Results 1 to 91 of 91
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342

    Finally, a Real Light (TM) for a Real Man (TM)

    None of this machining nonsense, XYsandwhatsits and all that jazz. I'm going to be rending a light with cold bare hands (cue Charlton Heston voice), some entirely inappropriate tools, a dash of incompetence and even my teeth if necessary.

    So, after that intentionally inflammatory and attention grabbing title, can anyone guess what this simply awesome light will be made out of?

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    281
    hopes and dreams?
    I WANT TO BUY YOUR MAGICSHINE LIGHTS! Working or not.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    nope, not bright enough

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    33
    A quad XM-L urologist's scope?

  5. #5
    Randomhead
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    1,177
    unicorn tears?

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by bobdotorg View Post
    A quad XM-L urologist's scope?
    ooh, interesting. I did read proctologist for some reason, which is a touch disturbing. Either way, bacteria, cancer, anything really wouldn't stand much chance with that..

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    321

    ... and if we just ...

    Edited: delete failed attempt at humour
    Last edited by find_bruce; 05-30-2011 at 03:45 PM.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
    unicorn tears?
    hadn't thought of that actually.

    Sadly, now I've hyped it all up the answer is much more prosaic:



    however, if I had to choose between a small lump of aluminium and 6ft of 1in.sq. tubing with which to fight an angry bear, the tubing would get it every time (quickly followed by me, I guess)

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    might as well get into the meat and potatoes of it.

    Meant to take a pic of the 3 sled pieces but it was a bit boring so I didn't.

    here's the back end of the sled, about to be chopped up



    after being chopped up



    and with its matching front sled pieces loosely bolted on



    driver (h6flex) goes in the middle, LEDs on the end and switch/cable/remote cable go on the other end (top, in the picture).

    Have to cut the outside bits (from my bear-beating, Real Man 6ft length of tumultuous tubing) off tomorrow and haphazardly cut them to size

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    33
    I'm making a similar build, but using a DIY Class A Amp heat sink as the base. A hacksaw, file, drill and tap should get most if it done. Maybe I can finally put the cordless Dremel to good use.

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by find_bruce View Post
    Oh oh oh I got it.

    You are going to make a tail light, by using your hands to take one of these

    and put it where you think the sunshine come from.

    You have been told you are not competent to find the appropriate receptacle with both hands, so you will be using tools to help you locate it.

    Finally you will use your teeth if necessary to trim your nails so you don't give yourself an injury.

    Did I get it?
    how do you guys come up with this stuff? Genius

    Funnily enough (hence the morbid dwelling on proctologists), I heard a funny saying the other day:

    "may your proctologist have thin fingers"

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by bobdotorg View Post
    I'm making a similar build, but using a DIY Class A Amp heat sink as the base. A hacksaw, file, drill and tap should get most if it done. Maybe I can finally put the cordless Dremel to good use.
    neat! You'll have to do a build report so we can see how you did it.

    Sadly, I have all the imagination of a snail, so all my lights are made out of exactly the same material. As a technological improvement akin to the invention of the steam engine, I am now using a jigsaw with a metal blade to cut off the lumps. Takes a couple of minutes and the bits end up relatively square, as opposed to 30min plus and like an Escher drawing using my Dremel


  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    1,309
    Long days of Northern Hemisphere Summer are upon us. Building slows.
    Order your parts now from DX and KD and maybe they will be here in time to build lights for winter riding season.
    In the mean time be thankful for hyperactive worm wranglers hacking lights out of tubing and keeping this forum going.

    Appreciate the entertainment and good luck with the new light. Thanks.

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Goldigger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    1,669
    Come on Matt please talk x y and z, its the only language I understand

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    205
    New bombproof light with 10*XML? (:

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by odtexas View Post
    Long days of Northern Hemisphere Summer are upon us. Building slows.
    Order your parts now from DX and KD and maybe they will be here in time to build lights for winter riding season.
    In the mean time be thankful for hyperactive worm wranglers hacking lights out of tubing and keeping this forum going.

    Appreciate the entertainment and good luck with the new light. Thanks.
    don't forget the boyz dahn unda, they're starting to hit "winter" about now

    funnily enough, I ordered some of the parts for this light back in January, I've just been futzing around doing other bits and pieces in the meantime (although I do now have a very neat rear facing dome light for my Focus wagon). Plus, my helmet light is actually pretty decent, it's mostly the fact that I ride v. rocky trails but can't see the rocks (no shadows) that prompted building this light. And the fact that it'll piss off my riding buddy with his Seca 700

    on the subject of funny, I built my commuter light when it was ~ -20C in the garage and you could barely see me under all my clothes, now it's ~ +30C and I'm getting bits of Dremel disk pinging off my chest. Crazy.


