Which would be the better weapon light?

Which would be the better weapon light?

This is a discussion on Which would be the better weapon light? within the Related Gear & Equipment forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Which is the better weapon mounted light? 1.Insight Technology SSL-1 2.Streamlight M-3X Tactical Illuminator 3.Streamlight TLR–1 Whichever one I get will be mounted on my ...

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  1. #1
    Member Array Alien Nation's Avatar
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    Which would be the better weapon light?

    Which is the better weapon mounted light?
    1.Insight Technology SSL-1
    2.Streamlight M-3X Tactical Illuminator
    3.Streamlight TLR–1

    Whichever one I get will be mounted on my XD .45. I would like it to be effective at 25-30 meters. Thanks.

    If anyone has any experience with any of the three I would love to hear your thought on the matter. Especially the SSL-1.
    “You come at me with a sword and with a spear. But I come at you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the LORD will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you". 1 Samuel 17, 45-46
    Brian


  2. #2
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    I have the M3, Surefire X200A, and the TLR-2 (same as the TLR-1 but with the laser), annnnnnd, I like the beam characteristics of the TRL-1/2 better than any of them. Nice center beam and nice outer light. If I could get that same beam pattern in a handheld, I'd buy it instantly.

    I'm not fond of the 'screw-on' mount, even though you can use a coin to attach/detach it.

    I much prefer the push on switch for momentary illumination of the X200.
    I'm too young to be this old!
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  3. #3
    Member Array Alien Nation's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tangle View Post
    I have the M3, Surefire X200A, and the TLR-2 (same as the TLR-1 but with the laser), annnnnnd, I like the beam characteristics of the TRL-1/2 better than any of them. Nice center beam and nice outer light. If I could get that same beam pattern in a handheld, I'd buy it instantly.

    I'm not fond of the 'screw-on' mount, even though you can use a coin to attach/detach it.

    I much prefer the push on switch for momentary illumination of the X200.
    How many feet would you say the TLR-1/2's beam is effective to? Insight claims that the SSL-1 has a bright 6' spot at 25 meters. I really like the look and warranty of the TLR's so I was hoping they would be as bright at the same distance.
    “You come at me with a sword and with a spear. But I come at you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the LORD will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you". 1 Samuel 17, 45-46
    Brian

  4. #4
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    I'll have to give it a try tonight and get back to you, but I'll say this: my projects class tested about 20 tactical type lights so I've seen a bunch of them and yet the TLR-1/2 made a lasting impression on me.

    Twenty five meters is an quite a distance to engage a threat with a handgun. I don't know that you implied that but thought this would be worth a mention. When I first tried a Surefire L2 (digital LED, dual power level) I was not impressed. Other lights, TL2/3 (handheld) and some other Surefire lights (A2, Z2) had those really bright center focused beams.

    As I used them more and more, I began to see the advantage of a bright, large beam. In a room and short ranges outside, that broad beam discloses much more threat area than that a more sharply focused narrower beam. I was so impressed that I bought a Surefire L2 for myself and carry it 24/7. Plus the ability to use a much lower beam power comes in really handy.

    I also have a Gladius and it has a nice beam, reaches out well, and has some really nice features but it's a handheld. But, my TLR-2's beam is just as good and reaches just as far and I believe it's a bit clearer as well.
    I'm too young to be this old!
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  5. #5
    Ex Member Array Pete's Avatar
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    I use an Insight X2 (laser & light) for HD, works perfectly at all distances in my house.
    Due to holster restrictions and distance factors outlined by Tangle I do not take it out with me, I use a handheld flashlight and generally try to keep out of the shadows.

  6. #6
    Member Array C4iGrant's Avatar
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    Of the three, I would take the SSL-1. You however left out the SF X200. These are the best on the market IMHO.



