My introduction to Cloud Defense was purchasing their WML Tape Switch Shoe. The purpose of their introductory offering was to provide a solid mount to 1913 rails to protect tape switch controls for lights on long guns. It offers a brilliant piece of machining, and allowed wires to be routed securely to the rail, underneath the unit, in wire channels, with little chance of damage or hanging up, without the need for zip ties or bands, ( I still use a couple of zip ties, Just to be sure).

I mounted the Shoe on my DDM4V7 16" gun and attached a Streamlight HXL on an Arisaka MLOC mount at 9:00. I could not be more pleased with the results, the light is held very close to the rail with minimal offset. The Shoe really ups the durability of the tape switch controls and the wire routing, (while needing three hands and several tries to assemble), once done is very low profile and secure. Long gun low light classes are rare for me, I may get in one a year; through around six carbine classes the light, shoe, and mounts have been rock solid, even bracing off of barricades.

When Cloud announced they were working on their own weapon light, I took notice, after being so pleased with their other product. I believe it was announced three years before it was released, when I saw the cost it was a hard pass; It's been available for nearly a year now.

So with communism creeping into Virginia I figured best to add another gun, pre-Boogaloo. So I started listing out how I wanted to set up a 14.5" gun. After looking at Surefire lights, and the wiring kit, Ariska Mount, Cloud Shoe, the cost was higher than the OWL unit.

The OWL utilizes integral controls and mount, It's a solid machined piece of aluminum, the bezel and end cap are not threaded like traditional lights they secure with lugs, much like closing the bolt on a rifle. The kit came with two rechargeable batteries and a very high end charger to keep them running. Supposedly, the future of WML's is going rechargeable, instructions caution about using CR123's in the OWL. It does require mounting the front buis behind the light due to it's position on the rail.

I took the gun to our local indoor 100yd rifle range after Christmas, to sight in and run some stationary drills, the light is intuitive and easy to use ambidextrously. Quality is solid, and it drew quite a bit of attention from other shooters, who had not seen one in person.

CD intentionally made the design forward compatible with new bezels as they are released, so once you own the base unit, it will work with upgrades coming in the future.

I'll need to put some time in on it, but I am very happy with the OWL so far.