How things change over the years...The Maglite is actually pretty good

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DB Custom
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Is Everything. This is a forum for flashaholics. Quite simple, isn’t it? Everyone here has gone beyond the norm and wants MORE! But, is this anywhere near average? We are a small percentile of the people. Don’t believe me? Tell anyone you know, or any stranger for that matter, that you just spent $150 on a flashlight. (Did you just spend more than that?) See what they say? We are not normal. This discussion is preaching to the choir.

I have no idea what people do in other countries. Heck, I don’t have much idea what people in the northeast of my own country do. But in the South, here in America MagLight is King! Take a poll, go door to door, ask folks what flashlight sits on top of the refrigerator. Ask how many times a month it’s used. Then ask about the panic that ensues when the lights go out and someone forgot to put the Mag back on top of the fridge when they searched the drawer for a certain sized washer.

Average people want a light for insurance. The best insurance policy is MagLight. Corner store, drug store, convenience store, WalMart, Target, you name it they’re easy to find. Have been for as long as I can remember. Nix that, my memory is horrible! There’s been a black 2D MagLight in the house since they came out with em. The lights before that were truly horrendous! Black plastic head on a yellow body with a single candles worth of light that fell out the front and collapsed like a dying horse. Huge boxes of metal with a rotating head on top that took a monstrous square 6V battery that always seemed to be just about dead, with a feeble glow from the element that defied logic as the cell was known to have been bought right after the great flood.

MagLight revolutionized handheld flashlights in America. Pure and simple. In my house right now, there are 8, with one more in Old Lumens hands for a revision. Only 3 of those are still sporting their incandescent bulb. Such is life. We all grow up, or out, or simply die. When I go, my favorite flashlight will probably still be my most modified…A brilliant red 2D MagLight cut down to 1 cell by JayRob and carrying a 32650 protected Li-ion with 5500mAh capacity. Shining a stunning Cree XM-L T6 at 1000lumens out of a ChicagoX modified ribbed head and doing so through a 45mm TIR. I love looking at it. I love how it feels in my hand. The sheer weight of the thick walled aluminum head is reassuring. And it now has teeth.

What light do I use everyday? My little Titanium CoreTi from MBI, hanging on a titanium curb chain around my neck and boasting a whopping 5 lumens…use it to check the temp at 4 in the morning, the time at 2 AM, find that tiny little bugger of a screw that fell under my desk, read the oil on the dipstick in the garage and every other little thing that comes up where some light is needed. But almost never is that need for 1000 lumens. That’s just for play! Smile And I can do that in quite a few different ways now, yes some of those thanks to China.

Long Live The King, Mag Lights Rule! Smile

And please, people, remember that I cannot and do not try to speak for everyone. I speak from my own personal experience and what I’ve heard from others all my life, right here in Central Texas. What I say doesn’t work for you? Guess you don’t come from my neck o the woods! Wink

Dobanodnao
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I don’t like mag-lights since I actually use my lights, that may sound odd but I’ll explain. Mag-lights are designed to be run off of primary cells (With the exception of “Magchargers” but they cost substantially more if I was to use them) and primary cells are not in this day and age cheap nor convenient for frequent long term use.

I use my lights often during warmer months (Sometimes during cooler months) for outdoor activities, lighting and general purpose. I can be outside and commuting 5x or more during a week with an average of 15 or so minuets where I am stuck in the dark. When I’m really out at dark I can be out for more than five hours where light output is important for around two of such hours so having a light that can’t run at least five hours is quite a disadvantage.

Mag’s don’t offer either in a convenient form or even if they do they simply weight too much and consume too many cells to make it worth doing this more than once or twice a month.

Lions and other lithium based dry cells offer a much higher energy weight ratio and a rechargeable option that allows for even more cell use; If I can use the same cell more than thirty times even at 3x the cost then I’ve broken even regardless of convenience. The fact that the lights are smaller and put out more light is just an added perk.

