All posts in Streamlight Flashlights

If you are looking for a flashlight for your handgun, you’re safe with Safariland Holsters and Streamlight Flashlights

















It’s a re-occurring issue every week, several times a week.  Someone walks into our store with a gun they just got and want to put a light on it.   That’s the easy part, the hard part is finding a holster for it.   If you are looking for something other than the Streamlight Flashlights or Surefire Flashlights your holster options are going to dwindle.   The Streamlight TLR-1 is brighter than ever but if you have a preference in activating the toggle, the Surefire X300U is another option but it will cost you more.  There are plenty of other flashlights you can use, Olight Flashlights, Inforce Flashlights, but you will not find many holster options.

If you are looking for a laser light combination, it’s Streamlight TLR-2 or Surefire X400U and it’s the same old story.    Some nylon companies have options but not that many.   Blackhawk made a major market mistake years ago by only catering to Ziphos flashlights which nobody used, and finally got around to making holsters that took the Streamlight Flashlights and Surefire Flashlights.  Check out Safariland Holsters, holster fit guide before you buy a gun, because they really are the place to go to find out what your options are.


Streamlight TLR-1S Flashlights still going strong and still improving

Some Streamlight flashlights are probable never going to go away and one of them is the Streamlight TLR-1 series.   There are a few variations of this light they might fade out because the standard model has become so versatile and improved output, that it can be used on either a rifle, handgun or shotgun.    I recently tested out the Streamlight TLR-1S (which has the strobe) and tested it in total darkness on a camping trip on my LWRCI Rifle.   The beam on this was excellent out to 100yds I was shocked at how at 300 Lumen output it had better throw than my Streamlight Protac HL USB that had an 850 Lumen output.

There seems to be the most competition between the Streamlight TLR-1S and the Surefire X300, I find them to be different in price, and the feel of the toggles are different.   One has a 300 Lumen output for a little over $100 and the other has a 500 Lumen output for under $200.   Nothing wrong with Surefire, but you are paying for the name.   I do highly suggest the strobe feature for handgun and rifle flashlights because it does come in useful in some defensive situations, it’s also another tool you can use to avoid having to pull the trigger on someone.


Lots of New Streamlight TLR Flashlights this year

Streamlight TLR FlashlightsStreamlight TLR-6 Streamlight Glock 43 FlashlightI don’t know where the ceiling is with flashlight brightness, maybe when it has enough to call it a lightsaber.  There has been much debate from Law Enforcement about what is optimum for doing entries and how much is too much.  The majority that I have spoken to believe that around 200 Lumens is optimum for indoors while outdoors it’s a completely different mindset.   The most important thing you need to know about when considering a flashlight like this is, you are far more likely to be able to identify a threat with a Streamlight TLR-1 Flashlight or the new compact model Streamlight TLR-6 laser light combo.

Flashlights have gotten cheaper to make, with longer run times and double or triple the Lumens compared to 10years ago.  Streamlight TLR Flashlights are a “staple” in this industry are they on just about every Handgun or Carbine.   They have become extremely popular as a Carbine “white light” due to there being an industry move away from pressure switches and people realizing that the lever activation switch is far more reliable.  The New Streamlight TLR-1 HL has an output of 800 Lumens which is quite incredible.  Everyone should have a light on a Carbine but there is such a thing as too much output.


Blackhawk Epoch Level 3 holster that holds Streamlight TLR-1, TLR-2 and Surefire X300

Blackhawk Epoch Level 3 Holster



















Blackhawk Serpa Surefire X300 HolsterBlackhawk Serpa Streamlight TLR-1 HolsterI really don’t know what the whole story was with this holster but it was a long time coming.  We knew it was in the works over 4yrs ago and has only been out for less than 2yrs.   At first glimpse this is a huge holster, definitely not a CCW holster but an excellent LEVEL 3 holster.  If you don’t need LEVEL 3 then don’t buy it, but if you want a secure holster that holds a Surefire X300U then all the sales data we have on these gives us a reason to stock them.  Blackhawk seems to be slow at making holsters for Sig Sauer which we’ve gotten a lot of requests for and are only making them for large frame Glocks like the Glock 17, Glock 22 and Glock 31 and the Glock 20, Glock 21 and Glock 37 firearms as well as the Smith & Wesson M&P 9mm,40 and 45.

