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Old March 16, 2006, 03:35 PM   #1
black bear 84
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Flashlights for self defense


As strange as it sounds, some flashlights are used for self defense quite often in daily life.
Sometimes by professionals Police Officers in a way to avoid using deadly force in confrontations with suspects, and other times by civilians that are not permitted to carry lethal weapons.

In the US we have it quite good in that we are allowed to carry short knives and some others implements but in the majority of Europe such activities are illegal or highly frowned upon by the authorities.

If you defend yourself with a baseball bat even in your own home in certain countries you have to give reason for why you have such an implement with you.

One of my flashlights that I promote in the States as the Search and Rescue 852 lumens to use in emergency vehicles such as ambulances, fire trucks, helicopters etc. because is too heavy and too long to be easily portable (it is based on the Maglite 4 D). I have found appreciative customers in the European market to be used as self defense tool by civilians that go out for a stroll or to walk the dog situations.

Other lights use others means of incorporating defense mechanisms in their construction. I am thinking now about the ARES Defense Companion, a Maglite with 3 cells that incorporates a shotgun of 410 gauge (only one picture is circulating in the Internet and I think is not in production) or the Tiger Light that incorporates a pepper spray canister, or the several models of Surefire that come with crenellated bezels (one example is the popular E2D executive Defender).

Surefire was the first (to my knowledge) at popularizing the crenellated bezel and the SureFire Institute offers a class in basic defensive tactics called “The power of Light” which is open to all qualified civilians as well as law enforcement professionals .
The course is taught by certified instructor Steve Tarani (shown below delivering a carotid strike).

My own MAG 951 II or the EXP 852 can be had with the optional heavy stainless steel crenellated bezel that I offer in a limited production run.
Such bezels add 3 ounces to the weight of the head and the bezel even that is not actually sharp will be a good imitation of the broken beer bottle.
I don’t think that an aggressor, if he is in his right mind, will confront such a weapon that first will blind him with 951 lumens and then is ready to rearrange his facial features.

Some handy accessories have been produced to increase the defensive use of the Maglite. I am thinking of a quality item made with great care and good materials called the Piggy Back; it will keep a container of Pepper spray quite handy by screwing the accessory to the end of the MAG tail-cap.

Or from the same company the accessory tail-cap with carbide insert capable of breaking automotive glass.

My own Quick Detach Swivel, when used only with the nub for the lanyard, can be very hard on skulls and noses.

This MAG 951 sports the heavy 3 inch head (the head is now out of production), more resembling a medieval mace. This is also a fantastic throw monster reaching over several hundred yards.

I have in my long association with the flashlight Industry seen a few models which spray OC from the front of the lens, flashlights that also incorporate a screaming siren, flashlights that incorporate a stun gun and others weird contraptions all of them gone from the market now.

What seems to prevail is just a good weight reliable flashlight that can be used as a baton or with the new crenellated bezels and the introduction of really powerful MEGA lights capable of blinding an assailant.

Best regards,
Black bear
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Old March 16, 2006, 03:50 PM   #2
UH1-D Rotorhead
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Give me my 6 C Cell...Maglight...

....perfect grip size, and packs a wallop...been to court many a time with the miscreant still wearing a turbin.
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Old March 16, 2006, 05:15 PM   #3
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the unarmed security guard's friend because it is - just a flashlight - not a weapon
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Old March 17, 2006, 07:47 PM   #4
Bennett Richards
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My favorite defense flashlight is my SureFire X200b which is right underneath the barrel of my USPc 40....
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Old March 19, 2006, 05:04 PM   #5
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I don't understand why the ones that use the CR123 batteries are so pricey. The Scorpion and other 6Volt lights. I can't see giving $80 to $100 for a flashlight. hpg
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Old March 20, 2006, 08:55 AM   #6
black bear 84
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I don't understand why the ones that use the CR123 batteries are so pricey. The Scorpion and other 6Volt lights. I can't see giving $80 to $100 for a flashlight. hpg

