Review: Solarforce Skyline 2

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old4570
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Review: Solarforce Skyline 2

 

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Purchased from : http://www.solarforce-sales.com/  just after Christmas and arrived in the first week of the new year .  

I took advantage of the sale solarforce-sales was having , and since I found the Skyline 2 to be one of the more interesting lights that I have wanted to own , I simply could not resist the siren song of a sale , and here we are , so first some pictures for you to enjoy . 

 

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First Impressions :


It is very distinct , and does stand out from the crowd , and to me , very attractive , in a mechanical sort of way . The Skyline 2 is very well put together , double O rings in the head and a O ring for the tail cap [ all lubed by the way ] , and the threads are very smooth , and everything is nice and tight , the tolerances are really kept to a minimum , in a nut shell , the Skyline 2 is top shelf all the way with very nice even anodizing and clean machining on the body , Solarforce really went all out on this one .


 If your sick of the usual run of P60 hosts and want to try something a little different , well I did .  I took the Skyline 2 for a walk the other evening , and I found it very easy to carry , it's a little heavier than say the L2P , but not noticeably so when you go walking with it . Now when using the light , the beam is some what narrow , especially after having become accustomed to XP-G equipped lights . It does throw though , very well for such a compact light , and will easily out throw all my XR-E XP-G non thrower lights [ P60 ] . The ramping feature is built into the tailcap , and to activate one simply holds the clicky down when turning it on [ Dont lift off till it ramps ] , after this you can ramp up and down to your hearts content . 


Description Borrowed from Solarforce.hk website : 



 

-             Uses a CREE XR-E (WC-R2) LED

-             Aluminum alloy reflector with smooth reflective surface for extreme lighting range up to 200m

-             Micro processor for various output modes and adjustable output levels with current regulation

-             Protective circuit design for preventing over-discharging and reversed polarity of batteries

-             High strength aluminum alloy body with Mil-spec hard-anodized finish

-             Stainless steel bezel

-             Strengthened ultra-clear glass lens

-             Input voltage: 2.7V - 6.0V (18650 x 1 pcs or CR123A x 2pcs)

-             Working temperature: -40 to 60 deg. Celsius

-             Waterproof capability: IPX-8 standard

-             Runtime* with

n            18650 battery x 1, at

u          Approx. 200 lumens: 2.5 hour

u          Approx. 1 lumen: 250 hours

n            CR123A battery x 2, at

u          Approx. 260 lumens: 2 hours

u          Approx. 1 lumens: 120 hours

-             Operation (when the flashlight is turned off):

n            Press once and release (< 0.5 second): turn on

n            Press constantly (> 0.5 second): output adjusting mode from 100% to 5% (release to stay). Press constantly again to activate the output adjusting mode from 5% to 100%

n            Press twice and release (< 0.5 second): strobe mode

-             Length, Head Diameter, Body Diameter: 130mm, 33.7mm, 25.4mm

-             Weight: 124g (without battery)



Some Performance Figures :


Lets start with 18650 ..


High = 200Lumen , I measured 0.83A and 207L when using the MM  

Turning the light as low as it would go , returned about 1L 


2 x CR123A Primaries 


High = 264L which faded to 256L  I measure some 1.2A [ same 256L ] 

As low as it would go was about 2L


No Tail Cap 


18650 = 220L

2 x CR123 = 264L


Throw measured in Lux @ 1 Meter 


18650 = 12200Lux @ 1meter

2 x Cr123 = 14600Lux @ 1meter 


Would seem that Solarforce is rather spot on with the estimations for output , which is nice to see . 


Afterthoughts .

I would love to see this light with a decent 4.2v driver [ single 18650 ] , and driving the emitter @ say 1400mA .

I have to say , one of my better buys , and if your a little tired of the usual run of P60 lights and still want a single cells light [ 18650 ] then perhaps you need to look at the Skyline 2 . Its the same size as a P60 host , and is very unique [ in a attractive sort of way ] looking and will really stand out in a crowd . The Skyline 2 is very well made , and holding it just gives you confidence that its a quality product , and my only complaint is the battery set up , it performs best on those nasty little Primaries , it really wants to be single 18650 , but I guess you cant please everyone .  


Beamshots tonight ! 

