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Thread: Muyshondt Flieger Review

  1. #1

    Default Muyshondt Flieger Review

    A few weeks ago, I was offered the chance to evaluate a Muyshondt Flieger Mk I.

    Product was provided by the manufaturer and will be returned to the manufacturer. There was no consideration (payment or otherwise). I am not connected in any way to Muyshondt.

    Iíve long been a fan of Muyshondt lights, so it didnít take me very long to decide if I would take up the opportunity. I accepted right away. Typically, an 18650-sized light is not what I would choose to carry around or use, but I was curious to see what Enrique had done with the Flieger, his largest light to date.



    Product page (edit - link removed)

    Muyshondt's marketing material, and the light name (Flieger = aviator in German) are thematically tied to airline pilots and their typical use of a flashlight like this (at least in the way I would romanticize it). I think the light delivers very well on this theme. It is a light that could be stashed in a pilot's carry on and be used for pre-flight inspections and general cockpit use or in an emergency -- say during a catastrophic engine power failure and the pilot is trying to find the secondary fuel bypass lever in a cockpit 30,000 feet in the air, at night. I have no idea what a secondary fuel bypass is, I just made that up. But I like the reassuring fantasy that the pilots who are flying me to wherever I am going have quality flashlights available. I digressÖ.

    The dynamic range of the light (dim to bright) is well suited for a wide range of applications (from reading a map without destroying your navigation eyes to inspecting large machine from a distance). Personally, I like the fact the light always starts on low so thereís no risk of blinding yourself on launch. The lightís max mode is powerful (see level testing results below), so blasting your eyes in pitch darkness could be shocking. Luckily it is not a risk here.





    The packaging of the light is typical of a Muyshondt light: Professionally executed and befitting a finely crafted, quality object. Included are an ownership card signed by the man himself reminding us that the light uses a monocoque design (more on this later), and an instruction card. I would hope that most people buying this light do not require instructions, but in the off-chance someone canít figure it out, the instructions will be there to help. Note, a friend of mine did take a disconcertingly long time to figure out where the battery opening was. The ownership card and instructions are printed (or perhaps embossed is the right word) on a heavy card stock. You won't throw them out. I am sure paper lovers (and packaging lovers) will be delighted.



    The pragmatist in me says that the packaging is adding unnecessary cost, but I guess once you break the $500 threshold for a flashlight, some nice packaging is not outrageous. It does add a nice flair for those who are gifting one of these lights.

    Turning to the light itself: the build quality is outstanding. Likely higher than any light I have handled (and I have handled many). The Flieger is firmly in the "high-end-small-run" category. Muyshondt typically have shorter production cycles so if you like what you see, don't delay. This is not a "production" light being pumped out of Asian contract manufacturers until a new LED rolls along.

    The monocoque body is solid. Just so you don't have to look it up, the word means "an aircraft or vehicle structure in which the chassis is integral with the body." It has been applied to select dive watch designs for a higher depth rating Ė see the Seiko Marine Master 300, for instance. Does this apply to flashlights? Now it does! I would have no concerns driving over this light or pitching it from an airplane taxiing down the tarmac.



    The deep, machined grips work very well for typical carry. Looking at it initially, I thought it would be too smooth, but in practice, there were no issues with grip. It has grips where they are needed. The grip really grew on me. At first, I felt it was awkward, but after a month of use, I would not change it.

    The light is available in two materials: titanium and aluminium bronze. The light I have here is a titanium stonewashed finish. It feels as good as it looks. Either material will last longer than you.



    I would, however, suggest that a clip would help with grip. The lack of a clip was one of the first things I noticed on the light and is still on my list of things Iíd like to see. I can understand the desire to not have it if you believe that a clip is just for clipping but I believe that clips can also serve as a handy grip element and also something to attach a lanyard too (which I often do on more expensive lights). I hate dropping lights on concrete even though this one would likely survive the drop with no issues due to its 'built like a brick house' design; but I still hate doing it. Most people would likely not use a clip on an 18650 light for clipping, but I personally would. I have similarly sized lights and do frequently carry them in my pocket (eg. McGizmo Haiku 2x123). Another key benefit of a clip is for anti-roll. I almost had the Flieger roll off my desk a couple times. Despite it's name, it is not flying anywhere but down...



