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Thread: The vintage California cop light company thread

  1. #331
    Flashaholic* LiftdT4R's Avatar
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    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Very nice!! You bet me to it on the bay, lol. I did see that was a Covina model so it's going to be a super early light! Please let us know what the serial is when you get it. I'm willing to bet it's very low. Someone took awesome care of that light when they owned it!

  2. #332

    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Feeling jelly here.
    Good score(s) fellows.


    One guy in another thread he still uses his Tekna Splash-Lite after 33 years.
    John 3:16

  3. #333

    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Quote Originally Posted by konifans View Post

    Gold Kel-Lite 2C, this photo is from the seller. I should get it in 2 weeks.
    I received the light but it has battery leakage inside the light and probably because of this I cannot remove the tailcap. What a pity. I have to return the light.
    This is the Covina version, the head, barrel and tailcap were well polished so the surface is smooth. That is better than the later Barstow version. I am not sure if it had a special polishing process for gold anodizing. And the knurling is better, too. It has no serial number on the barrel.

  4. #334
    Flashaholic* LiftdT4R's Avatar
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    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Don't return it! Sell it to me or send it my way, the original seller will likely junk it and that would be a shame for such a rare light. I'd be happy to take a look at it for you and fix it or add it to my collection. Please shoot me a PM. Thanks!!!

    If you would like it fixed I'd be more than happy to do it free of charge if you can cover shipping and any parts. Of course there is a risk it won't be successful or may damage the light. I've gotten every light fixed I've tried some have just come out a little better than others.

    Here's a nice gold Maglite I just fixed that had 2 seized batteries and a stuck end cap. Just as good as new when it was completed.




  5. #335

    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Definitely!!

    Lift'd can do it.

    I had a junky Vare-Beam that was sun faded, rusty, and plagued by work bench destruction to remove a stuck tailcap and he made it look pretty good. Ha, he even made it round again and got most of the vice marks out of it.
    Magically he got the sun fade on one side to match the unfaded side too.
    Last edited by bykfixer; 07-10-2018 at 05:30 PM.
    John 3:16

  6. #336
    Flashaholic* LiftdT4R's Avatar
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    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Lol, I don't know about the sun fade but I am able to do quite a bit with some rough lights. No guarantees but I haven't lost one yet. That Vari-Beam is a sweet one! Low serial intermediate one if IIRC. Aw heck, I know ya got some pics!

  7. #337

    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Thanks mate! Unfortunately I already returned the light two days ago...

  8. #338

    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    I'd like to take the time to mention that Lumens Factory is doing some great things for some of the late model cop lights like the Pelican M6, Streamlights TL2 incan and Stinger incan along with SureFire products.
    The SureFire stuff is well known but....
    Mark also makes LED upgrades for Streamlights and Pelicans. The Pelican upgrades also fit Pentagon products. The TL2 upgrade also fits NiteFighter lights.

    I've recently seen where Mark @LF along with another CPF member are colaborating on possible McClicky switches and sleeve for the weak link in the chain Pelican M3/6 lights. That could open up a new chapter for what was once one of the best 6 volt cop lights made in California USA.
    Last edited by bykfixer; 07-15-2018 at 08:54 AM.
    John 3:16

  9. #339

    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Feeling nostalgic: Kel-Lite style

    But which one?


    The 4C has a 3cell Brinkmann krypton bulb for a nice throwey white beam thanks to ultraclear glass.

    The 3C uses the stock lexan for a bit wider spot and better blend with 2x 18650's and a PR based 4cell Mag bulb.

    The 2C is outfitted with an ultraclear polycarbinate, and fires a crisp white beam from a pair of 18500 LifePo4's and a PR based 4cell Mag bulb.


    Decisions, decisions.....
    John 3:16

  10. #340
    Flashaholic* LiftdT4R's Avatar
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    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Oooh that's a tough one. My vote is for the 2C. I love how compact those little lights are with their external switch. I use mine all the time!!


  11. #341
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    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Konifans, I was able to purchase your 2C from the ebay seller. I got her all fixed up and good as new. If you're interested in having it back please let me know. I'm more than happy to let it go for what I have into it which is probably about what you paid for it the first time around. Until then it's looking sharp with my #573 serial 5D and Lanyard ring end 2C. I've heard there was a blue Kel-lite also but this is the most colorful assortment I've ever seen.




  12. #342

    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Can you show a gold tailcap pic Lift'd? I'm curious if it has the Kel-Lite logo or not. It looks like it's a bit more rounded than non logo'd ones.

    The white slider is cool too. A lego with the white switch plate on a black barrel, gold ends.... stuff like that would be sweet too.
    John 3:16

  13. #343
    Flashaholic* LiftdT4R's Avatar
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    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Yessir, please see below. The first year of Kel-Lite production was 1968. 1968 and 1969 lights have no stamping on the tail cap and no serials. Serials started in 1971. That puts this light right at 1970.

    Kel-Lite, like Maglite later on, produced gold finishes from time to time and sold them in small quantities. That's likely what this one is. It came from a company that specializes in estate sales so unfortunately I didn't get too much info with it.


  14. #344

    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Thanks LiftdT4R. I think you should keep the light as you saved it. The machining of this version seems much better than the later ones, especially the tailcap which I think it might be produced by another supplier...

