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Thread: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

  1. #1
    Flashaholic* mobile1's Avatar
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    Wink2 GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    Dear GatLight V2 owner
    Most of you probably saw that we have finally delivered the V3 version. After having delivered the V3 we would like to open an interest thread here regarding upgrading GatLight V2s.

    The V2 was revolutionary in such that it introduced the first variable brightness driver (contrary to Surefire's Titan claims), however we've always felt that the V2 was not perfect. The brightness control was a bit flickery, the battery would drain if the knob was not completely in the off position. And also the driver falls out when the battery is removed.

    Having just rolled out the V3 we feel that we've finally mastered the technique and we would like to get the chance to upgrade the V2 GatLights to what we feel a perfect user interface for the V2. This will NOT include a push button switch like the V3, however a smooth variable brightness control, an upgrade to the current LED generation and also a fix for the battery drain if the light is not completely turned off.
    Our goal with this upgrade is to bring the V2 to a level where we feel it is perfect for what we intended it to be.

    There are 2 ways we can achieve this:

    Option 1: We take the existing V2 driver, and upgrade the LED to a Seoul P4 Led as well as make some modifications to the driver that reduces any flickering. Also we add a retaining ring which will keep the driver in the front housing (so no more falling out of the driver). However the battery drain if you do not completely turn off the light will not be fixed. You'll end up with a smoothly working light, still optimized for use with rechargeables (drainage only to a save level), upgraded to the latest LED generation. Cost of this upgrade would be less than $50. The LED would be driven very hard at max (1000mA).

    Option 2: In this option we would install a V3 driver in the GatLight V3. You'll get smooth brightness changes, when the light turns on it would turn on at full brightness... so no more battery drain if the light is not completely rotated to the end - since the light turns on at max brightness than as you keep turning it would dim, you'll see that the light is on.. and if you rotate it to when the light is off, it is off nor more drain (no need to rotate all the way back). Also we'd install a retaining ring to keep the driver in the front. V3 drivers are optimized for primary cells, however also work with rechargeables however they drain them to a level which will significantly shorten your rechargeables life. So ideal use here is with a primary 123 cell. Doing this option would mean making new circuit boards, new v3 driver etcs. and costs would be higher than $50, probably $60.

    Option 3: Basically Option 1 and 2 combined. You'll send your existing driver and we'll upgrade it as described, and you'll get a V3 driver for use with primaries.


    Generally our goal with this is not to make money - the prices are pretty much our costs. You will be required to send in your GatLight for the change, to prevent that our drivers go out and are used for other projects.

    AT THIS POINT THIS IS ONLY AN INTEREST THREAD. LET US KNOW WHAT YOU THINK AND IN WHICH OPTION YOU'D BE INTERESTED IN.
    If there is interest we'd like to do this (whether its just option 1 or Option 2 and 3 as well is open at this point). Also time when we'll do this is open at the moment.
    Last edited by mobile1; 08-02-2007 at 10:44 PM.

  2. #2
    Flashaholic* ArsMachina's Avatar
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    Hi Walter,

    great to hear, I really would like to get my V2s upgraded with V3 drivers.

    But I dont like the idea of sending in the compltete lights to you for three reasons:

    1) The lights will travel over the ocean again twice what means two times the possibility of getting lost

    2) If you insure the shipping at the value of the lights, shipping from Germany to USA will be horrible expensive.

    3) If you insure the shipping at the value of the lights by sending them back to me the customs will be calculated on the insurance value, what means that I will have to pay around $100 of taxes per light!

    So I hope that you will find another way, at least for your overseas customers.
    Maybe it is enough, when we are sending in the driver to you for exchanging it....

    Jochen

  3. #3
    Flashaholic* AndyTiedye's Avatar
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    I am interested in option 2.

  4. #4
    Flashaholic* Miciobigio's Avatar
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    Quote Originally Posted by ArsMachina View Post
    Hi Walter,

    great to hear, I really would like to get my V2s upgraded with V3 drivers.

    But I dont like the idea of sending in the compltete lights to you for three reasons:

    1) The lights will travel over the ocean again twice what means two times the possibility of getting lost

    2) If you insure the shipping at the value of the lights, shipping from Germany to USA will be horrible expensive.

    3) If you insure the shipping at the value of the lights by sending them back to me the customs will be calculated on the insurance value, what means that I will have to pay around $100 of taxes per light!

    So I hope that you will find another way, at least for your overseas customers.
    Maybe it is enough, when we are sending in the driver to you for exchanging it....

