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Thread: Project HAMM3RHEAD

  1. #1
    Flashaholic* sween1911's Avatar
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    Default Project HAMM3RHEAD

    This is what Iím calling my home-brew Surefire M3 head.

    Drawing on the architecture of Customlites excellent Nailbender D36 of which I have two, Iím building a similar style module. I have a couple XHP50ís (6V version) from my Gladius mods, Iím going to put one of those in front of a Dr. Jones X17Fx programmable driver from mtnelectronics. I have a couple 16650ís to power it with using a spacer, until I get the M3 body bored to take 18650ís in the future. Iím using the standard P60 base and borrowing a reflector from a Nailbender module until I can source additional reflectors or a better base/reflector combo that fits and works in the M3 bezel.

    It will be interesting to see the beam pattern of the XHP50 behind that reflector.

    Will update with pics and progress when the driver gets here.
    Last edited by sween1911; 12-22-2018 at 07:16 PM.
    Dean Venture: "I'll get the flashlights!"
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  2. #2

    Default Re: Project M3-50

    Interested in seeing the outcome of this. I would love to see the classic M3 updated with modern led and drivers.
    Who needs to see the light at the end of the tunnel when you have friends on CPF?
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  3. #3

    Default Project M3-50

    Mr.Sween this sure sounds as great project! Subscribed
    I was thinking about something similar but my M3 body is in the machine shop at the moment

  4. #4

    Default Re: Project M3-50

    This will be interesting, certainly!
    It would be challenging for any machinist to bore out such a long body
    Have torch, will travel.

  5. #5
    Flashaholic* sween1911's Avatar
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    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    Quick Status: Got it wired up!

    -For some reason, it doesnít like the XHP50ís I have. Theyíre 6V versions. Iím thinking this is a current vs. voltage issue. Weird since a 15-year old Blackhawk Gladius runs an XHP50 beautifully at less mah. Gotta remember though, thatís a 6V light. Iím still learning. Any suggestions for an LED to try? Iím thinking maybe an SST40.

    Fortunately, I had a fresh XML2 on a Noctigon in my mod supplies that works perfectly with this board.

    The modes and programming in the Dr. Jones driver board are insane. Still figuring it out. Biggest thing for me is having a mode group just for tactical single-mode high output with the ability to get into the programming menu and turn on utility multi-mode. This thing is gonna cook on an 18650. I contacted a local machine shop for an estimate for boring out and they didnt think it would be an issue.

    By the way, I christen thee HAMM3RHEAD.
    Last edited by sween1911; 12-22-2018 at 09:47 PM.
    Dean Venture: "I'll get the flashlights!"
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  6. #6
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    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    An H17Fx wonít work with a 6V LED. 3V only.

  7. #7
    Flashaholic* sween1911's Avatar
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    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    Had to file the edges of the board slightly to get it to seat in the P60 base.




    Last edited by sween1911; 12-23-2018 at 02:58 PM.
    Dean Venture: "I'll get the flashlights!"
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  8. #8
    Flashaholic* sween1911's Avatar
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    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    Quote Originally Posted by staticx57 View Post
    An H17Fx wonít work with a 6V LED. 3V only.
    Ah ha, thanks. Thereís a Qlite board made for 2 Li-ions that can run an XHP50, Iíll hafta try that bad boy.

    Funny, after my Gladius mods (Iíve done a few for people on here and a few other places) I used only the reflector from the Mountain Electronics P60 kit. Iíve got a bag of just the bases and springs left. Now I can use those for this. Canít find more of the matching reflector though. Iíll have to swap the one I have back and forth until I find an alternative.

    As for power, I have 2 17500ís that are a few years old. Whatís another good cell I can use as two in a series to power it (at least for right now in an unbored 3-cell body)?
    Last edited by sween1911; 12-24-2018 at 06:51 PM.
    Dean Venture: "I'll get the flashlights!"
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  9. #9

    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    Enercig 16500 800mah. It can deliver 10+A but not so good capacity. Iíd go with boring so battery options are increased then (Panasonic 18500 2000mah 5-6A)

    Was thinking to order one D36 from Customlites to try something similar.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    If you are looking for something more advanced than the qlite driver and are ok with running 2S all the time look up the Texas Avenger series of drivers. type "texas avegner driver" into google.

