Hunting flashlights in a budget with certain specifications ?

Hi there I need help and recommendations for good hunting lights in certain budget.

First of all I want to give a close representation of light that I’m searching about, some good light to be comparison will be Maxtoch Sniper M24 :

Problem with this light is that regular price for it was for long time 80$ and then from some reason it go to 130$, I find out what is reason but that is not important, only important is that this light is 130$ now.

So what I’m searching for is :

1. Light that weight without cells are about 400g max
2. Big reflector, big throw
3. Light that can be mounted on rifle ( optics or rifle barrel ), so no big host 1x 18650 or 2x 18650 in series or 1x 21700
4. Light that can endure a recoil from rifle ( that will not turn off or change modes after recoil ), good quality double springs for example
5. Light that can run in high or turbo ( whatever it is the strongest mode ) minimum 1 min before it goes step down with light beam power
6. Light that have option of using a pressure switch on it ( it is not mandatory but it will be good if it have that option )
7. Light that have main ON/OFF tail switch ( side switch to turn ON light is really hard to hit when it is on rifle )
8. Option that only flashlight can be purchased, don’t need cells and charger, additional things like filters, pressure switch, holster etc will not be problem
9. Price need to be as lower as it can be, but max price is 80$ what was a Sniper M24 price for long time

I know about Ballista 3.0 :
Price is 120$ but with charger and cells, I contact seller to ask do they sell light without cells and charger but no response for over 5 days so they obviously not sell it separately.

So that is that roughly, a Sniper M24 is just about what it need to be, of course a light with little lower specification is also acceptable, but for example what I’m not searching for it is Nitecore P30 model, I also have it and it have 800 lumens in 50mm head which is not enought for what I’m searching about.

Be free to post your thoughts and recommendations. Thanks.

I am building my second rifle light series after my first very successful series done about two years ago.

The NEW rifle light is based on a C8 (Convoy host) with the CULPM1.TG emitter, on a ramping driver that can be set to 100% mode for rifle use. No thermal drop so if you cook the emitter using the rifle light as search light (Vs. getting the job done within a few minutes) this isn’t the light for you. But if you want the most throw you can get from a C8, then this IS it (today) and this might work for you.

Pressure switches have 20g wire (at best) and 1/2 your current is lost in the travel to and from the switch. The solution: a FET circuit that uses the pressure switch line wires JUST for “signaling” on/off to the FET (which switches the actual current AT THE TAIL). Result: Zero current loss. I use the light’s normal clicky switch tail cap, and retrofit this FET (which takes up about the same room as a standard clicky switch).

I’ve been at this years. I HAVE build direct driven (no driver) C8F hosts from Sofirn with XLP- HI emitters which need no voltage conversion (driver) using a VERY HIGH current 18650 (25R, Molicel, etc.). Good high drain 18650 runs this light up to over 4k lumens (my estimate) for a few minutes. But no protection: no low voltage, no reverse polarity, etc. You are switching directly between the battery and the LEDs. This design is best used for pig hunts where we find them with IR/night vision, then when in position we “hit the lights” and it’s over in 30 seconds (*where we go back to headlamps and hand held lights). The C8F gives about 250 yards of WIDE, BRIGHT light.

But if you want a light you can use on a 600+ yard hunt (like coyote hunting with my 260AI over bean fields here in Kansas), my new C8 WILL do it if you use it as intended- for the kill shot, not for searching. I have handheld lights and headlamps for that work. When the target is aquired and open— that’s when the rifle light goes ON and shortly thereafter- BANG! (lights out) :stuck_out_tongue:

I’ve never found a light for a rifle that goes more than 30 seconds to a minute without throttling down until Simon at Convoy (and Funtastic in New Zealand- who also sells LONG range rifle lights) showed me this new emitter/driver combo. But you have to buy some specialty parts, know how to install the FET, modify the host in some places (yes… thick springs on both ends!), and that’s what I am working on next month (when I get it all from several sources).

