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Thread: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

  1. #1
    Retired Administrator Norm's Avatar
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    Default Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    I received an MC-E module from DX and wanted to get the best thermal contact possible with the body of the light.

    I was thinking there must be a better solution than aluminium foil, I'd just finished a can of "pop", "soda" or where I come from "soft drink" so I cut the can into strips just wide enough to drop into my light 20mm and 750mm long, I then polished off the print with steel wool and rolled it up tight enough to push into the top of the torch where the P60 style drop in sits. By trimming the strip I was able to get a perfect fit for the drop in.

    I also found that by using a finger to rub the strip against the wall of the light in the opposite direction to the way it was rolled up, I was able to really smooth and tighten the strip.

    The strip remains in place when I remove the drop in and is a lot more permanent solution than foil. I guess for extra effectiveness you could apply some heat sinking compound to the strip before rolling it up.



  2. #2

    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    This seems like a good idea. Have you noticed the body of the light getting warmer quicker now that you've installed the extra layer of tin in the light?

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    Flashaholic* DHart's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Nice suggestion, Norm. Since aluminum foil conforms so nicely, one might find a combination of foil & pop-can even more useful in wicking away heat. I have a Dereelight MC-E lamp assembly in-bound from Hong Kong... I will definitely consider these options when fitting to my L2 host.

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    *Flashaholic* kramer5150's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    very nice... FWIW... I use the heavy gage Al foil. The stuff left over from the summer BBQ season. Fold it over once and cut it into a slender ~5/8" strip. I wrap the module in this so its snug. Its not as permanent as your coke can, but its definitely more durable than the thinner gage foil, while being just as flexible.

    I was thinking about getting some AA and filling in the ridges around the reflector... just pack the stuff in, and file it back down so its a clean cylinder.

    I wish they left the reflectors plain walled, with no ribs cut into the sides like DX:16694.
    Last edited by kramer5150; 05-05-2009 at 02:12 PM.
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    *Flashaholic* Sgt. LED's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Looks good to me! Slather some arctic silver 5 on it and you're good to go.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Thanks for giving me the idea.
    But isn't that pop-can edge sharp enough to make a cut or two at your finger? Did you sand the edge litttle bit or what?
    Last edited by seaside; 05-05-2009 at 01:38 PM.

  7. #7
    Retired Administrator Norm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Quote Originally Posted by supasizefries View Post
    This seems like a good idea. Have you noticed the body of the light getting warmer quicker now that you've installed the extra layer of tin in the light?
    Yes it does, my drop in is a nice snug fit now.

    Quote Originally Posted by seaside View Post
    Thanks for giving me the idea.
    But isn't that pop-can edge sharp enough to make a cut or two at your finger? Did you sand the edge litttle bit or what?
    The edges were left nice and smooth by the steel wool.
    Norm

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    Flashaholic* Zatoichi's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    That's a good idea. I've used pop cans to make washers for my katana tsubas. At the moment I'm using copper tape on my dropins, but I'm still wondering if the adhesive has any detrimental effect.
    "The profoundly wise do not declaim against superficial knowledge in others, as much as the profoundly ignorant."

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    Flashaholic* old4570's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Nice Idea

    Me , I used Al-foil + a bit of glue , to hold the foil in place and when the glue dries , its sort of part of the pill .

    If I had a lathe I would just turn up a copper sleeve or just make a new custom fit reflector .

    I have my MC-E in a Mini Solarforce L2 , and the Al-foil works a treat . Im just wondering how much of a gap is left where the wrap starts and ends , and how tight a fit you went for .

  10. #10
    Retired Administrator Norm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    The fit is not tight but is snug, some slight resistance when the module is inserted or removed. You can make the fit tighter by using a slightly longer strip, best to start off long and trim until your happy with the fit.
    Norm

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    Flashaholic* bigchelis's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    3M cooper tape works so much better than foil. I ordered my buddy a MC-E from DX. In a 6P it took around 5 minutes before it got pretty warm. After the cooper tape it gets warm within a minute. I think this is a good indication that the cooper tape is helping with heat. I did wrap it tight and applied force to fit it in the 6P.

