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Thread: protective coverings for flashlights?

  1. #1
    Flashaholic* sORe-EyEz's Avatar
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    Default protective coverings for flashlights?

    a spinoff topic from Fenix Flashlight = crappy (weak) aluminum
    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...d.php?t=229241

    should flashlights have disposeable/replaceable protective sleeves for the ends if not the whole light?
    please share your idea!!

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    pictures!!

    tailcap ends of Pelican M1 on the left with black clickie & M6 on the right with red clickie.


    SureFire E1L on the left & E2L on the right


    Side view to show the difference in thinkness. i had a several rings of that rubber cap throughout the smaller M1. the tailcap of the M1 is not visible from the side view!!


    Surefire E1L on the top & E2L below. pity it does not sit completely flushed, abit of the tailcap is still visible...


    this is a close-up of the rubber feet. the smaller 1 on the left with a hollow for protruding tailcap. a larger uncut feet on the right. the smallest will fit SureFire E-series lights snugly, the next size up will fit all 1-inch tubes snugly. there are at least another 2 larger sizes available.
    Last edited by sORe-EyEz; 04-18-2009 at 07:57 AM. Reason: pics added

  2. #2
    Flashaholic* old4570's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    Quote Originally Posted by sORe-EyEz View Post
    a spinoff topic from Fenix Flashlight = crappy (weak) aluminum
    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...d.php?t=229241

    should flashlights have disposeable/replaceable protective sleeves for the ends if not the whole light?
    please share your idea!!

    **i will post a pic of one i made for tailstanding soon!
    Id like to see a lens cover ...

  3. #3
    Flashaholic* Zatoichi's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    I don't want anything covering the metal, but I'd love to see a protective lens cap that doubles as a diffuser. It shouldn't add much to the price.
    "The profoundly wise do not declaim against superficial knowledge in others, as much as the profoundly ignorant."

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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    Good idea for a thread. It would be useful to have "bumpers" for some lights to prevent unnecessary damage.

    They would certainly be useful for some large lights, which because of their weight are perhaps more in need of impact protection than smaller lights are. Polarion were going to produce some for their PH-40, but so far they haven't materialised.

    One problem would be with heat - if you cover a bezel with rubber (an insulator) there is going to be additional heat build-up, which could cause worse problems than just a few dings.

    There is a good partial solution for 1-inch diameter lights - the Surefire F04 diffuser. I keep an F04 on my Novatac 120P most of the time. The F04 costs $14.

    If you don't want the diffuser but do like the idea of the rubber protection, a solution for Novatac/RA/other 1"-dia lights would be to buy 2x F05 or F06 color filters ($9 each) and take out the actual filter lenses. That would give you a rubber bumper for each end.
    Resistance is futile...

  5. #5

    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    Mag makes an anti-roll/filter kit that uses an hexagonal (hence anti-roll) rubber sleeve to hold the filters; I've seen that recommended for use (without a filter) to protect Mags.

    The whole rubber-bumper thing's not necessarily a bad idea, but one issue some rubber bumpers might have is poor pocketability; if the rubber is too grippy, it'll grab your pocket lining and not go in and out freely. When I was a kid, I had a 2C light that had black rubber all over, and it suffered this problem a lot. If a less grippy rubber is used, and care is taken with the shaping, it shouldn't really be an issue.

    EDIT: Oh, it's hexagonal, not octagonal. You can see some here.
    Last edited by Benson; 04-18-2009 at 05:22 AM.

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    *Flashaholic* Marduke's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    I believe SS bezels or low profile "sacrificial" crenulations are useful to protect the more delicate components.

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    Flashaholic* sORe-EyEz's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    yes i realise heat will be an issue for most lights that are above a certain lumens. unfortunately there always a trade-off. SureFire E2L (single stage) does very well with almost no heat build-up for extended use over an hour.

    i would love to buy heat resistant silicone used for kitchen work. i've only seen them in sheets, how do i fix them onto tubular lights that i could remove easily to replace when its badly worn out? cable ties are not ideal either....
    Last edited by sORe-EyEz; 04-18-2009 at 08:13 AM.

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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    You could cut a piece of rubber hose (which comes in all different sizes), like heater hose for a car, for end caps, and it should affect heat dissapation too much since the conduction to the middle of the light should be pretty good.

    That's similar to what's on that Brinkmann TufMax inspection light with rubber on the end, which protects against a fall. (BTW -- I cut the hole bigger on the lens part, on that flashlight, and got more light and less of the dark shadow in the beam.) The rubber ends also make it easier to grab and hold the light. It's actually pretty good design and functionallity for such a cheap light.

    Anything beyond that would seem to defeat the idea of having a good finish on a light, and wouldn't work well if heat was a consideration.


    ** Always have safe flashlighting -- use a condom **

    (That's what came, unbidden, into my mind when I read the title of the thread.)

