The Best Tactical Flashlight
Any self-respecting prepper/survivalist knows that a tactical flashlight is one of those survival items that you absolutely MUST have. Conventional flashlights are unwieldy, not bright enough, and can’t withstand the knocks and shocks that a tactical flashlight can.
So deciding whether to buy one is a non-issue here. You need one. Furthermore, every member of your family should have a tactical flashlight too.
This will make it much easier during a survival scenario when the lights go out or if you’re camping out in the wilderness. There’ll be no need to share the flashlight, and it’s generally safer if everyone has their tactical torch.
When buying a tactical flashlight, there are a few points that you must be aware of. While there is a wide variety of flashlight models, a few features are important common denominators that most good flashlights will have.
Ensure that the flashlight you’re buying has these features. Everything else is an add-on.
The main purpose of a flashlight is to illuminate your surroundings. Tactical flashlights are much brighter, and you should choose one with a minimum range of 700+ lumens. Ideally, you want one with 1000 lumens like the Nitecore model, which has a range of 200+ meters.
Beam intensity and range are very important too. Go as high as you can afford. It’ll always serve you well.
2. Strobe effect
The strobe effect on your flashlight is for self-defense purposes and is used by most police forces worldwide. It’s non-lethal and can cause temporary blindness to an attacker while you make your getaway.
While a firearm will require you to hit your target, which can be difficult when you’re under stress and enduring an adrenaline dump and tunnel vision – with a tactical flashlight, all you need to do is switch it to strobe mode. Any assailants close to you will be seeing stars for a while, and you can runoff.
You must be able to access your strobe feature in a second. You don’t want it to be difficult to reach. Fiddling with the torch during a potential threat can be deadly – to you.
When you buy a torch with an easy-to-reach strobe switch, make sure you practice flicking it on and off so that it becomes second nature to you.
3. Run time
Run time refers to how long your torch can run with fully charged batteries. It would help if you got a torch that has a relatively long run time. The Nitecore model mentioned earlier has a run time of about 520 hours. That’s excellent.
Whichever model you choose, make sure it can be used for quite a while before the batteries run out. In a survival scenario, you’ll not know when you can charge your batteries. So it’s best to have a torch that goes the distance.
4. What type of batteries does it use?
Integrated rechargeable batteries power some tactical flashlights. Such flashlights should be avoided at all costs. If the power grid goes down during a crisis, your tactical flashlight will be useless (once the battery is depleted) if it can only be charged from a power socket.
What you want is a flashlight that uses disposable lithium-ion/alkaline batteries. You can always stock up on disposable batteries. When the batteries in your torch run out, you can replace them with new ones. Easy peasy.
5. It has to be waterproof
Do not confuse the terms ‘waterproof’ and ‘water-resistant.’ When a tactical flashlight is waterproof, it’ll still work even if you drop it in a pool of water and take it out. That’s the type of flashlight you want.
Water-resistant torches may ‘survive’ if you get some rain on them or if some water splashes on them. But if dropped in a puddle or pool of water, it might die on you because the water can still enter the torch and ruin it.
Always go with waterproof flashlights.
You want your tactical flashlight to be extremely durable. It should be able to withstand knocks, multiple drops, and so on. When used in a close combat situation, your tactical flashlight will become a weapon that causes damage by impact.
If the torch is made out of cheap material, it’ll get dented or even break when dropped or used in combat. You’ll want to get a flashlight that’s made out of anodized aluminum.
The color of your flashlight matters too. You may find it hard to believe, but pink tactical flashlights are being sold.
Avoid them. Nothing about pink is tactical. That’s why almost all police and military units use only black flashlights.
It would help if you thought of your flashlight as an extension of your body. In a survival situation, you’ll be using it for illumination or self-defense. So it has to be lightweight. In this way, you can attach it to your belt without weighing your pants down on one side.
Furthermore, you can always use your tactical flashlight with a firearm by clipping it onto a flashlight ring. So if your flashlight is sturdy but lightweight, it’ll be easier and less tiring to wield it together with your firearm.
9. It must have a toothed bezel
Most of the best tactical flashlights have a ‘jagged’ toothed bezel at the end of the flashlight, usually around the on-off switch. In some models, it surrounds the bulb.
Whatever the case, the jagged bezel has several purposes. If you need to break a window, smashing the bezel on it will do the job.
If you’re using it for self-defense, the bezel will make your moves far more damaging on the attacker, either by scratching or causing more pain upon impact.
Make sure your flashlight has a bezel.
10. Does it feel right?
Finally, when buying a tactical flashlight, it’s a good idea to hold it and see how it feels in your hand. Some men with bigger palms may prefer a larger model, whereas others may prefer a more compact flashlight.
It may not be easy to know for sure how a flashlight feels if you’re buying your flashlight online. The best way to get around this will be to hold a pen-like you would flashlight and see how long it needs to be for you to feel comfortable using it.
Measure the length and choose a flashlight that comes as close as possible to your desired size. The circumference and weight will matter too. So note down the specifications of the product and ascertain if it’s suitable for you.
* In conclusion
Reliable tactical torches last a long time. So, it’s better to save up for a more durable, robust, and proven model than to get a cheap one. There are countless vendors online selling cheap tactical flashlights which are dropshipped from China.
A lot of these flashlights will not hold up under rigorous survival conditions. You’ll want to get a proven tactical flashlight with lots of positive reviews.
Do your research well before buying, and make sure the ten pointers in this article are found in the flashlight you choose.