[BLF Joint-Development] WildTrail BLF Tactical Flashlight

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texas shooter
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BurningPlayd0h wrote:
texas shooter wrote:
Two very different UI’s should have two different lights.

This light will never compete with Surefire, Malkoff, etc. There is no sense trying to put it into the same market niche, it will be a total failure. A cheaper and/or better Klarus or Acebeam competitor I can see being a reality.

I believe that is what they should do exactly. They will not sink or swim on only one or two models. Offer a tactical model that is simple, durable and cost competitive. Offer a duty or tacticool light that rounds out that niche with the same simple, durable and cost competitive. Add some mass for heat management and durability. Make it belt comfortable. Keep it absolutely waterproof, drop proof, potted, TIR lense, well designed. Surefire, Elzetta and Malkoff used this method. Do it cheaper and earn a name in the market, have some faith in them. The original post was for a Wildfire BLF Tactical Flashlight. This has morphed into a different direction with lots of bells and whistles putting them into direct competition with all the others. I have plenty of those lights. I would prefer more truly tactical and duty built.

ArmyTek has a method for two UI’s. Head tight on/off only, slight turn and the modes appear. That’s a compromise that could on feel alone be done.

I have to ask how does a multi or complicated UI improve that SHTF light or is this a deviation from the mission.

Deputy Dog
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My 2 cents.

The “TACTICAL” light that I’m always looking for is the one that gets the most light down range the quickest.

I suggest a Tactical rating system. Something like this:

From lockout.
Draw from pocket or belt to Turbo, under 1second = Excellent,
under 2 seconds = Good,
under 3 seconds = Fair,
more than 3 seconds = fail.

BurningPlayd0h
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texas shooter][quote=BurningPlayd0h wrote:
texas shooter wrote:
Two very different UI’s should have two different lights.

Keep it absolutely waterproof, drop proof, potted, TIR lense, well designed. Surefire, Elzetta and Malkoff used this method.

They are also US-made and have name recognition and reputation allowing their higher prices (and presumably profit margin)

Do it cheaper and earn a name in the market, have some faith in them.

Would you trust a light at half the price of one of those to be of the same standard? Or even cheaper? If its a similar price why not go with those proven brands, including Klarus or Acebeam?

ArmyTek has a method for two UI’s. Head tight on/off only, slight turn and the modes appear. That’s a compromise that could on feel alone be done.

This is exactly the kind of thing I’m envisioning for it, or even better IMO, needing to hold down the side switch while screwing down the head like Armytek does to activate momentary mode on their headlamps. Almost impossible to do accidentally*

I have to ask how does a multi or complicated UI improve that SHTF light or is this a deviation from the mission.

It adds a while new market for the light. Many people without the use for a true “duty” light here would have little or interest without some features that all their other lights have. If including it doesn’t significantly increase cost, and the settings can be hidden away forever by those that don’t want them…

I’m not saying this need to have full-featured Anduril, but at least offering something like Bistro, or a UI similar to Olight and Thurnite’s in addition to a 100% only or 100/10% mode groups is essential. This brand really only has name recognition (and recognition of the D80’s quality) on this forum AFAIK. For me in a SHTF light, instant access to a low or firefly is important for example, since I’m more worried about blinding myself others than instantly getting tons of light out, and there are already plenty of lights that can do that very well, while still offering other hidden features. There are also plenty of lights that do “dead simple” exceptionally well too. So why not have the whole package in one light? That sounds like a great way to stand out from the pack IMHO.

This light is going to have a driver capable of fitting in at least some options, I just don’t see any good reason to leave those out. There is really no disadvantage beside some vague sense of “deviating from the mission” which to me it really isn’t. This is a “tactical:” light, but also being designed for BLF where people know what they want, and that is often very different things.

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BurningPlayd0h

Quote:
*There is really no disadvantage *beside some vague sense of “deviating from the mission” which to me it really isn’t. This is a “tactical:” light, but also being designed for BLF where people know what they want, and that is often very different things.

Can you explain how it’s “tactical” in an emergency? I think there are some BLF people who know what they want, but… don’t know what they want it for.

Quote:
For me in a SHTF light, instant access to a low or firefly is important for example, since I’m more worried about blinding myself others than instantly getting tons of light out, and there are already plenty of lights that can do that very well, while still offering other hidden features. There are also plenty of lights that do “dead simple” exceptionally well too. So why not have the whole package in one light? That sounds like a great way to stand out from the pack IMHO.

It’s going to appeal outside of the “tactical” pack alright. There are plenty of “ALL purpose” lights that fill your needs as well, they’re just not “tactical” when the SHTF.

owkaye
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Quote:
This light is going to have a driver capable of fitting in at least some options …
That’s fine, but isn’t this the definition of a “tacticool” light?

