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Thread: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

  1. #1
    peter yetman's Avatar
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    Default Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Hopefully Dan won't mind me posting this here, if it's a problem I'm sure we can move it.

    This will be an ongoing thread that I'll update as I do the work.

    Here's some of the bits. There's a complete reflector next to the bored one.



    I ordered a spare reflector and bezel from Unique Titanium.
    I took the reflector to my local machine shop and asked him to bore out the reflector into a tube. The optic and MCPCB are 20mm and he managed to bore the tube out to 19.5mm and still keep some strength in the walls.



    With a bit of work with some abrasive paper I smoothed the inside walls of the tube and made the MCPCB a little smaller. The optic fitted snug into the end of the tube.
    Unless I'm mistaken there is a front and back to the tube there seems to be about one more thread at the front, that's why I marked that end with some red cord.
    I fitted the optic to the MCPCB and they both slip into the tube with a tight friction fit.




    Next I ordered some 20mm aluminium spacers 5mm thick and some washers 1.5mm thick to use as a heatsink shelf for the MCPCB.

    The 5mm aluminium spacer is just right, after a slight slim down it is now a tight friction fit inside the tube, just have to cut two slots for the wires to the MCPCB.



    Here it is with the holes cut for the wires.



    The MCPCB has arrived back from CRX, look what a lovely job he's done. He's even polished the back of the board.



    I'm expecting the Twisty to arrive in a few days, it's sitting in UK Customs at the mo......

    I've soldered the wires to the board, put Knapton tape around the inside of the tube, added Thermal Paste between the board and heatsink.



    And it works.....



    Because the module that I've built has to be screwed into the host, the wires need to be 50mm or so long to take up the twisting. I'm a little concerned that there may not be enough room behind the module to accomodate them. Much as I'd like to use the 5mm heatsink, if I use a 1.5mm washer there should be enough room. I've slimmed down a washer and fitted it, just in case. I'll know when the host arrives.



    I've decided to go with the 1.5mm washer for the heatsink, it does give me enough room to coil about 50mm of the two wires in the recess. With that and a little room inside the head I should have enough slack.
    I fixed it in place with green Loctite, cleaned off all excess and then bonded it in place with thermal resin.



    The Twisty host has arrived.





    I did play with it for a bit, just enough to allow me to realise that the tint was far too cool for me and that while the secondary red emitter was a good idea, I'd never use it. I had a secondary red on my WASP and disabled it.
    Here'e a shot of the Osram emitter before I removed it.


    It was just a matter of desoldering the contacts and lifting the emitter off.
    The negative tag is the one nearest the large Earth bolt.


    The solder tags seem quite fragile. I initially connected my new module with slightly longer leads than I wanted, just in case. It all functioned perfectly so I shortened the leads and resoldered them. The solder tags seemed to just dissolve, and I ended up managing to connect the positive lead through the heatsink shelf and soldering the negative to the ground wire connected to the large Earth bolt.
    The excess leads fit well into the void under the module, given that I hope to never have to mess with the wiring again I'm going to use medium threadlocker on the lower threads of the module so i can only unscrew the top part to access the optic and lens.


    When I had the head apart I was able to measure the voltage and current before I soldered the second wire.
    Voltage on High 3.4 volts - Current on High 1.6 amps.
    On High I would guess the light puts out about 500Lm compared to my OR Nichia Triple on 30% this step-down after 10 seconds to a more sensible 250 ish lumens.



    The programming we know, is a bit of a nightmare on this light and I've managed to make the first and second positions the same, so I now cannot program the light by toggling between Low and High. I'm now attempting a Factory Reset which in proving a pain. I will get there, it's just a matter of time.

    I managed the Factory reset eventually, once or twice conventionally and with better results with this rig.
    I bet Henry has one of these…


    There's something about the emitters on high that causes the thermal protection to kick in before the driver has reset. It seems in this configuration I'm not going to be able to reset the light.
    Now I know that the front end is a success, I'm now going to remove Henry's Driver (sorry) and put in an Icarus from Prometheus.
    Here's a few pictures during the removal and clean up….







