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Old 11-06-2007, 12:08 PM   #1
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Flashlight

Am I losing it here?

I have a Maglite flashlight that will not work.

I have a bulb that works (can test it with another maglite), and I am getting 6.2 Volts when I measure between the center contact and the rim of the bulb holder of the non-working flashlight. But the bulb will not light when I put it in.

I've tried this with several bulbs. I have cleaned the contacts.

I know this is not rocket science! All I can figure is that the contacts are dirty enough that they work with the voltmeter, but the resistance is so high, that it can't power the bulb.

Anyway, before I pay postage to have it repaired for free (or have them tell me it's working fine), I thought I'd ask you dim bulbs luminaries if you could think of something simple I'm missing.
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Old 11-06-2007, 12:57 PM   #2
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A decade ago I had a similar experience with a knockoff Maglite. I couldn't figure it out either so I just gave up.
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Old 11-06-2007, 01:07 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by TromboneAl View Post
I have a bulb that works (can test it with another maglite), and I am getting 6.2 Volts when I measure between the center contact and the rim of the bulb holder of the non-working flashlight. But the bulb will not light when I put it in.

I've tried this with several bulbs. I have cleaned the contacts.
Can't speak to the maglite brand specifically, but I seem to recall a similar problem which required that I bend the contacts up a bit toward the contact point, basically making a firmer contact with the battery or bulb.

Don't know why, but I like flashlights. I've got them all over -- bedside, garage, RV, kitchen, backpack, hurricane panic box.
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As if you didn't know..If the above message contains medical content, it's NOT intended as advice, and may not be accurate, applicable or sufficient. Don't rely on it for any purpose. Consult your own doctor for all medical advice.
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Old 11-06-2007, 01:23 PM   #4
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I like the wind up ones. The only time I ever need a regular one is when the batteries no longer work. So the wind up ones are better for me.
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Old 11-06-2007, 01:26 PM   #5
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Since it's well past the time you should have tossed it and purchased a case of LED flashlights, try bending the center contact up towards where the bulb base will be and if that doesn't fix it, now is the time to go LED!
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Old 11-06-2007, 02:24 PM   #6
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Right, I might do that. This is the four D-Cell, "Did you hear a noise downstairs?" flashlight that I keep by the bed, and it's hard to beat burglars, bears and mountain lions into submission with a AAA cell LED light.

But I could duct tape an LED light to a baseball bat.
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Old 11-06-2007, 02:30 PM   #7
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Right, I might do that. This is the four D-Cell, "Did you hear a noise downstairs?" flashlight that I keep by the bed, and it's hard to beat burglars, bears and mountain lions into submission with a AAA cell LED light.

But I could duct tape an LED light to a baseball bat.
Or a shotgun...
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Old 11-06-2007, 02:37 PM   #8
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Mag lite now makes a replacement led bulb for my three cell so they probably do for yours as well. Really bright, much more so than the original bulb. A friend has a windmill three/four hundred yards away from my back step and I was lighting it up one night with the mag light.

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Old 11-06-2007, 04:10 PM   #9
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Mag lite now makes a replacement led bulb for my three cell so they probably do for yours as well. Really bright, much more so than the original bulb. A friend has a windmill three/four hundred yards away from my back step and I was lighting it up one night with the mag light.

Bruce
But the cost is HIGH... better to just buy a better LED flashlight for less...
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Old 11-07-2007, 12:02 AM   #10
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This is the four D-Cell, "Did you hear a noise downstairs?" flashlight that I keep by the bed.......
Yup, same here. It's good for close quarters 'flashlight to head' combat.
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Old 11-07-2007, 12:32 AM   #11
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Right, I might do that. This is the four D-Cell, "Did you hear a noise downstairs?" flashlight that I keep by the bed, and it's hard to beat burglars, bears and mountain lions into submission with a AAA cell LED light.

But I could duct tape an LED light to a baseball bat.
The LED flashlight would be perfect for DW to carry downstairs to deal with burglars, bears and mountain lions.
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Old 11-07-2007, 01:46 PM   #12
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I got what is called a tactical flashlight for a present. It is blindingly bright with lots of LED bulbs to shine in the bad guy's eyes, and is heavy. It has a rechargeable battery ni-cad battery.
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Old 11-07-2007, 02:22 PM   #13
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Is there some backstory to your new avatar?
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Old 11-07-2007, 02:46 PM   #14
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The LED replacements work pretty well - I converted one of mine that I keep in my ditty bag. If you have it working you can ignore the rest of the message...

As far as troubleshooting the light - I use the little colored clip leads that let you easily jumper between one connection to another for testing this type of problem if not obvious.

Since you indicated that you have a voltmeter. Test to see if you have a drop in voltage when the switch is turned on (with the bulb in place). if the voltage drops really low you may have a short in the bulb path. Usually in the case of a short circuit you should feel the batteries heating up if it's a dead short (with new batteries).

For a circuit open use the clip leads to bypass each part of the path.

Also you can (with the batteries out) check the resistance of the bulb as well as any resistance through the switch and voltage path.

Most would just buy a new flashlight but these are great flashlights (good weapons too) and worth some trouble.

Let me know if I can help -
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Old 11-07-2007, 02:49 PM   #15
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BTW, played around with it some more and now it's working, though I don't know what I did.
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Old 11-07-2007, 02:51 PM   #16
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From a die-hard doityourselfer...

I never argue with success!
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Old 11-07-2007, 03:06 PM   #17
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As I am a moderator again, I thought I should look the part. For a while anyway.

Not as good as a half a ton of angry pot roast.
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Old 11-07-2007, 03:21 PM   #18
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As I am a moderator again, I thought I should look the part. For a while anyway.
It's the bottom half of the Mrs. Putin portrait...
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Old 11-07-2007, 03:45 PM   #19
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Pardon me, but I think your fantasy is showing...
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Old 11-07-2007, 05:18 PM   #20
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As I am a moderator again, I thought I should look the part. For a while anyway.

Not as good as a half a ton of angry pot roast.
That's from Tom Lehrer, describing a bullfight.

In Old Mexico - Tom Lehrer (Lyrics and Chords)
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