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View Poll Results: Please vote for your choice of body style

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  • Tube with threaded tail

    10 29.41%
  • Tube with integral tail & McClickie or FETtie

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Thread: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

  1. #1
    *Flashaholic* precisionworks's Avatar
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    Default The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    NOTE: The ROTOR split body concept is inspired by the efforts, design work & machining first conducted by Scott Thomson of TBSB (TranquilityBase). TBSB also designed & sold an 18650 non-split design that fit the E-series head with a C-series tail (circa 2005). Thank you Scott for your split body design that has withstood the test of time & will continue to be popular for many years to come.

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

    There's a lot of interest in custom parts that work with E-series components and a body seemed like the logical place to start. Also there is no question about how popular the 18650 power source is. So I started thinking about something that works well & looks good.

    Pablo (PEU) has done quite a bit of E-series development work, machined a number of Pineapple bodies, and has a deft touch in the SolidWorks 3D design program. I wanted to build an 18650 powered E-tube & it made sense for us to join forces.

    So we did

    Pablo has access to a full fledged CNC shop where he did his previous production runs. All of them sold out & this alone should speak to the superb quality of the CNC work. We talked about different designs & PEU convinced me that the best route is using a two part body. This avoids the problem inherent to a one piece E-tube bored for 18650 which is the thin O-ring area.

    We bounced a number of design ideas back and forth, and started the process using an original angled groove design Precisionworks developed for the V10R:









    This design feels good in the hand and offers a secure grip without sharp edges. PEU tought it would be nicer to have only 3 flats evenly spaced instead of 4



    PEU worked on that more and came up with this:



    Precisionworks asked for a modification of the beveled face like this:



    And another one to add a groove, but PEU added two equidistant grooves for a total of five, also modified the top side of the body so it’s more symmetrical:



    PEU then added a twist (pun intended ) to the flats, these rotations are not random, but the pattern is difficult to understand at first sight:



    PEU restyled the top part, these grooves hide the two parts seam, making it look like it is one solid piece:



    We discussed tritium slots in the head, but there isn’t enough metal depth to mill the slots:



    And we stopped here as both of us were happy about this milestone - a truly original design that is great looking and offers an excellent grip.

    PEU already machined a prototype and he has more renders, the next post will also be used for future updates on his side since he cannot edit this post.


    Now all we have to do is find out how much it will cost to make it.


    We hope you all like it.
    Last edited by precisionworks; 03-04-2012 at 05:37 PM.
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  2. #2
    Flashaholic* PEU's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    First of all, thanks Barry for the confidence

    Barry's post outlined most of the design process, let me post some more renders so you can fully understand the ROTOR shape:







    Yesterday I went to the shop with some e-series blanks I kept from the pineapple body run, I knew at the time they would be handy, many years later I proved myself right

    Cut two blanks and used only one side of each, using a manual lathe then I threaded both pieces, also added an oring groove for sealing purposes:








    The grooves at the top part were a feature of the pineapple bodies, since this is a prototype, I don't bothered in turning them out with the lathe, please ignore them.

    And here is the finished unit with an ultrafire 18650 battery:



    you can barely see the seam, with the design grooves it will be almost invisible:



    it shines!




    As Barry said, we hope you all like it, our plan is to make them in HA3 ALU, Bronze and 6AL4V Titanium.


    Pablo

  3. #3

    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    Very nice. Have you had a chance to work out the cost?
    During the day when I don't need a torch ... RC is my hobby http://rc.runryder.com/helicopter/gallery/47842/Always on the lookout for McGizmo/Kuku Titanium torches with Trits..

  4. #4
    Flashaholic* Obijuan Kenobe's Avatar
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    I will take minimum one...no, two in Ti.

    Super design idea and initiative.

    Please consider making a one piece tail with thread for a clicky.

    obi

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  5. #5
    *Flashaholic* precisionworks's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    Quote Originally Posted by mohanjude View Post
    Very nice. Have you had a chance to work out the cost?
    TYVM

    Argentina's Bicentenary Celebration was last week & it is a national holiday. Shops are closed until Monday, March 5. We should have pricing sometime during that week.

    Please consider making a one piece tail with thread for a clicky.
    +1

    My suggestion was to make a head, body, tail, one piece body with clicky, etc. PEU brought me back to reality & said "let's start with the body & try to gauge interest."

