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  1. #1
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    18650 Helmet Mounted Flashlight - Big lumens small size

    Can anyone suggest a small form factor light, using one 18650, currently use a Quark 123 but want a little more light/time without the size/weight increasing too much...

    http://www.4sevens.com/product_info....oducts_id=2500

    Thanks

  2. #2
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    I'm using a DX XPG light for my helmet light. Bright enough that I can run it on medium mode (2.5 hours run time, at least).

    http://www.dealextreme.com/p/ultrafi...-1-18650-42972

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by a1rports
    Can anyone suggest a small form factor light, using one 18650, currently use a Quark 123 but want a little more light/time without the size/weight increasing too much...

    http://www.4sevens.com/product_info....oducts_id=2500

    Thanks
    How heavy (light weight) of a light do you want, and what kind of output are you hoping to pull out of it? We have a light made for us (very similar to a lot of the DX lights) it's nothing super special but it does come with a two year warranty and they are always in stock right here in San Diego.

    I have rigged a mount (the little Two-Fish set-up would work) on my helmet and have used it a few times and liked it, very much reminded me of most P-7 emitter torches, pretty strong spot with fairly good width. It 900 Lumens etched into the side of the light but it's not that strong, more along the lines of 550-650, similar to a Magic Shine I think. It is a burly little beast so if you want something super-light I wouldn't consider it, but if you want something tough, effective, and pretty inexpensive you may really like it.

    One of the riders here on MTBR did a review of it on one of these threads, but to be honest I am not sure where that thread is at the moment, I will try to find it and paste it up for you.

    Let me know if you have any questions.

    Shannon

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    I use a dx-body with a glued in XM-L drop-in . With a 18650 and the mount it sums up to 109 g. When I put nicely ballanced on top of the helmet, I don't feel it so much.
    Something like this headlamp with a XM-L put in might be nice too

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by a1rports
    Can anyone suggest a small form factor light, using one 18650, currently use a Quark 123 but want a little more light/time without the size/weight increasing too much...

    http://www.4sevens.com/product_info....oducts_id=2500

    Thanks
    I'm assuming this is for a helmet light (?). In keeping with the "small form factor" requirement: I'll recommend this one from D/X. It uses the XP-E emitter which makes a rather nice confined beam pattern for the helmet. It does use a P-60 drop-in module so a good idea not to let it run on high if you're not moving. Once you buy a drop-in type torch if you want you may want to try one of the SST-50 drop-ins ( or other drop in ) To do so you just switch out, simple as that. The one I have I bought from Kaidomain ( $45 ), it has no stupid flash modes ( only 3 modes ) and puts out a brighter but wider beam. Still, a decent option for the helmet. Output is around 500 lumens as the emitter is driven around 1500ma on high. Unlike the XML ( which can be brighter still ) the SST-50 with smooth reflector has a more confined beam.

    So, which do I like more(??)....That's a tough question but the XP-E / WF-401B host gives you everything you need in a helmet light and has better run time than with the SST-50 drop-in. DX has other options as well that might be as good or better. Anyway, the WF-501B torch I recommended is very light-weight and should output more light than your Quark 123 which is under-driven to accommodate the smaller battery. P.S , I also like the look of the torch that qdave mentioned. The reviews on that torch are very good, worth consideration.
    Last edited by Cat-man-do; 03-09-2011 at 12:43 PM.

  6. #6
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    just a cr123 if rechargeable won't last long, think 45min run time, if not rechargeable it'll cost you huge to run the sucker.

    This is my currently helmet torch / LED!!

    http://www.kaidomain.com/ProductDeta...roductId=11098


    It doesn't look great in test around the house, but slap it on your head and the colour is spot on, the throw is amazing, leaves my previous even much bigger P7's and MC-E's and really expensive SST-50 for dead, no spot, no rings just near day light way out there, impressed me so much I've just recieved a 2nd 1, 2 of them on my head

    Got 1 of the bars aswell I was that impressed

    Run time seemed to be 2hours aswell, so it's no where near 1000lumens ofcourse, but it just works and I don't understand why, got 3 and there all pretty much identical to.

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    I've bought a couple of Yezl torches to try as a helmet lamp - have a look here:
    http://www.cnqualitygoods.com/category.php?id=53
    well made - a few options for 18650 and XML, delivered to the UK within a week or so and cheap!

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    Hey Turveyd

    What do you think the actual lumen output is. Also, with the 2 hr run time you are getting on high, does the light stay bright or does it dim. Wondering if it has the electronics inside to keep it bright throughout the 2 hr run time.

    Thx

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by mb323323
    Hey Turveyd

    What do you think the actual lumen output is. Also, with the 2 hr run time you are getting on high, does the light stay bright or does it dim. Wondering if it has the electronics inside to keep it bright throughout the 2 hr run time.

