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Old 29th May 2019, 7:16 pm   #181
emeritus
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

If you do find a clear replacement, it could be coloured using some transparent paint that is sold by model shops. Revell and Tamiya (but not Humbrol) do it in blue. It's what I use when replacing blown Christmas tree lights, now only having clear spares.
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Old 29th May 2019, 10:27 pm   #182
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

These flat topped bulbs do turn up occasionally on ebay.
Searching for them is exceedingly tedious however since I cant think of any specific search terms.
"vintage torch bulbs" should find them but will also include huge numbers of new and newish products and large numbers of other miniature lamps.
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Old 30th May 2019, 4:55 am   #183
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

A little more modern than the above torches, there was a vintage-ish torch in a charity shop in Orpington yesterday.

I would guess 1970's vintage, made in Hong Kong according to the (original) box. It runs off 4 C-size cells (or 'UM1' as they call them). It's approximately square in cross section, a little wider than 2 C cells side by side and a little longer than 2 C cells end to end if you see what I mean.

There is a translucent panel on the side of the body, illuminated by an internal bulb. And a reflector on the end with another bulb. A centre-off slide switch selects one or the other (but not both). Both bulbs are those 'pre-focus' flanged type.

There are 2 unusual features (at least to me), both relate to the reflector thing. The first is that in the middle of the 'lens' for that reflector there's a plastic knob. Turning it screws down a transparent red plastic sleeve around the bulb, thus turning that beam red. The second is that inside the torch behind the reflector there's a clip to store a spare bulb. That bulb is present and it's one of those flashing bulbs with an internal bimetallic strip. The instructions on the side of the box imply you can swap the bulbs over to get a flashing red light.

Note I said is 'was' in the charity shop. I don't normally collect torches but this looked unsual enough to add to my collection of odd electrical things.

I can't find any pictures of it on the web, I'll try to take some of mine sometime.
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Old 30th May 2019, 11:24 am   #184
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

Not really a collector, but they do seem to accumulate.

Here's some of the more unusual ones.....
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Old 30th May 2019, 1:08 pm   #185
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

Not much help, probably, but I actually bought a 'flattened' 2.5v torch bulb from a stall at the NVCF this year. The seller had a box of them. It's clear fronted with a white rear half to the glass. I got it to replace the fuse bulb in a current project, - a 1929 Osram Music Magnet.
I'm afraid I didn't note the name of the seller, but IIRC he was in the first row of the 'lower' part of the hall, towards the right hand when when looking from the main entrance.
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Old 30th May 2019, 3:52 pm   #186
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

Hi Terry, I also had a couple of bulbs off him. At a pound each I couldn't resist.. Sadly I didn't get his name either. Hopefully he'll be back next year.

John Joe.
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Old 30th May 2019, 7:37 pm   #187
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If Paul is really stuck for a flattened bulb, it's not essential that my Music Magnet has that particular shape so if he sends me a PM he can have mine. It only acts as a fuse in the HT - lead so it will (I hope) just sit invisibly doing nothing. In the event of a fault, it will enjoy a second of brightness then that will be the end of it. A much better use would be in an interesting looking torch. A normal torch bulb would be fine for my application.
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Old 30th May 2019, 9:46 pm   #188
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Thanks for the offer M0TGX Terry but I have tested them and both bulbs work. Neither torch looks like it has had much use so I am hopeful these bulbs will last. They will not be everyday torches.

I did not post a picture of the Goltone torch so that is rectified below. That is the main variant in the Ward and Goldstone patent. The Duchess type being an alternative to allow it to be powered from one battery.

Again a rather nice torch this time with the clear bulb but again the flat type.

I don't suppose anyone knows what batteries this would use? The compartment is 40mm high so the battery would be slightly smaller than that to allow for the top and bottom contacts. McMurdo posted an advert with some similar (though no doubt cheaper and Empire made) Pifco torches. I have seen a photo of the innards of one of these but it had batteries running lengthways (so a AAA fits) rather than top to bottom as the design calls for. I have also seen an American Boy Scout metal torch which had the same layout and the same reddish card inset with battery orientation indented in it. But sadly no batteries were shown.

For completeness I attach some photos of the Duchess now working. I took The Philpott's advice about depleted batteries and raided a part used 3LR12 for two of the cells cut the plastic container down to fit the two cells and created my own 2LR12. I could not find any photos of Ever Ready (or indeed Volex) batteries but did find some good ones of Pile Wonder so my Panasonic cells are masquerading as French.
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Old 24th Aug 2019, 8:26 pm   #189
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With autumn on it's way it's time to get our torches ready for the many dark nights ahead of us. I have enjoyed reading this thread so I thought that I should contribute with my old lights.

1. This type was very common when I was a child. It is powered by a 3R12 (1289) battery and has a red lens on the back. I believe they were made by several manufacturers with only minor differences. Later models were made of plastic. Regardless of manufacturer they are almost always orange.

2. A 'JEAB', made in Sweden. Uses a 3R12 battery. These were made in many different colours and patterns.

3. 'BEREC', red plastic, made in Hong Kong. Uses four R20(D)cells, I have fitted a LED lamp in this one, it is used regularly. It is of course heavy and bulky compared to a modern light, but I like it. Feels sturdy.

4. Unknown manufacturer, a quite big lamp. Powered by a obsolete 4.5 volt battery that is no longer sold. I have made an adapter out of a dual D-cell holder, a ice scraper and a broken clock spring I changed the bulb to a lower voltage one to compensate for the missing 1.5 volts.

I don't know about British ice scrapes but in Sweden the simplest model is simply a square plastic sheet, they are often printed with advertising and given out free in various places. This one is from a Swedish bank.
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Old 25th Aug 2019, 2:48 pm   #190
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Default Re: Old torches - anyone here collect them?

