Old school Maglite / Magcharger flashlight and installation

Ellie Niner

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@SirRobyn0

Neat score! I've only seen a Magcharger once or twice, but never used one. I've always preferred flashlights with rechargeable batteries (ironic that the 2D Maglite I kept under the seat of my truck is currently sitting on the workbench with an alkaline that pissed itself jammed in the tube), and have used lantern style flashlights with lead acid batteries and a halogen sealed beam until fairly recently... they kicked ass, but the H7550 sealed beams were short lived and a bit pricey.

I don't have any room behind the seatbelt in my truck; there's a speaker at the bottom and plastic trim above it. My usual spot is under the seat... have only had stuff slide out on sh¡t-yer-pants emergency stops, or when descending really steep hills off road.

Is that black plastic brick in your first photo a transformer for plugging in to 120 volt power? If I'm remembering right, NiMH batteries are more susceptible to overcharging than Ni-Cads, and there's a chance that earlier charger doesn't account for that... I'd probably wire it to be powered when the ignition is on so there's less chance of cooking the battery pack.
 

SirRobyn0

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@SirRobyn0

Neat score! I've only seen a Magcharger once or twice, but never used one. I've always preferred flashlights with rechargeable batteries (ironic that the 2D Maglite I kept under the seat of my truck is currently sitting on the workbench with an alkaline that pissed itself jammed in the tube), and have used lantern style flashlights with lead acid batteries and a halogen sealed beam until fairly recently... they kicked ass, but the H7550 sealed beams were short lived and a bit pricey.

I don't have any room behind the seatbelt in my truck; there's a speaker at the bottom and plastic trim above it. My usual spot is under the seat... have only had stuff slide out on sh¡t-yer-pants emergency stops, or when descending really steep hills off road.

Is that black plastic brick in your first photo a transformer for plugging in to 120 volt power? If I'm remembering right, NiMH batteries are more susceptible to overcharging than Ni-Cads, and there's a chance that earlier charger doesn't account for that... I'd probably wire it to be powered when the ignition is on so there's less chance of cooking the battery pack.
I had not thought about the speaker and trim behind the seat belt, that might do in that idea. I keep a set of wrenches under the front on the seat, and I could find another spot for those, to open up that area.

Yes, that's a transformer for plugging into 120V. As you know it came originally with Ni-Cad battery. Now has NiMh. There are two types of magcharger charging cradles and this is definitely the older 80's style. The instruction manual suggests wiring it to key on if installed in a vehicle, but also recommends an overnight charge if drained. I'll probably just wire it to key on and see how that works out.

You may already know this but there is a C-clip on the bulb end of the switch on most non-rechageable maglites. Remove that c-clip and you might be able to push the battery and switch out the front. You can also soak the hole thing in a bath of WD-40. WD is not the most effective at breaking down corrosion, but it will a little overtime, plus it'll lubricate and won't hurt the switch.
 

Ellie Niner

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Yes, that's a transformer for plugging into 120V. As you know it came originally with Ni-Cad battery. Now has NiMh. There are two types of magcharger charging cradles and this is definitely the older 80's style. The instruction manual suggests wiring it to key on if installed in a vehicle, but also recommends an overnight charge if drained. I'll probably just wire it to key on and see how that works out.

You may already know this but there is a C-clip on the bulb end of the switch on most non-rechageable maglites. Remove that c-clip and you might be able to push the battery and switch out the front. You can also soak the hole thing in a bath of WD-40. WD is not the most effective at breaking down corrosion, but it will a little overtime, plus it'll lubricate and won't hurt the switch.
Gotcha... I'm guessing the output to the charger is 12 volts, allowing you to connect it directly into your truck's electrical system? I just looked up the early charging cradle, and it looks like a full charge from dead takes about 14 hours? Depending on how much you're using the flashlight, that might work out... I know I tend to put a lot more hours on my rechargeable stuff, and hardly anything on ones that use alkash¡ts. There's something about chewing through a couple bucks worth of batteries every few hours that bugs me.

I'll take a closer look and see if I can remove that clip to get the switch out through the front. Was able to extract one of the cells through the back, but the one in the middle is really in there tight. I'll try the WD-40 thing, and with the switch out, it'll be easier to brutalize the offending Duracell or Energizer and pick it out in pieces if necessary. If I can get it cleaned up, rechargeables will be going in.
 

SirRobyn0

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Gotcha... I'm guessing the output to the charger is 12 volts, allowing you to connect it directly into your truck's electrical system? I just looked up the early charging cradle, and it looks like a full charge from dead takes about 14 hours? Depending on how much you're using the flashlight, that might work out... I know I tend to put a lot more hours on my rechargeable stuff, and hardly anything on ones that use alkash¡ts. There's something about chewing through a couple bucks worth of batteries every few hours that bugs me.

I'll take a closer look and see if I can remove that clip to get the switch out through the front. Was able to extract one of the cells through the back, but the one in the middle is really in there tight. I'll try the WD-40 thing, and with the switch out, it'll be easier to brutalize the offending Duracell or Energizer and pick it out in pieces if necessary. If I can get it cleaned up, rechargeables will be going in.
I have thought about wiring a switch, so if I ran the flashlight dead I could flip the switch and charge it overnight, I doubt it would run the truck battery dead. Still I'm going to start with the recommended key on only charge and see how it works out for me. I'm like you chewing though disposable batteries ticks me off. It's a small amount of money each time, but adds up.

