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Best light for mechanic

Discussion in 'Flashlights & Other Illumination Devices' started by MillsHere, Jun 21, 2016.

  1. MillsHere

    MillsHere Loaded Pockets

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    After looking at work lights that run off of power tool batteries I've decided a flashlight is the route to go for working on cars at my job.

    I've found the Olight S10R Baton to be almost perfect for my needs but as always I'm curious if there is something else like it or better.

    I would like a rechargeable light preferably with a dock but a usb cable would be okay.
    It needs to be small enough for the pocket and have decent run times. Preferably a floody beam.

    What drew me to the S10R was the convenient recharging system and the magnetic base. Both of which are a huge plus for a work light.

    If there is something similar to this or even better I would like to hear your guys suggestions. Also if anyone owns the S10R and can tell me their thoughts that would be helpful.

    Thanks
     
  2. steeps

    steeps Loaded Pockets

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    In your line of work I would be concerned about dirt and grease preventing a good contact to charge after a while.
    I would be thinking towards a headlamp so your hands are free and the light is always where you're looking.
    You could then just get a set of Eneloop rechargeables here, http://amzn.to/28OrCUP
    This way you've always got a charged battery ready to swap out.
    The Fenix headlamp you could consider is here, http://amzn.to/28MpGf5
    I have the headlamp if you have any questions.
     
  3. rockerZz

    rockerZz Loaded Pockets

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    Definitely a combo, probably. A head lamp and a handheld would be good. The Nebo Larry with the SMD LED's super bright especially at about ten bucks, weird batteries. Buy 3, keep them in the tool kit.
     
  4. MillsHere

    MillsHere Loaded Pockets

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    I thought about a headlamp but I don't want to wear one all day or go and get it out of the toolbox when I need it.

    Also I specialize in electrical so I don't get too dirty.
     
  5. EZDog

    EZDog EDC Junkie!!!!!

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    I have been using an S15r for a while now and it would be great for you i think.
    I prefer the use if aa if i need more juice right away.


    Sent from my iPhone don't expect too much
     
  6. davidt1

    davidt1 Loaded Pockets

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    You didn't say what you will use the light for. Is it just to shine on things for a brief moment? Or will you use it to work hand-free for an hour or more?

    I worked in a car repair shop for a few years. When I had to use portable lights, it was always against strong ambient light that required a powerful light to punch through. For this reason I recommend a light that uses 18650 battery. This class of light will give you the brightness and run times ideal for a shop

    As for headlamps, you probably thought about the traditional design that is fairly bulky and has only one function. The newer angle headlamps can be detached from the headband and used as hand held, utility light, etc. I have used these angle lights less as headlamps and more as hand held and utility lights. Don't overlook these angle headlamps. These are some of the ways I have used these lights:

    As neck light. It's with me all day; tucked behind shirt when not needed; go up to the head when needed as a headlamp.
    [​IMG]

    Don't have to use it as a headlamp if you don't want to; there are plenty of other hand free uses.
    [​IMG]

    Very compact with a cord headband.
    [​IMG]

    Go to CPF for more info:

    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/forumdisplay.php?6-Headlamps
     
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  7. MillsHere

    MillsHere Loaded Pockets

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    I mainly use the flashlight for working underneath a vehicle with a creeper or while inside the vehicle.

    I'm still not interested in using a headlamp but now I'm looking into zebra lights and similar products after your suggestion. I like the floodyness they offer but still desire a way of hands free illumination.

    The only solution I've found so far besides a headlamp is the magnetic base of some Olights in which they will fit to just about anywhere I work.

    As far as batteries are concerned, I like the run times of an 18650 but would very much like to be small enough to pocket carry. On top of that a 18650 light is harder to fix to something than a smaller light.
     
  8. davidt1

    davidt1 Loaded Pockets

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    If you are set on getting a standard flashlight, then get one with a wide floody beam because the magnetic tail won't give you any beam angle adjustment unless you move the light around.

