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help me choose my edc light (mailman)

Discussion in 'Flashlights & Other Illumination Devices' started by ItchyD, Jul 24, 2012.

  1. ItchyD

    ItchyD Loaded Pockets

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    Recommend a Flashlight Checklist: (Don't worry about all the questions, just the ones you feel strongly about!) Please mark "x" inside the [ ] to indicate your choice and please delete the options that you are not at all interested in.

    1) Short Essay Question: What do you intend to use this light for?

    I'm a mailman, sometimes I deliver in the dark, especially around Christmas. I'm a rural carrier so the time I need a light is when I'm walking from the vehicle to the front door. I deliver six days a week, every week of the year so every type of weather Pennsylvania has to offer the light will experience.


    2) What Region/Country/State will the light be purchased in?
    [x ] I will be mail-ordering or buying online, so this doesn't matter.
    [ ] I am in _______(country) and __________(state/providence).

    3) Price Range: An easy question, but you may change your mind after answering the rest! :broke:
    [ ] $1-15
    [x] $15-30 is ideal
    [x] $40-60 is ok
    [x] $80-$120 only if it was a huge upgrade
    [ ] I have no limit!

    4) Format:
    PART A
    [x ] I want a flashlight.
    [ ] I want a headlamp.
    [ ] I want a lantern.
    [ ] I want a portable spotlight.

    PART B
    Length:
    [ x] 1-2 inches. (Keychain sized could go 3" if it was rigged for a keychain)
    [ ] 2-4 inches. (Pocket carry)
    [ ] 4-9 inches. (Holster carry)

    PART C
    Width:
    [ ] I prefer a long narrow light.
    [ ] I prefer a short wide light.
    [x ] Doesn't matter.

    PART D
    Weight:
    Lights of a similar size can be very different in weight and may turn the perfect sized light into a paper weight. In general a lights of the same size will stack up like this; plastic and aluminum will be your lighter choices brass, stainless steel, bronze will be heavier. I won't put numbers here because everyone has a different weight sensitivity. For the purposes of EDC specifically I'll limit the choices here to the more easily carried sizes pick 2 sizes to represent a range of weight.
    [x ] Very light, can't tell it's there.
    [ x] Light, no heavier than a few keys or a small car remote.
    [] Medium light, about the weight of a AAA MiniMag
    [ ] Medium, slightly heavier than a AA MiniMag
    [ ] Heavy Medium, can of Coke
    [ ] Heavy, PDA or small digital camera

    5) What kind of "bulb".
    [ ] LED - more rugged, unlikely to burn out in your lifetime, less accurate color rendition, in general less output but more efficient (longer runtimes)
    [ ] Incandescent - can be very bright, more accurate color rendition, burn out or can be damaged more easily, shorter runtimes, very noticeable dimming as batteries deplete
    [ ] HID - like new car headlights in color, very, very bright, can be had in lights as small as a Mag 2 D cell but generally larger spotlight sized lights, no dimming turns off when battery depletes
    [ x] Don't care, just want the best fit for my needs.

    6) What batteries do you want to use? Alkaline batteries are easier to find and less expensive but don't pack as much stored energy and are don't work well in cold temperatures. Lithium batteries have long shelf life (10+ years, great for stored emergency lights) and are not as affected by cold but must be kept dry and are more expensive. Rechargeable start expensive, but if used frequently pay off quickly.
    [ x] I want common Alkaline batteries. (AA, AAA, C, D)
    [ x these are a 2nd choice] I want lithium batteries. (coin cells, CR123, AAA, AA...)
    [ ] I want a rechargeable system. (an investment, but best for everyday use)

    7) How much light do you want? Sometimes you can have too much light (trying to read up close up with a 100 lumen light is impossible).
    [x ] I want to read a map, find a light switch/keyhole, or get around the house at w/o disturbing anyone. (5-10 lumens)
    [ x] I want to walk around a generally paved area. (15-20 lumens)
    [ x] I want to walk unpaved trails. (40 lumens)
    [ ] I want to do Caving or Search & Rescue operations. (60+ lumens)
    [ ] I want to light an entire campground or dazzle an intruder. (100+ lumens)

    8) Throw vs Flood: Which do you prefer, lights that flood an area with a wide beam, or lights that "throw" with a tightly focused beam? Place an “X” on the line below. Sometimes a flood is better particularly closer up or indoors. You won't have to "sweep" the light back and forth to see what you need to see. You can also just set it down pointing the general direction rather having to point it right at that which you are working.

