My next attempt....- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    My next attempt....

    I've got a bit distracted from lights recently. I designed and testing a couple of driver and battery control circuits but never actually got around to building them as someone gave me a lathe
    Nice as that sounds it took me about 3 weeks to rebuild it from a box of bits, fix the speed controller and get it all working.
    But the good news is that it works now so I decided to put it to some proper use.......


    the only problem is that that it is a very little lathe so doing that has taken about 2 hours so far and I have a fair bit of work to go so I don't think I will be churning them out like Troutie and Deesta et al.

    Toby

  2. #2
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    Good luck with that, can't wait to see what you design. There is so much you can do with a lathe.
    We can bomb the world to pieces, but we can't bomb it into peace -Michael Franti

  3. #3
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    Thanks!
    Most things have already been done here so don't expect anything too exciting from this one but I'll update this thread when I have more to show for it.

    Toby

  4. #4
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    Looking good so far Toby,
    I was looking at the pic trying to work out if it was just a small chuck or a REALLY BIG light
    Keep the pics coming on progress. I think it's more impressive what's being prodced in sheds than what I can do on a CNC. Mass produced is good but homemade is always better...
    Steve

  5. #5
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    Just a small chuck
    (the OD is about 34mm at the moment)

  6. #6
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    btw. my next job is to machine an O ring grove in front of the cover glass to hold it in (like on your Triple XPE light post)
    I think that could be challenge to get right 1st time......

  7. #7
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    Nice!!! Post up pics of cutting the groove for the o-ring... I would like to see any pics of actual machining of these parts... I have recently been given a really old tiny lathe that I am going to figure out how to get working over the next few weeks... so this will be super helpful!

  8. #8
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    Nice one Toby , that chuck looks brand new .
    there is something therapeuatic about turning metal and making something from scratch.

    Look out for a 4 jaw chuck then you are not then limited to just making round things

  9. #9
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    tamen00: I am not sure you want to copy my technique, the last time I used a lathe was over 20 years ago at school! But yes, I'll post some pictures when I work out how to do the groove.

    Troutie: Yes, the whole lathe looks like it has had very little use but it was in a bit of a state - a box of bits and most of the semiconductors on the driver board were blown. Also I still haven't managed to get the head and tailstocks even remotely lined up so drilling holes is "interesting" Still, it was free and it works so I shouldn't complain!

    It did come with two identical 4 jaw chucks which look like they haven't even been out of their wrapping yet

    it is very therapeutic but also very slow as it struggles to take more than 0.5mm off at a time. I am already dreaming of getting something bigger. On the plus side, I needed to get the lens and cover glass out without removing the housing from the chuck so I just picked the whole lathe up and tipped them out

  10. #10
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    well, another few minutes in the garage and I have a tool ground ready to make the groove.

    It looks big but the tip is only 1.8mm across. I am hoping tomorrow night I will get a chance to see if it works although looking at that picture I might grind a bit more clearance on the right 1st.

  11. #11
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    Very Cool!!! I was wondering what a tool would look like for cutting the groove for the o-rings to hold the lenses in... This is probably going to end up being one of my favorite threads!!

  12. #12
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    Well, just for you the next installment

    I tried the tool shown above and it was horrible! Lots of squeal and chatter and very little cutting. So I reground it - it is now only 0.8mm wide and has much more clearance (front, left, right rake).
    Here it is, sorry about the dodgy picture - it looks much better ground in the flesh, honest!


    then the results- it still squealed and chattered horribly but at least it cut reasonable well....

    the sides of the cut is ok but the bottom doesn't look nice. Still, it did the job.
    btw. the front groove was just a test, it will be machined off as the front of the light is longer than needed.

    Toby

  13. #13
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    Thank again for the pics! I am getting my lathe up and running this weekend so being one step behind you is going to come in handy I will post all of the messed up and broken things I create over the next few weeks if I can get it working.

    I have never tried any kind of metalworking like this... should be pretty fun learning experience. I am going to learn via this thread... searching the web for things... and ruining lots of aluminum... just hope I come out of this with all my fingers attached!

  14. #14
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    well good luck and don't forget to post the pictures

    There will be no more progress on mine for a while as I am off on holiday.

  15. #15
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    I was wrong, my o-rings arrived today and i had a hour to spare so I managed a bit more
    The groove needed opening up a bit and the excess on the front removed.....


    here it is with the LED/Lens/Glass/O-ring fitted. The o-ring is twisted in this picture but I can sort that out on final assembly.

  16. #16
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    Very nice! The o-ring solution to hold everything together is very clean looking. Have a great holiday and I look forward to additional updates!

  17. #17
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    ok. back from my holiday and a bit more done.....

    the back tidied up and holes drilled to take the screws that hold the LED star and the outlet for the power cable......


    and here it is with the cable fitted......



    All I have to do now is decide how I am mounting it then I can do the final assembly.

  18. #18
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    You've done a fantastic job, that lathe must be tiny.