  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by Goldigger View Post
    Come on Matt please talk x y and z, its the only language I understand
    and to think we're both from the Motherland, sniff

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by klynk View Post
    New bombproof light with 10*XML? (:
    I wish! On both points!

    It will however have a completely mismatched set of hacked up computer heatsinks cooling (possibly) it down so it doesn't self combust

  19. #19
    mtbr member
    Reputation: TTGV's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    49
    computer heatsinks...

    +1 !!

    and Artic Silver epoxy and lexan and ...

    Good luck !

  20. #20
    Rep Power Infinity +2
    Reputation: brad72's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    1,538
    Quote Originally Posted by Goldigger View Post
    Come on Matt please talk x y and z, its the only language I understand
    Jay, what about A & B axis when you convert the SX2 beast into a 5 axis milling machine

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DjPCE...embedded#at=11
    Last edited by brad72; 05-30-2011 at 05:51 PM.

  21. #21
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Goldigger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    1,669
    Quote Originally Posted by brad72 View Post
    Jay, what about A & B axis when you convert the SX2 beast into a 5 axis milling machine

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DjPCE...embedded#at=11
    Thats just crazy

  22. #22
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by brad72 View Post
    Jay, what about A & B axis when you convert the SX2 beast into a 5 axis milling machine

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DjPCE...embedded#at=11
    whaaat? Stop speaking in tongues will you!

    I see the invidious (perfidious?) influence of the machining monkeys is seeping into this thread. I must stamp it out at once!

  23. #23
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by TTGV View Post
    computer heatsinks...
    they're the best ones! You get added brownie points the older they are - the one I have in mind is from a PII (that's Pentium, not Phenom) slot heatsink. There's a risk that it'll make the light look like Dame Edna's glasses, but that's a risk I'm willing to take..


  24. #24
    mtbr member
    Reputation: TTGV's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    49
    Whouaou !
    What a night bird look ! Do you often cross this cyclist ?
    The hairs make me say that you should have a go for a violet ano on your PII heatsinks !
    Ah, and diamonds are the best for heat conduction....

  25. #25
    Rep Power Infinity +2
    Reputation: brad72's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    1,538
    Quote Originally Posted by mattthemuppet View Post
    whaaat? Stop speaking in tongues will you!

    I see the invidious (perfidious?) influence of the machining monkeys is seeping into this thread. I must stamp it out at once!
    when words like invidious and perfidious are being used, it is time to get the hand tools out. Hand scrape the flats where the led dies sit and file the heatsink grooves. Must say though if my workshop was sitting at around -20º i would want to have a hack saw or file in my hand to get the blood pumping.

    As for heatsinks, I found one from about 15-20 years ago. Perhaps I should donate it to the national trust or perhaps attach it to my mill made light to keep it real

  26. #26
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by TTGV View Post
    Whouaou !
    What a night bird look ! Do you often cross this cyclist ?
    The hairs make me say that you should have a go for a violet ano on your PII heatsinks !
    Ah, and diamonds are the best for heat conduction....
    she/he rarely looks much better than that I'm afraid.

    Only silver heatsinks - I once tried painting a light so the black heatsink and silver body didn't look so goofy and that was a time consuming mess.

  27. #27
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by brad72 View Post
    when words like invidious and perfidious are being used, it is time to get the hand tools out. Hand scrape the flats where the led dies sit and file the heatsink grooves. Must say though if my workshop was sitting at around -20º i would want to have a hack saw or file in my hand to get the blood pumping.

    As for heatsinks, I found one from about 15-20 years ago. Perhaps I should donate it to the national trust or perhaps attach it to my mill made light to keep it real
    it's the only way you can reconnect with the Real Man(Tm) within you Brad!

    Also, having a slightly shonky looking light makes other riders, with their shop bought lights, a little less embarrassed that yours kicks their arses. IMO obviously

  28. #28
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    and you all thought I was joking about the 6ft length of bear-beating tumultuous tubing?


  29. #29
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    managed, just, to fit it in the vice and cut two lengths for the housing



    cut a section out of each centre facing side to leave room for the driver and wire between the 2 LEDs



    and JBwelded the 2 together overnight



    now I know that JBweld sticks pretty well to wood After cursing at it for a bit I got it all apart, it's all straight and the sled slots in perfectly.

    now I need to drill and tap various holes, hack up a PII heatsink and figure out how to attach my Cateye spacer without skewering the driver. Off to a conference tomorrow, so no updates until next week..

  30. #30
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Goldigger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    1,669
    Quote Originally Posted by mattthemuppet View Post
    and you all thought I was joking about the 6ft length of bear-beating tumultuous tubing?