    Here are a flashlight with a magnetic tail and an angle light with a magnetic clip. Once set in place there is no way to adjust the beam angle of the flashlight. The angle headlamp, on the hand, offers unlimited beam angle adjustments due to the swiveling clip.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  9. mike3145

    mike3145 Loaded Pockets

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    My buddy is a mechanic and he uses a Craftsman rechargeable light. It's got bunch of LEDs for area lighting or it can also be used as a "spotlight."
     
  10. MillsHere

    MillsHere Loaded Pockets

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    I assume that's a zebralight? And from what I see they don't come with a magnet so did you install one yourself?
     
  11. MillsHere

    MillsHere Loaded Pockets

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    That actually looks like a pretty good work light. However I would still like to get a flashlight so I can make less trips to the tool box. Might pick that up though for the price.
     
  12. MillsHere

    MillsHere Loaded Pockets

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    That actually looks like a pretty good work light. However I would still like to get a flashlight so I can make less trips to the tool box. Might pick that up though for the price.
     
  13. mike3145

    mike3145 Loaded Pockets

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    Frankly the Craftsman work light isn't all that bright, certainly not close to any number of the decent flashlights on the market today. The biggest advantage I see is that it's physically large enough that it can be set down and not have to worry about it falling into some nook at the bottom of the engine compartment.
     
  14. Moffett

    Moffett Empty Pockets

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    I am a mechanic and use a led lenser m7r. It is rechargeable via a dock, it is always attached to my side on the included belt clip, has an adjustable beam to focus or flood, and lasts me all day between charges.
     
  15. davidt1

    davidt1 Loaded Pockets

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    I haven't checked in here for a while. That's a Zebralight. Yes, I put the magnets on.

    Looks like this up-close.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  16. MillsHere

    MillsHere Loaded Pockets

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    Nice job! I would never of thought of heat shrinking the magnets on.
     
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  17. Karmakanic

    Karmakanic Loaded Pockets

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    I don't think there is one best light for a mechanic. I use several, it depends on the task. I use various rechargeable led lights, small flashlights (Led Lenser, mini- Maglite), penlights, bendable lights and even the light on the bore-scope camera.
    Most used are the rechargeable inspection lights, the present day equivalent to what I believe US mechanics used to refer to as 'drop-lights'.
    It depends on the shop, light coloured or white walls, light grey floors and good lighting make a big difference.
    Some of the guys have 3-5 ft long extending inspection lamps, which clip to the underside of what you guys call the hood ( we Brits call it the bonnet).
     
  18. Radioactive_Man

    Radioactive_Man Loaded Pockets

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    My pick would be the a zebralight headlamp too, AA or 18650. The output levels are much better spaced, 50lm for 7.5 hours (AA version), 100lm for 3hr when you need more, or you can set med to 25lm if you find that adequate. The olight goes from 10lm (too low), 100lm (too high), 500/300 (way too high). The ZL has a nice floody beam, you can even get the frosted lens to make it a perfect flood. Do the magnet mod like David. You'll have a light that can be used in hand, attached with magnet, worn around the neck, or used as a headlamp for hands-free. That's a versatile light.
     
  19. MillsHere

    MillsHere Loaded Pockets

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    So, I just pulled the trigger on a Fenix RC09.

    Would of took a little more time to decide but my edc flashlights battery is out of commission so I needed a light kind of quick.

    I chose it because it simply had both the magnet and rechargeable feature I wanted very much. I was close to getting an Olight but reading reviews, I wasn't confident spending $60 or more on one.

    Once it gets here I'll probably post an update on how it performs for my needs at work.

    The ZL peaked my interest with its floody beam but unfortunately doesn't have a rechargeable feature available. I'd also prefer not to have to mod it even though davidt1's magnet add on was very nice.
     
  20. Kev2488

    Kev2488 Loaded Pockets

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    I don't understand the docking charging or USB charging. I use my lights and I don't want to have to put my light down and let it charge just take out the battery and put a new one in. That being said ZL H32w would be my choice and also for doing HVAC I use a Milwaukee m18 later best work light period and almost best light period. Also come in 12v which is smaller but runtime suffers. My work setup is HDS CRI 200 in pocket and ZL and M18 when I need area lighting and hands free. Just my opinion.