What is a truly robust survival flashlight

ma tumba

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There has been a lot of discussions regarding the concept of a bombproof light which would never fail. Which is more bombproof: HDS, Elzetta, Malkoff, etc.

In my opinion the most robust light should not have anything but a LED, body and batteries. Which means no driver and no switch.

So I am left with well potted 5mm LEDs, 2x AA/AAA cells and springless twisty.

I have experimented with some multiple 5mm yuji configurations to understand, what is the minimum number of the how LEDs I need in an edc light. Looks like 5 is quite sufficient. And an mcpcb with 5 5mm leds fits greatly an aleph mule head or maglite AA.

A z44 bezel can fit 12x 5mm leds or more, so a 6p with a zerorez tail and a short pill would, in my opinion be the king of bombpoofness.
 

peter yetman

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You can run something like an XP-L, Direct Drive off a low discharge Li Ion cell.
Or am I getting the wrong end of the stick?
I converted a SF Fury to Direct Drive and put a Z41 tail on it. Not much to go wrong there. Do say if I'm completely off base, but you seem to be a man after my own heart.
P
 

nbp

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What you are looking for are the lights from The Fraz. His lights have literally nothing to break. The most recent protos don't even have wires in the light engine and there is no circuitry.
 

StagMoose

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Sure, removing some components that have potential failure points (switch, electrical converters, PCBs...) and replacing them with simple more robust designs (direct drive, simple circuit twisty "switch," etc) should make things more reliable.

I guess it is all a balance between features that add to the ease of use/ effectiveness and pure reliability of just making light.

I guess define "Robust." Then is the added durability over what we currently have worth the cost in convenience or features? Probably a personal opinion/ decision.

Like the concept.
 

Fish 14

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I'd say MALKOFF md3 choose your head and drop in. Stay away from companies like streamlight they're garbage.
 

Lumen83

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For most of us, survival wouldn't mean bomb proof, anyway. Most of us aren't walking through mine fields at night. I'd trust Almost Any surefire, Elzetta, HDS, Malkoff, and a number of others to be one or both of my lights that I take into survival situations and I'd have zero doubts that I would be covered. What works for me is a headlamp and a basic 6P LED or G2X as a backup in case the headlamp craps out.
 

thermal guy

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Hds has WAY to much magic going on in them. Best to stick with a Malkoff. A tube a switch and a potted led. That's it. Each component can be swapped out in minutes if something goes wrong. Not true with others.
 

PoliceScannerMan

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Hds has WAY to much magic going on in them. Best to stick with a Malkoff. A tube a switch and a potted led. That's it. Each component can be swapped out in minutes if something goes wrong. Not true with others.

I have had a Malkoff drop in fail before, just quit working. Driver went kapoof, Gene replaced it of course. This was years ago. Anything that runs on a battery can fail. I've never had any issues out of my HDS's, I do not doubt they fail from time to time as well, although failure is rare for both brands. :shrug:
 

thermal guy

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Or now that I'm thinking about it how about peak? Most are twisty. No switch potted led no real driver I think. And there QTC is really non mechanical and you don't need it to be there to even work. But honestly any of the tough ones elzetta,Malkoff, SF 6P will be basically bomb proof.
 

nbp

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In my opinion the most robust light should not have anything but a LED, body and batteries. Which means no driver and no switch.

Yes, tons of super tough lights, but this is what the OP Indicated is his definition of maximally robust. If this is true, then Fraz lights are one of the only ones I can think of that truly fit this criteria. Machined body, twisty mechanism, emitter, QTC pill, battery. And the QTC is housed such that it will take hundreds or thousands of twists to wear it out, and can be replaced in about 30 seconds. My Fraz Lumenite seems indestructible.

Edit: Peak is a very good option as well. Fits criteria closely.
 

richbuff

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It is interesting that this topic has come up here and now, because last night, when I was supposed to be sleeping, I was wide awake thinking that I do not have anything in the HDS-LRI-Malkoff-McGizmo-Muyshondt-Okluma-Oveready-Peak-Pelicans-Prometheus-TexasLumens-TNC and Surefire and Zebralight class of flashlights yet, and that I would have to continue reading vast quantities of material to decide on which is "best" or simply open a new topic thread to ask which is "best" for me to start in this class of lights.
All of a sudden, here we are!
So, where does someone who is solidly and happily in the Fenix-Nitecore-Olight universe make his first move into the HDS-Malkoff-Zebralight universe, in search of the truly most robust survival light?
 

lion504

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What you are looking for are the lights from The Fraz. His lights have literally nothing to break. The most recent protos don't even have wires in the light engine and there is no circuitry.
+1. My thoughts exactly after reading the first post.
 

lion504

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So, where does someone who is solidly and happily in the Fenix-Nitecore-Olight universe make his first move into the HDS-Malkoff-Zebralight universe, in search of the truly most robust survival light?
I'm not familiar with ZL, but the main decision point for HDS vs Malkoff is whether you want configurability. Need multi-mode, strobes, on demand momentary and lock out, locator beacon, etc? If so, go HDS and pay more. If you're good with one mode (or two via hi/lo switch), go with Malkoff and pay less. I would recommend picking up a used HDS or Malkoff on the marketplace for a test drive.
 

nbp

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It is interesting that this topic has come up here and now, because last night, when I was supposed to be sleeping, I was wide awake thinking that I do not have anything in the HDS-LRI-Malkoff-McGizmo-Muyshondt-Okluma-Oveready-Peak-Pelicans-Prometheus-TexasLumens-TNC and Surefire and Zebralight class of flashlights yet, and that I would have to continue reading vast quantities of material to decide on which is "best" or simply open a new topic thread to ask which is "best" for me to start in this class of lights.
All of a sudden, here we are!
So, where does someone who is solidly and happily in the Fenix-Nitecore-Olight universe make his first move into the HDS-Malkoff-Zebralight universe, in search of the truly most robust survival light?

I would start a new thread with what features you want and your budget and we can definitely help you spend your money. Haha. Many of us have most or all of the brands you mentioned and can probably point out pros n cons of various makers given your specs.
 
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