    6ft = 1828.8mm
    That gives you room for 91 xml's on 20mm stars

    Just stay off narrow single track with a 6ft wide light

  31. #31
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    that should give me enough light I guess.

    like you said, maneuverability would take a hit, plus passing people on even fireroads would be tricky!

  32. #32
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    795
    Quote Originally Posted by mattthemuppet View Post
    None of this machining nonsense, XYsandwhatsits and all that jazz. I'm going to be rending a light with cold bare hands (cue Charlton Heston voice), some entirely inappropriate tools, a dash of incompetence and even my teeth if necessary.

    So, after that intentionally inflammatory and attention grabbing title, can anyone guess what this simply awesome light will be made out of?
    achesalot beat you to it...
    Triple Seoul P4 LED Light

  33. #33
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    beat me to what?

    his (and Scar's) lights were the inspiration for my original helmet lamp last year, but their style is a pain to work with which is why I thought up this "sled-light" variation. This is my 1st double sled light after building 5 single sled lights. Thought people might be interested to see how it goes..

  34. #34
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Goldigger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    1,669
    I think we all are looking to deeply, well done Matt for making a 6ft long square tube.
    How many rolls of foil did You have to melt down and extrude?

  35. #35
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by Goldigger View Post
    How many rolls of foil did You have to melt down and extrude?
    none, though I did have to leave the wife at the shop so I could fit it in the car. She didn't say anything so I assume she was ok with it

  36. #36
    A waste of time it is is
    Reputation: emu26's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    3,283
    Quote Originally Posted by mattthemuppet View Post
    none, though I did have to leave the wife at the shop so I could fit it in the car. She didn't say anything so I assume she was ok with it
    That reminded me of this super cheap auto ad from a few years back
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=piQX5...eature=related

    Matt, next time you JB weld like that stick a small piece of baking paper, you know the stuff the little lady cooks your cookies on, between the tube and the clamp. This stops the wood from sticking and the paper "should" peel of the JB weld dags that seep out. Also i have found the tubes stick together much better if you give the two facing sides a hit with coarse sand paper. The epoxy seems to key better that way.

    Nice work

  37. #37
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    thanks for the tips Emu, especially the baking paper. I scuffed up the mating surfaces with the dremel before hand as I've had plenty of experience of JBweld being poo. More progress next week, shouldn't take too long to finish up..

    funny ad I remember Supercheap, used to get alot of my car bits'n'pieces there.

  38. #38
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    right, some more work done on Dame Edna. She aint pretty, but she's entertaining:


    from the back


    and underneath (oo-er missus)


    heatsinks are from an old Pentium2 gel imaging PC that blew up at work when the power went out a while back. Drilling is superbly shoddy, but adds to that quintessential "made by a blind Englishman in a shed look" that hipsters get all wet over. The platform on the bottom is to add some more meat for the Cateye spacer screws to bite on - the housing tubing is thinner gauge than the sled ($20 for 6ft or $25 for 4ft, do you think I'm an idiot Mr. Homedepot?).

    Now I need to drill some more holes - for the sled and spacer screws, plus the LED mounting screws. Tonight or tomorrow night, depending on how knackering the ride is tonight.

  39. #39
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    3,170
    Hmmmm.... Might be a good time to buy stock in the JB Weld company

    I do like the large heat sink area. As long as you have a good thermal path from the LED to the housing those emitters should be happy.

  40. #40
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    A little bit goes a long way Seriously, since I started clamping parts together to JBWeld them, I've had to use hardly any of the stuff. Seems to help with the thermal transfer from housing to heatsink too.

    The whole bottom of the sled will be in contact with the housing (cinched down with 4, possibly 6 screws, with thermal paste in between) so hopefully the contact will be ok. Seems to work well in the single LED sled lights I've made, so hopefully it'll be able to handle the full 20W. It's not as good as the unibody lights which have at least 1 less thermal junction, but mine is clearly going to be prettier!

  41. #41
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by emu26 View Post
    the little lady
    if I called Ingrid that, she'd cut my nuts off. Seriously, she comes from the same region of Ecuador (Manabi) that Wayne Bobbit's wife came from (don't search from work, please). Even calling her The Wife gets me a dirty look.

    oh, the baking paper trick worked a treat though, thanks

  42. #42
    Rep Power Infinity +2
    Reputation: brad72's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    1,538
    many have used a table say with carbide tipped blade for cutting fins.

    I use 125mm carbide tipped blades in angle grinders all the time for cutting alloy. Does a fantastic job. I also have a 125mm carbide blade mounted on an arbor for my mill. Just need to keep fingers away an they are far from forgiving.

  43. #43
    Rep Power Infinity +2
    Reputation: brad72's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    1,538
    Real men aren't scared of their wives. But like all real men we know what's good for us and by creating the illusion that ours wives are the boss we are able to get what we want and still get some action, if you get my drift.

