Saturday, July 12, 2008

Tactical Flashlights

A reliable flashlight is an important addition to anyone's collection of tactical gear. This article will describe what to look for when shopping for a tactical flashlight.

Light Output
A tactical flashlight has one basic job -- provide light. That suggests that one of the most important specs to look for is light output. Light output in tactical flashlights is measured in lumens. How do those relate to candela (aka candle power)? As commonly referred to, lumens are actually lumenous flux, or total light emitted, and candela are luminous intensity, or light emitted in a specific direction. The bottom line - more is better.

You should look for a tactical flashlight that emits 90 or more lumens. 100 is great, 120 is top notch. The tactical light should be able to emit full power for 60 minutes, and low to medium power for two to three times that.

Ideally, your tactical flashlight will have LEDs instead of a conventional incandescent bulb. LED bulbs last hundreds of times longer than incandescent bulbs, and are much less prone to shock and water damage. Look for a tactical flashlight with different colored LEDs to help maintain light discipline -- hunters will appreciate multi-colored LEDs since animals generally have difficulty detecting anything but white light.

Finally, look at the construction of the tactical flashlight. Is it metal? Are there rubber o-rings at all seams to keep water and dirt out? What type of batteries does it run on? All these specs should play into your decision when purchasing any piece of tactical gear.

I hope this article has given you some useful things to think about when purchasing a tactical flashlight.

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