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    Flashaholic* sORe-EyEz's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    Quote Originally Posted by old4570 View Post
    Id like to see a lens cover ...
    Quote Originally Posted by Zatoichi View Post
    I don't want anything covering the metal, but I'd love to see a protective lens cap that doubles as a diffuser. It shouldn't add much to the price.
    a lense (tinted or not) could be cut & placed inside the rubber feet (last pic in my 1st post).


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    Flashaholic* Zatoichi's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    Quote Originally Posted by sORe-EyEz View Post
    a lense (tinted or not) could be cut & placed inside the rubber feet (last pic in my 1st post).

    Yes that would work. What I'm getting at though is, in addition to companies like Fenix providing lanyard, spare button cover and o-rings with a light, it surely wouldn't cost much more to include a simple, semi-transparent lens cap. Something like you get with a camera lens.
    "The profoundly wise do not declaim against superficial knowledge in others, as much as the profoundly ignorant."

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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    Quote Originally Posted by Zatoichi View Post
    Yes that would work. What I'm getting at though is, in addition to companies like Fenix providing lanyard, spare button cover and o-rings with a light, it surely wouldn't cost much more to include a simple, semi-transparent lens cap. Something like you get with a camera lens.
    Do not underestimate cost saving measures by companies. Automobiles have been produced knowingly with life threatening flaws that could have been prevented at the additional cost of only $1 US or so per car.

    Adding a lens cover could easily drive up the cost of a light by $5-10. On the other hand, selling them as an accessory creates a new market. An after market cover could however cost as much or more than that.

    Remember that we can learn to look for home made solutions as well. Will a soft drink bottle cap work? How about the cap from a medicine bottle? Etc. Pop it off when you need it and if you lose it, who cares? Caps and containers are also usable as diffusers. Just a thought. There is of course the expectation that switches and whatnot are going to experience normal wear & tear.
    "Show them a light, and they'll follow it anywhere..."

  12. #12

    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    I don't mean to be off topic but this reminds me of Rubber Baby Buggy Bumpers from Tom Slick.

    Now back on topic. If there were protective cases made it would then be similar to phone cases. There would be psychedlic cases, pink cases, purple cases with diamond studs, brass cases, silver cases, bling cases. It would be... a teenage video nightmare.

    All we'd need is some rapper to come out with his "bling" flashlight at a concert and it would be all over.... or just the beginning, depending on how you look at it.

    Diamond Encrusted surefire anyone?
    Last edited by Liquidspaceman; 04-18-2009 at 11:10 AM.

  13. #13
    Flashaholic* Zatoichi's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    Quote Originally Posted by chmsam View Post
    Remember that we can learn to look for home made solutions as well. Will a soft drink bottle cap work? How about the cap from a medicine bottle? Etc.
    They'll all work. I'm only talking about something of the same quality as a film cap container though, which I can't see costing much. What they get out of it is adding to the advertising "comes with lens protector and diffuser". I've yet to find things around the house I can use for my lights. That probably means buying things I don't need so I can use the lids from them.

    I realise it's not that big a deal, and most people can find something to improvise with after a good look around, but even really cheap Chinese binoculars and telescopes etc. come with lens caps, so it doesn't seem much to ask.
    "The profoundly wise do not declaim against superficial knowledge in others, as much as the profoundly ignorant."

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    Flashaholic* sORe-EyEz's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    my personal opinion that such an accessory should be sold seperately if it was produced. since people who use them would have them periodically replaced due to wear & tear anyway.

    & for those who prefer less weight & add-on to their light they are not made to pay for an additional cost.

    for lights that have the tendency for rapid heat build-up, i wonder if companies would have an intergrated design along the tubes (for tubular lights) with protruding fins like a heatsink? if a fanciful light like Gatlight can be designed & made this should not be too difficult?

    till then let's all share ideas on cheap do-it-ourselve ideas that ideally wallet friendly & not too difficult to improvise for everyone & anywhere.
    pictures will be nice, links of products too!

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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    It should be cheap to make a plastic cap or covering which would be virtually indestructible by anything less than a bolt cutter -- just make it of the same plastic Maglite uses for its blister package (it took two weeks for the slash on my finger from opening one of those to scab over.)

    If you want to make your own filters, BTW, do a web search on 'lighting gels' and you will find sheets, rolls, some sample books, etc. of filter material for stage lighting -- often made for high heat application. Not pushing for these particular ones, but just as an example look at http://www.stagespot.com/product/GEL...0Swatch%20Book for a swatch book for under $4.

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    Flashaholic* R@ndom's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    Mhm there's this stuff I put on my phone called invisibleshield. It's a really tough flexible polyuthrane film thats multible drops to concrete hasn't scratched it so far. It has a nice orange peel pattern that's quite grippy but still pocket friendly. And the best thing is condoms made of the same material is advertised as heat conductive! It'll only work on smooth surfaces though.

    Then again we could get all lights to be made from ti or ss. Perfection is a few sheets of sandpaper away!

    If a rapper does the flashlight bling thing. You better get some shares in lummi(once that's possible).
    Last edited by R@ndom; 04-18-2009 at 06:24 PM.

