Fenix LD41 Review - 4 AA - XM-L

firelord777

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 11, 2010
Messages
931
Location
USA
Hello my fellow buds,

I just recently received in the mail a Fenix LD41 that just came out from Fenix Outfitters. According to the USPS tracking number, it was shipped from Oklahoma the 10th of July and was supposed to arrive at the 13th of July. To my surprise and great happiness, it arrived the 12th July, in Florida. You know us flashaholics, the waiting is the tough part. I totally recommend the guys over at fenixoutfitters. If you would like to check it out, here is the link: http://www.fenixoutfitters.com/ I’ve never heard of any negative feedback from them, ever.

Below are the official specifications of the light:

This is the newest addition to the LD Series--520 Lumens from 4 AA batteries! This "small rocket" delivers 160 hours of long runtime, features 4 brightness levels, one rapid strobe, a hidden SOS, plus has a dual tail cap switch and unique battery holder design. Great light for various outdoor activities such as searching, camping, caving, etc.

Features:
• Cree XM-L (2) LED
• Powered by 4 1.5V AA (Ni-MH, Alkaline) batteries
• Max 520 Lumens; max 160 hours of runtime for long-time reading and camping
• Max 200 meter long throwing beam
• 4 Brightness Levels and 2 flashing modes
• LOW 5 Lumens - 160 hours; MID 80 Lumens - 20 hours; HIGH 190 Lumens - 7 1/2 hours; TURBO 520 Lumens - 2 hours 10 min.
• Momentary-on Function
• Intelligent memory circuit, automatically enters the previous brightness level when turned on again
• Flat body design makes a comfortable hold
• Patented technology for battery holder, made of PC quality material, wear resistant and shock resistant
• Made of durable aircraft-grade aluminum, premium Type III hard-anodized finish, scratch resistant and wear resistant
• Waterproof to IPX-8 standards, underwater at 2 meters
• 175mm Length, 40mm Diameter
• 180-gram weight (excluding batteries)
• Digitally regulated output to maintain a constant brightness
• Reverse polarity protection guards against improper battery installation
• Low-voltage reminder indicates when battery replacement is needed
• Anti-roll, slip-resistant body design
• Tactical tail cap
• Toughened ultra-clear glass lens with anti-reflective coating
**NOTICE: The LD41 will automatically enter into the High brightness level from the Turbo brightness level after a 30-minute working time with the security setting. So the runtime of the Turbo brightness level is the accumulated time. (I know in the specs it doesn’t say whether or not you can go back to turbo, but after reviewing the manual, you can, just turn it off and back on if needed, but keep an eye on the heat level)
**The above-mentioned parameters (lab-tested with 2500mAh Ni-MH batteries) are approximate and may vary between flashlights, batteries, and environments.

And, so, I don’t want to bother you guys, so without further ado, here are some images, to get y’all in the “mood”.
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The whole package comes with a Fenix LD41 (duh), a spare o-ring, a spare tail boot, a nice lanyard and a holster. It also includes a…box. Haha, just kidding, but it does come with it, along with a bubble wrapped shipping bag, so I wouldn’t worry about any bumps in the road. Oh forgot to mention it also comes with a manual in English and Chinese, and a Fenix warranty card, a fenixoutfitters coupon for ~%10, and a folded advertisement the size of a business card.
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First Impressions:
When I got my first look of the LD41 in the box, I thought, wow, it’s a bit bigger than I thought. Maybe it’s because when I was waiting for it, I would get 4 AA and position them parallel, and would think it was going to be small. Don’t worry, though, it’s not “monster-light” sized, but frankly, its something that may bother you if you stick it in your pocket just like that. In short, it’s a holster light, between an EDC class and 3C maglite class. Don’t worry, again, I’ll cover these things more deeply later on. The metal body felt very sturdy, With batteries installed, it had some weight to it, and when I turned it on, whoa! Its bright! I was sort of expecting that though… The power button had a nice tough spring or something, because, well, I promise you, there is no way the flashlight will turn on in your pocket. Not even the light’s own weight can turn it on, even momentarily. The black color was very well done, not a blemish in sight, and I am a attention-to-detail person.
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Construction:
The flashlight, as previously mentioned, is built very solidly. “But does it rattle my friend?” – I know this is a question many have probably formulated at this point. The answer is, a big giant “nope”. I am happy to report there is not a peep of battery rattle in this gal, just completely silent. But she has yet another feature. In the pictures below, you will see the battery carrier, and in the pictures with my cheap AA CVS NIMH batteries (money is tight at the moment, actually, it always has been LOL). And so my point is, that I am not sure if you guys can see it clearly, but there is the main groove where the AAs go, but in the middle part, there is this piece, that encloses the battery even more than the half-circled groove. That, my friends, is the thing I’m talking about. I could even hold the battery carrier upside down and the battery would seem to defy gravity. Technically its not, but if we all just use a bit of imagination… Oh, and it seems that some form of electronics are incorporated into the battery carrier, I suppose the circuits or something, maybe someone else can chime in.
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If another question you may ask goes along the lines of “well, what if you put in the battery carrier in the wrong position?” The answer is, you can’t. There is a small raised ridge incorporated into the light handle that will only allow the side of the battery carrier that has the groove to accommodate the ridge to go in. So if the batteries aren’t going in, its probably not the light’s fault.
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The head is solidly built, with good, clean contacts, and I’ve had no problems with it.
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Comparisons:
Size of the flashlight (from left to right):

