how many lumens for a tactical flashlight?

This is a discussion on how many lumens for a tactical flashlight? within the Related Gear & Equipment forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I go against the grain here. I say that they can be to bright, especially if its intended use is in doors. Remember that the ...

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Thread: how many lumens for a tactical flashlight?

  1. #16
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    I go against the grain here. I say that they can be to bright, especially if its intended use is in doors. Remember that the light out put can and will affect your vision too. I'd rather have a 80 or even 65 lum light that has a properly focused beam than a 120 nuke pocket torch when indoors or close quarters.
    "Just blame Sixto"

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  3. #17
    VIP Member Array Blackeagle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SIXTO View Post
    I go against the grain here. I say that they can be to bright, especially if its intended use is in doors. Remember that the light out put can and will affect your vision too. I'd rather have a 80 or even 65 lum light that has a properly focused beam than a 120 nuke pocket torch when indoors or close quarters.
    Agreed. Keep in mind that flashlights are bullet magnets. The best way to employ them in most cases is going to be to briefly illuminate the target to ID it, then turn the light off, move, and shoot the threat using ambient light. If your light is powerful enough that the reflection off a white-painted wall messes up your night vision, those extra lumens may end up hurting more than they help.

  4. #18
    Distinguished Member Array orangevol's Avatar
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    I too am looking for a good tactical type flashlight and am a little confused about LED vs incandescent? Is one better than the other? What are the pros and cons of each?

    Thanks
    Proud NRA member

  5. #19
    Senior Member Array Jackle1886's Avatar
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    LED's use FAR less power than incandescents. They will last longer, somewhere over 10,000 hours of use per led, compared to whatever a regular bulb is. I'd go with LED all the way, they last longer, use less power, and are less prone to breaking.
    Better to die on your feet, than to live on your knees.

  6. #20
    VIP Member Array zacii's Avatar
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    I've got a Surefire G2 and I like it alot. I think that it's just 60 lumens, but it's bright to me. When I check on my kids at night I point it to the floor and it seems to light up the entire room. I also use it to investigate chickenknappers at night ;)
    Trust in God and keep your powder dry

    "A heavily armed citizenry is not about overthrowing the government; it is about preventing the government from overthrowing liberty. A people stripped of their right of self defense is defenseless against their own government." -source

  7. #21
    VIP Member Array jwhite75's Avatar
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    The LED seem to be a little better on batteries. I personally have found the Surefire E1L to be the perfect balance. I agree with Sixto it can be too bright especially indoors as it will reflect off of white walls back to the user to a degree. It is a 45 lumen. Sure it may be better to have a little higher lumen light...but I can light up my back yard pretty well with it. 60-65 isnt bad. my 45 works fine for me for everyday use. There are lots of companies out there selling these now, but Surefire just consistently does it best. IMHO.
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  8. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by cmb View Post
    Interested in a flashlight... how many lumens and such? Recommendations?
    I'm happy with my Streamlight PolyTac LED. Nothing fancy - 120 Lumens for under 40.

  9. #23
    Member Array Gunsmoke16's Avatar
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    How much do you want to spend? I have a Rayovac $20 Walmart penlight that's LED 80 Lumens I replaced my Mini-Maglight with. It's extremely bright at night but not so much during daytime...runs forever on two AA batteries & I never leave without it. On duty I have a Surefire 8AX Commander that's 110 Lumens. It is as bright as one of the brightest car headlights and will light up a whole field. Cost about $200 for the light, 2 batteries & dual charger system.

