AA / C / D Alkaline??

I’m looking for a decent output light (older XM-L or better if possible), using alkaline batts. I’d like it to be approximately the size of a 3 cell maglight (maybe a 4 cell). I’d like it to be cheap, and do not mind some DIY. I want to produce about 20-40 of them for a specific police dept (they get all the free ‘alkaline’ batteries they want, they run out and BAM free overnight crate of fresh batts). They are using absolute garbage right now (barely better than the old mag lights, multi LED craplights and the sort). They can’t pay (are unwilling to pay :), for a higher end light and absolutely want to do the alkaline thing (Nope, no free Lithiums, no free Ni-MH rechargeables, just alkaline garbage and lots of it and they really want to use it so they can ‘save money’ lol).

So I’m not opposed to doing a limited amount mod work (something that you don’t screw up if the mod dosen’t go ‘just right’). But it’s gotta be cheap, no giant aluminium pills into mags and the like, just something that uses perhaps 3-4 C or D batteries (what I’ve seen here is over 30 bucks and not all that great for output, I think they want to spend 30 bucks for their lights, maybe 40). It can even run on say a dozen AA alkaline batts, (again, what’s I’ve seen is expensive and dosne’t use this many). Coast had a 9 AA light that might serve them well but it’s not readily available that I’ve seen. 18650 is deff they way to go but they are set on their alkalines (the fools : )

Discontinued Home Depot Defiant lights seem to be popular
I have never seen one in real life so someone else will have to chime in

If you can find them, they’re well worth ~$25. On clearance a lot of people got them for $2-10. They’re a steal for that price.

Do you (NewDrive5) have a stash of 3D Maglites they were using before? They can be upgraded from incandescent to ~300 lumens of flood at 50yd throw for$2 and 30min of DIY.

Defiant ArmorMax 3D / 3C lights at homedepot are decent, though a bit overpriced at $30.

$2 and 30min?? :nerd_face: wow I missed that discussion. Any chance you have link please ??

If you have to use alkaline cells, what about just using 3D LED Maglites? They are pretty low output compared to Li-ion lights available for the same price, but they are cheap, throw ok and will run for hours on alkalines…

The best I’ve found on here seems to be the trustfire TR-J12, think someone said it did pretty nice on 4 C batts. The discontinued home depot / Costco lights, I’ve never seen em in real life (out of stock everywhere, in store only deals, etc). I’ve seen some ‘500 lumen’ duracel 2 D battery lights (think they were 2 * D), 2 units per pack at $20 per pack (they did have XM-L2 in them). They were all plastic but that’s probably where I’ll send these guys. They kind of also wanted (for that price, told em probably not), for aluminium lights with something tailored to them printed on it (“Police Light”, or “Police and Fire/Rescue Only”, something like that; told em you need to buy a bunch at once and maybe not for that price).

Have you looked in AutoZone? They carry Police brand lights. They might like the name.


They used to have a 3D Duramax model but went on clearance last September. They usually have aluminum D-cell flashlights. The last time I was there they had new models not on their website so you might want to stop in yourself, they're usually by the registers.


Thanks, I will do so, if I seen decent stuff there I’ll point em over to it :slight_smile:

I had the same thought, police brand would be funny, though if all are like those 1AA waste of material then the humour is not worth the headache

Yeah for sure, I certainly do not want to recommend real thrash for them. I don’t want them to buy a bunch of garbage and I don’t want to be ‘that guy who told us these pieces of trash were good’ lol.

Well, they're not world class, but we're limited by the parameters of the request, alkaline D-cells, and price. They might be tweaked into something respectable, though.

Well, I dunno if they’ll go for it but I’m going to order a couple of TR-J12 lights, these can run off of 4 C cells from what I understand. Perhaps it’ll do ok (I can only imagine what this dose to the life of the C cells but wth, 5 XM-L running nice, low and efficient). I’ll probably want to remove (reprogram I suppose, when that stuff comes in and I learn how to : ), the flashy and strobe stuff, make it just a simple High / Med (say 30% and 100%/DD or something like that). I’ve seen discharge curves for D cells on 1 amp, they do ok, but C cells are a bit less than half the power and I’ve seen the discharge curves of D cells on 3 amps and it’s like 1.6 watt/hours (from a friggin D cell).
(sorry in advance to link the craptastic site, but some good members there do some good tests and post some useful thing sometimes : )

So with C cells I imagine it’s not gonna be pretty, but like I said, they get as many freebies as they want (if this light performs well under it’s circumstances, and just absolutely kills the hell out of the batteries, then maybe they’ll end up loosing that deal; this could be a good thing actually, make them learn to use some damn Li-ion and it’s many nice features (energy density, high rate of discharge capability while not being reduced to less than 2 watt/hours lol, higher nominal voltage, nice low self discharge (well that’s the one thing they already have with alkaline), nice and very light weight (compared to C and esp D cells), and last but not least, the potential to become quite entertaining if things go horribly wrong : ), and they’ll have some lights they can use already ready.