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Old August 29, 2002, 11:03 PM   #1
Kermit
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Weapon mounted lights...yea or nay?

I was all set to purchase a light for my USP...even put a deposit on one. Then was told about a back order & I got my deposit back. Anyway, I walked into a store today that had one & was kinda tempted to buy it. Only problem is, in the interim, I've "unsold" myself.
I already have a good house light, which I can use as in impact weapon if push came to shove, what are the advantages to having both a handheld light & a weapon mounted light or am I better off w/o it?
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Old August 30, 2002, 02:01 AM   #2
C.R.Sam
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I don't like the idea of pointing a muzzle toward sumpin untill I know whether I want to shoot it.

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Old August 30, 2002, 04:00 AM   #3
Hkmp5sd
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I've been thinking about getting one of the foregrips with light built in for my 870. Since it is my home defense weapon and would probably be used at night, seems like a good idea to combine the shotgun and flashlight into one tool.

Kinda undecided about putting one on a handgun.
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Old August 30, 2002, 06:59 AM   #4
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My concern would be how quickly one could turn the bullet magnet off while attached to your weapon in front of your face!
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Old August 30, 2002, 08:24 AM   #5
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The Drill usually goes... Illuminate (with pressure mounted switch), sweep looking for targets (a scound.. not more then 2), Un-Illuminate, move (left or right a few steps), repeat.
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Old August 30, 2002, 10:19 AM   #6
Kermit
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Is having this light on my USP going to increase or decrease my self defense options? I understand the tactical applications, but are they more than what I currently have w/ my hand held light?
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Old August 30, 2002, 10:30 AM   #7
Hemicuda
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I say "nay" as i like to be able to control my light and gun seperately...

I also like to holster my gun... and I don't think they make a concealable IWB for a desert eagle, which is what'd take to put my Beretta Mini-Cougar into an IWB with a light mounted on it...

I can easily handle a mini-maglight in my weak hand... and not have to worry about either problem...
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Old August 30, 2002, 02:01 PM   #8
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The idea of a gun mounted flashlight definitely has tons of coolness factor going for it, but it seems to be lacking in the practicality department. If I were responding to a situation in the dark were I envisioned myself needing a handgun, that would be a pretty serious situation indeed. And as such I would prefer to keep the light extended far away from body in the hopes of giving a false impression of were I am actually standing rather than close enough to my body as to give an assailant a good fix on my position.

Granted that in a narrow confines like a hallway, this would not be possible, but I still don't see how an attached light would give an advantage.

But like I mentioned above, definitely cool.
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Old August 30, 2002, 03:37 PM   #9
Double Naught Spy
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What most untrained folks (usually civilians) don't understand is that weapon lights are not for searching your home in the middle of the night with all the other lights off. I actually received defensive handgun instruction at a local range about the use of a flashlight or weapon mounted light to search my own home in the dark because I would have the advantage over the bad guy since he would not know his way around my house in the dark very well. In other classes, I have heard students question this point because they had read or heard about it somewhere.

The problem with handheld and weapon mounted lights is that they are extremely directional and the definitely will tell the bad guy where you are if he does not already know. SWAT teams and such use them and use them well because they take advantage of having several guys with lights and they each are responsible for a different direction or area of the room. Everyone is everyone else's safety to watch each others blind sides.

Weapon mounted lights are great for two handed operation guns like shotguns and rifles. It is hard to work a flashlight and weild a shotgun at the same time. Pistol mounted versions are handy as they allow you to still be able to point and shoot your gun one handed with the light on as your off hand performs other tasks such as opening doors, fending blows, etc.

For most civilians or people who don't have a SWAT team to assist them, flashlights and weapon lights are best used as supplemental light sources or as a primary light ONLY when there are not other sources of light or those lights cannot be accessed. They are great for looking under your car, in closets with bad lighting, the attic, a scan of the roof of your home at night, etc.

I have one on my shotgun at home. It is on my shotgun because it is an easy item to have on the gun and it will allow very quick access to high should I need it light in a situation where I think I might be in danger. It is better to have a light an not need to use it than vice versa.

"Bullet magnet"? Not really. If the light is a bullet magnet and you get hit, then quite likely you were NOT using the light in a prudent manner as Schmit noted above.
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Old August 30, 2002, 05:06 PM   #10
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I may get one because *IF* I had to get to one in a hurry, first I gotta snap awake, then I gotta find my glasses, then I gotta open the Simplex safe, then I gotta grab the gun, then I gotta grab the light...then which hand am I gonna hold the phone and call the po-po with?
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Old August 30, 2002, 06:19 PM   #11
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I'm planning to put a Surefire lamp on my USP for bedside duty and also keep my 6Z there. I can always choose to not use the weapon-mounted lamp. But it'll be good to have the option. As was mentioned, what do you do when you have to use the phone?