    As for the light she's coming along nicely. Certainly looks like will handle the heat nicely and plenty of finned surface area. I look forward to seeing the finished product.

  44. #44
    Rep Power Infinity +2
    Reputation: brad72's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    1,538
    Quote Originally Posted by Goldigger View Post
    Care to show us a pic Brad? I can only imagine its a slitting saw hence the arbor?
    I'll put a pick up tomorrow Jay. More or less a slitting saw, just take 4mm cuts which is perfect for fin cutting, like trouties table saw. One of my workers has a 300mm saw blade on his mill. He did say he stands well back though

  45. #45
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    368
    how do you cut your fins ?
    without loosing fingers ?

    still to poor, to get an X3 or even a ZX45 mill,...
    anybody tried a plunge router ? or do you use a table-saw ?

  46. #46
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Goldigger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    1,669
    Quote Originally Posted by brad72 View Post
    many have used a table say with carbide tipped blade for cutting fins.

    I use 125mm carbide tipped blades in angle grinders all the time for cutting alloy. Does a fantastic job. I also have a 125mm carbide blade mounted on an arbor for my mill. Just need to keep fingers away an they are far from forgiving.
    Care to show us a pic Brad? I can only imagine its a slitting saw hence the arbor?

  47. #47
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    321
    I want to say "looking good" but that doesn't seem quite right, nor does "not as ugly as you threatened".

    How about "looking purposeful & practical"?

  48. #48
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by brad72 View Post
    many have used a table say with carbide tipped blade for cutting fins.

    I use 125mm carbide tipped blades in angle grinders all the time for cutting alloy. Does a fantastic job. I also have a 125mm carbide blade mounted on an arbor for my mill. Just need to keep fingers away an they are far from forgiving.
    I agree, that's a really neat way of cutting fins. However, I'm incredibly accident prone (plus I need all my fingers for work) and can't find locally the thicker gauge tubing that Troutie and Andy13 use. That's the trouble with buying 6ft of the bloody stuff, you're kind of stuck with it for the next 10 lights or so

  49. #49
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by brad72 View Post
    Real men aren't scared of their wives. But like all real men we know what's good for us and by creating the illusion that ours wives are the boss we are able to get what we want and still get some action, if you get my drift.

    As for the light she's coming along nicely. Certainly looks like will handle the heat nicely and plenty of finned surface area. I look forward to seeing the finished product.
    so very true. However, Manabitas (women from Manabi, Ecuador) are renowned for a) their firery tempers and b) punishing their husbands transgressions with a machete; flat side if you've only been a little bit naughty, sharp side if you've been very naughty. Pays to err on the side of caution IMO

    thanks for the comments. It'll certainly be a face only a father can love

  50. #50
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by find_bruce View Post
    I want to say "looking good" but that doesn't seem quite right, nor does "not as ugly as you threatened".

    How about "looking purposeful & practical"?
    thanks! the "not as ugly as you threatened" is quite a complement.

    no progress planned until the weekend as I feel like I've been hit by a train after last night's ride and I plan on doing no exercise at all tonight

  51. #51
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    okey doke, housing is now finished, with a bit of polish and elbow grease so it doesn't look quite so ghetto





    cateye spacer, as usual



    close ups of the sled



    left to right: cable gland>remote wire>main switch



    it's even bling on the inside



    thought that might help with heat transfer to the outer housing, though it's probably entirely unnecessary.

    left to do:
    add LEDs and wire it up (duh)
    wire up 3S2P battery (double duh)
    make remote switch from old taskled switch (hmm)

  52. #52
    A waste of time it is is
    Reputation: emu26's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    3,283
    Quote Originally Posted by mattthemuppet View Post
    right, some more work done on Dame Edna. She aint pretty, but she's entertaining:
    Love the reasoning behind the name I never thought I would say this but I honestly didn't ever think I'd see Dame Edna polish up so well

    Light is looking really good but you know if you left it rough instead of polishing it you might have got away with half that amount of finning

  53. #53
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Ofroad'bent's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    1,360
    Oh man, now we have to polish our sled lights? Matt, stop raising the bar.

  54. #54
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by emu26 View Post
    Love the reasoning behind the name I never thought I would say this but I honestly didn't ever think I'd see Dame Edna polish up so well

    Light is looking really good but you know if you left it rough instead of polishing it you might have got away with half that amount of finning
    I'd love to rename it "The Black Mamba" a la Megamind, but Dame Edna's kind of stuck now..

    I might have got away with less finning, but would it have looked as awesome? I think not

  55. #55
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by Ofroad'bent View Post
    Oh man, now we have to polish our sled lights?
    not just on the outside either, but on the inside too! What, you want people to think we're amateurs?

    this is the kind of polish I expect..


