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Old 06-10-2020, 11:46 AM
Kevin Rohrer Kevin Rohrer is online now
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Light Recommendation?

Since I plan to carry my STI this Fall (once our "esteemed" Governor and his test-tube assistant allow Schools to re-open) and it has a light rail, am considering getting a light for it. The light will not be mounted; will carry it in a pouch on my belt and will mount and use it as needed.

Any recommendations for a rail-mounted light?
Member: Orange Gunsite Family, NRA-Life, and the American Legion.

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All my 1911s are in .45acp. Why? Because size matters.--Me
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Old 06-10-2020, 11:50 AM
bradsvette bradsvette is offline
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Surefire X-300, or X-400 if you want a laser too. Yes they are expensive, but there's a reason for that.

Last edited by bradsvette; 06-11-2020 at 07:09 AM.
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Old 06-10-2020, 03:45 PM
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Grandpas50AE Grandpas50AE is offline
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Currently I'm using a Streamlight TLR-6, but mine is the non-rail 1911 configuration - they also have them for railed guns. I've seen several people also report that the Streamlight TLR-8 is a very good light (also with laser) as well.
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Old 06-10-2020, 06:23 PM
Kevin Rohrer Kevin Rohrer is online now
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I've got a red dot light on mine, so no laser needed. Will look into both of these lights. Thanks!
Member: Orange Gunsite Family, NRA-Life, and the American Legion.

Don't trust Cavery Grips/American Gripz/Prestige Grips. He WILL rip you off.
All my 1911s are in .45acp. Why? Because size matters.--Me
Weapon capacity is important for those planning to miss a lot.--Bruce Nelson
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Old 06-10-2020, 08:49 PM
mark2734 mark2734 is offline
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Please do NOT carry your light separate. Your just asking for a gunshot wound to your own hand.

Several major LE agencies studied this in the early 2000s when weapon mounted lights started becoming widely available.

The general conclusion was under stress trying to attach something to the underside of your weapon, which has to start from IN FRONT of the gun, is a bad bad idea.

True the Streamlight TLR-1 style can be mounted from the side, but that's far slower then the Surefire slide on from the front style.

While I'm absolutely certain numerous people are going to respond about having ice water running through their veins and they can perfectly manipulate their weapon with a hoard of wild animals ripping their legs off, reality is rarely found behind a keyboard.

As for your original question of which light, it's true the Surefire is top of the line, but Streamlight is 95% at less then half the cost. The recent versions of the TLR-1 are rated for 1000 lumens and are a proven design. The new compact TLR-7 is much smaller and rated for 500 lumens, with the advantage of several types of switches depending on end user preference.

Last edited by mark2734; 06-10-2020 at 08:53 PM.
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Old 06-11-2020, 05:39 AM
rangertrace rangertrace is offline
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Old 06-11-2020, 07:02 AM
M-Peltier M-Peltier is offline
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Location: Florida
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My opinion is that if you wish to use a flashlight and carry a firearm, the average person would be better served by a small, bright well made handheld, and practice one of the many techniques to shoot with it. a gun mount type flashlight is not very well suited to hand held use. Kinda awkward and easy to drop. Especially in a fast paced emergency, many of witch will not require you to draw your gun, but you may need light. If your light is gun mounted, then you need to point your firearm at every one and anything to identify them. This may not really be desirable, and require a second light. My favorite handheld is a Surefire Z2 with a LED Malkoff reflector bulb upgrade. If it absolutely must be a weapon mount type the Surefire and Streamlight are both solid choices.
Ex-Military, 20+ years 3-Gun competitor, Colt certified Armorer, NRA Instructor, NSRT Officer-Retired, LGS Guru.
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Old 06-11-2020, 07:18 AM
DRM813 DRM813 is online now
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I always carry a flashlight and a light mounted pistol on duty.

