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Thread: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

  1. #1
    *Flashaholic* wquiles's Avatar
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    Default Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    I started planning for this build almost 3 months ago, back on March 13 of 2009, when Javier proposed a bartering deal of additional hosts in exchange for a super bright light for diving:
    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...7&postcount=28

    Since his offer was very generous, I decided to build two lights instead of one:
    - a high power reflectored solution (the one shown in this post)
    - a neutral white wide angle (floody) light

    The high power one was the more difficult, so I decided to do that one first. Most/all of the lessons learned with that one, should make it easier to do the flood light, since fitting the reflector is fairly time consuming.

    I am not calling this a DIY since it was a little bit more involved that prior builds:
    - single P7
    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...d.php?t=222258
    - single MC-E:
    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...d.php?t=226575


    This particular build has been the longest build I have tried so far, and has taken me over two months to both order and get parts, some of which where not yet available (IMR cells), plus some pending work/proijects on my own “shop”. The build was very interesting since there were several questions to consider, including what LED configuration, what reflector to use, what power source, regulated or direct drive (and the efficiency of each solution), etc..

    Although I had all of the ideas and steps mentally in my head before I started, I don't pre-plan every single step: I would work on one part, then think how I want to do the next one, sometimes trying something and then abandoning it for something else (here you see only the steps that worked out, otherwise it would have been even more photos for the rejects!).

    For this solution, I had seen a reflector that I felt would work great, so I started by ordering a triple reflector from Deal Extreme in Asia:



    Of course the reflector does not fit on the head (too wide), but it seemed to focus well with a couple of the LED's I tried, so I decided to try ordering some MC-E's to see how it could work. Since Javier said he wanted something really bright, I ordered "M" bin MC-E's, which of course meant waiting additional time as these came from Asia. I still had the challenge of the cells, and how to drive the MC-E's, since the AW LiIon cells have not been available for some time, and the IMR26500 cells were not quite available just yet. I though about using a single A123 cell (two can't fit length-wise in my initial idea), and I even bought an "F" size cell, but it was too wide for the body, so that was eliminated as an option.

    The challenge was that I want to deliver about 2.8-3Amps to each emiter, but I only have either 1x or 2x LiIon cells to work with. I wanted a higly efficient solution for the power source, and although I love the hipCC (and I will be building some current regulated Barbo lights using this driver in the fture), the hipCC is a buck driver maxed at 2.8A, so nothing was working out well to power the LED's at max.

    Nothing seem to work until I saw a post from forum member Techjunkie, who had tested 3x MCE's from two IMR cells, in a 6P/2S arrangement. He tested the DD (Direct Drive) solution, but even at this large current load, the IMR cells did not sag, so he had to add high power resistors in series (two 0.47 Ohm in parallel) to bring the current to a "reasonable" level, specially if the 3x MC-E were wired in 6P2S - nominal current was around 4.2 Amps, which is within reason, but still too high for a regulated driver at high efficiency levels. Thanks to his help I was able to move on with the project, and that is the actual configuration that I am using here, which starts at about 88% efficient at 4.5Amps, and gets more and more efficient as the batteries drain. Thanks much Techjunkie

    Once the IMR cells arrived from AW, I had all of the piece parts to work on the project, so for the last 2-3 weeks I have been "putting" together Javier's special light. I started by modifying the reflector so that it would fit on the head:





    The reflector is kind of deep, and once you put the emiters in place, the overall height would not allow the lens to fit. On top of that, to give me more room to wire the emiters in the required serial/parallel mode, I decided to use a star, which added 0.085” in height:



    Here is additional height by the emiter itself:



    Although I will for sure had to do some boring to take away some of the metal on the built-in heatsink in the head (more on that below), I decided to make the star a little bit thinner – the less metal taken from the head the better. To do that and not damage the wiring/soldering side of the star, I created a small “holder” for the star:



    and I used my lathe and sand paper on a granite surface to take about 0.015” from the star:







    Once I got the stars thinner, I tested the overall solution, which worked as I had hoped (emiters not sanded flat yet in these pictures):







    So I soldered the emiters:



    I also did grind away some of the edges since they need to be fairly close to each other, and I do not want to remove too much metal on the head close to edges:



    I got the two 0.47 Ohm resistors from Radio Shack:







    I used thermal epoxy on them, and soldered the two in parallel:





    I got about 0.21 Ohms (after taking in consideration the resistance of the probes themselves):