Either way the majority of people I know still depend on lights that don’t even match up to modern Mag-lights in the slightest with leaking heavy duty batteries that barley function. Mag-Light offers a competitive product for these people (And a good choice considering their robustness) but do not compare in the modern flashaholic world.

It’s 2013, if we can’t have reliable convent light in access than I don’t know where our evolution is going; moving back to primary cells and mag-lights would make no more sense that carrying some lighter fluid and a large wooden stake. I applaud Mag for progressing (As anyone), but do something other than fill a small niche and I’d appreciate you more, what really has come out of them that hasn’t happened somewhere else?

May your reduction of primary cell intake fuel more flashlight purchases Wink

Rufusbduck
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Maglites weekness is its strength. If they didn’t have such poor output, there wouldn’t be nearly as many people trying to fix them. And since everyone knows they are weak lights, when you pull out a souped up model, they’re blown away. They’re everywhere so mods can be shared and inexpensive enough to screw up without breaking the bank. Some people want ready made lights and some like mods. My flashaholism tends toward modding. The fewer changes I’d make the less a light interests me (screwy, I know). I like my new BLF A8, I really like my 14650, chopped, finned, 2.6A U2 1D Minimag with the spare triple Nichia 219 drop in. There’s no doubt the A8 is a better, higher quality light but I can’t make it mine.

Three Tanna leaves to give him life, nine to give him movement. But what if he eats the whole bag?

Scott

Chicago X
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Rufusbduck wrote:
There's no doubt the A8 is a better, higher quality light but I can't make it mine.

This thinking is the very reason for the existence of the $10-billion/year automotive aftermarket industry.

http://wardogsmakingithome.org/index.html

War Dogs, Making it Home - Rescue Dogs for Returning Vets

Rufusbduck
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What are we up to in the flashlight aftermarket industry? I don’t do squat to my truck.

Three Tanna leaves to give him life, nine to give him movement. But what if he eats the whole bag?

Scott

DB Custom
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Rufus you know you want to install a super cool James Bond rotating license plate frame with Quad quad (yes that’s 16!) xm-l2s at 3A each to back tailgaters off! You know you do, come on, admit it! Silly

Dale

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Been looking for the Maglite Solitaire LED, Mini Mag AAA LED, and Mag-Tac.

Werner wrote:
I have no pets so I have too pee on the carpet myself…

“this tiny flashlight was the one that shined best”
Rufusbduck
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DBCstm wrote:
Rufus you know you want to install a super cool James Bond rotating license plate frame with Quad quad (yes that’s 16!) xm-l2s at 3A each to back tailgaters off! You know you do, come on, admit it! Silly

Dale


Actually, what I’d really like for Christmas Santa is a pencil beam thrower I can use to deal with @$$&€£#$ that drive with misaligned headlights. Mount that someplace well disguised and get some payback. Shh, Don’t tell the DOT.

Three Tanna leaves to give him life, nine to give him movement. But what if he eats the whole bag?

Scott

DB Custom
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that will require that you be very very good if the dept is not to know of this! lol I hear ya, you’d think those guys would notice they’re only getting 1 headlights worth of illumination out front, wanna fix something! Or at least avoid their own meeting with DOT.

Pencil beam huh? Can that be pressed out of last years lump of coal……

Dale

Pwardy
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Hi looking for help can anyone recommend any good stores in uK to purchase a rechargeable mag light 5 cell Thanks

flyboy
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MagLite bashers are in their own little world. My first MagLite was a black 3 D cell that I used for more than 20 years. I won my first Mini at a business luncheon more than 30 years ago. It still does duty as one of my wife’s purse/nightstand lights. Of course, it has been modded with an LED module, and Kroll Clickie. My basic requirements for a light have always been: Brighter, and longer run time. With a relatively inexpen$ive LED module, you got it! “Oh”, you may say; “ it costs as much or more, with a new module than a newer whiz-bang Tactical light. Maybe…so what? And who steals a MiniMaglite? Not so. I gave one to my friend, and he left it in his car while it was being serviced. Trusting soul, isn’t he? Gone! Shocked He is working a a security guard, and showed me what he was using for a light…woe! He immediately was sent my 3 D cell light with the pre-Malkovich (?) module. So far, he hasn’t had it stolen, and it has been YEARS! Smile Of course, he loses this one, and he is on his own! Wink

Of the several other Minis I own/have owned, most of which have been given to various family members, I still own 2, which are rotated as nightstand lights. My nephew, the Airline Pilot , afaik, still uses the MiniMag with Led module I gave him 10 or so years ago, although he is now a Captain, and doesn’t do preflights.

