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Thread: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

  1. #1
    Enlightened skunknuts79's Avatar
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    Default Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    Hey everyone,



    So, yeah. I really like my orange Tri-EDC from the first full run, but I'm having some issues:



    Mostly, I have noticed more than occasional flickering that does not seem dependent on battery state. When the flickering is occurring on the high setting, if I listen closely (metaphorically and physically to my ear), it literally sounds like air is escaping. The sound corresponds to the flicker. I am not mental, I swear. Sometimes the sound stops, at which point the light stops acting up!



    I know this has been discussed before, and may be due to the relative intricacies of our respective auditory systems, but it really does seem like the whine on medium is rather pronounced on my unit.



    I have babied my light, never dropped it. I only have used 18350s, maybe 4-6 full discharges worth of runtime total.



    Alright, what do you guys think??? Thanks for reading.....



    Best,

    Jason

  2. #2
    Flashaholic* mvyrmnd's Avatar
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    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    Incidentally, replying to this topic was the last thing I did before CPF went down. Mac had posted about a possible grounding issue, or switch problem.

    I have exactly the same issue, with occasional flickering in high, and severe flickering and induction noise in medium.

    I haven't mentioned it to Mac, since I've been quite rough on mine, and didn't think any warranty would still apply.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    I often but not always hear a whining sound from my Tri-EDC in medium mode; haven't noticed it in low or high mode.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    Depending on what frequency your ears are partial to you may or may not hear the driver on the Luc-RC Board. The noise is normal as for flickering that is not. I have told anyone if they had a flickering issue to please return the light so that I can see what the problem is. I still have not received any

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  5. #5
    Flashaholic* mvyrmnd's Avatar
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    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    I'll send mine in. But be warned, it's not pretty. I ended up using a polishing wheel to strip off what was left of the cerakote after spending 3 months in my pocket. Now it's bare, it's starting to rough up a bit.

    Just to point it out: it was flickering before I spent 2 hours rubbing it with a bench grinder...

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    Mine has the exact same symptoms described. There is a distinct difference between the familiar sound made by (I think) the mosfets, and the sound Jason is describes as air escaping and my light makes both. I'm not concerned with the mosfet whine, only the 'sizzling' sound usually heard on high and especially when the light is flickering. Anyways, to be honest the light is pretty much always on me, and I haven't been able to commit to sending it in, but I'd like to get it working right so I will. I've used both 18350's and 16340's.

  7. #7
    Flashaholic* mvyrmnd's Avatar
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    Default

    I've determined that the problem lies with the switch. Last night it wouldn't turn on at all. After bumping the tail off the palm of my hand, it came on.

    I'm on holiday at the moment, but it'll be in the mail to Mac next week.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    What battery have you folks been using? I had been using the Ultrafire 18350 cell and had very audible sound from the driver in medium mode and occasionally had to loosen the battery tube a quarter turn to get the light to turn on at all. Today I tried for the first time an AW IMR 16340 and the sound has has all but disappeard and no problems (so far) with the light turning on. Has anyone else tried both batteries?

  9. #9
    Flashaholic* mvyrmnd's Avatar
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    I have a 16340 IMR at home. I'll try it when I'm home again. If it fixes the issue, I'll be a bit cranky, since I bought the light specifically because it used 18350's. I might have to get a pair of AW's cells in the try those too.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    In follow-up to my post from yesterday, I used my Tri-EDC a lot last night at work, powered with an AW IMR 16340. It is working a whole lot better with the IMR cell than it did with the Ultrafire. The sound from the driver is all but gone, I have to put the light against my ear to hear it now. I'm also no longer having any issues with the light turning on. I have no idea why the light works better with the IMR cell but I'm just thankful and relieved that it does. Has anyone else here tried and IMR cell?

  11. #11
    Flashaholic* srfreddy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    Maybe its the poor quality of the cell thats causing the driver to have difficulty?

  12. #12

    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    Quote Originally Posted by srfreddy View Post
    Maybe its the poor quality of the cell thats causing the driver to have difficulty?
    It makes no sense to me that it could be the battery. I have tested 20 of the Ultrafire cells and they have all tested much better with higher voltages throughout the discharge graph with almost double the runtime.

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  13. #13

    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    Be nice to dispel some of this uncertainty. I'll send a new 18350 to Rich if he agrees to send his original 18350 for testing. All we need is someone willing to check it out.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    Quote Originally Posted by ElectronGuru View Post
    Be nice to dispel some of this uncertainty. I'll send a new 18350 to Rich if he agrees to send his original 18350 for testing. All we need is someone willing to check it out.
    Sure, I can do that. Just PM your address to me.

  15. #15
    Flashaholic* mvyrmnd's Avatar
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    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    My 16340 doesn't even make contact with the head. The spring's too short. I have 8 18350's all of them are as bad as each other. any slight knock to the light causes it to start flickering, or turn off altogether. It'll be in the mail to Mac this week. Mac, I'll PM you soon.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    It's not the battery -- I can repro the problem on 2 different 18350's and 4 different 16340's. I will send mine in soon.. promise, but like I said before it's hard to part with even if it acts up...

    Scott

  17. #17
    Flashaholic* KenAnderson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    Mine was flickering and I tried a number of fixes with no improvement. Then I tried a set of needle nose to screw the heat sync in tighter. That did it. It's perfect now. Pretty simple fix.
    HDS EDC 60 Ultimate, Mac's Tri-EDC

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    Quote Originally Posted by KenAnderson View Post
    Then I tried a set of needle nose to screw the heat sync in tighter. That did it. It's perfect now. Pretty simple fix.
    Ken, you're the man. I tried the same thing on mine (it turned a little less than an 1/8th of a turn) and so far it's behaved perfectly. I'll give it a couple more days to confirm, but I'm pretty confident that was it...