  56. #56
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    any way, enough of those ridiculously overblinged Chinese cars, here's the sled all wired up


    note to self, don't be a numbnuts and wire the driver in place BEFORE sticking it down with its thermal pad. What a PITA that was.

    managed to hack up the optics holders (Laura RS in white, CXP RS in black) which fittingly were a piece of cake to locate over the LED (Laura) or a pain in the neck (CXP, had add a couple of layers of electricians tape). I don't care what the beam of the CXP RS looks like, no way am I using it again.


    and underexposed


    thankfully it all works - always the scariest moment in building a light!

    now I have to find a pristine CD case to hack up into protective lens covers (CXP RS also has a big hole in it ) and build the remote.

  57. #57
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    489
    Beautiful! That's some tidy wiring

  58. #58
    Rep Power Infinity +2
    Reputation: brad72's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    1,538
    It's Alive.........well done mate. It's always a relief when light beams from those leds the first time it is powered up.

  59. #59
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by Toaster79 View Post
    Beautiful! That's some tidy wiring
    thanks! That's one reason why I like making these sled lights; they really make it easy to do tidy wiring as it's easy to get to everything. Oh, and I also chose the picture angle so you wouldn't see the shoddy stuff on the other side

  60. #60
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by brad72 View Post
    It's Alive.........well done mate. It's always a relief when light beams from those leds the first time it is powered up.
    cheers Scarily, it didn't light up the first time I connected the pack, only the STAT LED. I choose to ignore that fact, stuck the optic on and then tried again and it worked. Only explanation I can think of is that the battery came out of the fridge and needed time to warm up.

  61. #61
    A waste of time it is is
    Reputation: emu26's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    3,283
    Quote Originally Posted by mattthemuppet View Post
    cheers Scarily, it didn't light up the first time I connected the pack, only the STAT LED. I choose to ignore that fact, stuck the optic on and then tried again and it worked. Only explanation I can think of is that the battery came out of the fridge and needed time to warm up.
    I had that happen on the last light I built. Was rushing to get it finished before I went away for a 24hr event, ended up leaving it at home because I didn't have time to fix it. When I got home it worked Spent a bit of time going over it but found an intermittent short. Glad I did because it would certainly have played up on the trail. Go over everything again, just to be on the safe side.

    Nice light, well done

  62. #62
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    thanks, I'll do that.

    Didn't get anything done last night, other than raid Ingrid's CD collection for unscratched cases.

  63. #63
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342

    finally, it is done

    as always, the last few steps are the hardest, but it's finally done.

    Here's a breakdown of making the remote. Taking my hand of the bars to adjust the light setting is a pain, particularly on the rocky trails I ride, so when I saw Goldigger or Troutie (or someone else, my memory's crap) fashioning one out of an old Taskled momentary switch, I figured I'd have a go.

    Body is made out of a alu offcut - I have loads of these left over


    Switch is 5min epoxied to the underside


    so that the switch pokes through the top


    then, the magic ingredient - thermoplastic! Big thanks to Of'roadbent for the gift

    Starts hard


    few minutes in my wife's coffee cup with some hot water and I shall call him Squishy


    some frantic molding and shaping with my garden trowel and... ta da!



    some spare innertube and the eponymous 5min epoxy, plus an O-ring scrounged from the LBS:

  64. #64
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    money *ahem* shot of Dame Edna (gah, that's a horrible thought)


    and ze back

  65. #65
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    now the battery

    wired up


    cables Sugru'd


    first wrap of marine tape (from Home Depot, ~$13 I think)


    several wraps later (I used 30in in total, out of 10ft)


    then the velcro strap added and 3 coats of plastidip later


    I just need to find a vacuum plug or something that fits over the balance port. The battery is 3S2P 4.8Ah, so should last 2 to 2 1/2h on full power.

    Now I need to get some beam shots and take it into work to weigh it.

  66. #66
    Rep Power Infinity +2
    Reputation: brad72's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    1,538
    Nice work Mat . Has she been out for the maiden voyage yet.

  67. #67
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    126
    Looking good Matt!

    I'm about to do the same thing (2 XML, regina sled build) and need some help on the wiring. I have done a quick sketch of how i think it goes, but would like some input from the seasoned light DIY builders.

    I understand the H6Flex has a 1400mA minimium output. Is there a way i can wire it so each XML gets 700mA as this would be ideal for a low beam. Then medium could be 1400mA (half 2800mA) and high 1800mA (half 3600mA). Can i do this?