    Thx
    Not speaking for Turveyd but I have one of those too. High mode on mine draws a current of about 2000ma. How that translates to Lumen output is hard to say. Because of the beam pattern I prefer to use mine on the bars. I suppose it would be fine on the helmet only I prefer a tighter beam. Actual lumen output is subjective and is likely a matter of opinion. Since I usually compare the output to other lights I own, I'll go ahead and ballpark an estimate near 600lm. That's with a fresh Ultrafire (red) 2600mAh battery. Likely you will get near a hour of run time before major dimming but I have yet to do a run time test. Personally, I'm hesitate to do an extended run time test on high. Drop-in modules are simple not designed well enough to dissipate the heat build up if left on ( high ) for extended periods ( IMO ).

    When I use torches that use drop-ins I mostly use the mid-level if bar mounted and only switch to high for faster sections. If using one on the helmet I take a different approach. I use only on high but for shorter durations. I can get away with doing that because usually the bar light I'm using will be bright enough for most of the sections that I'm riding.

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    Maybe the ShiningBeam S-Mini? Very, very compact and light. It's lighter with an 18650 than my 1AA Romisen flashlight with a AA.

    Mine did start to randomly turn off, I need to email Bryan at ShiningBeam and request a swap. But anyway, it's got a high lumen-to-weight ratio and a useable runtime, could be worth considering. Oh, and the beam pattern's fairly good... not too spotty, but not a total flood either.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by mechBgon
    Maybe the ShiningBeam S-Mini? Very, very compact and light. It's lighter with an 18650 than my 1AA Romisen flashlight with a AA.

    Mine did start to randomly turn off, I need to email Bryan at ShiningBeam and request a swap. But anyway, it's got a high lumen-to-weight ratio and a useable runtime, could be worth considering. Oh, and the beam pattern's fairly good... not too spotty, but not a total flood either.
    Mech, how good is the S-mini at dissipating the heat? It being so small and lite I have to wonder. Are you using the XP-G R5 version or the R4? Oh, by the way nice review on those rear lights. I just wrote Shiningbeam an e-mail asking about more info on the MG P-Rocket ( XP-G R5 )

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    I have read a LOT of info and reviews on candlepowerforums.com and I have found that these flashlight connoisseurs love the offerings from Solarforce. the L2P has a hard-anodized finish, takes commonly-found P60 emitter drop-ins, and runs on 18650 li-ion batteries. you get to pick from several emitters and "lego" the parts and accessories.

    on top of that, they are CHEAP. I hear generally better reviews over anything from dealextreme and, unlike DX, you won't be waiting three months for your order.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mb323323
    Hey Turveyd

    What do you think the actual lumen output is. Also, with the 2 hr run time you are getting on high, does the light stay bright or does it dim. Wondering if it has the electronics inside to keep it bright throughout the 2 hr run time.

    Thx

    Run time is likely going to be short of 2 hours, 1 kept switching off todays the end of the ride, but I had 2 running on Medium power, think I was out for just over 2hours with some high, so thinking 90mins abit more than a P7 torch.

    I'd say 700 lumens, there is a large spot which fades out gradually and not much spill, which seems to give them a good punch but lights up enough of the trail to easily see whats happening.

    I tried on my bars first, wasn't impressed at all.

    With 2 running at once, on high ( I like 2 incase 1 goes off or something at speed ), it was daylight speeds on a few of the descents, very nice.

    With 2 on Medium that handled everything inbetween easily!!

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do
    Mech, how good is the S-mini at dissipating the heat? It being so small and lite I have to wonder. Are you using the XP-G R5 version or the R4? Oh, by the way nice review on those rear lights. I just wrote Shiningbeam an e-mail asking about more info on the MG P-Rocket ( XP-G R5 )
    I have this one, the R5: http://www.shiningbeam.com/servlet/t...sh-G-R5/Detail I also posted some info and beamshots at http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...-powered-light if anyone's interested. The beamshots compare it to a Fenix L2D Q5, a Romison 1AA light, and a Romison R4 light.

    Bryan got back to me on the problem I mentioned, and suggested snugging down both the pill and the switch-retaining ring to see if that was the issue, which I did, and that seems to have resolved the problem of it switching off at random. I did a night ride tonight with it as my helmet light, no problems.

    Regarding the heat dissipation: the pill threads into the interior of the head and has a lot of threading. The threads have some type of aqua-colored grease which I presume is thermally conductive. Holding the light in my hand and switching it on, I can feel the head section begin to warm up gradually after about 30 seconds, so I think it does get the heat to the exterior OK. From there, there's not a ton of surface area to dump the heat into the air, but in a cycling scenario the light's in a constant airstream, so I think it's OK as-is.

    Anyway, it hits a reasonable price/weight/performance point for those of us who already have 18650s on hand. I also like not having to wait 2-3 weeks for it to arrive from DX! The P-Rocket flavor weighs about 3x as much, which still isn't completely out of the question (I have a Romisen RC-2R4 II that's about that weight).