Quote:
This is a “tactical” light …
I disagree. IMO a tactical light has one clicky on-off tail switch and no other UI options. Therefore, if this light has any additional options shouldn’t it be referred to as a “tacticool” light?

Personally I would really like a true tactical light at a bargain price, and YES I would trust it if it were half the price of name-brand tactical lights.

Whether or not this is the thread for this type of light remains to be seen, but so far it seems the goal of this flashlight project is to design a tacticool light, not a tactical light. Am I correct?

Owkaye

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One bonus to a more complex driver is a settable high. The light should always come on in high mode, even if it’s just a one mode tactical light, but I prefer a rock steady ~500 lumen output and some people likely want it to come on at 1000+.

The concern is durability/reliability versus complexity. Can a complex driver be implemented in such a way that no amount of frantic manhandling or abuse will make it behave unexpectedly? The FW3A UI fails that criteria. Most non-tactical lights fail that criteria.

BurningPlayd0h
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Deputy Dog wrote:
BurningPlayd0h
Quote:
*There is really no disadvantage *beside some vague sense of “deviating from the mission” which to me it really isn’t. This is a “tactical:” light, but also being designed for BLF where people know what they want, and that is often very different things.

Can you explain how it’s “tactical” in an emergency?
I don’t understand what you’re asking.
I think there are some BLF people who know what they want, but… don’t know what they want it for.

Quote:
For me in a SHTF light, instant access to a low or firefly is important for example, since I’m more worried about blinding myself others than instantly getting tons of light out, and there are already plenty of lights that can do that very well, while still offering other hidden features. There are also plenty of lights that do “dead simple” exceptionally well too. So why not have the whole package in one light? That sounds like a great way to stand out from the pack IMHO.

It’s going to appeal outside of the “tactical” pack alright. There are plenty of “ALL purpose” lights that fill your needs as well, they’re just not “tactical” when the SHTF.
That seems to support the idea that this light could fill a niche that remains fairly empty. If this light is made to have the same feature set, options, and UI as something with better quality assurance, brand recognition and history… what is the appeal?

extremesquared wrote:
One bonus to a more complex driver is a settable high. The light should always come on in high mode, even if it’s just a one mode tactical light, but I prefer a rock steady ~500 lumen output and some people likely want it to come on at 1000+.

The concern is durability/reliability versus complexity. Can a complex driver be implemented in such a way that no amount of frantic manhandling or abuse will make it behave unexpectedly? The FW3A UI fails that criteria. Most non-tactical lights fail that criteria.

Bingo, one of my favorite features of Bistro/Biscotti is the mode groups that max out at 50%. I think holding an e-switch while cycling the light on/off is a pretty solid way of selecting these different mode groups, or a LARGE number of clicks that must be executed quickly.

It’s anecdotal, but none of the first responders, SAR volunteers, etc. that I know regularly use lights that are single-mode. It really demands always bringing a second light that has lower modes for everything else you would use a flashlight for. I know I wouldn’t trust this light for a weapon mount (okay, maybe for hunting) for years after its been disassembled, abused and analyzed by people smarter and harder on their tools than me.

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BurningPlayd0h

Quote:
Quote:
Can you explain how it’s “tactical” in an emergency?
I don’t understand what you’re asking.

Have you ever used a flashlight for self-defense during an attack?

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I’m interested!

Please no crenelated bezel with such a compact lamp. It destroys the lining of the trouser pocket.

owkaye
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I think most of the people here have their own ideas or definitions of what “tactical” means when used to describe a flashlight, because apparently there is no widely accepted definition of a “tactical” flashlight.

Maybe the solution is for someone to create a clearly defined list of features this light should have — and a corresponding list of features it should not have — and do not give it a descriptive name until the end, after all features are finalized and no longer debatable.

Owkaye

texas shooter
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t-soung wrote:
I’m interested!

Please no crenelated bezel with such a compact lamp. It destroys the lining of the trouser pocket.

Mild rounded crenelated bezel is plenty. Must be steel and large enough to protect the head from drops.

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texas shooter wrote:
t-soung wrote:
I’m interested!

Please no crenelated bezel with such a compact lamp. It destroys the lining of the trouser pocket.

Mild rounded crenelated bezel is plenty. Must be steel and large enough to protect the head from drops.

For that purpose the nitecore MT1A’s bezel works great for that, protection of the head but not destruction of the pocket. If you were to need an example.

BurningPlayd0h
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Deputy Dog wrote:
BurningPlayd0h
Quote:
Quote:
Can you explain how it’s “tactical” in an emergency?
I don’t understand what you’re asking.

