Author Topic: PRESENTING: The Dam-Cham...  (Read 298361 times)

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Offline MR Bulk

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PRESENTING: The Dam-Cham...
« on: March 26, 2006, 03:36:42 AM »
UPDATE 8-29-06:

A few more pics...

This one is the most striking - I figure the interleaving of metals was thinnest in those layers and were just starting to change to a new color range - 'cept it ain't mine, it's 20 - daaaaang it!:

Hey waitaminute - it belongs to one of the listees who hasn't responded yet...:thinking:


UPDATE 8-28-06:

Better pics...


We have the HAT Event tentatively set for this coming weekend (Sept.2/3) after which the lights will begin shipping.  Thus it is time to request that you transact your remaining balances, PayPal preferred, to avoid delivery delays.

If you see this and are on the DC list, please contact me otherwise I shall contact you privately.  I thank you for your considerable patience all these months; the Damascus Chameleon's time is nearly at hand.

*Note: I regret that requests for blue tritium cannot be fulfilled.  The green (which is brighter) tritium was purchased and delivered from overseas a while ago; however, those who will pursue doing this on their own should let me know immediately so that I can package their green vials separately, as once the vials are glued into their snugly fitting slots, replacing them with another would require destruction of the installed vial.


UPDATE 8-26-06:

Our Damascus Chameleons are back from their sauna (heat treating), and the colors are - different...

I'll let y'all be the judges, but to be honest the new colors are in fact what I was hoping for the first time around when the protos were heat treated (sorry for the poor quality, the pics were taken with what I had on me - namely my cellphone cam):

Here is what the color of these is like next to the original proto, one of which I brought with me:

I have been told by Mr. Del Ely that dependent upon several factors, most importantly the temperature and length of time the Damascus is subjected to heat, there may be different resulting coloring.

I feel a HAT Event coming on next weekend, barring schedule conflicts with any of the MadHatters.


UPDATE 4-7-06:

And we have closure!

FINAL list:

"00" MR Bulk

"01" EricMack

"02" Fishman

"03" PhotonFanatic

"04" arewethereyetdad

"05" tonyd

"06" Kenster

"07" Geologist

"08" gregw

"09" fore

"10" seattlite

"11" aib

"12" marcspar

"13" flashgreenie

"14" RPM

"15" Steve Stephens

"16" BraddahBill

"17" FlashMike

"18" flashlight

"19" Regentag

"20" Grumpy

"21" Likebright

"22" MorpheusT1

"23" PoliceScannerMan

Please put subsequent DamCham posts here as the number-pickin' thread is now closed.

Thank you.


UPDATE: 4-4-06:

Due to my error the back-up list has been amended.  Thanks for your continued patience.

UPDATE 4-1-06:

Deposits sent to date:

All but one.

*Kindly let me know if you find any discrepancies.


UPDATE 3-30-06:

Just got off an extensive phone conversation with the steelmaker today, and here is the scoop as to what is involved in bringing this project to a successful close within a time frame that does not have a different last number on the year - the steel maker forges these bars by hand and can only do 1 (that's ONE) bar, about a foot long, at a time.  Hence it will be a rather long process before we get them all machined, heat treated and back here to build and ship.  There has been nothing closer to a handmade light body up to this point than the DamCham.

Despite this long ramp up period, I would have to commit financially to this project in order to have things begin, and will need to collect your deposits fairly soon - in fact some are already inquiring when they can send theirs in - so please expect a $200 deposit request within a few days.

Other news:

REGENTAG has just assumed the last spot on the list due to an unfortunate drop out.  But family comes first, I always say.

Stay tuned.




UPDATE 3-28-06:

*NOTE - Come to think of it, due to the probable unique nature of each light's patterns, serializing may not be necessary.  It has already been asked whether some lights could be made without serial numbers and just the engraved Chameleon logo on the butt cap.  Whatsay?  Would some people be interested in having their DamChams made this way?

*EDIT: "ser# delete" has been indicated by people on the list wanting this option (at no charge, heh heh).


Update 3-27-06:

When all the slots are taken I will eventually move this thread to B/S/T.  If there is an excess of interested parties, they can go on a backup list to displace dropouts.