    I'd been thinking about a titanium 18650 tube for a long time. In an email to PEU I said:

    It is so tough to find a shop willing to run a small lot of custom Ti parts. I deal with half a dozen local shops, each of them top flight. One has a pair of newer Mazak lasers, one has an Omax waterjet, another runs a 3mx7m high def plasma & the other shop does wire EDM and ram EDM. Nobody wants to quote under 50 pieces.
    PEU mentioned the shop he uses & suggested I consider them ... at this point it was still I & not yet we. He checked titanium prices & sent a drawing of the E-series dimensions he'd used before. Sometime around this point and a dozen emails later we decided it would be beneficial to do this project together. He suggested that in addition to Ti-6-4 we also offer an aluminum HAIII version & a bronze model.

    As soon as we have pricing we'll be able to better determine what next to do.
    Last edited by precisionworks; 03-03-2012 at 03:41 AM.
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  6. #6
    *Flashaholic* precisionworks's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    Another designer/manufacturer contacted me this morning & asked if we'd contacted the original designer of the two-piece tube for E-series. I responded that we had not & did not in fact know who is responsible for the design. Some digging around the web indicates that TranquilityBase is the inventor & we very much want to get in contact with TB. Searching through seven archived pages of TB threads did not produce an email or a website address. If anyone has contact info for TB please post it here or email it to me.

    It is not our intention to knowingly or unknowingly duplicate someone's design or to disregard their intellectual property rights. At the very least that person deserves acknowledgement & credit for a design still used by a number of makers on CPF.
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  7. #7
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    I'd say lose the two-piece design and make it Z41 compatible.

  8. #8
    *Flashaholic* precisionworks's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    Quote Originally Posted by PCC View Post
    I'd say lose the two-piece design and make it Z41 compatible.
    One small step at a time

    There is a segment that wants to use the tail cap they feel is most suited to their purposes & the bare tube satisfies that market. Others will want an integral tail with McClickie or FETtie switch. To further complicate this some will want a slim tail & others will want a fat shrouded design with lots of trit slots. All these are possibilities but the bare tube lets us offer the lowest initial price.
    Last edited by precisionworks; 03-03-2012 at 03:13 PM.
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  9. #9
    Flashaholic* PEU's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    Quote Originally Posted by precisionworks View Post
    Argentina's Bicentenary Celebration was last week & it is a national holiday. Shops are closed until Monday, March 5. We should have pricing sometime during that week.
    We have too many holidays here (yes I said it ) this one was: bicentenary of the creation and first oath to our national flag.

    Blueprints are in the shop waiting for a quote. We will know more next week.


    Pablo

  10. #10

    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    "Searching through seven archived pages of TB threads did not produce an email or a website address. If anyone has contact info for TB please post it here or email it to me."

    You might just be able to PM him. He posted on 2/19 in the PF 17 get-together thread. Better yet, come to the get together. The date for PF 18 should be announced soon.

  11. #11
    Flashaholic* Bimmerboy's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    I like the looks of this thing a lot... quite reminiscent of either a Wankel, or even the cam of a regular ICE (hence, "The ROTOR" I suppose). Either way, it's very different.

    If I'm understanding the reason for the flats pattern... is it that no two flats are ever lined up in order to ensure grip no matter how the light is rotationally oriented in the hand?
    I'm an excellent driver. Of course I don't have my underwear... I'm definitely not wearing my underwear

  12. #12
    *Flashaholic* precisionworks's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    You might just be able to PM him. He posted on 2/19 in the PF 17 get-together thread.
    That's a great idea

    Better yet, come to the get together. The date for PF 18 should be announced soon.
    The Photon Festival has always sounded like lots of fun. How about slightly relocating it to the dead center of the USA ... Chicago. No particular reason except it's only 300 miles away
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    Quote Originally Posted by precisionworks View Post
    One small step at a time

    There is a segment that wants to use the tail cap they feel is most suited to their purposes & the bare tube satisfies that market. Others will want an integral tail with McClickie or FETtie switch. To further complicate this some will want a slim tail & others will want a fat shrouded design with lots of trit slots. All these are possibilities but the bare tube lets us offer the lowest initial price.
    My point is that, by going to a one-piece body, you side-step any legal issues that could possibly pop up with a two-piece design if TB has patented it. Also, by using titanium, you may be able to get away with front loading an 18650 without resorting to a two-piece body since titanium would be less prone to breaking compared to aluminum due to it being made really thin at the threads for the head.