The second picture above is very like an Ever Ready I’ve got. This has a 1289 battery that I’ve re-stuffed with U12s.

It is also fitted with a 1W LED. Before anybody asks there is no current limiting resistor. I decided to see what would happen without — they are so cheap that blowing one up in the name or Research and Development isn’t worth thinking about. I must have done it five years ago and it’s still working.

My thinking was that the battery voltage won’t stay at 4.5V for long and it’s only lit for short periods. While I had it to bits to photograph I measured the current and it was 180mA, against the rated 300mA, and dropping as I looked. Even at that I wouldn’t want to look directly at it. It could even be argued that it’s “authentic” as incandescent torch bulbs were made to be bright at the cost of a shorter life.
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Old 25th Aug 2019, 10:41 pm   #191
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hampus View Post
With autumn on it's way it's time to get our torches ready for the many dark nights ahead of us...
This thought has prompted me to dust off a few more of mine. Left to right:

1. Running off three U2-size cells and thought to be from the 1980s, this motorist’s lamp has a conventional spotlight with a detachable translucent amber cover which converts it into a warning beacon, a flashing amber warning light, and a white floodlight that looks like it contains a fluorescent tube but has just an ordinary torch bulb inside.

2. Pifco 3-cell rubber torch from the 1970s or later.

3. Odd Chinese-made chrome plated 2-cell torch, branded “White Elephant” which is ironic. It has a blue plastic ring around the lens, reminiscent of torches used by cinema usherettes in the 1950s, but it’s much newer than that.

4. Odd little 2-cell (U11) torch inherited from my late father.

5. Ever Ready square-fronted torch running off two U2s.

Phil
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Old 25th Aug 2019, 10:42 pm   #192
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Re the first picture in post #191, I have several NOS torches that are very similar in size and shape but that are equipped with red and green filters that may be slid upwards in front of the reflector.
The packaging suggests that cyclists could carry one as a spare since the red filter would allow it to replace a failed front or rear light, rather than carrying two spares.

The red lens at the back emits only a very feeble light, I suspect that it was simply to confirm that the light was lit if used as a cycle headlight.

I have seen these with an orange case as shown or in blue.
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Old 25th Aug 2019, 10:49 pm   #193
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I have others which I can’t find just at the moment, but here’s an odd one that dates from the late 1970s. It’s an ‘emergency torch’ which sits in its holder, fixed to the wall. In said emergency, you grab the torch and pull it from the holder, whereupon it lights up immediately. This trick is performed by a plastic tongue, an integral part of the holder but difficult to see in the photo, which fits through a slot in the back of the torch and holds the two U2 batteries apart, the pressure from the negative contact spring being sufficient to retain the torch in its holder until needed.

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Old 25th Aug 2019, 11:19 pm   #194
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Quote:
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The Ever Ready Trimlite. (Or was it Trimlight?)
Yes Dave, it was ‘Trimlight’. There’s one for sale on you-know-where at the moment!
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Old 26th Aug 2019, 12:21 am   #195
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Here’s one of the torches I was looking for earlier. The supplier was Internatiinal Sourcing Solutions of Peterborough, a company now dissolved. It’s a scam. Despite the blurb on the box, “Everlasting torch - no batteries needed”, it actually contains a pair of CR2032 coin cells in series, which are essential to its operation.

When I acquired the torch, it didn’t work at all. The magnet can be shaken between two rubber end-stops and passes through the centre of the solenoid in the handle. The solenoid feeds what looks like a bridge rectifier comprising four diodes. However, no amount of shaking would produce even a glimmer of light. When I took it apart I found the duff batteries, and once replacements were fitted it worked perfectly, albeit with a fairly pathetic beam of light from the single cold white LED, flat reflector and bullseye lens.

I could understand it if the batteries were disc-type DEACs or similar rechargeable cells, but they weren’t!

Phil
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Old 26th Aug 2019, 8:06 pm   #196
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Phil,

What purpose does the coin cells have? Do the maybe bias the LED as the power from the generator is not enough on it's own?
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Old 2nd Sep 2019, 8:38 am   #197
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Hi Hampus. As far as I can tell, the cells drive the LED because if the cells are discharged, as they were when I inherited the torch, it simply doesn’t work no matter how much you shake the generator. It looks like it was made like that. I could understand it if the cells were rechargeable, but they’re standard coin cells.

Here’s another old-ish torch that I bought my wife in around 1980. It’s a Duracell ‘Durabeam’ which works pretty well, once I cleared away the corrosion left by the original Duracell batteries...

Phil
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Old 2nd Sep 2019, 10:57 am   #198
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I have a similar dynamo torch which I bought in a broken state just to play with. Mine didn't have any button cells inside but did have a super capacitor, 1 Farad I think. The capacitor had a crack in it and was useless. However, I still have the coil and the cylindrical neodymium magnet from it.
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Old 2nd Sep 2019, 12:51 pm   #199
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I used to have one of those Duracell torches many years ago, back when my age was still a single figure!!! I think it broke somehow and got chucked

I’ll have to get some photos of some new acquisitions...

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Old 2nd Sep 2019, 4:21 pm   #200
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Quote:
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If the cells are discharged . . . it simply doesn’t work no matter how much you shake the generator.
Odd thing, you get the worst of two worlds, you need both batteries and manual labour

Quote:
Here’s another old-ish torch that I bought my wife in around 1980. It’s a Duracell ‘Durabeam’ which works pretty well, once I cleared away the corrosion left by the original Duracell batteries...

Phil
Even Duracells own torches can't stand Duracells
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