Need Recommendation for a multi purpose rechargeable flashlight for home

mdalby

New member
Joined
Jan 13, 2013
Messages
3
I need a light that I can have stored in my garage or mud room that is plugged in and ready for use. I am tired of having unreliable flashlights that break or batteries are down.


I used to have a Streamlight FireBox flashlight and I really liked it. This is the type of setup that I am thinking of getting. Just checkign with the experts to see if there is a better comparable option.


I have some punks in my neighborhood that have decided it is fun to bust through my fence in my back yard. It looks like they just run a shoulder into the fence and bust down the panels.


I have now installed a camera but the view is not the best. Anyways, I want to make sure I have a good flashlight when needed.


Thank you for any help.






1) How would you prefer to purchase the light?


____I would like to purchase the light in person from a brick and mortar store. I am located in ______________.
__X__This will be mail-order or Online (location doesn't matter).




2) Budget: An easy question, but you may change your mind after answering the rest! :)


____I don't know yet
____Up to $25.
____Up to $50.
____Up to $100.
__X__Up to $200.
____Up to $300.
____Essentially unlimited.




3) Format:


__X__I am not sure, please help me decide.
__X__I want a flashlight (hand held/self contained).
____I want a self-contained headlamp.
____I want a headlamp with an external pack/power source.
____I want a mounted light (typically for a bicycle or vehicle)
__X__I want a lantern/area light.
____I want a portable spotlight (it may have an external power source).
____Other ____________________________________________




4) Size:


____MICRO - Keychain size.
____TINY - Every day carry (2-4 inches).
____SMALL - Every day carry (4-7 inches).
__X__MEDIUM - Holster/belt ring carry. (>7 inches)
__X__LARGE - Big enough to need its own travel case.
____I don’t know/I don't care.




5) Emitter/Light source:


____LED (known for efficiency, longevity, and compactness)
____Incandescent (known for superior color rendition)
____HID (known for max output, but often at the expense of size)
__X__I don't know.




6) Manufacturer:


__X__I want to buy a light from a large/traditional manufacturer that is ready to go out of the box.
__X__I would like a light from a specialty manufacturer (Possibly limited run/Custom).
____I am interested in assembling my own components. (for example a “host” or flashlight body from one manufacturer, and a “drop-in” emitter from another source).




7) What power source do you want to use?


____I intend to use "Primary"/Disposable Alkaline batteries based on the usual AAA/AA/C/D sized cells common to most stores.
____I intend to use "Primary"/Disposable Lithium batteries based on the usual AAA/AA/C/D and CR123 sized cells common to most stores (often a cold weather or long storage choice).
____I intend to use Rechargeable cells (NiMH or NiCD) based on the usual AAA/AA/C/D sized cells common to most stores.
____I intend to use Rechargeable cells based on less common formats (18500 or 18650 Li-Ion, RCR123, et-al).
__X__I want a light with an integrated rechargeable battery pack.
____I don't know/I need more information on power sources.


7a) If you have selected a rechargeable option
____I want a light that plugs directly into the wall (literally with prongs built into the light)
____I want a light that has a recharging adapter (your typical "wall wart")
__X__I want a light that snaps into a cradle (usually mounted on a wall)
____I want a separate/stand-alone charger (this involves removing the batteries to charge)
____I don't care




8) How much genuine out the front (OTF) light do you want/need? Sometimes you can have too much light (trying to read up close up with a 100 lumen light is not a happy experience).


____I want to navigate a dark room or read a map (1-10 lumens).
____I want an indoor "blackout" light (15-50 lumens)
__X__I want to confidently walk around an unlit/unpaved rural area (60-150 lumens).
__X__I want to illuminate my entire backyard or a campsite (150-300 lumens).
____I want to illuminate an entire field, the neighbor's front yard several houses down, impress my friends and neighbors, etc. (300-700 lumens).
____I want search and rescue type illumination (800+ lumens).


____SPECIAL NOTE: Burst/Turbo mode Category - There are several lights that will run at a super bright maximum for a very limited period (usually 5-10 minutes) and then will "step-down" to a lower level for thermal control. Check here if this is acceptable.




9) Flood vs Throw: Flood covers an area, Throw reaches out to a distance.


____All Flood: I am doing "arms length" tasks like reading and campsite cooking.
____Wide Flood: I want a defined flood area for semi-close tasks like after-dark campsite tasks or working on a car.
____Narrow Flood: I want a sharply defined flood area that will project some distance for tasks like trail walking.
__X__Wide Throw: I want a beam with a noticeable hot-center for distance throw and a significant amount of "side-spill". Good for rough trail hiking, search and rescue, and general distance work.
____Narrow Throw: I want a beam with a very tight "hot center" and minimal "side-spill". Good for distance viewing, fog, and looking through dense undergrowth.
____Turbohead: I want a far-distance projector with a sharply focused spot of light and minimal or zero side-spill. Good for extreme distance and impressing your friends.


9a) Distance: How far away will you typically need to see with this light (check all that apply)
____Less than 1 yard/meter (reading, other close work)
____Less than 5 yards/meters (looking for something inside a dark shed/garage/basement)
____5-20 yards/meters (check out a noise in the backyard)
__X__30-50 yards/meters (I have a big backyard)
____50-150 yards/meters (I live in a very rural area/farm with wide open spaces)
____150+ yards (I am searching from a helicopter)


10) Runtime: Not over-inflated manufacturer runtime claims, but usable brightness measured from first activation to 50% with new batteries (Measured on maximum continuous output).


