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  1. #1
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    Easy2LED housing with external switch build

    Thought I'd post a step-by-step of an Easy2DIY housing done with the cable gland and external switch. I think this is how Zemike imagined the build originally, as it works well with the screw-in rear cap.

    Here is the battery pack- 2 protected Xtar batteries in this case in a Digikey holder, with a magicshine cable from Dealextreme.


    Here is the battery pack assembled, ready for wrapping with self-fusing silicone tape then armoring with heat-shrink



    Finished battery pack with velcro added, and ends sealed with plasti-dip painted on.

  2. #2
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    Here is the PPT switch and power cable wired up, and harnessed with adhesive heat-shrink. Soldering the wires on the PTT switch was horrible. The harness goes through an M8 cable gland. The back cap from the housing has been tapped for an M8 thread.



    Here the harness is assembled with the gland and back cap, and the body of the Easy2LED housing
    The parts in order are:

    Outer threaded lens cover
    LED-DNA narrow optic
    XML-2 neutral tint LED (Digikey) mounted on a copper star by our own Matthemuppet.
    L-flex driver from TaskLED



    All wired up, with thermal tape under the L-flex and thermal paste under the XML-2 board. Pressure from the threaded lens holds it tight. I left the cable gland loose to allow the back cap to rotate without twisting the harness.


    Assembled, ready for mounting bracket. Cable gland can be tightened up now.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Easy2LED housing with external switch build-image.jpg  

    Last edited by Ofroad'bent; 04-06-2013 at 12:49 PM.

  3. #3
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    Finished light

    Here's the finished light with a little swivel bracket and a Cateye mount.






  4. #4
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    Very nice build with photos!
    Talk to me about the switch, does it come with Velcro or did you add it? Where did you source the switch?
    Well done Off Road!
    09 Specialized Rockhopper Comp 29er

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by beecrazy View Post
    Very nice build with photos!
    Talk to me about the switch, does it come with Velcro or did you add it? Where did you source the switch?
    Well done Off Road!
    The switch is a PTT switch I got from Zemike's online store. Also available on eBay. Seriously, don't bother- the soldering of those finicky wires with the weird little threads in them was awful.

    If I made another one I'd do this: (and probably will if the switch solder job fails)
    Easy DIY remote waterproof momentary switch

  6. #6
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    Looks good! Does the LEDDNA optic fit nicely?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vancbiker View Post
    Looks good! Does the LEDDNA optic fit nicely?
    Drops in perfectly. Pressure from the cap holds optic, LED and thermal paste against housing.

    I will get beam shots when the snow is gone for true comparison.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ofroad'bent View Post
    Drops in perfectly.
    Nice. IIRC that optic measures about 21mm with the holder so was not sure it would fit without a modification.

  9. #9
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    nice job! that's about as easy as it gets, other than the remote (shielded co-ax wires?). According to Match on BLF, that sinkpad star is worth an extra 10% of output and for longer, compared to an aluminium star. He got ~1150lm @3A from a U2 bin, so that T6 should be 7-10% less than that. I like mine alot, even at only 1.5-1.8A.

  10. #10
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    I'll be able to test more when Barb gives me back all the battery packs she borrowed for a 6-day non-stop race in Argentina. The team is taking 4 of my lights, leaving me only 1 1s1p battery for my commute, so I can't compare different lights.

    It certainly seems powerful and has a nice tint.

    Really, with this style build there's not much I'd change about the housing.

  11. #11
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    What kind of run time do you get with the 1s1p battery?

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by ubrv8 View Post
    What kind of run time do you get with the 1s1p battery?
    I run and ski with it on level 2 of 5, which goes about 8 hours on the single cell. Level 3 gives me about 4, and is tons of light for skiing with the XML2. It seems to throw proportionally more light on the lower power settings, but that's just my opinion.

