Lights

NightStick TWM-850XL Weapon mounted light

  NightStick lighting products are fairly new at weapon mounted lights. Don’t let that fool you, these lights are robust and powerful. Nightstick is a division of Bayco products, who have been doing portable lighting products for over 30 years. I saw them at SHOT 2018 and they were gracious enough to send out one of their new TWM-850XL weapon mounted lights for review.

 The TWM-850XL is a full size light. Not the mini’s that are made to fit the smaller handguns. Being that it is full size, it is a comparable size to the common TLR-1 HL. So much so, that many holsters made for a pistol with the TLR-1 will fit the Nightstick. The TWM-850XL does not have the strobe option, but they do make the same light with a strobe option.

 Let’s get into what makes the Nightstick weapon light shine. As with pretty much all high output lights, it uses a CREE LED rated at 850 lumens and 15000 candela. Bright enough to go 245 meters, or so they say. But identifying something at that distance is not something I would try. The house at the end of the street, about 125 yds away, probably hates me now. Even with street lights on, the 850XL did a decent job of lighting up their house. Could I identify someone? No, but make out figures and trees, yes. As with most lights, they appear to work better at distance without much ambient light. In the pictures you can see the spill pattern to some extent and also how the different distances affect detail.The light wasn’t on a firearm when I shined it down the street or at the shady person on the side of the road.

Approximately 75yds Dark

Approximately 75yds. This also does a decent job of showing the beam pattern

Approximately 25yds

Approximately 50yds

Approximately 35yds

 Nightstick did a pretty good job putting in lots of useable features. The first one that comes to mind is their switch mechanism. The switches are made from a glass filled nylon to give them strength and are ambidextrous. Probably my favorite feature, is how the switches operate. Pushing down on either side operates the momentary on. Yes, down on either side, unlike the TLR-1. Pushing up on either side turns the light on. To turn the light off, just push down on either side of the switches and it turns off. When turning the light from constant on to off, It will go to momentary on the opposite side from which it was flipped to on, then just let up and it is off. If you switch it off on the side that it was turned to “on”, it will go to the off position. I found that, in this case, the switch just passed off and went to momentary also. Not a big deal, just something to mention. Once I got use to the way the switching worked, I really liked it.

 I’ll try not to bore you to death with the specifications, because most are listed below. The 850XL does use a hardcoat anodized aluminum housing. For now, it is only available in black. It is water resistant. It also uses 2 of the CR123 batteries, which are supplied. One must take the light off of a handgun to replace the batteries. If you have it mounted on a rifle, it is possible to replace them with the light still mounted. The battery door flips down once the screw is loosened that holds it on. The lens is made out of polycarbonate, the same material many safety glasses are made from. Nightstick also adds an anti scratch coating to the lens. Battery life is specified at 1.75 hrs. After about 1.5 hrs, the output started dying off for me. Yes, it does get hot if left on. Each weapon light is also has its own serial number.

 When mounting to a pistol, or rifle, the 850-XL came with 2 cross rail inserts. These cross rails allow the user to mount the light on different types of rails. On the top of the light, where it mounts to a rail, are 4 tiny slots. The slots are used to position the light onto the rail by installing 1 or both of the cross rail inserts. Depending on who’s rail you are using. I just held the light up to the rail and lined it up with the appropriate cross rail slot. The instruction tell you what handgun to use with what slot, but that’s no fun. I put a tiny amount of threadlocker on the screws holding the cross rail in, just for added protection.

 I have tried the 850XL on a few firearms. Typically I use it on my Polymer80 compact. The light does extend out about an inch past the muzzle. But I have had zero problems with it at all. I did mount it on an AR to try out. It wasn’t as weird as one might think. I just put my support hand right behind it and was able to operate the light with my thumb. I didn’t put many rounds downrange with the light mounted on the rifle, but I did run around the house with it mounted up. Nightstick does make a rifle version that uses a push button end cap.

 I think it is good to have another weapon mounted light in the market. The Nightstick TWM-850XL has worked well for me. I think it is on par with the TLR-1. The quality is nice, it won’t break the bank, and it’s bright. Go take a look at the Nightstick line, they might have something worth using.

 

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame:

High output weapon mounted light

Target Market:

Those wanting a high output weapon mounted light

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • 850 Lumens

  • 15000 Candela

  • 2 m drop rating

  • IP-X7 Waterproof (1m for 30 min)

  • Flashlight Runtime: 1.75 hours

  • Length: 3.75 in (95 mm)

  • Width: 1.5 in (38 mm)

  • Depth: 1.5 in (38 mm)

  • Weight: 5.4 oz (155 g)

  • Head Diameter: 1.2 in (30 mm)

  • Ambidextrous toggle switch

  • Momentary or constant-on flashlight

  • Aircraft-grade 6061-T6 aluminum housing

  • Glass-filled nylon polymer toggle switch

  • Type III hard anodized finish

  • Beam distance rated at 245 meters

  • Impact & chemical resistant

  • Serialized for personal identification

  • 2 CR123 batteries (included)

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?

With Strobe option

What others are saying:

Chris K. at Bayco Products: 5/5 stars
Absolutely AWESOME FELLAS!

  This thing feels SOLID as a rock, and the light output is INSANE...I can see why Police/First Responders would use this - because the controls are ingenious and easy, and the amount of "light 'em up" it produces is, well, GREAT!!! 

When I'm out with my dog at night, I've got this on my M&P Pro 9mm and if a coyote pack is lurking, simply point and hit the light and it's almost like a car's headlight on high!

  Thanks for making an excellent product! ABSOLUTELY WORTH $100 - NO DOUBT! I now want this in a flashlight form, and the light for my long guns! 100% endorse - get this bad boy if you do ANYTHING REQUIRING LIGHTING AND GUNS!!

Link to other reviews:

Ammoland TWM-850XLS review

Price point:

MSRP = $150.96

Retail = $85.87 on Amazon

I need it now! Availability:

Amazon 

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Bright

  • TLR-1 size

  • Adjustable cross rail inserts

Cons:

  • Must take off to replace batteries

  • Size

Score: 8.00 Great

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Favorite Link:   Polymer 80

VLTOR SM-O QD Offset Scout Mount

This VLTOR flashlight QD mount goes by SM-O: Scout Mount Offset

Here at the Firearms Insider, we've reviewed a lot of rifle accessories. I've seen my fair share of flashlight mounts, in polymers and pot metals alike. Like flashlights themselves, the options for mounting solutions that exist in the firearms market come in all shapes and sizes.... with lots of terrible, cheap and faulty options on the market. Lucky for you, I was in the market for a quality "cry once, buy once" light mount about a year ago, and have only positive results to report back. 

In picking up quite a few "modern sporting rifles" as well as pistols and a scattergun or two, I was in the market for a quality mount that had a quick detach function so my light could jump from weapon to weapon as I see fit. What I landed on was the VLTOR SM-O: Scout Mount Offset QD. The VLTOR SM-O comes in a QD cam lever version, which is made by American Defense. If you are looking for rock QD solid mount that will hold up on all weapon platforms - from rifles and carbines to even the jarring recoil of the shotgun, ADM makes some fantastic mounts. In my experience with buying cheap mounts and then later replacing them with better quality versions, almost everything made by American Defense straight up rocks! Seeing this mount was a combined effort between VLTOR and ADM was almost reason enough to give it a shot.