  11. #11
    Flashaholic* sween1911's Avatar
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    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    Quote Originally Posted by staticx57 View Post
    If you are looking for something more advanced than the qlite driver and are ok with running 2S all the time look up the Texas Avenger series of drivers. type "texas avegner driver" into google.
    Thanks, Iíll check that out.

    Backpedalling a bit, I swapped a P60 reflector on the unit and put it in my 6P with the 16650 and itís a handy little powerhouse. Holding out for the driver to run the XHP50 in the M3. Right now running my trusty Nailbender 1-mode Nichia unit in my M3 with the two 17500ís.

    For some reason, using the single 16650 Li-ion takes more force when using a standard Surefire LOTC, either alone in the 6P or with a spacer in the M3. The connection is cranky unless I press the tailcap down harder. I gotta use a McClicky for positive activation. With the 17500ís and the Nichia module (itís a high-voltage, I didnít want to discount primaries) its effortless and I can run it with the original LOTC like itís an old incan on CR123ís. It would be cool if I could get the positive terminal extended into the body somehow to eliminate the need for a spacer cell.

    Also ordering a UCLp AR lens from Flashlightlens for the M3 head to see how it fits with the module. I put one in my Fenix TK35 that I bought with the original lens cracked and itís been great so far.
    Last edited by sween1911; 01-08-2019 at 11:07 AM.
    Dean Venture: "I'll get the flashlights!"
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  12. #12
    Flashaholic* sween1911's Avatar
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    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    Update: Got a line on the corresponding D36 reflector that threads onto the P60 base. Have a few on order from the Ďbay. Also just got the lens in from Flashlightlens. 38mm x 2.9mm in their awesome acrylic UCLp AR material. Itís light and tough and fits perfectly.
    Dean Venture: "I'll get the flashlights!"
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  13. #13
    Flashaholic* sween1911's Avatar
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    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    Got the driver and my new reflectors last night and wired it up.

    - I wanted to try a 1A driver first. As usual, mtnelectronics has fantastic customer service and ridiculously fast shipping. I wanted decent runtime and the ability to use primaries in a pinch so wanted to keep the current at a safe level. The XHP50 is plenty bright at 1A for the M3ís mission, but underdriven. Will try the 2A driver at some point. Since 3 CR123ís can run the old MN11 high output lamp, which some research tells me pulls 2.5A, I think itís in safe territory. One of my goals in a light is flexibility and useability. For this project, I donít want 3000 lumens for 15 minutes on special batteries, I like some flexibility and utility.

    - The reflector I found on the Ďbay is the perfect part. Mirror smooth, correct 36mm diameter, and threads right onto the standard P60 base. I can send item# by PM if youíre interested.

    - The XHP50 is classic for the gross donuthole in a standard reflector, I was expecting it since I encountered it doing Gladius mods. Had to stack 3 reflector gaskets superglued together for proper standoff. The bottom two I trimmed off the reflector tabs with an xacto knife. Which is actually good as it provides plenty of room for the soldered connections on either side.

    - Needs a longer positive terminal spring on the back of the driver. Connections a little iffy unless I stretch the center spring a little. Iíll have to get some good robust slightly longer ones and solder in a bypass.
    Last edited by sween1911; 01-08-2019 at 04:27 PM.

  14. #14
    Flashaholic* sween1911's Avatar
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    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    Progress update...

    Lessons learned:

    - The 6-volt XHP50 at 2A is just too much to expect out of an unbored 3-cell form factor. Makes me wonder what the current is in the Lumensfactory Mini-turbohead XHP50.2 Gotta be more than 1A, less that 2A... maybe 1.5?

    - ďFlossingĒ the XHP50, an idea pioneered by user pc_light (http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...-die-Artifacts) is a fantastic idea. Works great to eliminate artifacts is a big multi-die LED. I did it to mine with a strip of wet/dry 800 grit sandpaper and itís awesome. I swapped the XHP50 back into the 1A driver and itís pretty decent if a bit floody.