    Cheers, D.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  68. #68
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    33
    As I understand it, 1.4A is the minimum 'High' level - if you set it to 1.4A max, then there will be a few levels of brightness between 50mA and 1.4A:

    I'm not yet worthy of posting a link, but here's the table from the tasked site:

    Level 1400mA 2000mA 2800mA 3600mA 5000mA 5600mA 6600mA
    L1 50mA 50mA 50mA 50mA 50mA 50mA 50mA
    L2 116mA 116mA 220mA 220mA 250mA 307mA 505mA
    L3 311mA 450mA 730mA 937mA 1105mA 1420mA 1620mA
    L4 680mA 1020mA 1593mA 2022mA 2450mA 3000mA 3377mA
    L5 1420mA 2022mA 2800mA 3610mA 5040mA 5640mA 6570mA

    Also, the momentary switch and battery power each have two leads going to the driver - your diagram shows an on / off switch for the battery.

  69. #69
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by brad72 View Post
    Nice work Mat . Has she been out for the maiden voyage yet.
    not yet, although there are a lot of surprised/ blind rabbits in our back garden now. As long as we don't get a thunderstorm Thursday night I'll be taking it out for a spin then. I'll have to wait until it's properly dark so my mates are suitably impressed

  70. #70
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by damian777 View Post
    Looking good Matt!

    I'm about to do the same thing (2 XML, regina sled build) and need some help on the wiring. I have done a quick sketch of how i think it goes, but would like some input from the seasoned light DIY builders.

    I understand the H6Flex has a 1400mA minimium output. Is there a way i can wire it so each XML gets 700mA as this would be ideal for a low beam. Then medium could be 1400mA (half 2800mA) and high 1800mA (half 3600mA). Can i do this?

    Cheers, D.
    pretty much what bob ^ said - took me a few attempts to figure this out too. You set the max drive current (L5), then the driver uses a fixed table of current figures for L1>4, depending on the max current you selected. So if you select 3A for L5 (those figures above are for the older hipflex), L4 will be ~1.8A. If you want a dimmer medium mode, L3 will give ~800mA which would suit you perfectly.

    I almost always use threemode L1>L4-L5, where clicking switches between L4 and L5, with a press to go back to L1 when I stop or need some light for getting something out of my pack. I might use L3 for medium, depends on how much I annoy my riding buddies with my new light

  71. #71
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    126
    Ahhh, thanks guys. Makes sence now i read the guff on the H6Flex.

    So the mom. switch gets wired to SWA and SWB on the driver? Battery to IN+ and IN- and LED's wired in series between LED+ and LED-?

  72. #72
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    33
    Quote Originally Posted by damian777 View Post
    Ahhh, thanks guys. Makes sence now i read the guff on the H6Flex.

    So the mom. switch gets wired to SWA and SWB on the driver? Battery to IN+ and IN- and LED's wired in series between LED+ and LED-?
    Looks correct. You'll need a 2S ( 8.4V) battery to run 2 XM-L in series.

  73. #73
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    126
    Ah, I have a problem. What do i do when running 2 XML's from 18V?

  74. #74
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    33
    Quote Originally Posted by damian777 View Post
    Ah, I have a problem. What do i do when running 2 XML's from 18V?
    Get two or three more XM-Ls and a pair of really dark sunglasses.

  75. #75
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    126
    Sorry for the thread hijack Matt . . .

    so, will the H6Flex driver not "buck" 18V down to the vf of the LED circuit?

    I thought i had it sussed until today.

  76. #76
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    33
    Quote Originally Posted by damian777 View Post
    Sorry for the thread hijack Matt . . .

    so, will the H6Flex driver not "buck" 18V down to the vf of the LED circuit?

    I thought i had it sussed until today.
    Yeah - hijacking is bad form, but anyone who sees the Dane Edna light as high art (myself included) won't be all that bent from a hijack. After this start a new thread, or do a quick search here and or on candlepower forums.

    A buck driver will typically drop the voltage by one volt, so you'll be way overvolting 2 XM-Ls with an 18V batt. The magic of a buck convertor is how it efficiently steps down the current by turning full current on and off really quickly. Whoever invented the PWM deserves a Nobel Prize. Or at least a cookie.

    Stepping down DC voltage from 18 to 8.4V will dissipate quite a bit of heat, so with an H6Flex (or any buck converter) get a lover V battery or add more diodes in series.

  77. #77
    Rep Power Infinity +2
    Reputation: brad72's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    1,538
    Like bobtogorg said, the h6flex driver can drive a single led from a 5s battery (21v fully charged) but all that extra voltage and current will be turned into heat in the driver and give pretty awfull efficiency.

    Like all buck drivers the greatest efficiency comes from using a battery pack as close to the led forward voltage (vf) + 1 volt overhead to keep the driver in regulation. For eg a 3s led light will run best from a 14.8 v pack, staying in regulation for the entire battery discharge curve.

