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Thread: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights ** Terra versions added**

  1. #31
    Flashaholic* dmdrewitt's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Don

    AW offers several protected 18650

    http://www.cpfmarketplace.com/mp/sho...read-*Part-12*

    The newest ones don't seem to offer a button top.

    Does your design require a button top cell?

    For example

    - Protected 18650 ( 2200mAH ) ---- $12.00 each *Upgraded *Button Top Cell

    David

  2. #32
    Flashaholic* London Lad's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Guys these Aqua lights are something special. Try and get yourself one if you can.

    They have a rock solid, indestructible feel about them just like the old 27LT and the beams are just perfect. The Mule has an amazingly wide angle of flood.

    The U/I is pretty much perfect too and I haven't even started playing with the available driver customizations! I find it easier to move from level to level than a clicky U/I.

    I'll try and find time and the words to write up a semi decent review at some stage but there are others here that are much better at such things.

    One thing that I should point out is that the photo of the Mule head Don has posted above is obviously his development light as the production Mule is perfect under the lens with no scratches or re-soldering.
    Last edited by London Lad; 10-17-2013 at 01:49 AM.


  3. #33
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    Default AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Quote Originally Posted by McGizmo View Post
    Head OD is 1 3/8". Light is 5 3/8" long. Battery tube is 1" OD.
    Do you know the weight of the light with battery? I'd like to compare with something I already have. Thanks!
    McGizmo&Sebenza: Get It, Use It, Love It, BAN IT!! McGizmo Haiku Review Mac's Tri EDC Review Malkoff MDC Review MY LIGHTS

  4. #34
    Enlightened Dimitris.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Quote Originally Posted by London Lad View Post
    Guys these Aqua lights are something special. Try and get yourself one if you can.

    They have a rock solid, indestructible feel about them just like the old 27LT and the beams are just perfect. The Mule has an amazingly wide angle of flood.

    The U/I is pretty much perfect too and I haven't even started playing with the available driver customizations! I find it easier to move from level to level than a clicky U/I.

    I'll try and find time and the words to write up a semi decent review at some stage but there are others here that are much better at such things.

    One thing that I should point out is that the photo of the Mule head Don has posted above is obviously his development light as the production Mule is perfect under the lens with no scratches or re-soldering.


    Pix or never happened.

    Congrats and enjoy it in good health.

  5. #35
    Flashaholic* BenChiew's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Don. For the benefit of all.
    Since the primary usage environment of this light is under water, in your opinion, will this light be suitable for out of water usage?

  6. #36
    *Flashaholic* PoliceScannerMan's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Quote Originally Posted by BenChiew View Post
    Don. For the benefit of all.
    Since the primary usage environment of this light is under water, in your opinion, will this light be suitable for out of water usage?
    Of course Ben!!! Have you ever owned a 27LT? It is one hell of a tank of a light, there is plenty of material to absorb the heat.

    Back in the day Don made a few 27LT's from Ti. AYTYD and EricMack had one, I think only 5 were made from Ti, I got to hold one of them at SHOT show 2006 or 2008 I don't remember which. Ever since then I have lusted for a Ti 27LT. This light should survive the zombie apocalypse. Thick Ti, no Clicky to break, no Kilroy to wear out. Chunky and it runs on 18650 with plenty of warning before it leaves you in the dark, and the driver is reprogrammable 1-5 levels with 2.2A max.... What's not to like?

  7. #37
    Flashaholic* London Lad's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Quote Originally Posted by Dimitris. View Post


    Pix or never happened.

    Congrats and enjoy it in good health.


    Last edited by London Lad; 10-17-2013 at 07:23 AM.


  8. #38
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Quote Originally Posted by BenChiew View Post
    Don. For the benefit of all.
    Since the primary usage environment of this light is under water, in your opinion, will this light be suitable for out of water usage?
    What could be the issue? Heat Managment? Of course the light will stay much cooler under water.... Still, you would think, based on other titanium lights, the LED is not being overdriven enough, where water would be needed to cool it....

  9. #39
    Flashaholic* London Lad's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Quote Originally Posted by BenChiew View Post
    Don. For the benefit of all.
    Since the primary usage environment of this light is under water, in your opinion, will this light be suitable for out of water usage?
    FWIW Ben, I ran the Mule in my hand, for a walk last night, at full power for over an hour and it didn't get uncomfortably hot at all.


  10. #40
    Flashaholic* BenChiew's Avatar
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    Default AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Quote Originally Posted by London Lad View Post
    FWIW Ben, I ran the Mule in my hand, for a walk last night, at full power for over an hour and it didn't get uncomfortably hot at all.
    Wow wow wow. All three. What a grand entrance.

