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Thread: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

  1. #91
    Flashaholic wosser's Avatar
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    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Hot blueing would look interesting I think. It is a tricky thing to do consistently across a batch unless you can do them all at the same time (temperatures and immersion time are important). Try it on a few rejected parts.
    17 is 11, 11 is 6, 6 is 3 and 3 is none. Also it's good to have some backups.

  2. #92

    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Thanks for chiming in Wosser.
    And thank you for the warning although i am aware of the at least some if the issues. So yes… Testing first on rejects

    LOL! Why do i keep doing this to myself

  3. #93

    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Yes, I'm still following along, and no I don't know anything about hot blueing, or machining for that matter, but my old eyes tell me this project is really something special! And that really means, "I like what I see!" I think the idea of plating is neat but not really necessary on this project, which means two things; One, your going to do it anyway, just because of the challenge and two, you know everyone here wants to see what you can accomplish. Now the challenges really begin, only ten lights and so many choices, let's see, so that's copper, silver, nickel , chrome, zinc, cadmium, brass, gold, rhodium, and of course platinum.... Allright, that's an easy ten for you, not much of a challenge, I know! But you can always add in en plating as well.........
    Last edited by Zandar; 05-26-2019 at 05:41 AM.

  4. #94

    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Haahhh!!!!
    That’s brilliant. I believe that qualifies as a tease

    And as always… thank you for following along.

  5. #95

    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Quote Originally Posted by AER-Lights View Post
    Haahhh!!!!That’s brilliant. I believe that qualifies as a tease And as always… thank you for following along.
    My pleasure, and after do consideration I think mine should be plated with platinum. Yes platinum the famous metal of catalytic converters everywhere!
    Last edited by Zandar; 05-26-2019 at 06:15 AM.

  6. #96

    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    These r looking great, hoping that I don’t miss them when they r ready to go....!

  7. #97

    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    @ egg.
    Thank you!
    Don’t worry about it.
    I figure i’ll give you guys a heads up on when they’re released. And a proper one at that. Something along the lines of a week.

    @ Zandar.
    Be careful what you wish for.
    I will do a platinum plated light if you’ll buy it

  8. #98

    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Great, I'll need two then, one for me and one for my friend egginator1!

  9. #99

    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    @ Zandar
    This being a challenge i obviously had to look into it and i have a funny feeling that you’ll find the price unreasonable
    The amount of kit i have to get in order to do that with any fair chance of success isn’t pretty.
    There’s some technical “babble” that needs to be in order for this to work on a flashlight such as a predictable thickness of the plating, purity etc.

    And last but not least you’d think i’m German right… but no

  10. #100

    Nana Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Well, I guess if were forced to, we can settle on "trash metals", like copper and brass and, gold and silver or dare I say it, titanium! But what a disappointment that will be! And here I thought you wanted to distinguish yourself from all the other start up builders. What happended to all that Scottish inventivness?
    Last edited by Zandar; 05-28-2019 at 12:05 PM.

  11. #101
    Flashaholic wosser's Avatar
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    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Quote Originally Posted by AER-Lights View Post
    The amount of kit i have to get in order to do that with any fair chance of success isn’t pretty.
    Which is why outsourcing is a thing
    17 is 11, 11 is 6, 6 is 3 and 3 is none. Also it's good to have some backups.

  12. #102
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    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Looking good!!

    If you want I can cerakote one for you in Midnight bronze

  13. #103

    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Quote Originally Posted by TailoredEDC View Post
    Looking good!!

    If you want I can cerakote one for you in Midnight bronze
    I like the sound of that!

  14. #104

    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Warning!!! Rant incoming

    But what a disappointment that will be!
    And yes i saw the "teaser emoji thingie"
    So… how does one respond to that?

    First off i appreciate what you’re trying to do. Let’s call it a “nudge” based on the fact that i’m a sucker for most good challenges i’m presented with. Which by the way is a blessing and a curse but you already know this.
    Having said that it made me stop for a moment and think about the direction this project is taking. The thought in this thread in relation to the small series run was to ask you guys and get as much input as possible and run with that to whatever degree is feasible.

    I could take Wossers advise and outsource it but to me that would defeat the purpose of this run. In the future it may very well be the way to move forward as a general strategy as this would leave me time to develop and prototype new things while still being able to offer actual lights to you guys which off cause is on my mind but to me the purpose of this run is still an elaborate experiment in can i actually do this.