    The light, as received, was shipped with a Muyshondt battery installed with the requisite isolation tab to be removed before it would work. I was personally pleased to see that Enrique had batteries made to correspond with the production of the light; and rechargeable at that. This is the first light from Muyshondt designed around rechargeable cells and personally, I couldnít be happier about it. In fact, let me underscore this: I am very happy that Muyshondt are jumping with both feet into lights designed for rechargeable cells. I hope there are more to come (there are wicked rumours circulating on a certain Facebook group). The battery label is very distinctive and I understand it has a protection circuit built in.



    For years, I have restricted myself to AW cells and there are not many people I would trust to commission miniature bombs (aka Li-Ion cells) more than Muyshondt. I like using quality cells and I have confidence that these are based around quality cells but I did not specifically test this. Batteries are not something I like to have issues with having worked in a Duracell quality lab MANY years ago. You need to have confidence in your cells. The battery is rated at 3400 mAH which is at the high end for 18650 cells. I did not confirm capacity, but I am pretty sure it will get you from one power outlet to the next (even if you are taking the 7700 mile Air India Flight 173 from Delhi to San Francisco). I charged the cell once for a month of average daily use.



    I decided to charge the battery before heading out on my first little tour with the light. This is where I hit a snag. I grabbed an AW cell and popped it in the light, pumped the switch; however, no light. No amount of clicking or twisting the switch would turn it on. I pulled the cell out and had a look inside and compared the Muyshondt cell to the AW. AW's cell is a flat top and the Muyshondt is a button top. This normally is not an issue, but the Flieger is keyed for button top cells. Basically, if you don't have a button top on your cell, the light won't work. A design recommendation here is to make future lights compatible with flat top cells as well.



    The light is compatible with multiple battery configurations which is a really nice feature. I tried a couple AW 18350 cells and they worked just fine. I did not test the 2x CR123 option, but the light does come with an adapter that permits this option. To me, this would be an "in a pinch" scenario.

    Firing up the light I noticed there seems to be a tiny lag (tenth of a second, perhaps) between clicking the switch and before the light comes on. Is this an issue? No. But I wanted to note it.

    The beam quality is nothing short of perfection. I find the tint more on the "yellowy" side. It is reasonably warm, but it is truly pleasant and comforting to behold. I personally prefer a ...slightly... cooler LED, but this is as personal as underwear. The specifications call out a warm white LED; and it is. Warmer LEDs usually have better CRI ratings. I don't know how this one is rated, but in practical use, it is a pleasure to behold.



    The specifications for the light inform me that it has a sapphire crystal lens. This makes me happy. Is it really necessary? No, but I love it. Knowing that I can't scratch the lens just contributes to the bricky nature of the light.



    I wanted to check out the output claims on the light so I trucked on over to selfbuilt's place. I am lucky enough to know the man himself and he was kind enough to let me use his light box to estimate the output of the Flieger. Now, admittedly the battery was not fully charged when I did these measurements (it was 3.8 V unloaded) I think I could say that the published estimates are conservative. The LED is not overdriven, the levels are very stable and the light is easily able to produce what is claimed. Numbers below are in lumens.

    Level, Published Output, Measured Output
    1, 1, 0.86
    2, 25, 34.6
    3, 100, 148
    4, 500, 675
    5, 720, 854

    In short, the light performs above spec here and with a depleted battery. The light does warm up in the hand on level 5 only, but the monocoque body does a great job of distributing the heat. I have no concerns using this light on high.

    The one thing I would note is that in general there is no need for level 4. Visually, seeing the difference between 675 and 854 lumens is virtually impossible. I noticed this before the test and the numbers bear it out. My one suggestion here would be to make this a four level light and drop current level 4. As I mentioned before there is a nice dynamic range in the light output and this is visible in the numbers: 0.86 to 854 lumens. This is a very useful range and should cover most people's expected utility of this tool.

    At selfbuilt's place we also took the time to measure the lux of the light. We calculated 7550 lux at 1 m which corresponds to a beam distance of 173 m (568 ft) at 0.25 lux.

    These values (lux and lumens) can be compared against other lights that selfbuilt has reviewed in case you want to check against something you have.

    We also did a quick check for PWM and could not detect any by sight nor via the traditional fan test. We can only assume the LED is driven with a constant current driver at all levels or with a very high PWM freqency. This is expected with such a high quality light.

    I want to make special mention of the switch assembly. For me, this is one of the Fliegerís crowning glories. It is extremely well done. Just the right amount of tension; a nice click; good travel distance. It is a reverse clicky and soft taps quickly cycle through the modes. It is a pleasure to use. The button is titanium and the housing is titanium. The threads are square and very smooth. I was delighted to see that there were two o-rings. This is the gold standard if you want to make a seal and keep moisture out. I hope this switch will be used on other lights in the future (wink, wink).