    Jochen
    I agree 100 %
    Marco V.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    Yes, I would be interested. Not sure which option, possibly option 2. Also, since I have 2 V.2s, I'm wondering if I'd keep one in it's original configuration?
    Tim

  6. #6

    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    I am interested and don't mind sending the Gatlight for driver exchange but I am not sure that you can prevent others from using the driver for other projects because if they really want to they can just use the driver and leave the Gatlight empty.
    Oh, that also means you will keep my V2 driver too, so the $50 - $60 is for trade-in upgrade in a way?

  7. #7
    Flashaholic kiely23+'s Avatar
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    I´m interested in option 2!
    "haben ist besser als brauchen"

  8. #8
    Flashaholic* Eric242's Avatar
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    Quote Originally Posted by ArsMachina View Post
    3) If you insure the shipping at the value of the lights by sending them back to me the customs will be calculated on the insurance value, what means that I will have to pay around $100 of taxes per light!
    Hi Jochen,

    I agree with you and find it unneccessary to ship the lights around the globe twice again. If I´d be within the US I had no problems shipping it to Walter.

    Just one remark regarding the customs: You can contact customs before you ship the light, tell them you need to send it back to the US for repair and get specific documents for that cause. When the light gets back you just have to pay customs for the amount you are charged for the repair.

    But still, it is much easier if the Gatlight V2 owner from abroad could send the sandwich for exchange/modification to Walter, I agree.

    Eric

  9. #9
    Flashaholic* karlthev's Avatar
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    I'm "on the fence" with this one--indecisive at this point.


    Karl

  10. #10

    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    I think I prefer option 2, but honestly either 1 or 2 is fine with me. Count me in.

    -DF
    KineticParadox ...a personal web space with my CBA Battery Testing and my LED Bin Coding Charts.

  11. #11
    Flashaholic* ArsMachina's Avatar
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    Hi Eric,

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric242 View Post
    Just one remark regarding the customs: You can contact customs before you ship the light, tell them you need to send it back to the US for repair and get specific documents for that cause. When the light gets back you just have to pay customs for the amount you are charged for the repair.
    yes, this is possible and I know this procedure quite well, as I used it once some time ago for an other item.

    You need to go to go to the customs twice and to the postoffice twice and you need to take pictures of the items inside the shipping box before it is finally sealed by the customs. Then finally you can ship it.
    Did I already mention the huge paperwork needed?
    Finally this took around half a day and might be worth it on really expensive items, but not for one or two flashlights.

    Jochen

  12. #12
    Flashaholic* Lunal_Tic's Avatar
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    Won't you have to replace the optic if you change to the SSC?

    -LT
    lunal tic (n)
    a distinctive behavioral trait or quirk directly related to or caused by light [15th cent. Latin lunaris. Ultimately from an IE word meaning “light,”] and [Early 19th cent. Italian ticchio.] see also: moon quirk

  13. #13
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    Walter / Kyle,

    Very nice offer!
    I'll pick option 2 for 2 lights.

    Also, please think about designing a V3 module for the precious V1s.


    Thanks
    Ray
    Last edited by Amorphous; 08-03-2007 at 01:14 PM.

  14. #14

    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    Quote Originally Posted by mobile1 View Post
    we've always felt that the V2 was not perfect. The brightness control was a bit flickery, the battery would drain if the knob was not completely in the off position. And also the driver falls out when the battery is removed.
    Walter - I'm not trying to flame you here, but I have always felt let-down with the issues you mentioned above about the V2. IMO, these issues ought to be fixed by Lumacraft at the Company's expense as the light was not delivered as advertised. It did factor in my decision in NOT buying a V3 until I was able to read feed-back on the V3 from those that got one.

    $50-$60 for the LED and optic swap sounds reasonable, so if this is all rolled into one "upgrade" I suppose that does not sound too bad. But the defects in the V2 ought, IMO, to be fixed regardless of whether the owner wishes to spring for a LED swap or not.

  15. #15

    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    Just to clarify a few things.

    Right now this thread is intended to be an interest thread. If there are not enough people interested in this idea than we probably cannot do it right now. However the next time we build V3 drivers we will fabricate more than needed so that they are available to V2 owners.

    The costs shown below are estimates at this time. However the final cost should be within +/-15%.

    Option 1:
    We will take your V2 driver and add a premium bin SSC P4 led. Then we replace the variable brightness components with the same ones used on the V3. In essence this creates a hybrid module that is half V2 and half V3. We are not just fixing the V2 module we are replacing parts of it to make it more like the V3 module. This option does not require as much time as option 2 because we have most of the parts in stock.