  19. #19
    Flashaholic* mvyrmnd's Avatar
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    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    I went to try this trick about an hour ago. I opened the light, after it only sitting for 2 days in a drawer, to discover the 18350 in it had vented. The smell was terrible!

    The switch now looks slightly burned.

    I tried to tighten the light engine, but it was tightly done up. I removed it and cleaned it up to get all of the battery guts off of it and reassembled it. After testing for dead shorts, i tried it with a new battery, but it flickers so badly now it won't even hold a mode.

    I have to say, with all of the cerakote issues, and now this, I'm very disappointed in this light.

    I didn't get to the post office last week, but it'll be on it's way to Mac tomorrow.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    So let me gets this straight.

    1) You mistakenly put your light into your pocket with your I-phone and after 10 minutes of the metal I-Phone band rubbing on the corner of the light removes some of the cerakote.

    2)I offer to recoat your light for free

    3)You complain about your light flickering. I told you to send it back and I would take care of it *MONTHS* ago.

    4)A battery vents in your light and now your "very disappointed in this light"

    Then you post

    Quote Originally Posted by mvyrmnd View Post
    Incidentally, replying to this topic was the last thing I did before CPF went down. Mac had posted about a possible grounding issue, or switch problem.

    I have exactly the same issue, with occasional flickering in high, and severe flickering and induction noise in medium.

    I haven't mentioned it to Mac, since I've been quite rough on mine, and didn't think any warranty would still apply.


    Send it back I'll fix it, re-finish it, then you can sell it if you choose to.

    Mac
    Last edited by cmacclel; 03-29-2011 at 07:41 AM.
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  21. #21

    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    Hell.. I'll buy it after its re-furbed by Mac if you wanna make a deal MVYRMND.. Let me know cuz i've been looking for one of these gems.

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    I've run my Tri through three full 18350 batteries now since fixing, with zero issues. To recap, I had the following specific problems (all of which are exactly what the OP stated):
    1. Flickering (unrelated to battery charge state)
    2. Usually a 'hissing' sound that corresponded to the flickering (*not* mosfet whine -- that also exists in med/low but is expected/normal)
    3. Sometimes it wouldn't turn on (was temporarily relieved by unscrewing the head slightly then screwing it back in)

    All of these issues are gone completely after tightening the heatsink per suggestion in post #17

    Mac's lights, IMO, are the best made, most practical EDC lights available -- especially for those of us that want high lumens in a small package. Mvyrmnd, I'm sorry you've had bad luck with yours, but I can all but assure you that your case is the exception, not the rule. I have 4 of Mac's lights and they all (now) work perfectly. This Al Tri that I've carried (and used) every day since I got it has been dropped on smooth concrete twice with no adverse affects (note problems listed above predated the first drop). I'm not even close to being as experienced as many CPFers with high end EDC lights but I've had at least a dozen now (Mcgizmos, Arcs, Download PR's, etc.), and this one beats them all from the perspective of usability.

    - Scott

  23. #23
    Flashaholic* mvyrmnd's Avatar
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    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    Quote Originally Posted by cmacclel View Post
    So let me gets this straight.

    1) You mistakenly put your light into your pocket with your I-phone and after 10 minutes of the metal I-Phone band rubbing on the corner of the light removes some of the cerakote.

    2)I offer to recoat your light for free

    3)You complain about your light flickering. I told you to send it back and I would take care of it *MONTHS* ago.

    4)A battery vents in your light and now your "very disappointed in this light"

    Then you post





    Send it back I'll fix it, re-finish it, then you can sell it if you choose to.

    Mac
    Hey, I'm allowed to feel disappointed!

    There was no mistake about putting it in my pocket with my iPhone. It was either that or my keys, and I'm sure that would have been worse.

    I appreciate your offer to recoat the light, but we'd have been right back at square one as soon as I put it back in my pocket. I bought this to be an EDC, not to sit on a shelf. That's why I used a polishing wheel to strip off the rest of the cerakote. I was willing to throw away the extra money that I paid for the cerakoting.

    I was in the same boat as smack2000, I was using the light daily, and to send it away for 3-4 weeks (remember I'm posting it to you from Australia) meant I had to find another EDC first. I really do use it every day.

    At first, the flickering was only minor. I could ignore it. It's only in the last 2 weeks that it's gotten this bad. Now I believe the switch has failed altogether.

    I'm not sure why the battery vented. I could have been a bad cell. It could have been something to do with the switch. I don't know.



    I have no intention to sell the light. I love it dearly. I just feel that there hasn't been much time when there hasn't been one problem or another.

    It'll be in the mail today.

  24. #24

    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    Just wanted to throw in my experience. I also use AW IMR 16340's and if I point the light (in medium) into my ear and obviously very close (even touching ), the whine is much more pronounced. Im pretty sure its normal and it doesnt bother me. My Kerberos Quad on medium is much much louder

  25. #25
    Flashaholic* mvyrmnd's Avatar
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    Default

    Wow, I'd forgotten this (now 15 month old) thread.

    Needless to say my Tri-EDC went back, got fixed and has been flawless since.

    I'm using AW 18350's instead of the Ultrafires and there's been no hassles.

  26. #26
    *Flashaholic* fyrstormer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Does my TRI-EDC have a gas leak?

    I had some flickering issues with my Tri-EDC at first. I replaced the switch and the problem went away.

    McClicky switches are a mass-produced item. Some of them just come off the line not working right. Swap it and move on.

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