LED Replacement bulb problem.

TD-Horne

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I have a heavy 3 D cell flashlight that the woman counselors like to use when walking their safety rounds at night. I suspect the weight is why they like it for that work. When a replacement LED bulb is installed it sits back too far to be focused into a spot pattern. Night rounds are for camper safety and we all want the spotlight effect for lighting up any sign of an intruder. The flashlight had some sort of halogen or other truly bright bulb in it before. They must have been longer between the mounting flange and the tip of the bulb because the counselors really liked the strength of it's beam with the old bulb. So I'm back to asking for suggestions for a replacement LED bulb that will stick out further into the reflector and be as bright as possible.

The woman counselors love the other flashlight I loan for their use during night rounds every year. It's a 5 D cell Maglite. The replacement LED bulb fits in it just fine.

Tom Horne
 

Monocrom

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Is the 3D cell light also a Maglite model?
If so, might be best to get the replacement bulb from Maglite to ensure a proper fit.
 

alpg88

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without seeing it, or at least knowing what light it is, no one can recommend anything useful, pics would help a lot.
 

TD-Horne

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Is the 3D cell light also a Maglite model?
If so, might be best to get the replacement bulb from Maglite to ensure a proper fit.
I have found a brand name on the tail cap. It is a KEL-LITE # 014239 D Cell Large Head KL 3Cell model. Does anyone know what LED bulb would fit that?

Tom Horne
 

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Monocrom

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Might be best to message bykfixer.
Fellow member on CPF. He'd likely be your best bet as he knows quite a bit about Kel-lite.
 

xxo

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Kel-Lites have fixed focus, so it might be difficult to find a LED drop-in that will work. You might be able to use washers as shims to move the led forward into focus.

Another option: replace the Kel-Lites with LED 3D cell Maglite flashlights - these are not too expensive and since the Kel-lites have a bit of collector value, you might be able to sell them and recoup most of the cost of the new Mags.
 

TD-Horne

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Kel-Lites have fixed focus, so it might be difficult to find a LED drop-in that will work. You might be able to use washers as shims to move the led forward into focus.

Another option: replace the Kel-Lites with LED 3D cell Maglite flashlights - these are not too expensive and since the Kel-lites have a bit of collector value, you might be able to sell them and recoup most of the cost of the new Mags.
Well that's an encouraging thought. I only provide 2 of the heavy flashlights for night rounds because only 2 people do it at a time. One for the boys area and 1 for the girls area. If I replace this Kel-Lite I will probably just buy another 5 cell Maglite. It still won't do any harm to see if I can find an LED bulb to fit it though.

Tom Horne
 

alpg88

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kel lite used regular pr bulb, there are direct led pr replacements, but they are not too bright. there are many on the market, some are ok some crappy, but they are all worse then stock incandescent bulb, that reflector works best with a bulb, with leds it is a big hit and miss, get 3 cell magnum star bulb for a maglite, they will be better than any led in that reflector, it'll fit right in.
 
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ABTOMAT

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I don't have direct experience with many PR LED drop-ins, but I've seen pictures of some that were pretty bright. Regarding the focus, if you find one too far FORWARD, the shim washers mentioned further up the thread are a valid solution. A company making custom xenon bulbs in the '80s sold them with a stack of shims. If the LED you have is too far back you can't move it forward, since it basically headspaces off the shoulder in the reflector. Or just go with the Magnum Star bulb.

As a user flashlight a new Mag LED would probably be more practical in the long run. That Kel-Lite dates to the mid '70s. Be gentle with the bulb changing--reflectors for these things don't grow on trees any more.
 

Monocrom

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If we're talking a replacement 3D-cell light that uses an LED, I can absolutely recommend the 3D-cell Defiant model. Defiant is an in-house Home Depot brand (like Husky). 500 rated lumens. One setting. Very good side-spill. Extremely bright hot-spot that really reaches out an impressive distance. Picture a non-focusable 3D Maglite model. But with shallow checkering, a reverse-clicky tailcap switch, and actually a much easier tailcap assembly for swapping out dead batteries with new ones. Best part: Under $23.oo w/ the batteries included!

I bought mine a few months back when they were $19.oo each. Still a bargain at the new price.
 

alpg88

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^^^ those are build like tanks, they have a very good, large reflector and are very moddable, i actually have modded one for my friend, unstalled sst40, and 5A fet driver, judco 10A switch, and made a custom battery from 2 x26650 cells and a pvc pipe, even included 3A usb C charging circuit. The way it comes it is pretty good, but my mod took it to entirely different level. it still works with 3xd cells just no where near as bright.
 

yellow

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I do not buy that whole story!
Who "wants" a big bulky crap oft equipment to patrol anywhere?
The only reason that makes sense is, when those conseilors regularly have to whack heads with their glowing batons.

