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  1. #601
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    ...XM-L ( U2 )...haven't seen the SSX2 with XM-L2 yet unless I'm missing something. So far I think the loose emitter board issue is only for certain SSX2 clones.

    **edit...Solarstorm X2 does come in a XM-L2 T-6 version ( fasttech)
    I got the XML2 in Ebay. I might take it apart just to see what I have inside. It has been running fine for about 20 hours use ( and run on high the whole ride).
    Solarstorm 2 x CREE XM L XM L2 Bicycle LED Light Bike X2 Light Only New Bulb | eBay
    Last edited by the mayor; 12-02-2013 at 08:33 AM.

  2. #602
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    Color Temperature: 7000-7500K


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  3. #603
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    Blueish white - cheap XM-L2 U2 (and not only) use to be just like that. But there is confusing description XM-L / XM-L2 - you can choose and pictures are with XM-L

  4. #604
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    Quote Originally Posted by varider View Post
    Those hope mounts look awesome. The shipping to the US is almost as much as the item with the total around $20. Not a good deal.
    Now you know how us Canucks feel, with most things shipped from the states.

    There are a number of reasonably similar mounts that you should find easily available for less. For example
    • Planet Bike Quick Cam Handlebar Bracket <$3 (Quick Release Bracket)
    • Cygo‑Lite Handle Bar Mount ‑ Type A $14 (Bracket stays on bars - Light Head quick releases)

  5. #605
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    Even popular Cateye H-24 for 25.4 and his successor for 31.8 is a nice alternative (fits MJ880 clone - just bolt on mod, but SS X2 needs new hole for that) In the states it''l be for about $2-3 from cateye.

  6. #606
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    After reading this thread I decided to open mine up. Like many others mine has loose emitter boards, no thermal paste, and no pill. So far I've used it on a couple rides and it works well on medium setting for 2hr rides. Probably worth the $30 bucks I paid but not near the quality of the original design.

  7. #607
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    Quote Originally Posted by MK96 View Post
    Blueish white - cheap XM-L2 U2 (and not only) use to be just like that. But there is confusing description XM-L / XM-L2 - you can choose and pictures are with XM-L
    Yeah, if it's over 7000K it's likely going to have some bluishness to the tint. Mayor, can you confirm this?.

    Interesting what you see on E-bay. Some of the SSX2's you can buy around $20 USD. I have a feeling though that most of these are going to be using the loose emitter boards ( sorry I won't call them pills unless there is a bit more metal to them ).

    Would be nice if someone would market an aftermarket flood lens for these babies ( like they did for the 808 clones ) so you could get a little more side spill if you feel you need it. One flood lens ( or wider optic ) with one reflector should do the trick for enhancing the use on the bars. You can buy "lightly frosted lenses" to size but I'd rather see an optic or a fluted lens like with the 808's.

  8. #608
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    Six weeks ago I ordered a Solarstorm from Fasttech. I received it 8 days later and was impressed with the amount of light and the whole package. It came shipped in a nice box with foam cut out for each component. I liked it so much and found that Lightmalls had the Xm-L2 version so I decided to buy a couple more. Four weeks later the lights from Lightmalls arrived. In a side by side comparison the original XM-L light was much brighter. The new XM-L2 version has a much warmer tint, but there is definitely not as much light. The build quality is suspect compared to the original as well. The metal cover on the front does not sit flat and allows light to escape out the sides rather than through the reflector. (I will try and get a picture of it later) the emitters are mounted on a pill that sits loosely inside and are held in place by the reflectors pressing against them. I will add some thermal paste as others have done and hope the thermal transfer is sufficient. The lights were shipped in a box just big enough to hold 2 light a battery and charger. There was no special packaging foam padding. These were cheap, if they last for a few rides then I guess I will be satisfied and when they fail I will lurk around here for the next great deal and give that a try.

  9. #609
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    Here is a picture of my SSx2 XM-L2 version from Fasttech with the missing pill/loose emitter. I found some coins that fit inside the case on the lip and cut a notch out on each side to slip behind the wires.
    SolarStorm/FandyFire X2-imag0315.jpg
    Here is what it looks like from the back after inserting the coins. I'm waiting on some thermal compound to come in the mail to put in between the coin & emitter, and along the edges. Hopefully this cheap solution will dissipate enough heat to keep it from overheating too quickly, it's worth a shot...
    SolarStorm/FandyFire X2-imag0317.jpg

  10. #610
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    Got my light today! The pills had a pretty bad contact with the casing, so I put in a bit of thermal paste, but I think I should have put in some more.

    The PCB is red opposed to the black and blue that I mostly see.
    I charged up the battery and I am testing it right now.

  11. #611
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    Quote Originally Posted by neabue View Post
    Here is a picture of my SSx2 XM-L2 version from Fasttech with the missing pill/loose emitter. I found some coins that fit inside the case on the lip and cut a notch out on each side to slip behind the wires.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Here is what it looks like from the back after inserting the coins. I'm waiting on some thermal compound to come in the mail to put in between the coin & emitter, and along the edges. Hopefully this cheap solution will dissipate enough heat to keep it from overheating too quickly, it's worth a shot...
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Neablue,

    All you do is adding some extra thermal resistance.

