Tactical Torture Tests
A thousand lumens in the palm of your hand
There's a metric ton of lights out there that claim to be tactical lights. Some claim they're tactical because they are small. Some because they're super-bright. Others because they fit some design elements. But most of them don't stand up to excessive wear-and-tear. They fall apart easily or simply don't have what it takes. So we decided to test one light claiming to be a tactical flashlight.
Turns out, the Rechargable Tactical Flashlight from Ultimate Survival Essentials was harder to defeat than we thought. Even pushed to the breaking point, it still held up to a significant amount of repetitive, heavy abuse. Easily more than you'd expect to put it through during average use.
Blinded by the (rechargeable Tactical) light
The first impression is bright to say the least. Of course, the instinct is to look at the light as you turn it on. It's okay. The blindness is only temporary. But extremely effective from a tactical standpoint.
When we stopped seeing spots, we spent some time looking it over. The flashlight has a few tap options including a full bright mode, strobe, and S.O.S.-pattern illumination.
The frame is a simple aluminum cylinder with a removable butt end for the battery cavity, which can accept up to 3-AAA batteries or a single Ultrafire 42 MAh battery. It also has a telescoping lens that is screwed to the frame and slides with a controllable ease. It uses two simple o-rings to aid in positioning and may serve to protect the inner LED components from water damage. Maybe. We did not test the survival rate in a water submersion test. Instead, we wanted to see how bright it really was. Plus, we wanted to see how "extremely durable" it really was as it says in the product description.
Mic test - one - two
Most lights are dropped from eye level and must withstand a 6-foot drop to pass basic QC. This is for all the clumsy ones out there who tend to drop everything. Mostly from the 3-foot level out of pockets or backpacks. The logic behind the 6-foot test is that it could withstand twice the impact as most people would subject it to - even on accident. In order to make this happen, we performed a simple perpendicular drop test on a masonry block at shoulder height. It pretty much did nothing. For maybe 90-percent of the population who would use this light, that's about as much abuse as they'll put it through.
But not us.
We're hard on equipment and often perform work at heights and we have high expectations of everything we get our hands on. So. Up we went. 12-foot drop. For those times when you have a mishap while on a ladder or tree stand or second-story window. Still not even a scratch. Boo.
The light comes with a small lanyard that is a nice touch. It allows you to sling it on your wrist, clip it to a bag, or easily retrieve it from a side pocket. But it also helps when stringing it up to be dropped from over 20 feet. Which we did. We wanted to see something break - like maybe one of the pointed bezel tips on the face. But after several successful drops on the masonry block, the only thing that broke were chunks off of the block.
The light remained intact and functional.
Shot in the dark - With an ATV beam
To test the light out by comparison, we rigged it up to the ATV to see how it held up to the high- and low-beams. The light was surprisingly bright and focus was restricted because of how it was mounted to the ATV. But where it really added value was right up close. The flashlight significantly improved visibility directly in front of the machine, where you might expect to see (or not see) obstructions. When combined, the two lights complement each other. In order to get the same function and distance, you'd need two or more flashlights to telescope out and provide light up close.
Another test we did was the S.O.S pattern, which we put facing upward at the base of a tall tree. It illuminated the entire tree. It sent out a beacon that could undoubtedly be seen from an airplane in the event of a rescue.
Shot through the heart - high impact test
Well, we'd seen enough. And perhaps more than enough. We yanked it, tossed it, dropped it, and we even ripped off the contact spring from the soldered joint. Still, this thing survived. So, for the final test, we thought we'd put it through a significant side impact and see what would happen.
The result? Barely a scratch. The frame absorbed a nearly point-blank .22-caliber pellet like it was nothing. The only scar left behind was a bit of coating that blew off.
All-in-all, we're pretty impressed. For less than $20, this little light really stood out. As an EDC option, it is compact, powerful, versatile, useful, and handy to say the least. Plus it managed to withstand our torture tests and keep on lighting the way.
Use promo code "tacticaltorture" for 10% off your purchase
Additional Information and sources
For additional products and information, visit Ultimate Survival Essentials at ultimatesurvivalessentials.com. We hope this information is useful to you in deciding how to better implement your own tactical illumination needs. Please share, comment, and support us by following and reaching out.
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