____Up to 30 minutes (I want the brightest [and potentially smallest] light for brief periods)
____30-60 minutes (I have plenty of batteries just ready to be changed)
__X__90-120 minutes (Runtime is moderately important, but still not critical)
____3 hours + (I critically need this light to run on max for extended periods in between battery changes/charges).








11) Durability/Usage: Generally the old phrase “you get what you pay for” is very accurate for flashlights.


____Not Important (A “night-stand” light).
____Slightly Important (Walks around the neighborhood).
__X__Very Important (Camping, Backpacking, Car Glove-box).
____Critical (Police, Fire, Search & Rescue, Caving, Survival).
____I don’t know.




12) Switch Size, Type, and location (choose all that apply):


__X__Any size switch will do.
____I need a BIG switch (I'll be using gloves or have very large hands or coordination issues).
____I want a forward clicky (Helpful for momentary activation and signaling).
____I want a reverse clicky (For use with multi-mode/level lights).
____I want a momentary switch (Predominantly for use with signaling and short bursts of momentary light only).
____I want a twisty switch (Tighten the head/tailcap to activate, and the light will stay on until the head/tailcap is loosened).
____I want a body mounted switch (near the head, like on a Maglite).
____I want a tail mounted switch (found on the majority of today’s high end lights).
____I want a remote switch (usually found on high-end bicycle headlights)
____I don't care.
____I don’t know.
____Other, please specify____________________.




13) User Interface (UI) and mode selection. Select all that apply.


____A simple on-off with only one output level is fine for me.
__X__I want 2 light levels. (Brighter/short runtime and Dimmer/long runtime.)
____I want multiple light levels. (Some lights have 5-16 light levels.)
____I want a programmable light.
____I want a selector ring.
____I want a strobe mode. (Oscillating pattern to confuse/blind aka "Police Mode")
____I want SOS mode. (blinks in ...---... emergency pattern)
____I want a beacon mode. (Regular flashes at full power to show location.)
____I don’t care.
____I don’t know.




14)Material/Finish/Coating


____Plastic/composite body (this may limit your choices significantly).
____Anodized Aluminum – either type II or III (Hard Anodized) (Aluminum, specifically HA, is the most common material/finish for today’s higher end flashlights).
____Stainless steel (durable, but much heavier than aluminum)
____Titanium (durable and nearly as lightweight as aluminum, but can be moderately to significantly more expensive).
____I don’t care.
____I don’t know.
__X__Other, please specify__I want a durable body. I don't want to make this purchase again. Buy right, buy once.__________.


15) Water resistance
____None needed
__X__IPX4 (Splash resistant)
____IPX7 (Waterproof to 1 meter/30min)
____IPX8 (Submersible to greater than 1 meter for 4 hours)


16) Storage conditions
__X__In house (temperature/climate controlled environment)
__X__Emergency kit (long standby periods)
____Automobile glove-box (wide temperature swings, long standby periods, critical reliability)
____Other_________________________________________ ____




17) Special Needs/extras: Is there anything else you want or need that hasn't been mentioned? Select any/all below.


____Red filter (for preserving night vision).
____Other filter colors (Amber, Green, Blue, _________).
____Dedicated R/G/B secondary LEDs.
____“Hybrid” light (bright incandescent combined with long running LEDs)
____Pocket/belt clip
____Holster
____Wrist/Neck Lanyard
____Crenulated bezel
____Non-sparking, Intrinsically Safe (IS) for use in explosive environments
 

aznsx

Well-known member
CPF Supporter
Joined
Apr 24, 2015
Messages
189
Location
Phoenix, AZ USA
Just something to consider here. I won't try to break down every aspect of whether or not it's completely appropriate for all your specific needs, especially since it's rather different from the lantern type solution approach of the Firebox (which is likely a very good but fairly specialized product), but I believe in a similar situation / application my Streamlight Stinger 2020 might be a top choice for me personally. I'm liking it very much so far, and I believe it would be happy living in the compatible charging cradle, ready to go, long term. Again, just something else for you to take a look at, and since it's fairly new you might not be aware of it as an option. It would offer significant advantages over (for example) the Firebox/lantern approach in terms of handling and ease of use, and may also meet your performance requirements.
 

TheDCC

Member
CPF Supporter
Joined
May 26, 2021
Messages
18
Location
PNW
The Four Sevens Maelstrom "STANDBY" is Awesome and always ready. May need to sign up for inventory notifications @ darksucks.com
It is by far my new favorite household light (and more).
 

caelyx

Well-known member
CPF Supporter
Joined
May 29, 2013
Messages
97
I have a Streamlight Strion DS mounted on one wall continuously charging, and a Streamlight Vulcan 180 (similar to the old FireBox) on another. They're both great in that role, and I'm really happy with them.
 

Polarion-Sparetech2

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 27, 2015
Messages
103
You may consider LED angle lights from Polarion. Designed for firefighters, they have a solid charging cradle, nylon housing, water proof, dual mode etc. It's a professional product so a bit more expensive but well worth.
 

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