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Best Leatherman?

First, you have to know the voltage of your flashlight.
Although many flashlights that take 18650 also take 2 x CR123 (some are even provided with a sleeve because the C123s are slightly narrower), the torch may not be suitable for the 6 volts of 2 x C123 (I learnt that the hard way, burning out the LED of a torch when I was young and foolish).
18650's are 3.7 volt. CR123 batteries are 3 volt.

Although D cell Maglites make nifty defensive weapons, I believe once you try 18650 you'll never want anything else. They are supposed to have a 10-year charged shelf life. They certainly seldom seem to run down. The illumination from a CREE Q5 or T6 Led (or Chinee knockoff) powered by an 18650 is stupendous.

In the olden days I carried a 2 x AAA Pelican Mitylite everywhere and thought nothing could top it for size/weight/illumination. Now it seems laughable....

I have a couple of old Surefire 6P's tucked away. Once I stopped getting free batteries I just started using AA and AAA powered lights.

I shall grab a pack of those 18650's and let you know how it goes, cheers mate.:)

PS. The D cells at home are to twat potential intruders as much as they are for providing light.
 
I have a couple of old Surefire 6P's tucked away. Once I stopped getting free batteries I just started using AA and AAA powered lights.

I shall grab a pack of those 18650's and let you know how it goes, cheers mate.:)

PS. The D cells at home are to twat potential intruders as much as they are for providing light.

I wanted to upgrade our fleet of 6Ps to LED but Surefire only sell an entire head replacement module for nearly the price of a new torch. I tried out some Chinee inserts that cost 6-10 dollars each. One didn't fit in easily and broke when I used pressure. The others worked OK and the lads were happy, but the units didn't last that many years (in theory a LED should last 10k hours).

The 18650s need a special charger - I got Chinese ones that take all sizes of rechargeable lithium batts. They work fine but I never leave them charging unguarded. Always on my desk while I'm working, just in case. As I mentioned, the charger is seldom needed.

There are all kinds of flashlights for 18650, they really don't need to be big or heavy - focussable beam gives more versatility. A friend bought a 2 x 18650 flashlight. Neither he nor I found any advantage to it in fact it just makes it much bigger and heavier than needs be.

I'll be interested to hear how you find them.
 

sirbhp

LE
Book Reviewer
The best Leatherman is a Gerber...


And don't worry about being Non-Mil, you won't be the first.

The real best leatherman is the gizzit what you sent me ! I am very gratefull for this wee project and will read your remarks in the how to get rust and shite off your blades . :salut::salut:
 
I still have and use the same 4 D cell Maglite and AA cell Mini Maglite that I have had for 30 summat years. Mini Mag has had approximately 6 new lamps, the D cell has had only one other and both oft used serving and since. Both still have my name, no. and reg./pt. scratched on them using, if I recall correctly, the sharp edge of my 'proper' razor guard which still rasps my hoary, old fizzog every morning that I am able to.


Sent from my karzi while losing several pounds
 
I still have and use the same 4 D cell Maglite and AA cell Mini Maglite that I have had for 30 summat years. Mini Mag has had approximately 6 new lamps, the D cell has had only one other and both oft used serving and since.

Back in the day I procured LED "lamps" for our 2 x AA Mini Maglites. They were relatively inexpensive (around $12 IIRR, from a US manufacturer - not a Chinese web site) and included a new reflector, which was necessary to accommodate the slightly different dimensions of the LED insert.
The result was significantly brighter illumination and longer battery life. Had no cases of them "burning out" either (unlike with the Chinese LED modules for our P6s that I tried).
Shortly after that Maglite started producing the LED version of the Mini - all very nice but slightly larger than the original, rendering many of our GALLS belt pouches obsolete.
 
