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Thread: How To Install a Clip Under the Bezel of Your HDS Rotary

  1. #1
    Flashaholic* emarkd's Avatar
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    Default How To Install a Clip Under the Bezel of Your HDS Rotary

    I really thought this was already written up somewhere but I couldn't find it, so I thought I'd make a post we could point people to for this often-asked question.

    First things first -- Henry at HDS recommends against this. In fact he says you shouldn't do it. I respect that and want it known to anyone reading this. Doing this "mod" on your light may make it slightly less water resistant and it may be slightly weaker in the bezel area, but many of us have done this and never had an issue. Its still a very strong, very well sealed light, plus this "mod" is completely reversible so you can always "undo" it. Henry doesn't compromise, period, end of story. But I'm willing to compromise, to a very limited amount, for this much more useful carry arrangement. You make your own decisions, but just know that this is very much an unofficial and unsupported mod.

    Here's a couple of examples of the finished assembly, just so we all know the goal. I'm using Oveready clips on my lights and in these pics, but the Prometheus clip will work as well. I'd bet most universal 1" clips could be made to work, but I haven't tried them all.




    So here's the plan, step-by-step. Let's make this TiAlN-coated Oveready clip fit under the bezel of this Rotary:


    Here you can see how the head goes together. The middle part is the reflector. You want to put the clip above the reflector, touching the bezel. If you put it below, touching the head, it'll space the reflector up relative to the emitter and screw up the LED focus. Donut holes anyone?


    Another view of the parts here, fully disassembled.


    So now we hit our first snag. The clip doesn't fit. The inside diameter (ID) is too small. :/


    We can fix that. Hold the clip with a wet cloth so you don't overheat the metal or burn your hands. Then just gently grind it open inside using a Dremel. I also like to keep a small dish of water close by so I can dunk it if it starts to get hot. Heating the metal too much will cause it to change color, which may be cool if its what you want, but its easy to prevent with water if you don't.


    This is about the thickness you're shooting for. Keep your flashlight close by for test-fitting as you go, so you know when it fits. This one is done, aside from some deburring.


    It fits! Notice I've put it below the o-ring. In other words, remove the o-ring, set the clip in place, then put the o-ring back. That's because the o-ring sits in a groove in the bezel piece. It needs to be above the clip.


    Now for re-assembly of the bezel, and where we encounter our second little snag. We've now got extra internal space from the thickness of the added clip, because the bezel won't be screwing down as far as it used to. There's a small o-ring that goes between the reflector and the crystal glass. We need to replace this o-ring with something thicker to make up for the space the clip just added to the assembly.

    The original o-ring here is an N1x19. We need something of the same overall size, but with about 1mm more thickness. I
    've tried several sizes. 2x19s fit too, but I like these 2x18.5's the best. Here's a comparison:


    ...and here's that thicker o-ring, laid into the channel on the top of the reflector. Be sure to lube your o-rings, lightly. Dry o-rings are bad:

    Then just stack on your crystal and screw on the bezel, making sure the original stock o-ring is still in place above the glass. Just like it came apart. Here's the finished look:


    As you'd expect the new, larger o-ring is more visible below the crystal. Not much to be done about that, but I don't think it looks bad at all. I don't have a way to pressure-test these "modded" lights but in practice I've had zero issues, and my bezel-clipped Rotaries have been in all sorts of water, from pools to streams to oceans. Never a problem.




    And one parting shot of some of my favorites -- two Rotaries both modded like this, plus my favorite Clicky wearing the same clip under his tail.


    Fin. Any questions just ask!
    Last edited by emarkd; 07-19-2018 at 09:03 AM.

  2. #2
    peter yetman's Avatar
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    Default Re: How To Install a Clip Under the Bezel of Your HDS Rotary

    Thank you, that's gone in my "Repairs" folder.
    P

  3. #3
    Modernflame's Avatar
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    Default Re: How To Install a Clip Under the Bezel of Your HDS Rotary

    What a magnificent write up! I personally dislike pocket clips but this is a very valuable resource. Nice pics!
    “May it be a light to you in dark places, when all other lights go out.”
    J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

  4. #4

    Default Re: How To Install a Clip Under the Bezel of Your HDS Rotary

    Very nice write up!
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  5. #5
    Flashaholic TimeOnTarget's Avatar
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    Default Re: How To Install a Clip Under the Bezel of Your HDS Rotary

    I posted a tutorial in the Oveready forum.

    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...ation-tutorial

  6. #6
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    archimedes's Avatar
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    Default Re: How To Install a Clip Under the Bezel of Your HDS Rotary

    I don't have a good photo handy, but using one of the wide conical grinding stones instead (and applying this to alternate sides of the original hole) , helps to keep things centered.

    Can finish things off with a little deburring / chamfering / polishing at the very end, with a smaller bit, to neaten up the final product too.
    Last edited by archimedes; 07-19-2018 at 08:38 PM.
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  7. #7
    Flashaholic* emarkd's Avatar
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    Default Re: How To Install a Clip Under the Bezel of Your HDS Rotary

    Quote Originally Posted by TimeOnTarget View Post
    I posted a tutorial in the Oveready forum.

    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...ation-tutorial
    Yes, that's the one I remember. I even replied to it lol. Nice job on your write-up too!

  8. #8
    peter yetman's Avatar
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    Default Re: How To Install a Clip Under the Bezel of Your HDS Rotary

    I've been running my Tactical with the clip under the bezel for a week now, and just wanted to thank you for helping me like it a bit more.
    P

  9. #9
    Flashaholic Mr. LED's Avatar
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    Default Re: How To Install a Clip Under the Bezel of Your HDS Rotary

    Awesome, thanks for sharing. I’ve been looking into adding a rotary to my collection but a clip is essential to me.
    The darkness is afraid of us.
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  10. #10
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: How To Install a Clip Under the Bezel of Your HDS Rotary

    The Prometheus Ti clip may be my all-time favorite clip.
    I find myself leaving my Rotary at home and carrying my Clicky just because of the clip.
    If only there were a way to install the Ti clip on the Rotary so it could be carried bezel down, like the Clicky.
    Oveready Boss 35 & 70; Quark MKIII QK16L; LensLight Mini; HDS Rotary 325 XP-L, Clicky 170W; ZebraLight SC 600 MK III HI, SC600W, SC62W, SC60W, SC52W, SC51C, SC5W; EagleTac NW D25LC2 Tactical, NW D25LC2, NW D25A, NW D25C, DX30LC2 Clicky, DX3B Mini; Nitecore D10R2; Elzetta Alpha; Jaxman E3; Reylight Ti

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