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    Flashaholic* sORe-EyEz's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    to bluepilgrim,
    i know of such gel filters that come in sheets but they will still nedd another rigid heat resistant back to stay in place when fitted to a rubber or heat resistent cap like the SureFire F4 diffuser cap.

    personally, i find plastic filters from Cokin very easy to work with. the P(rofession) sized 1s can make about 5-6 replacement windows for my Pelican M6.

    to R@dom,
    that invisibleshield is very interesting, i think a video of a flashlight being dragged on a sandy road over a long distant would be a good guage too!

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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    The Cokins look like nice material, but what I see on the web is considerably more expensive than the gels (I'd too much so for just playing around), and the swatch book has a large range of colors, is good for experimenting. If you find a color you like then you could get a Cokin or similar. I expect I could manage to find a way use the gels too, perhaps with backing or sandwich sheets.

    The Roscolar samples I have are not rigid, but but substantial -- about .007". Some of the other samples are thinner. I don't that listed in their catalog now -- maybe they don't make it anymore. They list the polycarbonate as 3 to 5 mils thick, with a softening and melting point at 160C and 220C. (Tech info at http://www.rosco.com/includes/techno...o_ROSCOLUX.pdf ) I see Rosco also makes 5 mil "dichrofilm" filters, but only 11 standard colors. http://www.rosco.com/us/filters/dichrofilm.asp It looks like fun stuff for experimenting -- I've had fun playing with the swatches I have.

    There are other makers, of course -- http://www.leefilters.com/ has both lighting and camera filters, including glass, and I saw a swatch book for lighting gels for $5 at http://www.filmtools.com/rosliggel.html

  19. #19
    *Flashaholic* Sgt. LED's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    You guys might do even better if you check out Apollo's offerings.

  20. #20
    Flashaholic* sORe-EyEz's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    got a link?

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    LEE filters costs way more than Cokin...

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  22. #22
    Flashaholic* Zeruel's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    Inspired by this thread, I found some film canisters and trimmed off some height to fit my E2DL. Works as diffuser and lens cap although not the prettiest solution.
    It's also good for dumping my light into the bag. Not so much protecting the bezel, but protecting my bag's contents from the crenelated bezel.




  23. #23
    *Flashaholic* Sgt. LED's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    Quote Originally Posted by csshih View Post
    hehe.. sgt and I have a link for you
    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...d.php?t=227403
    Thanks man! I went looking for it and got distracted by a diamond dragon!

    Zeruel, I like it. Didn't cost anything and it works for you.

  24. #24
    Flashaholic* sORe-EyEz's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    hi Zeruel,

    your idea is very good, it doesn't cost too much. but how come in the 1st picture there's 2 film canisters of different height? are they 2 different types of film?

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    Flashaholic* csshih's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    yea, I saw that... checked to make sure your weren't posting that link before I went to find it..

    darn you and your expensive lights :P

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    Flashaholic* Zeruel's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    Quote Originally Posted by sORe-EyEz View Post
    hi Zeruel,

    your idea is very good, it doesn't cost too much. but how come in the 1st picture there's 2 film canisters of different height? are they 2 different types of film?
    Oh, that's to show the trimmed off height. The one on the right is the original canister height.

  27. #27
    Flashaholic* sORe-EyEz's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    Quote Originally Posted by Zeruel View Post
    Oh, that's to show the trimmed off height. The one on the right is the original canister height.
    oic, but if the height was reduced, does the cap still fit nice & securely?

    *i should drop by my neighbourhood film developing shop to ask for some, film canisters are getting rare in this digital era...

  28. #28
    Flashaholic* Zeruel's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    Quote Originally Posted by sORe-EyEz View Post
    oic, but if the height was reduced, does the cap still fit nice & securely?

    *i should drop by my neighbourhood film developing shop to ask for some, film canisters are getting rare in this digital era...
    Yes it does. I only trimmed off the inner diameter and left the lip alone. Had to be careful to cut it slightly smaller than the diameter of the head, so that it's firmly in place after inserted in.

    Good luck in getting film canisters these days. I had to beg, borrow and steal. You best bet is to get them from Lomo enthusiasts.

  29. #29
    Flashaholic ghostguy6's Avatar
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    Quote Originally Posted by Benson View Post
    Mag makes an anti-roll/filter kit that uses an hexagonal (hence anti-roll) rubber sleeve to hold the filters; I've seen that recommended for use (without a filter) to protect Mags.

    EDIT: Oh, it's hexagonal, not octagonal. You can see some here.
    The 2 AA version will also fit onto a Surefire E series bezel as well.
    pelican (2)M6 2330, PM6 3330, Stealthlite 2410, (3) 2 AA Mitylite 2340, (2) 2 AAA mitylite 1900, M8 8030, Surefire 6p BOG Q5, 6pd, G2LD, E2E chrome, E2DL Inova X1 gen 2, X1 UV, X0, T2, Petzel tikka plus, Streamlight Strion

  30. #30
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    Default Re: protective coverings for flashlights?

    I keep my Streamlight scorpion in a plastic baggy to keep the rubber grip clean.
    All you need is Maglite.

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