  13. #13
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    @ Ofroad'bent
    Great little light. Nice and clean.
    How is the LED thermally connected to the housing?
    Wrecker of fine things

  14. #14
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    Thats a nice tidy build...
    How do find the cable where it goes into the battery pack? Mine kept suffering with split plastidip from where the cable would flex.
    So I made a little tube that the cable fit snug inside and rapped that in the shrink rap...then plastidipped over it..
    Hopefully this pic helps


    I've got a bag of those led DNA narrow optics, ill try them with some XM-L2's when they arrive..
    Planning to upgrade my helmet lights..so ill post some beam shots.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by 02Slayer View Post
    @ Ofroad'bent
    Great little light. Nice and clean.
    How is the LED thermally connected to the housing?
    Thermal paste, then pressed tightly down by the screwed-in lens cover.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Goldigger View Post
    Thats a nice tidy build...
    How do find the cable where it goes into the battery pack? Mine kept suffering with split plastidip from where the cable would flex.
    So I made a little tube that the cable fit snug inside and rapped that in the shrink rap...then plastidipped over it..
    Hopefully this pic helps


    I've got a bag of those led DNA narrow optics, ill try them with some XM-L2's when they arrive..
    Planning to upgrade my helmet lights..so ill post some beam shots.
    Very nice job GD. Mine are internally waterproofed with silicone tape. The heat shrink and plasti-dip are just insurance.

  17. #17
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    Hi Ofroad'bent, you got my attention on building battery packs. I'm not a DIY kind of user, but I've always been interested in this kind of things. Given the fact that my bike was stolen and with it all of batteries (yes, I had the spare one in my saddle bag), I want to save some $ and build my own.

    I've just tear down 2 laptop batteries and now have a total of 12 cells at ~3.7v. Only 2 of them of each pack had a voltage bellow 3v. If it proves inexpensive, I will build my own pack using 6 of these (I want a 7.4v 6000mAh pack, so It would have to be a 2s3p configuration, right?). I was looking around and fount some battery holders with 1s3p but only this one has circuit protection built-in: Battery holder: Li-Ion 18650 Battery Holder (1S3P) With 2.6" long 20AWG & PCB After that, I would sold the wires properly and seal it with 11.0" (280mm) Width Rubber-like Heavy-Duty Heat Shrink Wrap Tube and, probably, a safety fire bag just to make sure it doesn't explode... I don't think this will happen if I use protection circuits, but...I'll think about that later.

    My question to you is:
    1) Is there any other place I can get a battery holder for the configuration I have with PCB already installed? Batteryspace.com charges 40$ for shipping...which is a lot. DX.com has a few, but without PCB.
    2) I'm not that good at electricity, but will I be able to get the config I want using 2 of the holders I posted above connected in series?
    3) Besides the MS connector I can get from DX.com, what else do I need to make this work?

    That is all. I apologize once again if my questions were that stupid, but I'm a novice yet.

    Now that I'm seeing how long this post turned out to, I'm wondering If I should have opened a new topic instead...

  18. #18
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    Better off getting a 2s2p holder here:
    1* Battery Holder/Case for Li-ion 18650 17670 battery+ 2S2P w/PCM output:6-8.4V | eBay

    And wiring a 1S2P holder in parallel, or ask Hunk Lee if he can make you a 2S3p.

    Warning- the soldering on all these holders is a bit dodgy and the wires thin.

    I would suggest instead ganging up 3 of the 2-cell holders I showed and wiring in he PCM yourself.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by PedroDank View Post
    I've just tear down 2 laptop batteries and now have a total of 12 cells at ~3.7v. Only 2 of them of each pack had a voltage bellow 3v.
    Before you go to the effort to build packs with those salvaged cells, you really should test their condition beyond just a voltage test. Use a hobby charger to do a
    charge/discharge/charge cycle. You may find that they don't have the 2000mAh capacity you want to achieve your pack capacity. In my experience the used laptop
    cells I got from a laptop that died at less than 2 years were good as well as some of the cells from a pack that died with less than 6 months use proved good.
    Cells from older packs or packs that gradually have lost runtime on the laptop have always had low capacity.

  20. #20
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    Thanks for the quick reply!
    The problem with 2s2p + 1s2p is that the final battery pack would have a weird final shape, which is not good to attach to my bike frame and, more importantly, the whole structure would not be very stable give the fact I'm going to protected with that simple PVC I posted (any better recommendation for this?).

    If I have to wire 3 of those 2-cell holders, I think I will be better with glueing the cells together and make a final 3x2 configuration, don't you think? A total of 6 cells makes a large battery, so I need to make sure everything is well installed and that it attaches correctly on my bike's frame...

    Vancbiker, I forgot to mention I'll be ordering the charger toady. Testing the 12 batteries before getting my hands on this diy project was already on my to-do list.
    Btw, I'm still looking for a 18650 charger. Can you recommend me any good one from eBay or any other site besides DX? I can see some good (given the feedback and the built-in protection) on DX, but ordering from them usually takes at least 30 days to get here, lately...
    Going to gamble on this, IF the diy thing proves inexpensive.
    Last edited by PedroDank; 04-26-2013 at 09:18 AM.