    Thanks for all those feedback.
    It serves as good record for all to see that the Aqua line is in its elements even in not so aqua environment.

  11. #41
    *Flashaholic* McGizmo's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Quote Originally Posted by dmdrewitt View Post
    Don

    AW offers several protected 18650

    http://www.cpfmarketplace.com/mp/sho...read-*Part-12*

    The newest ones don't seem to offer a button top.

    Does your design require a button top cell?

    For example

    - Protected 18650 ( 2200mAH ) ---- $12.00 each *Upgraded *Button Top Cell

    David
    Hi David,
    I am pretty much ignorant in regards to all of the 18650's out there and wasn't even aware that an 18650 came with a button top. The 18650's I have been using are the ones depicted in your link and they have no button top. I am using a thick sterling silver bead for anode contact and it stands above the contact ring to accommodate a flush anode contact on the battery. I should comment that one concern I do have is that if the anode contact on the battery were to be significantly concave, it might make contact with the PCB screw which would induce a direct short. Should anyone be using a battery or the light in an application where they feel this could come about, I would suggest putting some protective film over the screw. Actually I have considered using a good hard nail polish to paint over the exposed surface of the PCB to provide a protective mask over the circuit traces on my own lights. I haven't bothered to do so because I plan to keep the interior of the light free from any debris.

    I should also mention that I am assembling these lights using Christo Lube MCG 111 grease. A fellow CPFer turned me on to this grease a couple years back as an alternative to the Krytox which he was unable to source in his country. He said it was similar in properties to the Krytox and I have found his claim to be valid. I've since noticed that with some quality UW camera housings I bought that they seem to be using this grease or a similar one provided for the silicone o-rings in the housing.

    As for using these lights out of the water, I see no problem in doing so and I have. I have a titanium Luminox dive watch that I wear 24-7-365 and I think of the Aqua Lights in the same manner; if it's good enough to go with you under water, it's good enough to go with you anywhere and no worries. What I don't know is what kind of depth rating would be reasonable for these lights or what the external pressure, at depth, might do to the twisting ability and on-off or level change of the light. I am confident the light can hold up to pressures exceeding the human body but to date have no empirical data. A good argument can be made for a magnet and reed switch or hall effect switch to be used on a dive light but then this adds complexity as well as possibly parasitic drain; neither of which comply with my design goals.

    These lights are heavy and could likely serve up a fair amount of abuse as well as take it. The AquaMule with AW cell weighs 7.2 oz and the Aqua Ram with AW cell weighs 6.8 oz. The difference being the amount of aluminum in the two. (evident in the cross section dwg of their respective heads above).

    A final comment for this post is in regards to the battery spring. Initially I was using the same silver plated spring I used in the 27LT's but with feed back from Martin I looked into a softer spring and opted for the "D" size Lee Spring battery spring. The lower spring force allows for easier twisting of the head for level changing. A good smack straight on the tail of the light will also give you a level change as the battery momentarily compresses the spring and looses contact at the anode. I can't imagine this is great on the battery if done frequently but it does serve as an alternate level shift should the need arise. I found holding the light in a fist with the tail inside my hand and then slapping the bottom of my fist with the palm of the other hand will give me a light shift without hurting my hand.
    Build Prices .... some mods and builds (not 4 sale) "Nature can be cruel- but we don't have to be."~ Temple Grandin

  12. #42
    Flashaholic* Obijuan Kenobe's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Quote Originally Posted by McGizmo View Post
    A final comment for this post is in regards to the battery spring. Initially I was using the same silver plated spring I used in the 27LT's but with feed back from Martin I looked into a softer spring and opted for the "D" size Lee Spring battery spring. The lower spring force allows for easier twisting of the head for level changing. A good smack straight on the tail of the light will also give you a level change as the battery momentarily compresses the spring and looses contact at the anode. I can't imagine this is great on the battery if done frequently but it does serve as an alternate level shift should the need arise. I found holding the light in a fist with the tail inside my hand and then slapping the bottom of my fist with the palm of the other hand will give me a light shift without hurting my hand.
    I can do with with all my McGizmo's, although I rarely do. I posted this once.

    I love these I think....

    obi
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  13. #43
    Enlightened Dimitris.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    As I understand, Aqua is an improved resurrected model (27LT)?

  14. #44
    *Flashaholic* McGizmo's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    It looks like I failed to mention that the XM-L2 LED's I am working with are bin U2 1C which are the brightest LED's I could get my hands on. These would be considered cool white in tint or color temperature. I am not going to get involved with stocking other bins and offering various tints or color temperatures. The maintenance and expense of my inventory not to mention time is overwhelming enough as it is!

