Involvement:Expert (understands the inner workings) - Ownership:1 day to 1 week
The light has some sturdy construction and heft with a battery tube wall over 3mm thick on average. (approximately 2.5mm at clip attachment point, 3.5mm thick at knurling, 3mm elsewhere) The checkered knurling is reasonably aggressive and provides good grip. The spring steel pocket clip is removable (takes a little effort; it's strong). It can be used on other lights of similar diameter (20mm at the clip attachment point). The matte finish has a nice feel and seems to be some form of anodize, though I don't know how thick. It has what appear to be trapezoidal threads, which is a strong wear-resistant threading similar to square-cut. The threading is the same for both the head and tail, allowing you to reverse them so you can point the clip either way for head up/down carry or clipping to the brim of a hat as an improvised head lamp. The light can tail stand, and has twin lanyard holes so you can loop a lanyard or split ring through horizontally without affecting the ability to tail stand. The output compares favorably with a 90-lumen source. There are o-rings at the lens, head and tail. They also came lubricated. A dunk test in a bucket of water revealed no sign of water ingress, so I'd say it's at least splash proof.
Ringy beam; The reflector has a light orange peel texture and the emitter collar protrudes a small distance into it instead of sitting flush with the base. This causes the cree rings in the beam to be a bit more pronounced than they would with a flush emitter fitting or heavier reflector texturing.
The switch is a reverse clicky with short travel and a good tactile click, and the tailcap has a date printed in a small arc beside the switch boot (2010.03 in my case). Whatever the grade of this finish, it's tougher than the norm. A finish typical of cheap flashlights takes scratches and dings instantly if you so much as look at it the wrong way, yet this shows no sign of damage after a scraping slip with some steel calipers and taking the clip on and off several times. Current draw at the tail read 960mA with a freshly charged Eneloop NiMH battery. If I could improve anything on this light, it would be to replace the reflector with a TIR optic.
Superb construction compared to the competition in this price bracket.
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