    Characteristics:
    Optimized for Secondary (rechargeable) cells Outputs about 1000mA at full power. This module will not work very well with primaries because the voltage drop at load. The brightness adjustment starts at low and increases as the knob is turn CW. Because the brightness adjusts from 0-100% the user must confirm that the battery is disconnected when the light is in the off position, otherwise the battery will drain slowly.

    Estimated Cost: ~$30 + shipping

    Option 2:
    We replace your V2 module with a V3 module. This option will make the V2 function the same way as the V3. This option will require more time because we will have to fabricate more circuit boards and other components.

    Characteristics:
    Optimized for primary (non-rechargeable) cells Outputs about 700mA at full power. This module will work fine well with rechargeable cells however the drive current will be between 1100 and 1200mA. This means that the light can only be used for short durations if rechargeable are used. The brightness adjustment starts at high and decreases as the knob is turn CW. Because the brightness adjusts from 100-0% the battery drain issue is not a problem. The user can easily see when the battery disconnects.

    Estimated Cost: ~$50 + shipping

    Sending lights back:
    The reason we request that the lights be sent back is to ensure that the unit as a whole is functioning correctly. However we do understand the international shipping issues so we will take just the driver module but it is up to the user to install it and adjust the battery contact on the knob. We will make an instruction on how to install and adjust the light so that we can make it as easy on everyone as possible.

    Drivers for other projects:
    The reason we wanted only V2 owners to participate in this is because we do not have the ability right now to just sell the modules to anyone that wants one. The costs for this upgrade are purely our costs (no markup), if we were selling this driver for other uses the costs would have to be higher. With that said, if you participate in the upgrade there is not any way for us to regulate how the drivers are used, I’m sure some may end up in other projects.

    V2 functionality issues:
    The reason we are offering this upgrade is because we feel that the V3 functionality is nicer than that of the V2. The V2 was designed to operate in the manor that it does. Some of the V2 units did have some issues that we offered to fix for free, however the majority of V2 units work correctly as intended. We do not see this as a warrantee upgrade because the design and functionality is different on the new driver. If we had the V3 driver designed when we built the V2 units than that would have been ideal, however that did not happen. Also the V3 and V2 drivers may be similar but there are some differences between them. In some peoples opinions the V2 is the better choice because of the way the brightness adjustment works as well as the type of battery it is optimized for.

    Benefits of the upgrade VS repair:
    The additional benefit to this upgrade is the Seoul P4 premium bin LED. If we were just fixing a V2 we would not replace the LED for free. The minimum we would charge just to change the LED would be ~$25, so for just $5 more we are replacing many other parts of the driver to make it a bit nicer. One of the other things that will be replaced is the battery contact. We will be replacing the contact with gold plated components to increase the efficiency of the driver. Lastly with the upgrade we will be installing a retainer that will keep the module from coming out when the battery is removed. Some people thought that this was a flaw in the design of the V2 however it was completely intentional. The V2 was only marketed to the users of CPF and therefore we knew that many of them would want to be able to get the driver out without hassle. This is why there was no retention method.

    Hopefully this will help to clarify a few things. We are offering this because the V2 Gatlight product line is a unique light that was only built in a limited run. Because of that the light has become somewhat of a collectors item and we want to help to increase the value of the light for that purpose.

    If anyone has any questions please feel free to PM Walter or my self.

    Regards,

    Kyle
    Lumencraft

  16. #16

    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    Kyle and Walter

    I want my V2 to work really well! No holds barred. If we are going to do this lets go all the way, no battery drain, new LED, new converter board. If bright to dim is what it takes to make it work properly, then go for it. It is a simple and elegant UI.

    Option 2 for me please.

    I would prefer you find a service where we can just return the driver and you replace it with a V3 driver and new LED. We can insert the new driver and retaining clip ourselves. If the drivers get lost in the mail it will not be a big deal. My stainless V2 is beautiful and I do not want to ship it anywhere. Shipping the lights around the US makes me nervous let alone over seas.

    I am super happy your offer is for a driver that uses a primary battery and runs the light at 700mA. I always wanted that as I do not prefer to use a rechargeable in your light my self.

    Do not worry about the optic, the old one will work good enough.

    This is a big undertaking you are considering and it will cost you many weeks of work. I think it is very kind of you to suggest it. Count me in 100%.


    Cheers
    Dave

  17. #17

    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    PS. Jump on this quickly people! I bet it will only be offered just this one time.

