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The best EDC flashlight out there.

Discussion in 'Survival/Preparedness Forum' started by WolfNotSheep, May 18, 2012.

  1. WolfNotSheep

    WolfNotSheep Tackleberry

    895
    1
    Mar 1, 2008
    Central Virginia
    If you EDC a gun then two things should go with you; a spare magazine and a flashlight. For me, these three items are indispensible. In an effort to keep the items I carry on my person to a minimum of both size and weight, I CCW a sub-compact Glock 26. And, up until approximately four months ago, I was carrying a flashlight that was large, bulky, and that just felt out of place banging around inside my pockets.

    While perusing CountyComm.com one day, salivating and debating how much money I could justifiably spend, I came across a little flashlight made by a company named Maratac. When I say little, I really mean little. As in less than three inches long, a half-inch in diameter, and weighing less than an ounce. Maratac makes a few different flavors of flashlight, but the differences basically boil down to either their AA models or their AAA models. As I only own their basic AAA model, I will imit this thread to that specific light. If you wish to know more about the AA models just visit their website, but I'm warning you; they have some pretty mantastic gadgets over there. Give yourself a good hour to browse their site, and having some privacy wouldn't hurt either. The ability to type one-handed oft times comes into play while looking through their wares.

    The light I have is the Maratac AAA Flashlight Rev 2, in the natural hard anodized finish. I'd liken the actual color of the finish to a high quality galvanization. It's a nice, subdued, dull gray that blends in well without being a nightmare to find if dropped in some brush or grass.

    The light takes a single AAA battery and has two output modes; 115 lumens for up to 65 minutes, or 1.5 lumens for up to 50 hours. Twisting the lens housing once (i.e. the front of the light where the blinding shinyness comes from) causes the light to come on at the high setting while twisting again or just twisting twice in quick succession turns on the low mode. Pretty nifty.

    Included with the flashlight are a small pastic case, a diffuser, spare o-rings, a pocket clip, and a single AAA battery. The price is $24.95 as of today (05/18/12). I'll include a link at the bottom of the page for those of you out there similarly inflicted with my interwebs laziness or who's google-fu is weak and girly.

    As previously mentioned, I've had this light since around February-ish. I EDC it religiously and use it constantly for important tasks such as shining it in my buddies faces while asking if it's still bright and also lighting my way through my house late at night so I don't trip over the dog and impale myself on a cat. And, after four months of carry and use, it shows no signs of wear and I'm still on the same battery.

    I can't say enough about this little light and how awesome it is. Having a flashlight always handy, one small enough to be practical yet still bright enough to be tactical, is just a damned good idea. Whether you CCW or not you should check them out and give the idea of adding a flashlight to your EDC some serious thought.

    Thanks for reading, and best of luck.

    http://countycomm.com/aaa.html
     
  2. quake

    quake Millennium Member

    4,141
    67
    Aug 4, 1999
    Arkansas, USA
    Looks good. I'm a big fan of that breed of small flashlight. I keyring-carry a fenix e-15 that's pretty similar. One cr-123 and 0.76" x 2.34" (slightly shorter & fatter). Ten hours @ 30 lumens, 75 lumens for 4 hours, and 140 for two hours; give or take.

    It's not only the most-used flashlight I own, it's the most-used tool I own. Literally multiple times every day; I've used it four or five times today already on a jobsite, and use it most evenings at least once or twice in the yard or shop.
     

  3. WolfNotSheep

    WolfNotSheep Tackleberry

    895
    1
    Mar 1, 2008
    Central Virginia
    I hear ya Quake. It seems like my old CRKT folder and this new flashlight of mine see more work than all my other tools combined.

    I've looked into one of those Fenix lights but wante dto stay standardized with AAA batteries since all the headlamps and flashlights in my various bags take them. I also figured on being able to find AAA batteries pretty much anywhere. Even dollar tree carries them, albeit they are the crappy, generic ones. It's also a lot cheaper to store AAAs.

    This is all in my humble opinion, of course.
     