The SM-O is unique in that it's clamping mechanism simultaneously grips the picatinny rail AND tightens the one piece ring around the light. When adjusted correctly to your light's body diameter, it secures the light when the cam locks down, but easily releases the light when the cam is unlocked, allowing for easy adjustment for your ergonomics.

The headline act of VLTOR SM-O is its QD mount. Easy to remove, easy to reverse for your rifle.

Adjusting the SM-O for your specific light does require some light tinkering. This is the only time a tool is ever really needed. Basically you need to adjust a bolthead when the light is removed, then try inserting the flashlight into the ring body, and throw the QD lever to check for difficulty and resistance. Too hard to throw completely 180 degrees and you'll need to unlock the cam and remove the flashlight to loosen the fit. Too loose and your light can spin in the ring body and the cam won't snug that rail like it should. Its a bit of a back and forth dance to find the proper balance of secure fit, but once you find it, its clear sailing.

I've been primarily mounting a pair of SureFire G2X Pro lights on just about every railed part I own over the last year, from AR-15 handguards, AK-47 forends, Tavor MLOK rails, shotgun barrel clamps, and even tactical scope rings. The SM-O worked on everything, and the tension never loosened from my initial configuration no matter how many times I played musical picatinny rail with this thing. Removal and replacement can be done in seconds, and with just one single hand. If the offset is putting the light too high or low for your liking, just invert it and reverse the flashlight. No one will call you out on the VLTOR logo being upside down.

Got tactical scope rings? The SM-O makes for a great optic mounted light for nighttime shooting without interfering with scope turrets. 

Even if you don't have a tactical plinker decked out in all the bells and whistles, this simple mount is quite handy for the varmint hunter as well. Mounted on a railed scope ring cap or tactical accessory scope ring, this mount provides a perfect offset light that will hold up to whatever you can throw at it. And if you find yourself needing and handheld light for not shooting purposes, you've got one in seconds.

All in all, this product leaves me conflicted. I wish I could afford more of these for each one of my modern sporting rifles. Then again, I don't need to because of how easy it can jump from gun to gun. So until this one blows up or grows legs and runs away, the SM-O will always have a home in my arsenal.

Firearms Insider Reviews – 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: The Offset Scout Mount is manufactured in conjunction with American Defense Manufacturing, and is a fully ambidextrous, offset light mount available with either conventional thumb screw mounting or throw-lever quick disconnect.

Target Market:  Civilians and Professionals with railed rifles or carbines

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Either thumb screws or throw lever mounting
  • Made from 6061 T6 aluminum
  • Hard coat anodized
  • Adjustable tension
  • Minimal / Low Profile 

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: Black Only

What others are saying?: "I've tried a lot of light mounts over the years. This is by far the best. The unique mechanism of the American Defense cam lever is easier on rails that the LaRue mount, making this mount better in my opinion, and less expensive. The cam makes for a secure mount that will not loosen like thumb screws, and because of the large bearing surface does not require much pressure to hold it securely in place. I also like that the caming action also holds the light in place. This enables the light to be quickly and easily removed from the mount, turned around or reconfigured. This enables it to work with every rifle I've tried it on. I've now got a box full of used light mounts for sale." Brownells User Review

"I love this QD flashlight mount. I've bought several flashlight mounts for my rifles and shotguns. I have had the cheaper plastic mounts that just can't hold the flashlight securely with the recoil of a shotgun. This mount is also much easier to use than others due to the QD feature. The off-set angle mounts the flashlight at an angle I prefer, keeping it out of the way of a DBAL or other accessories you may also want to mount. I plan on replacing several of the mounts with this model.

." Amazon User Review

PRICE POINT:

I need it now! Availability: BrownellsAmazon or many online stores

OUR RATING:

Pros:

  • Very durable finish
  • Mount can be removed easily for attaching to another position or weapon
  • Light itself easily removable when cam in unlocked for maintenance or reconfiguration
  • Minimal footprint on the rail

Cons:

  • Minimal instruction for adjusting tension

SCORE: 8.5 GREAT

 


Featured FFL:

For FFL services I choose Promised Land Firearms in Toulon, IL.

Ryan's Links:

Gun & Gear Review Podcast
Hunter of Design


Pelican MityLite 1960 LED

Pelican MityLite 1960 LED

I am by no means a portable illumination connoisseur, but I seem to go through a flashlight about once every year. Either borrowed and never returned, lost, or broken, I never seem to have a flashlight handy when I need one. I'm not one for expensive name brand flashlights either, so you won't find any SureFire torches in my toolbox. That said, I always try to keep a handheld flashlight in my vehicle. Two is even better, with one being brighter than the other. The reason for this is if I'm ever broke down with a dead battery, especially at night, a flashlight is the most important tool to have. If you ain't got it, you're gonna be hurting. Even if I'm just digging around for something in the cab, under the seats, or helping someone under the hood... a light in your hand is your best friend.

Pelican MityLite 1960 LED

The light I keep in my glovebox is the Pelican MityLite 1960 LED. I got this mini pocket light as a stocking stuffer for Christmas a couple years ago. Like the cases Pelican is better known for, this flashlight is watertight and dustproof.

Pelican MityLite 1960 LED

With a runtime of only 3 hours on 2 AAA batteries, this flashlight is really better kept as a emergency light in the glovebox of your vehicle or in your pocket for casual illumination, NOT as an EDC carry flashlight. There are shorter, longer lasting lights with higher lumens that are better suited for checking out what's going bump in the night. However this lights underpowered lens helps in keeping you from blinding yourself when looking for your keys or that missing charger. It's rugged ABS body will take a beating like you'd expect from a Pelican product, so this makes a decent light in a pinch.

Firearms Insider Reviews – 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: An evolution of the popular MityLite 1900, the 1960 LED brings the latest in LED technology, built compact and lightweight to fit inside your pocket yet bright enough to illuminate with 24 lumens.

Target Market:  Everybody and their mothers

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • ABS resin body resists chemicals, corrosion and extreme temperatures
  • 24 Lumens LED
  • 2 AAA Alkaline (Included)
  • Runtime 3 hr
  • Tough xenoy pocket clip and trademark faceted body
  • Clear Polycarbonate lens
  • Rotary Switch Operation
  • On/Off mode only
  • Phosphore Bronze contact, spring & retainer
  • O-ring for waterproof / submersible to 1 meter for 30 minutes
  • Pelican Limited Lifetime Guarantee of Excellence

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: Black, Yellow

What others are saying?: None Found

Price point:

I need it now! Availability: Amazon

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Small enough for EDC or enclosed space illumination (vehicle cab, engine compartment, etc.)
  • Faceted body so won't roll on level surfaces
  • Dustproof, Waterproof, and submersible
  • The light can be activated with the shroud removed, improvised morse code signal

Cons:

  • Low Runtime of 3 hours for AAA powered LED

Score: 7.5 Good

 

 

Featured FFL:

For FFL services I choose Promised Land Firearms in Toulon, IL.