    I'm going to make the shelf for the Icarus driver out of 22mm copper pipe and two copper washers. The larger washer has a 16mm hole in it for the driver to sit on and the smaller one has a 17mm hole so it sits around the driver and will contact the negative edge of the driver to the top of the body tube, completing the circuit.


    I'll glue them together with Thermal Resin.
    Here's the finished copper shelf.



    The wires go to the gold pad in the centre and the pad on the right. There's an "L" between them and a + next to the center one and a - next to the side one.. I didn't notice this and wasted a lot of time having soldered to the outside ring and to the right hand pad with the +ve. Fortunately the driver survived.



    Here's the Icarus Driver mounted in the shelf.


    And finally the whole thing fitted inside the head.



    The driver is a nice tight fit inside the 17mm copper washer, but I was getting intermittent flashes on the lower levels. I've made a small solder bridge between the outor ring on the driver and the washer. I now have solid light.


    So I have my complete light. At the moment it's set to the default settings as trying to get the driver programmed with a Twisty is next to impossible, a bit like the original driver.
    I'll live with it for a bit and then I'll make up a clicky rig to do the job.

    Having learnt the programming using a clicky rig, it it now very easy to program it using the twisty. I'm very impressed with the Icarus driver, I shall use it again.

    Conclusions (for my reference as much as yours)

    Consider anodising the host to make it pretty and to avoid earthing problems.

    Solder the driver to the 17mm copper ring before building the shelf. Less heatsink to help soldering.

    Glue a 21mm i/d around the 17mm washer to stop any solder bridging the gap.



    Thanks for looking.
    P
    Last edited by peter yetman; 06-08-2019 at 08:16 AM.

  2. #2
    Modernflame's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Thanks for sharing this, Peter. You've got me thinking about buying a triple. Is that optic sandwiched between two O-rings, like they come from HDS?
    “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

  3. #3
    peter yetman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    The optic is flush against the original lens which has an O ring between it and the bezel. I may try and use an O ring between the optic and the lens later on.
    P

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    Flashaholic* emarkd's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Great project! Can't wait to see how this turns out!

    One word of warning, which you may have already thought of -- when you have to slightly shrink an mcpcb like that its easy to accidentally expose the conductive layer's edge, leading to the possibility of shorting to the solid core of the board or to the wall of the host. Test before powering up

    Looking forward to your updates.

  5. #5
    peter yetman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Thanks for the warning, I've filed the solder pads back slightly from the edge to save them shorting to the tube. Also I've checked that they aren't shorting to the base. I may well paint a little nail varninh arounf the edge of the pads too.
    Keep the ideas coming, this isn't a rush job.
    P

  6. #6
    Flashaholic* Lithium466's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Use some liquid electrical tape or Kapton tape instead of nail polish.
    Nice job so far! Now I want to do that to my twisty! What driver are you going to use?

  7. #7
    peter yetman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Thanks, I'll do that.
    The driver is my next decision.
    I wanted to retain the battery board, but at the moment I can't see a way inside without destroying it. In the first instance I'll rig it with Henry's driver still in place.
    I haven't worked out how much current his driver supplies (100Lm Twisty) but it's probably not enough. I only want to run this at a maximum of 300Lm, so I'll need a programable driver.
    H17f comes to mind, I'm also tempted by Jason's Icarus, I know it's expensive and I can't see that it does much more than Dr Jones', but the warranty and after sales may be worth it.
    P

  8. #8
    Flashaholic* Lithium466's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    I guess around 1000mA on high mode...or something like 3,6W

    H17f has my vote, Dr Jones is a great guy and will provide support if needed (at least in my experience).

    Is/was your Twisty a high CRI ?

  9. #9
    peter yetman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Don't know if it's Hi Cri, but it's the lovleyest warm light that I've seen. My Nichia 219B does highlight Red a little more, but overall It's very pleasing.
    Thanks, I'll try with the Henry Driver first, if it does and amp it may well be enogh for me. I do like the way the switch works.

    P

  10. #10
    Flashaholic* Lithium466's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Must be the Seoul high CRI then
    If you don't use it, don't throw it away, send it to me haha!

  11. #11
    peter yetman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Yes, I don't know if I'm willing to remove it.
    It'll stay safe, but you'll be in my thoughts.
    P

  12. #12
    Flashaholic* Lithium466's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.