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    What is the need to use the metal swivel bracket in addition to the cateye mount?Doesn't the cateye helmet mount allow for adjustment? Did you need clearance for the rear cable gland w/ your helmet? I just realized you are using this for skiing and not mounting it to a helmet all the time, that is probably why. What are you using for a headlamp strap? Great little light. TIA. Andy

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy13 View Post
    What is the need to use the metal swivel bracket in addition to the cateye mount?Doesn't the cateye helmet mount allow for adjustment? Did you need clearance for the rear cable gland w/ your helmet? I just realized you are using this for skiing and not mounting it to a helmet all the time, that is probably why. What are you using for a headlamp strap? Great little light. TIA. Andy
    I actually just use the little swivel bracket alone with some Dual lock and Velcro on my helmet, but for my friends the Cateye is simpler as they don't need Dual Lock glued to their helments.

    If it's just for helmet use I will mount directly to the Cateye as you suggest, but on a headband it needs to tilt a bit more than the Cateye allows.

    I've used various headbands- got some Magicshine ones form DX and cut off the tubular mount, also got some from EL34 and cut off the arms.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by PedroDank View Post
    Thanks for the quick reply!
    The problem with 2s2p + 1s2p is that the final battery pack would have a weird final shape, which is not good to attach to my bike frame and, more importantly, the whole structure would not be very stable give the fact I'm going to protected with that simple PVC I posted (any better recommendation for this?).

    If I have to wire 3 of those 2-cell holders, I think I will be better with glueing the cells together and make a final 3x2 configuration, don't you think? A total of 6 cells makes a large battery, so I need to make sure everything is well installed and that it attaches correctly on my bike's frame...

    Vancbiker, I forgot to mention I'll be ordering the charger toady. Testing the 12 batteries before getting my hands on this diy project was already on my to-do list.
    Btw, I'm still looking for a 18650 charger. Can you recommend me any good one from eBay or any other site besides DX? I can see some good (given the feedback and the built-in protection) on DX, but ordering from them usually takes at least 30 days to get here, lately...
    Going to gamble on this, IF the diy thing proves inexpensive.
    Why not wire in 3 2S1P holders then. 3 of the Digikey holders with 1 protection board will give a nice brick shape.
    I suggest you wrap it in silicone tape before the heat shrink for waterproofing.

    As for the charger- I have a Turnigy hobby charger, which can also test batteries for capacity. Need to buy a power adapter and plugs for it.

  24. #24
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    Yes, I guess I'll go with that. If I'm going to install one single protection board, then I don't need batter holders with PCB already built-in, right? Can you recommend me any protection board?
    About the tape, I found this: Rescue Tape Self-Fusing Silicone Tape, 12' Length x 1" Width, Black: Amazon.com: Industrial & Scientific I think I can buy it at our usual local supermarkets here in Portugal...

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by PedroDank View Post
    Can you recommend me any good one from eBay or any other site besides DX? I can see some good (given the feedback and the built-in protection) on DX, but ordering from them usually takes at least 30 days to get here, lately...
    Going to gamble on this, IF the diy thing proves inexpensive.
    My son recently bought this charger...

    Turnigy Accucel-6 50W 6A Balancer/Charger w/ accessories

    I played around with it a bit and was pretty impressed.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by PedroDank View Post
    Yes, I guess I'll go with that. If I'm going to install one single protection board, then I don't need batter holders with PCB already built-in, right? Can you recommend me any protection board?
    About the tape, I found this: Rescue Tape Self-Fusing Silicone Tape, 12' Length x 1" Width, Black: Amazon.com: Industrial & Scientific I think I can buy it at our usual local supermarkets here in Portugal...
    How about this PCM


    Protection Circuit Module PCM-7.4V LiIon 18650 2S2P LPo | eBay

  27. #27
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    Thanks, Vancbiker, but I just can't see how I can charge a single cell with that.
    From all the "cheap" ones I've searched, this one seems pretty good: UltraFire All-in-One 18650/14500/17500/18500/17670 Batteries Charger - Free Shipping - DealExtreme but it is even cheaper at eBay: UltraFire Charger WF 139 14500 17670 18650 Battery | eBay Should i trust that eBay seller? Gonna ask him/her if it is the latest WF-139 model because other people at DX.com said the old version had problems...

