Newby questions about cheap 18650 LED flashlights !

junk250

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Sep 29, 2011
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I recently got a cheap led flashlight (ultrafire g-10 300 lumen I think),and I like it a lot.

But now naturally, I want bigger and better and brighter !

I think I want 18650 battery format, 1x, maybe 2x 18650.

My questions for now,

There are several different emitter types, what is most efficient/best technology, a timeline maybe of the types/benefits of different types ?

I'm wanting a cheap 900-1000 lumen light and some run at 1.0 amp and some run at 2.0 amp, running at 2 amp would be better/brighter no?

One more question, some 18650 lights run on 3.7-4.2 volts, some others run at 2.7-4.2 volt, wouldn't the larger volt range 2.7-4.2 be better ?

I know I'm asking a lot, be gentle on the newby

Thank you !
 

Learjet

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Oct 19, 2005
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Mackay QLD Australia
I can't answer all your questions, but check out the latest in XM-L lights, they are incredibly bright. T6 bins are most common but U2 bins are out there in lower numbers atm. I really like my T6 and have a U2 in the mail.
 

LEDninja

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Jun 15, 2005
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Hamilton Canada
:welcome:

I recently got a cheap led flashlight (ultrafire g-10 300 lumen I think),and I like it a lot.
What battery are you using with your G10? With AA you are only getting 90 lumens. You need 14500 to get the 350 LED/250 OTF lumens. If you are using AA just buy some 14500 and charger. AW highly recommended. You can get them here:
http://www.cpfmarketplace.com/mp/showthread.php?230876-AW-s-LiIon-Batteries-Sales-Thread-*Part-12*
4sevens and Lighthound also have them in stock as well. Read up on how to use them safely. See next section below.


I think I want 18650 battery format, 1x, maybe 2x 18650.
18650 batteries can :poof: explode :poof: if not used properly. Learn Using Li-ion cells in LED flashlights safely.
http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb...-Using-Li-ion-cells-in-LED-flashlights-safely
Some threads with pictures to show what happens when 18650 batteries are not taken care of.
http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/showthread.php?262234-TK-Monster-Explosion
http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/showthread.php?280909-Ultrafire-18650-3000mA-exploded


There are several different emitter types, what is most efficient/best technology, a timeline maybe of the types/benefits of different types ?
SSC-P7: 4 Cree 1 mm*1 mm dies wired in parallel. 2.8A @3.6V.
Cree MC-E: 4 Cree 1 mm*1 mm dies can be wired in parallel, series, or series/parellel. 2.8A @3.6V or 1.4A @7.2V or 0.7A @14.4V
SST-50: 2 mm*2 mm die. 4A @ 3.6V. Runs high enough current to put 18650 batteries in the :poof: danger zone.
SST 90: 3 mm *3 mm die. 9A @ 3.6V. 30+ WATTS!!! Need multi battery packs. Oven gloves to hold it without burning your hands.
Cree XM-L: 2 mm*2 mm die. 3+A @ 3.6V. The SST-50 warning may apply here.
All the above run hot enough in the smaller torch bodies at full power that you should not run for more than 5 minutes at a time.


I'm wanting a cheap 900-1000 lumen light and some run at 1.0 amp and some run at 2.0 amp, running at 2 amp would be better/brighter no?
Try and get a multi-mode light so you can run in medium most of the time going to max for short bursts only when necessary.
BTW the 900-1000 lumen light are way over rated. Divide by 2 to get the actual out the front lumen number.
At 1A you get 200 OTF lumens. At 2A you get 400 OTF lumens. At 2.8A+ you get 600 OTF lumens but your torch can get too hot to hold very fast.

One more question, some 18650 lights run on 3.7-4.2 volts, some others run at 2.7-4.2 volt, wouldn't the larger volt range 2.7-4.2 be better ?
Your 18650 battery will get damaged if it drops below 2.7V and :poof: explode :poof: next time you try to charge it. The cheap lights do NOT have low voltage protection so 3.7-4.2 volts or 2.7-4.2 volt mean the same thing - you risk an explosion if you try to get the last bit of juice out of your battery. Try to charge often.
The SSC-P7 is an older LED but it has the advantage of having a higher Vf usually start dimming at ~3.6V so your chances of damaging your battery by running it below 2.7V is less.
The newer LEDs are brighter (not by a lot in % terms) but their lower Vf let them run to 2.7V or about the point they might be damaged before dimming. Look for "Built in voltage protection cuts off at 3V" in the flashlight description. Most of the lights at shiningbeam have it. Most of the lights at DX, KD, Manafont do not.
 
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junk250

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LEDNinja,

Thanks for the great info, that explained a lot !

I have been reading up on led FL's for a while, but just a lot of different LED emitter types, and body types, voltages/amps specs ect., hard to get a grip on it all.

Your explanation of the emitter types is helpful, thanks.

I have been looking at XM-L lights, so I guess I'm on the right track.

I am running rechargeable Li-ion aa's in the G-10, pretty darn bright for such a tiny light !

And yes I am aware of the dangers involved with the 18650 and other high power batteries, that why I'll start with a single 18650 light. And I'll also probably stick with "protected" batteries, to hopefully eliminate over/under charging problems.

Approx. how many lumen is possible with a XM-L emitter and one 18650 battery ? It depends on the amperage I know, but say how many @1 amp, or @2 amp?

Thanks
 

stangster

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If you like your UniqueFire G10 (I love mine), the UniqueFire UF-2100 is a bigger, brighter version of the G10. Just imagine your G10 on steriods. lol It reminds me (size and feeling) of an Inova XO. And since it's got an XM-L in a fairly small reflector, it will be nice and floody much like the R5 in the G10... only brighter!

