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  1. #151
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    DX has sold out out of the driver - do you know of any alternatives?
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  2. #152
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    Quote Originally Posted by Muscleflex View Post
    DX has sold out out of the driver - do you know of any alternatives?
    See page 3, post# 52
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  3. #153
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    Hey awesome! Thank you!

    Can I get all the parts from DX? Instead of different places especially the LED?
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  4. #154
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    Quote Originally Posted by Muscleflex View Post
    Hey awesome! Thank you!

    Can I get all the parts from DX? Instead of different places especially the LED?
    You can get all the electronic parts from DX as well as the LED. But the parts for the housing can not be bought at DX so use the two companies from page 1.
    "By Your Command"

  5. #155
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    From these great ideas I have modified it somewhat. I cut both the coupler and plug in half which allows plenty of space for the optics, star, and driver. I then capped the end with pvc plug. With battery connecting wire but without switch (coming soon) it only weighs 75 gms and is 4 cm long. Also cut some grooves in coupler for better heat transfer.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Very Easy XM-L Build-img_0133.jpg  

    Very Easy XM-L Build-img_0134.jpg  


  6. #156
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    Quote Originally Posted by pucked up View Post
    You can get all the electronic parts from DX as well as the LED. But the parts for the housing can not be bought at DX so use the two companies from page 1.
    Thanks. Any chance of a link? I know nothing about LEDs - or is there a specific model/type/spec I should be looking for?
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  7. #157
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    Quote Originally Posted by mfos View Post
    From these great ideas I have modified it somewhat. I cut both the coupler and plug in half which allows plenty of space for the optics, star, and driver. I then capped the end with pvc plug. With battery connecting wire but without switch (coming soon) it only weighs 75 gms and is 4 cm long. Also cut some grooves in coupler for better heat transfer.
    That looks neat!
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  8. #158
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    Quote Originally Posted by mfos View Post
    From these great ideas I have modified it somewhat. I cut both the coupler and plug in half which allows plenty of space for the optics, star, and driver. I then capped the end with pvc plug. With battery connecting wire but without switch (coming soon) it only weighs 75 gms and is 4 cm long. Also cut some grooves in coupler for better heat transfer.
    Nice job.
    By making it that compact you may be able to attach the mounting to the rear cap. That way you can mount it toward the front of your helmet, pointing straight out, similar to some of the Niterider models.
    This would keep everything nice and low.
    Last edited by roxtar; 11-28-2012 at 08:02 AM.
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  9. #159
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    Quote Originally Posted by mfos View Post
    From these great ideas I have modified it somewhat. I cut both the coupler and plug in half which allows plenty of space for the optics, star, and driver. I then capped the end with pvc plug. With battery connecting wire but without switch (coming soon) it only weighs 75 gms and is 4 cm long. Also cut some grooves in coupler for better heat transfer.

    Nice! I wish I had the gear to cut grooves into the coupler.

    Give us an update when it's all done.
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  10. #160
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    Quote Originally Posted by Muscleflex View Post
    Thanks. Any chance of a link? I know nothing about LEDs - or is there a specific model/type/spec I should be looking for?
    I don't have any links on DX for the LEDs as I did not get mine from there. If you want to get your LEDs from DX, I would stick with XM-L Leds.
    "By Your Command"

  11. #161
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  12. #162
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    Quote Originally Posted by mfos View Post
    From these great ideas I have modified it somewhat. I cut both the coupler and plug in half which allows plenty of space for the optics, star, and driver. I then capped the end with pvc plug. With battery connecting wire but without switch (coming soon) it only weighs 75 gms and is 4 cm long. Also cut some grooves in coupler for better heat transfer.
    I planned on doing something similar. I figured I would use a plastic rear plug, too (cuz the aluminum ones are so expensive) and was thinking of cutting the grooves. I have a wood lathe with a crappy cross-slide, and I think I can cut grooves. I didn't think about shortening the whole thing, but my aluminum parts aren't here yet to play with. How cramped is it with 1/2 the body length?
    I ordered it all from Zorotools, and it shouyld be here today or tomorrow. I have all the electronic parts.

  13. #163
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    Thank you! I'm on my way!
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  14. #164
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    Quote Originally Posted by Muscleflex View Post
    Thank you! I'm on my way!
    Keep in mind, many are looking for ways to cut out DX, not add to what they get from them.
    Shipping times from DX average about 2-3 weeks in my experience. That's the cost for their prices
    Democracy is two wolves and a sheep voting on what's for dinner.
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  15. #165
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    Continued build

    Here is the completed build. Plenty of room for switch and wires so I ran the battery wire thru the bottom as the only switch I had was moderately large and it was easier to just mount it in the back plastic cap. Notice that I cut down both the threads and back of the cap. Completed unit without battery weighs 80 grams. I used EL134's driver which is simple small,cheap, and which I have set for 3 modes.
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  16. #166
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    Nice!

