# Thread: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

1. ## WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

A 97% Tungsten bar, 3/4" diameter by 12" long.

Cut off a couple of pieces and get to work:

As machined--haven't cleaned it up yet.

2. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Any idea what the intact bar originally weighed ... ?

EDIT - I calculate over 14-1/2 pounds (!)

3. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Sounds about right, but I didn't weigh it.

The actual density according to the certificate is 18.51 g/cubic centimeter.

4. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Originally Posted by archimedes
Any idea what the intact bar originally weighed ... ?

EDIT - I calculate over 14-1/2 pounds (!)
Originally Posted by PhotonFanatic
The actual density according to the certificate is 18.51 g/cubic centimeter.
Length (L): 12 in ≈ 30.48 cm
Radius (r): .375 in ≈ 0.9525 cm
Density (D): 18.51 g/cm^3

V = L * π * r^2

V = 30.48 cm * π * (0.9525 cm)^2 ≈ 86.875 cm^3

Mass (M) = D*V

M = 18.51 g/cm^3 * 86.875 cm^3 ≈ 1608.06 g ≈ 3.55 pounds

5. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Maybe I missed a decimal point somewhere ...

EDIT - I think I may have misread .75" diameter as .75" radius ... oops

6. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

That's an easy mistake to make. I know I've done it before.

7. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

I'm subscribed to this one. Your WIP threads are so fun to watch. Thanks for doing them.

8. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Love that final pattern Fred! Looks fantastic! Shame it doesn't anodize like Ti. Gonna be a really awesome light, no surprise there though!

Looking forward to the rest of the build...

9. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Looking good Fred

Subscribed!

10. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

I realize that I haven't actually posted some photos of how the battery tube was made on the lathe, so I'll show some work on the head of the light, to make amends.

Here's the end of the head where the battery tube will be attached. I've prepared the area to be threaded--the flat area ahead of the threads is for the O-ring landing--the O-ring being held in a groove on the battery tube, of course.

The treads have now been machined--they are 0.5mm pitch.

And the final check on those threads, to ensure a smooth feel to the threads. I never check my threads with gauges, since I always have the mating part on hand--and how they work means more to me than whether I cut them to spec or not.

The start of the exterior machining--the head has been placed on an expandable collet and that collet sits in a rotary indexer. So the cutting operation is basically milling. The cutting tool on the left is brought into the work to a specific depth, the part is rotated 360 degrees to cut a circumferential groove. Then the tool is advanced a bit more, the rotation repeated and then the final depth is reached in the third iteration. These are the easier cuts to do, they just take a long time.

And now the axial grooves are being machined. This is hardest operation to do perfectly. The placement of the cutting tool along the axis is not exactly where the circumferential grooves were machined--the width of the flat between the grooves is 0.127mm, so the beginning and end measurements are either increased/decreased by 0.06mm to ensure that the cutter does nor mar the circumferential grooves' surfaces. With each section having four cuts, and with five sections around the circumference, that means twenty cuts, each of which require three passes to get to the right depth--so a total of 60 cuts just for one section, and a grand total of 180 cuts to complete the head.

And did I mention that there were three sections on the battery tube, also?

A trip to the buffing wheel to take some of the sharp edges down a tad, then to the hot detergent wash to clean off the buffing compounds before posing for the camera.

Front of the light on the left--showing the bevel to the lens.

Close-up shot.

Overall, I'm pleased with how it is progressing. The light bouncing off the pyramids when turned in your hand is quite entrancing, actually.

11. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Originally Posted by PhotonFanatic
... And now the axial grooves are being machined. This is hardest operation to do perfectly ... a total of 60 cuts just for one section, and a grand total of 180 cuts to complete the head...

Fred, Fred, Fred... you're killing us here!!! That is simply divine - and what else could it be with all that hard work!!!

This one's got me sitting on the edge of my chair...

12. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Stunning! So you're sending it to me for testing right?

13. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

I don't recall you saying what cell this one takes? 14500? Will this also be utilizing your PICcolo driver? Or will that be left open as an option for the buyer?

Want a challenge for the next one? Make the areas of pyramids on different rotating rings such that it would be similar to a puzzle, align the pyramids in different formations to access the modes of the light....all in a row for Hi, alternating P-G-P for lo with P-G-G for Med or something like that.

