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Thread: Owner's Manual SPY 005 DownBoy Driver (Lux 3)

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    Arrow Owner's Manual SPY 005 DownBoy Driver (Lux 3)

    Owner's Manual SPY 005 DownBoy Driver (Lux 3)

    Quick Notes
    first Cool Fall SPY flashlight
    aluminum parts
    chrome plated head and knob

    Luxeon 3 emitter

    1) Quick start guide
    If your light came with batteries installed, you can simply turn it on by twisting the little round knob. Never look directly or let anybody look directly into such a powerful light - it gets very bright and can hurt your eyes.

    The SPY knob (switch) clicks into 7 discrete locations. They are positions zero through six. Looking at the knob from the front of the light (the LED end), the knob functions like a standard volume control, rotating the knob all the way in the CCW direction till it stops, is the “Off” position (zero position). Rotating the knob CW turns the light “ON”. The off switch setting is referred to as position 0. Switch setting 1 is the lowest power setting, setting 2 is higher, and so it goes all the way to full power with setting 6. There is a stop at Off and a stop at full power, meaning you can not spin the knob all the way around 360 degrees.

    If you tried to turn the light on and nothing happened, then it is because the light does not have batteries in it. Please see section 2 on how to change batteries. All SPY flashlights are shipped without batteries installed.

    2) Changing batteries
    If your light has batteries in it and you push on the tiny battery release pin with the pointy lead end of a pencil or pen, the battery cap will pop off! Please hold your finger over the cap as you push the pin so it does not go flying.

    If your light does not have batteries in it and you push on the tiny battery release pin, the battery cap will DO NOTHING. It will not come off. You have to pull it off while pushing on the pin at the same time. Please be careful not to drop the battery cap in this process. It helps to have three hands when doing this. The battery cap goes on smoothly when it is aligned with the two hook pins on the body. It becomes easy to do if you play with it. There is a mark on the body by the lanyard hole to show you how to align the battery cap (if you take the battery cap off the light and rotate it 180 degrees and try to put it back on, it will not fit on).

    After you have been using the light for some time, if you notice that power level 6 (high) and power level 5 are at the same brightness then it is time to replace the batteries. The SPY uses CR-123 lithium primary batteries. Cool Fall recommends that you use Surefire batteries in the SPY. Only use two new batteries in the SPY (two bats that have the same voltage level). Never use one old battery and one new battery; never never never. The SPY will operate on rechargeable RCR-123 batteries.

    When you are putting the batteries in the light please observe that they have polarity. On the battery that goes behind the LED, please put the “+” end in first. The other battery goes in with the “-” end in first. The battery cap must be pushed straight on. If it gets crooked it will stick and you have to take it off and start again. You can not hurt the light by putting the batteries in the wrong way. When changing batteries use power-up-0; the switch set to the off position by turning the knob fully counter-clockwise when facing the flat top of the knob (see Section 5 for more info).

    3) How to use the 005
    The multiple power levels let you rapidly choose the amount of light you need for any given task. Picking a lower light level will prolong the battery life.

    Getting the light out and rapidly spinning or flicking the switch to full “ON” is not only fun but it is a very fast way to turn on the SPY.

    We can’t say what is the “best” way to hold the SPY, there are several common ways. Some like the knob down with your fingers wrapping around the light and others like the knob on top. Some use fingers to spin the knob and others use the thumb. In either case it only takes one hand to use a SPY.

    Battery consumption
    Power levels 5 & 6 will use up batteries quickly. Therefore, if you are on a long trip with only one set of batteries, use the lower power levels as much as possible to conserve battery power.

    This little every-day-carry light has 6 levels of buck boost regulated power controlled by a silver knob on the “front” of the light. It loads two CR-123 lithium cells, a top bin Lux3, the finest orange peel reflector and a super trick battery cap.

    The SPY005’s most unique feature, its side-by-side arrangement of two batteries, is made possible by the advanced CNC machined body and battery cap. The machining required to manufacture this light is extensive and it sets the SPY apart from any other light ever offered for sale. With its two primary cells, the SPY has extended run times while providing a considerable level of light.

