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Thread: Chinese professional mining headlamps (beamshots added)

  1. #1
    Flashaholic* Barbarin's Avatar
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    Default Chinese professional mining headlamps (beamshots added)

    Let's say a good percentage of the headlamps you can buy from China cheaply made, and not good at all.

    If you just want them to do some home repair maybe they are more than OK, but I won't recomend them for uses in which your life can depend on it.

    During decades mining headlamps have been "oudated" when it comes to the nowadays technologies. They were using Lead- Acid and incans, due probably to the strict regulations they must face, that makes really complicated and costly any moddification that must be tested and approved, so I guess that was the reason they were sticked to old technologies.

    But some years ago I started to see some changes, specially on chinese companies. They started to use Li-ION and LEDs. Its own mining market is very big, and it is not surprising that they would develope their own technology for this. Anyway, as I was very busy with Barbolight company I did not had enough time to take a look a them.

    Some weeks ago I looked back to this, and I started to have some conversations with some serious chinese engineers. I learned about their regulations for mining headlamps, which are in some terms more strict than ATEX/European ones. Finally, I managed to put my hands in some of their lamps.

    Impressions:

    Well, they are very well made. Extremely solid, and not heavy at all. Quality plastics, and a little bit bulky on the head diameter. The cable is from 6 to 8 mm diameter, have glands and strain relief parts. They are certified for IP66, but according to my own experience they are IP68 - 1 m at least. Due to its regulations they must be completely sealed, and just be able to be opened by qualified technicians.

    Beam: As it should be on any headlamp they do have a very wide sidespill, near 100º. The hot-spot is ver narrow and bright. Maybe too much for me. The reflector is smooth, and I would choose an OP for a headlamp, but the overall result is quite good. The auxiliary light (6 LEDs has too many artifacts due to the not centered leds and the smooth reflector)

    Usage: One switch on headlamp and KISS (Keep It Simple...): Two output levels coming from two different sources using the same reflector. You can choose high (primary /main source) or low (secondary/auxiliary). When battery gets too low you just can choose the low level.

    LEDs and modes: Main source is a high power LED, being driven at 350 mA (they told me they use CREE based chips, so I guess they are on the 100 lm area output). Secondary source are 6 x PLCC 3520 LEDs in parallel. Arround 10-15 lm.

    Runtime: Main light is 17 hours, secondary 48 hours (after 17 hours of main light).

    Batteries: Sealed LI-ION, 6 Amps 3,7 V.

    Weight: 480 gr.

    Charging system: The light has two external points, made from stainless steel and conveniently separated.

    Cons: The head angle is fixed.



    Headlight and battery case.



    Main source.



    Secondary source.


    They are for sure very good lights. As a caver I would have killed for one of those just some years ago. Now, I think they are a perfect host for modded lights... but as they are I'm sure they are way better than the average light you can find on a caver. From my experience 100 lm used with a good reflector are more than enough to beat the best carbide lamp.
    Last edited by Barbarin; 04-24-2010 at 03:02 AM.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Chinese professional mining headlamps

    That's a pretty awesome light. I'm sure they're relatively inexpensive too, given the volumes they probably move. Cool find, I wonder what these would run on the US market...
    EDC E1B, Tigerlight w/LED dropin for when I need more light. Love my new Zebralight H30 for floody tasks and my Quark Mini123 for being awesomely small and bright.

  3. #3
    Flashaholic* Barbarin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Chinese professional mining headlamps

    I promised not to reveal the pricing, but they are not expensive at all if you keep in mind its quality.

    There are many manufacturers. I've been talking to some of them. It seems they make more or less the same product, and I'm sure you can find them easily.

    I'm receiving three of them in 2-3 weeks, Two will be used to be modded. I have some XP-Gs R5 over there, and would like to see what can I do with the heat issue to try to get at least 200 lm of them. I still need to make a good caving headlamp for my own, and I refuse to buy one (and there are out there great ones, but...)

  4. #4

    Default Re: Chinese professional mining headlamps

    Quote Originally Posted by Barbarin View Post
    ...very wide sidespill, near 100º...
    ...One switch on headlamp and KISS (Keep It Simple...)...
    ...CREE based chips...I guess they are on the 100 lm area output...
    ...Main light is 17 hours, secondary 48 hours (after 17 hours of main light)...
    ...Sealed LI-ION, 6 Amps 3,7 V....
    Sounds like a good headlamp to me! 100 lumens from a wide, shallow reflector is about the ideal light for caving, if you ask me.

  5. #5
    Flashaholic* Barbarin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Chinese professional mining headlamps

    Bonus picture:

    Two headlights working. One of them with primary light source, and the other with secondary. You can see the wide angle of the primary beam. By the way, I like the look of the 6xLED.