And you say you want cheap? They have them at dinodirect for only $16.00.

Check out this video of the G10 vs 2100.
http://youtu.be/ZAu5_cZH3nc
 

junk250

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LEDninja, I just realized "14500" does not mean a rechargeable 1.5 volt Nimh as i thought, It means a 3.7 volt li-ion.

The part #s confused me, I do have a charger and 17500's, and 18650's (for another light I ordered) on the way !

I have actually been running it with a rechargeable 1.5 Nimh (Targus 2400 mah) which is the worst battery for power and run time i think, even a standard non rechargeable 1.5 would be better probably from what I have read.

I just did a run time test on the G-10 R5 with the crappy rechargeable NiMh 1.5 battery and the light did pretty good !

I played with it for a day intermittently(maybe 10 minutes on high) and at 9:25 I turned it on High and laid it on my desk, it ran at high power for at least 30 minutes before light dropped of after that. It is now 10:48 and its still lit but at low power so a decent hour or so at nearly full power with a 1.5 volt rechargeable.

I can't wait til my charger and the 17500 arrives.

The G-10 was actually advertised when I bought it as using AA or 18650, but now the (DX) specs changed to AA or 17500.

DX Reviews had many peeps saying the 3.7~4.2 volt 18650 would fry the light in seconds, but the 17500 and the 18650 are the same voltage right?

So will the 17500 fry the G-10? Would the 18650 fit, fry it ? lol

Still waiting on the slow boat for the charger and the 17500 and 18650 batteries.

Thanks chris

Update: the light has been on high mode since 9:25pm it is now 11:21pm and the light is still lit but getting very dim, enough to read by maybe...about dead.

But lit for 2 hours, and about 45 minutes of high beam on a cheap NiMh 1.5 volt rechargeable.

Another Update just for fun: It is now 11:45 and the battery is going black.. but wait a minute, hit the switch and it comes back on, I have done this about 5 times and still lighting back up with useable light for a minute at a time, a nice function of the NiMh I guess, after a minute rest it comes back in low mode or so for 30 seconds. Wait another minute, it will come back again for another 30 seconds, repeat.

Another Update, it is now 12:00 am and the light continues to come back on after a 30 second rest, actually coming on much brighter than the long on cycle.

I like the emergency reserve power of the NiMh more and more, It's still lighting up bright at 12:10 after a little rest cycle, started the test at 9:25.

I think this light is mocking me, has been running for like 3 hours on one AA.

Keeps coming back on, over and over !
 
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junk250

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Sep 29, 2011
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Stangster,

I will check out the UF-2100, the cheapo DX G-10 is pretty amazing on 1.5 volt AA's !

Look into the beam, and it's like looking at a welding arc without a hood !

Can't wait to put the 3 volt 17500 in it.

Thanks Chris
 
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LEDninja

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Hamilton Canada
Approx. how many lumen is possible with a XM-L emitter and one 18650 battery ? It depends on the amperage I know, but say how many @1 amp, or @2 amp?
The more powerful 18650 batteries have both the voltage and amperage to power up an XML fully.
From the recovered files from the CPF crash:
http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb...-watt-350-mA&p=3591802&viewfull=1#post3591802

Re: Cree does it again-160 lumens per watt @350 mA
Written by Vinz on 11-22-2010 07:08 AM GMT
Here are some measurements of the XM-L T6-1D, taken by an ulbricht-sphere:
xm-l-t6.jpg

I found it on taobao.com, seller of the auction is 2a524, if I'm right.
Regards,
Vinz

Re: Cree does it again-160 lumens per watt @350 mA
Written by Curt R on 11-22-2010 07:00 PM GMT
That output information from Vinz fits the output graph that I made for the XM-L LED.
At 350 mA 145L, 1000mA 385L, 1500mA 540L, 2000mA 680L, 3000mA 910L, 3600mA 1050L for the T6 bin.
The T5 bin at 350mA 140L, 1000mA 350L, 1500mA 500L, 2000mA 630L, 3000mA 840L and at 3600mA 940L.
For the XP-G R5 we have at 350mA 140L, 1000mA 345L and at 1500mA 460L.
It would be hard to justify using the XM-L at under 1000mA of LED drive current for a 10% output increase
with the T6 over the XP-G R5.
That initial 160 Lumens per watt seems to have disappeared.
Curt

Using Curt R's numbers (he is the designer for Peak LED solutions)
Max: 1050 LED lumens > 682 - 840 OTF lumens;
3A: 910 LED lumens > 591 - 728 OTF lumens;
2A: 680 LED lumens > 442 - 544 OTF lumens;
1A: 385 LED lumens > 250 - 308 OTF lumens.

-----

BigC measured an Elektrolumens EDC P7 (18650 + SSC-P7) and got:
Electrolumens
EDC P7________P7 DD_________1 IMR 18650_______ 793.1______1 sec
______________________________________________ 613.8______30 sec
______________________________________________ 604.6______1 min
______________________________________________ 589.2______2 min
______________________________________________ 582.3______3 min

Electrolumens
EDC P7_________P7 DD________1 AW 2600mAh______ 731.5______1 sec
______________________________________________ 617.7______30 sec
_______________________________________________597.7______1 min
_______________________________________________584.4______2 min
_______________________________________________581.5______3 min

Note the big drop off between startup and 3 minutes! So a 731+ OTF lumens (900+ LED lumens) is actually 581- OTF lumens if you use the torch for more than 3 minutes.
The drop in lumens is not noticeable to my eyes.
 
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