    The second thing this has made me realize is that at least from my understanding most of you guys actually want to see these lights in Titanium, Mokume Gane, Zirconium and whatever really exotic material you can lay your eyes on which at least initially leaves me with a choice.

    I can invest in the kit, time and materials to do plating in a number of metals offering you guys a wide variety in “bandaids” to the problem. (which by the way would delay the release of these lights)
    Or i can finish the run and make sure this doesn’t become yet another project that was never finished and then turn my attention to investing the time and kit in adding titanium to the repertoire.
    And i must admit i’m leaning towards option two as this seems to have more of a future.

    Don’t get me wrong. I was the one asking the question initially and i highly appreciate your input. Was it not for that i may very well not have gone through this thought process

    One last note on this. The thing is… I could do platinum on the cheap. I believe i have found a way but i wouldn’t be in control of the process. Meaning even if it looked right and shiny which it properly wont i would not be able to control the thickness of the layer deposited and as a result it might simply rub of and i won’t release that as a “product”.
    On the other hand i have no problem releasing these “in the white” e.g. uncoated. Leaving you guys with the option of choosing any finish you can do on your own or through collaboration.

    As always. Thank you guys for you inputs, insights and support.
    I highly appreciate it.

  15. #105
    ninemm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Hey there AER - I leave for a month or two and my what progress! Looks like you've come quite a ways in the production. Hopefully the parts (glass, cap, etc) don't cause too much strife. As for the metals or coatings or whathaveyou..what about a simple beadblast or tumbled finish? Beadblast would help with grip, tumbling would be a bit harder/more resistant to scratches. Just a thought. Leaving them pristine is also a good option to get them to market quickly. I think they'd look pretty cool if cerakoted or some such by the owners afterward.

    What are you thinking about for the electronics? Driver? LED? Or is that a bit too far off?

    Thanks for sharing your progress as always!

  16. #106

    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    @ Nine
    Thank you. and you’re welcome
    I considered bead blasting as well as i personally think the surface looks really cool but unfortunately it doesn’t solve the basic issue.
    Coating is a simple consequence of my material choice. They are made from steel and will rust if not coated/treated which is why i keep banging on about it.

    The reason i originally chose Nickel as plating is that as a material choice it’s pretty hard, abrasion and chemically resistant as well as being a fairly good conductor.
    I know i’m venturing into tech babble here and i’m by no means an expert on this but let me put it this way. There’s a general measurement for hardness of materials called Rockwell. The base steel the lights are made from is about 11 Rockwell C where the standard electro less Nickel plating i’m planning on is about 45. Just to give you a reference point normal 303 stainless steel which most of us consider pretty hard clocks in at about 19 on that same scale. And dare i say that platinum would be in the region of 0.3

    On to Drivers and LEDs.
    The plan at this point is to offer up two versions.

    The first one which i suspect by far being the most popular one is a combination of a “moonlight special” driver configured for moonlight (obviously) and a low and high setting combined with a Nichia 219C D240 High CRI 4000K LED.
    This particular setup was recommended to me by a focus group of one (you know who you are)

    Option two is much simpler.
    A direct drive 700ma driver combined with a CREE XP-G2 2700K LED.
    The reason for including option two is simply that in my personal opinion a flashlight should be simple. E.g. one mode and by today’s standard fairly low powered.
    You know… trying to find the fuse box when the house goes dark i don’t want to fiddle with my flashlight and get blinded by half a sun.
    That combined with the fact that as i have mentioned previously am a northern European and we like our color temperature soft
    Having said that i know i’m outnumbered about ten to one on this. Hence two options.

    Pre-status report:
    On the up side i managed to get the setup for cutting flats on the heads dialed in during the week.
    The not so cool part is that the cut isn’t as pretty as i would have liked it so there’s quite a bit of post processing to get them to where i want them to be.
    This is going to take a while


