The Fenix-Store        
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 45

Thread: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

  1. #1
    Enlightened Preamp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    North Sea, Germany
    Posts
    54

    Red face Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Hello everybody.

    This is my first post on this forum. I've found quite some good informations in here, so I thought I'll just sign up and ask you pro's for some help...

    I am trying to fix my three years old Fenix LD-01 for the second time now . The error is basically the same, the solution, obviously, is not. But let's start from the beginning:
    When the Fenix stopped working for the first time, I could only get some light out of it twisting and pushing/bending it quite hard. My first thought was that the lower case didn't make a good contact to the PCB, so I added some solder to add up some height to the contact.
    Unfortunately this made things only worse, because the irregular surface added lots of switch bounce, driving the mode selector mad .
    So I went on and completely disassembled the Head. I cleaned the electronics from epoxy, took the PCB stack apart, and resoldered each and every component. After putting everything back together, it actually worked fine again. Up till now, about three weeks long.

    The actual problem now is this: When I turn the LD-01 on, it eventually starts to flicker uncontrolled for a couple of seconds. During this flicker, it manages to cycle through the modes until it ends in high power mode, where it continues to work as expected. Turning it off and on again, restarts the flickering process until it ends in high power mode again.

    So here I am now, ripped the whole thing apart again and wired it up do so some testing. The solder joints all seem to be OK now, I can't produce any misbehavior through knocking or pushing anywhere on any of the parts. I noticed that the core of the coil is broken, though. So I replaced it with another coil I had lying around, for testing purposes. This stopped the inductor whine (since I used a coated one ), but nothing else changed. Tried the same with the capacitors, but to no extend.

    A bit frustrated and not knowing what to do anymore, I started drawing a schematic, as good as possible. While measuring the connections, I tried to check for bad vias, but everything seems fine to me.
    Maybe some of you guys recognises which kind of driver is used and/or has some tips for me what else to look for.


    Thanks in advance and kind regards,
    Lasse





  2. #2
    Moderator
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    CA
    Posts
    11,299

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Not saying that this is the case, but have you checked the tailcap electrical contact ring? It has two indents in it too allow for tightening, and loosening. Many Fenix's have had the issue of the contact ring unscrewing a little and causing finicky contact with the end of the flashlight body.

    Bill

  3. #3
    Administrator Kestrel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Willamette Valley, OR
    Posts
    5,868

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Wow, nice first post. Good luck on the repair,

  4. #4
    Enlightened Preamp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    North Sea, Germany
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    No, I did not check it. But since I have the electronics laid out on my bench, soldered wires to the battery contacts and connected them to a power supply, I can exclude it for now, I guess.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Quote Originally Posted by Bullzeyebill View Post
    Not saying that this is the case, but have you checked the tailcap electrical contact ring? It has two indents in it too allow for tightening, and loosening. Many Fenix's have had the issue of the contact ring unscrewing a little and causing finicky contact with the end of the flashlight body.

    Bill
    Are you thinking of the LD10, rather than the LD-01? The "tailcap" on the LD-01 is essentially the body of the light, and is over an inch long - I can't see any contact ring with indents like on a bigger light down there, just the spring.
    Sorry I can't help OP.

  6. #6
    HKJ's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Copenhagen, Denmark
    Posts
    8,561

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Quote Originally Posted by Preamp View Post


    I cannot tell you what the fault is, but I can give your a good idea about how it works (Maybe you have already figured that out):

    The PCB with the inductor is a boost converter that increases the voltage up to led level, i.e. 3.5 to 4 volt.
    On the other board you have a voltage detector (marked 22), a microprocessor (unmarked chip) and a transistor (marked AGSE).
    C3 and C4 is used to maintain power to the microprocessor when you turn off/on to change brightness level, this fast power drop is detected by "22" and signalled to the microprocessor.

    You can check that the boost converter has a stable output voltage.
    The wire from "22" to microprocessor must have a stable voltage, until the voltage drops, then it must change to another voltage.
    My website with battery and charger information: lygte-info.
    More than 1000 reviews of batteries, charges and other stuff.
    Compare 18650 LiIon batteries or smaller (RCR123, 16340, 14500, 10450) LiIon batteries.

  7. #7
    Enlightened Preamp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    North Sea, Germany
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    HKJ,

    thanks for explaining the circuit. I was quite sure about the boost converter and the FET, the microcontroller was a careful guess, but I had no idea about the voltage detector.
    The wire you mentioned is stable at 0V when the circuit is running in high power mode. In the 'flicker mode' this one is also flickering .

    If I am assuming correct, I could simply leave the first board out and connect the second one directly to 4V, right? I'll try this tomorrow.