    3M Electrical Tape #1181 HD 9046-04= This is cooper tape I used. It is very thick cooper with adhesive on the other side. I got it from him as a gift, but I have no idea where to purchase.

    Jose
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    Flashaholic* old4570's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    If its heatsinking correctly it should transfer heat away from the pill as quickly as possible , not hold it at the pill , thats bad .

    My little MC-E starts getting warm almost straight away , and after 3 minutes its hot , 5 minutes and the entire flashlight is hot ...

  13. #13
    Retired Administrator Norm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Quote Originally Posted by bigchelis View Post
    I ordered my buddy a MC-E from DX. In a 6P it took around 5 minutes before it got pretty warm. After the cooper tape it gets warm within a minute.
    Quote Originally Posted by old4570 View Post
    If its heatsinking correctly it should transfer heat away from the pill as quickly as possible , not hold it at the pill , thats bad .

    My little MC-E starts getting warm almost straight away , and after 3 minutes its hot , 5 minutes and the entire flashlight is hot ...
    I also have copper tape, available from any lead light glass supply.
    Norm

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    Flashaholic* bigchelis's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Quote Originally Posted by Norm View Post
    I also have copper tape, available from any lead light glass supply.
    Norm

    Norm,
    Do you notice which gets warmer within a minute the cooper tape vs. the soda can aluminum?

    Thanks,
    Jose
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    Retired Administrator Norm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Haven't tried the tape Jose, I just thought the coke can was a neater solution. I was unsure about how heat conductive the adhesive on the tape is, I know it will stand up to heat it is designed to be soldered but whether it conducts heat well I have no idea.
    Norm

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    Flashaholic* old4570's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Quote Originally Posted by Norm View Post
    Haven't tried the tape Jose, I just thought the coke can was a neater solution. I was unsure about how heat conductive the adhesive on the tape is, I know it will stand up to heat it is designed to be soldered but whether it conducts heat well I have no idea.
    Norm
    It may insulate more than it heatsinks .. If its designed to withstand heat .

  17. #17
    Flashaholic* bigchelis's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Quote Originally Posted by old4570 View Post
    It may insulate more than it heatsinks .. If its designed to withstand heat .

    I agree, but the MC-E drop-in now gets warm much much sooner. I am no expert on cooper or aluminum so I really have no idea why the bezel now gets warm sooner.

    Any ideas on why the cooper tape is making the bezel warm at around 1 minute on high?

    Thanks,
    Jose
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    *Flashaholic* kramer5150's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Quote Originally Posted by bigchelis View Post
    3M cooper tape works so much better than foil. I ordered my buddy a MC-E from DX. In a 6P it took around 5 minutes before it got pretty warm. After the cooper tape it gets warm within a minute. I think this is a good indication that the cooper tape is helping with heat. I did wrap it tight and applied force to fit it in the 6P.

    3M Electrical Tape #1181 HD 9046-04= This is cooper tape I used. It is very thick cooper with adhesive on the other side. I got it from him as a gift, but I have no idea where to purchase.

    Jose
    http://www.tedpella.com/TechNote_html/16072%20TN.pdf

    Copper tapes like this are typically used as an EMI shield, to create a cohesive Faraday cage around EMI/FRI sources. I have also seen it used as an ESD ground, so the adhesive used is most definitely electrically conductive.

    I have not seen it used as a thermal conductor, although it stands to reason that the Copper should conduct heat readily. The big question mark is the thermal conductive properties of the acrylic adhesive.

    3M has this product thats designed to be a thermal conductive tape. It also uses Acrylic adhesive in a peel&stick format.
    http://www9.3m.com/intl/kr/img/single/pdf/431.pdf
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  19. #19
    Retired Administrator Norm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Quote Originally Posted by bigchelis View Post
    .Any ideas on why the cooper tape is making the bezel warm at around 1 minute on high?