    First the surface of your coins is not flat.
    this gives a consideable amount of thermal resistance between te star pcb and the coin.
    Second, your coins consist of 2 pieces of metal, both with unknown thermal characteristics. Between the two bits of metal there is thermal resistance.
    Thrd, you did not increase the surface where teh heat is transferred to the casing.
    So all you did with your effort is place a fair amount of thermal resitance between your emitters and the outside world.

    I don't think the pills are necessary.
    As long as the back of the star makes good contact with the ridge, that should be enough.
    Therefore the emitters should be pressed against the ridge, so maybe an extra o-ring behind the glass is a good idea. and a little thermal paste.
    Belgian beer and Scotch whisky.

  12. #612
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    I think you did a good job neabue. I think it will improve the heat transfer. It just has to be good enough to not fry itself!

  13. #613
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    The surface is not flat - but thermal paste shall do it. Thermal characteristic of coins is mostly nickel, brass, nordic gold (89% copper, 5% aluminium, 5% zinc, and 1% tin), so that shall do it again. Overall it shall improve things, but the better the pills fit (flat surface, recess on the back side) the better will be the thermal transfer to the body of the light. Low value coins, e.g. 0.01 0.02 0.05 euro are copper plated steel.

  14. #614
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    Quote Originally Posted by thasingletrackmastah View Post
    Neablue,
    ...As long as the back of the star makes good contact with the ridge, that should be enough.
    Therefore the emitters should be pressed against the ridge, so maybe an extra o-ring behind the glass is a good idea. and a little thermal paste.
    Using a slightly bigger O-ring to add a little more pressure was my idea as well. A little extra pressure on the board along with some extra thermal paste can't hurt...I hope. Keep in mind the reflector is pulling some heat away from the board as well.

    For years now I've been using drop-in torches that also have very poor thermal paths. The key is not letting the unit get too hot to cause damage to the emitter. This means not being able to run the high mode as much as you want unfortunately.

  15. #615
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    Guys, this looks ridiculous.

    Chinese lack basic understanding of things, because of their mindset and education system. The purpose of their education system is to make kids memorize information, not more. They consider essential for a person to memorize information in a brute form, as much as possible, walking encyclopedia. This somehow works for them, because their brains are hardwired to have a photographic memory, look at their writing system with the crazy 80,000 ideograms, the linguists being able to retain about 7000 of them. We, the westerners, memorize 26-32 basic signs or shapes and with these we can communicate whatever we want. What will the adults do with that raw information escapes basic logic. Understanding of how things work, the perspective, from where the things come and where they go, the broader image, this is another thing, and the rule is: someone smarter and with much more responsibility knows better, it's not your job or purpose to understand. They live in a militaristic mindset and environment, much like the ants and termites, someone else thinks for the rest, someone enlightened. This is the reason they are still on the copy routine, do not have the ability to create things starting from principles of physics, because the principles of physics are just brute information, have no meaning for them, or the meaning is not deeply understood. Imagine that thermal resistance has no meaning for them, let alone electricity. Long term reliability has no sense. It works, it lights up, then is good, things cannot work indefinitely, sometime they stop working, even after 5 minutes. Do you imagine that some engineers test these lights for hours, to see the behavior of the Cree leds in their junk cases and have a statistic of the reliability, let's say after 48 hours the things burn, ok, that is 24 recharge cycles, this means an average of say 6 to 12 weeks of use (2-4 times per week), good enough for a few bucks. They know that customers, in their greed, will accept to tradeoff bad quality for cheap and continue buying out junk. For some things it works, but for some not. Would you buy a chinese car copied approximately upon a western car, just because it's 5000 dolars? Would you trade cheap for the chances of dying if a wheel pops out at 85 miles/h from bad quality screws? No, you should not.

    Imagine that the pcb design is done by girls, because of their better photographic memory. They have no idea what they do, what's the purpose of their work, they paint strips with different widths from one point to another to conduct current.

    Even if some of them are smarter and do understand, they don't care, because their purpose is to sell junk for money, hard earned money. In their case is not hard earned money, is just a mean ripoff. And on top of this, they pollute the planet insanely, because again of their lack of understanding of the effects of their actions and lack of responsibility. And we contribute to this, buying into their insane game, buying their junk because we want comfort, we want to afford as much stuff as possible for the money we have.

    Guys, buy quality products from companies that invest effort, knowledge and quality into your comfort.

  16. #616
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  18. #618
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    In response to post #615....not a good idea to misjudge and malign an entire culture that is thousands of years old just because there are some people there selling a cheap consumer product that you happen not to like. I'm not Chinese but if I was I would be offended by your post. Heck, I'm not Chinese and I AM OFFENDED by your post.

    If you want to buy a really nice, well made and expensive bike lamp, knock yourself out. Buy a lamp from whoever you want to. If it's your money, spend it as you chose. Not nice to tell others what they SHOULD buy and who not to buy from. It's fine to give an opinion but to categorically diss an entire culture for making a cheap buck on a cheap product goes beyond the pale.

    Now as to what to buy or who to buy from; I think most people posting on this forum can make those decisions themselves just by reading ALL OF THE DIFFERENT THREADS AND OPINIONS.

  19. #619
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gingerdawg View Post
    I picked up one of the Panovo battery boxes that use 4 individual 18650 cells. I charge them independantly, not as a pack.
    I use Panasonic 18650 cells.
    I have the same setup, working quite well for me!

  20. #620
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    +1 What Cat-man-do said.....

