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Mine Exploration Forum

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Author Fellows lamps forum.
Vanoord

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Joined: 28/11/2005
Location: North Wales

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Posted: 01/08/2014 17:59:17
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royfellows wrote:

I dont think that this would happen on Sten and possibly a few others though.


Yes, the StenLight switches on at the power level that the switch is set to when the battery is connected.

I presume this is because the switch is (effectively) mechanical - whereas in (some) other lamps the single clicky switch gives the same input each time it is pressed, which is then converted electronically to switch the lamp on and off or change the mode.

There are other lamps where the switch is an on/off clicky so that if the battery is disconnected and reconnected, it will come back on - tends to be the sort with a separate mode button though.

Basically, it depends on the switch used and the set-up of the electronics.

Is this ringing a bells on whats been heard about Chinese bike light/head torches?

Is which bit ringing bells?!

A decently-designed battery pack shouldn't have enough room for the battery to compress the springs even under shock-loading.

It should be possible to design a pack which has a mechanically-fixed cover which ensures that the battery can not bounce so much that it loses contact.

Anyway, that would require either the battery to move beyond the range of the spring (in which case something is badly wrong with the design) or for the battery to move faster than the spring can extend, in which case the impact will be so severe that the light going out would be the least of your problems!

You can replicate this sort of thing with a torch if you don't screw the battery case up enough - i.e. don't compress the spring enough but if the case is designed properly, the battery shouldn't ever be able to bounce far enough to lose contact.

--

Filling space until a new signature comes along...
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lozz

Joined: 03/08/2012
Location: Cornwall

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Posted: 01/08/2014 18:00:23
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"And this a quality component from Farnell, not anything Chinese. I was pondering on this, never seen it happen before on lamp, car, TV, Radio, lawnmower, or anything that comes to mind."

Yep, had that, I spent several years as a radio and tv engineer, double pole on/off switch...live contacts welds together or otherwise sticks, neutral contact works as normal at switch off so set appears to be switched off, if it was an AC/DC set the chassis becomes live...230 V with respect to earth, nasty if yer get caught.

Lozz.
IP: 86.174.134.112
lozz

Joined: 03/08/2012
Location: Cornwall

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Posted: 01/08/2014 18:07:03
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Drillbilly. wrote:

christwigg wrote:

Drillbilly. wrote:

Caving has gucci fashion elements and some of this has seeped into mine exploring in the form of "jewellery".


One could make similar sweeping generalisations about mine explorers in Landrovers, wearing camo, wanting to look 'proper' with their belt-mounted Oldhams.

Drillbilly. wrote:

I don't like the RudeNora and the Scurion, not because they are crap, just because they have not been designed to withstand the rigours of caving


Seriously ?
I somehow don't think they would have gained widespread usage if they were failing on every trip (but it didn't matter because at least you still looked cool)

Simple fact is that no light is immune to problems.

I've been out at least once a week for the last six year and i've seen a Sten fail, a Nora fail and (gulp) one of Roys fail.




My offroader of choice is Suzuki SJ. Arguably a better offroader as well :D


They are quite capable off road, I knew a forestry contractor that used one of them in the woods, I was impressed.

The old 2CV was good off road as well.

Lozz.
IP: 86.174.134.112
royfellows

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Joined: 13/06/2007
Location: Great Wyrley near Walsall

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Posted: 01/08/2014 18:24:56
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lozz wrote:

"And this a quality component from Farnell, not anything Chinese. I was pondering on this, never seen it happen before on lamp, car, TV, Radio, lawnmower, or anything that comes to mind."

Yep, had that, I spent several years as a radio and tv engineer, double pole on/off switch...live contacts welds together or otherwise sticks, neutral contact works as normal at switch off so set appears to be switched off, if it was an AC/DC set the chassis becomes live...230 V with respect to earth, nasty if yer get caught.

Lozz.


I can see this at mains voltage but struggle badly with a 3 amp rated switch carrying 900mA at 12V DC.

Me still ponders,........and ponders

--

Qualifications? Well, being doing it for 30 years and I'm still here.
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Tamarmole

Joined: 20/05/2009
Location: Tamar Valley

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Posted: 01/08/2014 18:38:49
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Drillbilly. wrote:

christwigg wrote:

Drillbilly. wrote:

Caving has gucci fashion elements and some of this has seeped into mine exploring in the form of "jewellery".


One could make similar sweeping generalisations about mine explorers in Landrovers, wearing camo, wanting to look 'proper' with their belt-mounted Oldhams.

