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Author Topic: CF8 Single Cell FoC Tri Cree Graflex Wiring Help MB Chassis Solo's Hold  (Read 412 times)

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Offline Dann

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Howdy folks, I'm having some trouble getting my Graflex wired up and I'm hoping someone has some advice.

I'm using a 3D printed chassis from Martin Beyer 3D-chassis and a Solo's Hold blade holder.

I'm using a CF v8, but I've hacked it for use with a single 18650. Although now I'm kinda wishing I just went the 2 cell route.

Anyhow, I've got three 3mm Blue accent LEDs, and I believe I don't need resistors for them, and just bridge the resistor pads in the accent LED section, but correct me please if I'm wrong.

The other thing I'm trying to figure out is the FoC. The Tri Cree I'm using is a B/G/W (I'm going for an old school ANH Cyan sort of color for the main blade), and I'll be using the White for the FoC. Now, since I'm using the single 18650, does the White FoC LED need a resistor?

Also, I'm using 31 gauge enameled copper magnet wire for the 2W bass speaker. I'm using the thin magnet wire for the accent LEDs as well, which I'm told is just fine. But for the speaker I'm thinking that may not be enough and that I should switch to something bigger like the 28 gauge I've used everywhere else.

Has anyone built their Graflex using one of these kits? Any help is appreciated!!

Here's a link to the same thread in the TCSS forums, with a few photos included. CF8 Single Cell FoC Tri Cree Graflex Wiring Help MB Chassis Solo's Hold Blade

« Last Edit: January 02, 2018, 03:16:31 PM by Dann »

Offline Ashla

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You need resistors if you want your LEDs to live. And chances are you will end up mixing in some white in the normal on color of the blade.
When I built my saber, which is a Graflex style, I thought about forgoing resistors because of how much brighter the LEDs were without them. Ultimately the idea of having to take everything apart to replace the LEDs out weighed the small gains from leaving resistors out of the equation. Plus having the option to run all three LEDs at their max value added more in the way of color options!

If you know the forward voltage of your LEDs you can use the calculator on this website, http://led.linear1.org/1led.wiz ,
to figure out what resistors you need. The place that you bought your LEDs from should provide the values you need to plug in the needed information. Also, be sure to use the fully charged voltage as the source voltage, which for a single 18650 is around 4.1ish volts.

For the 3mm LEDs you want to use one of these for each LED
http://www.thecustomsabershop.com/20mA-DynaOhm-Variable-Resistor-P847.aspx
The 3mm guys are small and running them without a resistor is sure to fry them in no time.

As far as the speaker goes there is no good way to figure out the needed wire size for something that small. The big thing is to make sure that your wire runs are as short as possible because length is a huge factor in the ability of wire to be able to handle load.
If it's possible, wire up the board while its sitting on the bench, that way you can easily make changes to wire sizes and figure out if there is a difference in sound. The other thing to take note of when testing on the bench is if the wire becomes warm, if it does then it's probably too small.

I hope this helps!

Online K-2SO

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Yes, you would need a resistor for the White FoC. When you do the calculations for the resistor, use the 3.7V volts for the source. The results are small enough so that you can successfully use a SMD resistor for the White, and the Blue.

As for the accent LEDs, if they are blue, their Voltage should be around 3.2, and those accent pads only give out 3.3V and 18 mA of power. You need to know the specs of the accent LEDs for sure to know whether you need the resistors or not.

I find your arguments vague and unconvincing.

Quiet! *Slap* And there’s a fresh one if you mouth off again.

Offline Yoda

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Correct on both accounts and to add to that...

1. be sure you read through both the MB manual for assembly as I believe there are wire size recommendations there
for fitting in that particular chassis for the speaker etc...

2. be sure to read through the plecterlabs manual about the LED requirements and supplied power from the baord
for both the accent and main LEDs.

Depending on the amount of room you have will determine if you can run the variable resistors as previously
mentioned by Ashla.

If your specific LEDs do needed any resistance there are small resistors that go in the foot print you would
typically bridge if needed.

Though some White and Blue SMD or 3mm LEDs for accents are able to run direct as the plecter board is already
providing the proper power through those pads as K-2SO mentioned.

Take your time and always experiment a bit before final assembly and you'll be familiar with things enough
that in the end you'll make something you can be proud of and enjoy :cool:


Offline Dann

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Thank you folks for your help!


But I'm already only using a single 18650 to power the Crystal Focus, which is 3.7v, so you're saying I'd still need a resistor for the white die?

And why would I need resistors for the other LEDs on the Tri Cree? I thought the CF board took care of voltage regulation for the main LED.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2018, 07:34:13 PM by Dann »

Online K-2SO

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It only takes care of the voltage regulation for whatever is connected to channel one (I would hope in your case, you would attach the Blue to it). If you have a 3.7 V solution, the Green would only need a very nominal resistor, the White die would need a bit more of a resistor, since it’s only takes about 3.1V. You may want to re read the CF manual a couple of  more times.

