Reviewer's Note: The QuickTreX Flashlight PAL was provided for review by QuickTreX.
Manufacturer's specifications, condensed from QuickTreX website:
- Compatibility: The Flashlight PAL was designed mainly for LED Flashlights ranging from: Range of Thickness from 0.75" (19mm) to 1.5" (38mm), and a Length from 4" (101 mm) to 9" (229mm) or more.
- MSRP ~$20
This will be a different sort of review for me – no beamshots, runtimes or throw/output measures here!
QuickTreX has sent me their new general-purpose flashlight holster to evaluate. As you can see from the dimensions, it is most ideally suited for the standard 2xAA flashlight form factor. In fact, here it is with a Fenix L2D installed:
What differentiates this third-party holster from bundled ones is the design and build quality. To start, here is how it compares to the classic Fenix L2D holster, newer LD20 holster, and a typical Eagletac offering (P20A2).
Even at a glance, you can see the PAL has a few nice advantages over the bundled solutions. I’ve always been a fan of the minimalist early Fenix holster (the elastic side version, not the modern cheaper all-fabric one). First off, note that the PAL has velcroed closing flaps at both ends of the tube opening.
This allows you to insert larger than typical length lights. It also lets you protect the tailcap end somewhat, while still providing access to a clicky switch while holstered (i.e. open the bottom Velcro flap).
The fairly wide elastic sides also accommodate somewhat thicker lights than typical, but holds even the slim Fenix L2D firmly. To give you an extreme example, here it is comfortably sheathing the Jetbeam M1X searchlight:
While perhaps not the ideal way to carry that light, it is a serviceable solution (i.e. even though the M1X is top-heavy for bezel-up carry, the holster pulled it off well). I would note that the fabric and elastic components seem of good quality, with solid-looking stitching.
The belt clip is also a higher quality solution than typical. The plastic is solid and holds securely. The clip swivels left or right, with three firm and noticeable detents on either side of straight down, up to 90 degrees (i.e. 180 degrees in total, with 7 detents). This is useful if you want to use a light hands-free on your person. You can clip the light on the side of your belt (or collar, or hat, etc.) and shine it at what you are looking at. Depending on the weight of the light in question, I found this worked reasonably well.
As QuickTreX points out, you could also clip it to a tool to make a stable surface-mounted light source. Here’s a close-up of the back of the packaging, giving you various ideas for mounting.
A few minor constructive criticisms. Personally, I’m not sure if the light-toned top Velcro flap is really a necessity - although you could easily tuck it out of the way inside the main portion of the holster. And of course, you could always undo the stitching to remove it permanently. I’d also prefer a less prominent manufacturer label on the body.
At the end of the day, I found this to be a serviceable replacement holster for a standard 2xAA light – and maybe a few others with slim battery tubes. The ability to easily use the light while holstered - and quickly remove the whole assembly and position externally - are nice features. It seems sturdy and well-made.