    The side-by-side arrangement of batteries also provides an optimum location for the brightness level control knob. When the user rotates the knob, it clicks from the off position and continues clicking through 6 discrete regulated output levels. The first level is a very low nightlight setting, perfect for a dark room or tent. The middle 4 levels will be the ones used most, and the highest level, intended for intermittent use only, drives the LED at 1000mA providing a very bright combination of fill and throw. Holding the light in the palm of your hand with the knob up or knob down seems natural either way. It soon becomes quite addicting to play with.

    · Batteries: two CR123 primary lithium, run in series
    · LED; Luxeon 3 Under 4Vf, premium bin
    · Six regulated light levels, high efficiency buck/boost converter by Wayne Yamaguchi
    · Current levels: 1000*, 700, 400, 100, 20, 6mA, * intermittent use only
    · Rotary switch is mil-spec’ed and rated for a minimum of 10,000 full cycles
    · Reflector is McR-18
    · Body made of 6061-T6 aluminum HA III natural finish or black.
    · Head made of 2024 aluminum 0.88” in diameter and is chrome plated on outside surface
    · Water resistant with o-ring seals at the head, cap and knob
    · Overall dimensions: 3.03” x 1.52” x 0.88”
    · Six month warranty, replacement parts and service will be available for several years

    Wayne and I made it our goal from the very beginning to pack a lot of power into this little light. The converter board is a powerful 1000mA output, very efficient buck boost design that is regulated at all six of its power levels. It is designed to work with primary cells only.
    The highest power setting on the SPY is set to one amp. That is the maximum power a Luxeon III can take before its lifespan is unduly shortened. When you apply close to 5 W of power into this tiny light it will heat up quickly! The top power level is intended for intermittent usage only. This restriction is suggested primarily as a safety precaution because the light will get too hot to hold and its runtime will of course be quite short. When using the lower power settings on this extremely efficient converter the runtimes will prove to be quite long for an EDC light. Its lowest power setting is about 6mA.

    The heart of the SPY flashlight and what makes the whole design concept possible is a very high-quality seven-position super micro military spec’ed rotary switch. When you hold this switch in your hand you can hardly believe they were able to make it so small. Grayhill manufactures the switch and to my knowledge there is no substitute available in the marketplace. For the SPY to be as small as it is, the switch had to be so tiny that it actually resides partially inside of the knob on the front of the light. This very special little switch is rated for 10,000 full actuations while carrying its full rated current. Wayne’s converter board does not tax the switch and we believe it will last indefinitely.

    One of the most unique features of the SPY is its battery cap with a hidden latching mechanism. This cap was designed so that the light would be only slightly larger than the two CR-123 cells that the body houses (0.070” wall thickness on body ). I believe the people in our CPF community will really appreciate its design and function. I do feel compelled to give everyone a minor note of caution. The battery cap, though it works quite well and is nearly indestructible, is not as easy to use as a standard screw on battery cap. Taking the cap off is easy; you simply press on the hidden release pin and pull the cap off. Putting the cap on is where some additional dexterity is required. You must hold the cap aligning its holes with the engagement pins protruding from the body. If you get it straight it will go right on and require only a firm push at the end to seat the o-ring right as the latching mechanism engages. Lastly, you should check that the release pin popped all the way out, that pin is the visual verification that the mechanism is fully latched. Please understand I'm not trying to scare anyone. I just want you to realize that the SPY is tiny and some level of dexterity is needed to replace the batteries. You may never see such an intricate micro mechanical device offered to the public in a common retail store because certain people would never take the time to learn to use it.

    The two small setscrews in the side of some of the lights are for the lanyard attachment point. The light will be delivered with a very simple and thin digital camera type of lanyard and a set of screws for a small metal lanyard attachment hoop. The lanyard itself has no metal parts and is thin enough to be pushed into your pocket with the light. This kind of lanyard is for your wrist only. There may be a pocket clip and cell phone button adapter available as accessories at a later date.