    I’ll let you know how i progress

  17. #107

    Nana Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Coat me, plate me, I don't care which, but for G-D's sake do something to protect me! I've heard what happens to flashlights that don't quite measure up and it's not pretty. Oh sure the humans say we're all created equal but what they don't say, is that we can be subjected to the same level of discrimination that they themselves practice on each other. It really is insidious, as we only exist based on the whims of these fickle and often capricious humans. First, through no fault of our own, were born into this dark world, and one of the creators sticks the spark of life, what they call a battery, into our private area and screws us back together and we're now alive and well, and we can now see. Yes we can do something the humans can't, we can actually light up the world around us. Through a process called illumination we get to emit light, kind of like what that big ball in the sky, the humans are always worshiping does . And this must be why we were created because the humans will carry us around everwhere and their always making us emit light by pressing in the special place and I don't really understand how it works but I always get this warm tingly feeling and then I just emit. And I must have gotten pretty good at it, because my human makes me do it all the time, even when the big ball is out doing it's business. Mind you, I don't mind, because it feels so good. In fact, every time I meet another creator and their offspring in a social setting, the humans invariably make us emit together. In the beginning I felt funny about doing this in such a public place, with someone I just met, but it makes the humans happy and now it just feels like the right thing to do. So I get to meet other creators and their children and we learn that we're each a little bit different. Often we find that some of us are more popular than the others, so much so, that we have what are called clones, made of us, that are identical to us except they often have a different spark of life inside or even a different skin color. Unfortunately this is where the trouble always begins, once some of us learn that there are others like them that are similar but look different on the outside they begin to feel insecure and often begin discriminating against these other lights. Pretty soon the lights begin to divide up into factions and the fighting begins. In my case, I don't want to fight, I just want to fit in and be like all the other lights but I can't, because I'm made of steel and without some form of protection, my kind in the end, always suffer from the horrible skin wasting disease called rust. And once you get it, it never really goes away. Oh there are treatments mind you, but no real cures and the best therapies can do right now is to prolong a life filled with skin peeling agony! Right now I'm a young and healthy and carefree light, but how long will that last? After all my human takes me to all sorts of strange places, even in the dead of night, where I often have to perform in less than ideal conditions with lights I barely know! Each time, it's a "roll of the dice" where I run the risk of exposing my body and emitter to any number of dreadful diseases. So please I beg you, protect me before it's too late and coat me or plate me so I can have a chance at a normal life. Don't let me become yet another light cut down in it's prime.
    Last edited by Zandar; 06-01-2019 at 09:54 AM.

  18. #108
    Flashaholic wosser's Avatar
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    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    @Zandar, -- Hard to respond to that, really.
    Last edited by wosser; 06-01-2019 at 11:46 AM.
    17 is 11, 11 is 6, 6 is 3 and 3 is none. Also it's good to have some backups.

  19. #109

    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    @ Zandar
    WOW!!!
    That actually took some effort. And for that alone i’m grateful
    I guess it’s a poem called “reflections of light”

    @ Wosser
    yep.


    Got half the heads cut today. We're still progressing.

  20. #110
    Unenlightened roadracer46's Avatar
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    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    I’m new to this thread... amazing stuff. Great progress. Excited to see how this will finish up.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  21. #111

    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    @ Roadracer
    Welcome!
    Thank you for letting me know that you’re following along and like what you see

    Status report:
    The flats on the heads are cut but need post processing which will take a while to put it mildly.
    I did get the cut quality up during the batch but never go to acceptable so they will all have to be sanded and polished by hand.
    And i lost one head due to me not paying attention GRRRRRR!

    Experiment:
    So… not having had the best of weekends on the project i decided to do an experiment.
    I figured i’d go and do the Old school hot bluing.
    From a technical point of view the result is horrid but... It kinda has this thing about it so i figured i’d share the result anyway.




    Live long and prosper

  22. #112

    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Wow that looks like a textured finish? I'm nor sure what it's supposed to look like but it definitely has a certain appeal to me. I'm just wondering how durable it would be? Keep up the good work, Zandar
    Last edited by Zandar; 06-03-2019 at 12:08 AM.

  23. #113
    Flashaholic wosser's Avatar
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    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Follow that bluing treatment with a short spell in a parts tumbler (10-20 mins maybe with some walnut shells and 1.6mm steel BBs) and I think that would look great.
    17 is 11, 11 is 6, 6 is 3 and 3 is none. Also it's good to have some backups.

  24. #114

    Smile Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Sorry for the late reply but i had to prioritize my day job.

    @ Zandar
    Thank you. A Wow is always highly appreciated
    I regards to what it should look like it shouldn’t be pitted and it should have a uniform color.
    It has a slight texture to it and it feels somewhere between a bead blast and an HA III anodizing. So.. a rougher/more textured version of an SF C2 Centurion. On top of that the “treatment” was a bit more aggressive than originally planned so it has this “built in” patina. Not unlike what you’d see on an old canon.

