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  • Rock Solid Led Flashlights

    At our local liquidation world store, there's a couple varieties of led flashlights for sale. One is a two D cell model that looks like its best use is for beating people over the head with it. Another one uses two C cells, yet another used two AAs. These are Victorinox brand, of swiss army knife fame. I'd be paying about $20 for the two AA model, which claims a 4.8 watt led. I saw one ad from an outdoor shop where they were being sold for US 133$. ! They are well made, no doubt, but are they worth it? I can't seem to find any real info on the led itself, but there seem to be lots these days in the 1 to 3 watt range which can be had for less than a buck apiece. I know some of you are into led lights- what might you have made using these devices, and does anyone have this particular flashlight?
    I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-

  • #2
    You just have to pick one you like and go for it.

    But first, drool here.
    Really spendy but I'm sure they are beautifully made and absolutely reliable.
    Mike

    My Dad always said, "If you want people to do things for you on the farm, you have to buy a machine they can sit on that does most of the work."

    Comment


    • #3
      Well, I certainly wouldn't pay $133 for one. $20, though, sounds like a good deal. The quality LED flashlights are really nice. I was lucky enough to find an Inova X5 a few years ago at about half price, and it's been great.
      ----------
      Try to make a living, not a killing. -- Utah Phillips
      Don't believe everything you know. -- Bumper sticker
      Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects. -- Will Rogers
      There are lots of people who mistake their imagination for their memory. - Josh Billings
      Law of Logical Argument - Anything is possible if you don't know what you are talking about.
      Don't own anything you have to feed or paint. - Hood River Blackie

      Comment


      • #4
        I guess it just depends on your intended use of the light. I've got two freebies from HF and one Outback that uses three AA batteries. They work great for my needs around the home and shop.

        Comment


        • #5
          Well, I really really really wanted the SureFire flashlight, but I couldn't justify the $557 for the matching pen. So- I made Victor Inox happy and bought the Swiss Army flashlight instead.

          It is a really nice flashlight, feels good and solid, and the light is quite powerful and warm toned, vs the cold bluish light that many leds put out. Typical of leds, the dispersal pattern is smooth and even, and this one also has a center spot that is well rendered.

          This is probably the only time I will spend $20 for a flashlight, but that's ok. I have a design coming around in my head for some single led keychain lights, which I plan to make several of since I have lots of those 3v lithium cells on hand to power them. There will be something wrong with me if I can't make them less than 3/4 wide by 13/16 inch long in total. The batteries are 7/16 diameter by 1/2 inch long.

          For now, I have this cool flashlight to play with.
          I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by MotorradMike
            You just have to pick one you like and go for it.

            But first, drool here.
            Really spendy but I'm sure they are beautifully made and absolutely reliable.
            They are. I have a few of their LED models. Built like a brick - a nicley crafted brick, mind you.

            Some caveats - 4.8 Watts out of 2 AA's is a lot to ask of the batteries. They'll be sucked dry pretty quickly. Also, the head/housing will get hot.

            The better the flashlight, the better the beam. The 1-5 dollar versions may have 9-LED's and perform better as a small flood light than a flashlight. Look at the reflector housings. The better ones have what looks like a dimpled reflector. This is harder to make, thus more costly but the light comes out much more evenly as a beam with no discernible hot spots.

            If I ever see LED strips dirt cheap, I'll get some and install some lighting in the back of my Honda Pilot. Those little interior lights that Honda supplies just aren't enough.

            Walt
            Apex, NC

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            • #7
              Modern LED lights are quite dependable. The better ones have all the electronics set in epoxy so that dropping them does not cause any components to break loose.

              I carry one that was less than $75 (Fenix p2d R100) , lasts for hours on one battery and can light up the house 3 doors down when I hear a noise. Oh. It's about 3 inches long and less than an inch in diameter.

              But if you want crazy... http://flashlight-forums.com/index.php?topic=4759.0
              The light in the first picture sells for $240. There is a gold version that is much more.

              The lights in the 4th picture represent several generations of lights and, when new, ran over $1000 for the handful.

              But if you want sick... look at this one...
              http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...d.php?t=281167

              Yep, Over $900 for a flashlight that fits in the palm of your hand.


              Quite reasonable, if you ask me.

              Dan
              At the end of the project, there is a profound difference between spare parts and extra parts.

              Comment


              • #8
                Yeah, ok then. I feel so cheap- I only paid about 4 times more for mine than I ever paid for a flashlight before.


                Was at Wallyworld last night and saw some screw-in replacement 'bulbs' in led format. One I was looking at said it was a 40 watt equivalent, using just 3.5 watts or something. It had normal looking leds mounted on a circuit board, standing off the board by at least 1/4 inch for many of them, and higher for the rest of them. There had to be 60 or more leds on the board. These look like normal leds except for being a bit shorter than the typical 3mm ones. This is 4 or 5 white leds for each buck you spend, and they come with their own carrying case and test setup Might be able to get them for less at DealExtreme, but this is a pretty good deal if you just wanted a bunch of single white leds to make into a ring light or whatever. I can walk into a local store and have them in my hand in minutes, no shipping costs. What could be easier-
                I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-

                Comment


                • #9
                  Maglite XL100 LED flashlight

                  I'd like to recommend the Maglite XL100 LED flashlight. I bought one a few months ago and really like it.