    I bought mine on ebay.. I have not stripped it or checked it out.. I Know it works and I have tried it out running the battery down on each setting as well as running a larger battery pack down on each setting to see how long the battery last too.... I did put it in front of a fan for the high power tests but that is as far as it as gone...

    CHEAP? Yes...
    Nasty?? No
    Does it work? Yes
    Do the batteries packs last as long as I will need? Yes.
    Do I care what the exact output of the batteries are? Nope.. See above.
    Is it fit for purpose? Yes..
    SHOULD I buy an expensive light because someone else thinks so?? No..

    If it gets smashed in 1 day to 6 months time I dont really care because I could smash a cheap light just as hard as I can an expensive one if I crash. No warranty will cover dropping off of a trail and am I expecting to crash? No.. But then no one expects too..
    I think trying it out for a couple of days using 2 different battery packs has shown it will be OK for now and should work at least long enough to see all of my winter night time rides out... Buy cheap buy twice?? Hell I could buy cheap and buy 10 times and still have the same performance for less than the cost of some expensive lights...

  21. #621
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    I agree, but consider this post #615 as an attitude of one man in a world where anybody "can possibly" tell what he wants. Back to the SS X2 - I spot the lighmalls version - head only with XM-L is about $19.5 and XM-L2 about $20 - so the clones are taking over and flooding the whole market probably, also with some loose or missing emitter boards.
    Last edited by MK96; 12-05-2013 at 11:21 AM. Reason: head only, not the whole set

  22. #622
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    post 615 lowered my IQ by reading it

    srsly uiflorin, step back and look at yourself

    +1 What Cat-man-do said.....

  23. #623
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    Any time someone starts whining about foreign products I am reminded of Paul's derailleurs and the made in the USA stickers on all my old Huffy's.Name:  1974 Huffy Pro Thunder.jpg
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    The wheel is a extension of the foot

  24. #624
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    Quote Originally Posted by MK96 View Post
    I agree, but consider this post #615 as an attitude of one man in a world where anybody "can possibly" tell what he wants. Back to the SS X2 - I spot the lighmalls version - head only with XM-L is about $19.5 and XM-L2 about $20 - so the clones are taking over and flooding the whole market probably, also with some loose or missing emitter boards.
    I Ordered this light from Lightmalls a couple of weeks ago. The description called it the Solarstorm...have most of the issues with the loose emitter boards been with the non-branded lights (Not printed with Solarstorm)? I got the version with the XM-L2 and the battery.

    I will take it apart when I get it to see what it looks like.
    Last edited by Jeepdude; 12-05-2013 at 03:53 PM.

  25. #625
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    Any of you tried this battery pack from Amazon? Amazon.com: Replacement 8.4V 6600mAh Rechargeable Battery Pack for Headlamp & Bicycle Light: Sports & Outdoors

    It is a 2S3P pack so even if it is using 2000mah cells, the run time should be decent.
    The battery that came with my light is really bad, didn't even last 1 hour at the highest setting.

  26. #626
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    I use my cheep x2 over my Duo on the head. The much much more expensive Duo seems to dim while riding more than 2 hours on high. My 20 buck x2 is brighter and does not dim !! The Duo is better made and smaller but just sitting on my bench. Better is something that you use, not hoping it will make it through the ride.

  27. #627
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    yeah someone in the battery thread recommended this and worked well for them. I'm not too trusting any of the batteries, I just bought these pannys off amazon Amazon.com: 4pcs Panasonic NCR18650B 3.6 Volt 18650 Battery 3400 mAh: Electronics and charge them individually in my i4 charger.

    Quote Originally Posted by fishymamba View Post
    Any of you tried this battery pack from Amazon? Amazon.com: Replacement 8.4V 6600mAh Rechargeable Battery Pack for Headlamp & Bicycle Light: Sports & Outdoors

    It is a 2S3P pack so even if it is using 2000mah cells, the run time should be decent.
    The battery that came with my light is really bad, didn't even last 1 hour at the highest setting.

  28. #628
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    first ride with my 2 xml2-u2's from lightmalls

    Took my first ride with the xml2-u2 solarstorm (head only) I got off lightmalls.com (using the panovo 4 cell cases off dx.com with panny cells). Mine seems to have pills that were not loose, but one lamp I posted earlier had one side with 2 pieces of glass and a shorter reflector for some reason.

    SolarStorm/FandyFire X2-20131204_214331.jpg
    Ordered the bar adapter from Action-LED-Lights

    Low single lamp
    SolarStorm/FandyFire X2-20131204_214233.jpg

    Medium single lamp
    SolarStorm/FandyFire X2-20131204_214241.jpg

    High single lamp
    SolarStorm/FandyFire X2-20131204_214251.jpg

    2 lamps on high - helmet and bar
    SolarStorm/FandyFire X2-20131204_214316.jpg

    For the money, I'm pretty happy with the results!

  29. #629
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    Do you have XML 2 or XML U2? I don't see any on LM with the new xml2 U2

    Quote Originally Posted by rvanderwerf View Post
    Took my first ride with the xml2-u2 solarstorm (head only) I got off lightmalls.com (using the panovo 4 cell cases off dx.com with panny cells). Mine seems to have pills that were not loose, but one lamp I posted earlier had one side with 2 pieces of glass and a shorter reflector for some reason.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Ordered the bar adapter from Action-LED-Lights

    Low single lamp
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Medium single lamp
    Click image for larger version. 