    What did you use to mount it to your helmet strap?

    Also, what did you use to cut the parts? Table saw? Ban saw?
    "By Your Command"

  17. #167
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    I use the Marwi mounts and I found these aluminum rods which fit perfectly. They have male end and female end. Found them at local hardware store in drawer marked "screen door" parts. I then just drilled hole in middle of rod and in coupler and mounted with screw.

    As for equipment, I cut off the coupler and plugs with a lathe, but it could be done easily with a course toothed hacksaw and then the cut trued with aluminum file (a great and useful tool).
    I held the pieces easily by screwing them onto a steel pipe.

    Took the light for it's first ride last nite and it did great. In the 40's and just got a little warm to the touch. I have built several lights including using the Easy2LED units and this is much easier to work with, cheaper,.just as light, and more room to work in. . It is very nice not to do the soldering in a hole. The moveable heat sink is great!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Very Easy XM-L Build-img_0138.jpg  


  18. #168
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    Just finished mine:



    I machined a different body to work with my replay camera mount.

    Thanks again, pucked
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  19. #169
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    Nice looking light roxtar but I would be really careful trying to fly anywhere with that thing. DId someone say pipe b0mb?

    I flew to NZ last year for a couple of days of riding with a large group of mates. On the way home we are sitting in Rotorua airport waiting to board and my name gets called out to come to security. Whilst they knew I had a bike bag they didn't like the profile the xray returned of my luggage bag that contained my batteries and all of the leads. Once I confirmed that it was what they expected, batteries for my bike lights, and emptied my luggage to show them there was no problem and they were very relaxed about it all.

  20. #170
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    Would this be a good switch for this project?
    Component - Switch: switch with 13.2V regulator & LED Indicator for HID Bike-lighting (1' long)

    Also, is the Trailtech connector shown here the same as the Magicshine shown here?
    Action-LED-Lights — 1m Extension Cable
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  21. #171
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    Quote Originally Posted by mfos View Post
    Here is the completed build. Plenty of room for switch and wires so I ran the battery wire thru the bottom as the only switch I had was moderately large and it was easier to just mount it in the back plastic cap. Notice that I cut down both the threads and back of the cap. Completed unit without battery weighs 80 grams. I used EL134's driver which is simple small,cheap, and which I have set for 3 modes.
    First off, awesome write-up phucked. Thanks!

    mfos - Nice play on the design. I am interested in your power modifications. First off, what battery you are using and the wiring choice. I assume that battery is rechargeable? What is it and what time do you get on high power? I like that style of plug. I thought about using SAE but your choice is smaller. What did you use?

    I liked phucked's idea of 4 batts but would prefer a more weather tight/durable case for the batteries since I tend to fall from time to time retaining the ability to charge of course.

    Pretty new to the battery thing and could use some direction.

  22. #172
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    Battery /Wire choice

    I am a weight weenie so am going for the most simple setup that is cheap to make. For helmet lights I use one Li-Ion 18650 3.6v battery (yes it is rechargeable) which gives me about an hour on high (2800ma) and more than three hours on medium (800ma). I carry a spare battery to use if needed. The photo shows battery prior to being coated with Plasti Dip.

    For Bar light use same setup but have a 2 battery pack. The combo gives me plenty of light.
    In fact when I get back to the vehicle the truck lights look dim by comparison.

    The connectors are MS connectors and can be found on DX. I get the ones with the split connector as this lets me do an extra battery.
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  23. #173
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    mfos - Love your helmet battery. Makes perfect sense to keep it lightweight. I assume you are soldering the leads onto the batteries. Any issues w/ doing this? I have heard others say this isn't an issue w/ a decent powered solder station, just wondering if you have any tips. Thanks.

  24. #174
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    Quote Originally Posted by mfos View Post
    I am a weight weenie so am going for the most simple setup that is cheap to make. For helmet lights I use one Li-Ion 18650 3.6v battery (yes it is rechargeable) which gives me about an hour on high (2800ma) and more than three hours on medium (800ma). I carry a spare battery to use if needed. The photo shows battery prior to being coated with Plasti Dip.

    For Bar light use same setup but have a 2 battery pack. The combo gives me plenty of light.
    In fact when I get back to the vehicle the truck lights look dim by comparison.

    The connectors are MS connectors and can be found on DX. I get the ones with the split connector as this lets me do an extra battery.
    Thanks my friend. Just what I needed.

