Author Topic: Maglite LED Upgrades  (Read 1414 times)

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Offline Gammaray

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Maglite LED Upgrades
« on: October 19, 2016, 10:25:30 PM »
Hello everyone,  :)
 
I am looking to mod some C and D size Maglite flashlights using led. I have read quite a few things on doing this and was wondering if I can get some help or suggestions about what I want to do. I was considering using the Cree brand of emitters such as the XM-L2 T6-3B, XHP50 or even the XHP70. I see that there are a lot of drivers to choose from, so I may need advice as to which drivers would be the best for the Cree emitters. I do have a lathe, so I can make a good copper heat sink for the heat transfer. I am also wondering if I should purchase these emitter on a star sink pad? I would also like to have a couple of different options as far as the batteries are concerned. Perhaps use the 26650 protected cells, maybe use smaller 18650 in parallel in a battery holder and use 2 of these to run in series? What do you guys think? Any suggestions and opinions are greatly welcome! Thanks in advanced!

John G. 

Offline JohnnyMac

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Re: Maglite LED Upgrades
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2016, 06:24:04 PM »
Hey, John!  Welcome to the TFF family!  You are off to a good start being able to machine your own parts.  The best place to get drivers and LEDs is from MtnElectronics.com.  Richard, the owner is a great guy who knows his stuff and can answer any questions you  might hit him with during your build.  Cells can be had from his as well or from Illumn.com.

I'd go with a 2C and use unprotected IMR 26650 cells.  You will need to shorten the tail cap spring in the light for the cells to fit.  Either XHP50 or XHP70 would be perfect choices.  I'd go with XHP70 simply because I love that emitter and the massive output.  Get your LED premounted on the largest copper DTP star (Noctigon) you can fit.

I'd go with a FET+1 diver the most output and good regulation along with the Bistro UI.  It will have to be one designed for 2 cell in series.  This would be a great driver for your Mag: http://www.mtnelectronics.com/index.php?route=product/product&path=67_117&product_id=746

Keep us updated with your build as you do it.  Pics  are always appreciated!  :)

Offline Gammaray

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Re: Maglite LED Upgrades
« Reply #2 on: October 20, 2016, 07:05:50 PM »
Hello JohnnyMac! Thank you for the warm welcome, and also for the help and information! :) I have enough Maglites to do several mods, so I may do a 2-C size using the XHP50 and a 2-D size using the XHP70. I'm not exactly sure of what Kelvin temp I will go with. I really like a pure white light and not a yellowish or bluish tint.

I would like to ask you why would you recommend using unprotected cells? I have always been a little concerned with unprotected cells because of safety reasons I suppose. I have always used protected cells in the older flashlights I built years ago. Perhaps these unprotected cells are safe to use now days as more advancements have been made? I have been away from modifying flashlights for years now, so perhaps you can clear the air and tell me your thoughts on this!

I would also like to ask you your thoughts on purchasing emitters and drivers from China? I see that eBay has quite a few sellers from China offering these drivers and emitters, but I also know that you never know what you will get when you order from China! :( It really is pathetic that the U.S.A manufactures Cree emitters, but yet most every sale on eBay for these emitters are offered from China  >:(

I will take some photos and post here as I progress. I just want to make sure that I get everything correct before proceeding!

Thanks again for your reply! I'm sure I will be posting again soon.lol

John G.

Offline JohnnyMac

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Re: Maglite LED Upgrades
« Reply #3 on: October 20, 2016, 11:40:02 PM »
THere are some sellers in China that I might trust but I'd be leary of buying drivers form a Chinese Ebay seller. It's really hard to know that you are getting what you paid for.  If you buy from one of the two I listed you are guaranteed to get the best quality drivers and genuine Cree LEDs and they will perform exactly as claimed.

For cells, I don't care for protected cells.  I watch my battery charge and never run them too low.  Most of my lights are high performance lights that have huge amperage draw.  Protected cells would trip at 5-6A while an unprotected high-drain cell can push 20A.  Often times they are too long to fit in some lights as well.  I just don't care for them and haven't bought any since soon after starting my flashlight addiction.  If you use quality cells with a quality charger and don't run your lights completely dead you should have no issues with unprotected cells.  Just my $0.02

Cheers!
« Last Edit: October 20, 2016, 11:40:49 PM by JohnnyMac »

Offline quangtan

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Re: Maglite LED Upgrades
« Reply #4 on: November 07, 2017, 07:43:47 AM »
Hello JohnnyMac! Thank you for the warm welcome, and also for the help and information! :) I have enough Maglites to do several mods, so I may do a 2-C size using the XHP50 and a 2-D size using the XHP70. I'm not exactly sure of what Kelvin temp I will go with. I really like a pure white light and not a yellowish or bluish tint.

I would like to ask you why would you recommend using unprotected cells? I have always been a little concerned with unprotected cells because of safety reasons I suppose. I have always used protected cells in the older flashlights I built years ago. Perhaps these unprotected cells are safe to use now days as more advancements have been made? I have been away from modifying flashlights for years now, so perhaps you can clear the air and tell me your thoughts on this!

I would also like to ask you your thoughts on purchasing emitters and drivers from China? I see that eBay has quite a few sellers from China offering these drivers and emitters, but I also know that you never know what you will get when you order from China! :( It really is pathetic that the U.S.A manufactures Cree emitters, but yet most every sale on eBay for these emitters are offered from China  >:(

I will take some photos and post here as I progress. I just want to make sure that I get everything correct before proceeding!

Thanks again for your reply! I'm sure I will be posting again soon.lol

John G.
Thanks for sharing . that's what I need to find