    I used epoxy and a metal cup to provide electrical connectivity – this side faces the inside of the tailcap:







    The other side gets a spring (I decided to make the spring part of the battery carrier for several reasons, including allowing the host to be used with other future battery/driver options):



    Here I am testing the overall height of the “battery” pack (still lacking the outer delrin sleeve) on my “gigantic” Starrett height gauge:





    For the positive side of the battery, I am making a new positive contact out of Al, which will be housed in a delrin spacer, to provide electrical isolation:











    I then drill and chamfer to get the electrical connection:



    This is how it looks like size-wise compared to both the IMR cell and the 18650 cell (I wanted to make sure the positive contact would work with various future/different cells):





    I then proceeded to work on the delrin spacer for the positive contact:











    I gave both surfaces some deep scratches so that the epoxy would have some “mechanical” strength to prevent rotation from pulling the two apart:



    I then got the positive wire connected – solder on both sides, very tight for a firm connection:



    I then epoxied the two pieces:





    I then started work on the delrin battery sleeve:











    For the power resistor, I made a shelf inside the battery carrier to limit its travel. Here is how it looks like:





    Here is now how the assembled battery pack looks like, next to the host:



    I then applied additional epoxy to the resistance module:





    and created a delrin ring that goes on the inside of the battery carrier to keep everything aligned while I epoxied the resistor module to the end of the battery pack - the whole goal was to make everything solid and 100% reliable, in case the light was hit/dropped/etc:









    Back to the reflector/emiter combo, I am once again checking how much I have to remove from the head:



    So I start work on the head:



    Since I have the original drawings for this host as Javier made available last year, I know how much metal and where not to cut, so this was as most as I felt comfortable cutting without weakening the head. However, as you can see, it is not quite enough to get the emiters to fit:



    So I set my mill to do some more cutting:







    and this is how it looks now:



    and the emiters now fit:



    and after a dry assembly, everything fits as I expected:



    Back to the emiters, I started the soldering for the pairs that will be in parallel and in series:





    I then drill and tapped one of the smaller existing holes, which will become my solid electrical negative contact:







    I used my Dremel tool to cut a small relief for the screw:





    and this is how it looks like (dry fit – no epoxy yet):



    I marked the back of the reflector to know where to apply the epoxy that will keep the reflector in place:



    and I use thermal epoxy to glue the emiters to the head, while using the actual reflector to center the emiters in place:






    and here is the head with the emiters perfectly centered:



    Back on the lathe, I cleaned up both ends of the tube, specially removing the anodizing on the tailcap side for a good electrical contact:





    Before seating the positive contact, I gave both surfaces some scratches to help the epoxy have a mechanical bond:



    The body itself centers and keeps the positive contact aligned – it is just a very light friction fit:



    Then use the battery pack to apply some pressure while the epoxy sets:





    this is how it looks like once everything is dry:



    Once set, I can proceed to wire the emiters:







    Here is the screw and negative contact wire:



    All wired up:



    And then, the test with the bench supply, first at about 100mA:





    then about 1Amp:





    about 2Amps:





    about 3Amps:





    about 4Amps:





    and finally 5Amps:





    Here is how the beam looks like against the wall – you can see the 3 emiter beams:



    and here is a blended to show how it would look like without reflectors – just a massive flood:



    here is the beamshot with the reflector in place – simply awesome!



    Here is the assembled light. I just need to add the water-sealing silicone to seal the head and main tube – everything else is complete:



    This completes the build. Beamshots below on post #2.
    Last edited by wquiles; 05-24-2009 at 07:36 PM. Reason: typos, photos, etc.
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  2. #2
    *Flashaholic* wquiles's Avatar
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Beamshots. FujiFilm S100FS. Manual exposure of 1.5Sec @ F2.8, lens on wide angle. Camera on a tripod.