  13. #13
    peter yetman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    I spent an interesting afternoon yesterday trying to reflow the Triple MCPCB.
    I've got the hang of doing single ones now, but three at a time needs more practice.
    I posted the board and emitters to CRX who is very kindly going to reflow them for me.
    Also, just fitted the heatsink, pics in first post.
    P
    Peter's shopping list:- HDS / Oveready 170N Exec/LE and an Oveready V4 Nichia Drop In. Otherwise I'm content. Want want want, that's me.

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    Modernflame's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Better safe than sorry. I also applaud the decision to keep the existing driver. Very curious to know how much light you get @ 1A.
    “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

  15. #15
    peter yetman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Yes, I'm curious too. The driver in this is very simple, but it works perfectly.
    Looking at the output charts for the BOSS, 1 amp to 3 Nichias should give me a reasonable output. Can't remember off hand what to expect but I feel confident.
    Aslo, I'm not going to touch this particular Twisty, as it's just right for me. I shall wait for however long it takes to pick up another.
    P
    Peter's shopping list:- HDS / Oveready 170N Exec/LE and an Oveready V4 Nichia Drop In. Otherwise I'm content. Want want want, that's me.

  16. #16
    Modernflame's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    These are Nichia B, right?
    “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

  17. #17
    peter yetman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Yes, the groovy ones.
    P
    Peter's shopping list:- HDS / Oveready 170N Exec/LE and an Oveready V4 Nichia Drop In. Otherwise I'm content. Want want want, that's me.

  18. #18
    peter yetman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    The reflowed MCPCB should be here in a couple of days, and a host will be here in about 10.
    Updates to the top post soon.
    I'm getting quite excited.
    P

  19. #19
    Modernflame's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    “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

  20. #20
    ven's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Awesome stuff P, look forward to the finished twisty.

  21. #21
    peter yetman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Quote Originally Posted by Modernflame View Post
    I think I was a school with him!
    Updated first post.
    P

  22. #22

    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Great mod! Are the diodes in series or parallel?

  23. #23
    peter yetman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Parallel, it's a standard Noctigon.
    P

  24. #24

    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Thank you, hope that at the lowest levels everything will glow

  25. #25
    Modernflame's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Quote Originally Posted by peter yetman View Post
    I've soldered the wires to the board, put Knapton tape around the inside of the tube, added Thermal Paste between the board and heatsink.
    And it works.....
    It's alive! Alive! Arrrhhhh, now I know it is really possible!!
    “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

  26. #26

    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    By the way, when do you get a flashlight, insert this drilled reflector into it, please, we wonder how this option will shine in the form of a mule

    p.s
    If you find a small single TIR, which fit into this drilled reflector, you can get a great thrower. True too narrow a beam will kill the EDC application. Yesterday I uncovered my e2d and decided to walk with him at dusk after the rain, it is hell.. if i look at the spot then night vision collapses and I see nothing beyond the beam and eyes get tired, if I look beyond the beam, I see it badly and fall into the pits and puddles and stumble. But this happens only at twilight time.

  27. #27
    Flashaholic* thermal guy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Great build my friend!
    If i had one day left to live i would want to be at my workplace.Because every day is like a frickin eternity.

  28. #28
    peter yetman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Quote Originally Posted by desert.snake View Post
    By the way, when do you get a flashlight, insert this drilled reflector into it, please, we wonder how this option will shine in the form of a mule
    I guess I could have built a mule, but at the outputs that I'm intending to use, I think the light would be too dispersed to be useful.
    P

  29. #29

    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    How does one determine the gauge wire of the driver leads?

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  30. #30
    peter yetman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion of an Ra Twisty to a Nichia Triple.

    Dunno, I'm using AWG24 which is what most people use, I think. It's rated for 3.5 amps according to this...
    https://www.powerstream.com/Wire_Size.htm

    Plus, any bigger and it would be a s*d to solder to the MCPCB.
    I'm only intending this to be run at 500Lm max, more like 300. Which is why I think the HDS Driver will do the job. I don't want a Barnburner as I want to stay true to Henry's philosopy and have a light that's going to keep on going.
    P

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