  78. #78
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    752
    Quote Originally Posted by brad72 View Post
    Like bobtogorg said, the h6flex driver can drive a single led from a 5s battery (21v fully charged) but all that extra voltage and current will be turned into heat in the driver and give pretty awfull efficiency.
    Your statement would be correct for a linear regulator, but is not entirely correct for a switching buck regulator. A buck regulator will have a slightly better efficiency when the battery voltage is close to the output voltage, and the efficiency will fall about 4-5% when you start dropping more than a couple of volts between the battery voltage and LED voltage, but that drop in efficiency stays about the same as you go to even higher voltages.

    In general, a buck driver is always move efficient driving multiple LEDs vs a single LED. That's because a lot of the losses in a buck driver are fixed voltage losses such as diode losses. When you drive a single LED with a high differential input vs output voltage, the diode loss in the freewheel path starts to dominate and you don't get great efficiency. But that case is a double whammy because you're getting hit with a few % loss from the single LED case, and a few % loss from the high differential voltage.

    Driving a single LED off a h6Flex isn't terribly efficient even when the differential voltage is fairly low and in most case you would be better off using an Lflex for a single LED. Driving 2 XMLs with a h6flex, even off a 21v battery, will be over 90% efficient which isn't bad.
    Last edited by MtbMacgyver; 06-22-2011 at 06:27 AM.

  79. #79
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    33
    Quote Originally Posted by MtbMacgyver View Post
    Driving a single LED off a L6Flex isn't terribly efficient even when the differential voltage is fairly low and in most case you would be better off using an Lflex for a single LED. Driving 2 XMLs with a h6flex, even off a 21v battery, will be over 90% efficient which isn't bad.
    Really? I'm knowingly continuing to participate in hijacking the H.M.S. Dame Edna thread, but I was under the distinct impression that an H6Flex would spew heat if one tried to inject a 21V battery into two, three point something volt Vf diodes.

    My EE exposure is decades old, but (I hope) the fundamentals are true. If I'm wrong, please be brutal in pointing out my error.

    Having said that, it's first light here in L.A., so I'm off for a Runyon Canyon loop.

  80. #80
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    752
    Quote Originally Posted by bobdotorg View Post
    Really? I'm knowingly continuing to participate in hijacking the H.M.S. Dame Edna thread, but I was under the distinct impression that an H6Flex would spew heat if one tried to inject a 21V battery into two, three point something volt Vf diodes.

    My EE exposure is decades old, but (I hope) the fundamentals are true. If I'm wrong, please be brutal in pointing out my error.

    Having said that, it's first light here in L.A., so I'm off for a Runyon Canyon loop.
    Sound like you think the h6flex is a linear regulator like the lflex, in which case your statement would be correct. The h6flex is a switching regulator.

  81. #81
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    33
    Quote Originally Posted by MtbMacgyver View Post
    Sound like you think the h6flex is a linear regulator like the lflex, in which case your statement would be correct. The h6flex is a switching regulator.
    OK - I'm highly intelligent, but easily confused.

    And this is my tenth post mofos. So now I can post links.

    But I'm curious, slightly confused, and too lazy to look up the answer before hopping in the shower and taking a SoCal June Gloom nap.

    Is the H6Flex linear, or switching, or both? My understanding is that it drops V by 1, no matter what Vin. It can vary A via PWM, but Vout is always about one volt less than Vin.

  82. #82
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    no worries on the thread hijack

    as others above have said, the h6flex (and b2flex) are buck or step down switching regulators, so the battery voltage has to be LED voltage string + 1v for overhead, eg. 2S LEDs need minimum 3S battery, 3S needs 4S min. Battery voltage maximum is 21V IIRC for the h6flex. Now, if you ran a 2S LED string with a 2S li-ion pack, you'd still be fine, but the battery would go out of regulation about halfway through the discharge curve. This means that the LED would be direct driven (no voltage adjustment by the driver) and as it discharges further the LED would dim (as battery voltage dips below the LED string voltage).

    Now, linear regulators are essentially fancy resistors that burn of the difference between Vin and Vf as heat - so 1 LED with 1 li-ion is fine, 1 LED with 2 li-ion is very bad (bigger the difference, the greater the heat).

