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Bigfabdaddy

Newly Enlightened
Joined
May 11, 2014
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==================Flashlight Recommendation

Error in posting.
 
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Bigfabdaddy

Newly Enlightened
Joined
May 11, 2014
Messages
3
Very sorry about the formatting problems with my first post. I will have to remember not to use tapatalk when copy and pasting. Hopefully this time this works.
==================Flashlight Recommendation Checklist================


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 ______________.
__+__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.
__+__Up to $200.
____Up to $300.
____Essentially unlimited.


3) Format:

__+__I am not sure, please help me decide.
____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)
____I want a lantern/area light.
____I want a portable spotlight (it may have an external power source).
__+__Other I am in the market to replace each of my current headlamps, flashlights, and spot light.


4) Size:

____MICRO - Keychain size.
____TINY - Every day carry (2-4 inches).
____SMALL - Every day carry (4-7 inches).
____MEDIUM - Holster/belt ring carry. (>7 inches)
____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)
__+__I don't know.


6) Manufacturer:

__+__I want to buy a light from a large/traditional manufacturer that is ready to go out of the box.
____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).
____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")
____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)
__+__I want to confidently walk around an unlit/unpaved rural area (60-150 lumens).
____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.
__+__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)
__+__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)
__+__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).
__+__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):

____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 I would like to find something with both a side switch and tail switch that can be used with gloves.


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

____A simple on-off with only one output level is fine for me.
____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.
____Other, please specify____________.

15) Water resistance
____None needed
____IPX4 (Splash resistant)
____IPX7 (Waterproof to 1 meter/30min)
__+__IPX8 (Submersible to greater than 1 meter for 4 hours)

16) Storage conditions
____In house (temperature/climate controlled environment)
____Emergency kit (long standby periods)
____Automobile glove-box (wide temperature swings, long standby periods, critical reliability)
__+__Other 72HR SAR kit.


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, GREEN).
__+__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

Hello all, I am very new to the world of flashlights. I have been using them for years but thought a light was a light was a light until I found this Forum. I have been surfing around this forum for a long time before registering to try and learn all I can but I fear all I have done is confuse myself even more. I am looking for a few different lights so I will be making more than one of these checklists. I hope it is ok that I put them all on one spot. I have a few different needs for lights. I am looking for one to add to my SAR kit since the headlamp I had been using has died. (Not sure why. Before anyone asks I tried new bulbs and batteries in it. It was a cheaper headlight that was given to me.) I would like to have a dedicated headlamp, "flashlight", and "spotlight" for those times when I am out in the field. I have a few different extra headlamps right now they are all bright but none of them have a red or green filter to preserve night vision. They all have multi brightness settings, but none go low enough to not ruin night vision. Next I am looking for a Flashlight that can be used in SAR work with a distance of 30-50 meters with a medium field. I would also like to replace the old spot light that I am using. My only criteria for the spot light are a huge field with throw out to say 100 yards, and a shoulder strap if it is heavy. The longer the runtime on all three of these lights the better. My only problem will be price I listed up to $200 but would like to spend less than $400 on all 3 lights.
I am also in the market for a small EDC light but I will make another post about that one.
 

Poppy

Flashaholic
Joined
Dec 20, 2012
Messages
8,310
Location
Northern New Jersey
Next I am looking for a Flashlight that can be used in SAR work with a distance of 30-50 meters with a medium field. I would also like to replace the old spot light that I am using. My only criteria for the spot light are a huge field with throw out to say 100 yards, and a shoulder strap if it is heavy. The longer the runtime on all three of these lights the better. My only problem will be price I listed up to $200 but would like to spend less than $400 on all 3 lights.
I am also in the market for a small EDC light but I will make another post about that one.

I would like to suggest the Fenix TK35 or the TK35 UE.

The difference in the beam is that the TK35 is not as wide but it will throw farther. The UE version can put out more light in a more floody pattern. Which ever you choose, I believe that either light can serve both of your flashlight requirements.
 

Nightflash

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Apr 6, 2014
Messages
64
Hi and welcome. This will be nice to discover and own some really good new flashlights. To keep it simple I would suggest getting an eneloop charger and 4 (8) Eneloop batteries for all AA purposes as well as a basic but good 18650 battery charger (mine is from Cytac) with 4 x 3.100 mah 18650 quality batteries (+-$34 or more for 2).

Light recommendation would be the Olight S20 baton 1x18650: one of the smallest sized 18650 You can get, tailstand ability, magnetic tailcap to attach to things, well spaced modes and runtimes, moonlight mode and a good medium and max. What I think You might also like about it, it´s attachable to a baseball cap and You have Your hands free

IMG800x_1005.jpg


The already recommended TK35 allrounder with wow-effect max and this is an alltime favourite for general purposes (prefer this older version pricewise) 2x18650 fantastic runtimes and well spaced modes

IMG800x_1000.jpg


Another one to get with a fantastic price and 1050 lumens max and true moonlight for 1x18650 battery is the Thrunite TN12/2014, unbeatable for the quality/price relationship;

Than for 2xAA batteries I do like the 2-mode Klarus P2A or the Sunwayman V20c (infinite variable brightness with magnetic controlring) both are available for very good prices meanwhile and are sturdy, reliable lights.

For 1xAA I would throw in a Fenix MC10 Anglelight which is good for attaching to the belt and practical to always have around with it´s tilt-head.
As a headlight it will have to be a Zebralight.
 

Bigfabdaddy

Newly Enlightened
Joined
May 11, 2014
Messages
3
Thank you everyone for you recommendations and warm welcomes. I plan to order the TK35 UE with 4x 18650's, charger, and 4x CR123's. I also love the look of the Olight S20, I like the idea of most of my lights taking the same batteries for simplicity. I like the S20 having the clip for on a ball cap to be a back up head lamp.
 
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