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I may be a flashlight addict. Please share your story. Login/Join 
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Picture of P-220
posted
The first step is to admit you have a problem.

I am not there yet, but well on my way.

My fascination with flashlights began at an early age. For those who remember Radio Shack (in the 70’s), they use to give away gray, D cell, plastic flashlights, so you would buy the batteries from them. They also had a free battery card, where you could get one free battery each month.

Then came Mag-light. What a game changer. Now you had not only a light, but also a handy impact weapon. How much better could it get? From 2 cells to 5 cells. These were beasts.

*Mag-light. Shame on you Mag-light. You owned the flashlight market for years and were very late to the LED technology. For decades, everyone recognized and loved your brand. I am not sure why it took so long for you to embrace new technology, but your failure to do so, cost you dearly, IMO.

Then I bought a Brinkman, that you could convert from a 2 cell to a 5 cell, with an extender. Again, an all metal, D cell flashlight, that could operate on 2,3, or 5 cells. Revolutionary.

Probably 20-25 years ago, maybe longer (certainly pre-internet) I was reading all the gun rags, I came across (I believe Tac Star was the name) a small incandescent light that operated off of 3 AAAA batteries. Yes AAAA. Hell, I did not know there was such an animal (AAAA batteries). Neat small light and what I recall, was kind of the first so-called tactical light. Small and bright for its size. I received one of these from my parents for Christmas. Enablers I tell ya! This light worked for a while, but eventually failed and I could not find replacement bulbs. I still have it, but cannot find it at the moment.

The Surefire 6P and 9P. Folks, we have arrived. A small light, that was brighter than anything I was use to. Expensive, but hey, probably the last light I’ll ever need. The problem I encountered with these was, when I dropped them, I broke the bulb. Bulbs were kind of expensive. But hey, it was the shit, and I had to have them.

The LED revolution. No one offered exactly what I wanted, so I built my own. I bought a Surefire Outdoorsman body. I preferred the Outdoorsman body, because of the longer pocket clip. I bought a Z-57 tailcap and a KL-1 Head. Holy smokes. I had created the best light of my life. I think the KL-1 head was rated a blistering 17 lumens.

The Surefire delivered the L4. The original L4 I believe was rated at 100 Lumens. Much better than my 17 Lumen creation, but I still preferred the longer pocket clip of the Outdoorsman body. Ok, so I own both, so what?. The L4 is the only light I ever had a problem with. Mine developed a greenish hue/tint. I contacted Surefire and they replaced the L4, no questions asked. The new one (still rated at 100 Lumens) was a bright white light.

Then one of the members here at SIGforum posted a Fenix P1 with a Luxeon LED. I think it was listed for $30 or $40. Rated at 50 or so Lumens. Slightly larger than the 123 cell that it used. I could not believe what I was seeing. A small light I could carry everywhere without anyone knowing. This was da’ bomb. Hell, this is probably the last light I’ll ever need.

Well, hold the phone, Fenix introduces the P1D CE rated at 135 Lumens (I believe). A little larger than the P1, but hell, it offered over double the Lumens. All kidding aside, I still have and sometimes carry the P1D CE. I still feel that for the money, it represents one of the better lights I have purchased. The P1D CE also offered variable light settings. I found this to be one of the best features ever. During a 4 day 3 night power outage, I decided it was time to drain the water heater, because it was 36 degrees in the house. I took my L4 into the furnace room where the water heater was located and got down on my knees, to read the instructions on draining the water heater. I had my Surefire L4 with me and when I turned it on (inches from the water heater, I blinded myself with the reflection of the light off of the water heater. When I found the P1D CE, I knew I had a truly versatile light. While the P1D CE was/is a great light, it was a twisty and not a clicky. Not very tacticool. As I have aged, I have learned I am not tactical/tacticool, and I am good with that. I just need shit that works.

Move over Luxeon, there is a new feller in town, by the name of CREE. LED game changer right there!!!