Ryan's Links:

Gun & Gear Review Podcast

Hunter of Design

Maratac AAx2 Tactical LED Flashlight Review

Maratac 2AAThe Maratac AAx2 LED Flashlight is a compact, powerful flashlight, powered by two AA batteries. The body is aluminum and is 7/8” wide. The tailcap is “Zombie” green, for no apparent reason. It activates by pressing it until it clicks. This means that there is no momentary-on. There are three brightness modes available: High – 620 lumens, Med – 110 lumens, and Low – 5 lumens. There is also a secondary set of modes when you loosen the head by ¼ turn. They are: Strobe, Fast Beacon(flash every 1 second), and Slow Strobe(flash every 3 seconds). To switch betweenMaratac 2AA Button modes, you simply “soft” tap(tap without fully depressing) the button, or quickly click it off, then back on again. There are raised fins around the activation button that shrouds the button from accidental activation. Personally, I believe it makes the button awkward to press. They get in the way, if you don’t position the light correctly in your hand. The crown of the light is crenulated, similar to a lot of other tactical lights, but it is not very pronounced, so I don’t think it would really do much damage if used defensively. Maratac 2AA Sharpie

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Compact and bright LED light

Target Market: Anyone that needs a light

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Bright
  • Compact
  • Many modes
  • AA batteries
  • Cree XP-G2 LED
  • 620 Lumens (advertised)
  • Mode Memory
  • Military Grade Anodized

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: TheMaratac AAx2 Tactical LED Flashlight is only available in black.

What others are saying?: I couldn’t actually find any reviews for this particular model light.

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability: You can purchase this light from County Comm.

Our Rating:

+-Bright +-Multi-mode +-Mode Memory +-Reversible clip

--Awkward button --No momentary on

Score 7.575

 

Maratac AAA LED Flashlight with Diffuser Review

Maratac AAAThe Maratac AAA Led Flashlight with diffuser is a pretty minuscule little power-house of a light. With an advertised brightness, in Hi mode, of 138 lumens, this is a dazzling little pocket light. The body is all aircraft aluminum that has been anodized for protection. The reflector is orange-peel textured, to provide a smooth, even beam. The reflector is made from an aluminum alloy. The light is powered from a single AAA battery and is reverse-polarity protected. The clip is very sturdy and is reversible to either end of the light. You could carry it with the clip toward the back, which would place the head facing down, if clipped to at pocket. Or, you could place the clip toward the head, which would be useful for clipping it to the bill of a hat, and giving you a makeshift head-light. There is also a very low-profile lanyard ring, for attaching it to a key ring or cord. Maratac AAA Compare

There are three brightness modes: hi, medium, and low. To power on the light, you simply tighten the head. This turns the light to its default level of Medium(advertised 40 lumens). To cycle through the power levels, just loosen and retighten the head. When the light is turned off for over three seconds, it will revert to its default brightness.

Maratac AAA DiffuserIn the package, there are extra O-rings and a glow diffuser. The glow diffuser slips onto the end of the light and spreads the beam, like a lantern. This is very useful for lighting the inside of a tent while camping or for playing card games when the power is out. When you turn the light off, the diffuser will glow in the dark for a few hours. The glow is bright enough to navigate in pitch black and also save your night-vision, as long as you charge it while its under a cover, so you don’t temporarily blind yourself. It is made of a flexible material, which makes me worry that it will eventually stretch out and not stay snug on the head.

All-in-all, this is a great little light for carrying in a pocket. I would recommend it to anyone that wants a small, but incredibly functional, utility light.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Tiny, but amazingly bright

Target Market: Anyone that needs a small light

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Small
  • Bright
  • Twist User Interface
  • Diffuser included
  • Strong and reversible clip
  • Lanyard loop
  • AAA Battery powered
  • 3 brightness modes
  • Diffuser glows in the dark

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: These lights are available in black, stainlesspolished stainless, and copper, though I think all but the black version are a previous generation, so they may lose some brightness and features.

What others are saying?: “So, after 6 months of using this thing clipped to my left pocket every day, even through power outages at work, I can say it's pretty awesome.” - Vicarious_Lee, ZombieSquad

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability: You can purchase this light from County Comm, but their website says that they are out of stock until July.

Our Rating:

+-Tiny +-Bright +-Reversible clip

--Twist U/I (not my preference)

Score 8.5 85

Brite-Strike EPLI Flashlight Review

2014-03-28 20.07.00 By Steve Kirkpatrick

The Brite-Strike EPLI (Executive Precision Lighting Instrument) is a great (slightly larger than) pen sized flashlight.  At 5.125" long and just over .5" wide this is a small yet surprisingly bright pocket flashlight.  I think carrying a flashlight is one of those things that you don't realize how much you can use until you have it.

While I do my share of outdoor activities, my day-to-day routine is in an office environment.  Because of this, I don't want to carry a flashlight that would be much larger in size.  It would be bulky and out of place.  However, with the EPLI, I have it clipped on my left pants pocket almost every waking hour, on jeans, khakis, dress pants, you name it.

The flashlight has three settings than can be rotated between by pressing the tailcap button. The first is high (160 lumens), the second setting is low (80 lumens) and the third is a strobe setting.  All three have their purposes and work great! The light is turned on by pressing the tailcap, obviously, but it can be pressed lightly and turns off when pressure is relieved or pressing it harder locks the light on.  When the light is on, turning it off and back on switches to the next setting, whether it was locked on or not.  After a small period of time of the light being off, it will reset to come on at the first (high) setting again. I’ve heard some arguments against setups like this because users may want only one option that always works as expected. I, however, think this is a great setup for an everyday, lightweight light that could be used for many situations. If you’re worried about pulling this in an emergency, possibly life-threatening, situation, you can train to know how many clicks you want for each setting (it’s as simple as 1, 2, or 3 clicks or taps).

This may not be the ideal flashlight for a camping trip or a long hike. I’m sure a heavier duty, longer lasting, and brighter flashlight would be a better choice in a situation where you are certain you’ll need one for a long period of time.  However, for day-to-day use, this is great!  And that’s not to say I wouldn’t trust it for the aforementioned tasks, it just might not be the BEST for them.  Requiring AAA alkaline batteries, the power source is often easily replaced in any environment.  I believe every concealed carrier should carry a light along with their firearm, and I believe this would be a great option for that situation.

Functionality aside, this is a really sharp looking flashlight. The black anodized finish and polished stainless steel and brass bezel look great on this flashlight! The only downside I found with this light is that the paint on the clip chipped within a month and not from heavy use. I wrote to Brite-Strike customer service and they eventually were willing to replace the clip for free, but I would have to pay shipping. Knowing it would be the same clip and likely to do the same thing, I just stuck with what I have, not willing to pay any extra for the same result. It’s tolerable, but not what I’d expect from a light that retails at $80.00. The body of the light itself is starting to show a little bit of wear on the edges, but I would expect that after a year of carrying almost every waking hour. Besides the clip paint chips within the first month, it has held up very nicely.