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by mechBgon
    ...The P-Rocket flavor weighs about 3x as much, which still isn't completely out of the question (I have a Romisen RC-2R4 II that's about that weight).
    The S-mini sounds like a really nice option. Super lite-weight and has a screw-in pill, two really great selling points. Definitely the lightest 18650 torch I've seen. Can you tell me a little more about the beam pattern. The photo you did doesn't really reveal a lot. Does it have any kind of central hot spot at all or is it a flood or medium type beam with no apparent hot spot?

    Yes, the P-rocket is an alternative I think looking into if you can handle the added weight. Doing a quick comparison, looks like the P-rock is about 0.3 oz. lighter than a standard MTE P-7 torch. The front of the P-rocket should also be a slightly smaller than the MTE's.
    Personally it wouldn't be a problem for me. I like the idea that the P-rocket is driving the XP-G @ 1400ma. At that drive current it has to be bright! I just wish I knew what the beam pattern was going to be like. I asked Bryan from SB but he doesn't have any beam pics. He suggested I try CPF

    Thanks again for the feedback Mech. *sigh*..I have three new torches that I bought over the winter. I have yet to test them on a bike. I'll likely wait a while before buying any new ones...at least for the time being.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do
    The S-mini sounds like a really nice option. Super lite-weight and has a screw-in pill, two really great selling points. Definitely the lightest 18650 torch I've seen. Can you tell me a little more about the beam pattern. The photo you did doesn't really reveal a lot. Does it have any kind of central hot spot at all or is it a flood or medium type beam with no apparent hot spot?
    It does have a central hot spot, let me shoot a quick white-wall photo here...



    From left to right, that's the Romison RC-2R4 II, the S-Mini R5, and a DereeLight DBS v2 R2. My camera took serious damage from being dropped on chipseal at over 20mph so I can't do much more than a quickie photo until I get a new camera

    In practice, when combined with my DiNotte 1200+ bar system at full power, the S-Mini's hotspot is the only part of the beam my eyes see, because the DiNotte's causing the S-Mini's spill to just get lost. If I want to see further out, I can bring the DiNotte down to low and then my eyesight adapts down to where the S-Mini's beam has more "weight," if you know what I'm saying.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do
    I'm assuming this is for a helmet light (?). In keeping with the "small form factor" requirement: I'll recommend this one from D/X. It uses the XP-E emitter which makes a rather nice confined beam pattern for the helmet. It does use a P-60 drop-in module so a good idea not to let it run on high if you're not moving. Once you buy a drop-in type torch if you want you may want to try one of the SST-50 drop-ins ( or other drop in ) To do so you just switch out, simple as that. The one I have I bought from Kaidomain ( $45 ), it has no stupid flash modes ( only 3 modes ) and puts out a brighter but wider beam. Still, a decent option for the helmet. Output is around 500 lumens as the emitter is driven around 1500ma on high. Unlike the XML ( which can be brighter still ) the SST-50 with smooth reflector has a more confined beam.

    So, which do I like more(??)....That's a tough question but the XP-E / WF-401B host gives you everything you need in a helmet light and has better run time than with the SST-50 drop-in. DX has other options as well that might be as good or better. Anyway, the WF-501B torch I recommended is very light-weight and should output more light than your Quark 123 which is under-driven to accommodate the smaller battery. P.S , I also like the look of the torch that qdave mentioned. The reviews on that torch are very good, worth consideration.
    Reading all of this thread with interest, but I have a question that's related mostly to this post.

    I'm thinking of upgrading my 501B host with an XML drop-in. DX has this 5-mode, but it has a textured reflector. The drop-in they sell with the smooth reflector is 1-mode.

    Since it will go on my helmet, I'd prefer a tighter beam so the smooth reflector seems the way to go. But I'd like to go with multi-mode (although I don't use the blinky modes). So instead of buying two drop-ins and swapping reflectors, would this reflector work with the XML?

    Also, if you have any recommendations on an alternate XML drop-in, I'd appreciate it. I've been away from these threads for a while and trying to catch up

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by random walk
    Reading all of this thread with interest, but I have a question that's related mostly to this post.

    I'm thinking of upgrading my 501B host with an XML drop-in. DX has this 5-mode, but it has a textured reflector. The drop-in they sell with the smooth reflector is 1-mode.

    Since it will go on my helmet, I'd prefer a tighter beam so the smooth reflector seems the way to go. But I'd like to go with multi-mode (although I don't use the blinky modes). So instead of buying two drop-ins and swapping reflectors, would this reflector work with the XML?

    Also, if you have any recommendations on an alternate XML drop-in, I'd appreciate it. I've been away from these threads for a while and trying to catch up

    I had the same idea regards trying with a smooth reflector, although I like it just fine as is currently, a bit more punch over the summer for faster speeds would be nice, I've got a Q5 with smooth reflector at a mates I'm trying to get back to test.

    But I've just ordered 2 smooth reflectors from your link so thanks

    And some more 18650's.

