Help me narrow my choices please!

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I work for the Federal Government in Canada and have been tasked to research out the best light source for use by our ER Teams(emergency response). There are way too many flashlights/lanterns on the market and my brain feels like it is going to explode soon. My situation is that I need flashlights for approximately 50 people, most of whom sit at a desk all day and are lucky to know which end of the light to point away from their body, so the lights have to be easy to use. Due to the large number of units needed they cant be too expensive $50-100 tops. They will be used primarily in fire emergencies or other disasters where there has been a loss of all power, so they must have a solid flood beam as well as a good tight spot beam. They also need to be very durable, as I expect them to get dropped alot and moderately water resistant(it rains alot in my city). Perhaps someone can tell me whether I would be better off with a rechargeable unit or straight battery operation. Basically any reccomendations that you all can give me would be greatly appreciated, and unless some of you are canadian citizens it wont be your tax dollars paying for it(ha ha).
Thank you
 

recercare

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I suggest Streamlight Vulcan or Litebox. They are designed for rescue or fireworkers.

Litebox has both the spot and flood beam, and you can switch between 8W (8 hours run time) and 20W (3.5 hours run time). It's quite heavy though. (7.4 pounds).

Vulcan is smaller with 3W (9 hours run time) and 8W (3.1 hours). It has a spot beam only. The weight is 3.3 pounds.

Both Litebox and Vulcan are rechargeable, which is an advantage. It's economical and gives plenty of power. I think they have chosen the right type as well. The sealed lead acid battery is heavy and the number of recharges/cycles is limited. However, it's by far the most inexpensive battery, and perhaps also the most robust considering it's almost maintenance free with a very high tolerance to overcharging. The selfdischarge-rate is minimum as well.

There're 2 things to remember though:
1.Never let such a battery be left in a discharged state. When you've used it, even though just for a short moment, recharge it!
2.The performance is not very good at temperatures lower than -10C
 
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Your post seems contradictory... You want a great flashlight for an emergency response team but then you say that most of these people sit at a desk all day and you dont even trust them to point a flashlight? The lite box is a great flashlight but it is kind of on the edge of your price range. Sounds like these desk folks dont need something of the calibur of the lite box...
 
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I'd recommend the Streamlight Stinger - most of the cops and many fire fighters use them.

15,000 candle power comes with AC & DC chargers. Can sit in the charger fulltime on standby without harming the unit.

Anodized alumiunum and beam can be focused from wide angle to spot. I've owned one for 3 yrs. with no problems and the same batery still works fine!

grin.gif
 

Brock

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I just did this for our local "officials" and recommended the UKE 2L. It has the long shelf life being lithium powered. Completly waterproof, and small enough to not be a bother to carry of keep in odd places. The other lights mentioned are nice, but require more maintanice and are much more $. The UKE 2L runs about 3 hours on one set of lithiums. Again you can get one throw it in a drawer and it will work in 5 years when you pull it out. The only problem I have with the 2L is the beam, it isn't the greatest, but better then most other (consumer) lights.
 
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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by stp3217:
My situation is that I need flashlights for approximately 50 people, most of whom sit at a desk all day
Due to the large number of units needed they cant be too expensive $50-100 tops. They will be used primarily in fire emergencies or other disasters where there has been a loss of all power, so they must have a solid flood beam as well as a good tight spot beam. They also need to be very durable, as I expect them to get dropped alot and moderately water resistant(it rains alot in my city). Perhaps someone can tell me whether I would be better off with a rechargeable unit or straight battery operation.
Thank you[/QB]<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

My two-cents worth based on practical experience:
Based on your requirements I would recommend a waterproof alkaline battery flashlight. I am assuming these lights are to be issued to each person so they have to be small enough to carry.

If the lights are not going to be used on a regular basis forget the rechargeables. Besides, they run out too quickly without a plan to repower them. (Did you know that within the first hours of the Oklahoma City bombing all of the emergency personnels rechargable flashlights were out? Finally they had to issue battery operated ones to the personnel at the scene in order for them to continue.)

Something like waterproof Pelicans or Streamlights that can be supported in the field with just a resupply of fresh batteries would be best if they plan to get no use other than for an emergency event. Many of the fire departments personnel are now carrying these types of lights.

I always carry a waterproof 2 or 3 C-cell Pelican or Streamlight for wet power out conditions. I work as a Law Enforcement officer and have found that when your rechargable goes out and you still have to stay out at a scene with no power these types of lights can always be relied upon. I also use them on rainy nights in lieu of my rechargeable.

If you want something bigger like the lightbox type you could get the Pelican 8 D-cell or 4 D-cell lanterns. One of those models even comes with a redundant backup switch and bulb within the unit if you dropped it and broke one or one burned out. They burn for hours very brightly.