    Throw (distance)----------------------|----------------------Flood/close-up

    9) Runtime: Not over-inflated manufacturer runtime claims (like some LED lights). but usable brightness measured from first activation to 50% with new batteries. Understand that runtime is a function of brightness and capacity of your batteries. If you want 6 hours you'll either have big batteries or dimmer light, they haven't made a setup yet that lights up like the sun, runs all night, and fits in your watch pocket. ;)
    [ ] 20 min. (I want the brightest light for brief periods)
    [ ] 60-240 min. (1-2 hours)
    [x ] 240-360 min. (4-6 hours)
    [ x] 360+ min. (More than 6 hours)

    10) Durability: Generally the old phrase “you get what you pay for” is very accurate for flashlights.
    [ ] Not Important (A “night-stand” light.)
    [ ] Slightly Important (Walks around the neighborhood.)
    [ x] Very Important (Camping, Backpacking, Car Glove-box.)
    [ ] Critical (Police, Fire, Search & Rescue, Self-defense, Survival.)

    11) Switch Type:
    [ x] I don't care.
    [ ] sliding switch (Stays on until slid back.)
    [this is preferred not vital ] clickie switch. (Stays on until pressed again.)
    [ ] momentary switch. (Only stays on while held down.)
    [ ] rotating switch

    12) Switch Location:
    [x ] I don't care.
    [ ] I want a push or sliding switch on the body near the head.
    [ ] I want a push switch on the back end of the body.
    [ ] I want a rotating head switch.
    [ ] I want a rotating end-cap switch.
    [ ] I want a remote control.

    13) Operational Modes: Check all that apply.
    [ x] A simple on-off is fine for me.
    [ ] I want 2 light levels. (Brighter/short runtime and Dimmer/long runtime.)
    [ ] I want multiple light levels. (some lights have 5-16 light levels.)
    [ ] I want a strobe mode. (blinks to show location.)
    [ ] I want a tactical strobe. (Flashes rapidly to disorient an opponent.)
    [ ] I want S.O.S. flashing

    14) Is it important whether the body is metal or plastic/composite? In this case "plastic" and it's variants does not mean "cheap" or poorly made. In many applications a plastic bodied light is preferable, hard use and water resistance comes to mind; think caving or lights that get dropped or abused.
    [x ] I don't care.
    [ ] I want a metal-bodied light.
    [ ] I want a plastic/composite light.

    15) Special Needs: Is there anything else you want or need that hasn't been mentioned? Circle any below or write in your own comment(s).
    [ ] Red (night vision preserving) filter
    [ ] Other filter colors (Amber, Green, Blue, _________)
    [x any kind of water resistance would be nice] Waterproof – how deep: _____________
    [ ] Non-reflective/dark finish (stealthy/hard to find)
    [ ] Polished silver or brightly colored finish (for easy locating)
    [ ] Corrosion resistant or hard-anodized finish
    [ ] “Hybrid” light (bright incandescent combined with long running LEDs)
    [ ] Built-in second (or spare) lamp or filament
    [ ] Belt/Jacket clip
    [ ] Holster
    [ ] Wrist/Neck Lanyard
    [ ] Kuboton/self defense features
    [ ] Non-sparking Intrinsically Safe (IS) for use in explosive environments
     
  2. k.o.milo

    k.o.milo Loaded Pockets

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    Maratac AAA :)
     
  3. Sriracha

    Sriracha Loaded Pockets

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    If you want a flashlight style device, and it will be pocket carry, and you dont want to change batteries alot... 4Sevens Preon2 . Tail clicky, long low runtime, water proof. I would get a clicky, one handed operation might be handy when carrying a large Christmas delivery.
     