1. Fenix TK20 – Fenix LD41 – ArmyTek Viking X
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2. Klarus XT20 – ArmyTek Viking X – Fenix LD41 – Nitefighter F30C – Fenix TK41 (Note, these are all the XM-L class lights I currently have)
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3. Fenix LD41 – Fenix LD12
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Reflector Size
1. Vs Fenix LD12
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2. Vs ArmyTek Viking X
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3. Vs Nitefighter F30C
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4. Vs Klarus XT20
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5. Vs Fenix TK41
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6. Vs ArmyTek Predator SMO
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7. Vs Fenix TK20
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8. Vs ArmyTek Viking S
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9. Vs Cree (AKA “China”)
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Below, I took some pictures on the lanyard and how to install a lanyard on a light. I know many already know, but hey, there are still those that aren’t born knowing how to put a lanyard on something, I know because I was one of them:
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Below also, I have pictures of the holster. Now, while it is possible to put the LD41 head up, I found it to be much faster and easier to put it head down in the holster. The holster has two loops in the back, the big one I assume is for the belt, and the second tiny loop I guess is for a lanyard, at least that’s how I used it in the LD12 holster.
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Beamshots:
The Fenix LD41 has two modes and four output levels. Mode one is the one that is set to default, so everytime you turn it on, you will have the last memorized output level you used, either 5, 80, 190, or 520 lumens. If you want to go to mode two, which has strobe, you must press and hold the mode button for approximately 3 seconds, which will set the light to variable strobe. Variable strobe is basically a fast strobe for two seconds, then a slow strobe for another two seconds. That’s basically it, and the process repeats over and over again. If you want to go to SOS, from strobe, you have to press and hold for another 3 seconds and SOS will come out as 80 lumens.

All pictures have the same exposure:
Low – 5 lumens:
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Mid – 80 lumens:
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High – 190 lumens:
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Turbo – 520 lumens:
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Comparison Beamshots (lights are positioned around 4-5 feet away):
All exposures are equal, as are reduced exposures and secondary reduced exposures:
ArmyTek Viking X
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Reduced exposure
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Nitefighter F30C
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Reduced exposure
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Second reduced exposure
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Klarus XT20
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Reduced exposure
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Second reduced exposure
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Fenix TK41
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Reduced Exposure
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Second reduced exposure
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Fenix LD41
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Reduced Exposure
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Second reduced exposure
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ArmyTek Predator SMO
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Reduced exposure
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Second reduced exposure
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ArmyTek Predator OP
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Reduced exposure
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Second reduced exposure
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Cree (it had no lanyard on it, and an unstable shape, so I had to use some yarn, but nonetheless, you can see that it clearly has a large spill)
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Reduced exposure
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Second reduced exposure
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Spill Comparisons:
Fenix LD41
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Nitefighter F30C
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ArmyTek Viking X
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Fenix LD12
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Cree
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Klarus XT20
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Fenix TK41
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ArmyTek Predator SMO
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ArmyTek Predator OP
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Fenix TK20
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Relative Size:
The LD41 is sort of like a medium sized companion. It’s not tiny, nor large. Pretty much, it’s a balanced light. Literally, the beam is balanced between throw and flood, its output levels are balanced, and so, therefore, its size should be balanced. Here are a few pics to give you an idea:
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Water Immersion Testing
That’s just a fancy title for “how’s the waterproofing?”. Well, it passed. I wasn’t surprised, as I always test out the lights for waterproofing. They’ve never failed me. But it got me thinking, to waterproof a flashlight, you have to cover so many possible areas prone to failing to keep elements out, such as the head of the light, especially around the glass of the light. I mean, I wouldn’t know where to start if asked to waterproof a non-waterproof light. Below, you’ll see a few pictures of the light before the immersion in my sink of doom. I’m just showing that although the light tailstands with the lanyard on, it is a bit wobbly. Its more stable without it basically. Anyways, here are the pictures ladies and gentlemen:
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Special Lens Coating?
During my usual waterproofing tests, I have to wipe the water droplets of the glass. But on the LD41, the glass seems almost hydrophobic. I’ve never seen it before on any of my lights. When I dunk it in water, and take it out, there’s barely any amount of water on the lens! I was like, “what in the world?”. My first thoughts was that in some sort of “tactical” situation, the user can immerse it in water, then illuminate a target without any artifacts or “holes” in the beam that happen with normal lights. Still, I know many don’t usually NEED to have this feature, but you got to admit, its cool.
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Handling:
The LD41 has a unique shape. Its also in a unique class of flashlights. It uses the high powered modern XM-L LED, and its powered by 4 AA batteries. The only other lights that I know that use this configuration is the PA40, LD40, E40 and some sort of old streamlight. So, I know there are many 1 AA, 2 AA lights out there, as well as 8 AA beasts like the TK40/41/45, but the 4 AA configuration is just sweet, a perfect balance between weight, power, and size between the two extremes. I’m very happy with it. I have a few images showing ways one can hold the LD41:

Style #1: This is how I first handled the light. After a while I realized that the middle of my thumb would uncomfortably make contact with the end of the light when attempting to turn it on.
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Style #2: So then instead of holding it vertically in my hand, I put it horizontally, and that proved much, much, better. Now I could freely use the light without any interference of any sort.
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Style #3: I’m not too sure how this way is called, but I call it the “light saber” grip. This is a comfortable grip when using the light around the height of your waist and abdomen. However, you have to turn it on and set the mode you want prior to using the light in this way.
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Style #4: I’m pretty sure IIRC (If I Recall / Remember Correctly), that this grip was called the cigar grip, if not feel free to correct me. Whilst holding it in the cigar grip, in vertical form, it is comfortable for quite some time, despite being front heavy.
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Style #5: Same as style #4, except in its horizontal form. This style was very uncomfortable and impractical, so maybe it’s not even a style.
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Style #6: I included this style because I remember this is how some people use their lights in conjunction with a small firearm. I’m not sure how the hold is called, but for now, let’s just call it the “tac grip” until someone more knowledgeable in this field chimes in.

EDIT - enomoski has just kindly did us the great favor of saying the name of this grip. It's called the Harries grip. Thanks man! Read his post for a more professional description :D
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Up Close and Personal:
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Real-Life Use:
My father works as an A&P engineer and as an avionics technician. He works night shifts, so he takes a flashlights to work. He took the LD41 and the next afternoon when he woke up, he told how all his buddies loved the flashlight. I know I might not usually write this in my other reviews (I gotta update them soon), but he everytime he takes a newly acquired flashlight to work, his buds always love the lights and always ask where they can get one and etc (I’ll do something about that soon). And because he works in planes, sometimes working at the top a few stories high wearing a harness, its sort of like being a car mechanic on steroids (not literally). So the lights all get their fair share of abuse from drops and contact with other tools. Surprisingly, the lights only get a few small nicks in the anodizing every now and then. So far, the LD41 only has a nick the size of one of your screen’s pixel on the crenulated bezel, I mean, very small and hard to find. And there’s another one on the tail bezel that’s even smaller, I would guess the size of a pixel of a “retina display”, yep, there’re tiny. So my point here is that the light has a solid build, and if you look back at the photos, its almost like the light should be in the TK class of lights from the thickness of the aluminum in some parts.

My dad’s boss even tried to “legally steal” the light. He told my dad: “as your boss, I demand you give me the flashlight (to keep it)”, and my dad responded, “I would love to, but the light isn’t mine, its my son’s, sorry”. It’s funny, but in the rare case you don’t find it amusing, my excuse is that it was funnier when my dad said it.

During normal house use, the light is perfect. It’s extremely bright, and anything not directly illuminated by the beam is illuminated by the reflection of objects illuminated directly. I can leave the light virtually anywhere and not worry about it rolling off. During nightly trips to the bathroom, the low mode is great, not too bright to blind you and lose you nightvision when you turn it off, and plus, if you want to check for cockroaches, you can quickly blast 520 lumens in their nasty little eyes. Just be careful not to let them out of your sight, I’ve had a few scramble for darkness. In my other review of the nitefighter F30C, I posted my epic battles and skirmishes against these creepy crawlies if you ever want to learn a few tactics.

Outside, it has enough firepower to reach medium ranged distances. Don’t let the word “medium” fool you though. Each of its 520 lumens will illuminate anything effectively, in my most accurate-but-not-proven-yet-guess between 100-200 feet. So if something is coming towards you, you’ll see it plently far. And the beam is great as it doesn’t give “tunnel vision” as dedicated throwers, I know this is a nitpick for those that want to see everything in front of them.