    We had a lot of fun with the logo design contest. Many superb logos were submitted. The winner was Low Worm’s outline of a crow standing on the SPY letters. The first and second runner-up are also excellent logo designs. The voting showed that many of you do not want any logo on the light. I have decided to make the logo optional and in addition, allow you to pick between the top three logos. This decision is pending our tests on the usability of these three logos. Each logo requires image work and set up time in the laser-engraving tool and therefore I will not be offering any other logos for the SPY005.

    logo 1
    logo 2
    logo 3

    What you have purchased that is truly unique is a complicated flashlight that was precision machined on a vertical machining center. The body itself required 2 hours to machine. If you were to compare that to a more complicated and time consuming part on a flashlight like the Surefire M6 you would find that the spy required an order of magnitude more machining time. This difference is not due to the high-end machines that Surefire uses but rather to the type of machining. Namely turning work verses mill work. You do not typically see VMC machined 3D contoured parts in consumer products because of the cost/time required. It was a labor of love, please enjoy it and please use it.

    The SPY is water resistant. It can be used in the rain but later you should take the battery cap off to let it dry out if any water gets inside.

    The polarity is shown on the PCB and it has built in electronic polarity protection. When you take the battery cover off you can get some o-ring lube on your fingers, please re-lube the o-ring from time to time or the cap will get more difficult to replace. When you press the release pin the springs eject the cap off the back of the light. If you put the cap on without batteries in the light it is difficult to get the cap back off. You will have to pull on it while simultaneously pushing on the release pin.

    While the batteries are out of the SPY do NOT turn the knob or it might disengage from the internal micro rotary switch. It is likely that you will not realize this problem has occurred till you go to turn the light on and notice that the knob only turns two clicks. As the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy plainly states, “Don't Panic!” As long as you do not try to force the switch back it will not suffer any ill effects. To fix the problem, simply remove the batteries and wiggle the knob till it disengages from the switch and then turn the knob gently to the full off position. Put in the battery that is adjacent to the knob and while pushing the battery in against the PCB with your finger, wiggle the knob till it re-engages with the switch. Caution; do not push or twist with much force, it will damage the knob. You can now put the light back together.

    The light was sized for primary batteries. However many rechargeable battery brands and types do fit. It is up to you to make sure the batteries will fit before you purchase them. There is no low voltage cutoff built into the converter board.

    If you notice that power level 6 (high) and power level 5 are at the same brightness then it is time to replace the batteries. Always use two new batteries of the same brand when you replace the old batteries. Lithium primary batteries have been known to explode. Most strong aluminum flashlights with screw on tail caps are really a pipe bomb in disguise. However the battery cap on the SPY is designed to NOT hold back any significant amount of gas pressure. The release pin will deform and the battery cap will release the internal pressure from inside the light without creating a significant kinetic projectile.

    Intermittent use only on the high power setting
    Do not use the high power setting for more than one to two minutes at a time. If you feel the light starting to get warm, turn it down to level 5.

    This topic gets personal and philosophical real easy. I have had many a lengthy conversation with many CPF members about this issue. The reason this issue is so important is if you put the SPY on high power (1000mA to the LED) and leave it there for more than a minute or two it can fry the converter board. I love the high power of the SPY and use it all the time. Do not be afraid to use it, it will not hurt the LED. If you accidentally leave it on too long and fry the board . . . Do Not Panic! We will fix it.

    There is a copper heat sink directly connecting the IC to the side of the body in all the production units. But the technological challenge is that the SPY body is so small, thin and light that there is not sufficient mass to absorb, or outer surface area to dissipate, the thermal energy. The converter board does not self regulate to its thermal limit.

    Replacing the converter board in the field by the user is not trivial. However I plan to put together a video and instructions for doing it. I know many of you are going to take it apart anyway and this will save you a lot of trouble if you do attempt it. I said no tools were required but that is not true anymore. You will need long nose pliers and a knife. You will also need thermal grease.

    Power Levels

    The target power levels are (level 1 to level 6):
    (8), (35), (100), (250), (500), (1000)

    From my memory the actual levels measured were about:
    (7-11), (25-45), (50-100),( 225-260), (450,510), (1050-1090)

    Level 1 can be set lower but it gets touchy, 8mA was my lowest stable value. However, it can often be set to as low as 1-2mA

    I adjusted level 2 depending on what the level 3 reading was. Level 3, 4 and 5 deviations were always similar. That means if level 3 was at the lower end of its range (50mA) then so was level 4 and 5.

