Mini Detector UV LED

Mini Detector UV LED, availability may be spotty and localised, $3 (
Manufactured by (Unknown) (
Last updated 02-25-02

The Mini Detector is yet another in a quickly growing line of mini LED penlights & keychain lights using the new high-powered deep violet LEDs. This light is of all-metal construction, and is powered by four tiny button cell batteries.


Well, they did alright on thost last two sentences anyway. :)
This is a fine example of what is known as "Engrish", that mangled Chinese or Japanese english that was poorly translated and not proofread before the product hit the states. Sometimes, reading the packaging on products like this is more exciting than actually using the product itself. :o

The Mini Detector comes ready to use. Just take it out of the package and push the button.

This light uses four AG-3 button cells. The light comes with four already installed, and a spare set in the package. Unscrew the tailcap, and tap out the dead batteries. They will go up a Stick Shark vaccum, but they'll break a regular vaccum cleaner, so you might just want to drop them in the garbage. :)

Because button cells tend to get stuck sideways inside these small barrel type flashlight bodies, the easiest way to install them is to stack four cells, button-side facing up, on a table, and lower the flashlight barrel over them. Slip a business card or similar underneath, flip the light over, and screw the tailpiece back on.

The Mini-Detector is a nice looking unit that appears to be made somewhat better overall than other inexpensive Chinese LED keychain & penlights. The body is chrome plated inside and out, so I cannot as of yet identify the base metal. It's probably brass, because it's non-magnetic.

The light comes with a colorful day-glow neck lanyard so it is always within easy reach; this also allows you to demonstrate the fluorescence to somebody simply by shining the unit at its own lanyard.

The LED appears to use Cree's new MegaBright UV LED chip, though I cannot determine who actually bought the chips and assembled them into the finished LED. Power output is decent, and is in the 9-12 milliwatt range, and the wavelength is estimated to be 397-399nm.

LEFT: Normal operation.
RIGHT: With lens removed.

In normal use, the beam consists of a small bright square with an odd circular corona & spoke-like artifacts, surrounded by a fainter outer ring. But if the lens is removed, you are provided with a more traditional medium width beam.

LEFT: Shining it at an object with glow-in-the-dark material on it.
RIGHT: Yup, the Mini Detector recharges this material quite nicely.

UPDATE: 00-00-00



        MANUFACTURER: Not specified
        PRODUCT TYPE: UV "Money Detector" light
        LAMP TYPE: LED, 5mm, ~398nm
        No. OF LAMPS: 1
        BEAM TYPE: Small square with corona and outer ring
        SWITCH TYPE: Momentary pushbutton
        BEZEL: Removeable, with magnifying lens
        BATTERY: 4 AG-3 button cells
        CURRENT CONSUMPTION: ~40mA when new
        ACCESSORIES: Two sets of batteries, neck lanyard
        WARRANTY: None specified

              PRODUCT RATING:

              DURABILITY: --
              BRIGHTNESS: --
              USEABILITY: --
              BATTERY LIFE: --
              BATTERY AVAILABILITY: --

              OVERALL SCORE: --


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