In between all of these came a 2 cell (123’s) Inova, Mini Mag-lights, Four Sevens, a Streamlight, a Nitcore I bought for my Son. The thing I dug about the Nitcore, was that it used a AA battery and the switch was designed to eliminate the potential of any explosion, should you find yourself in a hostile environment or one filled with combustible fumes. Yeah, I bought into that hype. C’mon, I am a sales guy, not an Operator. ☺ I still like this Nitcore, it is a handy little light that can be made brighter or dimmer, simply by holding in the switch.

I have owned 2 Powertac lights, an E1 and an E5, both excellent lights. My Son has the E1 at school. Another single cell (123) that is a really great light.

Then a Surefire L1, cool little light and hey, it’s a Surefire.

Then a pocket light with a clip that operated on AA batteries

Then the Fenix PD 30, PD 32 and PD 35. I believe I owned a couple of the PD 30’s, at least 2 in black and one silver finish. I owned 2 PD-32’s and 2 Pd35’s. IIRC, there were a couple of iterations of the PD30, with different lumen ratings.

Then the Fenix TK 40. Not an EDC light, but shit, this ran off of 8 AA batteries and was a BEAST. Nothing like a handheld spotlight (well, by standards back then anyway). I had this light for a few years and it went on extended vacations. I really liked the AA feature, as AA batteries are available almost anywhere on Planet Earth.

I was a long time Surfire fan who drank the Fenix Koolaid. I was disappointed that Surefire did not offer variable levels of output until later in the game. Fenix offered many more features, IMO and cost considerably less. The Fenix lights may not survive a nuclear explosion like the Surefires, but I will have other problems if I encounter a nuclear explosion.

*Much like my comments about Mag-light, I think Surefire was late to the game, with regards to offering lights with different levels of output. Perhaps they were not comfortable with the technology and did not want to jump in, until they were comfortable putting their name on it.

Surefire Titan Plus. I had migrated away from Surefire, more so due to expense than anything else. Thanksgiving 2015, A fellow member of SIGforum, shares a post that Surefire is having a 50% off sale. Really? Why? Oh well, it was Black Friday weekend, let’s take a look. Well, I found the Titatn Plus on sale for $50.00 or so. Do I really need it?.................................Yes, for $50.00, I need it. I place my order and receive confirmation that it is back ordered. Well, some of you may remember, that was a great snafu on the part of someone who was handling a Surefire promotion. There were a dozen items or so that were suppose to be 50% off, not the whole damn lineup. Apparently there were people (not SIGforum Members) who were maxing out their credit cards, realizing there may have been a mistake at Surefire. Surefire honored some purchases and voided others. I was grateful my order was honored. Would I have spent $100.00 on a Titan Plus? Probably not, but $50.00, hell yes. The Titan Plus operates off of a AAA battery and offers up to 300 lumens. It has replaced my P1D CE as my primary EDC.

Batteries. When I bought the Titan Plus, there was some word that you needed a rechargeable battery to get the most out of the Titan Plus. So.................I had to buy rechargeable batteries and a charger.

Good God, now the whole rechargeable battery thing has opened up a new can of worms, one which is again costing money. Would I ever spend $32.00 for a battery? Hell no!.............................well wait……….maybe..................well, yes!

The Fenix LD75C. I know you have heard this before, but damn!!! A handheld spotlight with so many features, I’ll probably never use. However, during a recent power outage, the LD75C was able to light up the inside of our home. I placed it on the dining room table and it looked like it was day-time in the Living room, dining room, family room and part of the kitchen. This too reaches its greatest potential when using rechargeable batteries

What do I use today? My EDC rotation includes the Surefire Titan Plus and the Fenix P1D CE. When I am on-call, I carry the Titan Plus and a Fenix PD35.

I hate to think of the money I have spent on flashlights, batteries and chargers. Dare I say thousands of dollars.

