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Penlights - What are the options?

Discussion in 'Flashlights & Other Illumination Devices' started by 50ft-trad, Jul 4, 2010.

  1. 50ft-trad

    50ft-trad Loaded Pockets

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    New job - new EDC requirements!

    I'm looking for options on variable output pen torches / penlights. I've seen the Fenix LD05 which looks like it might fit the bill, but wondered what the other options are.

    The purpose of the light is inspecting bores on large machined components, most of which will be less than 6m (20ft) long but there are some which may be 10m (33ft) long. I'm thinking a pen torch might be better for ease of carry and also avoid blocking line of sight on smaller bores (1.5" Dia etc). I'm looking for variable output so I can chose the correct level for the job. For example I might need to read a DTI (Dial test indicator) 500mm away to 5m away down a bore without too much glare. Obviously with being an engineering environment I need something fairly robust as there will be contact with oils, and the occasional knock- especially if I drop it when climbing into a gearbox during maintenance work (DOH!! - has been known)

    Unusual application I know, but I'm sure you guys will have the answers ;-)
     
  2. ACHË

    ACHË Loaded Pockets

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    QUARK Preon



    It sounds like one of the Quark Preon lights would meet those requirements perfectly:
    -Small
    -Rugged
    -Adjustable Output

    Plus they are bright enough to be used as a regular EDC light and not just an inspection tool.


    Streamlight Stylus Pro

    The Streamlight Stylus Pro is another alternative. It's not as bright and only has one reasonably set level but it also costs less.(about $20!)

    There are several other small lights which could do the job (Maratac AAA, Nitecore EZAA, ITP's, etc) but whenever I use a light for inspecting, the longer length of 2 two inline cells makes them much more comfortable to handle in use.
    I don't do machining inspections but have worked on similar applications where it's a cramped narrow space where a thick light with a an overly bright output just made things harder.

    Hope this helps.
     
  3. FreestyleAssassin

    FreestyleAssassin Empty Pockets

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  4. seawolf69

    seawolf69 Empty Pockets

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    I would go with the Quark Preon 2 too. I believe it has 170 OTF lumens max.
     
  5. DemskeetSkeet

    DemskeetSkeet Loaded Pockets

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    The preon 2 is substantially brighter than the Preon 1.

    The ones I have had much success with were the following:

    Streamlight brand:
    Microstream(x1 AAA) and Stylus Pro(x2 AAA) Only have one brightness setting.

    Quarks brand:
    Preon 1(x1 AAA, it comes as a twist light but you can add a Tail click for around $15) and Preon 2(x2 AAA with a much brighter output than the Preon 1, approx. 170 Lumens on high).

    One of my favorites is the Microstream by Streamlight with a Fenix LD01 head. Simple really, slowly heat and twist the head of the Microstream with a heat gun to loosen the glue up, clean the threads and twist the Fenix head on for multiple modes. What's better about the "Fenixstream you ask??" Indestructible pocket clip, rubber tail switch, and multiple modes. The Fenix LD01 is not worth it with what it comes with but with a Microstream or Stylus Pro body you get an excellent proficient flashlight for all of your needs.

    I picked my Preon 1 up from Jim at Howesknifeshop:

    http://www.howesknifeshop.com/4SEVENS-LIGHTS/c155/index.html?page=1
    http://www.howesknifeshop.com/4SEVENS-LIGHTS/c155/index.html?page=2

    If you go with the Preon 1 and what a tail click option added just email Jim to see if he has any extra(he did last Saturday).

    Here is my review on the Preon 1:
    http://edcforums.com/showthread.php/74946-Preon-1-Review-overview-(Pictures-included)?p=919656&viewfull=1#post919656
     
  6. jp2515

    jp2515 Loaded Pockets

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    4Sevens Preion I & II
    Streamlight Stylus Pro & Microstream
    Icon Solo
    Eagletac PN20A2
     
  7. Monocrom

    Monocrom Loaded Pockets

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    I've been EDCing a Fenix LD05 for a couple of weeks. Bit bigger overall than my Preon II model. Turns on in medium mode first. High produces a gorgeous beam. Not as bright as the high on a Preon II, (160 OTF) but still quite impressive.
     
  8. 50ft-trad

    50ft-trad Loaded Pockets

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    Thanks guys, great feedback.

    Interested to hear the Preon is slightly smaller than the LD05 despite having more oomph. It does seem to ride a little higher accoring to the pics I've seen, so possibly higher chance of accidental use (maybe?). How would these two feel with oily hands? Are we talking wet soap here or is there any traction on them? The DIY "fenixstream" would actually be quite a minty option over here unfortunately (around £53 GBP)

    @ Monocrom - any specific reason you chose to carry the Fenix over the Preon?