  8. #8
    HKJ's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Copenhagen, Denmark
    Posts
    8,561

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Quote Originally Posted by Preamp View Post
    If I am assuming correct, I could simply leave the first board out and connect the second one directly to 4V, right? I'll try this tomorrow.
    I will recommend including a resistor in series with the power supply, maybe 1 ohm. This way you avoid driving the led into a very high current direct drive mode.
    My website with battery and charger information: lygte-info.
    More than 1000 reviews of batteries, charges and other stuff.
    Compare 18650 LiIon batteries or smaller (RCR123, 16340, 14500, 10450) LiIon batteries.

  9. #9
    Enlightened Preamp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    North Sea, Germany
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    My bench supply is current limited. The whole circuit uses about 800mA in high power mode, so I'll start out with something like 500mA.

    Do you have an idea which type of boost converter might be used here?

  10. #10
    HKJ's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Copenhagen, Denmark
    Posts
    8,561

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Quote Originally Posted by Preamp View Post
    My bench supply is current limited. The whole circuit uses about 800mA in high power mode, so I'll start out with something like 500mA.
    500mA is a bit high, remember that the boost converter will nearly triple the voltage, i.e. you only have about 270mA for the led and processor.
    Many bench power supplies is a bit slow in current limiting, i.e. you might get a current spike, it is much safer to include a resistor in the circuit.


    Quote Originally Posted by Preamp View Post
    Do you have an idea which type of boost converter might be used here?
    I do not know what chip is used.

    My explanation was based on your schematic, not on studying the internals of a LD01.
    My website with battery and charger information: lygte-info.
    More than 1000 reviews of batteries, charges and other stuff.
    Compare 18650 LiIon batteries or smaller (RCR123, 16340, 14500, 10450) LiIon batteries.

  11. #11
    Enlightened Preamp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    North Sea, Germany
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Quote Originally Posted by HKJ View Post
    500mA is a bit high, remember that the boost converter will nearly triple the voltage, i.e. you only have about 270mA for the led and processor.
    Many bench power supplies is a bit slow in current limiting, i.e. you might get a current spike, it is much safer to include a resistor in the circuit.
    Okay, I'll be on the safe side. Thanks again!

    Quote Originally Posted by HKJ View Post
    I do not know what chip is used.
    My explanation was based on your schematic, not on studying the internals of a LD01.
    I thought you might know some commonly used regulator chips and could make a quick guess based on the pinout...

  12. #12
    Enlightened Preamp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    North Sea, Germany
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Okay, the test ran fine. So at least this part is working as expected .

    Now to the regulator part. I connected a small 6V bulb as dummy load and it behaved like before, flickering for a couple of seconds and then running fine. I did this test with the 10uf-cap replaced by a 4u7 electrolyte. When putting everything back to 'stock parts', the regulator refused to do anything .

    So I removed all the components from the board and cleaned it. Didn't find any hidden vias or tracks that might have failed, though. Suspecting the regulator chip itself to be errorneous, I went on and scraped the black epoxy off of its top to reveal his name. After complaining that I don't own a good microscope anymore , I put the chip on my scanner and actually managed to read the marking .

    The used regulator is an AIC1610. I drew it on top, so here's an updated schematic:





    Maybe if I manage to be really bored, I try to hook up the circuit on a 'breadboard' to make sure that it's not a faulty PCB. I still guess this might be the possible, since it does have to withstand some pressure... But a defective IC seems more likely to me.
    Now where to get a new one...? Seems quite unobtainium
    Last edited by Preamp; 10-19-2012 at 04:14 AM. Reason: Line breaks got lost...

  13. #13
    Retired Administrator Norm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    9,515

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Quote Originally Posted by Preamp View Post
    I put the chip on my scanner and actually managed to read the marking .
    Great lateral thinking

    Norm

  14. #14
    Enlightened Preamp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    North Sea, Germany
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Damn thing . After thoroughly removing the epoxy residue between the legs of the IC I re-populated the board and tested again - everything fine. So I put the whole thing back together. The light is working better than before now, but not as good as it should. It lets me cycle the modes and does not flicker anymore, but I have to twist the head on really tight and occasionally it simply stops working. I'm already tempted to scrap that thing...

  15. #15

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Preamp, your effort is just astounding. I don't remember that someone on the forums gathered so much information on LD01 circuit than you did in these few days. I owned two LD01s and one of them is now my EDC, so I know the measures of those circuit boards, they're TINY.

    Maybe it's time to put your little companion to rest...

    Cheers

  16. #16
    Enlightened Preamp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    North Sea, Germany
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Thank you for your kind words.

    Guess that's what I'll be doing. But what is buggering me is this: If I put the LD01 to rest, what will be it's successor? I do want an AAA for EDC, so the LD01 is the perfect fit! I didn't find anyhing equal yet. Guess I'll have to dive into bunches of reviews again...
    Or buy another LD01 and pray that it'll last longer .

  17. #17

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    IMO the only light worth considering to replace the LD01 is another LD01 (updated of course, as I can see yours is an older XR-E version). Newer XP-G R4 and R5 versions will give less throw and tend to produce a greenish tint, but their runtimes are way better. I'd never give up my E05, either.