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    High single lamp
    Click image for larger version. 

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    2 lamps on high - helmet and bar
    Click image for larger version. 

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    For the money, I'm pretty happy with the results!

  30. #630
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    I got these xml2-u2's m1203 - Wholesale m1203 - Cheap m1203 Reviews Worldwide Free Shipping!!! and M1202 - Wholesale M1202 - Cheap M1202 Reviews Worldwide Free Shipping!!! they are actually on sale for usd $20 shipped (I paid 23.50). It took me almost a month to get them to Texas. I didn't bother with whatever crappy batteries come with it and got the head only. My last order through fasttech that included cells appears to never have made it and was sent back to them, so it seems its not worth the wait or multiple order attempts to get through customs for poor quality cells from china.

    For helmet I ordered their cheap head strap, cut off the elastic bits and used a micro size bungee cord to attach it to me helmet Wholesale 'm0069' at Wholesale Price Worldwide Free Shipping!!! for 2.80. No shifting around issues at all, also got an extension cable Wholesale 'M0068' at Wholesale Price Worldwide Free Shipping!!!. What don't like about the extension it it just plugs in, but doesn't screw in.

  31. #631
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    Quote Originally Posted by rvanderwerf View Post
    I got these xml2-u2's m1203 - Wholesale m1203 - Cheap m1203 Reviews Worldwide Free Shipping!!! and M1202 - Wholesale M1202 - Cheap M1202 Reviews Worldwide Free Shipping!!! they are actually on sale for usd $20 shipped (I paid 23.50). It took me almost a month to get them to Texas. I didn't bother with whatever crappy batteries come with it and got the head only. My last order through fasttech that included cells appears to never have made it and was sent back to them, so it seems its not worth the wait or multiple order attempts to get through customs for poor quality cells from china.
    I think these are XML2-T6, and not U2! There's no U2/T6 in the description...

  32. #632
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    Quote Originally Posted by toto408 View Post
    I think these are XML2-T6, and not U2! There's no U2/T6 in the description...
    hmm is there a way to tell the diff? I know how to tell xml from xml2 but the bins of each not sure.

  33. #633
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    Quote Originally Posted by fishymamba View Post
    Any of you tried this battery pack from Amazon? Amazon.com: Replacement 8.4V 6600mAh Rechargeable Battery Pack for Headlamp & Bicycle Light: Sports & Outdoors

    It is a 2S3P pack so even if it is using 2000mah cells, the run time should be decent.
    The battery that came with my light is really bad, didn't even last 1 hour at the highest setting.
    yeah I get 3 hr 20 min run time with the ssx2 on high with it.

  34. #634
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    They could be XM-L2 U2 of some weird 7500k 1D tint, they are actually cheaper than XM-L2 T6 with 3C/4C tint. The only way to solve bin question is to measure them

    Quote Originally Posted by rvanderwerf View Post
    hmm is there a way to tell the diff? I know how to tell xml from xml2 but the bins of each not sure.

  35. #635
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    Quote Originally Posted by rvanderwerf View Post
    hmm is there a way to tell the diff? I know how to tell xml from xml2 but the bins of each not sure.
    Why would you think they are XML2 U2s? It doesn't say that anywhere in the listing.

  36. #636
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    Just thought I'd mention that when I took the front off of mine I think I ended up getting a better thermal transferal when I reassembled it. The reason I say that is because now the lamp gets hot very fast when I turn it on high. That means the heat is getting to the outer lamp head faster. I still have yet to add thermal paste but due to the holiday season and shopping rush that might just have to what a while.

  37. #637
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    The Hope mount is perfect





    It holds perfectly the light, the lamp is now almost centered, easy to fit... A must have!

    HOPE fixation hanger VISION 1 & 2 LED - ALLTRICKS or Hope Universal Handlebar Mount | Chain Reaction Cycles

    Thanks kwarwick for the advice!

  38. #638
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    I havent pulled mine apart yet, but I think the # that my friends and I ordered are decent ones. We have done a few 2 hour rides (mostly on low with some high) and all the battereies are doing a decent job. nobody has been left stranded yet. even the batt level lights are not out to lunch.

    I am really happy with the beam pattern as a bar or head light. My diy use carlco12deg spot and a medium for the bar and they are horrid optics in my mind. the spot is so soft.

    all three were bought from fast tech in one order. I will update if there is pills once I find a small enough allen key (or flat head)

  39. #639
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    What is all the goop on the back to the housing and what is its purpose?
    Just curious.

    ****

  40. #640
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    Received my replacement light

    It's been 3 weeks since I emailed the Ebay vendor with the light that burned out after 5 minutes. I received the replacement light today and the quality, or at least the soldering seems a lot better than the old one. the circuit is less complicated too. the pills where screwed onto the heatsink body so I don't think I will have the issue of the lose pills/not dissipating heat properly. I also added a buttload of thermal grease just in case.

    My original post is #533 btw

    SolarStorm/FandyFire X2-20131211_065145.jpg

    SolarStorm/FandyFire X2-ligh1.jpg

  41. #641
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    That looks like the one I got.
    Did yours have Torx head screws?

  42. #642
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    Torx screws YES! it was a pain in the butt to remove them because I didn't have the right size, but I replaced them with phillips heads from my old light. Added the thermal grease on both sides of the pills. Now i'm gonna use this one as a helmet light.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gingerdawg View Post
    That looks like the one I got.
    Did yours have Torx head screws?

