LuxLuthor's Most Powerful Maglite Mods List

LuxLuthor

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Pete, using the 12" black tube with 1" I.D., and a thin layer of black foam at meter end to seal sensor in end works great. LOL....I cannibalized an old vacuum cleaner extension tube, and abraded the inside so there was a diffuse pattern coming through other end, as previously the shiny inside surface reflected artifacts.

Only thing is my preliminary "spot" readings at 1 meter of 64623 with a charged 14.4V pack (not the power supply yet) only gave about 450 Lux. The FM special Carley 43W in a 2p4s x 14670 (stock mag parts), only gave about 150 Lux.

Seeing that this LM631 scale can go up to 20,000 Lux, I think I should put it closer than a meter. To see the effect of the tube, holding the sensor outside of the tube with Carley only bumped it up to about 170 Lux.

I'm thinking I should find a distance where the 64458 at about 22V gives a reading of about 10,000 Lux, unless I get way too close. Maybe 0.5 meter? That will still leave Lux room on the meter for measuring 250W setups. It seems the most useful thing is to get a relative proportional, but objectively controlled setup...which we can then compare to the Hotrater spreadsheet, bulb manufacturer BL ratings at a specific voltage, etc.

I was talking with AWR, and also think it may be best to do most of the "light point" testing in just a plain KIU bipin holder which is how he did some of his tests...and then see how volt/amp/lux compares at a couple points when the new AW D Driver is used (still waiting on mine).
 
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LuxLuthor

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List will be undergoing some shakeups as some new bulbs and setups are tested. :naughty: Meanwhile here is a random set of Torch & MaxBlasters.

(Thumbnail)

 

LuxLuthor

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Getting close to updating my list with a number of new bulbs and setups. I was kind of stalling until AW came out with his regulated D Driver, but I believe that is a ways away.
 

nickz

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I am going to try and find what I consider "the sweet spot" for a bulb which I believe means a life of 10-20 hrs. I want to clearly establish the flash point of various bulbs, so that is no longer a mystery, nor have it be related to initial spike current, from some level of overcharged batteries, or from a variable series of resistance setups, NTC, etc.

I'm also planning on using the temp probe which came with my Fluke 179 to see actual temps inside of a FiveMega enclosed aluminum head with Borofloat lens. It tests up to 750° F, so I may need to drill a hole just large enough for the probe in a head to get accurate sampling. This would also allow me to see how much a layer of FiberFrax would insulate the KIU, wires, and hotdriver below the bulb.

I recognize this will likely involve sacrificing 3-4 bulbs of any particular bulb to get some accurate data points, and may subject AW's 4-D to more heat/current stress than he anticipates. To minimize that, I will start out with the lower 6V and WA bulbs before considering moving to the 50W and higher bulbs.

I'm thinking it would be good to do the run times in 30 - 120 min segments which would be a more realistic representation of how these bulbs would be used. Not to mention the fact that I am not going to want to sit, transfixed on a bulb and readings for 20 hours straight.

I want to try and standardize and control as many aspects as I can think of when setting this up, so it could be used in conjunction with AWR's Hotrater spreadsheet....perhaps leading to some adjustments, and ultimately becoming a reliable bulb reference, similar to the excellent work SilverFox has done with the battery run time curves.

Lux,

When establishing these numbers how long are you going to test a bulb at a given voltage? The reason I ask is that at one time I was convinced that you could run the ROP with 7 nimh cells and do just fine. What I ended up finding out is that after around 15 minutes of constant on time is bubl explosion. I have had this happen three times. The first time I thought it was maybe just a bad bulb. After the second time I was curious. After the third time, I was smart enough not to try it again. These bulbs completely shredded a nice reflector and chipped the inside of a UCL lense when they exploded so things were really moving when it came apart.
 

LuxLuthor

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Nick, you should see the "burial ground" of dead bulbs I have now. Amazingly, none of them have exploded, but I faithfully wear my Mr. Wizard goggles when doing the tests in this thread.

I start with the projected life that was taken from AWR's Hotrater spreadsheet to target a life of 10-15 hrs. Some bulbs are pretty close to what I have on those spreadsheets as "pending" on far right, others have little correlation.