Drillbilly. wrote:

I don't like the RudeNora and the Scurion, not because they are crap, just because they have not been designed to withstand the rigours of caving


Seriously ?
I somehow don't think they would have gained widespread usage if they were failing on every trip (but it didn't matter because at least you still looked cool)

Simple fact is that no light is immune to problems.

I've been out at least once a week for the last six year and i've seen a Sten fail, a Nora fail and (gulp) one of Roys fail.




My offroader of choice is Suzuki SJ. Arguably a better offroader as well :D


Suzuki = Hair dressers car.
IP: 81.157.206.30 Edited: 01/08/2014 18:39:39 by Tamarmole
lozz

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Location: Cornwall

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Posted: 01/08/2014 19:30:53
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royfellows wrote:

lozz wrote:

"And this a quality component from Farnell, not anything Chinese. I was pondering on this, never seen it happen before on lamp, car, TV, Radio, lawnmower, or anything that comes to mind."

Yep, had that, I spent several years as a radio and tv engineer, double pole on/off switch...live contacts welds together or otherwise sticks, neutral contact works as normal at switch off so set appears to be switched off, if it was an AC/DC set the chassis becomes live...230 V with respect to earth, nasty if yer get caught.

Lozz.


I can see this at mains voltage but struggle badly with a 3 amp rated switch carrying 900mA at 12V DC.

Me still ponders,........and ponders


Typically the old AC/DC "live chassis" radios would have a current flow of around 130 to 150 ma, bear in mind the mains on/off switches in those were mainly of the rotary type ganged on the back of the volume or tone controls, they failed in all sorts of ways.

I know this is not generally mining related but if anyone decides to work on or otherwise expose the chassis of such sets then please use an isolating transformer for your own safety, the isolated output is floating ie: no live or neutral as it's not referenced to earth like wot the mains supply is, failing that use an RCD at the very least.

Lozz.
IP: 86.174.134.112 Edited: 01/08/2014 19:32:17 by lozz
ttxela

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Joined: 04/09/2007
Location: Cambs

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Posted: 01/08/2014 20:14:23
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A lamp not mentioned yet is Miles's Raptor Pro. I love my Magnumstar for photography but use the Raptor Pro if I just want a lamp to navigate by. It's proper scuffed up now and the only maintenance it gets is an occasional chuck into a bucket of water to wash off the mud Smile

IP: 86.151.215.100
benf

Joined: 29/10/2013

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Posted: 01/08/2014 20:29:05
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It's me with the magnumstar that keeps failing Smile

I think the switch breaking is purely something mechanical; it feels like it has popped out of it's contact, meaning it was stuck in the 'high' position.

I spent an entire trip with about 1600 lumens coming of my helmet! Shocked

Tbh, I think the magnumstar is a brilliant lamp (if a bit over the top!), mine just seems to have had some reliability issues.


Ben
IP: 86.158.188.4
Willy Eckerslyke

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Joined: 03/11/2011
Location: Anglesey

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Posted: 01/08/2014 20:55:13
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benf wrote:

I spent an entire trip with about 1600 lumens coming of my helmet!

The battery held out though, didn't it! For around seven hours. Thumbs Up
IP: 87.114.134.96
droid

Joined: 31/10/2010
Location: Tamworth

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Posted: 01/08/2014 21:44:29
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Main problem I've had with my MagnumStar has to do with Chinese quality control: 2 dead leds and a dead cell.

All sorted perfectly amicably by Roy.
IP: 86.20.218.42 Edited: 01/08/2014 21:45:59 by droid
royfellows

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Joined: 13/06/2007
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Posted: 01/08/2014 22:05:32
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Ben, I think it bad luck, people who say no such thing dont have it. It comes in runs, serious.

If memory serves correct there is only you and a chap from Newtown who has had any trouble I would say for 12 months, and he had two or three different issues with a Trigon in March, but all sorted now.

Your charging issues was due to a bad batch of PCBs, Im getting it sorted. The switch, well.
Ive forgot the other things, Oh hell. Roy made a bad solder to an LED.

Ill have to live with it, my Tanto will stay in its Saya, I dont take Bushido that seriously. (I take the honesty bit as all can see)
Laugh

Droids LED issues where a run accross the board, Trigons as well. A manufacturers issue with insufficient soldering to the heat sink bases, later ones where beefed up a lot, I posted some photographs at the time. Some may remember them.