  19. #19
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    I am already dreaming of getting something bigger.
    On the plus side, I needed to get the lens and cover glass out without removing the housing from the chuck
    so I just picked the whole lathe up and tipped them out
    lol .....
    lookin good Toby!, ...... where is the driver going?
    ...Scun.thorpe, UK

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by yetibetty
    You've done a fantastic job, that lathe must be tiny.
    it is too small really. This job is taking an age because I can't take much off in each pass as it just overloads it

    Quote Originally Posted by HEY HEY ITS HENDO
    .. where is the driver going?
    In the battery pack. I am making my own controller and putting it it the battery pack allows better battery protection. Also there is more spare space there and it keeps the light head simple- my original target was a simple light head I can duplicate and just add in series if I want more light.
    The only downside is that I wont have any thermal management but I prefer to do that by ensuring I have enough heatsinking to run at full power all the time anyway.

    Toby

  21. #21
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    Wow, a superb little light!
    I'm interested to see the beam shots as I've read good reviews on DX for those optics. I have a bunch waiting to go into my 4 x XR-E light!

  22. #22
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    Well, it is now finished (except I now have to do a proper control cct and battery...)


    I didn't use the DX1920 in the end (although that is what is shown in the previous pics), I used a cree 8 deg optic from Cutter. It is physically almost identical to the 1920 but the beam has more spill and a less defined spot.
    The Cree beam looks like this.....


    Br
    Toby

  23. #23
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    summary

    now it is done I thought I should summarise what I have used........
    XRE R2 on a 20mm star.
    Cree XLSL 8deg optic from Cutter.
    27mm cover glass from DX
    1.78mm section, 25.12mm ID O ring.(from polymax.co.uk)

    The cable is a Nokia charger adaptor, CA-44 with one end removed. This gives a good quality and fairly small connector (but not waterproof) and conveniently allows me to use an old Nokia charger to test the light (they give 800mA constant current).

    The cable is retained in a very simple way. The cable is 3.4mm dia so the hole through the case is 3.5mm. I then bored it out from the inside to 4mm (to about half depth or 5mm). The cable outer is tightly wrapped with 0.6mm dia solid wire which is then pulled into the recess. A smear of silicon seals it.
    I tested this on some scrap cable and I reckon I would tear the cable outer before pulling it out!

    In terms of space needed this system is much more compact than any other system I have seen. However, the downside is that it needs a fairly thick back surface, in this light the back is 10mm thick although reckon that could be reduced to 6mm if I was careful.

    The black plastic bits in the picture are the retaining "nuts" for the screws which hold the LED star in place.

  24. #24
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    it would be great to get a sense or proportion if you could hold it
    or a pic next to a playing card etc
    Thanks
    ...Scun.thorpe, UK

  25. #25
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    it would be great to get a sense or proportion if you could hold it
    or a pic next to a playing card
    Now we're going to need an "MTBR standard" for playing cards.....poker size or bridge size? Which is Troutie using? I believe he started the trend.

    JZ
    It's not about speed, it's about lack of control.

  26. #26
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    a good point but I don't have any playing cards on my desk at work

    how about this?


    it is about 33mm dia by 32mm long. I reckon I could reduce both dimensions by about 3 or 4 mm without too much difficulty but on the other hand the extra size helps with heat.

  27. #27
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    wow, now that, really is, teeny weeny!
    love the idea of a remote driver to keep the size down,
    this could be the next step ..... 2 x 20mm triples on a remote driver/control switch!
    ...Scun.thorpe, UK

  28. #28
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    Well, you could go a lot smaller with XPEs but for triples I think you might need some thermal management
    with this R2 running at 800mA it gets to about 40degC when in still air (about 20degC ambient).

    here is an outdoor beam shot, I think they show a lot more than the ceiling shots...

    the back hedge is about 100 feet away and for reference this is a single MCE plus Rocket SS running at 500mA a die.....


    I think they go well together, the MCE on the bar gives good coverage and the R2 on my helmet to get the distance and round corners.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by JimZinVT
    Now we're going to need an "MTBR standard" for playing cards.....poker size or bridge size? Which is Troutie using? I believe he started the trend.

    JZ

    I never knew the were different sized cards I will put the standard ruler with the card next time


    Nice one Toby you must be well pleased with it .

  30. #30
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    fairly pleased but I am already listing the things to do better next time

  31. #31
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    that looks verynice and compact.. I have really enjoyed following this thread and seeng he pics of the lathe and process used... Verycool!

    Maybe next project try an xpe triple in the same style housing with some fins cut into it... Will definately get hotter, however the performane even at 400 ma is pretty amazing fir such a tiny light. I have made a few lights similar to this one (not as nice though) and recently completed a triple and isa night and day difference!!

    I should hopefully have my lathe up and running soon so I can add some more pics to your thread!!!

  32. #32
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    yes, I really need to look at XPEs. Trouble is I now have a box full of optics for XRE and MCE and it is a shame not to use some of them!
    Still, I think lights will need to take a lower priority for a while as it is coming up to summer now. At least that gives me a few months to monitor what is happening with the LEDs and optics and make a decision on my next one before the autumn

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