This explanation makes MUCH more sense: they do not know better.
How does that sound?
;)
You provide the lights?
so they do not have to care for batteries, charging, and so on?

Then: Think of the runtime and brightness needed, and if the users will only be able to handle an on-off single mode light, or maybe one with two brightness levels.

And then lend them something in the 1*18650 size of lights.
Possibly 2*18650

No way anyone wants back to toting the useless heavy brick around, when the modern, smaller, lighter light does the job.

For smacking heads, then some additional batons ...
 

TD-Horne

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The only reason that makes sense is, when those counselors regularly have to whack heads with their glowing batons.
Their had been a few attempted sexual assaults. What the would be assailants didn't anticipate was the presence of male councilors on the staff that are more then willing to go fist to fist with anyone who is a threat to their campers or fellow counselors. 2 of the would be attackers who were about 18 ended up with serious beat downs. In one case a parent of the assailant came back with the assailant and county deputy sheriffs. When the deputies found out how he came to get beaten prior to fleeing the scene they shook the hands of the 2 counselors with the skinned knuckles and put the cuffs on that want to be thug. The third one was only 16 and got counselors sitting on their arms, legs, and back until the United States Park Service Protective Ranger arrived with a shotgun in hand. None of those outcomes keep the women on camp staff from being nervous about the possibility of attack by a more physically powerful assailant since 3 campers had been attacked. 1 of our camps is located in urban interface area and previous behavior by a few people seem to have made the woman counselors edgy about night counselor duty. That camp may be relocated to a much more rural area and even though I'll probably have to do a lot of repair and improvement on that facilities electrical system I don't think I mind at all.

I believe that the truth is that they want something that they could wack an intruder assailant with but they don't want to admit that, perhaps even to themselves. I found this out by simply leaving the 5 D cell Maglite in the staff room while I was on a break. Being an electrician I was the volunteer maintenance person for that session. When I went looking for it later that night I was told that the night counselor on the girls end of camp had taken it to use. After that night the woman counselors didn't want to use any other light. They all said they loved how bright it is but I think they were scared and didn't want to wimp out in front of the rest of the staff. I didn't want to make their lives unpleasant by asking what the "real" reason they preferred that light was. I simply left it for them to use.

Now that you made me think about this again I will try to get the Camp Program Committee to have night counselors work in pairs with radios that will be monitored in the staff room. The camps have a well prepared plan for fire, severe weather, and a missing camper. I think we need to add an intruder response section to that plan.

I guess I should check on that light when they unpack the camp equipment this year to find out if I ever converted it to LED.

Tom Horne
 

aznsx

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I will try to get the Camp Program Committee to have night counselors work in pairs with radios that will be monitored in the staff room.
Radios can be a very powerful / effective tool. I'm of course not familiar with the particulars of the circumstances, but that sounds like a great idea to me. A lot of potential value in terms of peace of mind and safety at a relatively modest cost.
 

bykfixer

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Tom,
One major issue for LED replacements in a once incandecent flashlight is the shape of the LED itself. Most of the LED replacements that fit in a PR base cause a donut hole to appear due to the LED itself being a 180 degree light producer.
84674416-C9CE-42E9-A883-F541B45062EF.jpeg

Light cannot reach back onto the reflector like a light bulb can.
113B8B33-7628-475C-B726-52865D71D965.jpeg

See how a bulb produces light all the way back to the flange.

Stacking washers can help but with a regular reflector there may not be enough adjustment to solve the issue and still hold the bulb down

18BED293-32C8-4A23-A8E3-1E2E4A1E7EE2.jpeg

The cam on the Maglite reflector was devised to make it so washers are not required. To the right is a Kel-Lite type reflector. So the Maglite can move foward enough to eliminate most if not all of the donut hole.

6992A34C-3E83-4651-B3EA-0AC9F69BCBA8.jpeg

This dude is a possible solution.

 

TD-Horne

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Tom,
One major issue for LED replacements in a once incandecent flashlight is the shape of the LED itself. Most of the LED replacements that fit in a PR base cause a donut hole to appear due to the LED itself being a 180 degree light producer.
View attachment 41014
Light cannot reach back onto the reflector like a light bulb can.
View attachment 41015
See how a bulb produces light all the way back to the flange.

Stacking washers can help but with a regular reflector there may not be enough adjustment to solve the issue and still hold the bulb down

View attachment 41016
The cam on the Maglite reflector was devised to make it so washers are not required. To the right is a Kel-Lite type reflector. So the Maglite can move foward enough to eliminate most if not all of the donut hole.

View attachment 41017
This dude is a possible solution.

Thank you so much. I ordered the 4.5 volt version which only has one LED on each face. Since I'm an Amazon Prime customer it only cost $10.59 with the sales tax. If you hear the hallelujah chorus being sung in Takoma Park Maryland that will be me if it works.

Tom Horne
 
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