    The Eagletac and Icon look a little "clunky"
    Stylus Pro looks good for ergo's/oily hands, and ride height - good choice of level but still limited function
    Preon looks good for range, power and well ... looks
    LD05 looks good for range, power and ride height - but I think the preon (red) has it on aesthetics AND visiblity
    The EMT disposables look very good for sheer abusability (prob not a real word, but hey) - am actually tempted to look into these for promotional items, and shop floor issue

    The LD05 and Preon are pretty much the same price here too, so I'm thinking its currently Preon, Stylus Pro or maybe even disposables - I can hear Google calling .....
     
  9. Monocrom

    Monocrom Loaded Pockets

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    Mainly 4 reasons.

    1- I prefer the UI on the LD05 over the one on my Preon II. Preon = Low/Med./High while LD05 = Med./Low/High.

    2- Tailcap switch on the Fenix is more solid. The tailcap cover on the Preon II feels like something you'd find on a .99 cent light. It's thin, and feels flimsy. Gives an otherwise quality light a feeling of being cheap. And, the tailcap cover rotates 360-degrees in place. That got too annoying for me. My Preon II is currently set up with the flat tailcap from a Preon I. Turns the light into a twisty only model, but no more annoying tailcap issues. 4sevens has come up with a new tailcap design that is more low-profile. Unfortunately, they chose not to fix the annoying rotation issue. When it comes to tailcap switches, Fenix did a much better job.

    3- Heat dissipation is another issue. The LD05 is just better at it. Most likely has to do with the thicker aluminum body over that of the Preon II, and the fact that the Fenix's high-mode is not as high as on a Preon II.

    4- The pocket clip on the LD05 is sturdier.
     
  10. storl

    storl Loaded Pockets

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    Yeah, the LD05 and Preon 2 are your best options. I also personally prefer the LD05, for the same reasons mentioned above. Medium is what I use 90% of the time, so I like a light that comes on in medium first.
     
  11. DemskeetSkeet

    DemskeetSkeet Loaded Pockets

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    I have yet to have any "accidental" use with my preon 1 and it rides clipped to my back pocket with the clicky exposed.

    I do not prefer the Fenix over the preon because it does not have the tail click unless you put the head of the fenix onto the streamlght stylus pro or microstream as stated.

    I do have a thread here on EDCF that shows the "Fenixstream."

    I'll find it for you.

    Here is a post by Kaniele finding my thread with a link as well as the CPF link to the thread over there:


    http://edcforums.com/showthread.php/74743-Kaniele-s-EDC?p=917553&viewfull=1#post917553
     
  12. 50ft-trad

    50ft-trad Loaded Pockets

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    Thanks for the expansive answer Monocrom, really sets these two lights apart.

    Thanks Storl, I can see that being of benefit to me too

    Demskeet, the LD05 does appear to be a clicky very much like your finished mod in fact (as if on a stylus pro body) ... are we discussing the same light with the Fenix LD05 or did you mean the clicky is somehow different?
     
  13. DemskeetSkeet

    DemskeetSkeet Loaded Pockets

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    I was confused, I thought they were talking about the fenix light to swap the heads out for the "Fenixstream" mod.

    I did not know that Fenix had a pen type flashlight until now.
     
  14. 50ft-trad

    50ft-trad Loaded Pockets

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    No probs, thanks for all your feedback. Fenix must have seen the mod and thought "we could do that" :-P
     
  15. MedXLT

    MedXLT Empty Pockets

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  16. 50ft-trad

    50ft-trad Loaded Pockets

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    Thanks for your help everyone - have just placed an order for the Fenix LD05.

    Monocrom won me over on the sturdiness aspects, especially considering the working environment - and concur with storl on with preferred (most used level) first.
    Besides, I am a HUGE fan of my PD20, so if that is anything to go by ...

    Thanks again guys
     
  17. 50ft-trad

    50ft-trad Loaded Pockets

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    OKAY!!!!!!

    Fenix LD05 duly arrived - very pleased with it - ideal light levels etc - Brilliant.

    However ...

    I was using it and happened to scratch my ear with the same hand. The emitter head makes a noise on the lowest setting - like a kind of buzzing. Is this normal? I know this is an odd request, but could other LD05 users please just have a quick listen to their flashlights (I never thought I would type those words - LOL)

    Cheers 50ft-trad
     
  18. adimag

    adimag Loaded Pockets

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    Yes, that is normal. It is inductor whine that happens as it receives different power levels. The amount of noise you will hear varies from brand to brand and even from light to light of the same brand and model.
     
  19. 50ft-trad

    50ft-trad Loaded Pockets

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    Thanks adimag,

    It was making different noises on the two lower levels, and nothing on the highest so I reached for my PD20 which was silent on all levels. At that point I started wondering if I'd bought a lemon.

    Thanks for your quick reply :-D
     
  20. Monocrom

    Monocrom Loaded Pockets

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    Yes, quite normal on low. But it is very minor. I'm not an old man but unless I'm holding the head of the light right by my ear, I don't hear anything.