    If you need to depend on it, buy a Surefire. Streamlights are good also, but better buy an extra bulb or so. The Surefires are rated and clinically, technologically proven as the brightest lights in the world. If you don't want to spend a fortune, get a Surefire G2 Nitrolon light for $39. It's 60 Lumens, but you can get a replacement upgrade bulb for about $20 that brings it to about 120 lumens. They are really light-weight. The Original 6P in metal is also 60/120 lumen capable. Those little batteries are expensive though, unless you buy them in bulk, so might want to look at a rechargeable like the G3 Nitrolon, although it is bigger at about 7" to 1ft long. (Is it for everyday carry? Need a pocket clip?) Run time on rechargeables is about 1 hr. unless you get an LED head for it.
    The quality of the light is another factor. 80 lumens from a Rayovac and a Surefire is like night & day. Surefire uses computer laser control to produce the best light projectors and longest burn time for the device available. They even have specialty lights that are 500+lumes that can signal a satellite in space, and most of our military rely on Surefire. They have defensive lights with sharp edges you can poke with and a neat one called the Aviator that has adjustable settings and a red map light built in. I personally wouldn't pay over $100 for any light that you could lose or break, unless you put it in your pocket every day and use it every day. I called Surefire once to ask how much a bulb was for my 8AX and the guy was shocked...said hold on...$28...HUH..., well, did you blow one...nope, just wanted a spare. Well, the Seals and combat forces are really rough on these things, but I've never sold a replacement bulb...yet. I've had it about 4yrs now and use it all the time. Replaced two rechargeable batteries, but still the same bulb. Had a friend that has a Streamlight Stinger & he has gone through about 6+bulbs at $7 ea. (you have to replace them with gloves or the oil in your fingerprints will reduce the life of ANY bulb) I would choose an LED, just to never have to worry about it croaking when you need it most. Call Surefire (on web) and they will send you a big color catalog with all their stuff. I'm confident that you can beat the thing till the paint is gone from it and it will still work. I wouldn't try that with any other light & depend on it. (and if you do, Sharpie pens touch up the nicks nicely...btdt).

  10. #24
    Member Array LM2024's Avatar
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    Love my Fenix LD20 and it uses 2 AA batteries which is a HUGE plus, especially on night shift where the only place I can get batteries if I need them is a gas station. I normally use rechargeables.

    It can throw out 180 lumens in turbo mode/strobe light mode. Turning the bezel gives you three out put options: 9 lumens (71hrs) -> 47 lumens (13hrs) -> 94 lumens (5hrs)

    Even has an SOS mode if you're lost somewhere and want to flash SOS in morse code.

    It beats the hell out of my old Surefires.

  11. #25
    Senior Member Array mercop's Avatar
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    The vast majority of cops I know are used Surefire 6Ps and G2s with 60 lumens. There is little you cannot accomplish with it. When you are using a light for work and doing car stops and searching building you need a light to last, not reheat pizza.

  12. #26
    Member Array dwyermw's Avatar
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    The Fenix LD 20. Runs on two AA batteries, 180 lumens, a blinding strobe light, 6 different illumination settings; amazon.com for $57. Simply awesome.

  13. #27
    VIP Member Array zacii's Avatar
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    Here is a chart comparing the lumen output on flashlights.
    Trust in God and keep your powder dry

    "A heavily armed citizenry is not about overthrowing the government; it is about preventing the government from overthrowing liberty. A people stripped of their right of self defense is defenseless against their own government." -source

  14. #28
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    I use a Surefire G2 LED everyday working on cars. Actually, I have 3 of them, as they grow legs from time to time. Great light at a reasonable price. I probably use my light more than most people. They've been dropped, kicked, used, and generally abused to the point that the aluminum bezels have lost most of their paint and aren't round anymore. Still work great. I get about 10 days to 2 weeks out of a pair of CR123 batteries.

  15. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackeagle View Post
    Agreed. Keep in mind that flashlights are bullet magnets. The best way to employ them in most cases is going to be to briefly illuminate the target to ID it, then turn the light off, move, and shoot the threat using ambient light. If your light is powerful enough that the reflection off a white-painted wall messes up your night vision, those extra lumens may end up hurting more than they help.
    This reminds me of one of the Laws of Combat, Murphy style.

    "Tracers work both ways"!
    "Without fear there can be no Courage!"

  16. #30
    Distinguished Member Array pirate's Avatar
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    I used Surfire for years but now I like Fenix, more power/lumins for the money and quality is top notch also.
    When I leave the home port:
    S&W 642 Airweight, Ruger SP 101, Colt Detective Spec., CZ RAMI, Kahr PM9, Kahr CW40, S&W Model 10-7, Glock 30, 19, and 26, Browning Hi Power, CZ82, Colt Commander, Dan Wesson PM7, Ruger LCP

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