Intrinsically Safe Helmet Headlamp – Nightstick XPP-5462RX

Over the last few years I’ve been looking for a more suitable headlamp for my helmets.  The headlamps sold for hiking or other activities aren’t durable enough nor do they have the safety features I wanted.  I finally found a light that would meet all my needs.

The headlamp I chose is the Dicata Nightstick XPP-5462RX.  The light is designed to be worn on a firefighting helmet or hardhat.  It has a low profile so that it can be used with shield equipped helmets so that it won’t interfere with the shield.  I may want to change the light from my Phenix First Due helmet over to a firefighting helmet with a shield if the situation calls for it and not worry whether I’ll have an issue.

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From product instructions

It is intrinsically safe in various hazardous environments reducing the risk of a spark causing an explosion.  The intrinsically safe rating calls for the use of three Energizer AA batteries E91 or EN91 only.  According to the manual those are the only batteries it has been tested with.  The light also meets NFPA-1971-8.6(2013).  The light is waterproof down to 1 meter.  It also has a drop rating of 2 meters.

The headlamp is held onto the helmet by a heavy duty rubber strap.  The strap has two clips that hold the power cord in place.  It feels like it will last for several years if not damaged during use.  The battery pack and lamp housing are made from glass filled nylon polymer and appear the be very durable.  The company says it comes in two colors green which looks lime-yellow to me and red which looks very much orange on my helmet.

TILT

Lamp in tilted position

The lamp is connected to a stainless steel frame with an adjustable hinge.  The angle of the light can be changed if desired.  I found that setting the light to the most advantageous viewing angle then tightening the bolt/nut down so it won’t move works best for me.  Before I did this whenever I turned on the light it would move back to the original position so that I always had to readjust after changing the settings.

LIGHT ON

Light with spot turned on high power

The light uses Cree L.E.D.’s that are rated to a 50,000+ hour lifespan.  The spot light is on the users right with the flood on the left.  There is a separate control button for each light.  The control button sequence for both lights is first press high power, second push low power and third push light off.  Both lights can be on at the same time in the high or low power setting.

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The spot light in high power is 275 lumens with a run time of 6 hours 45 minutes reaching 120 meters.  Low power is 100 lumens with a run time of 25 hours reaching 75 meters.  The flood light in high power is 250 lumens with a run time of 7 hours.  In low power 100 lumens with a run time of 25 hours.  When the spot and flood lights operate simultaneously they put out 310 lumens with a run time of 6 hours reaching 86 meters.

REAR LIGHT

Rear facing green “follow me” light

The battery pack also has rear facing “follow me” light.  The green L.E.D. light is very bright and easy to see.  The control button on the housing allows the user to turn the light to steady on with the first push.  The second push will make the light flash at regular intervals and the third push will turn the light off.

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Replacement strap

In the future more of these headlamps will be added to the other helmets used for rescue activities.  I also plan on having spare straps on hand if we need them.  After using this light I’m very happy with the performance.  Check out the video if you want to see how the light works.  -13

Booster Bath Tub and Petsafe Ramp Product Experience & Modifications

Bathing dogs is a necessity.  That doggy pond water smell isn’t welcome here, it’s too much.  It’s always been a strain on my lower back bending over to give our dog a good scrubbing.  I looked at various tubs but didn’t like them for several reasons.  Some were at ground level requiring me to bend over, while elevated tubs were fully enclosed requiring me to lift the dog over the rim.  I did find a tub that had an opening that a dog could walk into.

The Booster Bath large elevated tub is configured so that steps could be attached at the opening.  It looks good but the steps didn’t look as if it would work very well.  There were 3 steps that would be difficult for a larger dog to navigate.  My dog would jump off them.  I decided to go with a ramp that I would modify to attach to the tub.

I like the tub itself but do not like the leg design.  The way the legs are designed they want to push out and away from the tub.  The tendon part of the leg wants to come out of the slots.  The first time I used the tub my dog jumped out just as one of the legs pulled out.  I replaced the leg then continued with bathing.  My dog wants to sit down in the middle of the tub.  This pushes down making the legs move outward as I’m scrubbing the dog.

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While the dog was sitting in the tub I looked at the underside and noticed a gap at the connection point.  I thought if I don’t support the tub the legs would pull out and the tub would collapse with the dog in it.  It first I wasn’t sure what might work then remembered I had a shower chair/bench in storage.  I took off the back and arm rest adjusted the height to fit.  It worked the chair fit perfectly without interference.

tub chair

Now when the dog is washed the tub is very stable.   Our dog is relaxed, calm and seems to enjoy the bath.  I’m not the only one who has had issue with the legs.  There are many customer reviews on Amazon reporting the same problems.