If you want a list of parts/sources, lemme’ know. If you want help building the light yourself, happy to help. I can also prefab some stuff for you (FET tailswitch) OR sell you a finished light. There ARE ALSO some decent lights (like the Sofirn C8G/XHP35) that have a driver with memory for HIGH (which is VERY close to Turbo on that light and it’s a throw monster for it’s C8 size). JUST a FET tail switch would run that light being careful to stay in the same mode (not so easy sometimes, but I’ve learned to do it). But you’d only have about 30 seconds before throttling kicks in on that (or any) light out there with thermal limiting (most of them).

But then again, IF you ONLY need those 30 seconds (I RARELY use more on any hunt), then something like the C8G kicks arse with just a FET modified tail cap with a pressure/remote switch. You’d probably get out to 400+ yards (or better with good glass on top of the rifle) with that light. You can buy that FET circuit board directly from Lexel here at BLF and if you’re good with modding- build it yourself for the cost of a C8G. pressure/remote switch, FET cicuit, some shipping and your time. It will kick the snot out of most of the offers out there today!

BUT… this newer CULPM1.TG emitter is a game changer and with a good Convoy C8+ host (which fits in most 1” scope rings BTW!), and plenty of juice— THIS light is going to very likely be the preferred long-range hunting light config here soon. It can handle the heat in smaller hosts like the C8 without “melting” while giving a good few minutes of full turbo (*always with the FET tail switch which is the other game changer here).

What are you wanting to hunt AND AT WHAT MAX RANGE???

MAXTOCH is here… You will always find an ideal hunting light in MAXTOCH, because we spent a looooong time in studying needs of hunters. :smiley:

You may try Archer M1—–138g only and 1100 meters beam range. Its on/off is controlled by tail switch and the side switch is for ramping mode, thus it is almost a single mode torch after you selecting an output level. Remote pressure switch is available as well if necessary.

What’s more important is Archer M1 is usd86.00 only…

Let me know if there’s anything more I could assist please. :blush:

@Zappaman, the main thing is that I want a light with bigger reflector, in case that I will build my own light it will be a light with bigger reflector than C8 host.
Problem is that there is no available good host for hunting with big reflector to buy, or at least I didn’t found it.
Second thing is that I don’t understand you at part about pressure switch, from what I have seen, all that big current driven lights have no PS, since no one can handle too much current, for example Sofirn C8T model have about 1300 lumens and when you out an original Sofirn PS for that light you cant get mode than about 950 max…

And there is much more reasons why I don’t like to build light, for start I will be happy to find a good host for hunting that I can start to thinking in that direction, but as far as I can see that will not happen.

@Amanda, problem is that Archer M1 is also overpriced, simply a Sniper M24 old price was cheaper than Archer M1… As far as I can see there is no upgrade on lights at all and prices are much more higher… so it will not be in my consideration list as far as prices go that high.

An Acebeam L18 is on its way to me… Of course that light don’t have all what I want but right now I don’t see some much better options.

Glad you found what will work for ya’ :smiley:

Don’t know I will see when it arrives, in the meantime I’m still searching and willing to hear any proposal that can be up to my needs, and also I’m ready to buy immediately if I see it is what I need.

With a standard remote switch- MUCH current is lost to the thin wire making the round trip back to the the pressure pad (switch) and back— usually on VERY THIN wire.

With a FET tail switch, current is switched AT THE TAIL (current never leaves the light- just like with a normal tail clicky switch). ONLY a VERY slight signal voltage is required to turn it off and on (* and I typically just use the same remote switch and it’s wires anyway)— but in this case… the wires only act as a “signal voltage” line— so the wires can be as thin as you wish. The tail FET switch uses a watch battery to power itself and it all fits nicely in place of most 17mm - 22mm clicky switches.

Bottom line: if your light can do 3500 lumens with standard tail switch and you replace it with this FET remote switch- you get the SAME 3500 lumens!

AND SO… maybe you don’t NEED a large diameter reflector since you lose NO power with this set-up :stuck_out_tongue:

By about February, I should have two beta models (build on a Convoy C8+ host), with the new Osram led, and a ramping driver (that runs the LED to it’s top output- while also delivering more throw than anything I know of *on a C8). The driver also had 100% (ON/OFF mode) to work properly with the remote switch— AND no thermal throttling!!!