All-in-all, I love this flashlight.  If I were to lose it today, I’m pretty certain I’d get the same one again. Sadly, these seem to go for $55.00+ now, whereas I was able to get mine for $40 new on eBay in April 2013. Still, for as great of a flashlight as it has been for me, I’d spring for the extra $15 that the price has risen.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Slim and sleek penlight

Target Market: In their own words, “for the warrior whose battlefield is the board room”...in reality, it’s great for anyone looking for a small, easy-to-carry but bright flashlight.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Max Output: up to 160 lumens / Lo-80 Lumens
  • Waterproof and Shockproof
  • Battery: Two AAA Alkaline (included)
  • Length: 5.125 inches
  • Runtime: Hi-(.5 Hours) Lo-(6+Hours) Strobe-(.75 Hours)**
  • Gift Box (included)

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: The Brite-Strike EPLI Flashlight is only available in black.

What others are saying?: "the Executive light is indeed a white LED with a focused beam.  Of the two lights featured herein, this one is ‘long and thin’.  The Executive’s size is actually deceptive, looking at it you wouldn’t believe the light is as powerful as it is (220 Lumens) or that it is so stout and well made." - Paul Markel, Officer.com

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability: You can purchase this flashlight from many retailers, including Amazon, Optics Planet, and directly from Brite-Strike.

Our Rating: + Bright + Compact + Small + Lightweight + Sturdy + Functional

  • Could use a more durable finish on the clip

Score: 9.0 Amazing 90 

Maglite XL200 LED Flashlight Review

TJG Maglite XL200 Main I bought this light as my first carry light. I immediately loved it. My plan was to carry it in my back pocket, where I could easily reach it. The next day, while at work, I took it out of my pocket and it never went back in. It was a little too bulky for daily carry, but that’s not to say that it’s a bad light. It is very bright with an advertised lumen output of 172. The reflector is deep, which allows the light to throw the beam very far. I would say that the beam is usable to at least 75 yards. The user-interface is unique, though a bit odd. There is a single button on the rear of the light. To activate it, you press the button once, and it’s on. If you hold the button down, while also twisting the light in your hand, it will dim or brighten the beam(depending on which way you twist it) through the use of an accelerometer. ToTJG Maglite XL200 Button switch to other modes, you have to quickly tap the rear button differing amounts of times. Once for on, twice for strobe, three times for sleep(more on that in a second), four for signal mode, and five for SOS. The strobe have variable speeds activated the same way you dim/brighten the light. The sleep mode is a mode that leaves the light on your selected level until you set it down. Once it is still for a few seconds, the beam will dim to its lowest level. This could be used as a night light and locating the light in the dark. As soon as you pick it up, the beam goes back to your selected level. The SOS mode sets it to blink in the universal SOS pattern(3 long beams, 3 short beams, 3 long beams). The run-time is not great on high. I have never officially timed it, but it just seems to always die or be dim. Another negative would be that the light is completely round, so it doesn’t have anything to keep it from rolling off of a table. You can buy the Mini Maglite Accessory Pack and use the slip-on anti-roll head. This will also give you color filters, if you want. In the end, I would not recommend this light for carry, but as a relatively inexpensive, feature-packed light for all other occasions, I would recommend it.

 Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Compact flashlight that offers five basic, easy-to-use functions and stunning brightness.

Target Market: Sporting goods and general use

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product)

Key Features

  • Compact
  • Bright
  • Multiple modes
  • Motion-controlled power level
  • 3 AAA batteries

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available? This light is available in black, red, gray, and blue.

What others are saying? “Leading the Maglite product line both in terms of function and performance, the XL200 is a great multi-purpose performance flashlight.” - Robin Wang, LED Resource

Price Point:

 I need it now! Availability: The Maglite XL200 LED Flashlight is available from Amazon.

 Our Rating: + Bright + Far reach + Somewhat inexpensive + Multiple modes

- Low Run-time - Strange user-interface - Rolls too easily65 - Somewhat bulky

Score: 6.5

 

FourSevens Maelstrom Regen MMR-X

DSC_0529.jpg

MMR-X 2 The FourSevens MMR-X is another light in the family of quality products available from FourSevens. This platform is one of their larger offerings (though still pretty small for its level of light output) and is unique in the fact that it is rechargeable through a micro-USB cable. This would be an excellent duty-gear, truck, or nightstand light for nearly any consumer.

The MMR-X offers the ability to program the light from a series of 5 different options, including varying combinations of moonlight, low, high, max, strobe, beacon, and SOS. I found configuration 2 to fit my everyday needs best, allowing me to cycle between max and low depending on what I needed it for.

The MMR-X is powered by a proprietary 18650 lithium ion rechargeable battery; a non-FourSevens 18650 battery can be used, however certain features of the light are lost. At a replacement cost of $15 from FourSevens, there should be no need to use any other branded battery. For a multiuse rechargeable battery, I applaud FourSevens for not charging a ridiculous amount of money for a replacement. On max output the battery is listed to last 2 hours, although in testing I found it to last closer to 2.5 hours before seeing a significant reduction in brightness. From a full discharge, it took between 4-5 hours to recharge the flashlight to full capacity. A sealed micro-USB input is contained where the head meets the body and a small red or green light informs you of where your battery is at in the recharging process.

The light itself has a very nice fit and finish and has a nice aggressively scalloped bezel that can be used as an improvised striking tool if things got nasty; it would definitely leave a mark. For those who don’t want such an aggressive bezel, you are in luck because it also comes with a smooth bezel which easily screws on. In “burst” mode, the MMR-X powers out 800 lumens of light which is reduced to 400 lumens after 1 minute of continuous run time. In FourSevens fashion, the light comes with a few spare o-rings, a lanyard, and an alternate tail cap clicky and boot so the user can choose from a long click or a short click. Their 10 year no-hassle warranty also allows owners to rest assured they won’t need to spend any more of their hard-earned money on a replacement should anything go wrong.

The MMR-X is advertised to survive a 1 meter (3.2ft) drop which I feel is a little low. Under testing, the light survived a 3 meter (10ft.) fall on concrete. The light also survived an even larger fall at 6 meters (20ft.), but the battery did not. I can’t fault the battery for breaking at 20ft. because it is only advertised to 3ft., but I’d like to see more impact resistance in the future. It is certainly rugged enough for everyday use but having an extra 18650 battery around wouldn’t be a bad idea. The light performed well in water submersion tests, meaning that puddle and shallow lake drops won’t hurt this beast. It also operated properly after being subjected to freezing temperatures for 24 hours.MMR-X 1

Overall this is an excellent light with various uses and the convenience of being rechargeable via any USB port. Replacement batteries, although proprietary (to use all functions of the light), are reasonably priced as well. In the future I’d like to see some ultra-impact survival lights from FourSevens, focused on the market of users who need a light to work no matter what they do to it. If FourSevens offered a fully potted model with some of their best features from their most popular flashlights, they would posture themselves to crush their competitors with functionality, reliability, and toughness.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: An extremely bright, user configurable, rechargeable light.

Target Market: Anyone who enjoys being able to see things in the dark.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Rechargeable 18650 lithium ion battery.
  • 800 max lumens and 1 low lumen (moonlight).
  • User programmable configuration of light options with the tail cap.

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available? You can get any color, as long as it is black.