    C4
    G&R Tactical, LLC
    www.GRTactical.com

  7. #7
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    I appriciate the input fellas. The reason I did not include the SF X200 was the $250 price tag. I can get the TLR-1 for a pinch over $100 and the SSL-1 for a pinch under $150. I don't anticipate engaging a threat out to 25 meters but if the light is real bright at 25m then imagine what it's like at 7 yards!

    Also for hand held recharchable lights I seriously recomend checking out this link:
    https://www.pts-flashlights.com/category.aspx?uid=1
    (Check out the light grey high lighted column) The Raider and Rattlesnake lights are great. Very powerful! High quality.
    Last edited by Alien Nation; June 17th, 2007 at 06:13 PM.
    “You come at me with a sword and with a spear. But I come at you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the LORD will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you". 1 Samuel 17, 45-46
    Brian

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alien Nation View Post
    I appriciate the input fellas. The reason I did not include the SF X200 was the $250 price tag. I can get the TLR-1 for a pinch over $100 and the SSL-1 for a pinch under $150. I don't anticipate engaging a threat uot to 25 meters but if the light is real bright at 25m then imagine what it's like at 7 yards!

    Also for hand held recharchable lights I seriously recomend checking out this link:
    https://www.pts-flashlights.com/category.aspx?uid=1
    (Check out the light grey high lighted column)
    Careful about getting caught up in a brightness thing. The light is an illumination tool, not the weapon. Of course it doesn't hurt that a light blinds the BG, most any light of 65 lumens will do that. Once you pass that threshold, I'm not sure there's much to be gained by an even brighter light, in fact, a brighter light, or more focused, may be a disadvantage. If it's really dark and you bounce a bright light off of a light colored or reflective object, you can mess up your night vision.
    I'm too young to be this old!
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  9. #9
    Member Array C4iGrant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alien Nation View Post
    I appriciate the input fellas. The reason I did not include the SF X200 was the $250 price tag. I can get the TLR-1 for a pinch over $100 and the SSL-1 for a pinch under $150. I don't anticipate engaging a threat out to 25 meters but if the light is real bright at 25m then imagine what it's like at 7 yards!

    Also for hand held recharchable lights I seriously recomend checking out this link:
    https://www.pts-flashlights.com/category.aspx?uid=1
    (Check out the light grey high lighted column) The Raider and Rattlesnake lights are great. Very powerful! High quality.
    The price on the SF is retail. Cotact me for a much better price. I also sell the TLR-1 and SSL-1 and offer discounts on them as well.


    C4
    G&R Tactical, LLC
    www.GRTactical.com

  10. #10
    Member Array Alien Nation's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tangle View Post
    Careful about getting caught up in a brightness thing. The light is an illumination tool, not the weapon. Of course it doesn't hurt that a light blinds the BG, most any light of 65 lumens will do that. Once you pass that threshold, I'm not sure there's much to be gained by an even brighter light, in fact, a brighter light, or more focused, may be a disadvantage. If it's really dark and you bounce a bright light off of a light colored or reflective object, you can mess up your night vision.
    That's true! I didn't think about it like that! The TLR-1 so far is taking top honors. I have heard from several people that the TLR-1 is very, very tough. I'm waiting on an email fron Insight though about the SSL-1 to see if it has good light spillage(Flood) along with it's bright spot ability. It is mil-spec so it should be tough too. I may see if I can get them both so I have a good outdoor light(camping) and a great indoor light for HD.
    “You come at me with a sword and with a spear. But I come at you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the LORD will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you". 1 Samuel 17, 45-46
    Brian

  11. #11
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    I have a TLR-2 and I really like it's brightness.

    Having played with it a little though, I have decided that I would rather have a light separate from the weapon. I don't like the idea that I am aiming my weapon at an unknown and possibly unintended target. Also, I can hold my Surefire in such a way as to not give away my COM!
    ALWAYS carry! - NEVER tell!

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  12. #12
    Member Array C4iGrant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thumper View Post
    I have a TLR-2 and I really like it's brightness.

