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#18765 - 08/28/03 01:19 PM Re: Home made "life capsule"
NAro Offline

Registered: 03/15/01
Posts: 470
What are the objections to using PVC pipe, end caps, screw caps, etc.? Are we expecting this to be beaten up beyond the strength of PVC?

#18766 - 08/28/03 01:25 PM Re: Home made "life capsule"
paramedicpete Offline

Registered: 04/09/02
Posts: 1920
Loc: Frederick, Maryland
There is an aluminum weld rod product that can be melted with a propane torch; I picked some up at a outdoor sport show a while back. I think I will try to cut an aluminum plug from some flashing and weld it into place. I let you all know if and how it works out. Pete

#18767 - 08/28/03 03:58 PM Re: Home made "life capsule"
OldBaldGuy Offline

Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 5695
Loc: Former AFB in CA, recouping fr...
Maybe I am missing something here, but couldn't you just buy a Mag Solitare and strip all of the guts out of it? You would end up with a little single diameter alum tube with the tail cap on one end and nothing inside all the way to the lens, which you could probably replace with some non-breakable substance if you wanted...

#18768 - 08/28/03 08:36 PM Re: Home made "life capsule"

<img src="images/graemlins/confused.gif" alt="" />***Maybe I am missing something here, but couldn't you just buy a Mag Solitare and strip all of the guts out of it? ****

Where's the fun in that? <img src="images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />

Actually I was thinking just that with a mini-Mag sized light. Remove the head, seal the end with a disk of cardboard, and apply a nice thick coat of JBWeld over the end and threads. After it dries it can be sanded smooth no sweat. It might not look as cool as a fancy, machined plug, but it should serve just as well unless you really have to have access from both ends.


#18769 - 08/29/03 02:24 AM Re: Home made "life capsule"
RayW Offline

Registered: 12/06/01
Posts: 550
Loc: Orlando, FL
Hey Pete, i didn't have much luck with that stuff. Didn't spend enough time with it. But i have talked to a few people that have used it successfully. It works more like solder than "welding" make sure you clean the area very well, a stainless steel toothbrush is the recommended cleaning tool. Don't melt the substrate metal you just want to get it hot enough for the rod to flow. Aluminum doesn't change color as it heats up the way steel does, it goes from being satin looking to being shiny and then turns into a puddle on your workbench. It just takes practice to get it. From what i have been told it also looks better than TIG welding for some of the lesser quality metals, but if you need strength have it TIG welded. Let us know how you do.

#18770 - 08/29/03 03:03 AM Re: Home made "life capsule"
AyersTG Offline

Registered: 12/10/01
Posts: 1272
Loc: Upper Mississippi River Valley...
I agree - and you're right, it is solder. I've found it mildly useful but not enough so to bother with. I've found it to be a PITA to use well - the proper cleaning of the joint is critical for a good mechanical bond and cleaned aluminum IMMEDIATELY starts getting ucky with a protective film of aluminum oxide, so don't get distracted.

JB Weld is great stuff and if you're impatient like me a 165 - 200 deg-F toaster oven is miraculous in accelerating the cure time to just a few minutes. (immersing a part in a ziplok in boiling water works, too, so this tip works OK in the field as well) For common off-the-shelf 2 part epoxies, JB Weld is superior to anything else I have used.

There are some other concoctions that are useful, like Brownell's Accru glass line and some unusual one part metal-filled offerings aimed at automotive repairs (high temp stuff) that I've found actually work as-advertised, but JB Weld is very widely available.

Epoxy putty is also very handy for that sort of thing - it's like playing with plasticene modeling clay and it takes a cure fairly quickly. It tools very well but is not as bomb proof as JB Weld. However, it's cheap and really easy to use. And while I have that thought in my mind... I've carried a "scrap" of epoxy putty in my repair kit for many years and it has really saved the day a few times. Just cut off a piece and wrap it up (I just used cling wrap most of the time, although I get fancy every so often and seal a bit up in a mylar bag.) Not as problematic to carry as tubes of resin and hardener.

Alcohol cleans off partially cured epoxy from your fingers very readily after molding the putty. Ethyl (denatured) works best IME, but even common rubbing alcohol works. You can also use alcohol to clean-up epoxy "overruns" from your parts before it is fully cured, but don't hose it on - dampen a cotton swab or corner of a rag with alcohol and scrub with it.

Pete, looking forward to hearing how your soldering project turns out! Post pictures if you can, please.



#18771 - 08/30/03 01:32 AM Re: Home made "life capsule"
RayW Offline

Registered: 12/06/01
Posts: 550
Loc: Orlando, FL
Never thought of using boiling water to accelerate the cure of JB, will have to try that the next time. Thanks. Usually keep JBquik in the truck for those fast repairs, in the heat down here JBquik sets up in a couple of minutes so you have to work really fast.

For epoxy putty have you ever tried PC 7? It seems to be about the same quality as JB but you can put it on the bottom of something without it dripping off and it is moldable and it keeps it's shape.

#18772 - 09/02/03 06:01 PM Re: Solitaire

YEARS AGO, I used to keep a pair of ear plugs on my keychain in an old Mag Lite Solitaire that had lost it's bulb (I was in a very loud Punk/Hardcore band at the time). I never thought much of it...


#18773 - 09/04/03 03:32 PM Re: Home made "life capsule"
Casual_Hero Offline
new member

Registered: 11/19/02
Posts: 134
Loc: England & Saudi Arabia
Hope no-ones covered this (one of those threads that gets so long you can't be bothered reading all of it!). Take two used shotgun cases. Heat the brass end on one to release. Cut crimped end off other, fill with items then seal with the brass end from the first case. Simple and easy, but not one where you are going to constantly open and close it.
In the end, all you have left is style...

#18774 - 09/07/03 11:56 AM Re: Home made "life capsule"

Why not just cut a disk of aluminium the same dimentions as the lens from the maglite and just put it in its place.

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