                  The unit is very bright (83 lumens, 4484 cd) and it has a dimmable continuously variable output to adjust the light output to your needs. The unit is so bright that you can't use it for close in work at full output. The dimming feature is a real help. At full output it lasts over 5 hours. At the lowest output it lasts over 200 hours. The reflector has one of the best focused beams that I have seen in a LED flashlight. The size 4.75 x 1 inch diameter and uses 3 AAA batteries.

                  The unit has several modes: Normal on/off with variable brightness.
                  A variable frequency strobe output (good for viewing rotating machinery etc.)
                  There is also an "SOS" mode, which flashes the morse code characters.

                  Another nice feature is a night light mode, where it barely puts out some light, but the instant you pick it up it turns on to full output.

                  The unit is a bit pricey at about $44.00, but worth the price.
                  The Homely Despot carries the unit.

                  fixxit
                  457863656C73696F7220212000

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Time to go have a look at Deal Extreme. Flashlights are how they got started and are their bread and butter. They have everything there is to have from the best to the cheapest and the largest to the smallest. The have every single part available for building and modifiying your own any way you want. They also have the top of the line flashlights that are over 1000 lumens.

                    The unit is very bright (83 lumens, 4484 cd)
                    83 lumens is nothing these days. My Flashlight-O-Death® is about 600 and I am considering upgrading it to 1200 lumens.





                    It's bright enough it makes the air glow blue.

                    Last edited by Evan; 09-14-2010, 04:29 AM.
                    Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      No offense Dan, but I really don't understand the CandlePower guys Collecting flashlights seems an hobby, this coming from a guy with a really weird hobby

                      Flashlight nuts talk about their EDC's (ever day carry). I carry a pocket knife, but how often during the day do you need a flashlight??

                      I also see flashlight nerds talking about tactical lights a lot. Are the guys on CandlePower forums really in SWAT teams?
                      Last edited by lazlo; 09-14-2010, 09:40 AM.
                      "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did."

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        but how often during the day do you need a flashlight??
                        All the time. Just a dark shadow area in an enclosed space such as an engine compartment is a lot easier to see with some directed bright light.
                        Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Evan
                          All the time. Just a dark shadow area in an enclosed space such as an engine compartment is a lot easier to see with some directed bright light.
                          Good point -- depends on what you do for a living I use flashlights all over the shop, but I've never needed on in front of a Linux workstation
                          "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did."

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I never thought I'd want to carry a flashlight, either. I got the Inova X5 to have in the car, but at some point got to carrying it in my pocket for a few days. I was amazed at how many times I used it. Now I carry it all the time.
                            ----------
                            Try to make a living, not a killing. -- Utah Phillips
                            Don't believe everything you know. -- Bumper sticker
                            Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects. -- Will Rogers
                            There are lots of people who mistake their imagination for their memory. - Josh Billings
                            Law of Logical Argument - Anything is possible if you don't know what you are talking about.
                            Don't own anything you have to feed or paint. - Hood River Blackie

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by lazlo
                              No offense Dan, but I really don't understand the CandlePower guys Collecting flashlights seems an hobby, this coming from a guy with a really weird hobby

                              Flashlight nuts talk about their EDC's (ever day carry). I carry a pocket knife, but how often during the day do you need a flashlight??

                              I also see flashlight nerds talking about tactical lights a lot. Are the guys on CandlePower forums really in SWAT teams?

                              Tactical? It's really just a description, sort of like 'engine lathe'. There are some LEOs (Law Enforcement Officers) on CPF (CandlePowerForums) but most are almost normal people.

                              How many times a day do I use it? Several times on most days. As you get older, brighter is better. A multi level output (really low to real high) makes it much more useful than you'd imagine. Some unexpected uses:

                              1) In the grocery store, using it to highlight the exact piece of fish I want in the display case from 3 feet away (big display case). Much easier than "Left, left , no! the other left!"
                              2) Looking into the guts of the Linux workstation under my desk.
                              3) Examining the quality of tools at Harbor Freight before I buy them.
                              4) Looking for that damn splinter in my finger
                              5) Signaling to my wife from a quarter mile away in front of the airport as she's driving around that huge loop where they don't let you stop.
                              6) Finding the door when the power goes out and you're in an unfamiliar bathroom in a San Francisco skyscraper. Absolute dark.
                              7) Changing the battery on the other flashlight from the other pocket.
                              8) Selecting a shirt of an appropriate color in the morning as my wife sleeps a few feet away. Green, blue and red are the same color at 5 AM.

                              Most of the time I use the light for a few seconds at a time. The battery lasts me many months.

                              Dan
                              At the end of the project, there is a profound difference between spare parts and extra parts.

                              Comment

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