    Nice and simple... easy on the head and a spare could be switched out easily. I guess it depends on light output. Meaning, if you went 2s1p would your light be brighter?

  25. #175
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    mfos - Love your helmet battery. Makes perfect sense to keep it lightweight. I assume you are soldering the leads onto the batteries. Any issues w/ doing this? I have heard others say this isn't an issue w/ a decent powered solder station, just wondering if you have any tips. Thanks.
    Not a problem ANDY13. Just work quickly and of course use eye protection.

    Nice and simple... easy on the head and a spare could be switched out easily. I guess it depends on light output. Meaning, if you went 2s1p would your light be brighter?
    TJWilly - Others would be much more knowledgeable than me about this but it is my understanding that brightness is a determined more by amperage than voltage which is determined by settings in the driver. One LED drawing 2800ma uses one battery faster than two.....etc. Lots of good expert discussions here on that on these forums. My driver only supports 3.6v (charged to 4.2v) and a high setting drawing 2800ma., so I keep it simple.

  26. #176
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    Hi There
    Im new to charging 18650's can I use a Swallow EQ Charger i have for model planes to charge a pack fof 4x 2800mah @ 14.4 V in the battery holder mentioned here in this thread?

  27. #177
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    Had some time over the weekend, I didn't do any biking so I build a couple more lights. This time I ended up using some parts I didn't use in the original build. I replace the Cup 2 slug at the bottom with the sliding closet door thingy that's on page one with a cable gland through it.



    Basically I drilled a 1/2" hole into the closet door thing so that the cable gland would fit through it. Sanded out some of the retaining nut from the gland so it would fit inside the depression of the closet thingy. Lock the gland into place and place it into the light body. You'll have to lighty hammer out some of the closet thingy sides to make it stay in place. Everything else is the same.

    These were parts I had that I couldn't use on my first build. I wanted to put the cable gland through the Cup 2 but was too thick. I would have to cut the Cup 2 but can't seem to find my hacksaw!

    The cable gland was bought from DX, 10 pack was about $5.

    It's great to see the different ideas people come up with, with this build. Great Job!
    "By Your Command"

  28. #178
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    Quote Originally Posted by TJWilly View Post
    Meaning, if you went 2s1p would your light be brighter?
    If you use a 2S1P pack with the driver that mfos is using, you'll burn it out as it can only have an input voltage of 3.7V (4.2v fully charged). The number of batteries you use will depend on the driver you use. The driver I use in this build will take anywhere from 6v - 18v.

    So if you use a 2S1P with this build, you'll get about 2hrs run time on high. Using a 4S1P will double that, give or take.

    If you want the light to be brighter, that'll depend on the drivers output. A driver with a 3000mA output will be brighter that one that only has a 2000mA output. The driver on this build was measured by machine and it puts out about 2300mA, which is more than enough for me.
    "By Your Command"

  29. #179
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    Quote Originally Posted by mfos View Post

    TJWilly - Others would be much more knowledgeable than me about this but it is my understanding that brightness is a determined more by amperage than voltage which is determined by settings in the driver. One LED drawing 2800ma uses one battery faster than two.....etc. Lots of good expert discussions here on that on these forums. My driver only supports 3.6v (charged to 4.2v) and a high setting drawing 2800ma., so I keep it simple.
    Quote Originally Posted by pucked up View Post
    If you use a 2S1P pack with the driver that mfos is using, you'll burn it out as it can only have an input voltage of 3.7V (4.2v fully charged). The number of batteries you use will depend on the driver you use. The driver I use in this build will take anywhere from 6v - 18v.

    So if you use a 2S1P with this build, you'll get about 2hrs run time on high. Using a 4S1P will double that, give or take.

    If you want the light to be brighter, that'll depend on the drivers output. A driver with a 3000mA output will be brighter that one that only has a 2000mA output. The driver on this build was measured by machine and it puts out about 2300mA, which is more than enough for me.
    Thanks guys. I understand now.

  30. #180
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    you guys will need to start selling these as i'd love to have one!!!
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  31. #181
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    Quote Originally Posted by Muscleflex View Post
    you guys will need to start selling these as i'd love to have one!!!
    I was thinking of selling them at first. But after looking at some options from overseas, it would not be in my best interest to do so. I'll most likely loose time / money in the end. Which is why I just laid it all out for everyone to build their own.
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  32. #182
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    Yay for chinas ability to demotivate the little guy for once it helped.

    Im pretty thankfull you posted the build. Got the ball rolling for me to get my feet wet.

    If your ever near collingwood or owensound, let me know. We can gonfor a ride.