  15. #345

    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    On my 4C I found myself bidding against Don Keller who wanted the tailcap, which is like the gold one shown.

    He told me later that he stopped bidding when it hit +$35.
    John 3:16

  16. #346
    Flashaholic* LiftdT4R's Avatar
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    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Thanks!! If ya change your mind lemme know, she's all yours. The machining does feel better overall. It could just be that the tooling was new since the light is from so early in the the production run. The 1979 Maglites are like this too. Very sharp engraving and one of the best grips on any light I've ever felt. The rumor is that Maglite actually dulled down the grip because it was tearing up holsters and pants because it was too sharp and I believe it.

    I think Don is mainly using the lights as parts lights because he gets a lot of inquiries to fix up old Kel-Lites. If a light has a good reflector I know he'll pay $40 - $50 for it because replacements reflectors are impossible to find. He's not really buying to collect though, he has mostly one of every model you can think of. He's asked me a couple times about restoring reflectors and I know I have to experiment a little more. The original reflectors were electroplated and that is not easy to duplicate. I've had luck with using aircraft stripper and polishing. While not the same as an electroplated it's 70% of the way there. I've been meaning to prime one and hit it with almost chrome. I have a buddy that restores vintage Hot Wheels and he's had super good luck with that method. It's a 95% match to the original reflectors.

  17. #347
    Flashaholic* LiftdT4R's Avatar
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    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Any of you guys going to be bidding on the NIB very early Gemlite? I think I might. Gemlites were Kel-Lite knock offs, they were made by one of the 3rd part machine shops that produced Kel-Lite parts because Kel-Lite demand was so high and Don had a hard time filling orders. I have 1 but it's a later style.

    This is the one that's for sale:


  18. #348

    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Go for it.
    John 3:16

  19. #349

    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Go for it!

    The switch looks like a Bianchi?

  20. #350

    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    If you score it please show us the details.
    Not price, but stuff like bulb holder, switch details etc.
    John 3:16

  21. #351
    Flashaholic* LiftdT4R's Avatar
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    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    You got it and I'm going for it. Unfortunately I don't have a Bianchi to compare it to. One of the few gaps in my collection. Anyway, I have a light, courtesy of Mr. Fixer, that has been my favorite for quite some time. Sometimes the best things really are free. It's a 6R and IIRC I traded Mr. Fixer for a resto on a 3D Vari-Beam. The batteries were sourced free from work, errrr uhh they were uhh a donation. The M60L I purchased with a C2 Centurion on the bay that I resold at a profit without the drop in so this light is as close to free as it gets. Amazing I use it all the time. The ~150 lumen output is actually too bright sometimes and it gets about a 2 hour run time on the 16340s. I like it so much so that I'm thinking about spending the coin on a M31LL or an M61NLL.





    Also, did anyone see this "Brass Streamlight" on fleabay? It's a rare 3D camo for only $30. I'd pick it up if I didn't already have a 3D and 4C. These only come up once a year or two.


  22. #352
    Flashaholic* LiftdT4R's Avatar
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    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Anybody see this "Hi-Lite" on the bay? It looks identical to the Gem-Lite I just purchased. Does anyone know anything about them? Looks to be a Kel-Lite knock off. It's stamped with what looks like a distributor's name, Herrett's Stocks Inc, Twin Falls, Idaho, on the side opposite Hi-Lite.




  23. #353

    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    A Vari-Beam 4C with serial number 40000002
    https://www.ebay.com/itm/RARE-4-C-VA...vari+beam.TRS0

  24. #354
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    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    LiftdT4R, do you use the 6R tube. ?

    Bill

  25. #355
    Flashaholic* LiftdT4R's Avatar
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    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Quote Originally Posted by konifans View Post
    A Vari-Beam 4C with serial number 40000002
    https://www.ebay.com/itm/RARE-4-C-VA...vari+beam.TRS0
    Wow! That sold quick!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Bullzeyebill View Post
    LiftdT4R, do you use the 6R tube. ?

    Bill
    Hey Bill, I don't. I never could find a good use for it. So I put it in my Surefire parts box. Do you know of any battery setups it would work with. It's pretty short so I'm guessing maybe 2 x 18500?

  26. #356
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    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Four MiMh 2/3A might work with P60 LA. 2x18500's would would not fit, 2x17500 might be ok.

    Bill

  27. #357

    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread





























    I got these ligths in NEW condition.... The Vari-Beam should be the most beautiful light I have. Can anyone tell me, that this blue color is same as the current blue Maglites? I do not have a blue Mag but from the photos I have seen in the internet, it seems that the blue Mags are darker than the Vari-Beam? I am thinking getting a blue and a silver mini-Mag, and swap their bezel caps and tail caps...to pretend a 2AA Vari-Beam...

  28. #358

    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread


    “A Cutie For A Cutie”

















    2D, 4D, 5D, 6D, 7D, so missing a 3D..
    I got the 4D and 5D in new condition.





  29. #359
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    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    Beautiful examples konifans, and an extra WOW to that blue/silver varibeam

  30. #360

    Default Re: The vintage California cop light company thread

    More epic-epicness konifans.

    The vare-beam blue is nowhere near close to the current blue being used by Maglite. Like sky blue versus cop uniform blue.

    I think Lift'd could probably tell you when the vare-blue was ceased.
    John 3:16

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