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12/11/2018 1:58:31 AM
Posted: 11/13/2018 11:09:58 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/13/2018 11:17:02 PM EST by AutoTargets]
I've been looking for a solution for this for awhile (and I know others have too). The TAPS Pro seems like a very elegant solution but with it being on back order I decided to make something myself instead of waiting.

Basically I wanted a single pressure switch that would activate both my Steiner OTAL-C IR and Surefire M600V at the same time. You can't simply splice the wires together because they run at different voltages, and one will back feed into the other. Which is obviously not good. Also, you can't just use diodes to prevent the back feeding because the diodes will create a voltage drop which will likely cause the laser to not work.

So the solution I found was to use two solid-state relays and a CR2032 coin cell lithium battery to drive them. They can handle up to 2 amps each which is enough for both devices.

If I want to run just the laser, I can set the Surefire to the "off" position and use the pressure switch. And if I want to run just the flashlight I can turn the OTAL to the "off" position.

This is still a work in progress, and I have some ideas to improve it. For one, I'd like to swap the pressure switch for a dual one with two buttons. I can make one button fire both devices simultaneously, and the other fire just the laser. This one would bypass the entire circuit, and still function in the event that the CR2032 battery died.

As you can see in the pictures, the circuit lives inside my Magpul vertical grip. The original intent was to 3D print a small rail-mounted housing, but I think installing it in the grip is much cleaner looking. I just had to drill a small hole in the back to run the wires. I still need to come up with a plug or something on the bottom to hold the circuit board in.

Anyway, if anyone has any questions about how I did this let me know. I'd be happy to share schematics if it could help someone.







ETA:

The Mouser part number for the solid state relay is 849-LAA710S. You will need two of these. Each one is actually two relays in one, but they only handle 1 amp so I paralleled them together in pairs. The main board is just an Adafruit CR2032 battery holder that I got off amazon.
Link Posted: 11/14/2018 12:39:20 AM EST
Looks interesting thanks for sharing. I subbed for updates
Link Posted: 11/14/2018 9:04:34 AM EST
Interesting.
Link Posted: 11/14/2018 6:49:32 PM EST
Nice defiantly cheaper than a taps pro
Link Posted: 11/15/2018 10:27:19 AM EST
sub for more info. looks like a great solution
Link Posted: 11/15/2018 9:54:29 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/15/2018 9:56:45 PM EST by boltcatch]
My lazy solution is to get a new-old-stock or lightly used SF pressure pad on Ebay, chop off the plug, then splice it on to one of the OEM Steiner Y-cables that come with a bunch of the DBALs (since I had some sitting around).

SF and Steiner polarity is reversed on the inner/outer wires, if you do this. It's just a tiny coax with braided wiring.

So far I haven't found anything else to have one regular sized, normalish (not a fan of the TAPS buttons, just personal preference) pressure pad hit up both laser and light unless you have a Steiner light.
Link Posted: 11/15/2018 10:33:11 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By boltcatch:
My lazy solution is to get a new-old-stock or lightly used SF pressure pad on Ebay, chop off the plug, then splice it on to one of the OEM Steiner Y-cables that come with a bunch of the DBALs (since I had some sitting around).

SF and Steiner polarity is reversed on the inner/outer wires, if you do this. It's just a tiny coax with braided wiring.

So far I haven't found anything else to have one regular sized, normalish (not a fan of the TAPS buttons, just personal preference) pressure pad hit up both laser and light unless you have a Steiner light.
View Quote
Please post a pic
Link Posted: 11/15/2018 11:19:03 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/15/2018 11:26:10 PM EST by AutoTargets]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By boltcatch:
My lazy solution is to get a new-old-stock or lightly used SF pressure pad on Ebay, chop off the plug, then splice it on to one of the OEM Steiner Y-cables that come with a bunch of the DBALs (since I had some sitting around).

SF and Steiner polarity is reversed on the inner/outer wires, if you do this. It's just a tiny coax with braided wiring.

So far I haven't found anything else to have one regular sized, normalish (not a fan of the TAPS buttons, just personal preference) pressure pad hit up both laser and light unless you have a Steiner light.
View Quote
Unless the Steiner Y cable is two separate circuits (like a double pole switch) this would be back feeding 6 volts from the flashlight into the laser. I'd be worried about causing damage running it like this. No real way to know without schematics of the laser but I think you're taking a gamble.

ETA: Even if the laser can handle 6 volts, you'll be syncing current between the batteries which could be really bad. If it works I'm assuming you've only had it on for a few moments at a time? I would think continuous operation would be a problem.
Link Posted: 11/16/2018 1:06:47 AM EST
[Last Edit: 11/16/2018 1:45:29 AM EST by boltcatch]
I use 16650's instead of 123's in my Vampire, so it's 3-something volts instead of 6.

However, the Y-cable is purpose made for combining lights that take at least 6 volts with Steiner lasers, so I'm not too worried about it. My oldest setup is several months old with a number of night shoots on it. No promises, but no problems yet either.

This Y cable

It's probably not a very cost effective setup unless you have a bunch of extra Y cables sitting around, and cheap surplus shop SF switches to pirate plugs from.

...

I don't post very many pics anymore. However, these are the types of materials I'm using for the splice;

Self soldering butt connectors

Adhesive lined heat shrink tubing

Cheapo heat gun for the shrink tubing and butt connectors. Depending on how cheap your heat gun is (think $20 hobby model), you may struggle to melt the low temp solder.