In going over the original posts on this thread, discounting the "Wows" and "Dayums" and other kind words, it looks like the priority for calling out which number you want will follow this sequence:

Name - Preferred Serial #

1 EricMack - (ser# delete)

2 Fishman - #2

3 gregw - #8
4 tonyd - (ser# delete)

5 PhotonFanatic - (lowest # possible)

6 arewethereyetdad - #7

7 Kenster - (ser# delete)

8 Geologist - (ser# delete)

9 RPM - (ser# delete)

10 MorpheusT1 - #10

11 marcspar - #4, #5, #24, #12

12 flashgreenie - #13

13 BraddahBill - (any)

14 aib - #11, #12, #13

15 seattlite - (ser# delete)

16 PoliceScannerMan - (ser# delete)

17 FlashMike - #17, #16, #24

18 Grumpy - (ser# delete)

19 fore - (ser# delete)

20 flashlight - #18, #23, #17

21 Steve Stephens - #23, #24

22 Likebright - #19

23 Regentag

*NOTE - Those with the ??? icon next to their names should post their number or numbers - preferably three choices - in order of preference.  And of course common sense shall prevail - for example no one should be picking #2 since Fishman was the first in line and is already assured of getting it.

All 23 "guaranteed" spots are now reserved (pending deposits soon).  Newer folks will replace, in order, any dropouts when deposits are requested:

Back-up buyers in sequential order (one light per person, please):




London Lad






Update 3-26-06:

The Damascus steelmaker is Mr. Delbert Ely, and he has assured me the steel is the same as William Henry's, except custom laminated in a wider and bolder pattern for this light so that the Damascus appearance is immediately apparent to the casual onlooker (I figure you don't buy something like this to Not show around), and although there is never a rust PROOF steel, the learned comments so kindly made by Karl and tonyd for our edification would likely be the most accurate summation of this material's rust resistance.  Keep in mind my primary purpose for creating the world's (first and only?) heat colorized Damascus steel light was to offer an exclusive appearance and patterning not readily available with any other method/material commonly used in custom lights.

I am making these lights with the best *proven* components available that have been tried and true up to this point in time, and thus we will stick with the Luxeon/MR-reflector combination and of course George's incredible FIVE-current-tabled electronics, with the exception of the fact that anyone able to locate "U"-binned Luxeons possessing still an "H" Vf bin code is welcome to buy them immediately  (at almost any price) and I will take them off your hands for that same amount.  Just to have the best *proven* Luxeons for the DamCham's setup.

And yet with that said, price is going to kept within the realm of reality as has been my past practice - except of course I WILL NOT lose money on this as I did with the dang Ti-Cham's!  The $110 per inch is what the final total cost is for body production, meaning we actually needed almost six inches to grind out the ~3 inches of total light length (counting the threaded areas that nest into one another), so it's not six times $110, but more like 3.  The only bummer to this whole thing is how much beautifully colored Damascus has to be chipped away from the 1.25" solid barstock to get down to what actually makes up the light itself...:sad3:

Anyway not to skirt the issue, but - not counting the discovery/purchase of U-binned H-Vf Luxeons of course - the DamCham should not exceed five hundred bucks.  Or actually make that under  this figure, or: "The DamCham will cost less than $500 (not counting shipping)."

After machining the two prototype bodies, the CNC shop indicated they would not be interested in making more than two dozen (reminded them too much of Ti, they said), so there would never be more than twenty four DamChams, thus maintaining a fair amount of exclusivity for the eventual owners.

Hopefully I've addressed most concerns so I'm off to work right now...serial number pickin's will go in order of post chronology on this thread, to be transferred to a formal purchase thread in B/S/T soon (of course 01/24 is already reserved).

Thanks for your support.


Original post:

Not having ever done a flashlight using a truly  exotic material (Titanium doesn't count since everyone seems to be using it now), I took a deep breath and went in for a blend of metals - which was folded, smooshed, and then refolded again actually - into something people call "damascus".  The stuff usually reserved for uber-expensive, hand-made custom knives.

But I wanted to be even more different, and there is indeed a "different" way of preparing damascus.  By treating it with tremendous - yet judiciously applied - quantities of heat to get the different ingredient metals to actually change color.  Amazing.

This particular material was procured from the same source supplying these heat-treated steels for the latest William Henry custom knives, which were proudly on display in their booth at last month's SHOT Show in Las Vegas (hey, I don't travel 3,000-4,000 miles from Hawaii fer nuthin').

And so I was able to convince them to produce this damascus - normally forged in flats for knife blades - in solid, 1.25" diameter bar stock for flashlight profiles.

I will let the following pitchers do the talking, but preface them with the announcement that this thread is to assess interest in getting a small run of these lights made, so please post here if this should appeal to you:

If all goes as planned there will only be a limited number of these made because I don't think there will be enough people willing to part with the kind of money this light will cost.  To put it bluntly, just the cost of the hand-folded, color-heat-treated, CNC-machined bodies exceeds $110 PER INCH, thanks in no small part to the waste material that the chuck jaws must grab onto while turning each piece.