 

http://makeagif.com/i/ypsZ70  Animated Gif !  

 

Just a note , the worst possible conditions for showcasing a thrower , its 10pm and the sky is still lit up by the setting sun ..

The R2 is my best , about 300OTF , and I also took the XM-L from KD along , yeah , I think 600+ OTF Lumens makes a difference .

Unfortunately for the skyline , it has a bit of a narrow beam and not the best location or conditions to show it of . + It really does throw much better than the other lights , only the camera just cant do it justice , one day , I will have to get a Digital SLR ...

 Always remember , the easiest thing in the world to do , is to expel hot air from your lungs and through some vocal chords ..
The resulting sound may , or may not be worth listening too ….

 

Edited by: sb56637 on 08/26/2014 - 17:22
sb56637
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Ooops! Sorry, I missed this one! Nice looking light, I wish they had a 1xAA version... Hint-hint Solarforce.

Frontpage'd and sticky'd.

Sweet pictures, as usual, from Old4570. Thanks!

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ezeqdb
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Excelent review, pictures.. and flashlight.. I think the XRE led can be replaced with an XPG, as the reflector is screwed to the drop in, and it wont rattle. You will have more lumens, a bigger hostspot and more spill.. what do you think about it?

 

This is an actually beautiful flashlight.. unfortunatly it is underdriven with 1x18650 Frown

"no le temo a la oscuridad, la oscuridad me teme a mí"

old4570
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Driver mod !  First ... Will see about a 1400mA 4.2v single mode driver in the pill ... Some time down the track .. 

XP-G ?  Ive got plenty of XP-G lights .  

 Always remember , the easiest thing in the world to do , is to expel hot air from your lungs and through some vocal chords ..
The resulting sound may , or may not be worth listening too ….

 

ezeqdb
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I just think XPG are more useful: more efficient, more lumens, bigger hotspot. Unless you want a nice thrower.

 

Do you think it is possible to use a 1400 mA driver? or a 2800 one with an XML? (I don't know what the circuitry of the tailcap do). 

"no le temo a la oscuridad, la oscuridad me teme a mí"

old4570
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I put a 1400mAh driver in my Skyline 1 .. Works fine ...

Tailcap circuitry ramps the output ..  So rather than modes , you just ramp it to the level you want 1L - 200L [ 18650 ] , anywhere in between . 

For now , I want to keep it as is , once the newness wears off , I will see about a driver mod ..

After that ?  , Looking at the shelf , there are at least a dozen P60 lights ready to go ... [ 15 ] 

1 x SST 50 / 1 x Dual XP-G R5 / XP-G R5 x 3 / XR-E x 6 / XM-L x 3 / XP-E x 1 

And I have quite a few pills , and no bodies ...  Hmmm - a C1 maybe ... 

 Always remember , the easiest thing in the world to do , is to expel hot air from your lungs and through some vocal chords ..
The resulting sound may , or may not be worth listening too ….

 

ezeqdb
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No.. please.. I hope Solarforce don't sell it anymore by tomorrow.. I must not buy more flashlights..

"no le temo a la oscuridad, la oscuridad me teme a mí"

FlashPilot
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Well darn you again for doing this! First I fell for the Skyline 1... and now the "two". I must say, the distinctive machining looks absolutely stunning. My thoughts about accumulating so many flashlights is that I will be able to mod my favorites well into the future... and it feeds the sickness right along with my other hobbies. At least I'm incorporating flashlights into many of the things I do. LOL! The "two" surely looks like a fav for a long time to come. It just screams "high tech" and damn good looking! Thanks for the great review. Looking forward to you tearing the living guts out of this thing like you did to your "one"! Its probably to early to tell, but do you think heat management is better than the typical light of this size, or is the machine work more for aesthetics than function? I wonder how it would manage heat @2.8A with an XML. Yeah, I know it would probably be pushing it if on for more than 5 min, but you never know.
Have you tried to dedome any XML's yet? 
old4570
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Heatsinking should be fine , it takes a 16mm round base/star ...

 

De-dome a XM-L , no , havent tried that .. Did it by accident to a XP-G R5 , still works .. One day ill find a light to put it in 

 Always remember , the easiest thing in the world to do , is to expel hot air from your lungs and through some vocal chords ..
The resulting sound may , or may not be worth listening too ….