  43. #643
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    Quote Originally Posted by scar View Post



    What is all the goop on the back to the housing and what is its purpose?
    Just curious.

    ****
    It's some blu-tack, the kind of paste used to stick posters on walls...

    The first time I used the lamp during a rainy ride it went bad after 30 min (blocked in strobe mode), and when I opened the lamp 2 days after I found some water inside...
    Since this little mod no more problem Even if it's not perfectly tidy...


  44. #644
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    Anybody tried that to widen the light beam?

    Magicshine MJ-816 Side Lighthead Lens

  45. #645
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    Hi

    Got my SS/Fandyfire lookey likey from ebay and stripped it straight away for the thermal paste mod .
    Loose pills.
    Soldering seems fine (ish)

    During the rebuild fighting to get the "O" rings back in place I got thermal paste on the reflector . When I came to clean it off with a soft tissue I managed to take the chrome finish off ! :-(
    Man that stuff is fragile !!!???

    So where can I get replacement reflectors please ?
    Or could I replace with a lens , if so what type/make/model ?

    Thanks guys

    Fat Biker

  46. #646
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    I have a couple from my old/busted light, I can send them to you if you want. Pm me your address.


    Quote Originally Posted by Fat Biker View Post
    Hi

    Got my SS/Fandyfire lookey likey from ebay and stripped it straight away for the thermal paste mod .
    Loose pills.
    Soldering seems fine (ish)

    During the rebuild fighting to get the "O" rings back in place I got thermal paste on the reflector . When I came to clean it off with a soft tissue I managed to take the chrome finish off ! :-(
    Man that stuff is fragile !!!???

    So where can I get replacement reflectors please ?
    Or could I replace with a lens , if so what type/make/model ?

    Thanks guys

    Fat Biker

  47. #647
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    PM sent cheers :-)

  48. #648
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    Did I read somewhere this light heads output can be boosted via a small current sensing resistor mod or am I getting light threads crossed ?

  49. #649
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    Yes, there used to be such thread for modding the SS X2, but the subscription to threads is rather chaotic here and I can't find it But there are many types of drivers inside X2 - I counted about 6-7 types just from photos here ;-)

    found it finally ... here you go: Mod Solarstorm/Fandyfire X2?
    Last edited by MK96; 12-14-2013 at 11:55 AM. Reason: found it!

  50. #650
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    I am thinking right now how cheaper they can go with these head only versions at Lightmalls, the XM-L is $18.45 and XM-L2 version is 18.88 and you can use the $2 or $5 off coupon (depends on how much do you spend).

  51. #651
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    I just got my money back from Paypal, I ordered from Fasttech about 2 months ago x2 with battery so I could test there battery. Do not trust Fasttech the lied to me, I will never deal with them !! My ebay guy get's them to me in 8 days.

  52. #652
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    [QUOTE=OPC;10869415]It's been 3 weeks since I emailed the Ebay vendor with the light that burned out after 5 minutes. I received the replacement light today and the quality, or at least the soldering seems a lot better than the old one. the circuit is less complicated too. the pills where screwed onto the heatsink body so I don't think I will have the issue of the lose pills/not dissipating heat properly. I also added a buttload of thermal grease just in case.

    My original post is #533 btw



    I have 3 of these. First 2 have several rides and hours on them. The most resent one I ordered lasted 10 minutes. Guess I will try asking the ebay seller if he will replace the head.

  53. #653
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    Fast Tech has the solar storm X2 with two LED options, XM-L U2 and XM-L2 T6.Based on specs of those LEDs it seems like the XML2 T6 has higher efficiency.

    Any experience comparing them? I am mostly interested in light color, I prefer the yellow white to the blue white.

  54. #654
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    Quote Originally Posted by CrozCountry View Post
    Fast Tech has the solar storm X2 with two LED options, XM-L U2 and XM-L2 T6.Based on specs of those LEDs it seems like the XML2 T6 has higher efficiency.

    Any experience comparing them? I am mostly interested in light color, I prefer the yellow white to the blue white.
    Without going with a long explanation, you will likely prefer the XM-L2 T6. Most of the one's I've seen in beam photos look to be more of a neutral white.

  55. #655
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    That explains why my 7 XM-L2 tends to be neutral white and 7 XM-L cool white.

  56. #656
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    Guys if you are having problem with the "cr.p" batteries supplied, I have tried a Fluxient battery form a UK seller and I am please with the result, I have done a small review of the battery on my X2 thread, see

    SOLARSTORM X2 5000 Lumens - e-bay purchase - mini review

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    What a great thread; finally was inspired to register with MTBR after silently exploiting the site for information for years.

    Just ordered some variant of the "Solar Storm 5000 Lumens 2x CREE XM-L U2" from here: 5000 Lumens 2X CREE XM L U2 LED Cycling Bike Bicycle Light Headlamp Headlight | eBay.

    I'm looking forward to opening up the light and seeing which of the many flavors we've received.