So the real test is how it holds up after about 2 minutes of turbo— early tests from some others think it will work on the C8+. I will prove it works (or not) :stuck_out_tongue:

Noctigon K1 with W2

That K1 above is a good suggestion for the OP’s request. :+1:

The light I’m building uses the same emitter and the driver I am using is pushing it right to 8A (where this emitter’s peak efficiency curve tops out). But I wanted SHORT run time, high output ability for the way I (and a lot of guys I hunt with) hunt. I also want a light I can EASILY mount to a rifle or AR15 using standard 1” scope rings.

The C8+ (Convoy host) has a 25.2mm diameter body so very convenient for mounting in standard 1” scope rings (which can mount on top of some specialty scope rings with the same picatinny rails cast on top of those ring’s top pieces- so I’m stacking the light on top of the scope with traditional rifles). With an AR15 I can also use the same scope mounts to hang lights EASY (about anywhere in the forward rail)— the light just needs to fit into the 1” rings and clear the scope physically. That is where a smaller reflector comes in handy :wink:

I also have some S21B and S2+ versions I’m working on specifically for shorter range AR15 use (I’ll shim to fit 1” or 30mm scope rings just like the C8). The particular AR15 is in the 6.8 SPC caliber (* and loved for pig hunting out to about 250 yards). So hoping this S2 SST40 version has the “stuff” to get out to maybe 150 yards (given a driver that will run it up to full output using the SST40 led is being used- TBD). But the S21B lights have the same Osram emitter and will also be tested. THESE lights will have LIMITED output time use- no thermal management in that driver- but will throw well for their size. That light WILL GET HOT FAST!

I’m going smaller host/super emitter/highest output here to avoid problems with too wide a reflector. So it’s a trade off for a tighter package in exchange for shorter use times. So these lights still gets out there great throw wise— but are much easier to carry/use in the field.

So obviously… my hunting lights are not meant to be used as “search lights”, but for acquiring a pig or coyote AFTER finding them with night vision and getting set-up for a shot that usually takes a few seconds: light on, acquire the animal, aim…fire. If a second target comes into view (often with pig hunts), you still have plenty of time to take several more shots— all within 30 seconds, then… it’s all over.

I use NV device and rarely use rifle-mounted light because the moment I turn on the flashlight they’re gone like the wind! And we have different approach to hunting compared to you guys in the states. But when I do use it I find my regular C8+ enough fo up to 120 meters. So I can only imagine how great it is to use something described above. I’ll keep an eye out for your posts with that hotroded C8 one.

According to Funtastic (who is a dealer in NZ specializing on long-range hunting lights)… he states:

“Nice neutral white tint, 1300 lumens at 965m” with this same C8+ config

So Funtastic (and Simon at Convoy) have already put this light idea together. I have not yet asked Funtastic about actual use in the field though. TBD.

But I am really hopeful the S21b (with this same Osram emitter) will work for lesser range use on both traditional rifles and AR15s. But in “lesser range” I’m talking at least 300-400 yards :wink:

Time will tell…

Hey Zap like the sound of this new hunting light you are building could you make an extra one for me? If so how much.


My demo of the Convoy C8+ with CULPM1 led. Looks better in person

You could of purchased the Convoy C8+ using the Osram CULPM1, Ramping driver. This gave me 1002 meters but I reduce rating by 50 meters in case it’s reading too high. I also get 1300 lumens using a Samsung 30Q. This would of saved you money

Hey Rat…

After I finish the two beta hosts and test them some in the field, I’ll have a better idea of the final “product” :smiley: I would be happy to put you on the list after proving (I hope) the concept.

But as you can see here… Funtastic already has it (and it’s looking solid so far!!!), so you may contact him if you want something faster. I think he’s getting into the FET switching also, but that is also something I can do after one has the host. *note: Convoy is going through a thread change on many existing light models and so we have to be careful with tail switches matching the host too.

I’m going for using off-the-shelf scope mount rings (using shims for fit) for mounting these lights and so I’d need to know if a buyer wants the light with or without rigs (and the height of the rings). I’m guessing many will want to DYI on mounting. While mounting to an AR15 is easier, the traditional rifle needs the light mounted to the scope itself; either using mounts that attach to the scope body (BETWEEN the scope rings holding the scope) OR using the specialty scope rings (with the rail tops built into the top caps- stacking the light above the scope itself- which I prefer). I really like TWO mount points and one easily runs out of room for the mounts that attach between the scope rings holding the scope- few scopes have enough room.