What others are saying? “There is nothing more capable or flexible on the market.  It is also a superior value, both because of the price and because of the rechargeable battery that is included.” –Everydaycommentary.com

Price point:

  • MSRP = $100
  • Retail = $83 plus free shipping at etoolscity.com

I need it now! Availability: In-stock and available through the manufacturer and multiple online retailers.

Our Rating:

+ Extremely bright emitter with great throw. + Micro-USB recharging feature is excellent. + User programmable format allows for customization. + Reasonably priced replacement batteries. + 10 year no-hassle warranty.

- Keep the manual so you can remember how to program the light. - Pocket clip would be an excellent option, especially to clip onto/into a bag or backpack. - Assembled in China with components from USA, China, and Malaysia.

Score 8.0 (Great)80

 

Steve’s links: Firearmsradio.tv

Sunwayman V20c Tactical Flashlight Review

Sunwayman V20c

I was turned on to Sunwayman flashlights by a friend of mine who had a similar model. I was looking for a good flashlight and I liked his. When I started looking at flashlights, I had issue with the multiple click programming to change brightness. Then I found the V20c, the button on the back just turns the light on and off. It has a collar behind the light head that changes the brightness from 0 to 430 lumens and strobe. I carry this flashlight everyday, at home and at work. I purchased two 18650 3000mah rechargeable batteries. I try and swap them out the 1st of the month so i always have a good battery. I have been running this light for over a year and have no complaints. I comes with a fairly well made canvass holster with a velcro enclosure. The belt loop is both permanently attached and velcro attached which allows you to put it on your belt without removing your belt.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame:  Innovative, high output flashlights.

Target Market:  Anyone wanting a high quality, variable output flashlight.

FNBs: (features & benefits of this product)

  • CREE XM-LED with a lifetime of up to 50,000 hours
  • Digital Sensor Magnetic Control system - slightly twist the Rotator Ring from left to right to select desired mode from super-low current standby, output ranging from 0.5 to 438 lumens, to strobe function
  • Constant current circuit, constant output
  • Effective range of 300 meters
  • Uses two 3V CR123A batteries or one single 18650 battery
  • Working voltage: 3~8.4V
  • High quality reflector maintains great throw distance and spread with an ideal beam pattern
  • Dimensions: 134mm (length) x 32mm (head diameter) x 25.5mm (tail diameter)
  • Weight: 120g(battery excluded)
  • Aerospace-grade aluminum alloy
  • Military Specification Type III- hard anodized body
  • Waterproof, in accordance with IPX-8 standard
  • Ultra-clear tempered glass lens resists scratches and impacts
  • Tactical forward click switch with momentary on
  • Tail stand capable- can be used as a candle
  • Accessories: Metal tactical ring, lanyard, holster, O-ring, rubber cap

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: This is an aluminum alloy, hard anodized grey finish.

 What others are saying?

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability:  Readily available at stores like Amazon.

Our Rating:

+ Reliable + Comfortable + Easy to use

- Lanyard clip bends and comes off

Score: 8.080 Great

FourSevens Atom AL

SR-Review-Atom-AL-1.jpg

Atom AL 2

The FourSevens Atom AL is an ultra-compact every day carry (EDC) LED light with useful features and great value.  FourSevens is known for their ingenuity and quality products and the Atom AL is no different.  This light fits in the palm of your hand and is great for pocket, truck, or desk carry.

The Atom AL is advertised to run on CR123A batteries with 110 max lumens and 6 low lumens.  On low setting it can run for 40 hours and also runs for 3.5 hours on max.  It is also submersible down to 3 meters and can withstand an impact resistance of 1 meter for you clumsy types.  During a submersion test, the Atom AL continued to run with no issues when placed in a vat of water to simulate puddle or shallow lake water drops.  The light continued to run during the entire 30 minutes it was submersed for, and even heated the water for those of you who like to sip on warm water.  The light passed the 1 meter concrete drop test with no issues, and as a test of its limits it continued to work after a 6 meter (20ft) concrete drop test as well.  Its compact size and stout construction makes it like a bulldog of ultra-compact lights.  The manufacturer specifications don’t mention anything about operating temperatures, but 24 hours in a freezer didn’t stop this bulldog from shining like it would in normal temperatures.

The light is considered a “mule” meaning it has no mirrored reflector, resulting in a flood-like shallow and wide throw of light.  The area around the LED normally reserved for a reflector is coated with a glow in the dark substance, which is a unique feature allowing for quick locating if dropped or lost in the dark shortly after a recent use.  The beam has no “hot spot” and is useful in short and medium range distances.  The light has a low setting (6 lumens) and a high setting (110 lumens) accessible by twisting the light in one of two stages.  This simple user interface makes it easy to access either setting; this is a welcome change to some of FourSevens’ other more complex and sometimes confusing user interfaces.

The exterior is slightly “grippy” which allows for sweaty or cold hands to firmly grasp the light when twisting it on.  As a side note, out of the box the light was a little hard to twist with one-handed Atom AL 3operation.  After cleaning the threads between the upper and lower portions of the light, it became much easier to operate.  The base of the light also contains a magnet allowing it to be affixed to any ferrous surface.  This magnet really comes into play during pocket carry because your car keys will stick to it, so just make sure you carry them in opposite pockets to avoid the hassle.  The magnet becomes the biggest benefit when the light is used in conjunction with the optional 360 degree headlamp kit available from FourSevens for only $15.  I tested this feature out as well and it makes for an excellent combination.  While wearing the headlamp and light combo kit might qualify you for the household geek of the year award, the convenience of the units together make the headlamp kit a must-have option.

The light comes from the factory with spare O-rings and a handy lanyard, which I think are nice touches.  Some people don’t like lights requiring more expensive CR123A batteries; these people are in luck because FourSevens also makes versions of this same light which handle AA, AAA, and CR2 batteries.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: An ultra-compact rugged everyday carry LED light that is barely bigger than the battery it contains.

Target Market: Anyone who enjoys being able to see things in the dark.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • CR123A battery.
  • 110 max lumens and 6 low lumens.
  • Simple two stage user interface.
  • Optional inexpensive headlamp kit available.

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?:  Matte Stainless Steel.

What others are saying?:   “The Atom AL is a remarkably tiny CR123A light.” – User “selfbuilt” on candlepowerforums.com provides a highly detailed technical review of the Atom AL.

Price point:

I need it now! Availability: In-stock and available through the manufacturer and multiple online retailers.

Our Rating:

+ Extremely compact and rugged design. + Works well with optional inexpensive headlamp kit. + Simple user interface to access both low and high settings. + Extra O-rings and lanyard were a nice touch.

- Magnet in base has a tendency to stick to keys while utilizing pocket carry. - Lack of a reflector can make the light a little too “floody” for some users. - Assembled in China with components from USA, China, and Malaysia.