    Having played with it a little though, I have decided that I would rather have a light separate from the weapon. I don't like the idea that I am aiming my weapon at an unknown and possibly unintended target. Also, I can hold my Surefire in such a way as to not give away my COM!
    You should actually have two (one is none and two is one). You are correct that you don't want to have to point your weapon at everything you want to look at.

    Having taken a lot of low light/night shooting classes, I can tell you that a weapon mounted light makes life MUCH easier for doing a lot of tasks and you will also shoot tighter groups IMHO.


    C4
    G&R Tactical, LLC
    www.GRTactical.com

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by C4iGrant View Post
    The price on the SF is retail. Cotact me for a much better price. I also sell the TLR-1 and SSL-1 and offer discounts on them as well.


    C4
    I sure will as soon as I get some $ up.
    “You come at me with a sword and with a spear. But I come at you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the LORD will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you". 1 Samuel 17, 45-46
    Brian

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by C4iGrant View Post
    ...Having taken a lot of low light/night shooting classes, I can tell you that a weapon mounted light makes life MUCH easier for doing a lot of tasks and you will also shoot tighter groups IMHO.
    C4
    I second that. I too have taken a lot of low light classes and agree completely.

    As for, "...you don't want to have to point your weapon at everything you want to look at...." it depends. As I recall we are talking about a home defense application. Hence, once the family, in my case, me, my wife, and my dog Tangle, are accounted for, everything else in the house is a threat area and may contain a threat. I do want my gun pointing at everything I look at. In fact, not only is my gun and WML pointing at the threat area, so is the laser sight. Even with a handheld we forget that we use techniques, e.g. the Harries and Rogers, to point the light and weapon together, so what's the difference if you do it with a handheld or a WML? Either way the light gets indexed with the gun.

    Then, if you have to guide a child to a safe room, etc. you have to have the gun in one hand for protection, a handheld in the other hand, and you have to hold the child with the other hand - that's three hands. A WML solves that problem nicely.

    The only alternative is to carry the gun in one hand and the light in the other. Here are the problems with that. We've already seen one problem, you've got both hands tied up. Another problem is that your gun would likely be pointing downward and your light would be searching for threats. If you see a threat, you have to now bring your gun up, index, control the light and gun and essentially fire the gun with one hand. That's too slow and one-hand shooting is not as accurate and fast as two hands. Another issue that has been discovered is that when a threat is found, there is a huge tendency to start shooting early. I.e. your gun is down, you identify an imminent threat, and you began shooting as you raise and/or rotate the gun. That's not good.

    Just some things to consider. Oh, yeah, if your home defense gun is a carbine or shotgun, the WML issue seems to fade away since WML is about the only option you have.
    I'm too young to be this old!
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  15. #15
    Member Array Alien Nation's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tangle View Post
    That's too slow and one-hand shooting is not as accurate and fast as two hands.
    I agree with your post except for this part, sort of. It is more accurate to use two hands. The accuracy requred for CQB is attainable with one hand and just as fast if not faster if, I said if a person practices and trains for it. I mean no offense to any one but carrying or using a handgun without training to use one hand is cheating your self out of an extremely valuable tool. It is likely you may only be able to use one hand for allot of various reasons. How likely? Impossible to tell thats why we train.

    As far as which is better, handheld and weapon mount or just weapon mount? To me that depends on the level of training and mindset.

    Personally I am not willing to take the chance it'a family member in front of my gun. I use a small 10 lumen light for searching and a 45 lumen light on my shotgun or pistol.(for now, soon to be 380L for long guns and 80L for pistol!).

    I can always throw the small light at an opponent as a distractionary measure or just drop it. It's not bright enough to be used to blind someone so it can't be used against me. As far as dropping it and illuminating myself? First off the BG would have to contend with the 45 lumen light in his face and if I've dropped the hand held it's because I'm already engaged with the BG.
    “You come at me with a sword and with a spear. But I come at you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the LORD will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you". 1 Samuel 17, 45-46
    Brian

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