Flashlight systems and tactics


What kind of lights does everyone prefer and why? Are you a fan of weapon mounted lights? What tactics do you use when practicing with a flashlight?
I myself keep a form of light on all of my firearms. I prefer any light that is pressure controlled so that if I’m running a rifle/shotgun I can quickly cycle the light on and off (I don’t want the only constant light source to be 6" in front of my face) if I’m running a pistol i want the same with a weapon mounted light, but prefer a separate light held as far to my support hand side to take the target away from myself.

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I haven’t thought about spending money on a weapon mounted light except for perhaps a gun I might buy for home defense, but that’s usually my carry pistol. But anyways, I’ve never thought about spending the money on a weapon mounted light because of the issue that you’re required to draw the weapon to see someone and then you can be charged with brandishing a firearm, and possibly assault with a deadly weapon (I’m no legal expert, that last part kinda jumped into my head there). So I always keep my 5.11 penlight that I had bought for work on me. I like it because it’s slim and not bulky. The cons to it are simply that I have to replace the battery after a week to week and a half.

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Home defense scenarios are what came to mide the most for weapon mounted lights but long gun and pistols (as the most likely use) but I’m sure someone out there has a reasonable argument for a weapon light for EDC. But I agree with you though my glock has a light/laser I carry a flashlight because as you said not every dark situation requires a firearm


Now I have thought about getting a laser for my XDS so I can be more accurate in dark situations and be more sure of my shot placement.

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@luke_ouellette I have a laser sight for one of the carry guns I have. I used it for a while but, realized that it was becoming a cruth for my marksmanship and, stopped using it. You might have completely different results than I did. Just food for thought.


Indeed it is. I’m already a good shot but I haven’t had the chance to go past 5 yards. I can shoot a silhouette between the eyes just fine at 5 yards with great accuracy. I just need to get better with rapid firing my XDS as I was trained with my Security 9 in my CCW class.


Speed will come with practice. Just be patient. :grin:


Yeah I know. It doesn’t help that I haven’t had much time to practice on the range anyways since I got the pistol to begin with.


Dry fire practice goes a long way. I like to use a Barrelblok along with a MantisX. The Barrelblok takes the place of snap caps and, the MantisX connects to the accessory rail and, connects via Bluetooth to your phone or tablet to analyze your trigger pull and, there are other features. The MantisX can be used for dry fire, live fire and, even BB guns.


Huh. Interesting.
I really should try dry fire sometime. Do you just draw and shoot like you normally would except with a completely empty gun? And what do you use for a target when dry firing?


When you dry fire it’s best to do it in a room/area completely free of ammo to avoid even the slightest chance of an accident. Pretty much other than the lack of ammo you just practice like normal. You can use anything you like as your target but, just to add a bit more safety stick to the 4 fundamentals of gun safety. Modern guns tend to be robust enough to dry fire with an empty chamber but, just for piece of mind and, to protect your firing pin I would suggest either snap caps or, a Barrelblok. I prefer a Barrelblok.

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The only mounted lights I have are on my AR-15carbine, this would be for clearing my home only, I can turn it on and off very quickly for a quick glimpse, I also have one on my M&P 15-22, we use them in indoor club competitions. Otherwise, I have a very powerful, yet small LED flashlight that’s very accessible for me, I don’t care for mounted lights on a pistol, it tells the bad guy exactly where you are and even if they can’t see you, they have a target.

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No flashlight on my firearms, I keep a high powered LED flashlight with high and strobe modes operated on at least three 18650 cells in series.

3800 lumen minimim, wide angle with spot beam, I’ve tested these lights in night paintball games, they re effective.


Does anyone have a flashlight with the strobe function? If so, do you like it? Or is more of a headache?


I have had with and without personally I would rather have a sensitive on/off button as I’ve yet to find one with a useful strobe speed. If there is one with a control for the speed of the strobe it maybe worth it


@ 12 and 17 seconds in, years ago night paintball games, my high powered LED flashlight that primarily used on strobe mode but has 5 I can select between for High, medium, low, strobe, and SOS. While the modes can be a pain, I am practiced at it. My high power lights are amazing but I take advantage of the lower power modes in Close quarters as running high power with the light reflection of dull colored objects can blind on high.

I’ve seen many people complain or claim a high powered light even on solid beam not strobe, they claim it gives away your position… yes it can but I use such high powered lights that a glimpse in its direction will blind you so you have a big black dot wherever your looking and only can see a small bit around that dead spot and it lasts for minutes. An opposing person cant see you u less they turn sideways and use their corner vision but if your light turns on. Then they cant see you.

In paintball, such a high powered light made me a priority target. I took little fire though as they could not see me. My teammate spread far to my sides took the fire.

In a practiced at night paintball games, given a high enough powered LED light, it is very effective when used properly, too low power a light and you will be easily seen and identified without disabling the threat. Most firearm mountable lights in their power level fall under the category of being too lower in output to be effective.

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With practice it is a great feature. It does all three things i need out of a flashlight. It allows me to assess a threat, it gives me concealment from that threat, and it disorients them. As with any piece of equipment you carry with the expectation that it may save your life one day train with it

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I use the Itarget to dry fire.


I have read that when you use the light you close your dominant eye so you can see better in the dark once the light is turned off. Is that a thing?

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Why do pirates wear eyepatches when they are not missing eyes.

So when you battle in the dark hold of the ship you can flip up the patch and one eye pupil is opened up for quick low light vision.