I cut the SF plug about 2.5" from the plug, same for the Steiner plug. You're going to end up with about 1/2" of overlap so plan accordingly. You want the splice to go some place you don't need to bend it.

Slide your outer shrink tubing over the Steiner side. Don't forget this or you're hosed.

In matching the SF plug to the Steiner cable, you match the outer sheath wire to the inner wire on the other side. This means stripping the outer cover for about an inch; the Steiner coax sheath should unravel easy, the Surefire needs to be picked apart gently from the end with a dental pick or awl. After you have access to the inner strand, strip that about 3/4".

Now you can match inner and outer from opposite sides together; doesn't matter which one you do first, just butt connector them together one after the other. Helps to have a little solder station with alligator clips to hold stuff; just make sure the clip teeth don't puncture the cover of the wiring. If you do it right, the shrink tube butt connector on the inner wire side will overlap the insulation, preventing any possibility of outer and inner touching.

Then you slide the outer shrink tube cover (which is now trapped on the cable, because you did put it on before splicing, right?) down and heat it.

Diagram:

Attachment Attached File


Also handy:

- Larue wire retention clips as needed
- Manta switch holder

I ended up taking leftover parts and now have a Surefire tape switch with Steiner/Insight plug on it, heh. I use it as a spare. What we really desperately need is something of similar construction and cost to the Steiner Y cable that has these plugs.
Link Posted: 11/16/2018 9:20:45 AM EST
From what I understand, the Steiner Y cable is intended only for plugging into the "white light override" port of their lasers, not the regular pressure switch port. Although it's impossible to know without a schematic. I'd like to reach out to Steiner for clarification.
Link Posted: 11/16/2018 11:52:18 AM EST
“What we really desperately need is something of similar construction and cost to the Steiner Y cable that has these plugs”

+10000
Link Posted: 11/16/2018 4:08:43 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By AutoTargets:
From what I understand, the Steiner Y cable is intended only for plugging into the "white light override" port of their lasers, not the regular pressure switch port. Although it's impossible to know without a schematic. I'd like to reach out to Steiner for clarification.
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Well I'll obviously let everyone know if I fry an OTAL, but I imagine that the vis laser on a DBAL A3 would run into the same potential problems.

I haven't noticed any odd operation with OTAL/DBAL/CQBL.
Link Posted: 11/16/2018 4:14:36 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By boltcatch:

Well I'll obviously let everyone know if I fry an OTAL, but I imagine that the vis laser on a DBAL A3 would run into the same potential problems.

I haven't noticed any odd operation with OTAL/DBAL/CQBL.
View Quote
It's probably just a matter of heat. If you are syncing current but it's a small amount (and for short time periods) you might be able to get away with it. I would just avoid holding the button down for extended periods of time. Unless you want to be a guinea pig for the rest of us of course
Link Posted: 11/17/2018 11:51:46 PM EST
If it's possible to fry them, then I most likely will. I break stuff all the time. OEM use for the switch combines a 2x CR123 light and the DBAL vis laser, so (fingers crossed) I really do think it'll be fine.

I suspect the circuits in the switch are isolated from each other - if you press really lightly, you can get one device and not both.
Link Posted: 11/18/2018 8:49:02 AM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By boltcatch:

I suspect the circuits in the switch are isolated from each other - if you press really lightly, you can get one device and not both.
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That’s really interesting. Any way you could break out an ohm meter and confirm? I haven’t been able to find an answer to this anywhere.
Link Posted: 11/19/2018 12:21:21 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/19/2018 12:24:44 PM EST by 1ipschoser]
My solution to this problem isn't quite so elegant. If the surefire has a clicky switch, the OTAL pressure pad can be mounted on the laser. Of course, both units can't be switched on at the same time, but with a minimal amount of training it is a workable system.

Link Posted: 11/24/2018 7:35:13 PM EST
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Originally Posted By AutoTargets:

That’s really interesting. Any way you could break out an ohm meter and confirm? I haven’t been able to find an answer to this anywhere.
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If I can find my meter and figure out how to test it, I will post the results.
Link Posted: 11/28/2018 11:55:21 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/28/2018 11:57:59 PM EST by AutoTargets]
UPDATE:

I added a dual pressure switch (chinese knockoff of a Surefire dual switch) to the circuit. The front button fires both the laser and the flashlight, while the back button does only the laser. The back button bypasses the circuit which means it will operate even if the CR2032 battery dies. Works perfectly.

Now I just need a longer rail because the buttons are a little far back and it's a bit of a reach, especially for the rear one. EDIT: Oh yeah, this is on a different gun now, which has a super short rail. I'll be fixing that soon.

Link Posted: 12/2/2018 5:46:45 PM EST
This is a great idea. If you could post some schematics I would appreceate it !
Link Posted: 12/2/2018 11:39:47 PM EST
[Last Edit: 12/2/2018 11:43:31 PM EST by AutoTargets]
Here you go guys:



If you want to add a second switch (like the dual switch I posted above) just wire that in on the output of one of the relays. This will effectively bypass the circuit and activate that device directly.

It helps if you install the relays on a little project board, cut it to size and glue it to the back of the CR2032 battery holder board. I'll post pics of that when I get a chance.
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