    Cheers

  18. #18

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Or a thrunite TI.

  19. #19
    Enlightened Preamp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    North Sea, Germany
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Quote Originally Posted by scaru View Post
    Or a thrunite TI.
    Don't like the regulator of the TI, as its brightness drops with battery voltage. The Ray S20 or the Titaner ET20 would have been nice, but they're not available anymore as it seems. Guess I'll have a look at the Fenix LD15 then.

    And one day I'll build a completely new driver and resurrect my LD01!

  20. #20

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Quote Originally Posted by Preamp View Post
    Guess I'll have a look at the Fenix LD15 then.
    Believe me, LD15 is nowhere near LD01. It lacks Medium mode (a big minus IMO), heats up quickly in High mode and tint (at least on mine) is sickly greenish , almost unbearable in Low mode due to tint shift. It's very compact and dead simple, though.

    Cheers

  21. #21
    Enlightened Preamp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    North Sea, Germany
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    You're not making it easier for me...

  22. #22
    Enlightened Preamp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    North Sea, Germany
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Ordered an LD15 now . Didn't want to go for another LD01, though I'll really miss the stainless steel body .

    Meanwhile I designed a new board with an available regulator.
    The IC itself will be about EUR 7,- without shipping, but I don't event want to know what the PCB manufacturing would cost me ...


    Original board:



    Preliminary draft:


    You'll be the first to know should I decide to actually attempt building it .

  23. #23
    Retired Administrator Norm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    9,515

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Great work and determination

    Norm

  24. #24
    Enlightened Preamp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    North Sea, Germany
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Thanks for your encouraging words, Norm! It keeps me thinking that I'm not completely nuts doing this .

    Since I'll have to order the chip at Farnell, I had a look for a new coil. Found a pretty neat one from WŁrth. It's the same height but a smaller footprint, while having only 100mR max and 1.8A saturaton current. Will be another EUR 2,-, but this way I manage to have the space left for the much easier to handle S8 package. The original MSOP8 has been hard enough to solder by hand, the aforementioned DFN8 would have been a real pain in the... Here's the new draft:


  25. #25
    Flashaholic* všlineurheilija's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Finland
    Posts
    674

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Have you checked that the spring in the bottom of the bodytube is making a firm enough contact?sometimes the faults are simpler than you would think sorry for the post if you allready ruled that out and good luck trying to find out the problem

  26. #26
    Enlightened Preamp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    North Sea, Germany
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Yes, I checked the spring several times now. Also the whole thing is not susceptible to knocking anywhere.

    I'll have the new board made soon. Found a cheap offer; will be about EUR 20,- with a minimum board size of 12cm x 8cm... Enough space for four dozens !

  27. #27
    Flashaholic* koala's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    2,281

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Chinese chips hard to find? You are probably looking at the wrong place. Plenty if you know where to start

    http://www.utsource.net/aic1610.html


    tapatalk
    Arc4+ mods/repair. LED drop in for SF E-Series. Onion Rings for SF A2.

  28. #28
    Enlightened Preamp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    North Sea, Germany
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    koala, I only looked at some local suppliers. For a valid reason, as it seems: Utsource has a minimum order of 10 bucks plus 25 shipping to germany! That's too much for not being sure if it's not the PCB.
    Looks promising though, I'll keep it in mind for future reference.

    I'm currently working on an LED-based bike light where I need a PCB for, too. This small board here will fit in an empty corner easily, so the board costs are almost nil. Ordered the LTC3490 as sample, so it's free, too. My employer is going to place an order at RS-Components soon, so I'll save shipping costs and get inductor and capacitor from there. Not exactly my favorite components and I'll have to get 5 pieces at once, but still cheaper than Farnell's shipping.
    Turns out not to be as costly as expected in the first place .

  29. #29
    Enlightened Preamp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    North Sea, Germany
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    Quote Originally Posted by tam17 View Post
    Believe me, LD15 is nowhere near LD01. It lacks Medium mode (a big minus IMO), heats up quickly in High mode and tint (at least on mine) is sickly greenish , almost unbearable in Low mode due to tint shift. It's very compact and dead simple, though.
    Received my LD-15 yesterday. The tint is absolutely not greenish, it's even quite purplish! My LD-01 looks a bit greenish in direct comparison, or "ghostly", as my wife said . The head is a bit short for my taste, but all in all I'm satisfied with it. Look and feel is great, hope longevity is as well!

    To be not too far off topic, here's a simulated graph of the new regulator's efficiency with some contemplable inductors:



    Simulated load was a 1W LED at about 3,2V and 340mA max.

  30. #30
    Enlightened Preamp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    North Sea, Germany
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Repairing a Fenix LD-01, need some help

    The circuit board arrived today. Still waitin' for the inductor, but I'll let you know when (or if) everyting's working.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •