A few weeks ago we relayed some staff pics for budget everyday carry (EDC) knives, an essential piece of kit for concealed carry and overall daily life. We’ll most likely revisit the blade topic again with suggestions for automatic/assisted openers, a $100 budget and fixed blade suggestions. But for today, I polled the staff for their top suggestions for EDC Flashlights. There are no price limitations or caveats – I just wanted to know what they carried around on a daily basis. Let’s take a look.
Do EVERYTHING Better In The Dark: TFB’s Top EDC Flashlights
Sex. I was referring to sex in the dark. With a flashlight. I’m not going to dive into a full-blown scientific explanation of candela, lumens and luminous intensity: besides being unqualified to do so, the last time we attempted to drop some knowledge bombs it, well, bombed. When it comes to EDC Flashlights, besides brightness and beam concentration, there are a few practical considerations to take into account:
- Size/weight: Obviously the smaller and lighter the better, but it still needs to be bright enough to be useful.
- Battery type: Many will pick the battery hill to die on but my suggestion is just to carry one or two spares in a battery carrier in your satchel and call it a day. You’re not being dropped into the Alaskan wilderness naked and alone.
- Durability: This is a tougher characteristic to test and mostly has to do with brand reputation. But I do have dreams of building some sort of vibrating pants pocket testing platform to simulate accelerated daily carry. My one (real) suggestion is to pick a light with an LED head and not an incandescent bulb.
- Variable output: A truly useful EDC flashlight will have at least a low and a high output. If you drop a mozzarella stick between the seats of your 1991 Ford Probe, you’ll want something that won’t blind you until the next traffic light.
SureFire – Tactician Dual-Output MaxVision Beam LED Flashlight E2T-MV Plus 6 extra SureFire CR123 batteries and 2 Lightjunction battery boxes
This groundbreaking light is designed for maximum versatility, serving as both an everyday carry light and an improvised weapon light. The Tactician’s dual-output LED is paired with a proprietary reflector to create our MaxVision™ Beam, a useful wall of light that fills in the space around you. Hand-tighten its front bezel to set the light to deliver all 800 lumens for longer-range or tactical tasks; rotate counterclockwise a quarter-turn for 5 lumens of light for those tasks requiring less light and more runtime. Either setting is activated in momentary-on mode with a press of the tailcap; twist for constant-on mode.
A lightweight but durable aerospace-aluminum body is knurled for a secure grip, and a Mil-Spec hard anodized finish protects against abrasion and corrosion. Because you’re going to want to take this portable powerhouse with you just about everywhere you go, it features a robust pocket clip for secure bezel-up carry in a pocket, pack, or purse.
Highly versatile light serves as an everyday carry light or a highly versatile light serves as a fighting light and a task light.
Dual-output LED with MaxVision™ Beam, delivers a broad useful wall of light that fills in the space around you. Hand-tighten its front bezel for maximum output; loosen by a quarter-turn for low-output. Either setting is activated in momentary-on mode with a press of the tailcap; twist for constant-on mode
Streamlight 88061 ProTac 1L-1AA Tactical Light
The ProTac 1L-1AA is the newest addition to the ProTac Series and a perfect everyday carry light. This dual fuel ultra-compact flashlight accepts a single lithium or alkaline battery, providing ultimate flexibility in the field. This high lumen tactical light features the latest in shock-proof power LED technology and three different user selectable programs. The combination of size, output, and battery versatility result in one of the brightest and versatile everyday carry lights.
4.25-Inch Length; .95-Inch Head diameter; .85-Inch Barrel diameter.
Weighs 2.5-ounces with CR123 battery; 2.8-ounces with AA alkaline battery; 2.4-ounces with AA Lithium battery.
Option: Streamlight ProTac 90
Multi-Output Rechargeable Pocket LED Flashlight
The Stiletto’s slim design allows it to be drawn and activated from a pocket as fast as a knife. It is a rechargeable, high-output handheld flashlight – ideal for anyone’s everyday carry kit. The primary switch on the body activates a wide 650-lumen, medium 250-lumen or dialed-down 5-lumen beam for tasks using a MaxVision Beam reflector.
- Super Bright : Three Cree LEDs with neutral white light emit 2800 lumens of extremely bright light over two football fields and long up to 200 m. Operated by a rechargeable 18650 battery. Please note, the FW3A needed unprotected cells.
- ADJUSTABLE: With 5 UIs or stepless brightness adjustment, a very versatile adjustable operation is available that meets all requirements. Smooth Ramping, Stepped Ramping, Momentary Mode, Muggle Mode, Electronic Lock Out. The Standard UI (Smooth) allows continuous dimming from FLOOR (lowest level) to CEILING (highest level). In addition, you still have access to 100% Turbo. With Lockout the lamp can be safely carried in one hand or trouser pocket
- COMPACT & PRACTICAL: Made of military aluminum alloy with anodised surface, steel and IPX8, sealable, fall arrest and waterproof. The surface is designed so that this flashlight does not slip out of your hand. Place the flashlight vertically to illuminate an entire room. The FW3A is ideal for various outdoor activities such as hiking, climbing, hunting, camping, running, fishing, explorations or even the gas round.
- EASY TO OPERATE: FW3A flashlight is operated via the end button. The lamp is set so that by pressing and holding the button it is possible to ramp up to 50% power. With a double click, you get 100 percent performance.
- GREAT OPTICS: Aluminum with transparent anodization. So we can combine the great look of a fine finish directly from the lathe with the good features and the added protection of an anodization. In addition, both demountable pocket clip and buttons are made of stainless steel. She looks very chic and high quality. A good gift for teens, adults in birthday, Christmas.
- POWERFUL & BRIGHT – E2D Defender Tactical utilizes virtually indestructible high-performance LED. It offers an intense 1,000-lumen beam on High and a 5-lumen beam on low, precisely focused through the optimized Total Internal Reflection (TIR) lens. This amount of output may allow you to momentarily disorient virtually any adversary and gain a crucial tactical advantage.
- TACTICAL – The E2D Defender Tactical’s design provides enhanced self-defense capabilities.
- DURABLE & TOUGH – The E2DLU-A has a tough aluminum body with ergonomic design corrosion resistance and durability. Its body features a Type III Mil-Spec hard-anodized coating for abrasion and corrosion resistance in foul weather or other adverse environments.
- EVERYDAY CARRY – This tactical flashlight is a great companion anytime and anywhere. Its slim and lightweight simplicity makes it easy to carry it at all times. It also has a dual function stainless steel clip for bezel up or down pocket storage.
- DUAL OUTPUT – Clicking its tail cap twice yields a battery-saving 5 lumens, ideal for the most basic low-light tasks and with a continuous low-output run time of 63 hours, you can trust the Ultra to keep you company from sunset to sunrise. BUNDLE – 4 EXTRA CR123A Batteries (Package comes with 2 Batteries – 6 Batteries Total) and a LightJunction Battery Case are included.
- BRIGHT LIGHT OUTPUT – 107 Lumens of visible light up to 26 meters . 172 Candela intensity
- ENERGY EFFICIENT – 4 hours 20 minute run time. Powered by 2 AAA Batteries, which is included
- ERGONOMIC DESIGN – Improved anodized grip for handling with improved pocket clip retention. Wider ergonomic on/off button switch
- SMALL and VERSATILE – IPX-4 rated, splash resistance for at least 5 minutes. 2 meter drop tested. Cree XP-G3 LED. Keep one in every pocket. Available in 4 color options
- WHY 5.11 – Tactical gear that is built for your environment. 5.11 creates products for professionals and consumers that embody our mission to create trusted gear for the most demanding missions
From the tail caps to the high-quality lens and reflector, every part of the TW-950 defines high-quality functionality. Engineered with powerful functionality in mind, this two-cell (CR123A) light produces a blinding 900 lumens on high mode, with practical and innovative features for everyday field use. Choose the light mode and lock it in even with the light off with the selector dial. Memory recalls the last setting, so you won’t have to cycle through settings unnecessarily. With high, low or strobe (I, II, III) settings, this light’s momentary-on or click-on button delivers the powerful beam to your target. Choose between three interchangeable tail caps, allowing you to outfit the light specifically to your need.
The flared tail gives you ultimate handling capability when you’ll be using your light for searching or in-hand operation. The straight and long tail cap is flush with the power button so you can set your light upright on a table or other flat surface as well as prevent accidental activation while pocket carrying. The straight and short tail cap works great for a rifle-mount light. The flashlight fits through most rifle mounts (with the pocket clip removed) with the button exposed for easy operation with or without gloves. Rising from its mounting point, the removable pocket clip nestles the light deeper into your pocket and out of the way than similar flashlight clips. Remove the clip and reattach it in the opposite direction to attach it tightly to the brim of a baseball cap. Light the night with the TacWare TW series tactical lights.
Warning: TFB writer Ezekiel also conceal carries a black powder muzzleloader pistol.
- Wire-guarded glass globe
- Over 48 hours of continuous illumination
- Reflector to evenly distribute light
- Adjustable light output
- Uses two D batteries (not included)
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