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Thread: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

  1. #1

    Default How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    I dug out an old 4C Maglight and tried to pull the batteries out of it. The first two fell right out, the third took a little persuasion, and the fourth refuses to budge. They were all corroded and swollen.

    Any way I can get that last one out? At this point, I'm ready to chuck the barrel in the trash and keep the rest for spare parts......

  2. #2

    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?


    How many years have the batteries been in place?

    What brand were the batteries?

    Unscrew the head assembly, unscrew the lightbulb holder. Without the bulb in the barrel bang the living hell out of it.

    Walk up to a distasteful foe, test the aircraft aluminum on his forehead. If the barrel "dents at all" after impact then trash the light.

    hehehehe

  3. #3
    *Retired* The_LED_Museum's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by NiMH:
    Unscrew the head assembly, unscrew the lightbulb holder. Without the bulb in the barrel bang the living hell out of it.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    I did that once and the whole bulb receptacle assembly fractured, rendering the flashlight useless.

    If the whole switch and bulb assembly can be removed without damage(leaving the barrel open at both ends), a suitable instrument (broomstick or mop handle?) can be jammed in there to dislodge the offending battery.
    You'll probably have to clean the barrel out with hot water, detergent, and a wire brush to remove the corrosive glorp left behind by the decomposed battery.

    http://ledmuseum.home.att.net

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  4. #4
    Administrator Size15's's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    Maybe it's that the Lithium battery flashlights such as SureFire are so much better that they get far more use.

    It could also be said that Lithium batterys don't last as long so you need to replace them more often...

    If DL123As have a storage life of 5-10 years, then I'd expect them not to leak or degrade during that time.

    Lithium AAs are almost as expensive as DL123As in England. I'm gonna get four for my StealthLite and compare it to Alk AAs in my other StealthLite.

    I'm sure to post with my results in the near future (I bet you alll can't wait! )

  5. #5
    Flashaholic
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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    Personally before giving up, I'd first try pouring a can of Coke Classic in and let it set for....oh a half-hour. The REAL THING has a way of eating through corrosion(its great on battery terminals). My next trick would be spraying some WD-40 and once again letting it sit. Last but not least a mixture of water and baking soda poured in.
    Hmmmmmm better living through chemicals.

  6. #6
    Flashaholic* DavidW's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    If it's a new version (small serial numbers) you can pop the rubber switch cover off to reveal the allen wrench slot. Just give that rubber cover a good pinch. Loosen the allen nut and the switch assembly should pop out. If you have an older Maglite (larger serial numbers) you need a spanner. At which point I'd be thinking it's more trouble than it's worth.

    ------------------
    "A knifeless man is a lifeless man"
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  7. #7
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    I have a new Mag 3D, but it doesn't have a small serial #! I guess you need to define "small" !

    Doug

    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by DavidW:
    If it's a new version (small serial numbers) you can pop the rubber switch cover off to reveal the allen wrench slot. Just give that rubber cover a good pinch. Loosen the allen nut and the switch assembly should pop out. If you have an older Maglite (larger serial numbers) you need a spanner. At which point I'd be thinking it's more trouble than it's worth.

    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


  8. #8

    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    It's an old one. I used a small punch to loosen the "nut" and managed to get the switch out. Of course the switch came outin 5 pieces, but it came out.

    I then used a 1 inch piece of bar stock inserted into the switch end to HAMMER the battery out. I mean, this thing was swole up like a tick (gratuitous Texan lingo) and wasn't letting go!

    Anyway, it's all back together but the switch doesn't work so now I have to open it back up and try to fix. All that to say that I don't trust it enough to put in the wife's car for emergency use. Too much bad voodoo with this light. I'm gonna fix it and keep it around the house for utility use. The wife's car will get a new one.

    Oh and BTW,

    Check your alkaline batteries regularly!!!

    I thought that the days of my youth when batteries would bust open and screw up your stuff were over. Apparently, they are not. Lithiums have spoiled me and made me complacent. Don't let that happen to you!

    <FONT COLOR="#000000" SIZE="1" FACE="Verdana, Arial">This message has been edited by Greggles on 01-15-2001 at 06:14 PM</font>

  9. #9

    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    The batteries were 4 year old Duracells. The light was in a closet for the last few years because my Surefires have proven to be much more useful. I was getting this thing back out to put in the wife's car. So much for that idea.