  4. racerford

    racerford

    4,825
    400
    Apr 22, 2003
    DFW area
    I appreciate the convenience of a AAA light (and the concern for battery commonality). That's what I carry mostly. However, for anything longer term, a AA light is nearly as small. AA batteries cost the same as AAA and have 2.5 to 3 times the energy capacity and run time. So if you use your light just a little everday and have others nearby that have longer runtime or brighter then a AAA is fine.

    It is kind of like a pocket pistol. Any pistol you have on you is better than the one you don't. And a pistol is what you use to fight your wat to your rifle.
     
  5. Bolster

    Bolster Not Ready Yet!

    1,149
    1
    Jul 23, 2011
    State of Stupidity
    Don't own a Maratac, but like it. Especially like the copper version.

    http://countycomm.com/aaacopper.html

    Sounds like it has an excellent, uncomplicated UI with exactly what most of us need: a high, and a low.

    For my AAA I carry a Quark Preon because it's High CRI.

    If I could carry only 1 light it would be a Zebralight headlamp, just for the sheer utility of it. But awkward to carry, and for minimalist pocket use, hard to beat AAA.
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2012
  6. Warp

    Warp ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ

    16,337
    323
    Jul 31, 2005
    Atlanta
    For me the best EDC flashlight can be seen in the below picture. I have had something of that exact type for many years. That being a 2xCR123 with a current gen LED in a small form factor with a same size head/body in the ballpark of 0.85" diameter

    The Fenix P1D on my keychain, as a backup, (been there for YEARS) would satisfy the EDC role for many people.

    I know the 1xAAA lights are SO small and easy to carry, but their output is sub-anemic compared to what a 123 powered light can put out. 80 lumens? As my main light? No thanks.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2012
  7. Syclone538

    Syclone538

    2,086
    1
    Jan 8, 2006
  8. bdcochran

    bdcochran

    3,615
    467
    Sep 23, 2005
    Los Angeles
    If you listen to Bolster's advice, you probably won't go wrong. He has a lot of experience with flashlights.

    I own probably 30 flashlights.

    One size does not fit all. There is no one flashlight that serves everyone's purposes.

    I recommend the following (my girlfriend took one away from me when I received the first one:
    C3-907 8 Mode 170 Lumen AA Flashlight

    This is the brightest single AA battery light I have ever seen! CREE R2-WC White LED

    High power mode with maximum output of 170 lumen
    Normal output of 60 lumen
    Energy saving mode with output of 30 lumen
    Strobe
    Slower Strobe
    SOS (international code to call for help)
    Signal mode 1: 3 flashes in one second
    Signal mode 2: 1 flash in every three seconds
    Pointed head, suitable as self defense device
    One high power CREE LED
    Switch modes simply by pressing the switch twice in succession within 2 seconds
    Glow in the dark switch
    Constant on/off with switch on the flashlight's end
    Made with high quality aircraft grade aluminium
    Made with extremely durable polycarbonate lens
    3 mile visibility
    LEDs can last for 50 000+ hours
    2.5 hours burn time
    Water resistant
    Uses 1 AA battery
    Length: 9.8cm (3.85")
    Width: 2.26cm (0.9")
    Weight: 45g (excluding batteries)

    Individually tested by Greg McGee Engineering prior to shipping.

    Greg McGee Engineering sells them.:wavey:
     
  9. i will have to agree with bdcohcran. i have 3 of the c3-907 lights that i carry daily. one in my pocket, one in my truck and one in my bag. i absolutey love these lights and use at least oneof them daily.
     
  10. LongGun1

    LongGun1 StraightShooter


    Another +1 :thumbsup:

    My primary EDC is a Greg McGee Engineering MTE M2 (optical zoom rechargeable 18650 powered 5-mode with Q5 emitter) in a horizontal mounted (belt loop attached) holster..

    ..and my secondary EDC is a MTE C3-907 (8-mode Eneloop powered)..that "lives" in my left rear pants pocket




    I have over 100 LED Flashlights in various configurations..

    ..but both MTE can throw to a degree that puts each squarely in a class by themselves.


    Both lights rock..

    .. & the 18650 powered MTE M2 is used many times a day in an industrial setting!!
    :supergrin:

    Even though we are provided "free" flashlights & batteries at work..