    - The original Nichia model I got from Nailbender is still my favorite. Perfect tint, just right output, works like a champ on two 17500ís or three primaries. Flexible, robust, hard to improve on. I may try the 2A driver with a Nichia.

    - Since I had all my stuff apart, I tried putting an XHP50 in a Fenix TK35 XML. Didnít work, but since I had it apart, I swapped a nice neutral XM-L2 in there.
    Last edited by sween1911; 01-13-2019 at 03:08 PM.
    Dean Venture: "I'll get the flashlights!"
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  15. #15

    Default Project HAMM3RHEAD

    Nice update! Thx for sharing your progress.

    Have you ever thought about SST50?
    KD have them in 4000K range...

  16. #16
    Flashaholic* sween1911's Avatar
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    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    The SST50 or SST40 is my next thing to try. I think I need to stay in the 3V range.
    Dean Venture: "I'll get the flashlights!"
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  17. #17

    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    Thatís what i was thinking. 3V buck drivers are easier to find.

  18. #18
    Flashaholic* sween1911's Avatar
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    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    Got my 1.2A driver from Kaidomain last night, put it behind an XHP50 that I "flossed" to eliminate the multi-die artifact.

    Runs great on (2) 17500's...



    That's maybe 100 feet away in my backyard.

    Oddly enough, I took the 2A driver that I tried to use with the XHP50 and plopped a fresh SST-40 onto it, which should handle 2A with no problem. It ran real bright for minute and then I saw smoke (!) and it went low, so I shut it off. I think it got damaged from the previous attempt.
    Last edited by sween1911; 01-29-2019 at 08:37 AM.
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  19. #19
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    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    i may be wrong but with the XHP50 being a 6v led, and the SST-40 being a 3v... the driver you tried to run the SST-40 fried the LED. im impressed it didnt instantly kill it.

  20. #20
    Flashaholic* sween1911's Avatar
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    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    Quote Originally Posted by tab665 View Post
    i may be wrong but with the XHP50 being a 6v led, and the SST-40 being a 3v... the driver you tried to run the SST-40 fried the LED. im impressed it didnt instantly kill it.
    No, it was a buck driver with a... uh... let me check the description "as long as the input voltage = led forward voltage + ~0.5V"

    Okay, that did it! LOL! Thanks for the sanity check. Again with the volts and amps.
    Last edited by sween1911; 01-29-2019 at 12:22 PM.
    Dean Venture: "I'll get the flashlights!"
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  21. #21
    Flashaholic pc_light's Avatar
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    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    @swen1911, nice mod, looks like the XHP50 resulted in a good balance of flood and throw. I have a XHP70 in P60 size that is wall-of-light, I might have to try a XHP50 in that head to compare.
    "may you live light and phosphor" - Mr. Spark

  22. #22

    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    Mr.Sween that is great update! Thanks for sharing it with us. Iím still waiting for electronics to finish ďyourĒ mode
    BTW youíre lucky that SST40 is still running. Built like a tank!

  23. #23
    Flashaholic* sween1911's Avatar
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    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    Update: The M3 ďHAMM3RHEADĒ module is still going strong. I have two pair of Keepower 17500ís Iíve been cycling through. My next build will be to source a 17mm driver with the awesome guppydrv software similar to the Dr. Jones module I transplanted into my 6P, only one with a Zener mod I can use to crank out the 6 volts for the XHP50. The infinite programming combinations combined with the ability to lock it on single high or turbo output is a great option to have.

    Iíve also contacted a local machine shop for boring options.
    Last edited by sween1911; 05-16-2019 at 01:11 PM.
    Dean Venture: "I'll get the flashlights!"
    Hank Venture: "And I'll get the astronaut Ice Cream!"

  24. #24

    Default Re: Project HAMM3RHEAD

    Thanks for update! I totally lost my guidence, got all the parts except Zener driver and got distracted with other crap. Need to pull my self together and carry on!


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