    Javier

  6. #6

    Default Re: Chinese professional mining headlamps

    Is this comparable in size to a Wheat lamp?

    What are you using for a charger? I found a little more information about these lamps by searching around, but everything just said "uses standard charging rack" or something along those lines.

    edit: I just found these for sale:

    http://www.lmine.com/Merchant2/merch...roduct_Count=0

    I know nothing about the company, but the price isn't too bad compared to, say, a Koehler LI-16 caplamp.
    Last edited by vtunderground; 04-15-2010 at 04:24 AM.

  7. #7
    Flashaholic* Barbarin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Chinese professional mining headlamps

    Well,

    I'm not familiar with Wheat lamps, but it seems they all fit the same standard when it comes to size, so most probably they are the same size and look.

    Looking at the Koehler, that is most probably manufactured in China, it seems waaaay overpriced, and even more for a incan lamp.

    Regarding the charger system, there is a kind of "standard" for mining lamps with no wires or connector, just contacts on external points.

    I just tested the light for a while, but I'm going to receive some soon, and I will post more detailed information, pics and results. I'm sure it is possible to make a very good caving lamp with very little mods, within a reasonable cost.

    Javier

  8. #8
    Flashaholic* Barbarin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Chinese professional mining headlamps

    885 US$ for a incan+Li-ION???

    http://www.lmine.com/Merchant2/merch...roduct_Count=2

    There must be a mistake. If you sell a dozen you pay the moulds and the initializing.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Chinese professional mining headlamps

    I don't think these are prices that actual humans pay for these lamps. These are probably the prices that the US Government pays for them.

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    Flashaholic alphazeta's Avatar
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    Default Re: Chinese professional mining headlamps

    Quote Originally Posted by Yucca Patrol View Post
    I don't think these are prices that actual humans pay for these lamps. These are probably the prices that the US Government pays for them.
    Unfortunately, I believe you are correct...

    However in the end, the taxpayers do eventually foot these bills

  11. #11
    Flashaholic* Barbarin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Chinese professional mining headlamps

    Quote Originally Posted by alphazeta View Post
    Unfortunately, I believe you are correct...

    However in the end, the taxpayers do eventually foot these bills

    Yes, governments get the money to pay the bills from the poor taxpayers... So, at the end, we are paying those prices.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Chinese professional mining headlamps

    Quote Originally Posted by Barbarin View Post
    Now, I think they are a perfect host for modded lights....
    You could be right. For ideas how this might be done, take a look at;

    http://www.bisun.co.uk/
    http://customduo.co.uk/custompitlamp.aspx

  13. #13
    Flashaholic* Barbarin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Chinese professional mining headlamps

    Quote Originally Posted by simples View Post
    You could be right. For ideas how this might be done, take a look at;

    http://www.bisun.co.uk/
    http://customduo.co.uk/custompitlamp.aspx
    Thank you.

    I was thinking about a more serious mod, such as getting at least three levels from the main light, a little bit more output from the auxiliary... improve the heatsinking to increase the current on the LED, and a IP68 connector to be able to replace the batteries.

    Will let you know.

    Javier

  14. #14
    Flashaholic* Barbarin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Chinese professional mining headlamps (pics added)



    Testing the light outdoors, compared to a UF-H2 (a single CREE XRE with "no optics" and being driven at 350 mA or so) a UF C3 SS (single CREE XRE, being driven at 400 mA, with a 18 mm reflector) and the chinese Lamp unmodified. (regular LED, being driven at 350 mA)

    Results: The spot is amazing, it is incredible how far does it throw. Not the best option for caving in my opinion, but maybe a good choice on a environment as a mine. The angle of the corona is also very wide. This is the best part, as according to my experience this is what is really needed on a headlamp. I would like to have a little larger hot-spot, less bright, and a brighter corona.

    Well, I'm going to do some testings using a CREE XPG-R5, and sputtered reflectors. Using a top LED would mean to get a 50% or higher improvement on the light output, and sputtering the reflector I will get for sure to make a larger and dimmer hot-spot.

    Will keep you informed... and soon more will come.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Chinese professional mining headlamps (pics added)

    Quote Originally Posted by Barbarin View Post
    Well, I'm going to do some testings using a CREE XPG-R5, and sputtered reflectors. Using a top LED would mean to get a 50% or higher improvement on the light output, and sputtering the reflector I will get for sure to make a larger and dimmer hot-spot.

    Will keep you informed... and soon more will come.
    Have you gotten a chance to try to put an XP-G in this light yet? I'm eagerly awaiting your modding results

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