I find your arguments vague and unconvincing.

Quiet! *Slap* And there’s a fresh one if you mouth off again.

Offline Dann

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I'm sorry. It's really difficult for me to understand Erv's wording of things. This is my first Tri-Cree. I thought that I could put both the Blue and the Green positives from the Tri-Cree to the LED positive on the board, so they'd mix together to make a sort of Cyan. I'll take another look at the manual, but like I say, it's difficult to understand the way he describes things.

Offline Dann

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So after some research, I'm thinking my plan should be to go the "simple single cell color mixing" route.

Single Cell CF & Simple Color Mixing - YouTube

I'll put the Green die on channel 1, Blue w/2 watt 1 Ohm resistor on channel 2, and White with another 2 watt 1 Ohm resistor on channel 3 for the FoC.

I also have some little 470 Ohm resistors I can use in the accent LED area for my little Blue 3mm accent LEDs, although I've seen people simply bridge the pads for 3mm Blue LEDs. I reckon it's better safe than sorry.

I've replaced the speaker wire with some 28 gauge, as well.

Does this sound like it should work?

Thanks, folks.

Online K-2SO

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Yes, that should work ok. The Accent LEDs should only need something like a 68 Ohm resistor. Since the accent pads only put out  3.3V and 18 mA of power

I find your arguments vague and unconvincing.

Quiet! *Slap* And there’s a fresh one if you mouth off again.

Offline Yoda

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I know a lot of this can be confusing but your on the right track
and asking questions and testing before installing is always best.

You can do the pseudo color mix but you may be pressed for space in
that chassis where the board sits.

I believe you are using a Tri Cree for the Main LED and because you
are doing the 3 cell hack to the CF the Main LED run in parallel
and depending on if you want more green or blue in the blade color
will determine what resistance you may want to add per color.

Also depending on the current you want to run through it if your
going to try to max them out then some level of resistor can help
to avoid blowing one of the two Main color LEDs

You will need to resistor the FoC white LED and to be safe when
doing the FoC you can specify in the configuration file to drop
the Blue and Green down a bit when the white kicks in.

This will help with no drawing to much off a single cell during FoC
for run time and battery life.

For your accent LEDs if you are using a good quality like Kingbright
or Cree SMD or 3mm LEDs you should be able to use a lower Ohm resistor
on those in the 5-20 ohm range as I'm supposing your using Green and blue
in the chamber as well.
Most Cree or Kingbright 3mm and SMD leds are rated for 3.0 - 3.4 volts
and typically ask for 20 mah so the delivery of the 3.3 and 18 mah from
the CF isn't going to hurt anyhting for the colors you are using.

It really becomes and issue if you are using Red Yellow Orange or Cheap Green
accent type LEDs as they have much lower forward voltages.

Again the best thing to do is to attach all your components to a strip of
plastic or breadboard as the electronic minded would say and wire things up
and test to see if you are getting the results you want.

something to keep in mind when working with Green and Blue is the Green tends
to over power the blue visually in brightness and hue when lit up so you can
adjust your color accordingly once you get a look at things under power :wink:





Offline Dann

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Re: CF8 Single Cell FoC Tri Cree Graflex Wiring Help MB Chassis Solo's Hold
« Reply #10 on: January 05, 2018, 07:50:39 AM »
Thanks again, y'all. Really appreciate you taking the time to reply!

I'll likely have more questions once I've tested things.

Offline Dann

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Re: CF8 Single Cell FoC Tri Cree Graflex Wiring Help MB Chassis Solo's Hold
« Reply #11 on: January 18, 2018, 12:10:59 PM »
So I've got everything working pretty well, still need to wire up the RICE port, but I'm having an aux switch issue.

The aux switch works for changing color mix, but not for blaster blocking or lockup or font selection.

I must've wired my switches wrong, I just can't figure out what I've done.

Anyone have this issue before?

Offline Dark Navel

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Re: CF8 Single Cell FoC Tri Cree Graflex Wiring Help MB Chassis Solo's Hold
« Reply #12 on: January 18, 2018, 02:13:07 PM »
Could be incorrect wiring or possibly bad switch.  It may help to have the battery fully charged but doesn't sound like that is the issue, but you never know.  Make sure to check the board as well to make sure you haven't bridged any of the pads.

I would look at these first.

Offline Yoda

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Re: CF8 Single Cell FoC Tri Cree Graflex Wiring Help MB Chassis Solo's Hold
« Reply #13 on: January 18, 2018, 05:57:33 PM »
Hey there Dann

Just moved another similar topic into Ervs section and you may get some better answers there :wink:
Aux switch half working (solved)