I don’t even have the hosts in yet and so it wouldn’t be prudent to quote anything yet :wink: But it’s basically the host, spare tail switch, FET circuit, pressure switch and my time to build/test. I have a few “pro staffers” who will also “test” these betas for me (so I won’t get them back). But given they like them I’m hoping for orders this March or so and then I hope to have everything specified and the idea “locked down” (* with more hosts ordered by then).

I plan to get it firmed up by mid-Feb and build more in March. Kansas just changed it’s laws to allow lights for Coyote hunting and so I’m planning to sell a few locally for this spring to hunters too. But by then… I’ll know more and can maybe sell some out of the US.

I also have a beta Convoy S21b using this emitter (also without thermal limiting) that may or may not MELT and that too will be tested here hopefully next month!

I don’t ship out of New Zealand. I’d find it difficult to sort out warranties when postage to and from Aus cost a wee bit. I don’t make a lot on each product so it could be a risk.

Many warranty claims are for silly things, the last guy swore it was a faulty torch upon receiving, turns out he didn’t realize the tail cap had to be screwed on all the way lol. Another was just dirty threads causing a poor connection, gave instructions on how to clean but the customer just wanted me to do it. I then have to cover the return shipping cost back to the customer.

I received my sample from NiteSun, but not sure I like the beam focusing into a small square. The Osram CULPM1 has a range of over 1300m in the HT12 though. I think some spill is more useful

Hey Funtastic…

The nitesun is an unknown brand to me… but that HT12 looks “interesting”.

I am sorry I assumed NZ to Australia would be an “easy” thing to do… just trying to help out! But as a dealer I understand your need to keep things manageable… and I’m sure that means margins need to be thin to compete while trying to meet the market you serve.

That said… I also plan to serve the US Midwest market here in the USA. But if given time… I’d like to help out any BLF’er with the understanding that in some cases I can only deliver what is “doable” while also trying to keep pricing competetive but customer satisfaction also GOOD. And I KNOW that is often a hard trick :smiley:

So Rat… I am HAPPY to give ANY info to you you might use OR to later sell a light I’ve tested and can be assured you will BE HAPPY with! I feel that is exactly Funtastic’s concern here too.

This is a cutting edge light in some ways and I think both Funtastic (and myself) would just like to NOT get in a position where you were not happy. That said… I am willing to keep the channel open here as I work on what I hope will be a light I’m proud to sell.

Perhaps Funtastic might wish to abstain for now, but I have to respect his wishes. AND… I’ll remind everyone here this is HIS idea he has been ALL to kind to share with me. So for now let’s stay in touch and when I have something I’ll share it with Funtastic (and you, Rat) for sure… and I’d hope we can help Rat (and other BLF’ers) here as we go into 2021!

Cheers All!

ps. great review in this C8+ Funtanstic!!!

how much current are feeding that c8??

Using a fet driver and the Samsung 30Q I get 7.4A which is perfectly fine using that led.

I use dual springs too.

@zappaman - I use button top 30Q’s so the positive spring doesn’t dent the flat top. I’ve been thinking about using rubber hose to stop the battery smashing into the springs. You’d use a large enough diameter to sit over the spring or screw down over it

I have a own host with the same reflector of olight javelot but very much better heat sink, i feel i can got better narrow beam using that led than one hpl hi.

The fet drivers are home made or i can got in some stores in china in bulk?

Because I use berylium springs to have a perfect current transference holding the elasticity of a standar spring of steel. And theys let to pass the same current than to use a direct wire to the battery, because i tested with direct drive the xpl hi and never pass of 3.9-4.3 ah at the tail (yet using 26650 cells) ¿that feet drivers manage the current in other way to let pass more current at the leds, or is only a subject of unprotected and high discharge cells?.
I use board with 10x7135 and i am so far away of that currents, 3.5-4ah is the current on tail ( i understand the limits of current of 10x7135 driver), but with direct drive never got more than that too. ¿I am lossing something about that feet drivers? Javelot give 5ah in turbo mode, but use 2 cells driver, my model is single cell for a design decition. But that c8 pushing 7ah at one more smaller led than xpl hi, leave me perplex.