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Thread: Flashlight to store in car

  1. #1

    Default Flashlight to store in car

    Looking for a flashlight to store in my car. I had a 4 sevens quark CR123-2 that I loved. Perfect size, and all around a great light. It was lost, and now I want to replace it. Something that size would be great. I'm looking for something with 18650's/CR123-2. I'm not opposed to AA-2, but I like the size of CR123-2 more than AA-2. I have a Foxilli headlamp in my car, so this flashlight will compliment that when I want some throw, and a bit more light.

    1) How would you prefer to purchase the light?
    ____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! :-)
    ____Up to $100.

    3) Format:
    ____I want a flashlight (hand held/self contained).

    4) Size:
    ____SMALL - Every day carry (4-7 inches).

    5) Emitter/Light source:
    ____LED (known for efficiency, longevity, and compactness)

    6) Manufacturer:
    ____I want to buy a light from a large/traditional manufacturer that is ready to go out of the box.

    7) What power source do you want to use?
    CR123/18650 probably preffered. AA/14500 is ok too. USB rechargable is an added bonus. If USB rechargable, it MUST have a removable battery, so I can replace it with a new battery if it is dead.

    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).
    600 lumens is probably good. It should have several modes.

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

    ____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.

    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)

    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.
    ____Very Important (Camping, Backpacking, Car Glove-box).

    12) Switch Size, Type, and location (choose all that apply):
    ____Any size switch will do.

    13) User Interface (UI) and mode selection. Select all that apply.
    ____I want multiple light levels. (Some lights have 5-16 light levels.)

    ____I don’t care.

    15) Water resistance
    ____IPX7 (Waterproof to 1 meter/30min)

    16) Storage conditions
    ____Automobile glove-box (wide temperature swings, long standby periods, critical reliability)

  2. #2
    Flashaholic colight's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    On Earth

    Default Re: Flashlight to store in car

    @tel, I've been a long-time fan of Fenix, and being the owner of a few of their products I can heartily recommend their UC35 V2.0 to you, which perfectly answers all of your requirements, and more. I have the PD35 V2.0 (picture below together with my UC02SS), but I was a little disappointed when the UC35 was released just days after I received my PD35. I would have preferred the UC35 myself, which is almost exactly the same light, except for the rechargeability. You can't go wrong with Fenix. Other people may have other suggestions, but this is my 5c worth.

    Link to UC35 V2.0 so you can have a look/see for yourself:

  3. #3
    Flashaholic* Poppy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Northern New Jersey

    Default Re: Flashlight to store in car

    I keep the rayovac 2AA indestructible with a RED traffic wand diffuser immediately handy in my car.
    It is loaded with Duracell NiMH batteries (they handle high heat differentials, almost as well as LiIon, and better than Alkaline)
    I keep a 4 pack of Energizer Primary Lithium cells as back-up.

    1. the light is inexpensive... if it is lost or stolen, or I give it away because someone needs it more than me, no big loss.
    2. the rubberized head helps to hold it onto the properly sized Red Diffuser
    3. The RED diffuser makes it more effective as a traffic safety wand. One can use it to ward off oncoming traffic from crashing into a vehicle that is blocking a lane of traffic. It becomes clearly important if the broken down vehicle is around a blind curve, or just below the crest of a hill. Making a scene safe is of paramount importance.
    4. the beam of the light is pretty focused, this is important if you are trying to look deep into the engine compartment, without being blinded by the glare of a broad beam, or too floody a light.

    I keep it in a bag attached to my ash tray, but it would fit in the glove compartment or in my door.

    I also have a full sized wand or two in my trunk but I might be a little over the top.
    My Grand Kids call me Poppy

  4. #4
    Flashaholic* Timothybil's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    The great state of Iowa

    Default Re: Flashlight to store in car

    The Nitecore EC11/EA11 cousins would work well. Single 16650 [EC11] or single AA/14500 [EA11]. To get the max out of the EA11 you will have to use a 14500. I have been carrying my EA11 for a couple years as my EDC, and it is reallly handy. Small enough you don't really notice it is there [doesn't apply in your case] but has the power. They also have a secondary red led for night vision or as a blinking beacon style light. MSRP is right at $60, so you should be able to find one for around $50. The Nitecore Store is based here in the US so if you need warranty work [not likely but who knows] it is easy to send to.
    Remember, Two is One, and One is None!.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Flashlight to store in car

    A suggestion to throw into the mix - Streamlight's 1L-1AA which runs on either 1 CR123A or a single AA and in a pinch will even run on AAA's with no adjustments or parts to swap out. This has a two way pocket clip so you can use it on a hat brim as a head lamp.

    For storage in a vehicle, I always use either L91 AA or L92 AAA Energizer lithium primary batteries or CR123's - these hold up to the extremes in temperature the best and have a extremely long shelf life and won't leak.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2018

    Default Re: Flashlight to store in car

    Another vote for the PD35 (or presumably the UC35, but like colight my PD35 has been in my car since before the UC version existed). Perfect car light (for me anyway), mix of long run time at lower outputs or reasonable usage at higher intensities, small enough to fit in door pockets, under seats, center console easily but not so small that it’s hard to find when needed. I’ve just used primaries in it as like you I typically have other sources of light for more routine usage so this is a backup.

  7. #7
    Flashaholic 59ride's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2014

    Default Re: Flashlight to store in car

    i keep this in my car, its a beast

  8. #8

    Default Re: Flashlight to store in car

    For the car personally I am a fan of anything I can feed Energizer Lithium. Typically I'm rarely using the light and it's being subjected to all sorts of temperature fluctuations throughout the year, from below freezing to well over 100 degrees inside the car.

    Also, theft is a concern as well so I try to keep as little as possible inside other than roadside repair type gear.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    North Carolina

    Default Re: Flashlight to store in car

    The Jetbeam E20R has been a great small vehicle light for me. USB rechargeable single 16340 size light that puts out 900 lumens. I keep it plugged in my center console to charge on the go. Always ready when I need it. Magnetic tail cap is a big plus too.

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