Build Thread - Custom Running Headlamp

Rekkie

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Oct 14, 2010
Messages
53
Hi All,

Thought I'd share my headlamp after a recent comment to a Thread. I'll make it a quick read. :)

Some background: I run quite a few Ultra trail marathons amongst all my other adventures so I'm constantly on the search for better gear etc. I basically started my crusade because I felt that no commercial headlamp ticks all the boxes for me and I decided to build my own.

Requirements I had:
  • As small as physically possible
  • As bright a possible for the physical size
  • Long runtime at an "acceptable" level for running through an entire night, possibly multiple nights (Efficiency)
  • Flexible battery usage: I wanted the freedom to use any Li-Ion battery and any any number of the depending on my needs. (1x18650, 1x26650, 2x, 3x, etc.)
  • As weatherproof/waterproof as possible.

After some some time on Ol'Google and a love-making session with my calculator I decided on the following parts:
  • 3xXP-L2 LEDs
  • Carclo 10507 optics T
  • Taskled L-flex driver
  • Wired battery pack(s)

I tried to design the light body to provide as best cooling as possible, but knowing I won't be able to cool the light at it highest level...roughly 15W. Initially I was hoping to make it myself on the lathe at home, but I simply didn't have the time, so I opted to have it made by a engineering shop. There's a chap there that makes custom vapes so he was all to happy to take it on. Problem is I had to make 5 to justify the cost, so I decided to market it to friends (fellow Ultra runners) by giving it a personal touch.

Anyways, a picture is worth a thousand words, so here we go:

3D model of the body:
aNjy2DkLoU9jcMdQ6

47845405602_467813d80a_b.jpg
[/URL]IMG_3698 by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]
47845405532_5a5967ab3e_b.jpg
[/URL]IMG_3699 by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]

First Cuts:
47845406162_2bb41f8a6e_k.jpg
[/URL]IMG_4264 by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]

After Anodising and tapping:
40931041803_d4db3adac0_h.jpg
[/URL]IMG_5468 by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]

Holes cut for wiring etc:
47845404012_a05accd876_k.jpg
[/URL]D1742571-A650-4E45-BF58-5476504EA939 by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]
47845402432_65433d5613_k.jpg
[/URL]A2A023C1-D9C6-4B68-8F71-7408BB12D6C8 by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]

Parts going in:
47845400792_217de67229_k.jpg
[/URL]2DEF40B5-5910-4FE0-B3DC-DFA122314045 by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]

And Done:
47845401542_3a88ed0392_k.jpg
[/URL]8EC79582-40B7-4335-8A90-18BA6B8D7C55 by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]

Personal touch for friend who bought one:
47845401712_ead2ed2680_k.jpg
[/URL]87508BBB-7FE2-411E-A439-595DA1D6D81E by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]

Size Comparison to an Olight HS2:
46981456955_5db75bf47a_k.jpg
[/URL]F869F807-6AAD-44D7-8F7D-E7D2FB127824 by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]

My setup I used for a 100 Miler. 1x 21700 battery I kept in my hydration pack, and I mounted the Light to back of my cap to safe 10 grams on the strap :laughing:
46981433905_23d9af1da1_k.jpg
[/URL]IMG_6626 by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]
46981455745_a3a14e7513_k.jpg
[/URL]1648179F-E935-4594-8FC7-988DAE217AA9 by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]

And last but not least, Beamshots, taken on a Cricket field (white wall in the distance is 120 meters away):

Control:
40931055383_787fcab5b8_k.jpg
[/URL]P3063022 by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]

Level 1:
40931057363_b684dc7c48_k.jpg
[/URL]P3063023 by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]

Level 2:
47897489811_c1f759c113_k.jpg
[/URL]P3063024 by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]

Level 3:
47108184934_4218248456_k.jpg
[/URL]P3063025 by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]

Level 4:
47897496591_469d71f424_k.jpg
[/URL]P3063026 by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]

Level 5 (+/- 1500Lm):
46981455095_1d2e681be5_k.jpg
[/URL]P3063027 by Eduan Adams, on Flickr[/IMG]

Hope you enjoy. Q & A welcome.
 

