Battery fit issue on new Zebralight SC600w Mk IV HI

Flashlike

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just ordered a new ZL SC600w Mk IV HI 18650 XHP35 Neutral White flashlight.
I got all excited to check it out so I inserted a fully charged Tenergy protected 18650 cell.
Humm...too long and the tail cap would not tighten all the way so the flashlight wouldn't operate. :mecry:

So I ordered a couple of the Zebralight brand 18650 cells from their website. When they arrived I
charged them up and tried one of them. Too long. :faint:
Zebralight's website says they are 67.2mm overall length but I have an accurate electronic calipers and measured 67.34mm.

I have a NON-protected 3100mAh Panasonic flat-top 18650 that BARELY fit. It measures 65.10mm in length.

I've heard that some of the Zebralight flashlights are very particular in the batteries they accept and now I believe it.
I would prefer to use protected cells, but it looks like I don't have much choice.
It would be nice if ZL would offer an optional, slightly deeper tail cap that would accommodate protected cells.

Is everyone else using NON-protected cells in their SC600 MK IV flashlights?
 

Flashlike

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Just non protected cells that are high drain work. The red cell on their website works best

If that is the case, then in my opinion Zebralight should say something on their website under the flashlight description that only non-protected cells will fit.

EDIT: I stand corrected. I just read the flashlight description details on their website and it says "Battery: One 18650 size (i.e. unprotected, 65.0-65.2 mm long) 3.6-4.35V li-ion rechargeable". So I guess that answers my question.

I still think it would be great if they would offer an optional slightly deeper tail cap to accommodate protected cells, but I doubt that will happen.
 
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Lou Minescence

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If that is the case, then in my opinion Zebralight should say something on their website under the flashlight description that only non-protected cells will fit.

Agreed. It’s a buzz killer when you get something and discover you needed to buy something else too. Yes they spell out the battery specific size in the description but that can be easily overlooked.
Its a nice light. Just get 2 of the red unprotected batteries and your good to go.
 

Flashlike

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Agreed. It’s a buzz killer when you get something and discover you needed to buy something else too. Yes they spell out the battery specific size in the description but that can be easily overlooked.
Its a nice light. Just get 2 of the red unprotected batteries and your good to go.

Yes, Lour Minescence that is what happened to me. I indeed overlooked the battery specific information in the description on Zebralight's website. It definitely is a nice light and I'll order the red unprotected batteries for it.

In the past I've always stuck with protected rechargeable cells. I guess non protected cells aren't necessarily less safe to use than protected cells as long as a person uses common sense and reasonable caution when charging them. And with the newer electronic chargers that continuously monitor and measure the current battery charge state during the charging process they shouldn't get overcharged. I always keep an eye on my rechargeable batteries while they're being charged and remove them from the charger as soon as they are charged up.
Although one nice thing about protected batteries is that they shouldn't get undercharged (i.e. overly depleted).
 

Johnno

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I didn't buy the Mk IV HI, but just received the SC600w Mk IV Plus I had ordered today. Was surprised to find out that a button top unprotected Samsung Q30 cell wouldn't work in it - seems it's just a millimeter or 2 too long. Those pogo pins look cool, but definitely are more limiting as to battery options. Guess I prefer springs.
 
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Tachead

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I didn't buy the Mk IV HI, but just received the SC600w Mk IV Plus I had ordered today. Was surprised to find out that a button top unprotected Samsung Q30 cell wouldn't work in it - seems it's just a millimeter or 2 too long. Those pogo pins look cool, but definitely are more limiting as to battery options. Guess I prefer springs.
Theses lights only run on unprotected flat top cells. A regular 30Q will work fine.
 

Flashlike

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Theses lights only run on unprotected flat top cells. A regular 30Q will work fine.

I looked up the specifications on the Samsung unprotected flat top 30Q battery and it lists the length as 64.85mm (±0.15mm). That would be too long to fit in the MK IV.

EDIT :oops: :stupid: Correction -- the 30Q should work fine. Sorry!
 
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Johnno

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Theses lights only run on unprotected flat top cells. A regular 30Q will work fine.

Yup, found that out. Is somewhat disappointing though as the pogo pins seem to impose stricter limitations as to what will/won't work as to cells - my older SC600's that use springs are all fine with both button tops and flat cells.
 