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Old August 30, 2002, 06:40 PM   #12
KSFreeman
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Schmit, BTDT, got plenty of tee-shirts. The question is whether a weapon-mounted light is a good idear or not. My answer is that it depends on how quickly one can turn the weapon-mounted light off. Hand-held I just have to take pressure off. Do I need to fumble with a switch or not with a weapon-mounted light?

00, yes, if you leave the light on, it will be a bullet magnet. As you say, some think that the light is for searching. Light=bullet magnet. As wise man in Tejas say, people shoot at you because they can see you. Your light identifies you and makes you a target. See, also, angel speech.

Kermit, you do mean for home defense right? That's what I took it for. I wouldn't get it either way. That's just me, YMMV.
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Old August 30, 2002, 07:57 PM   #13
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I thought the handgun weaponlights were pressure activated...can I still get a good grip and still keep the light off if need be?
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Old August 30, 2002, 11:39 PM   #14
Kermit
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First off, there are other people in my house, they can handle the 9-1-1 call. Option #2 here is to just dial and leave the phone. I'm guessing a faster response time if a 9-1-1 call is received w/o caller on the other end.
2nd, the Sure Fire I'm looking at has the pressure switch as an option so I'm looking at a unit that is always on or always off.
Practiced using my USP & hand held light this AM. My reality is that as a result of my newly acquired tendonitis, I have gotten proficient at shooting stronghand or weakhand only so multi-tasking & having a light in one hand and my USP in the other may not be that big a deal.
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Old September 1, 2002, 12:02 AM   #15
Andrew Wyatt
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I don't think having a flashlight mounted on a pistol is horribly important, since it's farly easy to use one with a handheld light.
(there are two good techniques for it, too: the rogers and the harries technique, I prefer the harries, but that's probably because I learned it from him.)

When a flashlight mounted on your weapon becomes important is when you're using a longarm. there it's not realy six of one. A weapon mounted flashlight is a must, because there's no good way to use a handheld light with a longarm.
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Old September 1, 2002, 12:15 AM   #16
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Like so many accessories for guns like night sights, higher capacity magazines, etc., it is best to have one, know how to use it and not need it than to need it and not have it. Weapon mounted lights simply represent another potential option to exercise in certain circumstances. That does not mean it must be exercised, only that the option is there.

This is really the same sort of argument made for carrying guns. I like having the option to carry if I so desire. If a bad situation arises, I would rather have a gun and decide not to use it than to need a gun when I don't have it with me.

With carrying a gun or having a weapon mounted light, there are some definite changes that come with those features if you decide to have them. Some are beneficial, some not so.
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Old September 2, 2002, 06:24 PM   #17
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The system put out by Break-free seems to cover all the bases. With their quick detach clip, you have have the light in your free hand, attached to a spare magazine, or snap it on your shotgun.

I'm considering a Quick-2-See mount for both my Mossy 500 and Wilson 47D mags. That would allow me to transition from one to the other, as the mood strikes.

I'd also point out that the flashlight can be set to 'broadcast' - to light up a large area and not focussed down to a laserbeam - so you could have your longarm at a low-ready position and still see and identify your suspect. No major covering. Just my two cents.
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Old September 2, 2002, 08:48 PM   #18
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Quote:
Option #2 here is to just dial and leave the phone. I'm guessing a faster response time if a 9-1-1 call is received w/o caller on the other end.
Well, I'm a LEO, and I rather doubt that this is true anywhere...it sure isn't true where I work.

911 calls are categorized by what is said to the call-taker.

If you call in to report that someone hit-skipped your car at the mall yesterday, your call is turned into a report-needed run, and is dispatched when your local car is clear. You'll likely also be told that 911 is for emergencies only.

If you call in to report a burglary in progress, that will get dispatched as an honest-to-goodness, balls-to-the-wall emergency run, and the whole precinct will be driving like idiots to get to your door.

Sidebar: people, nothing is as scary as an officer running lights-and-sirens...please, do get out of his way. Your insurance company will thank you. You see, in such a situation the defensive-driving mindset that we have all been raised with is replaced with a much simpler philosophy: "Yeah, I can fit through there."

*anyway*

If you call in and leave the line open, the call taker will try to hear what is going on. If it sounds like an emergency, it will be dispatched as such. If, on the other hand, all they can hear is your wife snoring while you shuffle off to fight crime and suppress evil in your rec room, that will get dispatched as a 911-open line call. Those are a dime a dozen. In theory, they are a priority run. In actuality they will often hold for quite some time (5-10 minutes is not unusal if there are no cruisers clear when you call in) before they get aired. And then the cops have to get from wherever they are to your house...and they probably won't be doing it at Warp Factor 10 like they would if you had taken the time to yell that you had an intruder.