    If i get to try to smooth reflector before these arrive in many weeks time, I'll post up, or when they arrive.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by random walk
    Reading all of this thread with interest, but I have a question that's related mostly to this post.

    I'm thinking of upgrading my 501B host with an XML drop-in. DX has this 5-mode, but it has a textured reflector. The drop-in they sell with the smooth reflector is 1-mode.

    Since it will go on my helmet, I'd prefer a tighter beam so the smooth reflector seems the way to go. But I'd like to go with multi-mode (although I don't use the blinky modes). So instead of buying two drop-ins and swapping reflectors, would this reflector work with the XML?

    Also, if you have any recommendations on an alternate XML drop-in, I'd appreciate it. I've been away from these threads for a while and trying to catch up
    Random, the link to the smooth reflector looks interesting. Looks like the opening for the emitter is designed for a XRE so I'm thinking it should be large enough to fit the dome of the XM-L. For the money definitely worth the try.

    I also like the link to the XM-L single mode with smooth reflector. Just keep in mind the driver on this drop-in is only set-up to output 1400ma. The 5-modes are about 2000ma, therefore they are brighter ( initially, on a fresh battery ) Still, this single mode drop-in is set-up with the smooth reflector. That is a big plus as I see it. Sometimes there are minute adjustments needed to make a smooth reflector work right ( with less ringing ). This drop-in should already be dialed in and set to go, worth taking a shot at. I might buy one of these myself, just for the reflector.

    In retrospect, I tried my XM-L 5-mode drop-in with a smooth reflector that was designed for a SST-50 drop-in. Initially I wasn't impressed with the wall beam pattern ( somewhat ringy )...BUT...I might have made a premature judgment. I never did take it outside to see how the more condensed beam translated to actual use. That being the case I think I'm gonna give it another go, just to be sure.

    A word of caution when trying different reflectors on your drop-in. Make sure none of the metal on the reflector contacts the emitter dome or any of the soldered electrical junctions. That could cause big problems. It is also important that the reflector be tight and snug on the threads as the reflector provides a big part of the drop-in's heat sinking path. Believe me I found that out the hard way. If the reflector is too loose your emitter will over-heat and not last very long.

    Turveyd, let us know how yours does with the smooth.

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    Thanks Turveyd & Cat.

    If that $3 smooth reflector works, this could result in a nice XML helmet light for ~$30:

    UF 501b host, $10 (DX part with K2 colored LED, ditch the drop-in)
    XML 5-mode drop in, $15
    smooth reflector, $3

    For the sake of experimentation, though, I'll probably drop the extra $13 on the 1-mode drop in and see what reflector yields a better pattern.

    Interesting idea in the comments section for that reflector: "To avoid the possibility of short circuiting emitter leads, I made 2 donut shaped insulators from my stock of TO-3 transistor mica insulators and stuck them to the reflector base using some silicon grease."

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    BTW when I originally bought that reflector, my intent was to swap it for the textured reflector in this UF 501b MC-E light. That combo might satisfy the OP's goal -- it's got a lot of output on high, comparable to my SF-15 SSC P7. I don't have any ride time with it, though, just some backyard tests.

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    Funny, I'm just timing the high beam burn time on my new Shiningbeam s-mini, neutral white, and I'm over 2:15. (2900 mAh Panasonics, protected and wrapped by AW.) Maybe by the time I'm finished this post it'll have run out.
    I'm really happy with this light, and the service from Bryan at Shiningbeam. I got it to the UK in 8 days, which impressed me. The light is well-made and bright. The beam is middle of the flood/spot range. The head does get warm, but as mentioned, I've been running it on high for the last 2 hours indoors, and I can hold it comfortably. It's regulated, so burns a very flat line, then abruptly turns off. (Or maybe that's my battery turning it off. Not sure.)

    Anyway, 2:22 and still burning bright.

    edit: F%^$ me! 3:05 until shutoff! (I was beginning to wonder if I was on the mid-bright mode.)
    Last edited by borrower; 03-23-2011 at 04:40 AM.
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    Not had time to sort the smooth reflector from my mate just up the road yet.

    Remember the position depth wise can change the pattern a lot aswell, a reflector designed for the XML would ofcourse be better.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Turveyd
    Remember the position depth wise can change the pattern a lot aswell, a reflector designed for the XML would ofcourse be better.
    I agree, that's why I'm probably going to sacrifice the extra $13 to get the 1-mode smooth reflector XML module so I can compare how the different reflectors perform (on the 5-mode).

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    I've got the others on the way already, so might be here for end of next week maybe, then I can test standard reflector against the smooth and see if it works.

    I do like the current splodge of light which comes out it's clean, smooth might ruin this, but sure I'll find other uses for smooth reflectors

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    I use a Lumipower signature with Turbo head with an Exposure helmet mount.