As a final comment, yes those 12V 12 cell blue belt mount batteries are quite a thing. To put it in perspective they are 12V 10 AH, an average car battery is 12V 16AH. Trouble is that they would not stand a starter motor hit discharge rate, no way. They are probably similar to used on race cars which are started from external power source.
More perspective is that they about half size of the Oldham lead acid battery and about a third the weight, something to ponder on.



--

Qualifications? Well, being doing it for 30 years and I'm still here.
IP: 92.19.50.238 Edited: 01/08/2014 22:07:14 by royfellows
Drillbilly.

Joined: 09/12/2013
Location: adios

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Posted: 01/08/2014 22:35:44
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Tamarmole wrote:

Drillbilly. wrote:

christwigg wrote:

Drillbilly. wrote:

Caving has gucci fashion elements and some of this has seeped into mine exploring in the form of "jewellery".


One could make similar sweeping generalisations about mine explorers in Landrovers, wearing camo, wanting to look 'proper' with their belt-mounted Oldhams.

Drillbilly. wrote:

I don't like the RudeNora and the Scurion, not because they are crap, just because they have not been designed to withstand the rigours of caving


Seriously ?
I somehow don't think they would have gained widespread usage if they were failing on every trip (but it didn't matter because at least you still looked cool)

Simple fact is that no light is immune to problems.

I've been out at least once a week for the last six year and i've seen a Sten fail, a Nora fail and (gulp) one of Roys fail.




My offroader of choice is Suzuki SJ. Arguably a better offroader as well :D


Suzuki = Hair dressers car.


Rick, I am as much of a hairdresser as you are.

Plus, it's pink.
IP: 37.152.203.150
J25GTi

Joined: 09/06/2012

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Posted: 02/08/2014 07:37:43
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Drillbilly. wrote:

Tamarmole wrote:

Drillbilly. wrote:

christwigg wrote:

Drillbilly. wrote:

Caving has gucci fashion elements and some of this has seeped into mine exploring in the form of "jewellery".


One could make similar sweeping generalisations about mine explorers in Landrovers, wearing camo, wanting to look 'proper' with their belt-mounted Oldhams.

Drillbilly. wrote:

I don't like the RudeNora and the Scurion, not because they are crap, just because they have not been designed to withstand the rigours of caving


Seriously ?
I somehow don't think they would have gained widespread usage if they were failing on every trip (but it didn't matter because at least you still looked cool)

Simple fact is that no light is immune to problems.

I've been out at least once a week for the last six year and i've seen a Sten fail, a Nora fail and (gulp) one of Roys fail.




My offroader of choice is Suzuki SJ. Arguably a better offroader as well :D


Suzuki = Hair dressers car.


Rick, I am as much of a hairdresser as you are.

Plus, it's pink.


As long as it has a full sett of opening doors its still better than Rick's land rover Wink

Also Rick, did you not get stuck on a muddy hill that beetles and cortinas can get up in your landy? Innocent
IP: 81.157.27.120
royfellows

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Joined: 13/06/2007
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Posted: 04/08/2014 16:07:42
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Vanoord wrote:

3-ish

The ideal battery pack (wishing for the moon on the stick) would effectively be something the size of the new Sten battery but with the ability to replace the cells inside it if you wished to.

Not so you could replace the cells underground, but so that you could re-invigorate the pack after a couple of years; or to upgrade it to a higher capacity.

The issue - I think - is in making a case with sufficient circuitry and wiring built-in that you don't have to reach for the soldering iron to change the batteries.

I suppose it *might* be possible to make a case that you could open and swap batteries whilst underground but it would probably be difficult to maintain water-tight integrity.


I am still digesting feedback, but have queries on these points. Its not moon on a stick as well.

I am developing a new compact power pack to hold 4 cells, either 4 parallel as a heavy duty 4V, or 2S2P as an 8V for Trigons and X3000s.

I have been testing items that can be suitably modified for underground use (brick you-know-what) including a 4 cell holder which is IP67 waterproof, user can change cells and charge individually, and can be opened underground and resealed. The only issue was bang and lamp changes modes issue, which may relate to me using unprotected cells which are a tad shorter than the protected ones with a PCB in the base.

Apart from this the item was well constructed, and certainly not junk.
How much interest would there be in this?

To recharge all the cells at same time you would need a 4 bay dedicated LiIon charger for a start.

Also, a point to make is that I cannot speak for other lamp sellers products but the main cost of mine is in the cells anyway, and now I am using Sanyo cells lifespan could be years anyway. Is it worth it?