Remember with my test platforms, I have virtually no resistance to blunt the voltage we use with various battery combinations that varies in the Mag setup. Remember that a fully charged NiMH cell will have a voltage of 1.4V, so your 7 x 1.4V=9.8V

Then, depending on what parts you are using, resistance fixes, etc., you need to take that into account in your setup, as more resistance of a stock mag will decrease the current delivered to the bulb at a given battery voltage.
 
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nickz

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Nick, you should see the "burial ground" of dead bulbs I have now. Amazingly, none of them have exploded, but I faithfully wear my Mr. Wizard goggles when doing the tests in this thread.

I start with the projected life that was taken from AWR's Hotrater spreadsheet to target a life of 10-15 hrs. Some bulbs are pretty close to what I have on those spreadsheets as "pending" on far right, others have little correlation.

Remember with my test platforms, I have virtually no resistance to blunt the voltage we use with various battery combinations that varies in the Mag setup. Remember that a fully charged NiMH cell will have a voltage of 1.4V, so your 7 x 1.4V=9.8V

Then, depending on what parts you are using, resistance fixes, etc., you need to take that into account in your setup, as more resistance of a stock mag will decrease the current delivered to the bulb at a given
battery voltage.

Lux,

I am well aware that the voltage is actually a bit higher. I was just quoting the nominal voltage of the pack. As far as resistance fixes, I have the mag switch fixes done but I have not done the tail spring fix done as when I built that particular light I had not seen a post about that being a problem. These lights popped around 2 or three years ago when I first got into mag hotwires.

My main point of bringing it up was simply to find out if you were just testing the bulbs for their highest possible voltage so we can use a hotdriver and get the most from our lights. I wanted to be sure that the tests were running for a decent amount of time before the information is stated as good to go. As I said, each of three of my bulbs failed at around 15 minutes of constant run time. What happened was first a slight dimming followed by a spectacular show of colors that ended with a poof. Each time, the bulb completely failed and shredded a reflector. After the first one happened I tried again in the same damaged reflector as at the time I didnt have a spare and I was using the light for photography. The third time was simply to see if I could repeat the results and it happened again. That was when I decided that I would no longer use that setup.

As a general note, each time the bulb failed the light was sitting on the tail cap pointing at the ceiling to bounce light back down on what I was photographing. I dont think this would have any bearing on the bulb failing but thought it was worth mentioning.

Don't take the first sentance the wrong way. I am not in any way insulting you or your intelligence. I admire the work you are doing for the better of the community. I have a great respect for that. I am just interested to find out if the same thing could happen at different voltages. Voltages higher than a nominal 7.2 but lower than nominal 8.4 might result in similar results in the same amount of time or a bit longer.

Thanks again for the work you are putting into the bulb tests. This will come in real handy when we have a hotdriver setup. :twothumbs .
 

LuxLuthor

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Nick, I just took readings and moved up to next reported voltage step. I didn't pause, as I did not want to put additional run time stresses as the voltage increased. The first stage was to detect the Lux, Amps, & heat at various voltage levels, as well as determine the REAL flash point with minimal run time having stressed out the bulb first.

Then next stage which I have been slowly doing is to run a bulb at what should be an ideal voltage using the Hotrater target of 10-15 hrs. I do the runs at a set voltage in stage two in various segments of 30 mins to 2 hrs. I have been checking to see how much the Lux drops off with run time, and the test is done when the bulb burns out at that fixed "ideal" voltage, or when the Lux drops so low the bulb might as well be dead. There is no other way to do the tests with any decent run time, other than to pick 1 or 2 estimated ideal voltages and see what happens. Suffice it to say that the drop off in Lux with some bulbs is shocking, as well as there not being ideal correlation with various bulbs to the Hotrater estimated run time at various voltages.

So the bottom line is you were running too much voltage (with the resistance fixes) for that bulb. There are many setups where the resistance fixes should NOT be done because you push the bulb too close to its flash point. I was not doing ideal voltage run time/Lux predictions with the ROP, since I only had the one bulb.
 
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Ginseng

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I'm saddened to see that the Aurora and Aurora2 are not on your list. The Aurora debuted in the winter of 2003 and was the first of the truly "super" Maglight mods. Beyond just bulb and battery upgrades, it rebuilt the concept of an incandescent hotwire from the ground up. I acknowledge the improvements in sophistication and power of the generations that came after, but wherever I am now, I would rest more peacefully knowing that these lights and the inspiration they fostered were not forgotten.