    Regarding the price of lights vs. quality/durability etc., price is no predictor or at least is poorly correlated with results. These SS lights are another stab at equipping my wife's bike with lighting sufficient for her commute (mostly Burke-Gilman trail in Seattle, completely dark in many areas). Her first lighting attempt was a PlanetBike lamp that was good as a visibility aid but not so good for seeing, cost considerably more than the SS lamps and chewed through disposable batteries like they were pie at an eating contest. Next up was a L&M Stella 300 Dual setup. The L&M equipment was the rough equivalent of the SS lamps except that they were literally 10 times as expensive, beautifully made and after promptly filling with water in the Seattle rain (from a dive light manufacturer??) have proven impossible to repair due to the highly specialized housing arrangement*. Currently she's equipped with an NR Newt 350, a really excellent little lamp but not bright enough.

    One of the things that appeals to me about these SS lamps is that they appear to be easily disassembled for repairs/modifications.

    Regarding "5,000 lumens" perhaps the SS lamps are made in a universe with a slightly different Cosmological Constant, shipped via wormhole to our universe?? That would explain why they don't actually put out 5,000 lumens here where we live. :-)

    *(In fairness to L&M, they would have replaced the lamps on warranty but as the L&M cable arrangement was useless for a commuter bike I'd already modified it and thus didn't want to attempt pursuing the claim)

  58. #658
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbostrom View Post
    What a great thread; finally was inspired to register with MTBR after silently exploiting the site for information for years.....

    ....These SS lights are another stab at equipping my wife's bike with lighting sufficient for her commute (mostly Burke-Gilman trail in Seattle, completely dark in many areas).....

    ....The L&M equipment was the rough equivalent of the SS lamps except that they were literally 10 times as expensive, beautifully made and after promptly filling with water in the Seattle rain (from a dive light manufacturer??)
    Welcome to the Lights and Night riding sub forum.

    One of the SSX2 clones should make a decent commuter lamp. If using on a commuter trail it can be quite bright even on it's lowest level of light. Real important that it be aimed down when approaching on-coming traffic.

    Not sure how these clones would fair against being subjected to rain on a regular basis. Add some sealant to sure things up and you should be fine.

    On a side note I bought a rather nice dive torch from Manafont some years back. I never really used it all that much because it only put out about 500 lumen on high but it was a 3-mode torch ( H-M-L ) and had a separate flash menu ( three types of flash ). Would of made an excellent commuter light. Last year I got screwing around with it and decided to test how water proof it was. I sat the torch in a bowl of water planning to leave it there for maybe ten minutes. Then I promptly forgot about it. An hour later I stumbled upon it and removed it from the bowl. It was still working. After I dried it off I unscrewed the battery compartment and noted not a drop of water had gotten inside. Not bad for a $55 torch. Personally, I'd rather ride with a SSX2 but the torch is a great choice for paved trails ( not to mention the torches low mode is really low...great for not blinding anyone coming head on. ) ( * don't know if Manafont sells this torch anymore so if you want a link I'll have to search for it when I come home )

  59. #659
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    Indeed not a bad idea to give candidates a soaking prior to use.

    See this review

    Cheapy commuting headlight review - Solarstorm X2 - first impressions - Sydney Cyclist

    for a quick-and-dirty beam control approach for the SSX2 lights, per Cat-man-do's caution about possible obnoxious brightness on commuter paths. Aluminum tape turned inward on the inner lens might be a more efficient way of accomplishing the same thing, though in either case I wonder about overheating the light.

  60. #660
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    Thermal images with temperature

    At work we have a FLIR T440bx Infrared Camera, so after applying the thermal grease to the LED slugs I decided to see the heat dissipation.
    The test while not to scientific was 5 minutes on high with no fan and then 5 minutes on with a fan just to see how it handled. I wish I would have tested it before I applied the thermal grease to see the difference...

    Image 1 at start of test 28.3Deg C
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    at 1 minute 34.7deg C
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    Finally 5... almost 6 minutes
    Name:  IR_0440.jpg
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    at 1 minute with fan on, Used a small 12V fan about 3 feet away
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    at 2 minutes with fan on
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    Maintaining at 41.4Deg C after 12 minutes of On time, 5ish with no fan and 6ish with fan on
    Name:  IR_0458.jpg
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    Hope this helps anyone

  61. #661
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    FLIR are so cool. Hard to see from the pics but when started up for cold where did the heat started to come from? Was it where the thermal grease was applied?

  62. #662
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    With this camera it seems that the heat was uniform, I was expecting a bigger difference in the thermal image, but it didn't happen. We have another camera with a different thermal spectrum that I can use on Monday and see if we get a better idea of the hot spots.


    Quote Originally Posted by machine4321 View Post
    FLIR are so cool. Hard to see from the pics but when started up for cold where did the heat started to come from? Was it where the thermal grease was applied?

  63. #663
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    Great photos; would be fun to see a movie spanning a couple of minutes from startup.

    I just read something dismaying about these lights that may require their modification for commuter use. Is it true that the battery level is displayed continuously as long as the power cable is plugged in? If so, I'll need to be adding an inline switch to my S.O.'s unit when it arrives, depending on how much juice the level indicators suck up (general philosophy in our house is that we disassemble neither cars nor bikes when we park).

  64. #664
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    Nice photos. So there is no thermal grease between the LED boards and the case stock?

  65. #665
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    In march 2013, i bought Solarstorm x2 from this seller laptopartsupplier on eBay, and it is working nice since. The only thing i am thinking of is making beam a little bit wider, but how?

