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  1. BLEZ

    BLEZ Oakley Enthusiast Premium Member

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    I'm a huge X-Metal-head and a Flashaholic (addiction to flashlights. See below). If you have ever been on Candlepower forums, then you know that the craft work required to fabricate custom metal designs is best displayed when looking at today's custom titanium flashlight fabrication. These are not "production" but rather, done in "waves" or "runs". The quality of workmanship and technical expertise is unrivaled anywhere else. Does anyone fabricate X-Metal-like frames ? I'd love to get some X-Squared frames from a modder that does this stuff like this ----- Does Anyone Fabricate X-Metal-like Frames? - ra7uqy3u.jpg Does Anyone Fabricate X-Metal-like Frames? - 7u8e5a4a.jpg Does Anyone Fabricate X-Metal-like Frames? - yzeqarej.jpg
     
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  2. washi me sensie

    washi me sensie The Oakley R┼Źnin

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    those look sick bro!!
     
  3. Rustpot

    Rustpot M Frame Lover Premium Member

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    What makes you say that? Most of those designs look fairly straightforward for someone with a CNC multi-axis machining lathe.
     
  4. BLEZ

    BLEZ Oakley Enthusiast Premium Member

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    Do you know what Tritium is and the process used to install it? Google these two threads, 1) Jeff Hanko tribute thread
    2) TAIN Tribute thread
    Then get back to me and tell me how "straightforward" it is.
     
  5. I've got to agree with @Rustpot here. While some of those lights are impressive, the expertise level of making one is questionable. They are beautiful, sure, but milling titanium bar stock into a decorative cylinder isn't even close to being on the same level as cast titanium alloy, which is what Xmetal is. You won't find anyone here making custom frames because the process is far too difficult/dangerous/expensive for a hobbyist to attempt.

    That said we do have members like @qtrain that modify frame through anodizing or electroplating, and other members that paint or media blast xmetals to change their appearance.
     
  6. BLEZ

    BLEZ Oakley Enthusiast Premium Member

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    Ok, let's not get into a pissing contest, but, undoubtedly, making a custom fabricated (Damascus/ Ti/Cu/BeCu ) flashlight with tritium, thermally potted, custom heat-sink and driver, cryos cooling bezel, custom emitter, specific 18mm battery diameter, ect,ect.... VS a pair of sunglasses that have two functions - open and close ???please be serious !!!!
     
  7. Rustpot

    Rustpot M Frame Lover Premium Member

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    Yeah, I'm familiar with it. Gunsmiths have been installing tritium tubes for years. I redid a set of sights with tritium. It wasn't some kind of black magic. The trickiest part was finding someone to sell and ship radioactive materials.

    Don't get me wrong, there's a lot of time and tool changes on some CNC equipment there. It's a nicely finished product. It takes time and dedication to make. The bedding for the tritium tubes is difficult to get perfect.

    I really like the knurling on the Tain lights in the thread you mentioned second. It's tough to cut continuous knurling on varied diameters. Fortunately we have computers that makes it easier. I've seen a master gunsmith cut PERFECT 25 LPI checkering by hand. It was a sight to behold.


    You're talking VERY different things. The turning and CNC work is well done, but its far from super difficult. Some electronics work, yeah I can't do that.

    But the X Metals you're talking about are contour surfaces. It takes a MUCH higher skillset to be able to model and create them over a flashlight body. Which is why casting was chosen, to even think of trying to make them in any other way (especially in the mid 90's) is pure lunacy. Trouble is you'd need a few hundred thousand in setup alone.

    Completely different animals. And to trivialize the designs as just opening and closing... yeah, not that simple.

    Which is why you have hobbyists and artists making flashlights. You can do 5 of them no problem. It would take a bit of time and skill, but it wouldn't take nearly the investment or refined skillset.
     
    Supero100 and digi7alph0enix like this.
  8. No pissing contest intended. My personal opinion is based on the nature of crafting both items. While the lights are impressive, they are built using processes that are common with equipment and parts that are readily available. Given a few weeks and access to some CNC and lathes, I could make one. That's why there are forums dedicated to people making custom ones.

    How many people have ever made cast titanium glasses? To my knowledge, only Oakley. When Jim started the project he was told it was impossible and set out to prove others wrong. Even now over a decade since xmetals came to life not one of us here could fabricate one from scratch using the same process.

    That's my only point here. I meant no disrespect. If you are looking for custom cast xmetals, you'll never find them.
     
  9. BLEZ

    BLEZ Oakley Enthusiast Premium Member

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    I love this conversation, it's fascinating to hear different perspectives. I agree, there is something "magical" about X-Metal, ever since I got my serialized penny's in 1998 (I think?).
     
  10. Rustpot

    Rustpot M Frame Lover Premium Member

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    This is a legitimate question, I'm not trying to be snarky or anything ;

    What happens if/when you break a tube, one falls out, or 10-15 years when they're all dim? Maybe the first two aren't as much of a concern since these probably aren't going to be used hard enough to have things break. I know in guns and watches the vials have a tendency to not stay put. And tritium's half life is 12.5 years, so you're going to have some go out in that time frame, especially when you're changing color and have that many of them.