    I have also been queried already if a clickie pak is possible. Yes, a clickie pak is possible as would be a PD style pak. However at this point in time I have no definite plans to go further with this new platform beyond what is being offered here. I can't say what the future might bring.
    Build Prices .... some mods and builds (not 4 sale) "Nature can be cruel- but we don't have to be."~ Temple Grandin

  15. #45
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Oh No !! .......just saw this thread ............now I have to get some money together , I gotta have one

  16. #46
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights





    I found some more clear pictures of the tail end; it strikes me that it would be quite a solid attachment point to have something that inserts into the tail and gets screwed into through the 3 lanyard attachment holes. I'm not sure what exactly, but I'm sure someone will think of something. Maybe along the lines of the glass breaker tail caps for the big Maglights?

    There are more good pictures at Pro Light Japan's web site, I hope they don't mind my reposting a couple of them here:
    http://www.pro-light.jp/mcgizmo/mcgizmo_1.html

  17. #47
    *Flashaholic* McGizmo's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Quote Originally Posted by Dimitris. View Post
    As I understand, Aqua is an improved resurrected model (27LT)?
    The Aqua lights are very similar in appearance to the 27LT and this is due to the function and fit of the 27LT in hand which I personally have always liked. However internally they are significantly different. My first priority was the Aqua Mule and I had modified a 27LT along those lines. I wanted the larger head diameter to allow for a greater escape angle for the LED as well as allowing for more volume/ mass for the heat sink to handle the heat generated by driving the LED harder than I usually do. I felt the threaded heat sink was a good solution with improved thermal transfer to the head itself. I kept the head deeper than needed for the Mule because I was certain that I would want to turn to a reflector version once I had the Mule sorted out. I wanted the reflector to take a more active part in thermal relief than my other lights have and having it threaded as well was really an obvious choice. To have it serve to transfer heat from the MCPCB directly required I design it so that it clamps down on the MCPCB. I increased the focal length of the reflector to allow it to do a better job of collimating the light from the XM-L than the Haiku reflector does.

    I let form follow function because when it really counts, you aren't looking at the light, rather what it is illuminating and the better it works and the easier it is to use, the better it is. I really like the way this light works and holds and have come to appreciate its appearance as a result.

    Because we went with a larger diameter converter board for a number of reasons Martin and I also came to agree that a thicker PCB would be a good idea so this converter is on a pretty thick section of board.
    Build Prices .... some mods and builds (not 4 sale) "Nature can be cruel- but we don't have to be."~ Temple Grandin

  18. #48
    *Flashaholic* McGizmo's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Quote Originally Posted by mattp View Post




    I found some more clear pictures of the tail end; it strikes me that it would be quite a solid attachment point to have something that inserts into the tail and gets screwed into through the 3 lanyard attachment holes. I'm not sure what exactly, but I'm sure someone will think of something. Maybe along the lines of the glass breaker tail caps for the big Maglights?

    There are more good pictures at Pro Light Japan's web site, I hope they don't mind my reposting a couple of them here:
    http://www.pro-light.jp/mcgizmo/mcgizmo_1.html
    Yeah, I have considered the ability to mount something to the tail as well but to date haven't come up with anything I really wanted. But there is certainly a solid foundation there should someone want to build on it. I was going to make a removable 1/4"x20 threaded end a couple years ago so I could have the light spin on one of the swivels on a web coil lanyard but I wasn't willing to put the effort into it. I have also thought about a tritium insert that could be set in the tail, a custom titanium Cloisonné or gold coin of sorts or even a piece of meteor I once got from a CPFer. Or for a joke, one of those tiny usless compasses.
    Build Prices .... some mods and builds (not 4 sale) "Nature can be cruel- but we don't have to be."~ Temple Grandin

  19. #49
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Quote Originally Posted by PoliceScannerMan View Post
    Back in the day Don made a few 27LT's from Ti. AYTYD and EricMack had one, I think only 5 were made from Ti, I got to hold one of them at SHOT show 2006 or 2008 I don't remember which.
    Brandon, that's right (and I think the one you held was mine). One of the best built tanks of a light ever made. From Daniel's pic, above, he was also one of the original owners. bf1 also owns one of the original protos as well.

    This is a long-time dream come true for many of us McGizmoholics. For years we've been begging Don to make a run of the 27LT in Ti, so this new light, with its 27LT retro style, is SO awesome, and the fact that this line is truly underwater safe makes it even better than the original.