  33. #183
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    Quote Originally Posted by machine4321 View Post
    Yay for chinas ability to demotivate the little guy for once it helped.

    Im pretty thankfull you posted the build. Got the ball rolling for me to get my feet wet.

    If your ever near collingwood or owensound, let me know. We can gonfor a ride.
    Wasn't really demotivated. Just wasn't worth my time selling. For me to sell these say for around $100 + shipping, you can get some nice lights at that price from Action LED or GloWorm.

    Glad everyone that has tried this build has been successful so far. The hardest part is waiting for parts to arrive from DX!

    I'll let you know if and when I'll be in Collingwood, may not be for another six months bike wise. Time to get my snowboard out!

    Hmmm...night snowboarding?
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  34. #184
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    [B]Panasonic 18650 update[B\]

    I got some quality brand cells (Panasonic 3100mah protected 18650) from DX. I learn that these are real Panasonic's cell which another company then installs the PCB on them. This info can be found here .

    I only test the run times on high and the results are:

    4 cells - 4.75hrs
    3 cells - 3hrs 50mins

    Test was done in front of a fan running on medium and light body was cool to the touch.

    Sorry no test for 2 cells, I do not have a 2 cell battery holder. But I would say you'll get a little over 2hrs run time on them. Overall not bad.

    Is it worth the extra price? That's up to you.

    4 x Panasonic 3100mah cells = $35.20 (4.75hrs run time)
    4 x Trustfire 2500mah cells = $13.88 (3.5hrs run time, rounded up)
    Difference = $21.32 (1.25hrs)

    With the driver I use for this build only pushing out ~2300ma I would likely stay with the Trustfire cells. If the driver was pushing out ~2500 - 3000ma I would go with the Panasonic cells for the longer run times.

    Future test: Taskled driver, sometime next year. Maybe!
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  35. #185
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    Thanks for the runtimes on the better cells. I am going to try the 3x xml ebay cheapy with a task led at 3amp and an 8 cell pack(I like at least 3 hours for night rides as we tend to explore)

    For the price of the trustfires they have very decent run times.

  36. #186
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    Has anyone found a good USA source for 18650s that are reasonably priced? Reading about an issue with China and airfreight with Li-Ion batteries may mean a delay???? (this was in the other light forum about BAK batteries)

    I ordered stuff from DX over 3 weeks ago and still hasn't showed up..... hopefully before Christmas so I can tinker on my first light. (driver and switch) Can't imagine how much more of a delay with the Li-Ion news.....

    I haven't ordered any battery components and won't until I have a driver in hand, just incase it doesn't show up! Darn- I should have ordered the batteries 3 weeks ago with the rest
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  37. #187
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    Quote Originally Posted by beecrazy View Post
    Has anyone found a good USA source for 18650s that are reasonably priced? Reading about an issue with China and airfreight with Li-Ion batteries may mean a delay???? (this was in the other light forum about BAK batteries)
    I got these sources from another thread here. I haven't purchased from them since I'm currently well-stocked on DX batteries, but may get a couple Panasonics in the near future.

    2 Panasonic 3100s for $19 seems decent, with free shipping:
    New 2X Panasonic 18650 3 6V 3100mAh Rechargeable Li ion Battery 2 NCR Batteries | eBay

    (^^There is a link to the protected version of these cells in the ad.)

    Lower prices here, even with shipping, and there are options for higher or lower capacities:
    ONLY BATTERY ORDERS for YOUR BLF US-BASED BATTERY SUPPLIER | BudgetLightForum.com

  38. #188
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    Delete because not available
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  39. #189
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    Quote Originally Posted by random walk View Post
    I got these sources from another thread here. I haven't purchased from them since I'm currently well-stocked on DX batteries, but may get a couple Panasonics in the near future.

    2 Panasonic 3100s for $19 seems decent, with free shipping:
    New 2X Panasonic 18650 3 6V 3100mAh Rechargeable Li ion Battery 2 NCR Batteries | eBay

    (^^There is a link to the protected version of these cells in the ad.)

    Lower prices here, even with shipping, and there are options for higher or lower capacities:
    ONLY BATTERY ORDERS for YOUR BLF US-BASED BATTERY SUPPLIER | BudgetLightForum.com
    Thanks for the quick reply, and thank you Pucked Up for kick starting my new obsession!

    I am looking forward to Very Easy XM-L Build turned not so easy....
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  40. #190
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    Quote Originally Posted by beecrazy View Post
    Thanks for the quick reply, and thank you Pucked Up for kick starting my new obsession!

    I am looking forward to Very Easy XM-L Build turned not so easy....
    The BLF seller can't ship outside USA.