    Body of Lumipower torch is 22.5mm so fits the latest Exposure mounts perfectly.. most torches have a 25mm body which is a really tight fit.

    The one I have is the SST50 emitter. I think they now do the new Cree XL-M emitter which is cheaper and has bettter throw.

    Weight is sub 100g too.

    Compared to my mates Exposure Joystick the Lumipower looks a LOT brighter, more spill and better throw too.

    Hope this helps,

    Chaser.

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    I lost my S-Mini somewhere along Interstate 90 during an 83-mile ride

    I found that the S-Mini is not available at ShiningBeam! I ordered up the new XM-L powered P-Rocket in the 850lm variant, figuring it could rival the S-Mini on its 1000ma mode in terms of light output, with a useful runtime. But not compactness or weight, it's 3x the weight.

    I knew the S-Mini was with me at our turnaround point, but missing by the time we were up to 75 miles. I shook my fist at Fate and went looking for it the next evening after work. I mean hey, how hard can it be to find a small black aluminum cylinder along 35 miles of debris-strewn highway shoulder? At sundown?

    So I rode out to the turnaround point and dropped to tourist pace and wore my dasm eyeballs out staring at roadside debris, scoring an awesome piece of blue nylon webbing with a hook on the end. The sun went down. I turned on the DiNotte 1200+ at max output and kept looking. Nothing to lose...

    At mile 65, I did a double-take. I FOUND IT! In the meanwhile, Bryan tells me he'll be getting another batch of S-Minis in a few weeks... I may get a second one.

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    Didn't see the light you speak of on their site.

    Can you tell me a bit about the Smini. Lumens, size, weight.

    I'm going to go wireless on my head next Winter and am looking at options.

    MB

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    Quote Originally Posted by mechBgon View Post
    ...At mile 65, I did a double-take. I FOUND IT! In the meanwhile, Bryan tells me he'll be getting another batch of S-Minis in a few weeks... I may get a second one.
    Great story Mech, Late last year I lost a small mini torch that was the first decent led torch I ever owned ( old Luxeon Led ) I had shoved it into my riding shorts while portaging my bike around some tree limbs. Moments later when I reached for it , it was gone.
    Since I had only gone maybe 25ft. you would of thought I'd find it but there were leaves everywhere. I went back in full daylight and still never found it.

    I ended up replacing it with a simple low output single mode. This time the body is silver and to make sure I don't lose it by dropping it I also added two small pieces of reflectorized tape to the torch body. Glad you found your S-Mini. You are very, bery, lucky..

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by mb323323 View Post
    Didn't see the light you speak of on their site.

    Can you tell me a bit about the Smini. Lumens, size, weight.

    I'm going to go wireless on my head next Winter and am looking at options.

    MB
    Certainly, I put up a little review here: http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...-powered-light. As the thread says, if you open each of the photo links in its own browser tab, you can flip back and forth to compare them easily.

    In brief, it's ~90 grams with a battery installed, rated around 360 lumens (at the emitter, I suppose), runtime on maximum is well over 2 hours, and the beam isn't too much of a spot, nor too much of a flood either.

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    @mb323323, Bryan at Shiningbeam(.com) has a habit of taking flashlight information off the site when they are out of stock. Rumour has it they're coming back in within a few weeks, so maybe wait a bit.

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    ...About the S-Mini....anyone do a current draw measurement at the tail? Since it seems to have such a long run time I'm just wondering what kind of current it draws on high. ( Of course it doesn't hurt to be using the best batteries... )

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    ...About the S-Mini....anyone do a current draw measurement at the tail? Since it seems to have such a long run time I'm just wondering what kind of current it draws on high. ( Of course it doesn't hurt to be using the best batteries... )
    I got some data for ya. I tested the amp draw at the tail cap after 5 min of runtime from a fresh charged AW 2900. I used inline amp meter and also a .05 ohms and measure the Vdrop. Here is what I got:

    Using and inline Amp meter and no resistor in series
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Lo = 22 ma
    Med = 341 ma
    Hi = 892 ma


    Using a .05 ohm resistor in series and measure Vdrop:
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Lo = 1.1mv drop. Amps calculate to 22ma
    Med = 17.3mv drop. Amps calculate to 346ma
    Hi = 43.6mv drop. Amps calculate to 872ma



    There is a new version of the S mini with a XML due soon. Bryen did say that the beam will be twice the size of the S mini with the XPG R5. I find two S mini is almost comparable to a MS P7 light. I did some outdoor setting beamshot of the S mini along with a MS P7.....DX P7 torch.....Gemini Titan......DX MS XML and Bikeray IV. I posted it at Bikeforum awhile back when I first got the BR IV. I will repost part of it here.

    The setting has a garbage can at 100ft out. The camera was set at ISO 200, Shutter = 2 seconds, and Fstop of 4.0.

    The scenerio is here:
    http://i1127.photobucket.com/albums/...t/scenerio.jpg

    The contol night shot is here:
    http://i1127.photobucket.com/albums/...ontrolshot.jpg

    S mini XPG R5 beamshot is here:
    http://i1127.photobucket.com/albums/...shot/Smini.jpg

    DX P7 here:
    http://i1127.photobucket.com/albums/...mshot/DXP7.jpg

    Magicshine 900 P7 here:
    http://i1127.photobucket.com/albums/...ot/ms900p7.jpg

    DX Magicshine XML here:
    http://i1127.photobucket.com/albums/...icshinesml.jpg

    Gemini Titan P7 here:
    http://i1127.photobucket.com/albums/...iniTitanP7.jpg

    Bikeray IV here:
    http://i1127.photobucket.com/albums/.../BikerayIV.jpg


    and finally a picture of the lights head on the tripod.
    http://i1127.photobucket.com/albums/...htbackview.jpg

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by colleen c View Post
    There is a new version of the S mini with a XML due soon. Bryen did say that the beam will be twice the size of the S mini with the XPG R5.
    WANT!! I hope he has them by the end of July, I have a special long-distance night ride on August 6th where I'd like to run the lightest-weight lights practical.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by borrower View Post
    @mb323323, Bryan at Shiningbeam(.com) has a habit of taking flashlight information off the site when they are out of stock. Rumour has it they're coming back in within a few weeks, so maybe wait a bit.

    Yep, no info on their web site so they're still out. Just thought I'd point out there is a Chinese version made by Yezl.

    Posted by mechBgon:
    WANT!! I hope he has them by the end of July, I have a special long-distance night ride on August 6th where I'd like to run the lightest-weight lights practical.
    Mech, I have a Yezi XM-L version that is very small. It is the smallest torch I own. Likely about the same size as the S-mini. It is 3-modes H-M-L ( no flash modes ) Super bright on high. Some ringy-ness to the beam but not noticeable while using it. I use it as my back up bar light. Initially I had some problems with it but after tightening the copper ring inside it works fine now.
    There is also an XP-G R-5 version. Same three mode no flash.

    I've used cnqualitygoods before without issue. Had my stuff in 16 days via Hong Kong post. Because of that I just reordered the XM-L flood to zoom torch that I previously ordered somewhere else that never came.

    Anyway, photo below of the Yezl Z1X. Next to it is my Ultrafire 501-B XP-E drop-in torch which I use for helmet duties. Both see regular use. Hopefully the XM-L flood to zoom will make a nicer helmet torch. I won't know though till I get it. (* edit...if you order make sure you check if you want the 3 mode or 5 mode as there are two versions. )

    Colleen, thanks for supplying those current measurements. It helps explain the longer run times of the S-mini.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 18650 Helmet Mounted Flashlight - Big lumens small size-yezl.jpg  

    Last edited by Cat-man-do; 07-04-2011 at 12:43 AM.

  36. #36
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    ShiningBeam's latest offering is a P-rocket with XM-L, claiming >850 lumen output.

    It is better suited to bicycle use / constant high mode operation than the S-mini, due to it's ~3X greater thermal mass and superior heat dissipation.


    I'll buy my next 10 flashlights from Shining Beam before I'll take a chance on another DX/KD light. SB's product quality is excellent and customer service is exemplary.


    http://www.shiningbeam.com/servlet/t...50-pls-/Detail


    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 18650 Helmet Mounted Flashlight - Big lumens small size-a20791f130d403fd2d581b_l.jpg  

    Last edited by seeker; 07-04-2011 at 08:16 AM.

  37. #37
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    Big lumens != (not equal) small size
    if you are happy with your quark, get another one,
    use non-rechargables, should get you in the 1.2 - 1.4hr range,
    and change batteries as needed.
    otherwise get a Lupine Piko .
    anything with larger flashlight, bigger batteries be top heavy.
    notes:
    a helmet light is not a substitute for a handlebar light !
    recommend, 2x handlebar, 1x helmet + backup emergency and a little tail light.
    Baja's are great on handlebar.
    might want to keep your 123 as backup emergency, ....

    flashlights on a performance mountain bike, where the average has an $3k + bike,
    just don't make sense. If you already have enough light (doubt it), for the geek factor, ok,
    or for backup purpose.
    and weight should not be an issue, since safety and runtime is paramount at night.
    ---
    like my buddy, running a Leopard-II said, in my line of duty, I can't afford to have substandard equipment. ( or have the slightest doubt) . though most of the cool stuff, was classified.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by seeker View Post
    [COLOR=Black][FONT=Arial]ShiningBeam's latest offering is a P-rocket with XM-L, claiming >850 lumen output.