    Don, since you had to reconfigure the pak to accommodate an 18650 by (judging from Daniel's pic) elongating and expanding the threaded area, are we correct to assume the wall thickness has been lessened by 1/16" from the original design (meaning 1/16" less wall meat, or 1/32 all around), or did the OD of the pak increase by 1/16" as well, in order to keep the same wall thickness? Just curious - I know there was a ton of meat in the first place.

    E-Mail sent for one of each.
    Last edited by arewethereyetdad; 10-18-2013 at 11:03 AM.

  20. #50
    Flashaholic* London Lad's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    You wont be sorry Dad, these are a modern take on a true classic with all the great things from the original retained or done even better!


  21. #51
    easilyled's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    email sent for an Aqua Ram XM-L2 U2 1C
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  22. #52
    *Flashaholic* McGizmo's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Dad,
    The wall thickness at the threaded area of the battery tube has been reduced by 1/32". In the battery area, the wall thickness is the same as the aluminum 27LT. Since there is no internal brass sleeve in the Aqua it can accommodate the 18650. I can't recall what the bore was on those original prototype lights since you guys talked me out of all of them I can't take a look at one.

    I don't see how anyone could crush or deform one of these lights without really putting some effort and force into it.

    The 27LT in aluminum is a pretty robust light and the Aqua is essentially the same geometry but in titanium. The Aqua is a light but it's not light.
    Build Prices .... some mods and builds (not 4 sale) "Nature can be cruel- but we don't have to be."~ Temple Grandin

  23. #53
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Quote Originally Posted by McGizmo View Post
    Dad,
    The wall thickness at the threaded area of the battery tube has been reduced by 1/32". In the battery area, the wall thickness is the same as the aluminum 27LT. Since there is no internal brass sleeve in the Aqua it can accommodate the 18650. I can't recall what the bore was on those original prototype lights since you guys talked me out of all of them I can't take a look at one.

    I don't see how anyone could crush or deform one of these lights without really putting some effort and force into it.

    The 27LT in aluminum is a pretty robust light and the Aqua is essentially the same geometry but in titanium. The Aqua is a light but it's not light.
    Awesome. Thanks Don!

  24. #54
    Flashaholic Megatrowned's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Wow! What an awesome light! I really like the style you have designed in to all of your lights. They are completely unique, and there is no doubt that they are all from the same 'family'.


    I have a thought regarding a mount that would fit in the tail recess. There is most likely a proper term for this, but I am thinking of the latches on a extendable handle, such as a suitcase. I'm referring to the small ball bearing that locks into a detent, and can be released by pushing a button. I have also seen a keychain that will separate into two pieces using this method.


    Could something be made to fit the lights tail recess, with three of this style ball locks to line up with the three lanyard holes? This part could then be designed to mount to a under water camera, or to anything which one would want a solid quick release/attachment point.
    Welcome to the Dark Side! Which just also happens to be the Light Side.

  25. #55
    *Flashaholic* McGizmo's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Megatrowned,
    I know exactly what you mean and an example I am familiar with is the Avibank pins I have sold, used and messed around with. There are also some quick connect garden hos fittings in brass that have three balls that lock in a fitting more in line with what you suggest. But it is also pretty straight forward simply clamping to the body of the light. I was using a bike clamp from GoPro with the modified 27LT I have but went ahead and made my own GoPro bracket for the AquaMule out of ABS on a 3D printer:



    It's quite handy to use and when you want to shoot video you just hit the start button with your thumb while continuing to hold the light.
    Build Prices .... some mods and builds (not 4 sale) "Nature can be cruel- but we don't have to be."~ Temple Grandin

  26. #56
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Don- That setup looks like it balances perfectly...

  27. #57
    *Flashaholic* PoliceScannerMan's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Looks like a coated Clip on there too. AlTin or whatever its called. Nice.

  28. #58
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Quote Originally Posted by PoliceScannerMan View Post
    Looks like a coated Clip on there too. AlTin or whatever its called. Nice.
    Yeah, yeah, sure, whatever......but LOOK, just LOOK at that AWESOME, SEXY. STUNNING light!!!!

  29. #59
    *Flashaholic* McGizmo's Avatar
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Quote Originally Posted by PoliceScannerMan View Post
    Looks like a coated Clip on there too. AlTin or whatever its called. Nice.
    Yeah. one of modamag's deals. Carbo diamond something or other. I forget. I use them to identify non stock builds on my personal lights. I have an AquaMule anodized in blue that hosts a Nichia UV LED.
    Build Prices .... some mods and builds (not 4 sale) "Nature can be cruel- but we don't have to be."~ Temple Grandin

  30. #60
    Enlightened
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    Default Re: AquaMule and AquaRam 18650 lights

    Hello, How is one handed operation ? ie. changing levels ? Is it as easy as the Haiku ? Thanks..

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