    Thanks,
    Jose
    That's a good thing Jose it means that the heat is being drawn away from the drop in and dissipated by the body of the light.
    Norm

  20. #20
    Flashaholic* old4570's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Quote Originally Posted by bigchelis View Post
    I agree, but the MC-E drop-in now gets warm much much sooner. I am no expert on cooper or aluminum so I really have no idea why the bezel now gets warm sooner.

    Any ideas on why the cooper tape is making the bezel warm at around 1 minute on high?

    Thanks,
    Jose
    No thats good , it means heatsinking is going on IE/ Heat is being transfered from the pill to the body , thats a good thing .

    You dont want to cook the LED or driver , this would happen if you had poor heatsinking , if the flashlight body gets to say 50deg C in 5 minutes , that could mean the LED is hot enough to cook with , and you really want to get rid of that heat before it gets terminal .

  21. #21
    Flashaholic OneBigDay's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    This is a really good tip. Thanks Norm for posting.

    I have a new Nailbender SST-50 dropin in a Solarforce L2m Stainless Steel host and have been a little concerned about how this will dissipate heat. I just tried the pop can wrap and now the head does get warmer noticeably faster (a good thing). I still may need an aluminum host in the long run but I wanted to give this one a go first. I had read some tips in other posts about copper tape but was hesitant because of the adhesive. The pop can wrap seems like a clean version of the same idea.

    Quote Originally Posted by old4570 View Post
    My little MC-E starts getting warm almost straight away , and after 3 minutes its hot , 5 minutes and the entire flashlight is hot ...
    You guys are brave putting MC-E dropins in a P60 host. I am new to this whole game but from what I've been reading here, this little guy gets HOT and it seems that's why we aren't seeing more small stock lights using this LED - too much heat. Having said that - I am very tempted to try a dropin like this myself

  22. #22

    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Hi Norm,

    Just wanted to drop a note that that your suggestion works great. I have two P60 hosts (Surefire C2 and Solarforce L2P) and I took a Pepsi can and cut it into two strips about 0.5 to 0.7 inches wide.

    It took a few cuts to get is to the right length to have the drop-in fit nice and snug. With the SST-50 and MCE drop-ins, respectively, the bodies get warmer much faster - especially the C2.

    Thanks for sharing.

  23. #23
    Retired Administrator Norm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Quote Originally Posted by kimck99 View Post
    With the SST-50 and MCE drop-ins, respectively, the bodies get warmer much faster - especially the C2.

    Thanks for sharing.
    Your welcome.
    Seems so much easier than playing around with foil, all my lights with drop ins use this method.
    Cheers Norm

  24. #24
    Flashaholic* Fusion_m8's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Thanks for the tip Norm. No soft drink cans though.... only VB, so I gotta make do!
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  25. #25
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    I used aluminum tape for my M60/6P. The tape I used is for holding ceramic backing in a weld joint. The aluminum realy got the head warm quick. I believe there was a 0.009" diffence between the module and head, and a soda can was too thick.

  26. #26
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    I use high-speed tape, since i work in aviation Much thicker than just normal al foil and comes with adhesive.

  27. #27
    Flashaholic* kosPap's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    personally I use alum food tray material...

    and got a question:
    does this worths it?
    http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.5092
    got some and it seems more tape than copper...

  28. #28
    Retired Administrator Norm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Quote Originally Posted by kosPap View Post
    personally I use alum food tray material...

    and got a question:
    does this worths it?
    http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.5092
    got some and it seems more tape than copper...
    This is a clone Kapton tape not copper tape.
    Norm

  29. #29
    *Flashaholic* Sgt. LED's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Yeah, don't.

  30. #30
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    Default Re: Improving heat sinking on P60 style drop ins.

    Has anyone contacted 3M to determine the conductive properties (if any) of the adhesive on the copper tape?
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