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Other Vintage Household Electrical or Electromechanical Items For discussions about other vintage (over 25 years old) electrical and electromechanical household items. See the sticky thread for details.

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Old 31st Jan 2017, 10:12 pm   #141
broadgage
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

I have just purchased on line a couple of NOS vintage torches.

The type that attach to the top of a 6 volt screw terminal lantern battery, usually a zinc carbon type.
These do not have a normal torch bulb in a reflector but instead use a PAR 30 sealed beam reflector lamp, 4.75 volt 0.5 amp. This makes replacement lamps rather expensive but does have the merit that a new, perfectly aligned and un tarnished reflector is always fitted.
These sealed beam lamps are still made.

The light output is not that impressive by modern standards, but the perfectly aligned sealed beam lamp gives a range of over a mile.
Battery life is dozens of hours, lamp life is said to be 100 hours.
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Old 31st Jan 2017, 10:19 pm   #142
Phil G4SPZ
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

Interesting. Can we see a pic, please?
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Old 1st Feb 2017, 12:06 am   #143
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

Do not have means to take pictures of my own, but here is a library picture of a very similar product.

http://www.flashlightmuseum.com/Ever...n-6V-1231-1988

Mine has a black rubber covered switch rather than the red push button illustrated, but is otherwise virtually identical.
The picture shows the body of the light only, it is much larger when attached to the top of the battery.
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Old 1st Feb 2017, 6:32 pm   #144
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

I have this one that I've made a D cell adaptor for.
Have a few others interesting too.
Any idea of age??
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Old 10th Mar 2017, 12:01 am   #145
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Techman View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Refugee View Post
In a box of components I have one of those 1960s torches that has a socket in the middle of the lens where you fit a screwdriver shaft.
Here's mine that I seem to remember was bought for me when I was a kid. Somewhere I've got the other three screwdriver bits for it - now to go and find some batteries (cells) to fit it
I found a posh one at the flea market and the trader only wanted £2 for it.
It looks like it has never even had any batteries in it from new.
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Old 10th Mar 2017, 2:23 am   #146
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

That looks exactly like the set I was referring to in #32: I remember that picture of a vintage car and that the case was made in England (unlike its contents). Unfortunately the screwdriver bits that came with mine were rubbish, and the crosshead blade converted itself to a spike when I tried using it to remove one of the rear brake light lenses of my car.
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Old 10th Mar 2017, 12:22 pm   #147
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

The interesting bit is the red trim. All the others I have seen had just plane chrome and that was it.
The thing you need to do is to keep an eye out for a screwdriver with a grotty handle because the fitting is designed to work with a bare shaft from any screwdriver from the period. Yes the shafts are not special but you do need to find a good one or two to get a good functional tool.

Last edited by AC/HL; 10th Mar 2017 at 8:19 pm. Reason: OT aside edited
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Old 10th Mar 2017, 12:41 pm   #148
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

I did find the torch handle useful, and did use it with some decent quality bits from another set. The fitting did seem to be fairly standard before the advent of the 1/4" hex drive.
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Old 10th Mar 2017, 1:54 pm   #149
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

Bits that did not fit were pretty rare. The trick was to find a driver with a damaged handle because if you did you were on a winner for a good bit for it.
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Old 28th Mar 2017, 12:32 pm   #150
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Osiris69 View Post
I have this one that I've made a D cell adaptor for.
Have a few others interesting too.
Any idea of age??
Sorry for the slow reply. Well I don't have any firm dates but that style of lantern made it into the 1920's, by which time it had the metal logo on the front that read just 'Ever Ready' and the 'Specialties' was the earlier name, so I would say around 1911-1915 (only a guess). The older lights were usually made from Mahogany and yours is made from Oak - slightly cheaper. I do find these older torches work best with either the original style peanut bulb or a bi-pin Maglite bulb fitted into a screw cap base. The reason being is that with modern bulbs (those over 1925) you have two support wires which cast shadows in the old lights due to the parabolic reflector. With the original bulbs you get less of a beam but a nicer light overall - and without shadows and shapes, apart from a cute 'S' in the middle from the straight filament.
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Old 28th Mar 2017, 3:50 pm   #151
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

I will have to make that bulb-modification to my box lantern, the bulb I fitted a while back has finally given up! You have to take the whole front of the torch apart to get to the bulb, I'd like to fit something with a long life, so I don't have to open it up too often, as it'll wear the screw threads taking it to bits too often.