Have you ever used a flashlight for self-defense during an attack?

No, and of I ever planned to carry a light for that purpose I wouldn’t go for the “budget” option, YMMV.

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BurningPlayd0h wrote:
Deputy Dog wrote:
BurningPlayd0h
Quote:
Quote:
Can you explain how it’s “tactical” in an emergency?
I don’t understand what you’re asking.

Have you ever used a flashlight for self-defense during an attack?

No, and of I ever planned to carry a light for that purpose I wouldn’t go for the “budget” option, YMMV.

Now your talking about the real issue. It’s the problem with this thread.

What is the (REAL) reason for building this light?

To quote Lux-Perpetua “The target is nothing less than to get the best +tactical EDC flashlight +with dual switch design and Andúril UI.”

Maybe that’s the best definition of a “tactical light”, a light that someone would bring to (or have with them in) a fight.

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Deputy Dog wrote:
Maybe that’s the best definition of a “tactical light”, a light that someone would bring to (or have with them in) a fight.

That is absolutely implied. The term has been watered down over the years by pseudo-military marketing tomfoolery used by every ebay seller over thousands of mediocre products. This is why I am guessing there are a few of us watching this thread from the sidelines with a healthy amount of skepticism that a tactical light will be the final result.

And a budget Chinese tactical light is not impossible. People were carrying and weapon-mounting Fenix lights in Iraq and Afghanistan because SL/Surefire were ten years behind on LED tech at the time. The old Fenix lights were super simple, proven durable under extreme abuse, and nailed the fundamentals with modern battery and LED tech (although everyone in this case kept using cr123 because they were free).

But this is all working against the crowdfunding (or interest survey based) model you have here. Nobody who wants an actual tactical light is going to buy revision 1.0. We want abuse tests and months of documented reliability post-release. As someone who only buys lights when they get lost and only owns a handful of lights, I am intrigued with the quality of light this forum can produce — a fw3 replaced a 6 year old thrunite of mine that got lost. I’m also not convinced that this format of light is well served by the whims of a flashlight enthusiast internet forum. I apologize for being a negative nancy here.

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Interesting in 2

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Interested in at least 1.

KevinZA1988
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What about the Luxeon V? They are available in 4000K, 5000K, 5700K and 6500K. The beam quality in an OP reflector should be great as well. I haven’t tried it in a SMO reflector yet.

My current tactical light is a Convoy M21A with OP reflector, LD-B4 driver 7 Amps, Luxeon V 5700K. No mode memory, mode sequence 100% – 16% – moon. So when I turn it on, I know it’s gonna full blast. A triple half tap and hold gives me strobe.

I would like a side switch on this project light with similar functionality to Acebeam and Olight. Otherwise I might as well stick to my reliable and powerful custom Convoy M21A.

Armytek Prime C1 Pro, Armytek Prime C2 Pro, Armytek Tiara C1 Pro, Astrolux MF01 Mini, BLF Q8, BLF A6, BLF FW1A, BLF FW3A, BLF FW3C, BLF LT1, Convoy L6, Convoy C8+ , Convoy S3, Convoy M21A, Convoy S11, Emisar D4, Fireflies E07, Jaxman E2L, Lumintop EDC18, Manta Ray C8.2 long version, Olight S1R Baton II special edition series, S2R Baton II, Nitecore HC65, Olight H1R Nova.

https://photos.app.goo.gl/JaJaDv4V838AEJf39

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I’m in for 2,please…

Definitely want crenelated bezel, tail clicky + electronic side switch, and I prefer Anduril…

And yes, I have used a flashlight in self-defense.

Thanks!

-dmm

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Interested

“History doesn’t repeat itself, but it sometimes rhymes,” Mark Twain

After the Apocalypse there will be only 2 things left alive, Cockroaches and Keith Richards

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cheesecheeks wrote:
Interesting in 2

Slayer1 wrote:
Interested in at least 1.

Sharpenologist wrote:
I’m in for 2,please…

Definitely want crenelated bezel, tail clicky + electronic side switch, and I prefer Anduril…

And yes, I have used a flashlight in self-defense.

Thanks!

-dmm


Muto wrote:
Interested

You guys know this has been out for a while now, right?

EDC Rotation: ZL SC62(w) | Jaxman E2L XP-G2 5A | Purple S2+ XPL-HI U6-3A | D4 w/ Luxeon V | RRT-01 | Purple FW3A, 4000K SST20
EagTac D25C Ti | DQG Slim AA Ti | Jaxman E3 | UF-T1 by CRX | Nitecore EX11.2
L6 XHP70.2 P2 4000K FET+7135 | Jaxman M8 | MF02 | Jaxman Z1 CULNM1.TG | Blue S2+ w/ ML Special
Unfinished: Supfire M6 3xXHP50.2, Sofirn C8F, Sofirn SP70
Others: Nitecore EC23 | Nebo Twyst | Streamlight ProTac 1AA | TerraLux LightStar 100

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djozz wrote:
I think the idea of not wanting a FET-driver is that you rather have a lower output but constant and longer.