 

Nautic
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sb56637 wrote:

 

Ooops! Sorry, I missed this one! 

 

 

Its still there with a discounted price!

Cheap quality is good - Expensive crap isn´t

FlashPilot
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old4570 wrote:

Heatsinking should be fine , it takes a 16mm round base/star ...

My concern with driving an XML @ 2.8A in this host is the lack of threads (contact area) to transmit the heat from the body to the head. What do you think? Does the head get as warm as the body?

old4570
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Lack of threads = To the head yes , its just a very narrow threaded part on the pill ..

I need to drill some holes to remove it [ When the newness has worn off ] 

ATM heat is not an issue .. , One could try wrapping the reflector in Al-foil , and doing the foil trick , should one Mod it to XM-L 

 Always remember , the easiest thing in the world to do , is to expel hot air from your lungs and through some vocal chords ..
The resulting sound may , or may not be worth listening too ….

 

ezeqdb
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I didn't understand.. drill holes to remove what from where? how is this related to the increasing of heatsink?

"no le temo a la oscuridad, la oscuridad me teme a mí"

old4570
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The pill that screws into the body , that the LED sits on ..  To remove it , I will need to drill 2 small holes , so I can remove it ..

I dont want to damage the threads for the head , or reflector , removing the pill . 

 Always remember , the easiest thing in the world to do , is to expel hot air from your lungs and through some vocal chords ..
The resulting sound may , or may not be worth listening too ….

 

ezeqdb
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I thought you wanted to increase the heat transmision between the head and the dropin with that, I didn't understood. 

"no le temo a la oscuridad, la oscuridad me teme a mí"

Hayley
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Laughing

sb56637
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old4570 wrote:

I have to say , one of my better buys , and if your a little tired of the usual run of P60 lights and still want a single cells light [ 18650 ] then perhaps you need to look at the Skyline 2 . Its the same size as a P60 host

Quick dumb question: The Skyline 2 is a P60 compatible host or not?

Thanks!

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jamesearljonesi...
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1002680i.jpg

does'nt look like it. the reflector screws onto the body.

03/04/16 

 

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Match
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It's not compatable.  The pill is mounted in the body, and is a bugger to remove.  During upgrading my skyline II witha 1.4a driver I had to destroy the original...complete pita!

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Thanks for clearing that up!

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Piers
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Yeah, it's rather a shame both of the Skylines are so anoying to upgrade. The driver is held in place by the push fit brass piece you can see in Match's second photo, sadly it's pushed in to place either with a press of some kind or a bloody big hammer Silly

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When I look at both Skylines, it appears that it would be the easiest thing in the world to design these bad boys so that at least the brass base of a normal P60 drop-in could be screwed in.  How awesome would it be to drop some powerhouse combination in either of these fine flashlights.  The Skyline 2 will probably be my next purchase.

lovescheapthrowersFoy

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the masterpiece pro-1 is still on my list. maybe theyll lower the price.

03/04/16 

 

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Foy
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I've read nothing but good about the Masterpiece Pro, probably one of the best throwers available.  You can get the head by itself for $43.99 and just screw it onto an L2P/L2.  It has the same finish as an L2P I think.  Now that I look on their site, they're throwing in an L2i as well.

I'm still itching for that M8, though.

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maybe you can Foyify that head and send SF sales a prototype. With the money youll be making from Foybezels INC. you can buy plenty of M8s. Im actually ordering 2 grey l2is for coworkers tonight. how have your runtimes been on them. and which leds have you used.  thx

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The L2i, you mean?  I've got the UF 3-mode XM-L in there with an 18650.  I have not run it down significantly but so far it seems to behave just like an L2P/L2 with the same set-up.  I need to incorporate run times in my reviews but I get tired of waiting.   I've been using it at work this week and it's fast becoming one of my top lights.  This combination (L2i/XM-L) is a seriously potent flashlight for $25 complete.  Your coworkers are going to love it.

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Piers
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I wonder how a Masterpiece Pro with an XM-L would be vs. an M8...

 

It is a shame the P60 hasn't been expanded much, if you could just screw the brass pills into another head with a large reflector that would be great...especially if the reflector screwed into the head as well for maximum contact.