7-LED 385nm UV Flashlight, retail $21 (URL not known)
Manufactured by (That's unknown too)
Last updated 09-25-10

This is a UV LED flashlight, using seven 385nm UVA LEDs to produce its light, and three AA cells to power it.

The casing is made of aluminum with a matte silvery finish to it. I don't believe this finish has any type of anodizing on it, but I could be wrong here.


Make sure there are batteries installed in the flashlight first (see below).

For momentary operation, press the button on the barrel about halfway in, and hold it that way for as long as you need light. Release the button to extinguish your flashlight.

For continuous operation, press the button more firmly and then release it. The light should come on and stay on. Press it the same way again to turn the light off.

To change the batteries in this flashlight, unscrew the tailcap, and set it aside. Dump the three used AA cells out of the barrel, and dispose of or recycle them as you see fit. Insert three new AA cells into the barrel, button-end (+) positive first. Screw the tailcap back on, and be done with it.

Measures 171mA on three Kodak alkaline AA cells, using my DMM's 2A scale.
This equates to 24.43mA per LED.

The photograph above shows the business end of the flashlight; seven LEDs should be visible.

This flashlight is reasonably durable, but could become broken if violently thrown against a hard surface, stepped on with hard-soled shoes, or run over with a motor vehicle.

It is splash resistant, and maybe weather resistant, but it is not waterproof or submersible. I removed the tailcap, relieved the light of batteries, and suctioned it; and some air got in. So please try to keep it away from creeks, rivers, ponds, lakes, puddles of donkey pee, snowbanks, water-filled ditches, sinks, tubs, toilets, fishtanks, dog water dishes, or other places where water or water-like liquids might be found. If you know or suspect it got dredged, take the tailcap and bezel off, relieve it of its batteries, and set it in a warm, dry place for a day or so, and you ought to be in good shape.
If it fell in seawater or if something peed on it, douche all the parts in fresh water before setting them out to dry.
It should be OK to use in rain or snow, but I cannot verify this firsthand.

This light isn't meant to be used like an ordinary flashlight; its intended use is activating fluorescent materials like the security strips in US paper currency, security markings on some types of postage stamps, security markings on event tickets, some types of scorpions indigenous to the southwestern United States, defects or repairs made to antique glass articles, and similar.

The UVA output of 385nm is shorter in wavelength than what is normally found in "money checkers" or other UV flashlights, so its output will appear dimmer to the eye. But don't let that sickly, weak purple glow fool you. Please do not shine it in your eyes, other people's eyes, or pet's eyes. This light emits copious amounts of UVA radiation, and that isn't very good for the eyes if stared directly into.

The LED bodies themselves glow dimly with a bluish violet color. I don't know if this is accidental fluorescence or purposeful fluorescence; and I do not know who makes the LEDs either. These LEDs have a dual-bond construction, so I know right away they aren't Cree parts. Whoever makes 385nm LEDs with a dual-bond construction with the die wires attaching at each end of the die (light emitting chip) inside each LED is responsible for these. Could be Uniroyal or Toyoda Gosei.

These LEDs typically have short device halflives; one tester reports getting under 200 hours to half-intensity at normal drive currents (20mA typical) for NUV LEDs in epoxy bodies, like these.

Beam photo at ~12".

The beam is not that magenta color like you see in this
photograph; it is a very dim, dull deep purple in real life.

Wavelength is too short for me to take any measurements.

The security strip in a US $20 bill glowing under this light's beam.
The strip itself glows well; the rest of the bill illuminates only dimly.

Spectrographic plot
Spectrographic analysis of the LEDs in this flashlight.

Spectrographic plot
Spectrographic analysis of the LEDs in this flashlight; spectrometer's response range narrowed to a band between 350nm and 420nm to help pinpoint peak wavelength; which appears to be ~383.80nm.

USB2000 spectrometer graciously donated by P.L.

ProMetric analysis
Beam cross-sectional analysis.
Image made using the ProMetric System by Radiant Imaging.

Test unit was purchased on Ebay and was received on 04-12-04. The exact page I got it from is right here. This page will expire after 06-25-04, so use the Seller's Other Items page to see if he's selling any more of these flashlights.

UPDATE: 00-00-00



    PRODUCT TYPE: Handheld UV flashlight
    LAMP TYPE: 5mm 385nm UVA LEDs
    No. OF LAMPS: 7
    BEAM TYPE: Narrow flood with very dim corona
    SWITCH TYPE: Pushbutton on/off/momentary on barrel
    BEZEL: Metal; LEDs protected behind plastic window
    BATTERY: 3x AA cells
    WATER RESISTANT: Splash-resistant at minimum
    WARRANTY: Unknown


    Star Rating

7-LED 385nm UV Flashlight * (Manufacturer not known)

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