    1) Surefire M6 - MN21 - Regulated LiIon battery pack, fully charged.
    2) My own P7 Barbo super Host - Direct Drive from 18650 LiIon cell, fully charged.
    3) New Super Barbo Light with 3x MC-E M-bin, Direct Driven from 2x IMR26500 cells, with 0.21Ohm resistance

    Group 1: Side of house next door
    Baseline picture - no flashlights:



    M6: (over exposed due to close distance)



    Barbo P7: (over exposed due to close distance)



    Barbo 3x MC-E: (over exposed due to close distance)




    Group 2: Side of other house next door
    Baseline picture - no flashlights:



    M6:



    Barbo P7:



    Barbo 3x MC-E:




    Group 3: Street looking into trees
    M6:



    Barbo P7:



    Barbo 3x MC-E:




    Group 4: Looking deep into the trees
    M6:



    Barbo P7:



    Barbo 3x MC-E:



    Comparison side-by-side. M6 on the left, 3xMC-E on the right




    Waking along a sidewalk:
    M6:



    Barbo 3x MC-E:




    Early comments:
    1) the 3x MC-E version is much brighter than the M6, but the M6 has more throw given its larger single reflector and single point of light.
    2) I am surprised as to how much useful wider the sidebeam is in the 3x MC-E.
    3) Up close, it is almost too painfully bright to use (in this regard the single P7 light is very nice).
    4) I only did quick ON/OFF to take pictures of all lights, but the 3x MC-E light was definitely getting warmer - good thing that this will be underwater during actual use

    Will
    Last edited by wquiles; 05-24-2009 at 07:35 PM.
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500


  4. #4
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    -Will-

    Sorry, I have retired from flashlight modding & I do not make custom flashlights. Thank you for your understanding.

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  5. #5
    Flashaholic* Barbarin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Wow!!!

    This one is a a warm tint, wide angle lght, dedicated to video and photo and asked Will to make to me.

    It looks I'm going to have a nice lighting system!!

    Javier
    Fiat lux

  6. #6
    *Flashaholic* wquiles's Avatar
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Quote Originally Posted by Barbarin View Post
    Wow!!!

    This one is a a warm tint, wide angle lght, dedicated to video and photo and asked Will to make to me.

    It looks I'm going to have a nice lighting system!!

    Javier
    The high output, natural tint, flood version will be the next one I will make for you. This one in particular uses a reflectored solution to give you a better range/throw, and used "M" bin MC-E emiters to give you the most output I could pack in this package. In other words, you will have to wait a little bit more for the wide-angle, photo-version of this host, but I think you will be pleased with the high-output longer-range version first

    Will
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    Flashaholic* olrac's Avatar
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500


  8. #8
    Flashaholic* Barbarin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Anyway it looks great!!!

    I have some other proposals for you..

    Javier
    Fiat lux

  9. #9

    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Looks good Will. I hate how the parallel Stars are designed. I would like then to have 2 contact points instead of 8! They should have 3 flavor of Star's

    Series
    Parallel
    2S2P

    Also Alcohol takes that Flux off easy.

    How are you wiring this up?? If you can fit 2 "C" size cells wouldn't a 2S2P be perfect?

    I re-flowed a bunch of MC-E's last week. It was my first experience with solder paste. It was cool watching the emitter center itself!

    Has it been 1-2 hours yet

    Mac
    Last edited by cmacclel; 05-23-2009 at 09:56 AM.
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  10. #10
    *Flashaholic* wquiles's Avatar
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Well, two hours was "my" plan, but my lovely wife had "other" plans for me this morning, so it was not until this afternoon that I was able to finish. Post #1 has been updated with a "few" photos - I hope you have broadband

    I will update post #2 with the obligatory outdoor night beamshots later tonight

    Will
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500


  12. #12

    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Wow will that beam looks great. Is that how it looks in person? I have one of those reflectors somewhere


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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Beautiful work as usual Will! I love seeing the mechanics of a build & especially the tools used for the build!
    -Will-

    Sorry, I have retired from flashlight modding & I do not make custom flashlights. Thank you for your understanding.

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    Flashaholic* Aircraft800's Avatar
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Will,

    Can you postpone delivery of this project till AFTER June 6th I believe that more outdoor testing and beamshots are necessary!

  15. #15
    *Flashaholic* wquiles's Avatar
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Post #2 updated with beamshots
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    *Flashaholic* wquiles's Avatar
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Quote Originally Posted by Barbarin View Post
    Anyway it looks great!!!