  18. #18

    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    In regards to the optics:

    The optic will not be replaced because in our tests we show that it actually works much better with the P4 than it did with the Luxeons. The V1 and V2 had sort of a square beam but the P4 makes it a perfect circular beam with lots of throw.

    -Kyle

  19. #19

    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    Thanks for clearing a few things up, Kyle, and the additional details.

    I would opt for Option 2.

  20. #20
    Flashaholic* dmdrewitt's Avatar
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    I'm interested in an upgrade, but would prefer not to ship the lights back to USA. I have a V2 Al, SS and Ti and would like to just replace the driver unit with LED already installed.

  21. #21
    Banned Groundhog66's Avatar
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    Option 2 PLEASE

  22. #22
    Flashaholic XFlash's Avatar
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    Quote Originally Posted by Data View Post
    Kyle and Walter

    I want my V2 to work really well! No holds barred. If we are going to do this lets go all the way, no battery drain, new LED, new converter board. If bright to dim is what it takes to make it work properly, then go for it. It is a simple and elegant UI.

    Option 2 for me please.

    I would prefer you find a service where we can just return the driver and you replace it with a V3 driver and new LED. We can insert the new driver and retaining clip ourselves. If the drivers get lost in the mail it will not be a big deal. My stainless V2 is beautiful and I do not want to ship it anywhere. Shipping the lights around the US makes me nervous let alone over seas.

    I am super happy your offer is for a driver that uses a primary battery and runs the light at 700mA. I always wanted that as I do not prefer to use a rechargeable in your light my self.

    Do not worry about the optic, the old one will work good enough.

    This is a big undertaking you are considering and it will cost you many weeks of work. I think it is very kind of you to suggest it. Count me in 100%.


    Cheers
    Dave

    I agree wholeheartedly with the quote. I have a V1 and V2. The V1 has a crapie LED this would be wonderfull for it, but for sure with V2.
    Thanks for maybe offering this.
    Tim - XFlash

  23. #23
    Enlightened
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    I too would be interested in one of the upgrades. Keep us posted.

  24. #24
    Flashaholic* AndyTiedye's Avatar
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    Quote Originally Posted by LumenCraft1 View Post
    The optic will not be replaced because in our tests we show that it actually works much better with the P4 than it did with the Luxeons. The V1 and V2 had sort of a square beam but the P4 makes it a perfect circular beam with lots of throw.

    -Kyle
    I have an aluminum V2 that was upgraded to a Seoul P4 and I agree that the
    beam is much better than on the original Luxeon that I have on my other V2.

  25. #25
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    I would be interested in opion 2.

    Torben.

  26. #26
    Flashaholic* cqbdude's Avatar
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    Ill be interested in either option.....so please count me in..

  27. #27

    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    When you mention that, " Lastly with the upgrade we will be installing a retainer that will keep the module from coming out when the battery is removed. "
    This remind me another minor issue of the V2. When I insert the battery, sometimes the positive outside edge of the battery get stuck slidely sideway because it caught the edge of the inside rim of the body center (the cone, if you will), thus the positive terminal did not touch the contact and also the tailcap won't go in. If the retainer mentioned can extend beyond the cone's lip and taper sharply, the battery will go in straight every time.
    Option 2 for me for 2 or 3 gatlight.

  28. #28
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    mobile1... per your PM to me, you were not going to start any more threads on CPF proper after this one. You said that you would "move to the CPFMP" when that light is delivered. Your caveat that you be provided with the rights to open a Lumencraft Sub forum was not agreed to by me and quite honestly, just like every other manufacturer on CPF, you do not get to set the terms by which you participate in these forums and you do not get to disregard the policies of these forums if you do not like them.

    As a courtesy, I gave your username at the MarketPlace posting privileges in the Manufacturer's Corner until the end of August... free of charge... so you could wrap up your sales and interest threads here on CPF and start new ones at the MarketPlace.

    Please start a new thread now in the Manufacturer's Corner to continue this thread there. Once you have started that thread, you can post a link to it here in this thread and I will close this thread.

    Thank you for your cooperation in this matter.

  29. #29
    Modulated Moderator Radio's Avatar
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    Option TWO for me!!!!!!
    Carrying a firearm for self-defense gives you great power. Society expects great responsibility from those with great power.

  30. #30
    Flashaholic* starfiretoo's Avatar
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    Default Re: GATLIGHT V2 UPGRADE - INTEREST THREAD

    My 2 gatlights have been moddified with Seoul emitters. How much would it cost to go with option 1 and 2?

    Thank you for offering your V2 upgrade.

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