I own 6-7 other brands of lights, acquired over the last 15 years or so. They are all good lights, but the worst thing you can ever say about Mag Incan models, is that they are “pretty good lights”. Fairly dim in unmodded condition, fairly short run time, and they do get awfully dim. They are much brighter with a Terralux module, and run time is increased many fold.

I dislike carrying my Luxeon III modded 3 D cell light, because it is heavy…but none of my “wonderlights” have the heft to be used as an impact weapon, and one of the famous name lights failed to run after a small impact. And…I change the batteries once a year, whether they need it or not!

I find the multi-mode frenzy to be just that…more ain’t necessarily better! Bright, Dim, and maybe strobe for calling in an air strike on those noisy neighbor’s parties! Evil I do plan to buy one of the Pro + models, because I find the bright-low modes all that I reasonably need.

I had one of the many mode MiniMaglites, and found it awkward to use, so I sent it to my Granddaughter, (with instructions how to access the most useful modes. She is smarter than me!) as a replacement for the Inova X1 I sent with her.

The newer LED Maglite models..at least the 3 C-cell models are made out of lighter materials…not to say they are flimsy, but I returned one for just that reason. I have recently bought one of the incan 3 c cell lights. Put batteries in it,…didn’t work! Hmmmm, I said…passing strange…swapped bulbs, no luck. Checked the batteries’ expiry date; 2012! That might make a difference, ya think? DUH! Sooo…off to Costco tomorrow, and new batteries, which I am 95% certain will solve the problem.

Say what you will about Maglite’s behind the times design, or their marketing model, or whatever…fact is, the price is generally right, they are attractive and they make pretty good lights, useful enough for just about any need! After all, us Dinosaurs can’t be wrong all the time! Big Smile

P.S. New batteries worked a treat! Who’d a thunk it?

It Is A Fine and Pleasant Madness

feilox
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I used to be a Maglite follower. They were the leader in quality and durability. I think what made so many people piss is just the realization of lumens and LED revolution. Also how slow Maglite reacted towards the massive invasion of LED flashlights nowadays. I mean it wasn’t up until 2 years ago or so that Maglite finally made a LED flashlight. It’s sort of how we feel about domestic product in general sorta like WD taking forever to adopt SSD hard drives or domestic cards doing hybrid/electric motors etc… But yea it does really tick the budget buy off. Spending 30-50 dollars on a maglite only to be outdone by a 10-15 dollar LED flashlight that can output 2-3X the light. I used to be pissed about it but I just realized we just really want Maglite to be modern and successful.

Don wrote:
It sounds like the XM LEDs won’t really be suitable for flashlight use. Pity…

HereAgainAgain
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They were never going to sell out their own heritage. Hence the slow reaction to the LED invasion.
It was a necessary move over to LED. Either that, or go outta business. I’d never run over any Chinese torch with an 18 wheeler – but I’d gladly put my 8-9 year old 6D under – knowing it’d still work on the other side of the hiding.

flyboy
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feilox wrote:
Spending 30-50 dollars on a maglite only to be outdone by a 10-15 dollar LED flashlight that can output 2-3X the light. I used to be pissed about it but I just realized we just really want Maglite to be modern and successful.