Just FYI.

Mike
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Old September 7, 2002, 04:06 PM   #19
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You will NEVER see a light mounted on any of my guns. "Tactical wannabee" crap, or so I think.
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Old September 11, 2002, 04:13 AM   #20
BigMike
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I was one who thought weapons mounted light would be the best tool to augment my pistols. Soooo i got the Sure Fire Handgun Light for my Beretta Brig 92. Problem was, the light mount fit the regular size frame, but on my 92 it rubbed and created a marring on my slide. I shot my Beretta ONCE with the light mount on. There is still a thin layer of lead splatter on the end cap of my light mount I have yet to clean off. Now it just sits in my safe, doing nothing. Incredibly bright light though. I'll just use my mag-lite along with my Beretta, and If in the unlikely, but possible, event I lose my pistol in a scuffle I will do my best Mark McGuire.

Light on pistol, Yea or nea? Get what you want I guess. For me it is nea, maybe on my shotgun, someday...

What's a reasonable offer for a 6P weapons light, sure fire for a Beretta handgun? Maybe I can finance those Carbon Creation grips for my Beretta.

Hope this helps.

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Old September 11, 2002, 10:12 AM   #21
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You raised a very good question.

Each person's response has some degreee of validity.


The context of having and/or using a light is important. I am not law enforcement. I live in an urban area. I have no family. My skills level is high because I train a couple of days a month and have had night time handgun shooting classes, including a course at Surefire Institute.

The value to me of having a weapon mounted light is marginal. However, in a pinch, I would rather not have one hand occupied with a flashlight and the other with a handgun. My compromise has been to put lights on two weapon systems - one a long time ago is a surefire. The one in the last month is an M3 snap on shorty light for a Glock 19 which now requires a special holster. The system allows continuous on or impulse on and my grip on the Glock is not changed.

The context for me is a societal breakdown, not a burglar. There might be some currently unknown reason to have a better target identification.
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Old September 11, 2002, 05:10 PM   #22
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Hand gun, no ... can operate with "off" hand. Would consider it as an option on shotgun where you need both hands free to operate it. (Wouldn't necessarily turn it on right away.)

YMMV
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Old September 16, 2002, 03:15 PM   #23
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All of the reasons have been discussed already. I just wanted to chime in. I have a SureFire mounted on my 16" AR, but will go with a handheld 6Z when using my USP.
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Old September 16, 2002, 05:11 PM   #24
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You guys just KILL ME! Just 'cause you don't need one doesn't make those of us who feel we do a "tactical wannabe".

I have a UTL mounted on my USP, which is (for the most part) a dedicated nightstand gun. If I use it to shoot at the range, I leave the UTL at home.

WHY does it work for me? I have a flashlight "fetish" if you will. I can't seem to say "no" to a good flashlight. I keep 2 in every car, 3 or 4 at the house, some recharge, some use alkalines, etc... I usually keep at least 1 on my nightstand as well, but normally 2. One has a red filter, so if I need to find a shirt in the closet or shoes on the floor while my wife's still sleeping I don't have to wake her. But what almost ALWAYS seems to happen is, when I fumble around in the dark for that flashlight, I end up knocking it off onto the floor rather than actually grabbing it. It clunks down, or falls behind the nightstand, etc. THEN WHAT??? If I needed that light because there was a strange 'bump' in my kitchen?

Just a few clicks on the buttons and the door flies open on my D&S Enterprises handgun safe to reveal my USP40f... The Mepros look like a little airport runway that guide my hand right to it. The safe surrounds the pistol so I can't clumsily knock it over, off, etc. When the pistol comes out of the safe, the FLASHLIGHT IS ATTACHED A UTL can be detached in less than 1 second if I want it. And I'm not gonna rehash what Double Naught Spy said, but I mostly agree... I know my house better than you, and I probably won't even USE the light. But if I ABSOLUTELY NEED it, there it is.

And KSFreeman... it's a momentary switch. If I don't want the light any more, I let go with my middle finger. Also has an on/off switch to prevent flashlight "AD's".

Works for me... may not work for you. Doesn't make me ignorant, or a MAll Ninja (no offense to those who are ). Just makes me unique.
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Old October 2, 2002, 07:13 PM   #25
biere
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I live in the sticks and wild animals or animals people let loose like dogs that are going back to being wild are a problem.

A handgun with a light is my current search.

A trained dog on a leash in my other hand is useful as well.

The light is needed for final target line up or searching out dark areas.

Don't plan to use it anytime I need to search my house inside.

But for outside, they serve a purpose. Just another tool in my big huge roll around tool box.
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