    In december, i bought from ebay (from another seller), the Solarstorm x2 for my friend. This thing died after 1 ride. I went to local tech, he told that it is completely dead, everything is fried inside. I have beaten a replacement head out of this seller. Yesterday it worked, will see what is next.

    Now i am thinking of purchasing Solarstorm x3 from the same seller that i bought mine in march.
    Last edited by NazZaR; 01-15-2014 at 04:47 AM.
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  66. #666
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    There's been a problem with some of these lights where the LED slug is not making very good contact with the heatsink body so they overheat, mine did the same thing, rode down the street and fried. Luckily the ebay seller sent me a new one. You can apply thermal grease to the slugs and that should help with the heating...

    Quote Originally Posted by NazZaR View Post
    In march 2013, i bought Solarstorm x2 from this seller laptopartsupplier on eBay, and it is working nice since. The only thing i am thinking of is making beam a little bit wider, but how?

    In december, i bought from ebay (from another seller), the Solarstorm x2 for my friend. This thing died after 1 ride. I went to local tech, he told that it is completely dead, everything is fried inside. I have beaten a replacement head out of this seller. Yesterday it worked, will see what is next.

    Now i am thinking of purchasing Solarstorm x3 from the same seller that i bought mine in march.

  67. #667
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    Just like you did earlier?
    Name:  854017d1386785885t-solarstorm-fandyfire-x2-ligh1.jpg
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    Quote Originally Posted by OPC View Post
    There's been a problem with some of these lights where the LED slug is not making very good contact with the heatsink body so they overheat, mine did the same thing, rode down the street and fried. Luckily the ebay seller sent me a new one. You can apply thermal grease to the slugs and that should help with the heating...
    Last edited by NazZaR; 01-15-2014 at 04:47 AM.
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  68. #668
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    YES! to the front and back side, there isn't a lot of meat for the slugs to dissipate heat to, the thermal grease is helping.


    Quote Originally Posted by NazZaR View Post
    Just like you did earlier?
    Name:  854017d1386785885t-solarstorm-fandyfire-x2-ligh1.jpg
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  69. #669
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    Ok, thank you!
    Quote Originally Posted by OPC View Post
    YES! to the front and back side, there isn't a lot of meat for the slugs to dissipate heat to, the thermal grease is helping.
    Last edited by NazZaR; 01-15-2014 at 04:47 AM.
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  70. #670
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    I don't know why you have all that thermal grease on the front of the star. That does nothing. The only place you really want it is on the interface between the slug and the outside housing.

  71. #671
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    Quote Originally Posted by varider View Post
    I don't know why you have all that thermal grease on the front of the star. That does nothing. The only place you really want it is on the interface between the slug and the outside housing.
    varider gets it.
    A thin coating on the interface....that's it.
    As a matter of fact....a little paste goes a long way.
    Too much and too thick....and it becomes an insulator.

  72. #672
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    Just purchased SolarStorm x3. Looking forward to testing it.
    SolarStorm/FandyFire X2-solarstormx3_zps363076d0.jpg

    By the way, SolarStorm x4!!!
    Endurolampa / Pannlampa SolarStorm X4 CREE U2, 2600 lumen
    Last edited by NazZaR; 01-15-2014 at 04:47 AM.
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  73. #673
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    I really like my x3, it has a very good spot in center. I think it's worth the extra cash compared to the X2.

  74. #674
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    Quote Originally Posted by dgw7000 View Post
    I really like my x3, it has a very good spot in center. I think it's worth the extra cash compared to the X2.
    Does it have wider beam?
    Last edited by NazZaR; 01-15-2014 at 04:47 AM.
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  75. #675
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    Yes it does have wider beam also, the one have is made better than all 3 of my x2.

  76. #676
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    That is very good . Thanks!
    Quote Originally Posted by dgw7000 View Post
    Yes it does have wider beam also, the one have is made better than all 3 of my x2.
    Last edited by NazZaR; 01-15-2014 at 04:47 AM.
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  77. #677
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    What seems to be the general consensus on the best place to buy a SolarStorm X2 or X3. I'm more concerned with the build quality of the light than the price.

    Has anybody purchased one from Lightmalls recently?

    Buy SolarStorm X2 2000-lumen Dual Head Bicycle light With 2xCree XM-L U2 LED 4 Modes(4*18650 Battery) - lightmalls led bike online Worldwide Free Shipping!!!

    I'm currently using one of the original Magicshine Lights from Geomangear with the upgraded Geomangear battery. Glad to report that both the light and the battery are still running strong after 3 years of use.

    I'm now looking for a handlebar/backup light and the SolarStorm X2 or X3 seems to fit the bill.
    Current bikes:
    2015 Framed Alaskan Carbon
    2015 Framed Alaskan Alloy
    2012 Trek Superfly 100 AL Pro
    2014 Giant TCX SLR2

  78. #678
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    I like this seller, idem # on ebay 261299894900. Fast free shipping 7-9 days.

  79. #679
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    I ordered one from lightmalls, should be here soon...

  80. #680
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    Can anyone confirm the pannovo 4 cell box will fit with protected panasonic batteries. I think people have run the unprotected but want to know if there are any issues with protected. Thanks guys.
    3po armorless, the first weight weenie.

  81. #681
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    Quote Originally Posted by protocol_droid View Post
    Can anyone confirm the pannovo 4 cell box will fit with protected panasonic batteries. I think people have run the unprotected but want to know if there are any issues with protected. Thanks guys.
    It fits my panasinic 3400mah ones.