    My only criticism of the switch is that it is tough to get out. Not impossible, but not easy. Don't try if you have gloves on. I can only assume that the two body protrusions that make this more difficult are there to protect the switch but there may also be an aesthetic element here in the design. They do make the removal more of a challenge than warranted in my opinion. The switch does need to be removed to replace the battery, which is not a frequent occurrence given the capacity of the cell. In short, I would summarize this as a minor quibble. I will also admit that I got better at removing the switch with some practice to the point where it is less of a concern than it was when I first received the light.







    For fun, I did ask selfbuilt to change the battery on the light since I knew of my other friendís challenges. After he played around with the light for a minute (maybe less), he gave up. No amount of twisting the body was going to open it up to reveal the battery. Once I demonstrated how to remove the switch and thus the cell it was not an issue. I guess the point here is that it is unlikely that somebody is going to steal your battery! That, and maybe the instructions are more necessary than I originally thoughtÖ

    Tail stand test: success!



    Pocket test: fail! This light creates a horizontal bone effect. Refer to clip suggestion.



    If you can live with the minor critiques presented here and have a use for a high quality lighting instrument, then, the Flieger gets a recommendation from me.

    Fieger in action (beside a cheap light for strobe):



    Summary:

    1. Awesome quality light. Heirloom quality.
    2. Switch and operation very well executed. Pleasure to use.
    3. LED selection is great (on the warm side).
    4. Great output (excellent range; low to high - can cover most conceivable uses.
    5. Lack of attachment points disappointing (clip or lanyard hole).
    6. Bonus: high quality cells available directly from builder.
    7. Anti-bonus: flat top cells won't work in the light.

    My only comparable light is the McGizmo Aqua. Some comparison shots:







    Some other comparison shots with McGizmos from my collection:







    And with the Muyshondt Mako (David and Goliath - although I don't feel the Goliath label fits the Flieger. It is not a huge light.):



    Thanks for reading,

    eala
    Last edited by archimedes; 05-02-2017 at 09:45 PM. Reason: lightly edited to comply with Reviews subforum rules

  2. #2

    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Great review... of a great torch! I haven't yet read this review cover to cover, but I plan to on my day off. :-)

    Oh yeah... I like level 4. I agree there's not a big jump from 4 to 5, and yeah I wish 5 was driven harder but I say that about every light.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Quote Originally Posted by eala View Post
    Mods - for consideration for the review sub-forum - Thanks, eala
    ....
    Would you please clarify if this product was provided or purchased, and any other connection (or not) to the manufacturer ?
    Last edited by archimedes; 05-02-2017 at 09:15 PM.
    ... is the archimedes peak

  4. #4

    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Quote Originally Posted by archimedes View Post
    Would you please clarify if this product was provided or purchased, and any other connection (or not) to the manufacturer ?
    For sure. I should have clarified in the review. Product was provided by the manufaturer and will be returned to the manufacturer. There was no consideration (payment or otherwise). Just did it for fun.

    I am not connected in any way to Muyshondt.

    eala

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Quote Originally Posted by eala View Post
    For sure. I should have clarified in the review. Product was provided by the manufaturer and will be returned to the manufacturer. There was no consideration (payment or otherwise). Just did it for fun.

    I am not connected in any way to Muyshondt.

    eala
    Thanks for clarifying.

    Links are also not allowed in the Reviews section.

    We've seen an increase in new reviewers recently (which is welcome).

    The Reviews subforum has a few special rules, located here ....

    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...ement.php?a=16

    I'll take a detailed look, but it otherwise looks fine, and very informative.
    Last edited by archimedes; 05-02-2017 at 09:25 PM.
    ... is the archimedes peak

  6. #6

    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Great review! I have a prototype and agree with almost everything here. Fantastic light.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Thread lightly edited, and moved to Reviews

    -----

    Thanks @eala !
    ... is the archimedes peak

  8. #8

    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Good work archimedes.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Looks like we have to add this one to the bucket list? Thanks for doing this review!

    A pocket clip would have completed this awesome package!
    Last edited by xdayv; 05-02-2017 at 10:21 PM.
    Dave
    "two is one, one is none... three or more is fun."

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Quote Originally Posted by wimmer21 View Post
    Good work archimedes.

