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Thread: Seeking DIY HID Information to make big@ss light!

  1. #1

    Default Seeking DIY HID Information to make big@ss light!

    Hello All,
    I have been an avid reader of the forums for a while, and a lifetime flashaholic(no kidding, been buying flashlights since I was like 4) so I was extremely excited to find a forum for other people like me.

    Here is my situation. I am looking to make the most impractical (without going full blown generator/trailor searchlight-still battery even if the battery is a backpack full of batteries) HID spotlight. I have been looking for the highest power HID possible, and have only been able to find a 70W HID system from pyramid technologies for about $250 (bulb & ballast), but I want something bigger. Anybody with information on lamp assemblies (reflector/bulb, etc.) or hid systems would be greatly appreciated. I recently got to see a nighthunter in action, and I want something that will bury it in throwing capability. Any direction would be helpful.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Flashaholic* lotsalumens's Avatar
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    Default Re: Seeking DIY HID Information to make big@ss light!

    Megadiy,

    Sounds like we have a similar interest. I have been on the same quest for an impractical superlight for a while. I briefly worked on making a 750w xenon arc aviation light portable but gave up on it. Having done a 50w mod to a Thor 15mcp (good throw and very bright), I thought the Pyramid 70w might be the next step in that direction so I ordered one a month or so ago along with a single ended bulb. Unfortunately it is far from ideal in this application. The light emitting portion of a 70w HID bulb is so big (size of a grape), that in an 8" or so reflector, much of it is not it the focal point. The result is a big wash of light, and much less throw than even a regular 35w automotive HID bulb in the same reflector (I've tried both).

    Also that particular bulb/ballast combo takes a long time to warm up. You turn it on and it is very dim for quite a while. Automotive HIDs are designed to reach full brightness much faster for obvious reasons. Lastly after switching off it needs to cool for a few seconds before the arc can restrike. Overall not a great solution for a handheld searchlight. Much better for its intended use as a portable floodlight. I really see why xenon short arcs are used in higher powered searchlights, even though they may not be as efficient as metal halide bulbs. Having all the light generated from a tiny point source right at the focal point makes a huge difference in the ability of a reflector to efficiently "throw" light.


    cfb

  3. #3

    Default Re: Seeking DIY HID Information to make big@ss light!

    Any ideas on where to get something close to the 175W bulb that the megaray uses?

  4. #4

    Default Re: Seeking DIY HID Information to make big@ss light!

    these can be found online as replacement lamps for digital projectors ... very expensive and they use expensive lens optical path systems as well

    e-bay is the best place to get bulbs cheaper ... search stage and studio lights and you might find deals on 175 -250 watt hmi - hti bulbs ...these can use an ordinary reflector but still need a specialized ballast and inverter though

  5. #5

    Default Re: Seeking DIY HID Information to make big@ss light!

    I know this is not an HID, but I have been reading a lot about "The Sleeper" using an aircraft landing light. That thread mysteriously [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/confused.gif[/img] halted though a while back, december I think, but I did some more looking along those lines and found a 1000W 115V Sealed Beam Landing light (GE 4555). Anybody have any info on that one? How about the company selling the landing light hid conversion kits (www.aerovisions.com/hid/). They sell a kit for $535 I think, but they don't rate the HID in terms of Watts or anything to compare it with.
    There aren't enough hours in the day to work, sleep eat, and scour the internet for 23.5 hours searching for the ultimate flashlight..... [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

  6. #6
    Flashaholic* lotsalumens's Avatar
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    Default Re: Seeking DIY HID Information to make big@ss light!

    If you look at the aerovisions product page it appears that their products are based on standard automotive HID systems.


    cfb

  7. #7

    Default Re: Seeking DIY HID Information to make big@ss light!

    What about using a metal halide light? You can find those bulbs all day on ebay, and the ballasts aren't too expensive. I found some bulbs that go up to 5000W, I know that powering it isn't practical at all, but something around a 1000W seems possible, and it would be more efficient than a halogen. It would be tricky to get a good reflector for it, but it seems possible. how do these compare with HID/HMI/HTI lights? Anybody tried this before?

  8. #8
    Flashaholic* lotsalumens's Avatar
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    Default Re: Seeking DIY HID Information to make big@ss light!

    p.s. As java man mentioned those Cermax xenon arc modules like the Megaray uses do turn up on ebay fairly frequently. Helps to bookmark a search and check regularly. I've been looking into all that stuff for a while now. Been wondering if the optics from a cheap telescope couldn't be re-purposed to make a homemade megaray. Would take a lot of tweaking with focus, cooling, etc but it could be interesting. Anyway I'd love to see someone make a super light based on something like that, so I wish you luck with this!


    cfb

  9. #9

    Default Re: Seeking DIY HID Information to make big@ss lig

    You're looking at the wrong type of HID bulbs if you can't find anything over 75 Watts. What you want is something like these:

    http://www.atlantalightbulbs.com/ecart/10Browse.asp

    Power up to 4,000 Watts available.

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