    It is better suited to bicycle use / constant high mode operation than the S-mini, due to it's ~3X greater thermal mass and superior heat dissipation.
    The S-Mini hasn't had a heat-related problem for me, even in still air. On a bike in a 15mph+ airstream, it would be even less of an issue. I did get a P-Rocket 850 and it'll be a good light for shorter trips in traffic, such as commutes or shopping trips, but it's definitely hefty.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by rschultz101 View Post
    Big lumens != (not equal) small size
    if you are happy with your quark, get another one,
    use non-rechargables, should get you in the 1.2 - 1.4hr range,
    and change batteries as needed.
    otherwise get a Lupine Piko .
    anything with larger flashlight, bigger batteries be top heavy.
    notes:
    a helmet light is not a substitute for a handlebar light !
    recommend, 2x handlebar, 1x helmet + backup emergency and a little tail light.
    Baja's are great on handlebar.
    might want to keep your 123 as backup emergency, ....

    flashlights on a performance mountain bike, where the average has an $3k + bike,
    just don't make sense. If you already have enough light (doubt it), for the geek factor, ok,
    or for backup purpose.
    and weight should not be an issue, since safety and runtime is paramount at night.
    ---
    like my buddy, running a Leopard-II said, in my line of duty, I can't afford to have substandard equipment. ( or have the slightest doubt) . though most of the cool stuff, was classified.
    I thought I'd address some of the issues you brought up about torch use. There are actually many torches that use a small form factor, use rechargeable 18650 cells and are quite usable as helmet lights. The advantages are less weight and no wires off the helmet.

    Disadvantages vary. Some don't work well with some helmets. Having a good "torch ready" helmet is a major issue. Run time is another issue but if you use a good quality XPG or XPE torch and know how to use it efficiently ( when to turn it on, when to turn it off, when to mode down/up etc...) it is amazing how well it can work if you find one with the right beam pattern. Beam pattern though is a personal choice and as such it might take one a while to find exactly what they want.

    As was mentioned earlier, most cheaper made torches are not designed for constant "ON" use. Especially if they are using the stronger emitters and are using the "drop-in " form factor. However if you have one that has the emitter attached to a nice aluminum pill ( screw in module ) or other heat sink that is well connected to the exterior of the torch, you will get better heat management ( regardless of what company sells it ).

    Not sure I would recommend someone using just torches for an "all night" mega trek through the mountains BUT...If I were to do something like that I would carry three. One helmet, one bar and one for back-up. For a real "outback adventure", they would be my most tested, efficient and reliable torches. Then I would take as many cells as I thought I might need and then take a couple more. Need I say in a situation like that good quality batteries are a must. More important than anything else is to know the limitations of your equipment and the run times on all modes.

    I still remember one particular mega ride I took years ago where I almost got caught on unfamiliar trails deep within the mountains as the sun was setting. I only had one emergency led torch with me and a 30lm output at that. Very scary, I got off the mountain just as the sun was setting. After that I vowed that would never happen again. With the stuff I own now, it never will.

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    Thx

    Gonna wait for the XM-L s mini. Looking at torches b/c they're wireless and light. Yeah, I know they are not as light as a single light head like the Piko but then I have wires again. You can't beat the price and I already have 4 18650's w/ the charger so run time won't be an issue.

    And of course I'll have the bar light as well.

    That 850 lumen light looks intriguing. Has anyone ridden w/ that on the helmet and can you feel the weight. That is probably the max size and weight light I'd want on my head. I do have the right helmet for it.

    MB

  41. #41
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    Last night I went for a long ride after work and ended up well beyond sundown with the S-Mini (XP-G version). I was out in the countryside, on a mix of gravel and paved roads, so it was my chance to see if I could do my special-event ride with just the S-Mini, on Medium output except a couple quick descents on High.

    With no competing lights to interfere, Medium was enough to ride with on dry pavement/gravel, although spotting kamikaze deer is a different story I was averaging ~18mph over 68 miles with 3600ft climing, so we're not talking a 10mph tourist-y pace here either.

    So today I thought "huh, well lemme do a runtime test on Medium with my shiny new 3000mAh Ultrafire cells." I started the flashlight at about 10:20AM, it's now past 6:30PM, and it still hasn't turned off. Even if it's running with some thermal throttling, that's definitely going to serve my purpose of riding from midnight to ~5AM.

  42. #42
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    The XM-L version of the S-Mini just showed up at Shiningbeam, if anyone's been waiting for them:

    http://www.shiningbeam.com/servlet/t...sh-mini/Detail

    It's supposed to be more of a flood beam. I think the old beam pattern was pretty good, so this may not be an improvement, but I'll try to reserve judgement until I've had a chance to compare them on a night ride.

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by mechBgon View Post
    The XM-L version of the S-Mini just showed up at Shiningbeam, if anyone's been waiting for them:

    http://www.shiningbeam.com/servlet/t...sh-mini/Detail

    It's supposed to be more of a flood beam. I think the old beam pattern was pretty good, so this may not be an improvement, but I'll try to reserve judgement until I've had a chance to compare them on a night ride.
    Kind of a bummer that it's max is only 1000ma. True, running one around 2500ma with the small form factor I'm sure it would get hot real fast but it would still be nice for short down hill runs. I am somewhat confused why they would claim the output is 400 lumen when the max current draw is only about a third of what the emitter is capable of handling.