Score: 8.5 85

Steve’s links: Firearmsradio.tv

FourSevens Quark X AA2 Tactical Review

TJG-FourSevens-Quark-Main.jpg

FourSevens Quark

The FourSevens Quark X AA2 Tactical (what a mouthful!) is a great light. I chose this light for its relative compactness, its output, and the common battery it uses. Using the AA battery allows it to be much thinner than many other “EDC” lights. Most 123 battery lights are 1 inch in diameter. The Quark AA2 is only .86 inch in diameter. It is relatively close in dimensions to the classic Mini-Mag light, FourSevens vs MiniMagbut with so many more features. This allows you to carry it clipped to the inside of a pocket with much less noticeable bulk. Plus, I use my light so much, that I am thankful for the use of common, relatively inexpensive batteries. The lengthy name can be decoded for easy identification of the lights function. “Quark” is the actual model name. The “X” denotes that is the brighter version of that particular model. The “AA” is the battery used and the “2” is the number of that battery. The “Tactical” lets you know what the user interface is like. There are two interfaces, “Pro” and “Tactical”.  The Pro cycles through each of the modes by simply soft-pressing the tail cap switch. The Tactical is programmable. It only has two readily available modes, but those two modes can set to whatever you want. The way to switch between them is by either loosening or tightening the bezel. As an example, you can set it up as Loose = Max and Tight = Strobe. For such a compact light running off of AA batteries, it has an amazing output. FourSevens advertises 280 lumens on this X model. The standard(non-X) is advertised at 205 lumens. With my normal use, this light seems to have a pretty good runtime. I usually keep it on High, which is 115 lumens, and I seem to rarely change the batteries. The Tactical has a momentary/constant switch. To use the momentary, you soft press the switch. To make it constant on, you just press the switch all the way in. You can also swap the head and tail cap, which lets you choose if you want the clip to carry it head-up or head-down. I had to send my light back to the factory for repair, because I accidentally got water inside of the tube and the head malfunctioned. This was entirely my fault, and not a faulty seal, but FourSevens fixed it free of charge. My only ding against them would be that I didn’t get any sort of ETA when I returned it. Six weeks doesn’t seem like a terribly long time to wait, but when you have no clue how long it will be, that seems like an eternity.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Bright and compact

Target Market: Concealed carriers that want a relatively compact, tactical light.

FNBs: (Features & Benefits of this product)

Key FeaturesFourSevens Quark Pocket

  • 280 Lumens
  • Compact
  • Many modes to choose from
  • Uses 2 AA batteries

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?

The Quark only comes in black.

What others are saying?

“Quality of fit and finish is excellent throughout the Quark AA2 Tactical and I anticipate all the Quark lights, including this one, to be lifetime lights.” - nutnfancy

Price point

I need it now! Availability:

Readily available from many retailers, including Amazon.

 Our Rating

+ Compact + Bright + Uses common batteries + Can use rechargeable batteries + Momentary and Constant on - Repair customer service was relatively slow and kept me in the dark

Score 9.5

Amazing

 

ATAC A1

ATAC A1

I was in the market for not just an EDC (every day carry) flashlight, but something that would also come in handy during a night time home invasion.  You see, I'm not into weapon mounted lights on my home defense handgun.  I know there are a lot of great arguments out there to have one on your gun, but I don't want to point the muzzle of my weapon at something/someone that I don't intend to shoot.  With a weapon mounted light, that is a scenario that does happen.

After reading a lot of reviews and doing some homework of my own, I decided to purchase the 5.11 Tactical ATAC A1 flashlight.  5.11 took the time to design this light with feedback from law enforcement officers and tactical operators to bring to the market a product of reliability, durability and utility.  The ATAC A1 uses a smart Cree LED bulb to throw 103 lumens on high/strobe up to 50 minutes or 28 hours on low (11 lumens) from 1 AA battery.  The tail cap switch of the flashlight allows you to move from high, low or strobe with no auditory sound.  In addition, the ATAC A1 also allows you to do a momentary on for a quick blast of light.

Last but not least, I truly am a fan of the pocket clip attached to this flashlight.  I know that sounds weird, but I hate when I'm trying to pull my pocket knife out and the clip gets stuck on my pants.  The pocket clip on this flashlight is smooth and has not yet gotten caught on any of my pants. "Happy Happy Happy"

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: An all purpose built tactical flashlight.

Target Market: Police, security personnel and the every day people.

FNB's:  (Features and Benefits of this product)

  • Regulated circuit and CREE LED
  • Waterproof
  • Machined aerospace-grade aluminum
  • Multi-function tail cap switch with momentary-on (high/ultra low/strobe)
  • Anti-roll ring
  • 103 lumens for high and strobe, 11 lumens for low
  • 1 AA battery (included)

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?:  Black is the only color choice that 5.11 offers this light in.

What others are saying?:

Price point:

I need it now! Availability: Readily available online at stores like Optics Planet, Amazon and or 5.11 Tactical.

Our Rating: + Multi-function tail cap switch + Machined aerospace-grade aluminum + Break-away lanyard included + Pocket clip does not get caught on pants making it easy to access + Waterproof

Score: 9.090

Jared prefers Simon Peter Sport Company for all his FFL needs.

Simon Peter Sport banner

Surefire G2ZX Combatlight

surefire-G2ZX-Combatlight.jpg

 surefire G2ZX Combatlight

I got this Surefire G2ZX Combat light in about a month and a half ago, I use it on a daily basis as part of my EDC, at first I was worried it was going to be too big for my pockets because I was used to an old E2D defender I’ve used since my first deployment in Iraq in 2006…But thats not an issue, fits perfectly, which leads me to why I chose Surefire over a competitor.  Surefire make solid products, but yes sometimes companies who make great products get so proud of them that they price themselves right out of business.  I think this was becoming true for Surefire and they had the due diligence to see it and came out with a new line of awesome polymer bodied lights that also come with increased battery life, more powerful LED lamps with increased lumens over the exact same lights they had a couple of years ago.  So thats enough for my rant, here are the specs and first impressions I have with this light.

The G2ZX Combatlight takes 2 cr123A lithium batteries, has a powerful 320 lumens with a 2.5 hour solid runtime and comes with a rubber ring for using the “Surefire” method when shooting a handgun in low light (which is my preference and found it works VERY well for maintaining a good grip on the light in your non-shooting hand, while also using that hand as support for the handgun.  Momentary pressure switch, with an option to turn the rear section for constant on.  It also comes with a steel lanyard ring and black lanyard.  The lamp head is made from Surefire's quality aluminum, and the rest of the body is very high strength polymer.  Overall length is 5.2 inches, weight is 4.3 OZ.  Very bright!  I shined it across a field and could see the trees pretty clear that were about 150 yards away! (and I have poor eyesight)  This is a great light, I would recommend it for anyone including Military, police, fire & rescue, and the everyday CCW holder. REMEMBER even if you are “just a ccw” holder, its very important to have a light.  Don’t be that boot who gets into a sticky situation where you cannot clearly see or identify your target.. it may mean your life, the life of a loved one or land you in the slammer if you take a bad shot.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Great for unattached light for pistol shooting.

Target Market: Great for police, military, fire/rescue and or CCW holders.