The UKE 2L is great. I have several but the cost of the batteries large scale would be expensive compared to alkalines and they are non-standard at most stores relatively speaking compared to AA, C, or D cell batteries. If your people had to raid the local Drug store/Grocery store for AA, C, or D cell batteries or get them from local residents they would still be able to use there lights.

I too like the UKE 2L for BACKUP emergency lights that can be carried in medical kits, car gloveboxes, backpacks, or as personal light. I don't think that I would recommend them for your requirements though when much more inexpensive variants would do.
 

WaltH

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I have to agree whole-heartedly with Brock's advice. The UK2L is a wise choice. Very good light output, relatively long run time for a 2L light, completely user-friendly, great shelf-life, and waterproof. Not to mention available in bright yellow so it's easy to locate in a drawer or glovebox.
 

Gandalf

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Here's my 2 cents worth: 3D cell Maglites, and a supply of alkaline batteries. They are relatively inexpensive, have a long burn time ( I forget just how long, sorry...), come with 2 lamps, one in tailcap, and they are fairly tough and very water resistant.
Not very high tech, but they also have an adjustable soit to flood beam. 50,000 LEO's can't be wrong....

If you want to go a bit higher tech, and much smaller, look at the Underwater Kinetics
4AA light. it uses the same lamp as the lithium UK 2L, but uses 4 AA batteries. Burn time is 4 to 6 hours, and it quite bright. It's waterproof (scuba rated) And it's not too expensive. It comes in yellow, also.
Check out this website: www.brightguy.com

they stock a huge assortment of flashlights, and prices are usually good. Sometimes you can find a better price if you do a search, but customer service is *so good* from brightguy.com, and they stock spare lamps for virtually every flashlight they carry. They are very good to do business with; call their 800 number (on the website) and ask for Greg. Ask about a volume discount; odds are, on 50 units, you can save quite a lot.
 

kb0rrg

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Jan 12, 2001
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Renton, Wa
Look at the:

3D mag
uke 2L
PrincetonTec 4AA
Streamlight 4AA
Streamlight 3C

Don't forget headlamps...
Petzel zoom or mega
some good ones my Princeton tec
 

BuddTX

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Nov 27, 2001
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Houston, TX
I would consider the LSI (purchased recently by Koehler-Bright Star) rechargable lanterns.

I recently had a complete power outage that lasted for about a week at the hospital that I worked at, and this is the light that I wish I had had then. It offers a combination of a lot of light, combined with a long battery life:
http://www.lsispotlights.com/s_r.htm

500,000 Candle Power
model SR-2000
Operates continuously for up to 3-1/2 hours!
The #SR-2000-09 Halogen/Xenon bulb specs out at 6 volts, 3.3 amps, 20 watts, with a life expectancy of 100 hours.

150,000 Candle Power
model SR-2005
Operates continuously for up to 8 hours!
The #SR-2005-09 Halogen/Xenon bulb specs out at 6 volts, 1.5 amps, 10 watts, with a life expectancy of 150 hours.

50,000 - 150,000 Candle Power
model SR-2010
Operates 8 hours on High - 150,000 C.P.
Operates 12 hours on Low - 50,000 C.P.
Operates 15 hours on Flash - 50,000 C.P.
The #SR-2010-09 Halogen/Xenon bulb specs out at 6 volts, 1.5 amps, 10 watts, with a life expectancy of 150 hours.
 

Brock

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Messages
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Location
Green Bay, WI USA
The reason I wouldn't recommend an alkaline light is the batteries need to be changed every other year or so, while lithium lights (UKE 2L) can go 5 years easily. Also lithium lights can be used in ANY temperature, while alkaline lights start to poop out about 0 C. If you factor in the cost of replacing the batteries ever other year in an alkaline light, the lithium lights are cheaper. Rechargeables are OK if they are used regularly, but if left sitting, the batteries don't last long, (even on the charger) rechargeables like to be used. Has anyone ever seen a lithium battery leak? I haven't and I use them a lot. I have seen many alkaline batteries leak, even not dead ones.

Bottom line to me though is they are reliable lights, I have used them Scuba diving for years, and have only had 1 lamp blow out. I keep them in our emergency kit and in both cars, and recommend them to friends and family. Well family got them as x-mas gifts already
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**DONOTDELETE**

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WOW!!! you people are fantastic.
This has really helped me sort through the chaff to find the wheat(so to speak). I can now confidently recommend a selection of lights for our ert people. Not that I was being contradictory earlier, I just wanted to stress that these were people who have had formal training but will not see alot of day to day use with their equipment, so I wanted it to be as "dummy proof as possible". Again a big thanks to all of you and I hope everyone has a merry christmas.
 

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