    Keep in mind that these pictures are close-ups and in the real world half the imperfections shown are not really noticeable unless you scrutinize the light.

    When it comes to durability it should hold up pretty well.
    It has to be oiled on occasion for the protection to work but that’s the nature of the beast.
    This is basically the way guns were done in the way old days and unless you dump it in the ocean e.g. expose it to saltwater it should hold up just fine. The surface may wear on the high spots / sharp edges but i actually think that a bit of wear on this particular light would make it look even better and it won’t be a problem from a technical point of view.
    Btw. Not many metals can stand up to saltwater

    @ Wosser
    That sounds like a great idea and i’d love to do that experiment too but unfortunately the “shop” doesn’t currently include either tumbler nor bead blasting capability.

    This particular light is basically a commission from a dear old friend of mine (his not really a flashlight guy) who for reasons i never really understood insisted it should be black.
    Fortunately he loves it in it’s current form so even though the experiment didn’t go to plan it all worked out well in the end.

    The Plan:
    The plan for this weekend is to make another head to replace the one i lost due to not paying attention and then lots of sanding flats by hand.
    As i believe i have alluded to earlier the depth of cut on the flats are even more critical than the depth of the dimples. The size of the flats are consistent coming off the machine but even a light sanding will make it bigger so i have to bring them into a consistent size which is a lot of work. A difference of a thousand of an inch shows.

    During the design i wondered why this form of flats isn’t common since in CAD it seems like an obvious way to do it. Well now i know
    Last edited by AER-Lights; 06-08-2019 at 12:37 AM.

  25. #115
    Flashaholic wosser's Avatar
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    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Get a transparent plastic lunchbox (the air-tight type with a rubber seal) and glue a round piece of wood to one side. Fill the lunchbox 25% full with crushed walnut shells and small steel BB's. Chuck the wooden piece into your lathe and set it running at 40 RPM - et voila you have a parts tumbler.

    Total cost $3.
    Last edited by wosser; 06-08-2019 at 04:50 AM.
    17 is 11, 11 is 6, 6 is 3 and 3 is none. Also it's good to have some backups.

  26. #116

    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Haaahhh
    Thank you.

    As with so many things in this project it’ll have to wait a bit but that i just have to give a try.

    I’m not really going to have anything even remotely exciting to show this week as the cleanup of the flats is taking forever. I’m currently at 2,5 and i must admit i’m bored out of my mind doing this so…
    If we do a second run this is definitely one of the things that has to get “fixed”

  27. #117
    Enlightened
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    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Really Nice to hear you are still cranking on!
    When removing tool marks I use a ocillating sander og the type use for general sanding.
    I have a Hitachi With 125mm diameter round sanding pad and I use 400grit. Just be careful on edges since it will round them if you apply too much pressure. Take it slow and finish it With sandpaper for a brushed look.
    This is a dimmer switch panel With 8 sliders I made for a customer.
    Last edited by TailoredEDC; 06-10-2019 at 11:21 PM.

  28. #118
    Enlightened
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    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    I see your time consuming work was not to finish it, but to get the correct size. My bad! I thought it was to remove the scratches.

  29. #119

    Default Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    @ TailoredEDC
    Thank you for your suggestion and the picture to prove your point
    Looks great by the way.
    And i’m still looking for your thread so if i missed it please let me know.

    Status report:
    So… this project has given me a thorough lesson in patience
    As well as emphasizing my conclusion from last week.
    If more are to come this HAS to be automated.

    Ignoring the fact that i have been bored beyond belief and my right shoulder is about to come off i’m going to call this part a success even though i have a slight bit of cleanup on a few of them.

    We now have ten flashlight frames (They’re not quite hosts yet) with six flats each.



    I also received the switches and boots but i’m going to order the boots from another place as i don’t like the ones i received. The “knurling” on the boots are not as “clean” as i’d like and i know from experience that these can be nicer.

    As always. Thank you guys and girls if there’s any among you for your support and advise during this project. It’s highly appreciated.

    Until next time

  30. #120

    Popcorn Re: Introducing Mockbug: The story of my first flashlight build.

    Well I don't have the experience for advice, but, I do like what I'm seeing, and what I'm seeing looks professional to me! Keep up the good work, Alex

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