Tachead

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Yup, found that out. Is somewhat disappointing though as the pogo pins seem to impose stricter limitations as to what will/won't work as to cells - my older SC600's that use springs are all fine with both button tops and flat cells.

Yeah, it was highly criticized when they first made the change. Remember though all OEM cells are flat top. It is aftermarket companies that add the PTC's and button tops. All you have to do is buy plain old OEM cells and you're gtg.
 
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noboneshotdog

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Sony VTC6 fit perfectly if you are looking for options. I have the MKIV HI w no issues at all with this cell.
 

Tachead

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Sony VTC6 fit perfectly if you are looking for options. I have the MKIV HI w no issues at all with this cell.

Yep, Sony VTC6, Sony VTC5A, LG MJ1, and Sanyo GA should all fit perfectly. I have read of people using the Samsung 30Q and 35E without issues as well even though they are a tiny bit out of spec. Honestly I bet almost any flat top unprotected cell would work even if it wasn't ideal.
 

Sproing

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Sorry to hear the battery fitment issues on your ZL, Flashlike. Zebralight actually emailed me when I ordered their branded protected cells would not fit in their MKIII and I guess MK IV lights (I haven't received my MK IV but I assume the pogo pins are the same as my MKIII). I told them I was looking for shorter protected cells for other applications but it was nice they contacted me. Unfortunate to hear that you did not get the same warning from them when ordering.

As others have said I can confirm Sony VTC, Sanyo 18650GA and Samsung 30Q flat tops work well but they were with my MKIII with pogo pins and from their specs it does not look like they have changed for the MKIV. They are all great. I personally use 30Q's on my Zebralights as they're good cells for high drain.
 

Lurveleven

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I wasn't aware of this issue before I saw this thread. I guess Zebralight will do anything to make their lights shorter, previously they could take up to 69 mm cells. The shorter length of the lights comes from the reduced space for the battery. Is a 4% shorter light so important that you shouldn't be able to use your existing batteries and be highly limited in you battery options? I think this was an stupid decision. I have a lot of Zebralights and was about to renew my selection, but with this design choice I'm staying away until they go back to supporting protected cells like they did before. If short length is so important, why doesn't they make a light for 18500 batteries? If possible, then the head and body should be separable so people could choose the body they wanted.
 

ingokl

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I exactly had the same thoughts and was not happy. But as far as I understood it now, ZL did not choose the pogo pins to make the light a few millimeter shorter (this was just a nice side effect) but to generate more output and less heat (especially in the new high drain 10 to 18 Watt Led lights). Apparently the pins have a much lower electrical resistance than the springs.
And after this basic decision (athough for me personnaly a few less lumens for more flexibility would have been ok) they had the choice to support EITHER almost all standard flat-top non-protected cells OR only a certain limited range of protected cells, as these vary in length quite a bit depending on the manufacturer.
And with the sophisticated protection circuit within the light... I think the non-protected route makes more sense to me and is still more flexible regarding cell choice (with the all pogo pin design).
 
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Lurveleven

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ingokl, you are correct, I did a little more searching and found this in the description on one of the older lights with an XHP50:
"This flashlight draws a very high current from the batteries. You MUST use unprotected 18650s capable of 8A or more, and from name brand manufactures. Multiple pogo-pin battery contacts, rather than springs, are used in order to keep up with the high current draws and to consistently maintain an extremely low resistance over a long period of time. Unfortunately, only flat top unprotected 18650 batteries up to 65.2mm are compactible with the pogo-pin contacts. Frosted lenses have to be used in order to smooth out beam artifacts from quad die LEDs. The brightness can be perceived to be less compared to throwy lights with the same output."

I'll guess I will just stick with what I have, apparently the LEDs hasn't increased much in efficiency in recent years, you just have new LEDs that handles more power. Too bad because I really wanted a SC64c, but I see that uses pogo pins as well even though it doesn't have extreme output on the same scale as the other new lights.

Where will they set the limit for power consumption? I'm not sure it is wise to use so much power in such small lights.
 

easilyled

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I presume IMR flat-top 18650s work if they're the correct length and can deliver the correct current?
I have quite a few IMR flat-top 18650s that are significantly shorter than my protected AWs and they claim to deliver a high current, 10A at least.
 

Budman231

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I have the 600w mkIII and discovered this as well. I will say these lights are 100% worth buying the right cells. The quality and function far outweighs the inconvenience of the unprotected cell purchase. These are super lights. You won't look back.
 
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