    Anyway, I quickly compared the output of my Yezl XM-L. High is just over 2000ma. and medium is about 670ma. My medium I judge to be close to 300 lumen so perhaps 400lm at 1000ma is not too far a stretch. Still the S-mini ( XML) medium is only drawing 400ma. That might make it around 150-175 lumen when on medium ( which need I say is not a whole lot ).

    A shame Shiningbeam hasn't restocked the original XPG S-mini. Like you said, the XP-G version is likely the better set-up for helmet anyway. Dang it, if the XM-L S-mini had a max current draw closer to 2000ma I might have sprung for one of those ( hoping that the beam tint would be whiter than the one used in the Yezl ). Yep, if that had been the case, I'd a been on that like a cat on a bowl of Albacore tuna.

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post


    I am somewhat confused why they would claim the output is 400 lumen when the max current draw is only about a third of what the emitter is capable of handling.

    Anyway, I quickly compared the output of my Yezl XM-L. High is just over 2000ma. and medium is about 670ma. My medium I judge to be close to 300 lumen so perhaps 400lm at 1000ma is not too far a stretch. Still the S-mini ( XML) medium is only drawing 400ma. That might make it around 150-175 lumen when on medium ( which need I say is not a whole lot ).
    I believe that claim 400 lumens at 1amp draw at the LED is correct....that is if I am interpreting the data sheet from Cree correctly. If I am wrong than please correct me as I am still trying to decipher these !@#$ charts. So if anyone who know how to read these chart, then please teach me. Argh!

    According to the chart, the Cool White T6 bin will yield 280 luminous flux at 700 ma draw. In their chart for relative luminous flux vs current draw, they show at 1amp draw, the relative luminous flux is 140%. So 140% of 280 is close to the 400 lumens claim (give or take a few).

    What I like to see is Torch manufactor who is willing to take a small package flashlight and drive it at a high amperage (maybe even close to max) and list it as for "biking only with adequate airflow only". Too me, that will be an ideal small helmet light which will be lighter and smaller than most general torch that is beefier in design to avoid heat issue. Then again they will have to do some kind of special limited warranty issue for the that

  45. #45
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    ~328 lumen
    at 1A T6, 300-340, depends on bin and temperature.
    that's with temp derating and reflector + front glass.
    ehm, per my Bender calculator, thumb x Pi
    just take two
    and 1A is just fine, so it does not overheat and suck down the juice.
    for the Mr. Spot logic, get and XPG, or even XPE, better spot then xml,
    cheers, Rob

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by colleen c View Post
    ....According to the chart, the Cool White T6 bin will yield 280 luminous flux at 700 ma draw. In their chart for relative luminous flux vs current draw, they show at 1amp draw, the relative luminous flux is 140%. So 140% of 280 is close to the 400 lumens claim (give or take a few...
    From my calculation I get about 137% X 280 so about 383lm. If you account for the losses for thermal/optic, yes rschultz101 is likely right. So maybe 350lm if they are using some really good bins.

    Tonight I was doing some playing around with my Yezl. Even the low mode on mine is usable to ride. You won't want to break any land speed records with that level of light but it does fine.

  47. #47
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    For those who may be curious, the low mode on the S-Mini is really low, as you'd guess from the 24mA current draw. I suppose it would be handy for reading a map at point-blank range in the dark.

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by mechBgon View Post
    For those who may be curious, the low mode on the S-Mini is really low, as you'd guess from the 24mA current draw. I suppose it would be handy for reading a map at point-blank range in the dark.
    Okay, keeping with my last post .....The low mode on the Yezl is 21ma. Like I said before, it is surprisingly usable at that level and still has decent throw. It is surprising sometimes just how usable low levels of light can be when the beam pattern is optimal. With all this in perspective I think the S-mini ( XM-L ) would make a fine selection for people doing endurance events and needed a back-up light that could provide long run times.

  49. #49
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    There are XML torches that are claiming 1200+ lumens on DX. Even if you only got half that, it seems fawkin bright for a small single cell 18650 torch. Anybody got any thoughts on these? I bought an XML torch from DX a few months ago and it's really nice, but nowhere near the 1200 lumens these new torches are claiming.
    Ocala Mountain Bike Association - www.omba.org

  50. #50
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    My XM-L S-Mini arrived and here is a back-to-back comparison with the XP-G variant.

    Right-click this link and open in a new tab: http://i240.photobucket.com/albums/f...SMini_XP-G.jpg

    Right-click this link and open in another new tab: http://i240.photobucket.com/albums/f...SMini_XM-L.jpg

    Now you can toggle between the tabs for a good comparison. The bike at the far left is getting some light from the doorway it's next to, so disregard that. Both lights were aimed the same, sitting on a BikeBlock on a bike in a holder. Same camera settings too, naturally.

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