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Back in the day I procured LED "lamps" for our 2 x AA Mini Maglites. They were relatively inexpensive (around $12 IIRR, from a US manufacturer - not a Chinese web site) and included a new reflector, which was necessary to accomodate the slightly different dimensions of the LED insert.
The result was significantly brighter illumination and longer battery life. Had no cases of them "burning out" either (unlike with the Chinese LED modules for our P6s that I tried).
Shortly after that Maglite started producing the LED version of the Mini - all very nice but slightly larger than the original, rendering many of our GALLS belt pouches obsolete.
I upgraded my 2D maglite a few years ago with an LED module after some research as not all were the same quality. Some users had mentioned beam issues. This is easily remedied by adjusting the beam focus. The difference in brightness was phenomenal.
 
Back in the day I procured LED "lamps" for our 2 x AA Mini Maglites. They were relatively inexpensive (around $12 IIRR, from a US manufacturer - not a Chinese web site) and included a new reflector, which was necessary to accommodate the slightly different dimensions of the LED insert.
The result was significantly brighter illumination and longer battery life. Had no cases of them "burning out" either (unlike with the Chinese LED modules for our P6s that I tried).
Shortly after that Maglite started producing the LED version of the Mini - all very nice but slightly larger than the original, rendering many of our GALLS belt pouches obsolete.

I have been looking around re. the 18650 batteries as discussed previously. On the torchy people forums I found very good recommendations for these chaps and their P6 components compatible flashlights.


The McClicky switch upgrade is said to be an improvement too


And, also Malkoff do a drop in module for 6P's which causes torchy people to sneak off to the toilet to bang one out.

 
LEDlenser; loved them initially and still use them daily but the supply of spare parts is a joke. The job bought a ton of them for issue to the mechs and immediately had problems getting spares so everyone eneding up having torch units cobbled together from broken ones to keep torches out in the field.very hard to get replacement lenses.
Had or more correctly have a small Ledlenser key ring torch after a number of years the on off switch broke took it back to the shop. No problem they said we’ll send it back to the distributor and after a couple of weeks got the call to come back and collect a shiny new one
 
Had or more correctly have a small Ledlenser key ring torch after a number of years the on off switch broke took it back to the shop. No problem they said we’ll send it back to the distributor and after a couple of weeks got the call to come back and collect a shiny new one
I have a Ledlenser P3. A cracking little torch. Just dug it out. Instant on. Adjustable beam. Only one cautionary note is that the little button is easy to depress and so needs to be protected from being powered up accidentally.
 
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TamH70

MIA
I have CREE bike lights on my baby Voodoo Bantu that are powered by a bunch of 18650s in caddies, and the light output is phenomenal. I'm not sure how long the beam length is, but to make them anywhere near road-legal I had to buy filters which alter the light pattern and make them slightly less eye-burning.

The battery life is quite long as well, and I have a rig for a head-torch fitting.

My only problem with them is that the head-unit isn't anywhere near waterproof, which since I live up here in Scotland is a bit of a worry. Though I will say that they saved my life a few times on a particularly nasty winter night-ride to Lochwinnoch via the railway path, as they lit up patches of ice which would have wiped me out from dozens of yards away.

On the multi-tool thing, I have only ever owned Gerbers - mine is the needle-nose plier version of the MP600. They're alright but the screwdriver blades are a bit flimsy.
 
I have been looking around re. the 18650 batteries as discussed previously. On the torchy people forums I found very good recommendations for these chaps and their P6 components compatible flashlights.


The McClicky switch upgrade is said to be an improvement too


And, also Malkoff do a drop in module for 6P's which causes torchy people to sneak off to the toilet to bang one out.


Looks nifty. Due to the lockdown here I can't check straight away but if I recall rightly, the tube/body of the Surefire P6 won't take an 18650 due to the 18650's girth.
@Electromagnetic made an important point about the tail cap switch - if they are not properly recessed, they could be inadvertantly pressed. With our Surefire 6Ps it wasn't an issue due to the sturdiness of the actual switch/rubber cover and because we used the Surefire rigid polymer holsters.
With the Ledlenser P7s, it does occur because of the slightly protruding button and the fabric belt holster.
 

tgo

War Hero
Most people with tail cap switches these days just loosen the cap 1/4 turn to break the circuit. Some of the 18650 torches have leds hot enough to set your pocket on fire if you accidentally turn it on.
 