    Prior to removing the batteries, they put out about 50% of the normal output.

    I stripped it down as much as I could and then beat the but of it against a 2x4 on the garage floor. No go. This last battery is lodged pretty good. I may just take this as a learning experience and chuck the thing in the garbage. It's not worth $20 worth of hassle.

    I hate alkaline batteries. Sure it's my fault for forgetting to change them, but my lithiums have never done this.....

  10. #10

    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    You could try this, get a wooden dowel rod, and a double ended lag bolt. It has threads on both ends and the hex part is in the middle, drill pilot hole in dowel, twist in. Then tap it through the bottom of the battery and twist in until you get a good grip on the battery. Then pull out.

    Probably use a pretty good sized bolt 3/8 " maybe.

    DaveH

  11. #11

    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    Next time, why don't you just send the whole flashlight to Duracell and they will send you a new one? I sent them a $250 cassette recorder wrecked by leaking batteries and they actually bought me an equivelent machine. I thought everybody knew about their warranty policy. Pretty nice of them!
    Chet

  12. #12
    Flashaholic* Unicorn's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    For a flashlight that is to be used for emergencies only, wny not get another lithium light? A Streamlight Scorpion, or a Surefire 6P or 9P would seem a better choice for a light that would sit around most of the time, and still work when needed. No worry about the batteries having died and leaked.

  13. #13
    Flashaholic
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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    Exactly why we have lithium cells!- seldom used, well constructed cells, and 10 yr. shelf life (they still have 90% after 10 years!)

    I did a comparison in lithium (L91BP - the new E2 lithium is the same cell) - versus alkaline in pagers - it costs less to use lithiums because while they cost slightly more, they last a substantially longer time - thus an overall cost savings. Not to mention labor cost in changing cells all the time.

    I also run E2 (L91BP) lithium in my photoflash - they have a high current capability and recharge the speedlight faster - which makes for more rapid photogrpahy. I use a digital camera with a frame buffer, so I can shoot while the camera stores prior images, making battery selection the limiting factor in speed (not the storage speed of the memory card)

    The L91 (E2 lithium) has a Voc of 1.73V versus 1.56V for alkaline (new, current issue cells) - This extra makes the infinity LED light have a bit of a boost, which is another good use for lithiums.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    Quote Originally Posted by K Horn View Post
    Personally before giving up, I'd first try pouring a can of Coke Classic in and let it set for....oh a half-hour. The "real thing" has a way of eating through corrosion (it's great on battery terminals). My next trick would be spraying some WD-40 and once again letting it sit. Last but not least a mixture of water and baking soda poured in.
    Hmmmmmm better living through chemicals.
    I think the Coke (an acid) is more likely to be of benefit than baking soda (alkaline) since the batteries are most likely already alkaline.

    I tried the WD40 on mine first, since I had already had to use it to open the flashlight, and left it more than an hour - no result. Next will be the "acid test", in my case a vinegar solution. No idea how strong to mix it though - I guess weak at first since I have no idea how resistant to acid the aluminium is going to be. Also since I now have thoroughly water-resistant-treated the thing, how well is the water-based acid going to penetrate? *sigh* why did I have to be so parsimonious about changing batteries...

  15. #15
    Enlightened
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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    when the batteries blew up in my 2 AA i tried to drill them out and use an easy out but it didnt work i ended up harvesting what i could off the flashlight and throwing the tube away

  16. #16
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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    Call the battery manufacturer. Several brands will offer a check for the damaged product and a new set of batteries after such an incident. Too bad if you used no-name-brand batteries.

    Above all, stop using alkalines.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    Throw it away and treat yourself to something decent,it is Noah,s Ark technology now and worth nowt.

    Modern day Alkaline are very good and very cost effective.
    Sent from my Mobile using my sticky fingers.

  18. #18
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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    Quote Originally Posted by LanthanumK View Post
    Call the battery manufacturer. Several brands will offer a check for the damaged product and a new set of batteries after such an incident. Too bad if you used no-name-brand batteries.

