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Thread: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

  1. #91
    Flashaholic* climberkid's Avatar
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    Default Re: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

    I like the idea of modifying the battery carrier to emulate the hydra-shock. I carry those exclusively.
    -Alex

  2. #92
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    Default Re: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

    Whose Ti gate clips are those? They look very nice.

  3. #93
    Flashaholic* DBCstm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

    nbp, the more squared off ones are Maratacs, they have very strong steel gates. The more rounded ones are McGizmo and the gates are Ti as well. The Ti gate is considerably weaker, both a con and a pro at the same time. If you need to remove the item regularly the McGizmo is the way to go, but if you want it ultra secure the Maratacs are tough to open, quite strong!

  4. #94
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    Default Re: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

    Ahhh, good tips man! I was a bit unsure, as some looked like McG, but from other angles they looked square - two different ones, that explains it. Good to have a decent alternative as the Ti McG gates clips are getting harder and harder to find. I don't think Don is commissioning these sorts of hardware anymore unfortunately.

  5. #95
    Flashaholic* DBCstm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

    That's unfortunate, as his are the only ones that fully anodize to match your Ti items. I have anodized the curb chain this light is on as well as the McGizmo gate clip to a dark gold color. The chain, it's kind a funny...I have a 1" diameter Ti bar that has 1/4" deep slots cut in it at 0,90, 180, and 270 positions. It's tapered on one end with a smaller threaded end coming off the taper. This was perfect for mounting in my cordless drill and wrapping the chain around to heat with a propane torch while spinning it to maintain a constant heat over the length of the chain. Or so I thought. Forgot about taking those slots into consideration! So where the chain crossed the slots it was in open air space and got hotter, making blue/purple 1/4" spaces in the necklace in intervals of about 3/4". At the end where I anchored the chain it was also away from the Ti bar and got a wider area of purple/blue/light blue about 3/4" wide in 2 places on opposite ends of the necklace. All in all it's a pretty neat effect. The McGizmo gate clip is uniformly gold, holding the Texas Poker. I had to smooth the radius on the curved portion to allow it to slide into the mount hold in the tail but that was fairly easy to do and it polished out nicely. The softer gate mechanism is much easier to disengage with a finger to remove the TP from my chain. Works great!

  6. #96
    Flashaholic* DBCstm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

    A little update, I'm finding the light to be indispensable. My wife had surgery a couple of months back and I stayed with her at the hospital. I was reading a book, but of course the lighting was horrible in the room and I wanted her to get some sleep, so I read by the low on the Texas Poker. Very nice for close-up lighting in this kind of situation! So dim it didn't bother her, and she's bothered by light at night very easily! I literally read several hours with it, and it didn't put a dent in the battery level, low is Very low!

    I'd been sort of worried when the PICcolo didn't work out, really thought I'd need that 1.2A. Well, glad I don't have that power level now! Hi, at some .80A is too bright for a lot of things and I seldom use it. lol

    As in photography, the world of flashlights involves trade-offs and compromises. Ask Leatherman tool company about that one. lol But sometimes it's difficult to decide exactly which way to go, with a lens or with a light. Matt was some put out when the PICcolo didn't work out. As was I. In the end, Matt sent me some of the drivers in order for me to play with, and perhaps get working to my satisfaction. Well, indeed the mode changes are somewhat odd. As are they on the mini FluPIC. Come to find out, in conjunction with an Efest IMR10440 battery the PICcolo only pushes about .80A instead of the 1.2A we were at first expecting. So, after much debate on User Interface and functionality, I put the PICcolo in the Texas Poker. I made a solid copper button to solder onto it for the battery contact, with the Lee plastic spring holding the cell back to break connection. So the Texas Poker has the driver that was made for it, and has Fred's name on the board as well. A bit odd in mode changes, but so was the miniFluPIC. I'll take the trade-off.

    Oddly enough, it has 4 modes instead of 3. Matt is perplexed, but there it is. A VERY low Lo, and 3 steps up from that to a very nice Hi. With memory.

    Still use it daily, love it even more! Suits me, as I can be a bit wonky my own self...:P

  7. #97
    Flashaholic* climberkid's Avatar
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    What makes the PICcolo so strange for mode switching? Do you have a comparison video or anything from the FluPIC vs PICcolo? always interested in your minute details you know.
    -Alex

  8. #98
    Flashaholic* DBCstm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

    The FluPIC had 5 modes. Lo, Med, Hi, blank, set for med. So if you were using Hi and wanted to go to lo you had to skip a dark mode, then skip the set mode, to get to lo. That dark blank mode was always messing me up! In any of the other modes, the light would flash at just under one second to indicate that mode had been stored in memory. The PICcolo has an odd flash of Hi at the onset of any mode, whether you're turning it on in Lo from memory (flash hi) or using Hi, there is no flash on Hi. So that very brief flash of bright light when you want lo is kind of messed up too. But I prefer it over the blank mode and having to skip the set mode. In the FluPICs 5th set mode, I was forever entering into it and messing up the 40% that I liked for a Med. (it had 10 levels at 10% steps, roughly) With the PICcolo, lo is very very dim, excellent for midnight situations (once you get past that hi flash, it's very very brief, I've learned to fist the light while turning it on then expose the level) the second mode is not much brighter than the dim moon low but it is a bit brighter. Then a nice medium and the .80A Hi. Hope I've described that well. lol Here's an animated GIF to show the modes, I had to set the camera to catch the moon mode but also not blow out the high, so you'll have to look hard to see the ultra low mode!
    Texas-Poker-PICcolo-4-Modes-sm-sq by genie in a black box, on Flickr
    Last edited by DBCstm; 08-23-2013 at 09:04 PM. Reason: added picture

  9. #99
    Flashaholic* climberkid's Avatar
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    It's such beautiful light.

