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View Full Version : Carry Light that won't break the bank?


jgcoastie
March 7, 2009, 08:50 PM
I need another flashlight as I am tired of replacing the holster for my 'almost too big to carry' Smith & Wesson LED light. The nylon holster keeps coming apart at the seams and I just keep replacing it once every 6 weeks or so. Tired of doing this. I want one that is really bright (85+ lumens), small enough to clip on much like a pocketknife to either my belt or in a pocket, comes with an interchangeable red or blue filter, and doesn't cost a small fortune. (Less than $150)

Any ideas????

Wagonman
March 7, 2009, 09:41 PM
Pelican has some nice LED flashlights plenty bright and don't break the bank.

sholling
March 7, 2009, 10:00 PM
I have a whole bunch of lights that I like. Fenix are very well thought of over on the candlepowerforums (www.candlepowerforums.com)* and I keep a Fenix P1D (https://www.fenix-store.com/product_info.php?cPath=22_65&products_id=354) on my belt at all times. The thing is tiny and puts out a good light.

I keep a L2D (https://www.fenix-store.com/product_info.php?cPath=22_56&products_id=195) in my car because the AA batteries are easy to find, but it's small enough for what you want. They have a new version that's even brighter called the LD20.

I keep a TK11B (https://www.fenix-store.com/product_info.php?cPath=22_85&products_id=497) by my chair and in my desk. Maybe a tad heavy for what you want.

Red Filters (https://www.fenix-store.com/advanced_search_result.php?keywords=filter&x=0&y=0)

One final option is the Pelican 7060 LED (http://www.amazon.com/Pelican-7060-Tactical-LED-light/dp/B00197C22M/ref=pd_bbs_1?ie=UTF8&s=hi&qid=1236480737&sr=8-1) for belt wear. I doubt you'll wear out that sheath in a month. It's leather and designed for duty belts. :D I'm not sure about filters.

*cpf members used to get a small discount at the fenix-store. Google might turn up the code.

Bond007
March 7, 2009, 10:00 PM
Try the Fenix PD20 (http://fenixgear.com/store/viewItem.asp?idProduct=40#catalog/img/pd20.jpg). I just bought one and love it. Single cell light, really bright, really small and about $60.

FALPhil
March 8, 2009, 12:11 AM
Coleman Cree XLamp (http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=10196618)

jgcoastie
March 8, 2009, 02:08 AM
Thanks guys, I really like the PD20 and the TK11B. What type of material is the holster for the TK11B made of? Is it durable?

sholling
March 8, 2009, 03:27 AM
The TK11 comes in a medium duty nylon holster with a flap closure. I don't have PD20 but I have the similar P2D and it came with a light duty but not flimsy open top holster. They do put out some serious light.

If you don't have a source for discount Li-Ion batteries I've used Battery Junction a couple of times and was treated fairly. Just remember that you probably want to use decent quality matched cells when running pairs of CR123 batteries (http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/showthread.php?t=120888) in any high output flashlight. I've never had a problem but I like to give full disclosure. FWIW I use a single rechargeable 2600mAh 18650 Li-ion battery in my TK11s.

Homerboy
March 8, 2009, 07:45 AM
Surefire G2 with LED bulb. $50. Great light.

Delta1067
March 8, 2009, 09:48 PM
1. Jet Beam Military III: http://www.bugoutgearusa.com/jemi.html
Review: http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/showthread.php?t=211631

2. Surefire 6P Incandescent: http://www.surefire.com/6P-Original

If you go this rout by a Malkoff LED Drop In. This is without argument the best LED drop in on the market. 235 Lumens. $55 http://www.malkoffdevices.com/shop2/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=1_8&products_id=

3. Eagletac P100C: http://www.pts-flashlights.com/products/product.aspx?pid=152-153-6607

shooter_john
March 9, 2009, 10:55 AM
Since I lost my Surefire E2L, and couldn't readily afford to replace it, I picked up one of the Pelican 3330's and absolutely could not be happier (especially since I got mine on sale for $24!!!).

http://www.lapolicegear.com/pelican-pm6-3330-polymer-led-flashlight.html

Delaware_Dan
March 13, 2009, 02:23 PM
Romisen RC-F4 with a CREE P4 LED 160 Lumens $14.60 @Dealextreme.com(read the reviews)

Romisen RC-F4 with a CREE Q5 LED 230 Lumens $22.95 @shiningbeam.com

I have the Romisen RC-F4 from dealextreme for $15, and if you point it at a white ceiling in a pitch black room it will light up the whole room enough to read easily. This is the brightest little flashlight for the money on the market and the quality is top notch.

