LED Lights Using "Spent" batteries?

TheMechanic

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Aug 13, 2002
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Oregon, USA
What LED lights are available that will run on "spent" batteries from my incandescents - AA and 123?

I seem to recall a thread wherein someone stated that one of the PT LED lights would run on used batts from his/her Surge, but are there any others?

Hate throwing away 123s (or even AAs) if there's usable power left in them!!
 

PhotonRanger

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Jan 30, 2002
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NC
My Opalec MiniMag has never seen a new AA battery - it gets the old Surge batts and sucks 'em dry!
 

jbechto

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Jan 16, 2001
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Vista, CA 92084
Hi,

Here is a copy of my post on the "Brinkman Legend LX runtime" thread:

Hi Fellow Flashaholics,

I bought one at Wally World as well, but I never turned it on with the stock bulb.

I put the new 123a's into my camera bag & pulled the stock bulb, replacing it with a Nichia 6,400 white LED. I put old 123a's into it that my camera won't work well on any more. FREE LIGHT!!

With the 123a's at about 2.8 volts (where my camera usually starts slowing down) it starts slow (about 12 ma) and ramps up to 27 ma or so. It won't knock your eyes out, but it's a reasonable amount of light with a decent emission pattern and it seems to be going and going and going.....

I remember reading post about folks looking for a good LED flashlight to use up low 123a's. This could be it. When I get a chance, I'm ging to make up a 4 LED cluster to plug into it and see how that works out. Should be fun...I love making the most of those ridiculously expensive batteries! (I now have other family members saving their old camera batteries for me!)

After reading these posts, I went back and checked the Sanyo's that came with it. Both measure 3.238 volts...right up to snuff (whew! I was counting on using those in my camera to offset some of the $20 this light cost me {;-)

John
 

Starlight

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May 25, 2002
Messages
680
Location
Florida
People usually use "spent" batteries in a regulated light. The regulators are dc voltage or current converters that allow the battery to be discharged at a fairly constant rate. This gives you more even light output instead of a light that continually gets dimmer until you give up and replace the batteries.

A list of regulated lights would include: Arc LS (123 or AA), Arc AAA, opalec newbeam (usually put in a 2AA case), lambda and dat2zip's drop in mods (for 2AA cases), and lambda's drop in mod for the E1e surefire (123). I think there are others and surefire is nearly ready with the A2, which will also be a regulated light.
 

revolvergeek

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Feb 6, 2002
Messages
1,037
Location
Louisiana
Have to second lemlux here. I have 3 of Jbechto's 4 led bulbs ( all set for 6 volts, no idea what mA; one white, one green and one aqua) and have been VERY impressed with them.

I have the green in a Dorcy Cool Blue and it blows away any other LED light that I currently have (X5T, Tektite 300, Reactor, Attitude). The aqua is going to go in a Tec40 (will live in my briefcase), and the white lives in a waterproof 4D cell lantern that serves Hurricane duty.

Great guy to deal with and great bulbs.
 

ikendu

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Joined
Jun 30, 2001
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1,853
Location
Iowa
Ah... let us not forget the Infinity. I've used AAs from a wireless keyboard and from an alarm clock...all of which quit working on "dead" AAs. The Infinity shines brightly on those "dead" batteries!
 

lemlux

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 27, 2002
Messages
2,366
Location
San Diego
JBechto's modesty overlooked my favorite use of partially spent Alkaline AA's.

Buy a J Bechto 4 Nichia 6400 LED PR bulb. Ask him to optimize it for 40 mA per LED at 4.5 V and 48 mA per LED at 4.8 V. Run it in a 4AA light with a dummy with 3 fresh alkalines, 3 fresh lithiums, or 4 NiMHs. Also run it with 4 AA alkalines that have been run down to 1.2 V or less.

I have one of John's 4LED PR bulbs in a PT40, one in a Dorcy Boss, and one in a $2.99 Frostbite (Is that Garrity?? I forget.) They beat the pants off my 3-cell Lightwave 2000 and my 4 LED Commando Light, plus they finish off my alkaline AA's.
 

jbechto

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Jan 16, 2001
Messages
63
Location
Vista, CA 92084
Thank you Lemlux and Revolvergeek. I appreciate the kind words.

The FrostBrite is a Dorcy, the lens has a "frosted" area in front of the bulb that adds an interesting diffusion.

My favorite handheld, hands down, is the Dorcy "Boss" with 4-6,400's. (Remember the Turtle lights?) That multifaceted reflector and clear lens works great with the LED bulbs. You can get them in 4 AA and 3 D cell...as well as some others. I put a Luxeon in the 4 D cell, just cause it was an easy mod...what a light!..if a bit too big and heavy.

Of course, I have a few prototypes around here with more LEDs (usually siliconed in, after I screwed up the hole in the reflector)that are brighter, but the 4 LED seems to be a really nice balance of good usable light and long battery life. And the bulb still fits in any PR application without mods to the light!

John
 

Saaby

Flashaholic
Joined
Jun 17, 2002
Messages
7,447
Location
Utah
Originally posted by ikendu:
Ah... let us not forget the Infinity. I've used AAs from a wireless keyboard and from an alarm clock...all of which quit working on "dead" AAs. The Infinity shines brightly on those "dead" batteries!
<font size="2" face="Verdana, Arial">Alert! Check the batteries (individually) coming out of your wireless computer stuffs. I don't know how many other components and brands are effected but my dads computer uses a Logitec wireless mouse. Shortly after getting my Arc AAA the mosue betteries happened to die. Long story shorter: One battery was completely dead, one was more or less brand new.
 
D

**DONOTDELETE**

Guest
well how dead is it? how much longer does it have to run in your LS? did you know the ZTS battery tester can test dead 123's on the li coin cell test position? yup it can, and it won't hurt the meter either, the manufacturer said so, here;
http://www.candlepowerforums.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=6;t=000498#00 0000
you can test worn alk cells at the 1.2 volt nicad test point too on the ZTS.
(the Radioshack digital meter doesn't test 123s..just li coin cells)
 
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