    Thanks wim
    ... is the archimedes peak

  11. #11

    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Thanks for the review.
    I like the personal design of this Muyshondt.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Thanks archimedes. I feel like I just got bumped from coach to business class.

    eala

  13. #13
    *Flashaholic* PoliceScannerMan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Great review, light looks like a winner. pocket clip would be a +.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Based on the images it looks to be a Panasonic NCR18650B under the wrapper of the cell.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Great review eala, looks a very nice light, kind of one you have to fondle and never put down. Real nice design..............

  16. #16
    Flashaholic* KITROBASKIN's Avatar
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    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Quote Originally Posted by archimedes View Post
    Thanks for clarifying.

    Links are also not allowed in the Reviews section

    The Reviews subforum has a few special rules, located here ....

    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...ement.php?a=16
    Just to add to this information, here is a link from a link on the above link.

    https://www.ftc.gov/tips-advice/busi...-asking#social

  17. #17

    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Any questions before I send this back?

    If I get time, I will try a beamshot.

    eala

  18. #18
    Flashaholic* Str8stroke's Avatar
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    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Beam shot compared to that Aqua would be really neat to see. Just to satisfy my curiosity. I absolutely love ALMOST everything about the light. But......No clip means I can't own it.

    I really love the Cigar shape lights. This one would be a stone cold winner in my book with a clip. I guess I find, no clip or lanyard attachment odd. Looks like it is built bank vault solid as to be expected.
    Thanks for your review. Great pics btw.
    Interested in Saltytri lights. Pm me!


  19. #19

    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    I would love to have done a beamshot with the Aqua, but I happened to trade it for another light a couple days ago. Best I can do is a beamshot comparison with my Haiku. The Haiku runs a 4500K XPL-HI and output is measured at 460 lumens, Shots taken at the same exposure and f-stop.

    Haiku:


    Flieger:


    Can't do much about the potlights... sorry.

    eala

  20. #20

    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Great review! Seeing this review and getting my first Muyshondt (an Ion) the other day, makes me want one of these! A clip would be nice, but I actually have a few lights that I prefer without one. (namely, the HDS rotary and twisty)
    SureFire - Quality and brilliance

  21. #21

    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Excellent review and an equally excellent light. Enrique is on a continued roll with each new release.

    With regards to no clip, Enrique has posted in the Flieger release thread that a leather sheath with a belt loop attachment is in the works.
    Last edited by moshow9; 05-03-2017 at 08:45 PM.
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  22. #22

    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Slim chance I know but...any chance you have a 1.55X6 trit vial? Love to see if they could be put into any of the grooves on the light.

    Great light, on my list.

  23. #23

    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    I don't have one of those vials, but the deep grooves around the light are about 2 mm wide and look to be 2 mm deep. Not sure how you would make this work however as these grooves run right around the light.

    I also don't think there is enough meat in the walls of the light to machine out some slots. I measure the wall thickness at 3.1 mm. I am not an expert in this regard.

    You might be able to get some in the switch. I did not disassemble the switch to confirm (and won't).

    eala

  24. #24

    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Thanks for the reply! I was thinking maybe on the vertical grooves that run up the body. It might be a possibility. Appreciate the measurement.

  25. #25

    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    No, those are way too small. I should take a photo of the light in my hand. It is quite a tidy light for 18650. Fits well in the hand.

    eala

  26. #26

    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Thanks for checking. Would love to see a photo in the hand. No rush!

  27. #27
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    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Thanks for the fine review.

    I considered buying one during the pre-production promotional pricing but the lack of a clip was a deal-breaker. I also would have appreciated a complete set of specs before ordering, which wasn't available then.
    Oveready Boss 35 & 70; LensLight Mini; HDS Rotary 325 XP-L, Clicky 170W, Rotary 250; ZebraLight SC600w Mk III HI, SC600W, SC62W, SC60W, SC52W, SC51C, SC5W; EagleTac NW D25LC2, NW D25A, DX30LC2 Clicky; Fenix PD35; Quark Ti AA & 2-123-T; Quark AA-T and 123-2-T; Nitecore D10R2 and D10R2 (Tribute)

  28. #28
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    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Lack of a clip killed it for me as well. I was so ready to order and I was for sure he would change his mind about the clip. Nope.

  29. #29

    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Sorry it took a while sledhead.






  30. #30

    Default Re: Muyshondt Flieger Review

    Oh, and that is a Beagle on the other side of the Flieger.

    eala

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