  82. #682
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    Thanks!
    3po armorless, the first weight weenie.

  83. #683
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    Idea! SolarStorm X4 / New model of SolarStorm X2

    Quote Originally Posted by NazZaR View Post
    Just found this website thanks to your link

    There is a few impressive light threads on this forum from a lot of dedicated users, does anyone have any personal experiences of the X4 lamp? it has been sold on Ebay / Alibaba for a while now.

    I also want to give you a tip regarding new models, there appears to be a new X2 model coming up in a few weeks / months with improved heat sinks Its not 100% sure but im starting to receive some indications from my suppliers.

    I apologies for my bad English, its not my original language.

    Kindly regards
    August Eriksson
    Pannlampa, hjälmlampa, ficklampa & 18650 batteri - Ledlysen.se

  84. #684
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ledlysen.se View Post
    Just found this website thanks to your link

    There is a few impressive light threads on this forum from a lot of dedicated users, does anyone have any personal experiences of the X4 lamp? it has been sold on Ebay / Alibaba for a while now.

    I also want to give you a tip regarding new models, there appears to be a new X2 model coming up in a few weeks / months with improved heat sinks Its not 100% sure but im starting to receive some indications from my suppliers.

    I apologies for my bad English, its not my original language.

    Kindly regards
    August Eriksson
    Pannlampa, hjälmlampa, ficklampa & 18650 batteri - Ledlysen.se
    It has a bad internal heat transfer design. There was a thread about it. I would stay away from it.

  85. #685
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    Yes i understand, i recommend the lamp to only be used while moving (with cooling wind), is it possible this thread you refer to?

    Solarstorm XT30 / XT40 - anyone?

  86. #686
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    Yeah, that's the thread.
    I think it's a waste of money. I would stick with the proven performers, solarstorm x2, duo clone, single xml light, triple xml etc.

  87. #687
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    or even with 880 clone, Skyray 6T6, Skyray S6 and 7-up purple and grey XM-L T6. They perform all very good IMHO.

  88. #688
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    Got a problem with my X2. Light is stuck permanently on in high mode. Switch no longer works/cycles. Teardown has revealed no dry solders and switch is working. Anyone experienced this and fixed it? Possibly the driver board is cactus.

  89. #689
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    Sounds like the switch will need replaced !!

  90. #690
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    Quote Originally Posted by dgw7000 View Post
    Yes it does have wider beam also, the one have is made better than all 3 of my x2.
    Does it have different reflectors and lens? If so maybe we can fit them on the X2 to get the wider beam.

    Lightmalls just cut prices to $27 (including battery and charger), what a steal. Probably because of the new design. Not that at $34 it wasn't a steal already.

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  92. #692
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    Quote Originally Posted by TigWorld View Post
    Got a problem with my X2. Light is stuck permanently on in high mode. Switch no longer works/cycles. Teardown has revealed no dry solders and switch is working. Anyone experienced this and fixed it? Possibly the driver board is cactus.
    Just because the switch clicks doesn't mean it's not the switch. If it were me I'd take the rubber boot off the switch and see if I can get some WD-40 into the switch to ( maybe ) free up the contacts. Worst case scenario if the driver is bad you have to buy another $24 light head.

  93. #693
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    Looks interesting, I'd like to see the inside of one of these. Looks like the front doesn't come off. Likely the bezels in the front come off but I bet it would be more difficult to mod. Anyway, If the boards have better contact perhaps better heat sinking. You should be able to take the rear off to have a look-see.

  94. #694
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    If he has a multimeter he can measure the voltage across the button contacts. Just in case everything is OK with the driver board and the button is not stuck somewhere

    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    Just because the switch clicks doesn't mean it's not the switch. If it were me I'd take the rubber boot off the switch and see if I can get some WD-40 into the switch to ( maybe ) free up the contacts. Worst case scenario if the driver is bad you have to buy another $24 light head.

  95. #695
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    All button switches in bike lamps are just on/off switches and they work or not. The mode arrangement takes place in the drivers chip. So if you have just one mode then it is probably the driver that is not working. If you have stuck in high mode it has probably gone in to a direct drive. That is not good for LEDs.

  96. #696
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    I think there is a little bit difference between button and switch. Switch has 2 positions on/off and button just one - press & release . Most of bike lights cycle modes using button if they have only one button/switch. But you are right it seems that driver is gone bad.

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    My understanding always was, that 'switch' is general term for some kind of electrical contact controlled by external means (regardless from being momentary or triggering one), while the word 'button' refers to the some mechanical element to be actually pressed by operator's finger - that is, "human interface" to switch...

  98. #698
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    Exactly. Button is a button. Switch is an electrical element and there are many types...on/off, 3 position, multi position, some have built in resistors for mode operation on direct drived leds...
    there are forward and reverse clicky switches...there are electronic and mechanical switches... but they all have practicaly the same button.

  99. #699
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    OK, I choose wrong terms to explain but you are following me and I'm following you

  100. #700
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    Looks interesting, I'd like to see the inside of one of these. Looks like the front doesn't come off. Likely the bezels in the front come off but I bet it would be more difficult to mod. Anyway, If the boards have better contact perhaps better heat sinking. You should be able to take the rear off to have a look-see.
    It looks like there is a seam in the middle. Maybe it opens to two parts, that will make access easy.

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