FNB's (features & benefits of this product):

  • Very bright 320 lumens
  • Long lasting LED lamp
  • Uses 2 common 123a lithium batteries
  • Rubber combat grip ring for using the “surefire method”
  • Very tough Nitrolon polymer body
  • Anodized steel lanyard ring with lanyard
  • Momentary pressure rear switch or turn for constant on
  • 5.2 INCHES OVERALL LENGTH
  • 4.3 OZ

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?:  Black

What others are saying?:

  • Would Expect Nothing Less
  • This is my third Surefire and the G2ZX is what I would expect from Surefire. Superb quality and a precision piece of equipment. I use this one as my nightstand light since it has a higher output than the others.Reviewed by R Capiola (Posted on 1/5/14)
  • Amazing!
  • One of the best illumination tools I have ever used! Extremely bright and goes very far too! It really is a handheld spotlight! I would choose nothing else for my lighting needs than surefire!Reviewed by Dunaj (Posted on 10/24/13)
  • G2ZX
  • Surefire is not a flashlight it's like holding a piece of the sun. I'll never own anything else after having my Surefire.Reviewed by Jerry (Posted on 10/12/13)

Price Point

I need it now! Availability: Optics Planet has them listed as discontinued by the manufacturer but LA Police Gear has them in stock.

Score: 90

Streamlight TLR1-S

 TLR1s-2

To me at least, there never seems to be enough money to support all the wants and needs of my hobby.  So for me, the ability to have a multitasker that can perform on pretty much any piece of hardware I own Is huge.  This light is so versatile, it can be fitted to TLR1s-3anything from a compact carry gun to an AR-15. To think of it, pretty much anything that you can slap a Picatinny rail to, you can  add this light.  For my needs, a product that is so versatile, reliable and affordable, can’t be passed up.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Quality and affordability.

 Target Market: Home Defense and tactical Operations.

 FNB's:

 Features

  • Durable LED lasting up to 50,000 hours
  • 300 Lumens LEDTLR1s-1
  • 10 year battery shelf life with 2.5 hours of runtime
  • Comes with “keys” for Glock-style, Picatinny, Beretta 90two, S&W 99 and S&W TSW
  • Strobe feature when you double tap the paddle
  • Incredible value
  • Waterproof to 1m for 30 seconds

Benefits

  • Super bright
  • Easy to use
  • Durable

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?:  This product is also available in its original non-strobe model.  Product Page

What others are saying?:

 Price point :  I grabbed mine up for $100 on Amazon a few months ago, but now they are going for around $115-$130.

  •  MSRP = None listed on Streamlight site.
  • Retail = Amazon

 I need it now! Availability: Very common easily found online and in many gun stores.

Our Rating

+ Price + Construction + Brightness + Versatility

- Strobe activation on draw with trigger finger may take practice.

Score: 9.090

My Links:

NJ Gun Blog

 

LRI Photon Freedom Micro-Light Review

Photon Freedom

This light may look like a last-minute grab at the gas station check-out counter, but it is far from that! The Photon Freedom has proven to be an excellent light. It is very small and light, plus can be activated with one hand by a push button on the top. It is offered in the regular version and the “Covert” model. The covert model adds a shield around the LED to prevent spilling of side light. I chose the Covert model for that reason. Unlike most key-chain lights, it has an actual on/off switch, rather than just a momentary on. It is not incredibly bright, but very usable, when you need it. It will even dimly light up my neighbor’s yard from 

Photon Freedom Magnetabout 40 yards away just enough to make sure my dog isn’t wandering. When you hold the activation switch, the light will start on a very dim setting and ramp its way up to its max output. Once there, the light will flash once, to notify you that it is in max. If the light is on, it will do the opposite and get dimmer, once again, flashing when it’s at its lowest setting. Continuing to hold the button past the flash will start the light into its specialty modes. You can choose slow beacon, fast beacon, strobe and auto SOS by releasing the button once on the desired setting. You can even set it to momentary by rapidly pressing the on/off button 6 times. The light comes in many beam colors including white, red, blue, purple and even infrared. It also comes with a mount that has a clip and magnets for nearly unlimited hand-free placement options.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: U.S. Made, feature-packed Micro-Light

Target Market: Anyone and everyone! 

FNBs: (Features & Benefits of this product)

Key Features

  • Small & light
  • Multi-mode
  • Varying light output
  • Uses 2 CR 2016 batteries

Key Benefits

  • One-handed activation
  • Easy battery change
  • Comes with hat clip\magnet mount

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?

The standard Photon Freedom comes in black and pink, but the Covert only comes in black.

What others are saying?

“A great little pocket light - put it on your keychain and you'll always have a light with you when you need it.”  - Flashlight Reviews

Price point:

I need it now! Availability:

Widely available! I purchased mine from Amazon.com

Our Rating For its intended purpose (always there EDC), this light is amazing

+ Small + Light + Always there + Multi-Function + Feature-packed + Easy battery change

Score: 8.585

FourSevens Preon 2 Review

Preon 2 Main

The FourSevens Preon 2 is a great everyday carry light. Powered by 2 AAA batteries, it is very slim and easy to carry in the pocket. It is about the size of a standard size Sharpie marker.

Preon 2 with Sharpie

The advertised output is 160 Lumens. It has a very shallow reflector, so it does not project the beam very far, but the light is still usable for seeing movement out to about 50+ yards. The light has 3 output levels and 4 Special modes. The modes are Low(2.2 lumens), Medium(22 lumens), High (160 lumens), Strobe, SOS, Beacon Hi and Beacon Lo. The light turns on in low mode and to access other modes, you can either “soft” tap the tailcap switch, or turn it off and back on within a second. Once you cycle through Low-Med-High twice in quick succession, you will start to cycle through the special modes. The light has a beautiful anodizing that feels almost like velvet to the touch. It holds up very well, except around the hard edges, like the bezel. The tailcap activation switch is very positive and easy to actuate, but it’s almost TOO easy. If you carry this light in your pocket, rather than clipped inside of your pocket, you are sure to activate. One way around this is to purchase a flat tailcap from FourSevens. It is the tailcap that comes standard on their single battery version. With the flat tailcap installed, you must twist the bezel to activate the light. Another way is just to unscrew the bezel. It will work just like having the flat tailcap, except you will have to make sure the clicky switch is on at the same time. The lights are a little pricey, for their size, but very much worth it, in my opinion.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Ultracompact and incredibly bright!

Target Market: Anyone who needs to carry a flashlight with them, which, in my opinion is EVERYONE!

FNBs: (Features & Benefits of this product)

Key Features

  • Slim, sleek design
  • Simple interface
  • Bright

Key Benefits

  • “Always there” compactness
  • Runs on AAA batteries

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?

There are many colored anodizing options available including black, red, blue, gold and satin titanium/black 2-tone.

What others are saying?

“For its excellent ergonomics, longer burn times, and attention getting brightness level, I prefer the Preon 2.”  - nutnfancy

Price point

I need it now! Availability

Readily available from many retailers, including Amazon.

Our Rating

+ Compact + Bright + Simple interface + Many finish colors

- Possible inadvertent activation - Pricey to some (worth it to me!)