I don't think anyone has yet made a damascus light with the multi-colored hues this one displays, all produced naturally from within the material itself with no coloring agents and just heat treating processes affecting the multiple leaves of steel in this particular Damascus combination.

An incidental bonus is that steel possesses better thermal characteristics than Titanium.

And with the way the colors change and blend into one another, what better light was there to make with this than the Chameleon?  It will come complete with the deep-engraved lizard logo on endcap similar to the Ti-Chameleon, plus serializing in the same way using a "xx/24" format on each Control Module.

There will be no more than two dozen of these made available, so please indicate your interest here.  Due to the exorbitant cost of each unit, I will need to take advance deposits once the project is deemed to be a Go.

As usual, Thanks for your interest. :thumbsup:
« Last Edit: February 13, 2007, 04:37:47 AM by arewethereyetdad »
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Offline loalight

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Re: PRESENTING: The Dam-Cham...
« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2006, 03:43:23 AM »
  Ti LC UW0K    HA3 Nat LH #001 UW0K    LT  Draco

Offline TorchMan

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Re: PRESENTING: The Dam-Cham...
« Reply #2 on: March 26, 2006, 03:58:13 AM »
It sure looks awesome. I would definitely not be able to do this though I'd love to! Maybe if I win the lotto. Great idea, Charlie.
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Offline RPM

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Re: PRESENTING: The Dam-Cham...
« Reply #3 on: March 26, 2006, 04:03:32 AM »
Now that is something!  We cut titanium all the time in our shop, but DAMASCUS bar stock!! Yikes! That is way too cool.  :icon_cheers:

Offline Rudi

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Re: PRESENTING: The Dam-Cham...
« Reply #4 on: March 26, 2006, 04:06:15 AM »
Beautiful, but heavy.

Offline bwaites

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Re: PRESENTING: The Dam-Cham...
« Reply #5 on: March 26, 2006, 04:19:58 AM »
Dang you!!!

I had a light all planned and you beat me to the punch!!

Awesome job, though!!


Offline Lightstream

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Re: PRESENTING: The Dam-Cham...
« Reply #6 on: March 26, 2006, 04:27:13 AM »
Hot DAMN!!

That's one damn fine and damn expensive Dam-Cham...... :icon_biggrin: :rotflmao:

I must pass.. as correctly identified, at $110 per inch, it may be well out of my league. But I just wanted to congratulate on you having achieved a masterpiece.. just successfully building a couple of one-off items (like Larrylights? :)) for show would be achievement enough.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2006, 04:29:04 AM by Lightstream »
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Offline fore

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Re: PRESENTING: The Dam-Cham...
« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2006, 04:37:16 AM »
Damn you, Bulk!  Crap, that is too cool.
that rug really tied the room together...

Offline FlashMike

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Re: PRESENTING: The Dam-Cham...
« Reply #8 on: March 26, 2006, 05:02:53 AM »
Just to test my understanding, the net price of a Dam-Cham would be in the $5000+ range (3+ inches of light + waste).  Is this about right?

Offline Lips

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Re: PRESENTING: The Dam-Cham...
« Reply #9 on: March 26, 2006, 05:18:07 AM »
That sounds a little off...
Fire Foxes FF4 in stock and ready to ship.
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Offline Wilsonite

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Re: PRESENTING: The Dam-Cham...
« Reply #10 on: March 26, 2006, 05:27:48 AM »
That is so incredibly beautiful!  Ti is way out of my price range, let alone this.  There will be some very lucky dudes out there on this one!  Way to go Charlie!!  NICE WORK!!!
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Offline flashlight

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Re: PRESENTING: The Dam-Cham...
« Reply #11 on: March 26, 2006, 06:23:23 AM »
So is it like high chrome or high carbon content & will it be prone to rust?

My interest will depend on the final cost & Mondays lottery result.  :P
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Offline Nedtheshred

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Re: PRESENTING: The Dam-Cham...
« Reply #12 on: March 26, 2006, 07:16:14 AM »
I'm interested...Charlie,
Count me in please.

Offline kukula

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Re: PRESENTING: The Dam-Cham...
« Reply #13 on: March 26, 2006, 09:33:34 AM »
I have been somewhat busy lately and havent been active here at the boards.  And then this  8)  My concern too is that Damascus steel is prone to corrosion?  Is there some treatment here to prevent this from happening?  I surely would hate it to EDC such a beautiful work of art and only to end up oiling it every night, just like a knife or a gun.  Guess its one reason why I love Glocks  :P Any price indicative for this one Charlie?  Pls do PM me  ;)

Offline BigHonu

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Re: PRESENTING: The Dam-Cham...
« Reply #14 on: March 26, 2006, 09:42:55 AM »