I quite agree…but, the odds are the Mag will be percolating along LONG after most of the $10-15 LED lights, or even the $65-100 multi-function Wonderfullights are long gone! And…there is always the comfort of knowing: you get hostile with me and my 3-4-6 C-D cell Mag, I’m gonna whup yo’ Yankee ass! Innocent

It Is A Fine and Pleasant Madness

Rufusbduck
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Is there a single US based company making liion cell flashlights? Is this more a case of the big alkaline cell manufacturers(Duracell, Eveready, Energizer, Rayovac) resisting or fear of lawsuits? Regulation or reluctance?

Three Tanna leaves to give him life, nine to give him movement. But what if he eats the whole bag?

Scott

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HereAgainAgain wrote:
I’d never run over any Chinese torch with an 18 wheeler – but I’d gladly put my 8-9 year old 6D under – knowing it’d still work on the other side of the hiding.

This is the true forte’ of Maglite- durability. They weren’t the only light of this nature being made, but the others were being marketed only to specialty-use groups like Law Enforcement and Tony Maglica saw bigger things. He was also ahead of the others in automated machining so his lights were better made. Once he made the world aware of his product, his business skyrocketed and he dominated the flashlight market worldwide. And then he stopped development, much like Henry Ford did once the Model T took over the automobile market. That allowed smaller competitors to begin selling different better-performing products and they prospered, leaving the old standard behind. It wasn’t that the old standards were not doing the job anymore, but rather that they were being perceived as old-fashioned and obsolete. _For most flashlight uses a Maglite is still good enough at making light, but there are far better choices now for most uses and most users. _

I’m of he opinion that there was a ‘window of time’ where Maglite could have capitalized on it’s reputation and held it’s totally dominant market position had they just somewhat kept up with technological developments instead of falling behind. Most people have now seen equal lights for much less cost and more are daily discovering the higher-performing ones. If Maglite will stop the silliness of ignoring the times they might yet survive, but otherwise I see them fading away like an old soldier- always proud, noble, respected, and ready but no longer able to do much of anything useful. It will be a sad death and only those of us who love the history of flashlights will truly feel their passing.

Phil

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I used to like my Maglights, about 25 years ago. But count me as a Mag-hater now.

They made great large incandescent lights/clubs last millennium. But they never managed to pull off small lights (all their AA and AAA lights sucked), and they never made a proper transition to LED. Even today, they are years behind the times. While not as expensive as the kinds of lights flashaholics tend to buy, they are too expensive for what you get. That is why they are being replaced by cheaper brands in hardware stores.

Mag used to own the flashlight market. They chose to sit on their designs, and didn’t innovate. They’re paying the price for that. I say, good riddance.

dchomak
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From what I have seen in Home Depot and Lowes, NONE of the big lights sell anymore. The biggest advantage to the LED is not the extra light output, it’s the increased runtime. That means the batteries can be smaller – hence smaller flashlights.
The same amount of light from a much smaller flashlight is what’s driving the market away from Maglites. Maglite has a chance with the Mag mini Pro, 2 -AA cells and 272 Lumen. Very nice light and pocketable.
BTW, 272 “Maglite” lumens equals 800 “Chinese” lumens. Wink

SawMaster
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I can’t see any reason to hate Maglites; indeed they deserve respect and recognition for what they brought us. We’d have nothing better than crappy “XXXfire” quality lights had Maglite not set the bar of build quality for the masses so high. We might not even be where we re now with compact lights had it not been for Maglite leading the way. But they are leaders no more with nothing to really recommend them today save for their ‘bomb-proof’ reputation.

I was exploring a cave with friends when I saw my first Mini Mag in action. It was the full equal of my 2D Eveready plus it focused- I had to have one. Then there was the Solitaire; the first light of that size which was a tool and not just a child’s toy. Again I had to have one and I’ve not been long without a flashlight on my person since. But past leadership is not enough in business today. You have to stay abreast of the latest developments and styles or have something useful to offer which nobody else does or you’ll be closing down sooner than you think. I don’t think the Mini Mag Pro is going to be enough to save Maglite from following other once-revered popular brands into oblivion. Look at Volvo cars, Gateway computers, Kodak cameras and all the others whose only fault was that they weren’t keeping pace with market demands for performance or styling and had nothing usefully different to recommend them over their equally-priced competition. The only market segment where ‘good enough’ will keep the doors open is at the bottom where cheapness is the only virtue you’ve got. Everyone else has to excel at something the market wants or close their doors for lack of sales.