What is the best light? Much like firearms..................., the one you have, when you need it. I am not convinced there is one "best light", they all have different purposes. There is not one I have, that I would not recommend.

When you look at the evolution of the LED's, advanced circuitry, lenses, etc....There have been significant advances in the past 10/15 years. I cannot help but wonder what my next purchase will be?

So there you have it, I may be on my way to an addiction, but thankfully it is a legal addiction.


Niech Zyje P-220

Steve
 
Posts: 34180 | Location: 45174 | Registered: December 09, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Now Serving 7.62
Picture of 10X-Shooter
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I feel your pain. I liked my first Surefire Titan Plus so much I bought a second. I liked my Surefire E1D so much I bought another. Thank the good lord they don't sell knives anymore because they were adding up also.
 
Posts: 4622 | Location: Southeast Tennessee | Registered: February 12, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of cjevans
posted Hide Post
I like the Fenix range, too many sit in a box in a drawer; when I remember, I'm usually giving the outdated (well for me) to friends.

So much that I'm incessantly watching for the next generations - and the step up in lumens and battery requirements/consumption.

Mind you, I still EDC an LD09 - and this thread has got the itch again.

On the other hand, a Nitecore P20 and a Surefire M300c are the WML.



We are all born ignorant, but one must work hard to remain stupid." ~ Benjamin Franklin.
 
Posts: 1028 | Location: Walkabout Creek | Registered: February 20, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Victim of Life's
Circumstances
Picture of doublesharp
posted Hide Post
I like em. I buy Menards/Aldi deals on led lights regular for just in case and then carry a Fenix E12 in my wallet front pocket and have a Fenix E01 on my key ring. I'd go nuts w/out the E12. Bet I use it a dozen times a day and seems like that AA battery lasts for months.


------------------------------------------

Money will buy you a fine dog but it takes love to make that dog wag its tail.
 
Posts: 2438 | Location: Sunnyside of Louisville | Registered: July 04, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Slayer of Agapanthus


posted Hide Post
Flashlights no, calculators... almost.

This is good to learn about.


"It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye". The Little Prince, Antoine de Saint-Exupery, pilot and author, lost on mission, July 1944, Med Theatre.
 
Posts: 3952 | Location: Central Texas | Registered: September 14, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Delusions of Adequacy
Picture of zoom6zoom
posted Hide Post
Have you seen the light, my son?




I have my own style of humor. I call it Snarkasm.
 
Posts: 16210 | Location: Virginia | Registered: June 02, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Oh stewardess,
I speak jive.
Picture of 46and2
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by mr kablammo:
Flashlights no, calculators... almost.

This is good to learn about.

Whatever you do, don't go browse the toys shown online and discussed at Candlepower...

It's almost as bad as browsing Watch forums.
 
Posts: 21704 | Registered: March 12, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
No double standards
posted Hide Post
I refuse to open any thread on flashlights, as it will inevitably cost me money. Smile




"Liberty lies in the hearts of men and women. When it dies there, no constitution, no law, no court can save it....While it lies there, it needs no constitution, no law, no court to save it"
- Judge Learned Hand, May 1944
 
Posts: 28250 | Location: CA | Registered: November 11, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
posted Hide Post
I am so addicted I have to sell off a few a couple of times a year so I have room for more.
And I have a ...... Surefire 3P!


End of Earth: 2 Miles
Upper Peninsula: 4 Miles
 
Posts: 5585 | Location: Marquette MI | Registered: July 08, 2014Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Plowing straight ahead come what may
Picture of Bisleyblackhawk
posted Hide Post
Fenix LD12 for my good carry one...three of four of those Husky brand Home Depot cree flash lights (they are really good and tough three function lights for cheap...I think the double light pack was $10 last Christmas), a bunch of AA and AAA mini maglights, a yellow Ray-O-Vac 2 D cell plastic I used for 15-16 years when I worked for the railroad (beat all to shit but still works like new Smile), I can't go to Walmart without buying two or three of those brightly colored LED flashlights for a buck each (there are probably a dozen or so in the vehicles, gun bags, work shop...anywhere a cheap semi-desposable flash light would come in handy...

I would venture to guess I have two or three dozen (or more) working flashlights in different sizes and quality scattered around...yes, I'm a flashlight junkie and I have no plan to control it.


********************************************************

"we've gotta roll with the punches, learn to play all of our hunches
Making the best of what ever comes our way
Forget that blind ambition and learn to trust your intuition
Plowing straight ahead come what may
And theres a cowboy in the jungle"
Jimmy Buffet
 
Posts: 7355 | Location: Southeast Tennessee...not far above my homestate Georgia | Registered: March 10, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Hoping for better pharmaceuticals
Picture of AZSigs
posted Hide Post
Flashlight addictions reminded me of this episode of COPS. Look at 20:42 of the video for an officer's explanation on flashlight collections and meth.
I am not inferring anyone here on the forum has any drug problems however.




Getting shot is no achievement. Hitting your enemy is.
 
Posts: 7995 | Location: Phoenix, Arizona | Registered: April 02, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Just for the
hell of it
Picture of comet24
posted Hide Post
I've owned many flashlights over the years. Just bought a LED bulb for my Maglight. No real reason to since I have many newer modern LED lights that are smaller and more powerful. The Maglight just holds a special place for me.

My going overboard really comes in when I look at dive lights. That can really get out of control when you get into tec diving. Current main dive light is a Light Monkey 21 watt LED canister light. I know there are a few people here that will understand.

That replaced my POS Diverite canister LED. That thing sucked. Failed me more then once. Nothing more fun then a primary light shitting itself inside a wreck over 100' down. Fun times.

Lets not even get started on the older OMS backup lights I've had over the years that have all failed.


_____________________________________

Because in the end, you won’t remember the time you spent working in the office or mowing your lawn. Climb that goddamn mountain. Jack Kerouac
 
Posts: 14094 | Registered: March 27, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Ammoholic
Picture of Skins2881
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by comet24:
I've owned many flashlights over the years. Just bought a LED bulb for my Maglight. No real reason to since I have many newer modern LED lights that are smaller and more powerful. The Maglight just holds a special place for me.

My going overboard really comes in when I look at dive lights. That can really get out of control when you get into tec diving. Current main dive light is a Light Monkey 21 watt LED canister light. I know there are a few people here that will understand.

That replaced my POS Diverite canister LED. That thing sucked. Failed me more then once. Nothing more fun then a primary light shitting itself inside a wreck over 100' down. Fun times.

Lets not even get started on the older OMS backup lights I've had over the years that have all failed.


I know the Maglite conversions don't hold a candle (intended) to the newer LEDs but I wish I hadn't tossed my Maglite, I'd buy a conversion for it. Just because that's what I had for ever. The convenience of the newer ones are great. I carry a old PD32 with me it's been old faithful to me. Only ever needed one repair which was totally free years after purchase and 100% my fault which I admitted to them.

I love my old PD32, until it dies it will be my EDC. I had a newer one, which I gave to a buddy. I have the PD35 which is excellent too. The only other one I have which is another old one is a 4-7's Maelstrom. That one died on me, I sent it back and they sent me an entire new flashlight with latest LED except my original tail cap, even a new body. They are also a great company.

I've bought so many Fenix lights over the years. Only five or six for myself, but probably 20 for friends and family. I am a strong believer in their product. The abuse I put my PD32 through and it lives amazes me, it's a freaking tank (light weight and easy to carry tank).



Jesse

A couple SIGs and a few others
 
Posts: 10027 | Location: Loudoun County, Virginia | Registered: December 27, 2014Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Just for the
hell of it
Picture of comet24
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by Skins2881:
quote:
Originally posted by comet24:
I've owned many flashlights over the years. Just bought a LED bulb for my Maglight. No real reason to since I have many newer modern LED lights that are smaller and more powerful. The Maglight just holds a special place for me.

My going overboard really comes in when I look at dive lights. That can really get out of control when you get into tec diving. Current main dive light is a Light Monkey 21 watt LED canister light. I know there are a few people here that will understand.

That replaced my POS Diverite canister LED. That thing sucked. Failed me more then once. Nothing more fun then a primary light shitting itself inside a wreck over 100' down. Fun times.

Lets not even get started on the older OMS backup lights I've had over the years that have all failed.


I know the Maglite conversions don't hold a candle (intended) to the newer LEDs but I wish I hadn't tossed my Maglite, I'd buy a conversion for it. Just because that's what I had for ever. The convenience of the newer ones are great. I carry a old PD32 with me it's been old faithful to me. Only ever needed one repair which was totally free years after purchase and 100% my fault which I admitted to them.

I love my old PD32, until it dies it will be my EDC. I had a newer one, which I gave to a buddy. I have the PD35 which is excellent too. The only other one I have which is another old one is a 4-7's Maelstrom. That one died on me, I sent it back and they sent me an entire new flashlight with latest LED except my original tail cap, even a new body. They are also a great company.

I've bought so many Fenix lights over the years. Only five or six for myself, but probably 20 for friends and family. I am a strong believer in their product. The abuse I put my PD32 through and it lives amazes me, it's a freaking tank (light weight and easy to carry tank).


I fell the same way. The Maglight even with LED doesn't some close to what a Finix that will fit in my pocket will do. With that said there is something about a light that will second as a baseball bat that todays lights can't do. Still not sure what I will do with it but glad I saved it.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: comet24,


_____________________________________

Because in the end, you won’t remember the time you spent working in the office or mowing your lawn. Climb that goddamn mountain. Jack Kerouac
 
Posts: 14094 | Registered: March 27, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I have upgraded 2 of 3 mini-mag lights to led. I've had them all since the mid 1980's. Pretty sure they will go another 40+ years and out last me.

I have a surefire G2 on my night stand. I think the cost was $35 and I've changed the battery twice. Love it.

I had a Fenix E11. Loved it. Wore it on a key chain till the little hole started to wear, was able to put a key ring through both. It lasted great from them on, wonderful EDC / key chain light. Unfortunately a battery leaked in it and it was DOA. I would love to get another one. I gave 3-4 of them for presents.

Replaced the E11 with an E12. Hoped it would be a perfect replacement. Ugh! 3 light levels that you have to click through. I want 1 light level full power and I want it now! The size is fine for my key chain and pocket. Unfortunately the E12's 2 holes on the back are the wrong size for a key ring. So some dremel time, still no go. so 2 zip ties hold it on my key ring now. Occasionally they hit the end cap and turn it on in my pocket. IMO it is not a good replacement for the E11.

Still looking for an E11 replacement. I'd just use the Surefire G2, it is just bigger than I would like for EDC / keychain light.


__________________________
My door is always open to Sigforum members, and I'm always willing to help if I can.

Must try to post in the actual gun forums.
 
Posts: 816 | Location: portland, OR | Registered: October 29, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Good enough is neither
good, nor enough
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by SOTAR:
I have upgraded 2 of 3 mini-mag lights to led. I've had them all since the mid 1980's. Pretty sure they will go another 40+ years and out last me.

I have a surefire G2 on my night stand. I think the cost was $35 and I've changed the battery twice. Love it.

I had a Fenix E11. Loved it. Wore it on a key chain till the little hole started to wear, was able to put a key ring through both. It lasted great from them on, wonderful EDC / key chain light. Unfortunately a battery leaked in it and it was DOA. I would love to get another one. I gave 3-4 of them for presents.

Replaced the E11 with an E12. Hoped it would be a perfect replacement. Ugh! 3 light levels that you have to click through. I want 1 light level full power and I want it now! The size is fine for my key chain and pocket. Unfortunately the E12's 2 holes on the back are the wrong size for a key ring. So some dremel time, still no go. so 2 zip ties hold it on my key ring now. Occasionally they hit the end cap and turn it on in my pocket. IMO it is not a good replacement for the E11.

Still looking for an E11 replacement. I'd just use the Surefire G2, it is just bigger than I would like for EDC / keychain light.


I love the e12. Just takes a bit of getting used to.



There are 3 kinds of people, those that understand numbers and those that don't.
 
Posts: 1213 | Location: Kansas City  | Registered: November 28, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
It's not easy being me
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by Scoutmaster:
I refuse to open any thread on flashlights, as it will inevitably cost me money. Smile


You, sir, are a better man than I. I applaud you for your restraint in choosing not to open this thread!! Wink Razz

Now I, on the other hand, have flashlight issues. So much so, that I've had a couple people tell me that they've read about my "issues" with flashlights.
Allow me to elaborate. My wife (among other accomplishments, such as raising six children) is considered a respected author in the Catholic publishing world. She has been published by a number of mainstream Catholic publishers, including (but not limited to) Ave Maria Press, Servant Publications, & Franciscan Media.
I have made it a habit in our 31+ years of marriage to avoid reading what she writes. As an aside, we'e also worked together running a bookstore//church supply business for over 30 years.

According to a few friends who have read a specific book by my wife, we apparently have flashlights scattered//placed//hidden throughout our house. Geez, I'm sorry. For some reason, if the power goes out (as it does more often than I'd like), I'd like to be able to easily move about our multi-level home.
I keep a Fenix PD-32 in my backpack as a back-up at all times.
And, my favorite brands are Fenix and Streamlight...
But I'm always open to suggestions...not that I care.


_______________________________________
Flammable, Inflammable, or Nonflammable.......
Hell, either it Flams or it doesn't!! (George Carlin)
 
Posts: 1999 | Location: Middle TN | Registered: March 22, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Ammoholic
Picture of Skins2881
posted Hide Post
quote:
You, sir, are a better man than I. I applaud you for your restraint in choosing not to open this thread!!


Big Grin Big Grin



Jesse

A couple SIGs and a few others
 
Posts: 10027 | Location: Loudoun County, Virginia | Registered: December 27, 2014Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of jack32586
posted Hide Post
I almost brought a plane down with my obsession of these nifty little lumen cannons. I had to have the best light with me at all times, and early in my career that was the Surefire M6 Gaurdian. I didn't need it on the flight, so I threw it in a backpack and checked it. When I retrieved the pack at baggage there was a perfect 3 inch hole burned through. No idea what else may have been "torched"but it was an uneventful flight. No hairspray or lighters involved I guess. The light was still on, batteries dead. I would assume luggage holds can handle the odd fire and or explosion, but it scared me plenty.
That bad boy was a 500 lumen incandesent egg fryer. I still have it, but wouldn't waste 6 CR123s for 20 min of 500 lumens anymore. Oh, and it cost almost $500 bucks. I have a stack of Surefire, Fenix, Olights and Streamlight weapon and handheld babies.

Getting twitchy thinking about the Fenix RC40...REAL twitchy
 
Posts: 112 | Location: Northern CA  | Registered: October 10, 2016Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Armed and Gregarious
Picture of DMF
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by Scoutmaster:
I refuse to open any thread on flashlights, as it will inevitably cost me money. Smile
Do you see the irony in this post? Wink


___________________________________________
"He was never hindered by any dogma, except the Constitution." - Ty Ross speaking of his grandfather General Barry Goldwater

"War is the remedy that our enemies have chosen, and I say let us give them all they want." - William Tecumseh Sherman
 
Posts: 11888 | Location: Nomad | Registered: January 10, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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