Well done Fred, constantly amazed. Wish I could come over and watch the work while taking HD video. I'd probably be so amazed at each "turn" of events that I'd forget to start the camera! lol

Dale

14. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

The light will have a rechargeable 14500 Lithium-ion battery. As for the driver, it could depend on what someone wants in there, but most likely I would try to install the PICcolo driver when it is completed.

Really, I have enough challenges already, thank you.

15. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

DBCstm, In consideration of how busy you are with the Texas Poker light, I'll gladly take the the laborious task of testing this light (say 8 to 10 years) ,off your shoulders my friend!

16. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Alex, shhhh! I think he's considering it! Oh, wait, that's actually the sound of laughter from 1535 miles away. Dang!

Fred, do you know if you'll be using an XP-G2 emitter or will that also be an option to be considered by the buyer? How do you design the light without knowing what emitter will go into it, is it difficult to find the proper reflector or TIR sized to fit the light and an array of various sized emitters? I can see where headaches could occur on a daily basis! lol

Nice, though, that you leave that an open option for a better Universal fit to the new owner. Again, nicely done on the attention to detail.

Dale

17. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Fred, if you keep going this way,constantly innovating and pushing the boundaries of what many here have called"functional art" ,I think the expression "you've outdone yourself" will soon become meaningless. I think what Dale is really saying, is that it's time for the next evolution in PhotonFanatic lights.Yes I'm talking about the fabled "Indiana Jones" puzzle light! Come on Fred after conquering the "transparent aluminium light" ,we all know your more than ready for a "real" challenge now. Let the new paradigm begin!

18. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Originally Posted by DBCstm
. .

Fred, do you know if you'll be using an XP-G2 emitter or will that also be an option to be considered by the buyer? How do you design the light without knowing what emitter will go into it, is it difficult to find the proper reflector or TIR sized to fit the light and an array of various sized emitters? I can see where headaches could occur on a daily basis! lol

Nice, though, that you leave that an open option for a better Universal fit to the new owner. Again, nicely done on the attention to detail.

Dale
When I start to design a light, I work with what I have on hand for emitters, drivers and reflectors. I try to leave some wiggle room so that I can change one or two of those items, but I can't always guarantee that will be possible. In short, I know that I'll be able to make something at least and then leave it up to the marketplace to decide if it's worthwhile or not.

19. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Wonderful zen machining...a dedicated monk's work for sure.

I love it. But I say that about everything you build.

obi

20. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Beautiful... a true artist at work...

21. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Thank you for doing this (and the other one).
I had looked into tungsten a long while ago as to whether it was possible to machine it using a hobby or home workshop type lathe/mill setup and found very little information except that it demanded carbide insert tips.
You have clearly shown that, just like titanium, tungsten and other exotic metals arn't anywhere near as scary as some would have you believe.

I'll have to keep an eye out for some 1" tungsten rod.

22. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Tofty,

That won't be cheap.

It's much more expensive than Titainium.

23. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Cheapness is not generally a consideration i have when making lights, especially not with my solid silver one.

24. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Originally Posted by Tofty
Cheapness is not generally a consideration i have when making lights, especially not with my solid silver one.

\$110 to ship a \$150 rod of molybdenum? That's a bit high...

25. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Originally Posted by Tofty
Cheapness is not generally a consideration i have when making lights, especially not with my solid silver one.

Well, I'd want a lot more info on what is actually being sold--like knowing what alloy it might be.

Not to mention--from Wikipedia:

Molybdenum dusts and fumes, which can be generated by mining or metalworking, can be toxic, especially if ingested (including dust trapped in thesinuses and later swallowed).[66] Low levels of prolonged exposure can cause irritation to the eyes and skin. Direct inhalation or ingestion of molybdenum and its oxides should be avoided.[79][80]OSHA regulations specify the maximum permissible molybdenum exposure in an 8-hour day as 5 mg/m3. Chronic exposure to 60 to 600 mg/m3 can cause symptoms including fatigue, headaches and joint pains.[81]

26. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Originally Posted by Tofty
Cheapness is not generally a consideration i have when making lights, especially not with my solid silver one.
Not to burst your bubble, but Fred is not 3D printing lights. And he has delved into materials a bit more complicated metallurgically speaking than simple silver.