Maglite was an important step in us getting to where we are now and in that they deserve respect, but that doesn’t mean they are a flashlight worth buying at retail prices anymore and save for a few special situations they really have nothing to offer which is worth having. It’s just sad to see what could have been but never was knowing that it didn’t have to be this way.

Phil

HereAgainAgain
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I’m with some of you. God I wish they made LED lights using our favourite LEDs and using liion.

I’d be in like Flynn if they made a C8 style light, or a light similar to any of the ones we here on BLF like and buy.

Can you just picture say, a Convoy L2 or multi LED plunger made by Mag ?? I would literally sell my soul to the devil for one. Even at 3 times the price. I want to breathe a new lease of life in to my 6D, God I wish I had OL’s skills. Crying

samgalax
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I recently received a Maglite Pro Plus.

I only had one maglite until I received the pro plus… I only had an old krypton minimag that I upgraded to xenon and later upgraded to LED using the 140 lumen terralux upgrade.

I love them!!! Despite they are old desing… but… maglite will always be the classic flashlight that every flashaholic should have and… LOVE!!

As I told you guys… I received a pro+ a few days ago.

I am not from US. So I had to pay…. 36 dollars for it. I couldnt resist!! (28 for the flashlight, the rest for shipping cost to EU)

And… guess what. I would buy another maglite.

I did a short video about it… Nothing fancy but…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A5sWn-2dGTo

I love Maglites. Now I want a 2D or 3D with xenon bulb.

Damn! You people from US can get the 2D for 5.60 dollars and combo of AA Pro with AAA led for about 6.50 dollars. Arrgggggg

Lucky people. Wish I live in USA … XP

Please SUBSCRIBE to my youtube channel (flashlights, electronic gadgets and various stuff..)

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCCF3RcoQ3Ff05Cr4-Gg5qAw

I am a beginner. So please help me to make the channel "grow up"

Thanks!!

fran82
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Yeah! Also a maglite pro 272 lumen for 6.5$…

Seen on ebay for +20$…

Enjoy BLF

DB Custom
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Tony Maglica was born in New York City during the depression. His mother took him back to her native Croatia as a small child. He returned to the US in 1950, speaking no English, and worked hard to learn English and save enough money to buy his own lathe. He worked making his own design flashlight in his garage in the LA area. The rest, as they say, is HISTORY. http://maglite.com/about/history

Anyone with enough saavy to turn depression era into success has got my respect. And I have many of his flashlights, including a 2D that works like the day it was new some 30 years ago. Sure, I mod some today, chop em, modernize em, create monsters from em. But I do that to virtually any light made, including my own designs that I too make with my own lathe right here at home.

Way to go Tony! I salute you!

Lateck
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Own many Maglites, just added another yesterday.
The 2 cell AA models have been my go-to lights for years doing A/C repair work. They always worked….
Got into the newer flashlights and yes, they are brighter, smaller and fancyer….
But will alway have Maglites as my back-ups.

Lateck,

SawMaster
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Dale, Tony M. did well- no complaints there. But he’s trying to sell an outdated product. and I fear that marketing strategy will take back the success he worked hard to achieve.

I just got my first LED Maglites from Dchomak’s relentless bargain hunts at H.D. and Lowes. I’d seen and used some before but never owned one. The 2AAA Pro (111 lum) has a nice beam profile and good power for it’s size- I like it. The 2AA Pro (272 lum) is OK, off-centered poorly focusing beam and not much brighter in actual use. It’s gone into my B.O.B. simply for battery compatibility reasons. The 2D is easily outdone by a C8 clone. Good to keep in a car console for use as a club maybe Flat Stare A Maglite still won’t let you down but don’t expect much from it as a flashlight.