I have another torch to add to this thread now too! I should have done so sooner, I got it for Christmas. It's made by Pifco, runs off 2 C cells, and has a flashing bulb in the red bit on top (and it works too!!) and a plain torch bulb up front. The switch on the back needs some attention, as it doesn't work as expected, the front light comes on in the 'off' position!

Regards,
Lloyd.
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Old 28th Mar 2017, 3:51 pm   #152
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

and a couple of shots of the flasher bulb...
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Old 3rd Dec 2018, 1:56 pm   #153
Phil G4SPZ
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Default My old Black & Decker 'Super Spotliter' F950

About this old (1980s vintage) 'torch-with-fluorescent-tube' that I've owned since new.

A while back, the fluorescent lamp failed, and I got it working again by re-soldering a broken connection on the HT inverter transformer, but over time the original 3.6 volt NiCad battery went the way of most things, so the torch sat unused until recently when I salvaged some Lithium rechargeable batteries from a broken vacuum cleaner. A single Lithium cell (about 3.7 volts nominal) was a good match and I now have a working torch again. It's one of the brightest and best-focused torches I have.

Now, the query. I can find absolutely no reference to this model anywhere on the internet, despite extensive searching. It's as if it never existed, yet it clearly does, as the photo proves. Perhaps it had a short-lived production run? Certainly the term 'Spotliter' brings up other B&D torches, but of completely different types. I also know for certain that another similar model was once available which had no fluorescent tube, just a plain handle, as I once met someone using one on a night hike in about 1990.

Does anyone on this Forum recognise it, or have one of their own?

The other oddity is the mini fluorescent tube itself. It's only about 5" long, has no markings, and the user instructions describe it as Black & Decker part number HA5821. I bought and fitted a replacement many years ago, but can't recall where I found it.

All suggestions welcome!

Phil
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Last edited by Station X; 4th Dec 2018 at 4:42 pm. Reason: Threads merged.
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Old 3rd Dec 2018, 3:23 pm   #154
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Default Re: My old Black & Decker 'Super Spotliter' F950

I would be very worried about trying to charge a lithium cell from a NiCd charger. From what I have read the results can be spectacular!
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Old 3rd Dec 2018, 3:55 pm   #155
Phil G4SPZ
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Default Re: My old Black & Decker 'Super Spotliter' F950

I wouldn’t dream of doing that, Tony! I use my Farnell laboratory power supply to charge the cell at 200mA constant current to a monitored final end-point of 4.1 volts.
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Last edited by Phil G4SPZ; 3rd Dec 2018 at 3:58 pm. Reason: Clarification
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Old 3rd Dec 2018, 4:36 pm   #156
broadgage
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Default Re: My old Black & Decker 'Super Spotliter' F950

I suspect that the fluorescent lamp is probably a standard type, 6 inches nominal length and 4 watts nominal wattage.
Now less used than in the past but still fairly readily available. It might be worth buying a spare for stock since these were never very popular and production may cease.
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Old 3rd Dec 2018, 4:41 pm   #157
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Default Re: My old Black & Decker 'Super Spotliter' F950

Sadly, it’s nowhere near 6” long. I’ll try looking at specialist lamp suppliers though.
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Old 3rd Dec 2018, 5:47 pm   #158
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Default Re: My old Black & Decker 'Super Spotliter' F950

I think the fluorescent tube is known as F4T5/D series - available from Farnell.

Similar tubes - emitting UV light - are used in the "fake money detector" lights that were popular a few years back, and also in the fly-electrocutors found in food shops.
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Old 3rd Dec 2018, 6:30 pm   #159
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Default Re: My old Black & Decker 'Super Spotliter' F950

Thanks for that, very helpful! The shortest tube Farnell or anyone else offers is 6”, so I guess the 5” version is going to prove hard to find.

Phil
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Old 3rd Dec 2018, 6:31 pm   #160
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Default Re: My old Black & Decker 'Super Spotliter' F950

There are some truly odd sizes at the lower end of the scale, and i fully expect them to disappear....having said that the amount of that 6" tube that Farnell has in stock suggests that there is a significant market for THOSE replacements- perhaps it is a standard for UPS emergency lighting modules and/or military spec.

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