Is the Ti Pyramid light you (Fred) are building also a AA/14500 sized light?

Have you made any progress with that one?

Please don't spin any metals which create toxic dust particles. I would like you to keep spinning a long time yet.

obi

27. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

Originally Posted by persco
\$110 to ship a \$150 rod of molybdenum? That's a bit high...
It was only \$20 to a US destination.

Originally Posted by PhotonFanatic
Well, I'd want a lot more info on what is actually being sold--like knowing what alloy it might be.

Not to mention--from Wikipedia:
Molybdenum dusts and fumes, which can be generated by mining or metalworking, can be toxic, especially if ingested (including dust trapped in the sinuses and later swallowed). Low levels of prolonged exposure can cause irritation to the eyes and skin. Direct inhalation or ingestion of molybdenum and its oxides should be avoided. OSHA regulations specify the maximum permissible molybdenum exposure in an 8-hour day as 5 mg/m3. Chronic exposure to 60 to 600 mg/m3 can cause symptoms including fatigue, headaches and joint pains.
I had not realised that it could be so hazardous. Believe it or not i was not trying to kill you, merely raising a discussion point.

Originally Posted by Obijuan Kenobe
Not to burst your bubble, but Fred is not 3D printing lights. And he has delved into materials a bit more complicated metallurgically speaking than simple silver.
You comments make it sound like i have in some way belittled Fred's achievements. Far from it.
My point was that by using silver rather than something like copper, the cost is greatly increased while the benefits are only slightly improved, i therefore don't worry too much about cost if it's a project of interest to me.
I did it because i can, because i wanted to see what would happen and because nobody else has done something similar.
I've always felt that Fred makes lights for the same reasons and they are impressive for these very reasons.

The light i mentioned is actually made of sterling silver, usually a blend of at least 92.5% silver and the remainder being copper.
This provides a desirable strength increase to the otherwise overly soft silver.....gosh metallurgy.

I also have not exclusively made torches by 3D printing them, i have turned many metal types in my time and look forward to opportunities to try new ones.
One of my next projects will be a 365nm UV light with a magnesium body.
Now the snap reaction would be that this is a stupid idea and a great way of starting an uncontrollable fire but funnily enough the very reason i deem magnesium suitable for torches is the same reason why it won't burst into flames: good thermal conductivity and excellent machinability.
Large chips, cut cleanly won't get hot enough to combust and the body itself would have to be thrown in a furnace before it started to burn.
It also anodises which will allow some level of corrosion resistance.
Will it work? Who knows, but i'll enjoy finding out.

All i know is that i really want to have a go at working with tungsten and if your earlier comments were to the effect that i won't be able to then we have a point of disagreement.

28. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

obi: Yes, the Tungsten AA will use 14500 Lithium-ion batteries. The machining is pretty much done on the light; I'm waiting for a custom driver to arrive and hope to put my new driver, the PICcolo, in the light.

Tofty: When you posted that Moly rod for sale, and I saw the price, I was quite excited, but not so much after I took a quick look at Wikipedia. I love trying new metals, but I've also learned, for instance, that one shouldn't order, say, a bar of Tungsten Carbide and expect to make anything out of it with your home shop manual lathe.

I turned magnesium, and you are right--little danger of a fire, but I'd still be prepared. Same caveat even for Ti, actually.

As for silver, I made this light some time ago. Really an incredibly nice feeling light in ones hand.

That was hand hammered to create that shimmering look. Wasn't my most exciting light, but a fun project.

29. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

I certainly wouldn't try and use tungsten carbide.
The bucking bar you used for the first tungsten light wouldn't have been carbide.
Most likely a high purity, high density alloy which is what i will be looking out for.
In fact since i can get one of those bars for around £110 delivered i may well consider making some very hard wearing bezel rings.

30. ## Re: WIP -- Tungsten AA Light

The bucking bar was probably 90% W and the rest iron and nickel.

Keep in mind that 100% W is fairly difficult to machine. The rod that I bought for the AA light is 95% W, with the balance nickel and iron, and is definitely harder to work with than the 90% alloy--but certainly workable with carbide inserts.

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