What struck me most is the warranty. Excluded is “LED Burnout or LED Module Failure”. I did a WTF? on reading that. No coverage for battery related issues, modding, or abuse (sensible) so essentially as far as breakable parts go the warranty covers the switch and nothing more Shocked I’m sorry but you can get better than that from Chinese Mega-Stores. I remember the old days when a couple guys I know got new lights because of leaky batteries, no questions asked. I’ll always have at least one Maglite- an incan one as they’re EMP-proof Flat Stare

These are dark and sad times for Maglite. I think of what could have been and I almost cry.

Phil

JasonJ
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SawMaster wrote:
What struck me most is the warranty. Excluded is “LED Burnout or LED Module Failure”. I did a WTF? on reading that. No coverage for battery related issues, modding, or abuse (sensible) so essentially as far as breakable parts go the warranty covers the switch and nothing more Shocked I’m sorry but you can get better than that from Chinese Mega-Stores. I remember the old days when a couple guys I know got new lights because of leaky batteries, no questions asked. I’ll always have at least one Maglite- an incan one as they’re EMP-proof Flat Stare

These are dark and sad times for Maglite. I think of what could have been and I almost cry.

Phil

Hmm… I’d think that everything BUT modding and battery leaks would be covered. It isn’t Maglite’s fault we left alka-leaks in our 3D Maglite for 16 years waiting for the Y2k apocalypse. On the other hand, if they are confident in the quality of the LED emitters that they are installing.. and the drivers that they are making (or having made), then those should be included in the warranty. Otherwise, what the hell else is there to cover? Cross threaded tail caps?

WalkIntoTheLight
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JasonJ wrote:
SawMaster wrote:
What struck me most is the warranty. Excluded is “LED Burnout or LED Module Failure”. I did a WTF? on reading that. No coverage for battery related issues, modding, or abuse (sensible) so essentially as far as breakable parts go the warranty covers the switch and nothing more Shocked I’m sorry but you can get better than that from Chinese Mega-Stores. I remember the old days when a couple guys I know got new lights because of leaky batteries, no questions asked. I’ll always have at least one Maglite- an incan one as they’re EMP-proof Flat Stare

These are dark and sad times for Maglite. I think of what could have been and I almost cry.

Phil

Hmm… I’d think that everything BUT modding and battery leaks would be covered. It isn’t Maglite’s fault we left alka-leaks in our 3D Maglite for 16 years waiting for the Y2k apocalypse. On the other hand, if they are confident in the quality of the LED emitters that they are installing.. and the drivers that they are making (or having made), then those should be included in the warranty. Otherwise, what the hell else is there to cover? Cross threaded tail caps?

IMO, it’s pretty clear that M@g gave up on quality, service, and innovation a long time ago. They’re now just trying to make some bucks before they completely drive the company and name into the ground.

chenko
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Well, to be honest, it was a Mini Mag 2AA that started the whole flashlight thing for me! So that makes for a pretty nostalgic and positive bias I have towards them Smile

I also like the way they aesthetically “age” with scuffs that gradually reveal the gbare aluminium underneath the polished surface. They look cool well beaten, can’t say that for me let lights.

I had in my hands a newer “pro” led model once and it was a fine light, I gifted it and it was appreciated.

I also think I can get more for the same money, stuff that has become important to me like NW tint and a clickie switch, bit that’s mostly “because of the internet” and would not complain about Maglite lights as an absolute matter.

SawMaster
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Well maybe- JasonJ posted this pic on another thread:

Only 200 lumens claimed but an up-to-date form factor!

Now if they’d just add a LiIon, a built-in USB charger, and upgrade the driver/LED to match MagLite would have a real winner at the retail stores.

Phil

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Mag’s Mag-Tac rechargeable pretty much checks those boxes, actually. They went with LiFePO4 chemistry so runtime kinda sucks (dumb 2-level mode regime doesn’t help). It’s a bit safer and survives many more charge/discharge cycles than LiCo though so I can see their reasoning.

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