  14. #14
    *Flashaholic* precisionworks's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    Quote Originally Posted by PCC View Post
    My point is that, by going to a one-piece body, you side-step any legal issues that could possibly pop up with a two-piece design if TB has patented it.
    From the research there's appears to be no patent on the split E-body. Patent or not we want to do the right thing for whomever developed the split body.

    Also, by using titanium, you may be able to get away with front loading an 18650 without resorting to a two-piece body since titanium would be less prone to breaking compared to aluminum due to it being made really thin at the threads for the head.
    I agree & I have a complete set of drawings that can be used to build an 18650 E-tube with a thin O-ring groove wall. I can't tell you how many aluminum Surefire E tubes I've bored for 18650 & no one has yet had one fail. Ti-6-4 is about twice as strong as aluminum & even less likely to have a problem. BUT when a person becomes a custom flashlight builder (as opposed to a modder) warranty becomes a consideration. The split tube, in any material, eliminates any potential for failure at the front of the tube.
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  15. #15
    *Flashaholic* precisionworks's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    please disregard
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  16. #16
    Flashaholic* Obijuan Kenobe's Avatar
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    Default

    I have something which might help.

    Steve Ku produced some E series bodies...they are also essentially one piece (battery cannot exit via the tail). They are very thin at the head end. I would prefer to avoid this large weakness. It is fine for what it is, but I suspect you are aiming for more.

    I would be happy to send this to you if you think it would help in any way.

    obi

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  17. #17
    *Flashaholic* precisionworks's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    Quote Originally Posted by Obijuan Kenobe View Post
    I have something which might help.

    Steve Ku produced some E series bodies...they are also essentially one piece (battery cannot exit via the tail). They are very thin at the head end. I would prefer to avoid this large weakness. It is fine for what it is, but I suspect you are aiming for more. I would be happy to send this to you if you think it would help in any way.
    Obi,

    I am touched by your generous offer. Not many members volunteer to ship away their prized light for any reason.

    At this time our design is not carved in stone (or aluminum, bronze, titanium) but it is very close to final form. There may be some changes depending on machining costs but PEU & I both feel the two piece tube is a bullet proof design. We will certainly let you know if we need to look at the kuku tube.
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    Flashaholic* archimedes's Avatar
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    Default

    Tried to send you a PM .... BTW, MirageMan has also produced a split-body design, although I don't really know much of the history of MM (or TB, for that matter).

    Anyway, just thought I'd mention that, on the chance you weren't already aware of it.
    IF 2 = 1 THEN 1 = 0

  19. #19
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    Very nice! Certainly interested in AL (HAIII) and probably Ti as well.

    Hate to say it, but the angles on the body would look GREAT anodized (Ti) - as I find the changing angles when you look at it really plays well with the colors. I guess what I'm saying is if I buy a Ti body it will be even more expensive, because I'll end up anodizing it.


  20. #20
    Flashaholic* PEU's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    Quote Originally Posted by nfetterly View Post
    Very nice! Certainly interested in AL (HAIII) and probably Ti as well.

    Hate to say it, but the angles on the body would look GREAT anodized (Ti) - as I find the changing angles when you look at it really plays well with the colors. I guess what I'm saying is if I buy a Ti body it will be even more expensive, because I'll end up anodizing it.
    All angles will have a radius, it may be invisible to the eye, but when you HA3 aluminum you need radiuses (radii?)

    What we need to know at this time is if there is interest, having more units done at the shop lowers the cost for all !