The "hot spot" stays tight (about 10-12 inches) at 20 feet, and is impressive out to 100 yards. Shipping time (from dealextreme) is the only downfall though, it can be up to a month, but is usually quicker.

I recomend this flashlight to anyone who can't afford/justify a Surefire. It's brighter, cheap, and the fit and finish are superb. Romisen is very underrated IMHO. I have been meaning to do a review for this flashlight for a while. It just might be time. The batteries are CR123a By the way.

sholling
March 13, 2009, 03:40 PM
A couple of things to keep in mind about some $20 lights. I'm sure there are some good ones but what you lose in most of them is a power regulation circuit. That means that you're dumping the full power into the LED risking straining the battery (possibly causing a boom with a CR123) and the battery won't last half as long. This is what's called turbo mode in more expensive lights.

What you also sometimes see is serious overheating from driving the LED full tilt. This causes the LED to dim. I have one light that (aptly named the "Palm Blaze") that can just about raise burn blisters if you pick it up after it's been running for a while.

jgcoastie
March 17, 2009, 04:42 AM
I finally found a perfect fit... I was a t the local sporting goods store looking at Surefire lights for about $70 each. They offered 60 lumens/ 120 with replacement bulb for another $65. :eek:

My eyes wandered to the Browning "Tactical Hunter" display rack... Looked at their smaller ones, didn't like them. Settled my eyes on the Browning Tactical Hunter 210L. :D 210 LUMEN LED :D for just $79. This thing is BLINDING!!! Also came with three lens covers (red, blue, green) that stay attached very well unlike some others I've tried. If you see one on a display rack somewhere, I HIGHLY recommend that you pick one up and try it. You'll be amazed at the brightness. Uses two 123 3v batteries. The only downside is that it doesn't come with a holster (it does come with a sturdy belt clip, but it's hard to draw/replace easily). Buddy gave me his nylon Surefire case and it fits great.

rantingredneck
March 17, 2009, 07:37 AM
Coleman Cree XLamp

I'm a dedicated Surefire junkie, but I'll also chime in here with a plug for the Coleman Cree LED lights.

Several varieties to chose from and very good value for the money. Not as small as the OP was wanting, but for something to toss in a laptop bag or truck console as a spare they are great.

I have one in my laptop bag that has red/blue/white LEDs. No filter caps to lose just twist the bezel to get a different color. 75 lumens on white and IIRC, 15 on red or blue. They also have a white/red/green combination as well.

Hanging on the key rack by the door at my house is another Coleman with 75 lumen white LED only with a strike bezel similar to the Defender series surefires.

Nice lights for the money.

guns and more
March 17, 2009, 10:35 AM
Until you find the perfect expensive light, might I suggest you go to Lowe's and for $24 they have a LED flashlight that has 5 white LED's and a red led.
One button for white, another for red. Runs on 1 AA battery and is very lightweight. Not good for hitting someone over the head, but if you want to illuminate an area, this may be it. I even mounted one on my HD shotgun.
Super brite! Almost keychain size. (smaller than mini-mag, and 10 times as bright)

Rinspeed
March 27, 2009, 12:47 PM
Surefire G2 with Malkoff M60L is very hard to beat.

hihosilver
March 29, 2009, 05:01 PM
i bought a fenix that as big as a chapstick, so it is on me 24/7. Its about 60 lumens. I m a ME, but it impressed all of the Electrical engineers at work. Amazing how powerful that tiny flashlight is. I bought 2 on ebay for 37each