Wilkey
 

LuxLuthor

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Hello Ginseng!

The only thing is I didn't want to mention lights/mods that I have not seen or owned....but I'm sure your expertise is right on the mark. Where would you put it in the ranking just for reference....and link to a thread about it?
 

Ginseng

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A search on "Aurora" will turn up the relevant threads which are:

Aurora

Aurora2

The USL concept is closely related to the Aurora2. The original Aurora was of slightly lower output.

Wilkey
 

LuxLuthor

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A search on "Aurora" will turn up the relevant threads which are:

Aurora

Aurora2

The USL concept is closely related to the Aurora2. The original Aurora was of slightly lower output.

Wilkey

Wilkey, I'm so happy you shared this. What a beautiful work of art in that Aurora2....just before my time here. I understand why you want it listed. I'll put it just ahead of the USL, for posterity. Thanks again!

Also, just saw your website page in your sig. More wonderful information and wisdom.
 
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Ginseng

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Luxlover,

I apologize. I just realized that this thread was for lights you've had direct contact with. The other thread was just too long for me to dig into. You guys have done some wonderful work and I'm envious of the ingenuity of some of the modders here. Back in the early days, you could do a lot with a little but now it seems that the cutting edge is so much more demanding. I am glad that hotwires still get so much attention.

And on another note, I've happy to see my friend Jim Sexton appointed as a moderator in this forum. That was certainly the right and best choice to have been made.

Wilkey
 

Icebreak

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Wilkey! What is up, my brother?

Continued education went well I'm sure. How's your little cutie pie? Is she driving yet?

Remember when a lemlux 3 X CR123 + KPR112 was hot?

Remember when there wasn't an Incandescent forum?

Well, good. Good that some of the newer guys can meet the fellow that blazed the trail for Mag85, USL and other super lights.

Guys -

The term "HotWire". Yep. That's Ginseng.

And on another note, I've happy to see my friend Jim Sexton appointed as a moderator in this forum. That was certainly the right and best choice to have been made.

Good to see you've kept your sense of humor. Oh, Lawdy, it must have been a dark and stormy night when that decision was made. Ol' man Jim takes a lot of naps these days so I can get away with the jab, no problem.

Anyway, good to hear from you. Thanks for the nod and the word.
 
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Hallis

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It is indeed good to see Wilkey back on the forums. :) And the Aurora / Aurora2 definately deserve a place on the list. They were the heavy hitters long before Torches, Blasters, Polaris TK's, and even USL's were in our hands.

Shane
 

Spypro

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Jun 3, 2007
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A quick question here:
I wonder if it would be possible to power a 64655 bulb with 6 x 17670 cells (AW's ones: 2 stack of 3 cells) in a 3D M@g bored and with some kind of battery holder. Is it possible to use the 64655 with the stock head ? (I already got Boro lens and metal reflectors)
I know that I will have to drop the voltage of the batteries a little bit in order to not blow the bulb.
What about the stock switch ? Will it melt ?

I already build a nice M@g85 (4C body, AW softstart switch, 3 x 18650, 1185 bulb, boro lens and smooth reflector) and the result is awesome. The voltage getting to the bulb is 11.1v when I put fresh, out of the charger, batteries.

I want more ;)
 
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LuxLuthor

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A quick question here:
I wonder if it would be possible to power a 64655 bulb with 6 x 17670 cells (AW's ones: 2 stack of 3 cells) in a 3D M@g bored and with some kind of battery holder. Is it possible to use the 64655 with the stock head ? (I already got Boro lens and metal reflectors)
I know that I will have to drop the voltage of the batteries a little bit in order to not blow the bulb.
What about the stock switch ? Will it melt ?

I already build a nice M@g85 (4C body, AW softstart switch, 3 x 18650, 1185 bulb, boro lens and smooth reflector) and the result is awesome. The voltage getting to the bulb is 11.1v when I put fresh, out of the charger, batteries.

I want more ;)

Spypro, the 64655 is a 24V bulb that really needs 28-30V to perform...and 11-12 Amps. All of AW's cells have a 5.5 (+/- 0.3) Amp protection shutoff circuit. You either need high current NiMH cells, or the new A123/Emoli safe chemistry (high current) Lithium cells.
 
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