I too agree that a duty pistol should have the light mounted on it. Way too many things to do in a critical incident other than fumble with trying to attach/secure a light. If I remember right you just got a nice leather Ted Blocker holster for your pistol without the light attachment. I would encourage you to bite the bullet and get the holster with the light attachment.

I have a Streamlight TRL-1 on my stacactto P. Both the surefire and streamlight lights are 1000 lumens but I like the fact the steamlight does not stick out as far as the surefire. The streamlight does stick out a little to act as a standoff if the pistol is used in close contact but not as far as the surefire. I own/use lots of surefire lights starting back in the early 90's with the 6P's, so not bashing Surefire but they cost more and I do not believe you get the value over a Streamlight.

Last edited by DRM813; 06-11-2020 at 07:23 AM.
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Old 06-11-2020, 04:54 PM
Hawkeye fan Hawkeye fan is offline
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I would recommend the X300U but only if you're going to keep it mounted on the pistol and have a light bearing holster.

Now, if you don't want to keep a light on your pistol then I would recommend that you use a good hand held light then get the Thyrm SwitchBack for the light. This is a ring that goes onto your light and allows you to keep positive control of your light and use a two hand grip on your pistol.

When using the light with the pistol you activate the light by using your thumb to push forward on the Thyrm which drives the tail cap switch back into my middle finger.

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Old 06-11-2020, 09:56 PM
OZ 1911 OZ 1911 is offline
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Surefire x300/400 - don't compromise on weapon lights
"The pistol, learn it well, carry it always..." ~ Jeff Cooper
The thorn defends the rose, yet it is peaceful and does not seek conflict.

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Old 06-11-2020, 10:06 PM
jasonj jasonj is offline
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Location: AZ, phoenix
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Originally Posted by Kevin Rohrer View Post
Since I plan to carry my STI this Fall (once our "esteemed" Governor and his test-tube assistant allow Schools to re-open) and it has a light rail, am considering getting a light for it. The light will not be mounted; will carry it in a pouch on my belt and will mount and use it as needed.

Any recommendations for a rail-mounted light?
Buy the correct rail mounted holsterfor your gun first. I've been an LE low light instructor for 18 years, no one condones or teaches pouch carry for a weapon mounted light. If you must do that get a good handheld. Failure to follow standard training norms opens you up to liability.

If you're left handed pm me I have a safariland 1911 WML holster holster laying around.
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Old 06-15-2020, 12:19 AM
jnc36rcpd jnc36rcpd is offline
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I hate to jump on the bandwagon, but I agree that one is better off with either a larger holster to accommodate the pistol with light attached or going with just a handheld. I know the doctrine to draw quickly and holster slowly. I largely agree with it, but it isn't entirely practical for either law enforcement or self-defense.
Pistol are often presented as contingent threat options. Until we challenge or otherwise observe the bad guy, we're not sure if deadly force is lawful or authorized. If it turns out to be a no-shoot scenario, you don't want to be screwing around with your light before holstering up if you need to handcuff, transition to a less-lethal, or go hands on. Remember the bad guy has a vote in this scenario. If you are in plainclothes, you definitely want to be holstered before uniform good guys spot you.

I recall a class at an IALEFI RTC where the instructor recounted driving down a street and seeing another officer dancing backwards with hand in the workspace as someone pursued him. An officer had attached his pistol light during the confrontation. The suspect evolved into a no-shoot target and the officer was desperately trying to detach his pistol light to go hands on.

I'm waiting for a JM Custom Kydex IWB holster that will take my TLR-1, but I'll go to a smaller light if need be. I would not carry a pistol-mounted light unless the pistol could be holstered with it attached/
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Old 08-29-2020, 09:54 AM
MEH92 MEH92 is online now
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It's hard to beat the SF X300/400 but Streamlight makes very nice lights as well. Whatever you choose, leave it mounted on the light. Also, carry a handheld so you don't point your gun at everything you want to illuminate. When I worked night shift (MANY moons ago) I always had two lights on me. The backup was a small 2xAA Streamlight in my vest pocket and the other was a rechargeable on my belt. That was way before the advent of the high performance lights we enjoy now. I found that I needed that backup on more than one occasion, even if it was just to loan it out on a call.
"Only strength can cooperate. Weakness can only beg." - Dwight D. Eisenhower

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Old 09-15-2020, 10:01 PM
INV136 INV136 is online now
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Back in the 80's I bought a Streamlight rechargeable light for use on duty in the Border Patrol. It output something like 35,000 cp. Years later I bought a Surefire P6 pocket type light after I transferred to Investigations. Weapon mounted lights weren't that common back then, nor were LED lights.