    Ofroad'bent, I've just looked into local supermarket's website (bigger ones here in Portugal) and couldn't find that kind of silicon tape. I did find a lot of that duct tape (although it is not labeled as such here). Can I use that instead? I think there are some that are waterproof.
    Also, just to make sure: I need to mount each and very one of that 2S1P battery holder in parallel, right?

    About that PCM...I know very little about this, so I have to trust you Everything you show me will sound ok to me. That is for 2S2P...will that work for my final pack? It seems the input (those pins label are not intuitive at all) is 3.7v only... I'm sorry, but this is all new to me :\

    EDIT: If each of the 3 battery holder has a built-in PCM, why would I need to install one more in the final configuration?

    EDIT2: Forget the other charger. Read some reviews now and it seems this is the one to go: Cheap OEM 2*18650 Lithium Battery Charger (110V~240V AC)
    Going to place the order now.

    EDIT3: Ok, I think I now understand why the charger posted by Vancbiker was important. If used tab between the parallel configuration, I would charge the cells individually; if one cell died, I wouldn't harm the others...Is that it? Is that what they call balancing? Anyway, as I'll be using "standard" MagicShine connectors, I'll be ditching this since I will use a MS or Xeccon charger as well (8.4v rated)
    Last edited by PedroDank; 04-26-2013 at 06:08 PM.

  28. #28
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    The hobby charger allows balance charging and also has a discharge mode. When it does a discharge cycle, it displays how much power it has used. That is a handy method to see the condition of your cell. A single cell holder is cheap and easy to use with the hobby charger for testing batteries.

    The chargers like the DX one do not have a discharge cycle to assess cell condition. I have used a couple of the Ultrafire WF139 chargers for about 4 years now. They have worked perfectly but I am planning to get a hobby charger this year.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by PedroDank View Post

    Ofroad'bent, I've just looked into local supermarket's website (bigger ones here in Portugal) and couldn't find that kind of silicon tape. I did find a lot of that duct tape (although it is not labeled as such here). Can I use that instead? I think there are some that are waterproof.
    Also, just to make sure: I need to mount each and very one of that 2S1P battery holder in parallel, right?

    About that PCM...I know very little about this, so I have to trust you Everything you show me will sound ok to me. That is for 2S2P...will that work for my final pack? It seems the input (those pins label are not intuitive at all) is 3.7v only... I'm sorry, but this is all new to me :\

    EDIT: If each of the 3 battery holder has a built-in PCM, why would I need to install one more in the final configuration?

    EDIT2: Forget the other charger. Read some reviews now and it seems this is the one to go: Cheap OEM 2*18650 Lithium Battery Charger (110V~240V AC)
    Going to place the order now.
    Duct tape isn't the same. You can get self fusing silicone tape or rescue tape on eBay.
    If you look at the diagram for the PCM, it shows where you can connect individual cells to a common wire to keep them balanced, or connect the whole pack. I'm no expert either, but it looks fairly clear. You can write a hunk Lee too.
    I am suggesting this *instead* of protected holders- wiring and solder will be better.

    Here's another one:
    Protection Circuit: Li-ion/Li-Po Battery Pack 7.4V 8.4V | eBay

    Wiring diagram
    http://www.batteryspace.com/prod-spe...Li02S8-021.pdf

    You can always buy a protected battery pack from him too- about $60 with free shipping for 2S3P
    Last edited by Ofroad'bent; 04-27-2013 at 05:46 AM.

  30. #30
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    Thanks for all the replies.

    The whole purpose of building my own battery pack is to reduce costs since I have a couple of used 18650 cells. The hobby charger does look nice but it is very expensive.

    Ofroad'bent, that diagram is great. I now understand the COM pin. Will do a schematic later to show you how I will make mine. I've decided to go with a 4-cell battery instead.
    Will also look for the rescue tape on eBay. I did searched around for this PVC shrin wrap 11.0" (280mm) Width Rubber-like Heavy-Duty Heat Shrink Wrap Tube and could not find it anywhere but that site. Unfortunately, batteryspace.com charges A LOT for shipping. If you happen to know any shrink wrap with a thickness > 0.8mil, please let me know. That one looked great, but the cost of it.....

  31. #31
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    Can't believe you need heat shrink tubing that wide- you just need enough to slip over the sealed pack.

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    Back on topic- as predicted, the PPT switch failed yesterday- probably a bad connection on those terrible wires. Luckily it just stayed on the level I had set. I had already made up a more robust one as I mentioned, and I rewired it today.

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