To get the dog into the tub I went with the Petsafe folding ramp.  I liked that it is lightweight, folding and fits into the tub when finished.  It had a semi flat area that would allow me to attach it to the tub with clevis pins.  Drill a few holes, push the pins in and done.

clevis pin

When I used the ramp the first time as the dog reached the hinge the tub began to tilt backward from the dogs weight.  I attached the front of the tub to the ground with a strap the had the dog walk up.  The ramp was very shaky as well as flexed as the dog passed over the hinge.  It looked like there was a lot of pressure being placed over the hinge portion.  To counteract the forces I put a concrete block and some wood under the hinge.  That eliminated the flexing and made the ramp much more stable.

I knew the block and wood was temporary.  It was a hassle that looked like an eyesore.  I looked at many options and didn’t like any of them.  One day while checking out a Harbor Freight mailing it dawned on me that 3 ton jack stands might work.  I purchased a pair and they fit perfectly without any adjustments.  All I did was all some nonslip matting.  Now that ramp is very sable.

jack stands

The other issue I was having getting the dog up the ramp was that she would jump off.  I couldn’t understand why.  I thought it might be how the darker colored ramp is perceived.  Maybe it looks like the slots in a cattle guard to her.  A shadow that she can’t see well or at all.  After adding some light color towels I was able to walk her up with no problems.

Seems like the ramp does have an issue near the hinge.  After my experience I went though every one of the one star reviews at Amazon.  I noticed a pattern where the ramp broke at the hinge.  After viewing several photographs from customers it was plain to see a consistent in the breaks.  The all looked nearly identical.  I think there is a flaw in the design or plastic.

My opinion of the tub and ramp is that if I wasn’t able to add the chair and jack stands I would not use them again for fear of them collapsing.  Anyone who has either of them currently may want to look into the solutions I’ve had success with.  Anyone considering purchasing them should also factor in the additional cost of the supports.  Since I’ve had success with the solutions I’ll keep using the ramp/tub combination with confidence.  The video has all the details.  -13

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ground anchor tent stake driver socket

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Living in Florida we’re prepared for living in tents for various reasons.  There’s camping for pleasure.  We may have to evacuate to another location for protection from a hurricane.  Most of the time we stay on the homestead when a hurricane is predicted to strike our area.  Our home could become so damaged that we may have to camp in the back yard until it is repaired.  We have soft soil, high winds and hard rain storms to content with.

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Failed tent stake experiment.

Setting up camp in sandy terrain requires the right stake.  If hard ground stakes are used they’ll pull out as soon as force is put on a tent or what ever structure needs to be anchored.  I had considered the MSR ToughStake but the cost was prohibitive since we need 35-40.  They wanted over $30.00 for two of the larger size stakes.  I tried to make something similar with what was sold as stakes that worked in the sand but it didn’t work.  If I used them they would have to be buried.  That’s more than I want to do when pitching or rolling up camp.

GROUND ANCHOR

Preferred sand stake, 3/8″ x 15″ ground anchor

I ended up getting 3/8″ x 15″ auger type ground anchors that screw into the sand.  This size is perfect for setting up the average camping tent.  I’ve used larger ones in the past to hold down sheds and temporary tarp structures.  They worked very good.  The only issue is getting them into the ground or removing them.  After watching a video on YouTube I decided to try to modify a couple of impact sockets.

BOTH SOCKETS

32mm & 27mm 1/2″ drive deep impact sockets

I wasn’t sure how the experiment was going to go so I used 20% off coupons to buy the sockets from Harbor Freight.  I decided on impact sockets that way they could be used with any manual, pneumatic, cordless or electric driver available.  First was the 32mm to see if I could do it then the 27mm.  I thought the 27 mm might work as well or better plus I’d have a back up in case one or the other was lost or damaged.

 

I used a cutting and grinding wheel on an angle grinder to remove the material creating enough space for the ground anchor eyelet to fit though.  The grinding work isn’t pretty but it works.  Now we have two sockets that will drive those ground anchors into the sand.  I ordered the ground anchors from a couple of suppliers and they each had different size eyelets.  The drivers accommodate both sizes.  Really glad that video was on YouTube.  Pitching and rolling up camp will be much easier now.

32 WITH ANCHOR

Video link is below if you want to see the how it turned out.  -13