  4. ItchyD

    ItchyD Loaded Pockets

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    2 AAA is probably too big, I'd really like to stick this thing on my keys
     
  5. Sriracha

    Sriracha Loaded Pockets

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    Are you a Juggalo? If not, ignore my question. IMHO, the Preon 1 w/ a clicky is keychinable, but so is the MINICR123, but I chewed through the aluminum with keychain carry and had to retrofit a lanyard. A swivel would have helped.
     
  6. ItchyD

    ItchyD Loaded Pockets

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    I like the looks of the copper light, and the price is ok but:
    • Low mode, 1.5 lumens output for upto 50 hours
    • High mode, 115 lumens output for upto 65minute
    Both modes seem useless, high mode is too brief, and low mode is nowhere near bright enough.

    I see a nicer medium mode on the rev1 lights is this still available on rev2? Even if it is I'm not sure I want to be fiddling with 3 settings on a rotating switch.
     
  7. ItchyD

    ItchyD Loaded Pockets

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    no juggalo
     
  8. Gnarly
    • In Omnia Paratus

    Gnarly Loaded Pockets

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    Lumapower EDC LM31. Uses 1 X AA.
    Lil' brother is LM21. Uses 1 X AAA.
     
  9. reppans

    reppans Loaded Pockets

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    I think you should just look a the Fenix lights on the EDC Forum Store. The E series are cheap, tiny, simple, one or two mode lights, at various lumen levels in AAA or AA sizes... lots of flavors to choose from.
     
  10. veeks62

    veeks62 Loaded Pockets

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    EagleTac D25A Clicky. Single AA, decent runtime, keychain-able, and it's a Clicky!!
     
  11. hatchetjack

    hatchetjack EDC Junkie!!!!!

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    When I worked as a USPS Rural Carrier, I carried a Surefire E1B. Later, I started using a Petzl headlamp. Much easier to have both hands free especially when things got slippery or icy in winter.
     
  12. k.o.milo

    k.o.milo Loaded Pockets

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    rev.1 got 18 lumen at med. And med. is coming on first (med-low-high) Runtime, about 4.5-5 hours
     
  13. AcesQ

    AcesQ Loaded Pockets

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    Fenix LD01?
     
  14. ItchyD

    ItchyD Loaded Pockets

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    http://www.eagletac.com/html/d25am/specs.html
    actually it looks like it's not clicky?

    ok my revised specs are:
    the longest lasting at 11+ lumens, aaa, clicky
     
  15. Racer

    Racer Loaded Pockets

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    Streamlight Microstream

    [​IMG]
     
    AcesQ and KAMM like this.
  16. veeks62

    veeks62 Loaded Pockets

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    You're right about that! :oops: Posted that link mainly to show runtime specs. Good luck with your search!
     
  17. ItchyD

    ItchyD Loaded Pockets

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    so I bought a cqg s1, streamlight nano, and a fenix e01

    Anyone know the stats on the cqg?

    I also saw some aaa's with green luminous tailcap clickies while I was searching but I can't remember what they were, anyone know of them?

    If none of those please me I might spring for a jetbeam e3s....
     
  18. Racer

    Racer Loaded Pockets

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  19. Flash Owl

    Flash Owl Loaded Pockets

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    i might be too late...

    but how about a right angle light?
    i have a zebralight h501w that i often clip to the inside of my front shirt pocket.
    i simply reach over, click it on, illuminate everything in front of me while still havent use of both arms.

    i also have a sunwayman L10A that i like clipping to either side of my belt.

    works well because i never have to fumble around grabbing my light from my pocket or keys, never have to put the light away. never use my hand to hold onto the light, and turning it off and on is quick and easy. the light is always really for use.
     
  20. Nihility

    Nihility Loaded Pockets

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    I have a 4sevens Quark MiniX that seems to fit all of your criteria fairly well. It is super small and light. It has a low mode that can go for days on a single battery, a medium mode that could easily light up walkways, and a high mode that could light up an entire yard or campsite if necessary (or maybe cut through some bad weather). The twisty switch isn't ideal, but it's still a great light and I would highly recommend it.