Once again, Fenixoutfitters is a great place to purchase Fenix lights, IIRC, they also own the Fenix Store itself. They respond very quickly to emails. If you want to check it out: http://www.fenixoutfitters.com/

It has been a pleasure, and I am always eager to help out or respond to any questions you may have. Seriously, I won’t mind at all, don’t hesitate to post or send me a PM. I’m here to help and serve my fellow flashaholics.
Cheers, Alain
 
Last edited:

firelord777

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 11, 2010
Messages
931
Location
USA
Oops. Sorry about that, I'm using imgur, do you know by any chance how to make all the pics a bit smaller?

Thanks:)
 

kj2

Well-known member
Joined
May 22, 2010
Messages
8,053
Location
The Netherlands
Oops. Sorry about that, I'm using imgur, do you know by any chance how to make all the pics a bit smaller?

Thanks:)
I use tinypic when i upload photos. There, I can select on the webpage what size I want. Do not know, if this is possible on the forum directly. Maybe mod can help :)
 

regulation

Well-known member
Joined
May 18, 2011
Messages
163
Nice review and thanks for the hard work!!!
Got to say that I really like the Fenix AA flashlights! And now the most powerful 4AA flashlight!
 

Burgess

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Joined
Apr 10, 2006
Messages
6,376
Location
USA
Thank you for this VERY Detailed review !

:goodjob: :kewlpics:


Can this flashlight use Energizer L91 Lithium batteries ? ? ?


Is this specifically mentioned ?


:thanks:
_
 

InquisitiveInquirer

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 17, 2010
Messages
237
Excellent review firelord! I'm guessing you don't have a PA40 to compare the light to eh? I'm sure that's on everybody's mind. I've got a PA40 and i'm itching to get the LD41 mainly because of the UI. PA40 is perfect... except for the UI. It bugs me. How's the tint of the light from low to high? Is it different? Is it cool or neutral?
 

välineurheilija

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 29, 2011
Messages
674
Location
Finland
That looks like a light i would buy since i want a more powerfull aa light.i have a TK20 and a LD20 but this would suit my needs better :) thanks for the great review :bow:
 

Trevtrain

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Joined
Sep 28, 2011
Messages
407
Location
Melbourne, Australia
Oops. Sorry about that, I'm using imgur, do you know by any chance how to make all the pics a bit smaller?

Thanks:)

Hi firelord, your photos are great. It's nice to see someone who puts such time and effort into using a camera. Especially useful idea comparing the light to other known objects! Kudos. :twothumbs

In case you hadn't heard of it, Picasa (from Google) is a free and very user-friendly program for managing your images.
Among its many features is an option to "export" at whatever pixel dimensions you choose. I use it in my classes. Perhaps this will help.

Keep up the good work.
 

firelord777

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 11, 2010
Messages
931
Location
USA
Thank you for this VERY Detailed review !

:goodjob: :kewlpics:


Can this flashlight use Energizer L91 Lithium batteries ? ? ?


Is this specifically mentioned ?


:thanks:
_

Hey there,

Thanks for the compliments and you're very welcome:) regarding the L91s, you can. The only power source that is not allowed is the rechargeable lithiums, aka 14500, because their voltage is 3.7 according to the manual. The recommended ones are NIMH, but I guess L91s should be very good as well. I don't particularly have any, around here, they cost like $10 for 4 batteries:(

Cheers:)
 

firelord777

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 11, 2010
Messages
931
Location
USA
Excellent review firelord! I'm guessing you don't have a PA40 to compare the light to eh? I'm sure that's on everybody's mind. I've got a PA40 and i'm itching to get the LD41 mainly because of the UI. PA40 is perfect... except for the UI. It bugs me. How's the tint of the light from low to high? Is it different? Is it cool or neutral?

I don't have a PA40 unfortunately, as JetBeam never returned my emails:(

But the UI is awesome, quick to operate and easy as well. I don't think anyone will have a problem with it:)

The tint, on the low modes, I never noticed this, but having the light at my hand, I see some hint of greenish blue around the hotspot, but nothing major.

The rest of the beam and it's modes have cool tints, no neutral:)

Hope I answered your question, I guess I'm not to good describing tints LOL:)

Cheers
 

firelord777

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 11, 2010
Messages
931
Location
USA
Hi firelord, your photos are great. It's nice to see someone who puts such time and effort into using a camera. Especially useful idea comparing the light to other known objects! Kudos. :twothumbs

In case you hadn't heard of it, Picasa (from Google) is a free and very user-friendly program for managing your images.
Among its many features is an option to "export" at whatever pixel dimensions you choose. I use it in my classes. Perhaps this will help.

Keep up the good work.

Thanks a ton trevtrain, I'll be sure to go check it out:)
 
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