Maglight focusing problem

Yukoncornelius

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Jan 31, 2021
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My maglite has a problem when focusing the beam. When turning the head the light cuts in and out. This happens with a new bulb and the old bulb. I reseated the bulb many times. Any ideas?
 

xxo

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Apr 30, 2015
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Check obvious things like the batteries and make sure that the tail cap is tight.

Then check the contacts in the tail cap assembly (spring, inside of tail cap that makes contact with the spring and the de-anodized ring that mates with the de-anodized ring in the back of the barrel of the light) - make sure everything is clean and making good contact.

Could also be the switch, check that it moves freely inside the light on it's spring. If the switch itself is bad (maybe due to leaking batteries?) you will need to disassemble or possibly relpace it.
 

greenpondmike

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The part that holds the bulb- that slides up and down, that has a long strip of metal that runs beside it that connects onto the back of the actual removable (from the plastic innerds) switch. It probably needs sanding or scraping a little. One of mine did the same thing. You're going to have to dissemble the plastic innerds and clean the metal contacts within along with the switch. Be careful with the metal strip when installing. It should make a big difference in output. If you don't want to do that I suggest you buy another switch assembly- which included the actual switch and the plastic innerds assembly. Maglight might replace it for free if no battery damage.
 
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Yukoncornelius

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The part that holds the bulb- that slides up and down, that has a long strip of metal that runs beside it that connects onto the back of the actual removable (from the plastic innerds) switch. It probably needs sanding or scraping a little. One of mine did the same thing. You're going to have to dissemble the plastic innerds and clean the metal contacts within along with the switch. Be careful with the metal strip when installing. It should make a big difference in output. If you don't want to do that I suggest you buy another switch assembly- which included the actual switch and the plastic innerds assembly. Maglight might replace it for free if no battery damage.

You don't have any pictures do you?
 

bykfixer

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Dirty contacts like others said. Lots of how to videos available on replacing the switch but it's just a dirty part that you need to do with the switch out of the light. Take switch out, clean part and put switch back more than likely.

Often if the light sat around unused for a while a thin film of crud develops on copper parts in the area between the switch and bulb. You may be able to get it going by twisting the head back and forth a bunch of times but until you clean the dirty part you'll be plagued with it not working sometimes like you are now.
 
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greenpondmike

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No, I'm sorry to say I don't have any pictures. You may be able to short cut it though with some contact cleaner sprayed in the place (on the side-inside) of where the bulb goes up and down. Taking out the switch assembly is easy though, but depending on how old or new your light is there are two different tools to use. Old ones take a 2mm allen wrench and the newer ones take a t-8 torx wrench I think and it needs to have a hole in the middle of it to fit. Just take the rubber boot off the switch and have switch in the pushed in "on" position. Put the tool down into the narrow hole in the middle of the switch push on/off thing and see if it makes good contact traction (gentle pressure until you're sure you have the right tool). If tool doesn't lock in use the other type. Turn counterclockwise (when assured you are using the right tool). Don't take all the way out- a quarter turn might be overdoing it. Afterwards use gentle pressure from the front and push it out the back. If you give mag instruments your serial number they will send you the right tool along with the switch and just wait until you receive your switch before working on it if you're not mechanically inclined, but if you are then you might be able to dissemble the switch assembly yourself and fix it. Be careful because there are a couple of springs in there and some small parts. When assembled if the light doesn't work you might have put one of those small contacts in backwards. Don't overtighten the screw that holds the switch assembly in place when you put it back in, but be aware that since the screw also doubles as a ground it needs to be snug.

Edit: like bykfixer said there are some videos on how to do all this and even one on youtube on how to improve the switch assembly if you are going to make the light more powerful. Mainly the mod cuts down on resistance and bypasses weaknesses in the circuit. Mainly bypassing the bigger spring in the assembly and the one in the tailcap. They still use the springs , but bypass the circuit running through them.
 
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