Score: 990

 

Primary Arms - Ultimate Weapon Light (Gen 2)

Primary Arms - UWL

By Eric Janhunen

I've been in the market for a rifle mounted light option for awhile now.  After checking the usual suspects for something affordable, I Primary Arms - UWL 2went to the forums and that’s where I found the Primary Arms UWL (Ultimate Weapons Light).  The light comes with an integrated picatinny rail mount, multiple o-rings to seal things up and tight machine work.  I was also happy to see Streamlight batteries included to bring me the power needed to operate that light.  When I first saw this, my first thoughts were that this is a bit on the big side when you configure the housing to hold all 3 battery cells.  However, that was not the case.  The light may be a bit on the larger side, but not so much as to causing it to be a hinderance.  A small issue that I discovered is that I've yet to find a tape switch holder that will hold the switch to my rail.  This has caused me to improvise a bit.  From my research, I found that the rear housing and tailcap is outsourced. Primary Arms made the flashlight head and battery cell extension tube.  So sorry guys, this is not a 100% made USA product.  On the other hand, this sucker is bright at 450 lumens!  The UWL features one high power LED inside of an aluminum polished bezel flashlight head.  On a 16” bull barrel AR, there is slight muzzle shadow but it’s not enough to be an issue.  I find the beam to be sharp and very solid.  This makes the light comparable to some higher-end lights that I've used in the past.  With that being said, I think this is a great option for someone who wants to light up their life ( ha-ha) and not break the bank in doing so.  Primary Arms is on a lot of the AR and builder forums, so it’s clear that they listen to the customer base.  Overall, I have a feeling that these lights can only get better from an already solid system.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame:  A value light that is a real contender!

Target Market:  A weekend warrior’s rifle to duty guns.

FNBs:  (Features & Benefits of this product)

  • High Lumens for the price point.
  • Very clean machining work on the housing.
  • Aluminum reflecting bezel instead of plastic.
  • Configurable from a 3 cell Cr123A body, to a 2 cell smaller body.

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?:  You have two options for colors; Flat dark earth and black.  They also offer to bundle the light with a tape switch for another $19.

What others are saying?:  YouTube

Price point:

MSRP - $89.99 Retail - $89.99

I need it now! Availability:  Primary Arms ships  these products out extremely fast.  Primary Arms

Our Rating:  It’s a great little light! I’ve been to the range quite a bit and don’t take it easy on my guns, so far its held up great!

+ Cheap! With the tape switch this is a touch over 100 bucks shipped + Bright (450 Lumens) + Waterproof/shockproof + One year warranty

- Made overseas - Tape switch is on the large side and wont fit most rail switch mounts - Housing and head on the large side with the 3 cell configuration

Score: 8.080

 

 

Elzetta ZFL-M60 Flashlight Review

Elzetta-Light-Mounted.jpg

Elzetta Light Dark

By Jake Challand

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 key points

Claim to Fame:  Eleztta makes the claim on their website that they make the “Toughest Flashlights on the Planet.”

Target Market:  People whose lives depend on a good flashlight, police and military just to name a few.

FNB’s: (Features & Benefits of the product)  One tough flashlight made right here in the USA.Elzetta Light Mounted

Key Features:

  • Modular Design, heads, bodies and tailcaps are all mix and match compatible
  • 2 and 3 cell bodies
  • 235 Lumens

Key Benefits:

  • Virtually unbreakable
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • Waterproof
  • Made 100% in the USA, even the batteries

What aesthetic options or finishes are available?  Custom laser engraving is offered for $10.00.

What others are saying?:  “These lights offer a level of durability and reliability that I am not sure can be equaled by any other flashlight that is available.”

Price point:

I need it now! Availability:  In stock at Elzetta.com and Amazon.com

Our Rating:

+ Made in the USA. + Lifetime Warranty. + Virtually indestructable.

- No belt clip option.

Score 9.0 Amazing!90

Featured FFL:

Jake Challand prefers ZZ Cops Gun Room for all of his FFL needs.

Jake Challand Gun Guy Radio This Week In Guns

Streamlight Nano Light

Streamlight Nano By Devin Blystone

This is one of the most compact flashlights I’ve ever seen or used. It’s not the brightest flashlight but for its size, it’s more than adequate. I’ve used this flashlight for lighting up a lock, finding lost items, and to light my path in the dark. I can also attest to its claim to be weatherproof since I lost mine during the winter and found it after the snow melted, half buried in mud. A quick trip to the sink cleaned it up and showed that it was still working great.  

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Tiny, weatherproof personal flashlight

Target Market: Every day carry, keychain light

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product)

  • Easily attaches/detaches to just about anything with convenient pocket clip or key ring.
  • Up to 8 hrs. run time.
  • Machined aircraft-grade aluminum with anodized finish.
  • 100,000 hr. lifetime high-intensity LED.
  • LED available in white (10 lumens).

Does it come in black? Black, Blue, Pink, Red, Coyote, Orange.

What others are saying? “Perfect EDC”

Price point (MSRP versus actual retail)

I need it now! Availability: They may have some models at Walmart but Amazon and LA Police Gear have tons of availability.

Our Rating + Long run time. + Multiple ways to attach it to things. + Batteries can be found cheap online. + Weather proof. + Sturdy.

- The finish chips off if stored on a key ring. - Doesn’t provide a good grip to twist on/off.

Score 8.5 Great85

To hear more about this and other gear go check out the Firearms Radio Networks new show Firearms Insider Gun & Gear Review Podcast.

Streamlight TLR-1s

Untitled

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame  Intensely bright, virtually indestructible tactical light, attaches/detaches to almost any gun in seconds.

Target Market Home Defense/Self Defense minded gun owners.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product) Untitled LED rating of 300 lumens Strobe setting (toggle or hold) 2.5 hour run time Compatible with various mount types using included rail keys.

Does it come in black? Black Only

What others are saying? Glock Pro

 Price point (MSRP versus actual retail) MSRP =  $202.98 (no MSRP given on streamlight's website, but listed on LApolicegear Retail = $99.99

 I need it now! Availability Local Gun Shops, Sporting Goods, LE Suppliers, Cabelas

 Our Rating + Controls are easily in reach when mounted on a handgun (paddles on either side of the trigger guard) + Robust construction and bottom is flush with Glock trigger guards. + Extremely bright, temporarily blinding with direct eye contact. +  Mounts fast and easy with thumb screw and spring loaded mounting jaws, easily swap between sidearm, shotgun, and long guns with picatinny rails present. +  Activation modes - light momentarily activates with pressure on the paddle in one direction, and toggles on when pressed in the opposite direction. -  Light protrudes over half an inch past the muzzle of a Glock 19 (Choice of firearms/light issue: Streamlight makes shorter models) -  Control paddle activates with slightest pressure, often flashes on when drawing from holster or setting down on uneven surface. -  May require a custom holster, light body is 1.375" wide where as most handguns are narrower, as well as holsters.

Score:   8.5 Great85

 

Featured FFL Ryan Cross prefers Promised Land Firearms for all his FFL needs.

 

Ryan Cross Blog

 

The TLR-1s is a great light for those looking to forgo pressure switches and specifically mount to a handgun platform, although it works on shotguns and rifles decently as well.  The strobe's activation is a bit challenging to use in stressful scenarios, as it requires a rapid "double tap" of the paddle switch (easier to do with supporting hand's thumb as opposed to trigger finger on a handgun). The light does protrude over half an inch from the muzzle of my Glock 19, however it isn't too intrusive and the controls are exactly where they need to be.  I've used the beam as a spotlight numerous times, its deceptively bright for its size. Great addition to the 'truck gun.'