  41. #191
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    Deal extreme is a joke, I highly recommend you find another source. I ordered parts from them and the envelope was stuffed so full that it tore open before landing in my mail box. I lost over 40 in inventory and they want me to ask the USPS for compensation. Then the USPS is blaming the envelope being too full. Its a huge circle jerk and I'm at the back, I'm taking my business elsewhere. On a side note, OP thanks for the sweet post. Its posts like this that make mtbr enjoyable.
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  42. #192
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ofroad'bent View Post
    The BLF seller can't ship outside USA.
    Yeah, I wish they would to ship to Canada, cause I would buy from them in a sec!


    One thing I learn from buying from DX is to break up your order. It free shipping, so try not to have everything in one big order. 3pks of batteries is the most I would put in one order. Then create another order that is next on my list. Also I think this is their busy season so orders may take a little longer to get here!

    You guys are lucky that you're only waiting weeks. One of my orders took 3mths to arrive!
    "By Your Command"

  43. #193
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    Pucked, if we needed to we should organize a big US order some time and get one of our buddies to ship it over to Ontario. We could do Cateye mounts, DigiKey battery holders, BLF batteries...
    I've had to find various solutions over the years.

    I wish someone like Zemike could put things like this on his online store, so at least we could order from one place.

  44. #194
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ofroad'bent View Post
    Pucked, if we needed to we should organize a big US order some time and get one of our buddies to ship it over to Ontario. We could do Cateye mounts, DigiKey battery holders, BLF batteries...
    I've had to find various solutions over the years.

    I wish someone like Zemike could put things like this on his online store, so at least we could order from one place.

    Sounds like a plan. I will not be needing anything until sometime next year. My building for this year is done.
    "By Your Command"

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    If I wanted to run two of these from one driver what would you recommend, also would I just run the batteries as 4S2P?

  46. #196
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    Does the DX driver in this build have temp sensing capability?
    Democracy is two wolves and a sheep voting on what's for dinner.
    Liberty is a well armed sheep, contesting the vote.

  47. #197
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    Quote Originally Posted by KonCorp View Post
    If I wanted to run two of these from one driver what would you recommend, also would I just run the batteries as 4S2P?
    You could run them that way, you'll have to wire up the two leds together. Is the purpose to use only one battery pack? If so, it may be easier to build two sets of lights, each with it's own driver and get the Y adapter so you can run both lights with only one battery pack. I use this when I ride with 2 lights on my bars.


    Quote Originally Posted by roxtar View Post
    Does the DX driver in this build have temp sensing capability?
    I don't think the DX driver has that feature, but I could be wrong.
    "By Your Command"

  48. #198
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    Quote Originally Posted by pucked up View Post
    You could run them that way, you'll have to wire up the two leds together. Is the purpose to use only one battery pack? If so, it may be easier to build two sets of lights, each with it's own driver and get the Y adapter so you can run both lights with only one battery pack. I use this when I ride with 2 lights on my bars.
    I was looking at building up a different housing that would hold two xml leds. I will just make a new thread as not to take this one off topic. Thanks

  49. #199
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    Hey everyone... I finished my build a few days ago. Finally got to ride tonight.

    I am impressed.

    My observations:

    1. One 2400mah battery gave me 40 something mins on high before the lamp dropped to low which is hardly usable.
    2. I used the 20mm Carlco 12.4° optics. I find with my build this to be really nice at throwing light on the trail, however, I could still use more of a spot.
    3. This is the driver I am using: https://illuminationsupply.com/8xamc...ver-p-142.html
    4. For power, I have the blue UltraFire 2400mah batts. (sourced from Amazon.com)
    5. My build is 4oz with out batteries. My (new) 3 battery pack weighs 5.5oz with a longer cable to stash in the pack.

    I used this light only. No bar light or anything else and I could ride our tight single track with zero visibility issues. (I brought a spare battery pack (a single) and switched to it along the way.) But my little light seems better suited on a bar.

    If I ever find my battery charger for the Nikon 3100, I'll take some proper beam pics.

    Can y'all make any recommendations to help me get a better spot out of this light?

    Thanks.

    Pics:







    Cut an old tube to wrap the batteries.


    Once I get a lathe, I would turn down and face off the conduit to improve appearance. Maybe shorten the rear plug a bit.

  50. #200
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    Quote Originally Posted by TJWilly View Post
    Can y'all make any recommendations to help me get a better spot out of this light?
    If you have room (depth) for a Regina reflector, it may tighten it up some. My experience with Carclo optics is they always seem to have more flood than the spec's would indicate. The Regina is 20mm diameter so that should fit. It is deeper than the Carclo by a bit and you will need a cover for it adding another mm or so.

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