Any comments?

--

Qualifications? Well, being doing it for 30 years and I'm still here.
IP: 92.19.53.247
ChrisJC

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Posted: 04/08/2014 20:44:48
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I would be wary of a pack of LiPo or LiIon where you can individually change / charge cells. The possible excitement caused by a mismatch would make for entertaining viewing.

Chris.
IP: 86.146.166.173
NewStuff

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Posted: 04/08/2014 20:56:00
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Indeed. I would be putting brightly coloured "battery advice" sheets in there, if only to CYA. Otherwise though, I like the idea for people with a bit of experience to change cells, or for those willing to put a little effort into learning.

--

Searching for the ever elusive Underground Titty Bar.
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rikj

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Posted: 04/08/2014 22:23:42
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Just general feedback for Roy:

I’d like to see a 1 lumen moonlight mode (or we could be honest and call it a rescue mode) on any underground light.

I’m with Vanoord on being able to open things up to check and test them. The best analogy I can think of is servicing your own car. If you do that, then you’re more likely to spot other unrelated things that are starting to go wrong, before they become a problem.

Finally, battery heresy. Looking at hand torches recently it became obvious that as LED efficiency increases, it’s increasingly possible to look at returning to Ni-mh AA batteries. Several benefits, but mainly the idea of having one platform of batteries across a range of devices. I am starting to imagine the joy of having only ONE battery charger instead of a large box full of them.

AA batteries have a much better range of IP67+ cases available. Old Petzl Zooms have nice helmet mounted cases and are cheap as chips on ebay; AA carrier adapter a few quid. For another one I spent £13 on a superbly engineered AA case, designed for continuous use under 10G, will survive 50G peak, IP67.

I can’t deny that 18650s are by far the best bang for bucks, but as LEDs continue to draw less power for the same output, I’m less inclined to shell out for yet another proprietary battery, with yet another proprietary charger.





--

'If the rule you followed brought you to this, of what use was the rule?'
IP: 86.129.54.23
royfellows

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Posted: 05/08/2014 08:50:07
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Yes and you get someone stuffing the box with 1200 mAh cells and then complaining that you dont get the burn times quoted.
Its happened and nearly went as far as returns. I can really do without this.

I have just pulled my AA holder option from the EcoStar, it was a rather untidy looking thing as well and I felt it let the side down, but it did work and worked well.

Maybe I look for other AA options, but they right out of the frame for the bat cookers which seems to be my nich market.


One useful bit of feedback so far, and thanks to those who took the trouble to post, is that a lot of people dont like flicking between power options. I have thought this out and here are my conclusions:

All the lamps have a last setting memory, with the bat cookers you turn on the lamp and there is no doubt about what mode you are on, but not so the EcoStar where a user will have to flick through the 3 different modes to ensure that they are on the standard mode.

My solution here is is change the electronics so that it always comes on first time on the standard mode, so no need to check this, and anyone who never uses anything else has no need to do anything.
Simples.

I am still considering other points, thanks again, especially to Dave L and Rick who took a lot of trouble to post.

--

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IP: 92.24.119.163
Tamarmole

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Posted: 05/08/2014 09:38:31
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royfellows wrote:

I was going to stay out and let people have their say but had to reply to this. Sorry Stu, but your comment about the Nora and Scurrion was not very nice. Mr Bif has put a hell of a lot of work into designing the Rude Nora where quality comes before all else. Some of the fanciful bits indeed are purely decorative and serve no useful purpose, but does not make the lamp crap.

He may well think my lamps are crap but is too polite to say so!
Laugh

Anyway, thank you for your kind remarks about mine.

On another matter, what do people think about battery packs?

Look
1/ Complete sealed unit, chargeable from supplied dedicated charger.

2/ Openable, if thats a proper word, waterproof case. Designed to take a seperate pack, and charged from seperate dedicated charger. (Most high end lamps like Monkey etc)

3/ As above, but designed to take individual cells. AAs, 18650s etc.


Sealed unit gets my vote - no problems with water and ochre ingress.
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royfellows

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Posted: 05/08/2014 15:35:41
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On another matter, I have revised the spec on the X3000 by moving the battery meter to the top under the floods, this has enabled more foot level peripheral light and liberated room for a better positioning of the pilot light, now increased to 150mA. Still run for days.



(click image to open full size image in new window)

--

Qualifications? Well, being doing it for 30 years and I'm still here.
IP: 92.24.119.163
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