    Pablo

  21. #21
    *Flashaholic* precisionworks's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    Quote Originally Posted by archimedes View Post
    Tried to send you a PM .... BTW, MirageMan has also produced a split-body design, although I don't really know much of the history of MM (or TB, for that matter).
    Sorry about the PM archimedes, I disabled that featured quite a while ago. Please email through my website anytime you want. I'm familiar with some of the MM offerings but have never had a chance to examine one of his split tube models. We know that Rothrandir (Valient Concepts) currently makes and sells an 18650 E-series split tube model on Custom & Modified B/S/T. Surefire probably made the first adapters & cell extenders but thank goodness they don't make a split tube E-series
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  22. #22
    *Flashaholic* precisionworks's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    After speaking with Scott from TBSB (TranquilityBase) post #1, paragraph 1 is edited to read:

    NOTE: The ROTOR split body concept is inspired by the efforts, design work & machining first conducted by Scott Thomson of TBSB (TranquilityBase). TBSB also designed & sold an 18650 non-split design that fit the E-series head with a C-series tail (circa 2005). Thank you Scott for your split body design that has withstood the test of time & will continue to be popular for many years to come.
    It appears likely that The Crash Of CPF removed the references that I could not find during numerous web searches & CPF searches. Everyone today who enjoys the benefits of a super strong 18650 E-series tube can thank Scott for the time & effort he put into developing this timeless design.
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  23. #23
    Flashaholic* Obijuan Kenobe's Avatar
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    Absolutely first rate stuff.

    I am eagerly awaiting these.

    obi

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  24. #24
    *Flashaholic* easilyled's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    TBSB is the acronym for TranquillityBase Split Body
    TB is the shortened alias for TranquillityBase

    This is a TBSB:-

    Last edited by easilyled; 03-05-2012 at 02:54 AM.
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  25. #25
    Flashaholic* Obijuan Kenobe's Avatar
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    Gosh I have wanted one of these for so long. Maybe time for a WTB.

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  26. #26
    *Flashaholic* precisionworks's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    TBSB is the acronym for TranquillityBase Split Body
    Easilyled,

    Thanks for that clarification. The best I could guess at was Tranquility Base Scott ? Scott sent me another email last evening with more links to his earlier work.



    Stunning finish in your photograph It looks like Scott did some buffing/blending/polishing after machining. Here's a comparison image showing the "off the tool" finish produced when turning down the SWM V10R Ti :



    By moving slowly, taking a very fine (shallow) cut, and using a delicate finishing tool the surface roughness is 16 micro inches (0.4 micro meters). I'm expecting the ROTOR to finish out at 32 (0.8) as that is the finish most often specified for finely turned parts. Going smoother & more polished than 32 (0.8) is possible but that will substantially increase the cost & we want to avoid that.
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  27. #27
    *Flashaholic* easilyled's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    Very nice work, precisionworks, and a unique pattern.
    Last edited by easilyled; 03-05-2012 at 05:22 AM.
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  28. #28
    *Flashaholic* precisionworks's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    Quote Originally Posted by easilyled View Post
    Very nice work, precisionworks, and a unique pattern.
    TYVM

    I bought a SWM V10R Ti for prototyping purposes (aka organ donor or crash test dummy). As soon as the light was in my hand it became clear that something had to be done to the body. Every new light is compared to my gold standard - the McGizmo Haiku or McClickie Pak - probably an unfair comparison but that's the feel I wanted. Off to the lathe to slice & dice:



    That's the "before" image. The orange arrow points to the 55° diamond shaped carbide insert. At first glance that shape looked perfect for machining the groove mod but looking & feeling are sometimes quite different. The tube was reshaped many times but each by the same 55° tool. The angled rear surface allows the hand to slide forward onto the tube & the straight front surface keeps the hand in place.

    In the early discussion stages of the ROTOR we decided to use the same groove design. Neither of us had seen this before on any light & PEU thought it would work well. Being the creative type PEU decided to add angular rotation to each groove & came up with the ROTOR name.

    I'd call this the result of a machine shop experiment that ended well
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  29. #29
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    I'll probably have to buy (at least) one of these, but you know what I really want is the titanium Z52 to go with it
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  30. #30
    *Flashaholic* precisionworks's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ROTOR® - E-series compatible 18650 body

    Quote Originally Posted by notrefined View Post
    I'll probably have to buy (at least) one of these, but you know what I really want is the titanium Z52 to go with it
    LOL

    Maybe someday. And it will have to be significantly different than the SF Z52 because SF has a patent on every part they've ever made for their lights. Many of you are aware of the ongoing patent infringement lawsuit that SF brought against a number of companies. Neither PEU nor I want to see our name added to that list.
    Last edited by precisionworks; 03-05-2012 at 07:20 PM.
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