Rekkie

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Oct 14, 2010
Messages
53
Ok, so battery pack: I 3D printed a small casing for a single 21700 cell and hard wired it. I didn’t care much for looks as the battery is purely functional for me. Simply duct taped it to make it sweatproof. There’s not much more to it really. https://flic.kr/p/2fZHGkv
 
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Derek Dean

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 14, 2006
Messages
2,399
Location
Monterey, CA
Fantastic job, Eduan. Small, simple, elegant, and beautifully finished. I especially appreciated the running man graphic on the front, a very professional touch that just screams out to become the logo for your new custom headlamp business: )

Thanks for taking the time to share your journey. Where there's a will, there's a way!
 

Rekkie

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Oct 14, 2010
Messages
53
Thanks Derek. I was pleasantly surprised how well everything turned out. What started as a simple project for my own use quickly snowballed and turned into a decent headlamp.

Yup, definitely holding on to the logo! 🙂
 

eh4

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Oct 18, 2011
Messages
2,002
What kind of weight with various batteries + head gear?, also what max and min lumens/hours does it get?
 

Rekkie

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Oct 14, 2010
Messages
53
What kind of weight with various batteries + head gear?, also what max and min lumens/hours does it get?

Weight of the headlamp unit alone is about 50grams. The battery depends on what setup you use, as do runtime, as do lumens based on which current and UI the Lflex is set to.

Currently set at 3500mah (Leds in parallel) and in UIBQ and multimode, so light output as follows:

L1: ~27 Lumen
L2: ~205 Lumen
L3: ~391 Lumen
L4: ~758 Lumen
L5: ~1387 Lumen

Values are theoretical(calculated) OTF.
 

Rekkie

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Oct 14, 2010
Messages
53
Difference in price/unit between 5&10 was so little that it didn’t warrant the need to machine more. Machine costs for making just one housing =~$100, 5=~$35 and 10=~$30, so opted for the 5. The bulk of the initial costs was in making the housing as I couldn’t machine it myself. Also didn’t want to make 10 and then sit with a handful of units I couldn’t sell.

Wish I could afford the Pocket CNC then I could make them to order basically.
 
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Abba-Ka-Dabra!!

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Jan 16, 2020
Messages
1
Is there ANY possibility of talking you into doing another run of these? The whole reason I joined this forum was to design/bid out/search/purchase the perfect running headlamp and sir, I believe you did it. If you are unwilling to produce anymore of them, would you be willing to share the shopping list and cad file? You did an EXCELLENT job man. I don't mind paying you for a way to build it myself. Thanks either way!
(BTW: I'm FAIRLY certain you could find quite a few people willing to pay $50 for the metal lamp and wire coming out of it. No headband, no battery, and no connector on the wire so that custom battery solutions could be worked by each purchaser. Maybe charge extra to finish it out into a "total" headlamp? You really should try man, you've got a great solution to a vexing problem saturated with lies from penny-pinching companies and companies that charge such obscene amounts that one would assume they cut no corners but surprise, surprise....
 

Rekkie

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Oct 14, 2010
Messages
53
Is there ANY possibility of talking you into doing another run of these? The whole reason I joined this forum was to design/bid out/search/purchase the perfect running headlamp and sir, I believe you did it. If you are unwilling to produce anymore of them, would you be willing to share the shopping list and cad file? You did an EXCELLENT job man. I don't mind paying you for a way to build it myself. Thanks either way!
(BTW: I'm FAIRLY certain you could find quite a few people willing to pay $50 for the metal lamp and wire coming out of it. No headband, no battery, and no connector on the wire so that custom battery solutions could be worked by each purchaser. Maybe charge extra to finish it out into a "total" headlamp? You really should try man, you've got a great solution to a vexing problem saturated with lies from penny-pinching companies and companies that charge such obscene amounts that one would assume they cut no corners but surprise, surprise....

Sorry it's been a while since I logged onto CPF.

You're welcome to make one for yourself. The ZAR/US$ exchange rate doesn't make it viable for me to sell them. Also the chap at the machine shop I used no longer works there so I'll have to track down another place who's willing. I'll share the 3D file. Just send me a PM.
 
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