The high intensity bulbs brings heat issues that have to be resolved with better components, (aluminum reflectors, Pyrex lenses, high thermal resistance switches and others)

black bear
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Old March 20, 2006, 09:48 AM   #7
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It is just like custom knives or guns or anything. "Why buy a Kimber when you could buy a highpoint" Once you buy one you will never go back. I have had dozens of maglights and others which did little to impress me. I have a few surefirtes including an E2D and am ipressed everytime I use them. For the size of them they are extremely bright and are built like tanks. The batteries last a long time given the amount of light they put out. They are the kind of thing you could trust your life to if it came to it.
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Old March 21, 2006, 02:18 PM   #8
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When traveling I have a 3 cell maglight in between the drivers seat and center console of my truck. A Surefire E2D rides in the cupholder.
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Old March 22, 2006, 07:32 AM   #9
black bear 84
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At 60 lumens your Surefire E2D put out more than the Maglite 3 D on fresh batteries (39 lumens)
But the problem is not with the flashlight but with the alkalines batteries that we use. Even the best brands Duracell and Energizer can only hold up to full power (39 lumens) for 7 minutes when they quickly drop to 70 % output.
After one hour the batteries are giving only 50 % output or about 20 lumens and going sharply downhill from that.

Here is a graph that shows what I am talking about.

The solution is to modify the Maglite to use superbulbs and a 12 volts power source based on Nimhs batteries that keep voltage high to the end.
High quality parts have to be used, reflector, Pyrex lens, non melting switch parts and ceramic base for the super bulbs, along with Nimhs rechargeable batteries that have high amperage and high capacity.

The result is a light that put outs 951 lumens!!!
To put this in perpective it is more powerful and bright that a one million candlepower spotlight, such light will blind a person for a couple minutes.

The reach of the light is over 300 yards and the flood or side spill of these 951 lumens can illuminate an entire room as it were daylight.

black bear
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Old March 22, 2006, 12:25 PM   #10
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Blackbear can you offer more information on the mods to the Mag-lites for increased performance?
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Old March 22, 2006, 12:43 PM   #11
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I think a flashlight that size is the equivalent of planning to carry a rifle around for self-defense. It might be the best when you don't consider portability, but on a practical level you're simply not going to have it when you need it.

Personally, I prefer a 60 lumen or brighter LED light with a single 123 battery. Such a light is small enough to be with me all the time, bright enough to blind an attacker, and durable enough that I'm not going to be replacing bulbs every time I drop it.

Kathy Jackson
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Old March 22, 2006, 01:10 PM   #12
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Yes, maglights suck. But the big ones are undeniably better weapons than any surefire type thing. A maglite is a weapon, but a surefire truly is just a flashlight, regardless of some stupid spiked bezzle. If I lived in a European country with horrible weapon laws, my first goal would be to move. If I couldn't, and my best weapon option was a surefire, I would immediatly join a reputable self defence school.
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Old March 22, 2006, 02:42 PM   #13
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I'm really not worried about the power output of the Maglight. That's why I have a Surefire. To me, the intended purpose of the Maglight is to be used as a baton/club. The lightbulb is just an accessory.
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Old March 22, 2006, 04:06 PM   #14
black bear 84
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A few members of this Forum have my lights, here is the link to my thread in TFL, Forums.

The Best of Surefire is the Surefire M-6 (500 lumens six 123's batteries for a 20 minutes run time)
My MAG 951 II offers 45 minutes run rechargeable (so FREE to run) and 951 lumens or with the upgrade Rolls Royce carrier 1050 lumens.

Here is a shoot-out at 43 yards (camera at 15 yards)

Surefire M-6 500 lumens

MAG 951 II (951 lumens rechargeable)

Such light have been compared as to have a high beam truck light in your hand "but better".
If you look directly into the light you will see starts for 2 minutes, so any adversary is neutralized and blinded.

black bear
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Old March 23, 2006, 09:04 AM   #15
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boink! (well, maybe boink!, or maybe crush!)