It think you (should) know the objections against FET DD by now.

You will have to throttle the max output at max battery charge with unfortunate solutions like low drain batteries, high Vf LEDs, not optimal electrical path, PWM-ing too high currents, or simply overdriving the LED beyond preferable levels on a full battery.

This is all unnecessary with FET DD drivers, which aren’t even expensive anymore.

Even a 7135 driver works better than FET DD, in particular for modest output lights such as this project.

Don’t you prefer to have steady output levels? I know i do.

A nice buck driver on a low Vf LED may be even better, plus it makes it possible to use 2x CR123A.

These are more expensive though, but Convoy has the LD29, which could do with better mode spacing and more modes though.

Jerommel
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Lightbringer wrote:
You can have an eswitch in the tail with a driver-in-tail design.

But why is nobody considering a (reverse) clicky Omten 1288 in the side?

Mounted on the charging PCB or sandwiched between the driver and charging PCB.

Then you won’t have to switch the tail switch on to charge it anymore (resulting in a turned on light when the charger is off, which kind of sucks).

Maybe something to consider.

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KevinZA1988 wrote:
What about the Luxeon V? They are available in 4000K, 5000K, 5700K and 6500K. The beam quality in an OP reflector should be great as well. I haven’t tried it in a SMO reflector yet.
I put a 4000K one in my Zanflare F1 and it really brought the F1 to life. Thumbs Up

The low Vf of the Luxeon V makes the double click turbo of the F1 work throughout most of the battery charge, unlike with the XP-L it used to have.
The F1 has a SMO reflector, a fairly deep one, and it works great, and not a lot of tint shift.

Yes, the F1 is a bit large for a single 18650 light, but it’s a comfortable size to hold in your hand.

The only pity of the F1 is that the size could have fit a 21700.

You can’t drill out the battery tube though, because where the O-rings are the outer diameter is only 21mm.

But a 21700 would have justified the size of the F1.

BUT, as i mentioned earlier, they could have put an Omten 1288 in the side instead of the e-switch.

Plenty of room there.

But i don’t know of any decent light that comes with a reverse clicky side switch.

But i know it works just fine, because my last year’s failed scratch build had one and i modded 2 side e-switch lights into side reverse clicky lights.

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Scallywag wrote:
cheesecheeks wrote:
Interesting in 2

Slayer1 wrote:
Interested in at least 1.

Sharpenologist wrote:
I’m in for 2,please…

Definitely want crenelated bezel, tail clicky + electronic side switch, and I prefer Anduril…

And yes, I have used a flashlight in self-defense.

Thanks!

-dmm


Muto wrote:
Interested

You guys know this has been out for a while now, right?

Ah… Facepalm Facepalm Facepalm

But it’s dramatically different than what’s discussed here…
I know that light is out for a while, but i didn’t expect this to be that.

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This driver has a FET, but you can always program a mode group which has on highest mode only full AMC regulated level!
Then Turbo is only available through long press from lowest mode

It combines both regulated and DD into one driver, people need to differ between DD+1 and DD+n+1 driver designs

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Lexel wrote:
This driver has a FET, but you can always program a mode group which has on highest mode only full AMC regulated level!
Then Turbo is only available through long press from lowest mode

It combines both regulated and DD into one driver, people need to differ between DD+1 and DD+n+1 driver designs

True.
But it also depends on how much n is.

…and i still think DD is not such a good idea, although it does solve some thermal issues (if the FET is fast enough).

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Scallywag wrote:
cheesecheeks wrote:
Interesting in 2

Slayer1 wrote:
Interested in at least 1.

Sharpenologist wrote:
I’m in for 2,please…

Definitely want crenelated bezel, tail clicky + electronic side switch, and I prefer Anduril…

And yes, I have used a flashlight in self-defense.

Thanks!

-dmm


Muto wrote:
Interested

You guys know this has been out for a while now, right?

Thot it was another light, my bad. Facepalm
I even have one for sale now.

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You could always remove R4 to shut down the FET if you don’t want it

it is FET+5+1
so 2.1A, light can easily run without getting to the thermal throttle if its set to like 60°C

techguyone
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Hmmm way too tacticool for me, I’ll come back when you decide to do something that really is tactical, rather than gadget ridden.

I’d suggest something similar to the Lumintop ED20-T as an excellent starting point for true tactical.

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