    Then there are boost regulators, which increase the voltage from the battery to the voltage of the LED string, so that a 2S battery can drive a 3S LED string - the maxflex is a good example of this.

    tricky to get your head around, but in summary:

    Buck: battery cell count = LED number + 1
    Linear: battery cell count = LED number (no >2)
    Boost: battery cell count = LED number - 1
    Last edited by mattthemuppet; 06-22-2011 at 08:54 AM. Reason: I'm a bloody idiot and should be shot

  83. #83
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    33
    Quote Originally Posted by mattthemuppet View Post
    no worries on the thread hijack
    {SNiP]
    tricky to get your head around, but in summary:

    Buck: battery cell count = LED number + 1
    Linear: battery cell count = LED number (no >2)
    Buck: battery cell count = LED number - 1
    I'm going to guess that that last line was meant to be 'boost'

  84. #84
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    crap. thanks for keeping me honest

  85. #85
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    33
    Quote Originally Posted by mattthemuppet View Post
    crap. thanks for keeping me honest
    Anyone who spends dozens of hours methodically grasping and and then trimming and polishing Dame Edna's unnecessary bits has no need to be honest. Deeds speak louder than words.

    For those about to light the hillside, we salute you.

    (I have _got_ to stop posting after staying up all night. Goddam grad school encourages bad posting habits.)

  86. #86
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    126
    Thanks for your input fellas.

    So in summary:

    vf of 2 XML in series = 6.7V
    + 1V for overhead = 7.7V
    Therefor minimum voltage in H6Flex = 7.7V

    so, 18V into the H6Flex is ok but efficiency will not be quite as good.

    Hijacking over

  87. #87
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Quote Originally Posted by damian777 View Post
    Thanks for your input fellas.

    Therefor minimum voltage in H6Flex = 7.7V

    so, 18V into the H6Flex is ok but efficiency will not be quite as good.

    Hijacking over
    that's right. So a 3S pack will always be in regulation (9V at full discharge) whereas a 2S pack will go out of regulation under 7.7V (6V at full discharge).

    As mtbmcguyver said far more eruditely above, I don't think 18V for a twin LED light will be a problem, you'll just be carrying around a far bigger and heavier battery than you need to.

  88. #88
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    some beamshots, sadly on wet grass (hey, at least it wasn't in the rain)

    see all of them here for comparison. Just Dame Edna:


    CXP-RS alone

    Laura-RS alone


    as you can imagine, I'm pretty pleased

    all grass (wet, sorry) pics were AWB, ISO200, 2s exposure. All side-of-garage pics were AWB, everything else auto

  89. #89
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    321
    Quote Originally Posted by mattthemuppet on another thread View Post
    My new light has a cobbled together remote and it's awesome. You can even do "helmet slap" remotes for helmet lights.
    Hey Matt, I can now picture you wearing Dame Edna, while you ride along slapping the side of your head.

    I am hoping you annodise Dame Edna in an appropriate colour, say blue rinse or purple & add some diamantes. Don't forget to post a head slapping video

  90. #90
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    ha ha, yeah, the helmet slapping would probably be me trying to change light modes before going over the handlebars onto some rocks. No way I would wear Dame Edna on my head though, far too heavy.

    given the raised eyebrows I get at what I do in the garage already, I don't think anodising would be that great an idea. That and the fact that I'm excessively accident prone..

  91. #91
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mattthemuppet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,342
    Just to give an update, I took Dame Edna out for her first ride last Thursday.

    Wow, a simply insane amount of light, so much so that there didn't seem to be a huge difference between L4 (1.7A?) and L5 (3A). Beautiful beam pattern too, very smooth, just the right amount of side spill and a nicely graduated hotspot. Having it on the bars made an enormous difference to my riding as our trails are incredibly rocky and I always struggled to pick out a good line through the rocks with just a helmet light. Now they all had enormous black shadows, so I couldn't miss them. Didn't go over the bars once!

    No issue with heat, though I ran it at L4 most of the time (though I'm thinking of dropping it to L3, just so I can see the difference in levels), cable was cool, didn't even dent the battery pack's capacity. It also paired well with with my helmet light (XP-G R5 and XM-L T6 with Reginas @1.2A, so ~750Lm) although it did make it seem a bit dim in comparison. I might have to replace that XP-G with an XM-L and bump the power to 1.5A

    Next build is an Easy2LED light (the housing won from the recent poll) for a friend.

Similar Threads

  1. New guy that finally got a real bike
    By RBOD in forum Beginner's Corner
    Replies: 19
    Last Post: 08-18-2009, 02:35 PM
  2. Replies: 11
    Last Post: 07-07-2009, 07:35 AM
  3. Freeing EBRPD for real parks and real trails; here's how
    By imtnbke in forum California - Norcal
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 05-03-2009, 12:59 PM
  4. Finally got our bikes! (First real hardtails)
    By boxjoint in forum Beginner's Corner
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 10-17-2008, 06:10 PM
  5. Finally! The REAL reason for TnT.
    By ryeder in forum Turner
    Replies: 28
    Last Post: 10-24-2005, 07:20 AM

Members who have read this thread: 0

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •