Updated 07-18-08: Crenshaw just added his review of a different ML1. Thanks Crenshaw
I just got my new MilkySpit modded SureFire L1 LumaMax (aka Milky ML1). I was in awe with the way this light had turned out and I felt compelled to share it with you guys. Enjoy!
Although SureFire L1 Lumamax is not the brightest flashlight out there, I always liked it. The overall size, weight, two-stage lock-out tailcap, and my overall weakness for SureFire E series style lights are to blame for. The SF L1 is not a new light, and many already know the specs (probably by heart), but here it is anyway:
What I Didn't Like About SureFire L1 LumaMax
- Output: 65 Lumens High / 10 Lumens Low
- Runtime: 1.5 Hours High / 16 Hours Low
- Length and Weight: 4.52", 2.9 oz
Although I love the SureFire E series style flashlights, I am not too fond of the narrow beam pattern from Total Internal Reflection (TIR) optics. In addition, the relatively low lumens output, beam artifact, slightly greenish tint, and its inability to run on rechargable batteries are turn offs for me as well. Of course, all this is based on my jaded perception from the dangerous exposure to CPF. I'm sure I would have been more than happy with the SF L1 if I hadn't discovered this forum.
I sent MilkySpit (Scott) a PM and discussed how I can improve my SF L1. Although Scott's a busy man, he was courteous in exchanging PMs with me for a few days. Finally, I decided that I wanted the following:
Now Presenting .... the New Milky ML1
- Replace the stocked CREE Led to Seoul SSC P4 USWOH
- Replace the stocked TIR optic to UCL window
- Add IMS20 Smooth Reflector - Scott calls it his "smoothie"
- Change the stocked driver to a high-output buck/boost MadMax+ driver
- Bore out the battery tube to fit rechargable RCR123a battery
- Calibrate the tailcap to keep the low at around 10-15 lumens
I sent out my SF L1 to Scott on Monday afternoon (6/16), Scott received it on Tuesday, called me on Tuesday night to discuss what he had done to my light, shipped it out on Wednesday morning, and I got it today (6/19)!!! Knowing that Scott has a lot of mods to work on, I didn't expect to see my SF L1 for at least a month .
After Scott worked his magic, my SF ML1 has became one of my favorite lights. Here's the new ML1:
Okay, enough talk, let's see some photos. I do apologize that my photography skills is not that great. I blame on my digital camera.
- Runs on both primary 3.0v CR123a and 3.7v RCR123a
- Max output is approxiamtely 200 lumens on RCR123a (about 40 minutes), and 165 lumens on CR123a (about 1 hour)
- Low output is approximately 15 lumens on RCR123a, and 8-10 lumens on CR123a (about 20 hours).
- A very nice white and flawless beam pattern with bright hotspot with very useable spill. Among all the lights I have, my McGizmo Lunasol 20, McLux-Ti-XR19-PD, and Novatac 120P have the nicest beam pattern. The ML1 has equally nice beam but has the widest and brightest hotspot and spill.
My SF ML1 - Scott is not going to be happy, but after taking this photo, I rip the label off. According to our fellow CPF member ttran97, he said ripping Scott's label off is like ripping the whoosh symbol from your Nike sneaker
A Look at the Head - Bad photo, but I'm trying to show the reflector and SSC P4. You get the point
Low Output - About 10ft Away - Running on a freshly charged AW 3.7v Protected RCR123a
High Output - About 10ft Away - Running on a freshly charged AW 3.7v Protected RCR123a
A Failed Attempt to Show the High Output Beam - Note, the beam pattern is flawless. Any artifact that may be depicted on the photo is due to the uncooperating camera. . Okay okay, the photographer sucked.
Overall, I cannot be more pleased with the result. This light will serve me for many years to come ... I might have lost my incentive to get any more 1xCR123a lights.
My ML1 will not be a shelf queen. Instead, it will be part of my EDC rotation, and number one choice for my future backpacking excursions. I will post more photos when I take this light outdoors.
Feel free to drop me a PM if you have any questions. If you want to get your light modded, drop MilkySpit a line.
Some of Milky Threads