    ..these little lights so outclass the "free" 2 D-cell flashlights..

    ..hundreds of the MTE have been bought at work..

    ..either directly by co-workers..

    ..or for their family, friends, hunting buddies, etc...


    Look at the screenshot of the C3-907 compared to other high performance LED flashlights in Vic303's C3-907 review..

    http://www.glocktalk.com/forums/showthread.php?p=16941828


    Interesting thread on how so many became sold on MTE...

    http://pullig.dyndns.org/practicalpreps/forums3/viewtopic.php?f=35&t=2720&hilit=
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2012
  11. tim12232

    tim12232 Pistolero

    662
    0
    Aug 15, 2011
    midwest
    Fenix lights are great! I own multiple!
     
  12. LG1 talked me into the c3-907 initially and now its my go to multiple times over.
     
  13. Cole125

    Cole125 Silver Member

    7,584
    2
    Apr 5, 2008
    Far West, USA
    Surefire Backup is one of the best small EDC flashlights. Well worth the money, mine has been reliable.

    [​IMG]
     
  14. Bolster

    Bolster Not Ready Yet!

    1,149
    1
    Jul 23, 2011
    State of Stupidity
    Best, based on what qualities? Give us evidence not assertion. I'm open to your argument but I want to know what makes it "best," other than that you own it.
     
  15. LongGun1

    LongGun1 StraightShooter

    So do I...up to & including a TK40...all rarely used! :supergrin:

    For example...while out camping (with several current/former military relatives) during Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day last December)..

    ..the much smaller & "less powerful" 18650 powered MTE M2 that I EDC..

    ..out threw his (Large Truck Flashlight) Fenix TK40 on TURBO! :shocked:

    Even I was amazed....as the TK40 is 630 lumens!


    Needless to say....though he already owns a C3-907..

    (as does most of my family now)

    .. he became yet another (18650 powered) M2 EDC'er! :whistling:
     
  16. bdcochran

    bdcochran

    3,615
    467
    Sep 23, 2005
    Los Angeles
    After buying 4 of Greg's $25 units, I just bit the bullet and bough tthe M2 with a new type of battery that I just don't have.
     
  17. LongGun1

    LongGun1 StraightShooter


    He sells the 18650 powered M2 with a Tenergy Charger, a holster & Tenergy protected 18650 batteries..... if requested!


    It only uses one...the other(s) is a ready spare!


    Let me know if you like it as much as I do! :supergrin:
     
  18. Bolster

    Bolster Not Ready Yet!

    1,149
    1
    Jul 23, 2011
    State of Stupidity
    Required reading for anybody upgrading to 18650s is the thread and pictures of the German guy who blew off his fingers with a runaway 18650, over at CPF forums.

    Not so that people are afraid of 18650s, but so people treat them with the proper respect. They ain't your daddy's D cells. And don't leave home while they're charging.
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2012
  19. glockguerilla

    glockguerilla

    962
    0
    Jun 7, 2009
    Over a year EDC Streamlight ProTac 1L and has taken abuse & works great. I (by accident) dropped it in boiling water months ago and pulled it out and worked fine.
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2012
  20. LongGun1

    LongGun1 StraightShooter


    Those are valid concerns..

    (as the 18560 Li-Ion is a very powerful battery for the size)

    ..and good reasons to strongly consider running "protected 18650"..

    http://www.lygte-info.dk/info/battery protection UK.html

    ..one which limits current with your particular device in mind..

    ..combined a good quality charger (i.e. Tenergy)

    ..like I mentioned in a previous post!


    One nice thing about the 18650 powered M2 is it runs really cool for the available throw....even on High Power Mode (220 lumens)..

    ..and high internal temperature & current generated by very high output LED flashlights is a (or the) major contributing factor for thermal runaway, explosion, etc in unprotected 18650...IMO


    Li-Ion is commonly used in cell phones also..

    ..and if used improperly..(i.e. using wrong charger, crappy batteries, etc)

    ..injures up to & including death have been reported! :shocked:

    But I do not see everyone rushing to give up their smart phones over that concern!
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2012