    Level 6 did not vary much.

    For the lights set at 600mA all the power levels are just a little over half of the above levels.

    Do not pull on the knob, it will not come off, I have tried many times with all of my strength and have never gotten one to come off. However, if you pull on it, it may get loose. Flicking the bic is OK. You can spin it on and off all day long. It will not damage the light or switch in any way, so have at it.

    This light can come on in your pocket. In my experience I find mine has come on once every few months. It is always one of the lower power levels and does not get warm or consume much of the batteries. Never keep anything in your pocket with the SPY.

    Do not let people look into the light and turn it on.

    Assembly and Disassembly
    In the pictures below of the PCB you can see the IC heat sync sticking up off the board just beside the IC (low black square). It is a copper wire and it is bent during the assembly to touch the side of the body. One of the PCBs has the IC potted with white epoxy.

    Please look at the PCB pictures and watch the video of the assembly process before you attempt to take the light apart.

    1) use sticky rubber pad to remove the lens ring
    2) take lens and reflector and lens o-ring out
    3) use sticky rubber pad to remove the head.
    4) carefully wipe all the thermal past off the LED heat sync
    5) use knife to bend IC heat sync away from the body
    6) take batteries out and use long nose pliers to bend PCB retaining wire back away from body
    7) configure LED pointing at knob and slide it through the body
    8) disassembly of light voids the warranty

    The video pretty much says it all. I would like to add that the LED heat sync has to be inserted in the body so that the base of the emitter dome is in the same plane as the edge of the body. If it is not the head will not screw down far enough. Be careful that the LED wires are not under the seat in the body that the LED heat sync fits into. If you have trouble, call me.

    The Spy comes with a six-month warranty. Replacement parts and service will be available for several years. The shipping and insurance cost to return a defective light to me is your responsibility. I will fix and return the light to you.

    The body on the left is black and the one on the right is natural.

    edited 12-17-2005

    A short video demonstrating battery cap use.

    With the Downboy driver you can use rechargeable batteries. The caveat is that you should use batteries with over-discharge protection circuitry built into them.

    For two primary cells, the Downboy falls out of regulation near the end of the battery’s life and therefore provides an accurate battery level meter. This is due to the fact that with the SPY you can read the battery level, so to speak, by checking the number of upper levels that are at the same brightness!

    The Downboy driver also has reverse battery polarity protection and sports PCB masking that clearly labels the resistors that drive each power level.

    CAD pics of micro lanyard-loop attachment point.

    This is a short video demonstrating the use of the SPY. Many people have asked if it is easy to turn the SPY off and on quickly. Well the answer is yes, it is very fast. In fact it is faster than most other lights I own. What you are about to see in the video is not hard to learn. It only took me a couple days to master it once I thought to try it. Look closely and you will see that I am spinning the switch with my finger from the off position through all the levels to level 6 (hi) in one motion.

    Please note that the spy in the video is the latest design but it still has the old smooth chrome knob. It does have the new electronics that do not flash between settings. The video is not particularly good at showing the different light levels on the SPY because there is no way to freeze the exposure on my camcorder. You will, however, be able to see that the top two levels do not differ much. We are changing the levels on the next rev of the board.

    The file is large (8MB) and if you would, please right click and select "save to my desktop", so that it is only downloaded once.

    Battery Spring
    To replace the battery spring if it falls out, put the bottom half (end closest to the release pin opening) in first by twisting the spring in a direction that makes the coil smaller.

    O-rings should be kept lubricated. I use Nyogel 7606. It is amazing stuff.

    O-ring size:
    Tailcap - Size 020, 1” English Size

    Problems First and foremost, if your light acts up you need to replace the batteries with two brand new primary lithium batteries - preferably Surefire. Make sure there is no moisture inside the light. To do this open the light and set it in a warm place for 12 hours. A good place is on top of your computer monitor. If these steps do not remedy the problem please contact Cool Fall Inc.


    Last edited by Data; 06-03-2016 at 02:11 PM. Reason: live document

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