As for your light I've also heard of guys soaking them in WD and then running a long screw into the battery and pulling it out. Obviously you'll need to be careful of any pressure that might be left in the cell if you go that route.
 

Rusty Nail

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Yeah. Take pix too y dont ya?
 

SirRobyn0

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Ok I took a good look at possible mounting locations and you guys saying behind the seat belt would not work are exactly right.
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Maybe between the seat and the drink holder? That would be ok

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Up above on the shelf looks good up there but I think it would be pretty hard to get the light off it's mount and back on without slamming it into the roof, plus what if it broke loose and came down?
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Uh dirty floor.... on the floor under the edge of the driver seat would work too.
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I'll let ya all know what I decide to do.
 

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Raider L

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@SirRobyn0,

Yeah, I have a collection of those old 6v lantern lights myself. I'd like to use one but the only place those 6 volt batteries, with the threaded screw knobs on top to attach the battery wires, is at one hardware store in town except they cost, well since all these prices have gone up I don't know, but the last time I saw one years ago it was about $15.00. And I'm not going to spend that much on one battery I'd only use maybe once a year if that often. I found most of the ones I have when I used to go to estate sales every week on Fridays and Saturdays. Yeah, I was one of those old guys standing out there at 8 am waiting for the doors to open. I'd hit three or for of them before noon. I have a fairly large kerosene lantern collection to. And again, most of them came from estate sales. Here's some more lights. (pics).
 
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Rusty Nail

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Looks to me like you need a shop vac - y u trippin on flashlights? Dont that serve to make the floor dirty?
Well? Dont it? Haha.
 

SirRobyn0

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Looks to me like you need a shop vac - y u trippin on flashlights? Dont that serve to make the floor dirty?
Well? Dont it? Haha.
It's a little embarrassing to show pictures with all that dirt on the floor, but I wanted ya'll to see my possible locations. The truck does get dirty as it's used on the farm, as well as for my commute but normally gets cleaned every Sunday morning, and I missed last week and haven't driven it since. This will actually be the longest that truck has gone without being driven since I got it, prior to this 3 days was the longest. We have now hit 7, but I have to take it out tomorrow regardless of weather.
 

Raider L

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This is one of the more unique lantern lights I have. This one is a 6 v block kind, not the big 6 volt ones. But different none the less. This light has a "sealed beam" bulb. That's not rust on the bottom just chipped off paint. I think this is '60's. I try to stay in the '50's and '60's stuff I collect because you can usually find more of it and you're not paying "antique" prices.
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It has a 4" bulb and it is bright to. I'm sure I probably didn't pay more than $5.00 for this because I would only carry a $20 bill with me to these estate sales and buy whatever I could find with just that. I never made enough money to carry hundreds of dollars to estate sales. I was't really looking for items I could make a lot of money on later on. I liked getting lots of little things that had a limited dollar value, but a lot of sentimental, or uniqueness value.
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See, it's got the tool box kind of latch on the back. You just throw the block battery in there, close the lid, and turn it on. It seems to me that I remember seeing old fishermen using these things back when I was a kid with my dad when we'd be fishing for Gar.
 

Raider L

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@Ellie Niner,

If those corroded batteries are Ever Ready, you can contact them and tell them about your flashlight and, unless they've stopped, you send the flashlight to them and they will send you a check for a new one! I had the batteries corrode in a mini-Mag one time and contacted them, and they sent me a check for a new one. It's they back up their guarantee like that. They don't want their batteries damging your light and then tough luck. No, they will replace the flashlight.
 

Raider L

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Another one.
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It says "sealed beam", that's a glint on the chrome not damage.
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You sit the light onto the top of the big battery and tighten the knurled knob screws down onto the top of the flashlight. It's another 4" one. It says "weatherproof" but it's got no seal on the underside to sit on the battery. I guess it's weatherproof some other way. Maybe it's talking about the bulb that's weatherproof. That I can see.
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The only thing it's missing is the red lens on the back. It could have very well been glass to. But it could have been plastic. And I have a slue of those screw in 6 volt bulbs. It looks like the lens twist-locked into the rear housing.
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There are two switches on the top, one for the front bulb, and one for the rear light.
 

Raider L

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This one may be late '60's maybe even a early '70's.
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I mean you have to figure they don't make Burgess batteries anymore and haven't for a long time. At least I haven't seen them unless they are being sold under another name. There's a lot of that these days.
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The reason why I say it might be early '70's is the switch, that red thing on top of the handle. It's a cheap production kind, not a brass push button kind, or sliding type. It's a plastic sliding kind. But it still has a sealed beam bulb.
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blurred.
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Better.
"Radar Lite", ha, ha, ha. Now what the heck makes it "radar"? It is bright as heck though. Maybe it's the beam of light shooting out like a beam from a radar dish detecting enemy aircraft. For all you really young guys out there, notice it says "Made In U.S.A." That's the way everything used to be in America!!!!!
 

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