I've found Surefire lights to be top quality throughout my career. When Surefire finally came out with their pistol mounted lights I bought several of them. But, Surefire was always 10 years behind the ball in LED light technology. Back in the mid 2000's I bought several Elektrolumens led lights that output 1,000 lumens for a pocket carry light and 2,000 lumens for a belt carried larger light.

It was only within the last 7 or 8 years that Surefire finally started catching up with higher powered LED lights. My last Surefire pistol light was a X300. But, I didn't like the lower power, about 500 lumens, and the crappy thumb set screw to attach and tighten the light to the weapon's rail. That screw was just a loose screw that you had to tighten.

This was one of the few times that I preferred the Streamlight TLR 2 HL G pistol light/green laser because it outputted 800 lumens and had a green laser for about the same price as the Surefire without a laser. Plus, the Streamlight had a spring loaded thumbscrew which made it a lot easier to put on or take off the light from the weapon's rail.

Also, the Surefire had two small, plastic balls that you pressed on to rotate the rocker switch, to activate the light. The switch using the plastic balls was a lot stiffer to activate then the Streamlight and the balls were easier for your finger to slip off of. The Streamlight uses plastic nubs and the switch was smoother and easier to turn on and off.

I have the Streamlight TLR 2 HLG lights for all of my railed pistols.

As for the comments about weapon mounted lights requiring the user to point their pistol at people to identify threats in the dark, that is totally false and shows ignorance. With any decent pistol light (500 or more lumens) you keep your muzzle pointed at the low ready (muzzle pointed at 45 degree downward) when your are checking an area. The splash of light is plenty to illuminate anyone with enough light to identify threats. Of course this is only if you have your weapon drawn because of possible threats.

In the normal course of duty, I keep my weapon mounted light in a pouch or a pocket to be used if the situation dictated. I always have an EDC pocket light, which I still carry now that I'm retired and I would be using that pocket light (Elektrolumens EDC 1,000 lumen led light using a rechargeable lithium 18650 battery) to illuminate a dark area when I do not have my weapon drawn. I would only draw my weapon and attach the weapon mounted light if I felt there was a possible threat. I would still keep the muzzle at low ready and not point it at anyone, unless, the threat was imminent.

My experience has been that I am much more accurate and quicker to engage threats with a weapon mounted light than using a separate hand held flash light in my weak hand. I learned this years ago when my agency conducted a night time outdoor qualification course of fire. They used our regular quarterly firearms qualifications course of fire, just at night. We were told to bring our issued hand held flashlights (Streamlight Stinger) or any personally owned lights including weapons mounted lights (which they were too cheap to issue, but allowed personally purchased weapon mounted lights).

I was the only one using a weapon mounted light and all of the others used their Streamlight flashlights. I was quicker to engage the target and much more accurate than all of the other agents with their hand held lights. Also, my score was pretty close to my daytime score. That could not be said for all of the others. The majority of them easily dropped 20 or more points more than normal. Especially the last eight shots fired at the 25 yard line from barricade position. Fortunately, the night course of fire was only a familiarization course to show them how things are a lot more difficult to accurately engage a threat in the dark and was not counted towards their quarterly qualification scores.
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Old 09-16-2020, 11:10 PM
tjpaxton tjpaxton is offline
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I like Streamlight TLR-1S, it has constant light or strobe light feature. $115 on Amazon. 300 Lumens.
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