Next to my bed, a 4-D MagLite (yes, and a gun )

But in my 'purse' a Scorpion........
"all my ammo is mostly retired factory ammo"
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Old April 13, 2006, 08:29 AM   #17
black bear 84
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And TAD GEAR also have three sizes of Crenellated bezels, they call them TIC (Tactical Impact Crown) but that most be a mistake, everybody knows that the device is to let light escape when you put the torch head down, thus preventing a fire situation.

black bear
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Old April 14, 2006, 12:31 AM   #19
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that sure is purty black bear...only problem is that it's only a dang flashlight, even if it looks like the flashlight of the gods.
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Old April 14, 2006, 01:27 AM   #20
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I would buy one and train with one of these lights, that is, if they didnt' cost me $600. I just can't justify that when I spent $75 more for my Kimber, which, at nighttime at least, makes flashes of pretty light as well as the deafening boom of the .45
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Old April 14, 2006, 02:23 AM   #21
Glock 31
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I use a surefire E2D Defender. Hasn't failed me yet.
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Old April 14, 2006, 02:29 AM   #22
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Didn't they use that thing in the movie "Krull"?

Or maybe it was "The Sword and the Sorcerer"...

Seriously, though. We talk in lots of threads about the acceptability of knives in normal everyday society, and some people say that nasty-looking knives are part of the problem we have with knife culture being accepted by the "sheeple"... and then we have to go and weaponize flashlights?

I'm sorry, I just don't see it. If some believe that a simple Kubotan is an effective defensive weapon, I don't see why a flashlight has to have, well, prongs sticking out from it. And nobody is fooled when we give a wink and a nod and say that they're "to let light escape when the flashlight is stood crown-down."

I think that there are things we can do to avoid negative attention.

I had no problem bringing an Inova T-2 on commercial flights back and forth FL to NY last year. If you want them to ban aluminum-bodied flashlights in toto, keep making weapon-flashlights like these. The first time one makes the news in a crime or a questionable defensive use, they will be added to the TSA's forbidden-items list. Mark my words.

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Old April 14, 2006, 04:01 AM   #23
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I don't think it is so much that flashlights are used often in self defense as much as saying small clubs or batons with lights are used in self defense. The light projection isn't what is working for the self defense aspect.

Black Bear 84 showed the TIDs. In reality, those are just heated ice scrapers that can be used at night where the light lets you see what you are doing and the xenon bulb produces heat to help loosen the ice that is being mechanically attacked by the bezel points.
"If you look through your scope and see your shoe, aim higher." -- said to me by my 11 year old daughter before going out for hogs 8/13/2011
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Old April 17, 2006, 06:46 AM   #24
black bear 84
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Concerning that Surefire E2D Defender I am going to quote a guy from another forum and his experience with that light.

[quote] I work as an EMT and carry a surefire E2D on belt in the field (I also have an M4 Devastator in my rig). I was attacked once by a gang member who lept up and put both his hands on my throat to choke me. I already had my flashlight out and gave him a swift strike to the rear of his left elbow with the large bezel. I swear he almost started crying by the time the police came in the room and tackled him. The officer who had been standing in the other room and saw it happen marveled at my little flashlight when it was all over. Said he was going to get one himself. I now always carry it whether I'm off or on duty. It comes in handy all the time and it's nice to have something hard and more effective than just a fist to defend yourself here in (anti-self-defense) california [quote/]

black bear
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Old April 19, 2006, 09:04 PM   #25
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I am sticking with my MagLight rechargable. This flashlight is a lot more powerful than a regular D battery model, and it stays charged. The burn time is longer than the regular model also. Being heavy, and clublike, it is very much good for defense. BTW, you can buy about 6 of them for the price of one of those fancy little Surefire lights.
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