awesome looking light! Check your PM's!!

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    I partially alleviated the heat problem by simply sticking on computer RAM heatsinks with thermaltape to the rear of the casing. At 750mA setting with the kind of airflow I see on my rides, it stays a smidgen above the ambient temperature.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails DIY Cree triple, done right!-backview.jpg  


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    Solutions abound

    Quote Originally Posted by Tinier
    I've bought one of Bikeny's light housings kits, and there is a problem (sorry mike).

    But the problem isn't with the heat dissipation, rather it's with the width of the clamps. I did not measure the width of my Thomson Elite stem and the holes he drilled for it were about 2mm narrower (he did made the design based on the width of his own stem though). I've discovered the hard way why thomson elite is one of the stiffest 25.4mm stem on the market, basically they overkill in the clamping zones.

    The Thomson X4 however is narrow enough for the light, but I do not have the oversized bike clamps from lumicycle. Purchasing and shipping those 2 little clamps aren't worth my time, so now I'm patiently awaiting my friend who is going to UK for holiday in a few weeks time to get me the oversized clamps.

    Just my honest opinion, Mike's light is extremely well designed. The LED stars can be simply bolted on with abit of thermal paste (allowing for easy future upgrades) and the machining is top notch. Everything fits tightly together like jigsaw. All that's missing now is the damned oversized clamps. Oh well, I guess I can survive on a 200L + 2 Fenix P2Ds for the time being.
    My fix for that. That's a Titec BlockHead DH Stem
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails DIY Cree triple, done right!-3x-led.jpg  

    We are not so much concerned if you are slow as when you come to a halt.

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    Just happened to come across this thread. Kuods to the designer of this light, awesome design!!!

  88. #88
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    Nightshots/beamshots?

    A estimated lumen output?

  89. #89
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    Quote Originally Posted by Khrystyan27 View Post
    Nightshots/beamshots?

    A estimated lumen output?
    this is a truly ancient thread - things move fast enough in LED lights to make anything other than the housing irrelevant. Might be worth focusing your efforts on light threads from this year instead.

  90. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattthemuppet View Post
    this is a truly ancient thread - things move fast enough in LED lights to make anything other than the housing irrelevant. Might be worth focusing your efforts on light threads from this year instead.
    Yeah, but...

    I like this light design, more than his light output... If the housing is big enough it can be tuned with some Cree XM-L T6, for example...

    But this is cool for design and performance.

  91. #91
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    this housing doesn't have enough surface area to dissipate the heat of 3 LEDs at more than 1A. 3 XM-L at 3A would need A LOT more surface area, just look at some of the triple XM-L build threads.

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    dam good diy!

  93. #93
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    Wow, can't believe someone dug this thread up again!

    As an update, I am still using these lights, although I don't do a ton of night riding these days. As for newer LEDs, I am actually upgrading one of them right now with some XM-L U2 LEDs. As someone else said, one advantage is all that's required is unbolting the LEDs and unsoldering 6 wires. Well, thats not really true. The tricker part when switching to a new LED is figuring out the optics.

    Don't worry, I will not be running these at 3A! I will probably still use 700mA, but may try out 1A and see how it goes. With the newer LEDs being more efficient they produce less heat at the same current, so 1A may be OK without any mod's.

    These should give me 900 to 960 lumens at 700mA, or 1200 to 1300 at 1A.

    So with these XM-Ls I will get a bunch more light, cooler running, as well as longer run times because of the lower forward voltage. Win-win-win!

    Now I just need to figure out what optics work best with the XM-Ls.

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    Not quite win win win as you'll lose a bit of throw. XM-Ls running at the same current as the existing LEDs will produce their slightly greater output over a much larger surface area - the lumens per mm. square is quite a bit less. But I note from your first posts that you had a couple of wider optics used anyway so maybe it's fine for the use you have. :-)

    Sent from my GT-I9100 using Tapatalk

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    XM-L, the most performant LED solution at the moment...

    I am thinking what combination of batteries, do i have to use, to drive 2 XM-L's at FULL power, and have 1:30-2 hours constant lighting.

    Can anyone tell me?
    Maybe a link...
    Thx in advance!

  96. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by mfj197 View Post
    Not quite win win win as you'll lose a bit of throw. XM-Ls running at the same current as the existing LEDs will produce their slightly greater output over a much larger surface area - the lumens per mm. square is quite a bit less. But I note from your first posts that you had a couple of wider optics used anyway so maybe it's fine for the use you have. :-)

    Sent from my GT-I9100 using Tapatalk
    Most of my riding is on very tight technical singletrack at relatively slow speeds, so throw is not a big concern for me. I am happy using something like 20 degree optics.

    But your statement is correct, for max throw, the XPE is probably still the best bet.

    Then again, compared to the original XR LEDs that were in this light, this is going to blow it away everywhere!

  97. #97
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    Quote Originally Posted by Khrystyan27 View Post
    XM-L, the most performant LED solution at the moment...

    I am thinking what combination of batteries, do i have to use, to drive 2 XM-L's at FULL power, and have 1:30-2 hours constant lighting.

    Can anyone tell me?
    Maybe a link...
    Thx in advance!
    Go to the following website and download the LED PRO software. It's a very easy way to calculate run times.
    http://www.jtice.com/led_pro/led_pro.htm

  98. #98
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    There is also a calculator here http://www.kenworster.com/ledcalc/.

  99. #99
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    I can't remember what your optic height is in this light, but LXP-RS (Laura RS in round form) should work very well - I very much like the Laura RS I have in one of my lights. Good mix of throw and spill, very smooth beam too.

  100. #100
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    Thx both for the software.

    These weeks i am goana present my lights.

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