    Above all, stop using alkalines.
    Care to name them and/or qualify your information as i am a big user of Alkaline and many on here keep warning me that they leak which i think is bogey man stories,but just in case it does happen i will follow your advice.
    Sent from my Mobile using my sticky fingers.

  19. #19

    Nana Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    Quote Originally Posted by mcnair55 View Post
    Care to name them and/or qualify your information as i am a big user of Alkaline and many on here keep warning me that they leak which i think is bogey man stories,but just in case it does happen i will follow your advice.
    He said they were duracells.

    They are called alkaleaks for a reason. For those who have not had it happen, its like smoking for people who did not get cancer....its all just stories, and, of course FAR more people smoke and DON'T get cancer, than smoke and GET cancer...further reinforcing those who have not yet experienced an issue, to assume its all BS.



    Alkaleaks can leak, and cigs can cause cancer. Deal with it.


    Speaking of death, this thread died the first time in 2001.



  20. #20
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    +1 ^ quite an old thread

  21. #21
    Flashaholic* T45's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    This thread? There must be a half dozen threads on how to deal with leaking alkaline batteries. I am surprised they have not been all combined yet.
    Be a Light In the Universe

  22. #22
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    Default

    .
    .
    @Chris: it makes not much sense to revive a thread that is 13 years old

  23. #23
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    It makes sense if the information is still useful. I found it because I am presently looking for information on removing stuck alkaline D cells from a 3D Mag. Sure we have SureFire and others, but we keep a 3D Maglite (the handy bludgeon size) clipped to the wall at each side of our king size bed. Big and easy to find in the dark, they can be turned on while still in their clips, and make adequate sconce lights during power outages. Hers was manufactured LED, mine was converted.

    Removing the tail cap then dropping end first on the floor (rug-I don't want to hurt the floor) removed one Rayovac industrial cell, but the other two are still stuck. Maybe I will take it to work with me in the morning. I remember reclaiming my mid 1970's 3D Kel-lite from alkaline damage. It took a pipe wrench to remove the head, and I ordered new lens, reflector and bulb holder. Old memory...
    There are two kinds of light - the glow that illumines, and the glare that obscures. ~James Thurber

  24. #24

    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    Thanks ChrisBedford, I always enjoy a good bit of necromancy

  25. #25
    Flashaholic
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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    I saved a Maglite with corroded alkalines in it. Unfortunately, the batteries corroded the anodizing. The light still works, but the tube is rough and pitted. I'm not sure if there's anything that can be done about that... ideas? Paint, maybe?

  26. #26

    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    13 year old thread... this might be a record.

  27. #27

    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    This thread reminds me I still have an old 2AA incan maglite with corroded batteries in it. The batteries have started pouring out some kind of white powder into the tube. I'm not quite sure if it can still be repaired.

  28. #28

    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    you can always contact the battery manufacturer for payment of the cost of the light. sometimes they do this without needing the light back and additionally, they'll send coupons for a pack of batteries. i've done this with rayovac, energizer and duracell (not to mention a plethora of pen manufacturers)
    a single sunbeam is enough to drive away many shadows- St. Francis of Assissi

  29. #29
    Flashaholic
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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    Mag used to repair or replace any Mag flashlight damaged by alkaline batteries manufactured by Duracell, Energizer, or Ray-O-Vac. However, this warranty is no longer in effect, as it was canceled some time ago. I had a couple of Mini-Mags that had corroded and chose to just throw them away.

    Lithium AA and AAA are not only superior batteries but are actually a better bargain.

  30. #30

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    Default Re: How to salvage Maglite with corroded batteries?

    If the light has a sentimental value to you, you could get some muriatic or phosphoric acid, cut it with some water and wait till it dissolved to alkaline junk, then push out the battery shells. For the run of the mill light it isn't worth the time or effort.

    I gave my Dad a Led Lenser for Christmas and against my wishes he installed a Duracell battery, a couple of months later it leaked into the switch. Sent the light and battery to Duracell and two weeks later they enclosed a check and coupon for more of their product. Dad's a hard head so I made him make contact with Duracell on the replacement.

    I've got a Nikon Speedlight that has a set of Duracells that puked that Duracell is going to have to eat the cost of replacement. A nice $350 replacement cost.
    Now it's all Eneloops or NiMH cells in everything that can use them.

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