    I think it's silly that for an on the spot programmable driver tout can't turn off the programming mode...

    I understand that the size was the restrictive factor in this project so I guess it's pretty incredible for what you ended up with anyway.
    -Alex

  10. #100
    Flashaholic* DBCstm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

    I Love It! Fred did a fantastic job with it. As I've learned of late, what good is immense output if you can't use it? A few seconds and it burns you, that's not good for anything but showing off. When you're looking for something in the dark, a few seconds seldom gets the job done.

  11. #101
    Flashaholic* DBCstm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

    About time for an update here. The original FluPic driver was running this light at around 134 lumens as I recall. The PICcolo driver was running in the neighborhood of 180 lumens max. The design on this light was intending much more, the issue was a driver this small. Well, a couple of months ago I started assembling and flashing my own drivers. I started out conservatively with the Texas Poker as it was utilizing an Nichia emitter. But then I swapped that out for an XP-G2 de-domed and built a new driver with no holds barred. This new driver was letting the XP-G2 pull 3.11A for 552 lumens at start up, 452 lumens at 30 seconds, off the Efest IMR10440 cell. Excellent!

    But wait! There's more! lol

    Today I opened her back up and pulled the XP-G2 emitter. Replaced that with the new XP-L emitter in V5 2A trim. De-domed to fit the quite small reflector. Even had to open up the reflector a bit to clear the larger die of the XP-L. But now, still running the second FET direct drive driver, I'm getting 10 lumens on low, 86 lumens on Med, 362 lumens on High, and ...drumroll please... 831 lumens on Turbo!!! Yep, 831 lumens out the front at start up on a cell that's rested at 4.18V. Crazy huh?

  12. #102
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    Default Re: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

    Wow, Dale, it's hard to imagine that the Texas Poker can now output that many lumens. Great work!
    PhotonFanatic—fanatic@photonfanatic.com
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  13. #103
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    Default Re: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

    I need to make my way back to Texas so I can see this baby in person!
    That's just astounding.
    -Alex

  14. #104
    Flashaholic* DBCstm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

    I'm extremely happy with it, as y'all can well guess! My pride and joy with PUNCH! And the fact that I manage to build the driver myself, well, just tickled pink. The highest number I've seen out of it, with a newer cell, was 917 lumens at start up! From a light the size of your index finger!

    Yeah, I'm loving it all right! 5 levels, from about 9 lumens to around 900 (with the right cell) Over and beyond what I ever dreamed of for this one. Of course, I use the lowest modes most often, but on occasion when outside and out and about it's just staggering to flip this up out of my shirt and shed good light out at 100 yds. And it blows peoples minds. Which is, of course, half the fun!

    I tried to get a couple of new reflectors from Dereelight so I would have some room to play, and was hoping to get the smooth one in this light for better throw. But, after carefully searching out their website and ordering the reflector I thought was right, they came in shaped wrong for this one. So, still running the Orange Peel reflector which is, 98% of the time, the right one for it anyway.

    I have one more step in the life of the TP, have to do more work on the driver to engage a moon mode, should have one level more at the bottom end at around 1 lumen that I need to get going and then it'll be perfect and I can pot it.

  15. #105
    Flashaholic* DBCstm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

    I've been remiss on a picture, sorry about that. In the center of the picture is a red 55 gallon oil drum at 97 yds. This is my standard beamshot, Canon G1X at ISO1600, f/5.6 at 1/2 sec exp.


  16. #106
    Flashaholic* climberkid's Avatar
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    Default Re: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

    Welcome back, Dale. So awesome to see your success in building your new driver. So exciting!
    -Alex

  17. #107
    Flashaholic* DBCstm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

    Thanks Alex.
    Yes, it is exciting and I've been building these direct drive FET drivers almost exclusively for all my lights. Being able to program the modes at whatever level I wish, and however many modes as well is just fantastic!
    With lights having an e-switch, I'm using a reversing UI that lets me back into Turbo from off. This also allows using moon with a soft press, then backing into off again with a long press (about 1/2 second). Unbelievable how handy that is!
    So having a light with direct drive capabilites for Turbo, but as little as <1 lumen moon, well, it's nuts really. I've got a 3 XM-L2 light that does almost 5000 lumens, and moon is less than 1. With 7 levels and the reversing UI, it's just a great all around light.

    But of course, this also means I've been spending every available dime on lights! Now running right at 70 lights.

    I know, it's a sickness.

  18. #108
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    Default Re: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

    I only just found this thread. I'm a relative noob on the CPF and just wanted to say this light is truly gorgeous, and the thread was very informative as I'm still relatively new to collecting customs, although not flashlights in general.

    I already have four of Photon Fanatic's lights so am no stranger to his genius. I just wish I had one of these. :-)

    Thanks for all the photos. This light really looks great.

    Quote Originally Posted by DBCstm View Post
    Look what I got today!


    DBC_April 29, 2013_171619 by genie in a black box, on Flickr


    DBC_April 29, 2013_171558 by genie in a black box, on Flickr


    DBC_April 29, 2013_171521 by genie in a black box, on Flickr


    DBC_April 29, 2013_171431 by genie in a black box, on Flickr


    DBC_April 29, 2013_170636 by genie in a black box, on Flickr

    I'm working on a shoot from today, but managed to squeezin these shots with the 17-40. Back to work! More later...
    It is better to buy a beautiful, expensive, custom flashlight than to curse the darkness.

  19. #109
    Flashaholic* stateoftheart's Avatar
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    Default Re: Texas Poker by Photon Fanatic

    Nice where did the ti chain come from

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