Most people with tail cap switches these days just loosen the cap 1/4 turn to break the circuit. Some of the 18650 torches have leds hot enough to set your pocket on fire if you accidentally turn it on.

I prefer just getting a torch with a properly recessed button.

One thing we have noticed with the Ledlenser P7 is that they sometimes don't work and then you have to slightly unscrew the tail cap in order to achieve a circuit.

A LED torch should be transmitting the heat away from the LED/driver in order to preserve them. I've not encountered anything hot enough to start a fire. Though, the old pre-LED Surefire 6Ps could get hot enough to melt their own lens "glass" (some kind of transparent plastic) if you left them on.
 
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tgo

War Hero
I prefer just getting a torch with a properly recessed button.

One thing we have noticed with the Ledlenser P7 is that they sometimes don't work and then you have slightly unscrew the tail cap in order to achieve a circuit.

A LED torch should be transmitting the heat away from the LED/driver in order to preserve them. I've not encountered anything hot enough to start a fire. Though, the old pre-LED Surefire 6Ps could get hot enough to melt their own lens "glass" (some kind of transparent plastic" if you left them on.

Some of the crazy torches out there now will run in 'turbo' mode briefly before they step down at 1-2k lumens, they will set cloth on fire.
 
Some of my recessed tail button ones.
The one at the end with cord attached is a wonderfully compact single rechargeable C123 with focussable beam, but although the button is recessed it is electronic rather than manual clicky, so a big risk of it being set off by inadvertently getting touched.
WhatsApp Image 2020-09-21 at 12.54.55 (1).jpeg
WhatsApp Image 2020-09-21 at 12.54.55.jpeg
 
I wanted to upgrade our fleet of 6Ps to LED but Surefire only sell an entire head replacement module for nearly the price of a new torch. I tried out some Chinee inserts that cost 6-10 dollars each. One didn't fit in easily and broke when I used pressure. The others worked OK and the lads were happy, but the units didn't last that many years (in theory a LED should last 10k hours).

The 18650s need a special charger - I got Chinese ones that take all sizes of rechargeable lithium batts. They work fine but I never leave them charging unguarded. Always on my desk while I'm working, just in case. As I mentioned, the charger is seldom needed.

There are all kinds of flashlights for 18650, they really don't need to be big or heavy - focussable beam gives more versatility. A friend bought a 2 x 18650 flashlight. Neither he nor I found any advantage to it in fact it just makes it much bigger and heavier than needs be.

I'll be interested to hear how you find them.

Company in the US makes a rechargeable battery stick. Don't have to arse about with a handful of the things trying to get them in, just dump the old stick in your ruck or a pocket and stick the new one in the torch.

 

tgo

War Hero
I used to be an AA only guy, same reasons as most, get batteries anywhere etc.

I've converted now to 18650 now though because the battery lasts many times longer, output is many many times better, and it's really not hard (once you've got a charger and a few spare batteries to keep it going with really no effort, you can even get huge power banks that can recharge your batteries in the field that fit in your pocket. See pic for size. Capacity 25,000 mAh and that readout 100% It was charged up in March. Li-Ion batteries don't ever seem to lose hardly anything in storage.
IMG_20200921_113004.jpg
 

HE117

LE
There are many Leathermans, but this is mine..

leatherman.jpg


Original Mil Spec with det crimps..

Still going strong...!
 
I had a Gerber and I swapped it for a Leatherman Crunch, through this very forum in fact.

I can seriously recommend the Leatherman Crunch.

I also have a cheapie £5 Lidl folding multi tool with is often handy but I haven't really stressed it very much.
I got the Lidl one too, it's in my patrol bag, it hasn't let me down yet and it's been used extensively. ;)
IMG_20200921_133609.jpg
 

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