    I have some other proposals for you..
    I am all ears buddy



    Quote Originally Posted by cmacclel View Post
    Wow will that beam looks great. Is that how it looks in person? I have one of those reflectors somewhere
    Mac - I agree with you on the stars. It makes it hard to wire them

    The beam looks really that good in person, and as expected (given the 3 small reflectors), it has a wicked sidebeam



    Quote Originally Posted by Aircraft800 View Post
    Will,

    Can you postpone delivery of this project till AFTER June 6th I believe that more outdoor testing and beamshots are necessary!
    That will be up to Javier - it is "his" light - I am just the temporary keeper/custodian

    We just need to find a way for Javier to "loan" us the light for a little bit longer
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    Flashaholic* ledaholic's Avatar
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Quote Originally Posted by Aircraft800 View Post
    Will,

    Can you postpone delivery of this project till AFTER June 6th I believe that more outdoor testing and beamshots are necessary!
    +1

  18. #18

    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Man I feel like an idiot....I've been looking at the wiring and for the life of me cannot figure it out! Maybe I need to bust out a notepad!

    Mac
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  19. #19
    *Flashaholic* wquiles's Avatar
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Quote Originally Posted by cmacclel View Post
    Man I feel like an idiot....I've been looking at the wiring and for the life of me cannot figure it out! Maybe I need to bust out a notepad!

    Mac
    Mac - don't feel bad. I did like 3-4 wrong wiring diagrams in my notes before I got it right, and when soldering, I was constantly measuring and checking everything 2-3 times.

    Here is the electrical diagram:
    Positive Contact -> 6 emiters in parallel -> 6 emiters in parallel -> Negative Contact

    The trick is that those 6 emiters in parallel are made up from 4 from one star and 2 from another star. This is the part that makes it more confusing.
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  20. #20

    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Quote Originally Posted by wquiles View Post
    Mac - don't feel bad. I did like 3-4 wrong wiring diagrams in my notes before I got it right, and when soldering, I was constantly measuring and checking everything 2-3 times.

    Here is the electrical diagram:
    Positive Contact -> 6 emiters in parallel -> 6 emiters in parallel -> Negative Contact

    The trick is that those 6 emiters in parallel are made up from 4 from one star and 2 from another star. This is the part that makes it more confusing.

    Thanks for the explanation! though you did explain what you did in the beging posts...I must of missed it.

    What are you doing here? Endmill with a lathe?

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  21. #21
    *Flashaholic* wquiles's Avatar
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Quote Originally Posted by cmacclel View Post
    Thanks for the explanation! though you did explain what you did in the beging posts...I must of missed it.

    What are you doing here? Endmill with a lathe?

    (snip pic)
    Since there is a small hole through the head, I would normally use a boring bar to bore out the surface I needed to seat the stars. However, the boring bar I had was too large for the hole, so I used that center cutting mill to start a 1/2" wide hole, which the boring bar would then had no problem in expanding. I owe that trick to Brian ( Mirage_Man )
    Last edited by wquiles; 05-24-2009 at 05:53 AM.
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    Flashaholic* LED Zeppelin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Amazing work Will!

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Nice one Will- the output of that beast is actually just a little scary in the photos!!
    Kind Regards

    David

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    W-O-W.

    I have no words, Will.

    By the way, I'll send you some parts for you to make more things... For example our new P7/MCE reflectors get 135% higher readings on spot and 35% better "overall" We will talk by phone this week.

    Stay tunned. I'm sure Will is going to make the best LED thrower in the world really soon.

    Javier
    Fiat lux

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Quote Originally Posted by darkzero View Post
    I love seeing the mechanics of a build & especially the tools used for the build!
    +1, the documentation of your projects and the way they're shared with the rest of us is a real treat.

  26. #26

    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    OMG!


    everything about this build is amazing. cant wait to see the warm white version as well.

  27. #27
    Thread Killer Illum's Avatar
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500



    but geezez.. next time post a warning sign on the pics..Firefox hanged like explorers going to crash and I'm here panicking and trying to figure out what was the issue.

  28. #28
    *Flashaholic* wquiles's Avatar
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Thank you guys - it was a fun project to do


    Quote Originally Posted by Illum View Post


    but geezez.. next time post a warning sign on the pics..Firefox hanged like explorers going to crash and I'm here panicking and trying to figure out what was the issue.
    Sorry about that mate. I tried it on Mozilla Firefox (Ubuntu Linux) and on IE 6.0 (Windows XP) without problems, so I was not expecting browser problems
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  29. #29
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    I'm not worthy!!!

    My firefox loaded all pics ok.
    Thanks for those progress pics.
    WOW........

  30. #30
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    Default Re: Super Barbo Diving Light for Javier in Spain with 3xMC-E and 2xIMR26500

    Fantastic thread. A master-class in how to do it. And what a tremendous result!
    Resistance is futile...

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