It’s always an issue for us to match a customers needs with a holster and find out who makes it, so it’s real simple, if you have a large frame Glock or a Smith & Wesson M&P then the Blackhawk Epoch Level 3 holster is an excellent light bearing level 3 holster.   Blackhawk has a very diverse holster product line for other Duty firearms but isn’t that friendly toward customers looking for gun holsters with tactical lights unless you have a Xiphos weapon light, and to date, we’ve never had a customer tell us they do.   Great holster for Glock and M&P but come on Blackhawk, make more gun options.


New USB Rechargeable Flashlights, is this the future? Yep!

Streamlight Protac 2LWe’ve been hearing about this for awhile, USB rechargeable flashlights.   I believe it was an INOVA flashlight that I first handled that was USB rechargeable.   This is simple going to be the way of the future for all rechargeable flashlights because it’s simple and convenient.   If you walk into your work place, trying to find an unused electrical outlet that you can leave your flashlight to be charged and walk away for 4hrs isn’t going to be easy.  Now you can just sit in front of your computer and plug one of these new Streamlight USB Rechargeable Flashlights in and go about your business.   The one thing I am warning people about is being careful plugging these in.   USB ports tend to not be as rugged as wall jacks and in this industry, people tend to be rough on things and I think that may be one weakness people are going to find out about.

This Protac HL flashlight is the biggest brother in the Protac Series, you can use 2 CR123 batteries instead of a rechargeable battery stick so that’s good if you need a plan B and your Protac HL USB Flashlight goes dead on you.   People are going nuts over all of these High Lumen lights, but please pay attention to the run time, the 850 Lumens is impressive but it only has a run time of 1.5Hrs.   I had an experience a few weeks ago where I had to use Protac 2L on High, extensively, the entire night and after a 5hr Security detail it was practically dead.   It made me wish I had more run time.   I’m impressed by this new Streamlight Flashlight, but always have a backup flashlight, backup batteries or use your light on low power as much as possible.  It’s not fun when your flashlight doesn’t run.


Everyday Carry Flashlights, our recommendation is start with the Streamlight Protac 2L

protac-2lIn this discussion it’s really all going to be about your budget and what fits in your hand and how you are going to be able to carry it.  Flashlights are so bright these days and sometimes strobe can be a major annoyance so if you don’t think you need it, don’t buy it.  I have found for atleast the last 4 years that the Protac Series of flashlights from Streamlight are the best sellers for anyone that wants an everyday carry light, the price, the size, and the output.  Now they are 260 Lumens on high and 13 Lumens at low.  Low power on flashlights is usually used more than high power and is great on saving energy.   I remember when I first started using the Streamlight Scorpions, I was impressed with the 130 Lumens it put out but i remember that it burned through batteries so much that it was time to look for something different.

There is a Protac 1L that takes 1 CR123 battery but I find that too easy to lose and the Streamlight Protac 2L flashlights are better for my hand and has a letter performance.  I have been highly recommending these for years and recently had several Special Ops guys come in and tell me they are using them for defensive purposes.  High lumens and strobing are tactics you can deploy that can work well for in buying you time to bolt, or deploy another defensive measure, pepper spray, fist, baton ect. We always try to keep them in stock, online and in our Showroom and most of our employees are carrying them so feel free to ask about them.




Streamlight TLR Flashlights, is there such a thing as too much?

Streamlight TLR FlashlightsThat is a question I’ve been wondering about and speaking to several Law Enforcement about it because they tend to do a little more hard use of weapon mounted lights and, from what I’m told, there are rules amongst them to not have more than 2 people using flashlights when doing an entry.   It’s a guy thing to want to accessorize the heck out of your AR15, but unless you might be using your Carbine in an outdoor situation, you absolutely should consider the fact that there is such a thing as too many lumens.   I’ve been very happy with about a 6yr history of using a Streamlight Polytac on one of my LWRC M6A1 Carbines which only had 130 lumens and it suited me well.   Now that LED technology has improved so much there aren’t very many flashlights below 200 lumens unless they have a high and low power setting.  Personally, I’d like to see something like the TLR1 series of flashlights have some type of high and low power setting on them.

What kind of options are there for very simple and lightweight carbine lights?  In my opinion it really comes down to the Streamlight TLR-1s which is a 300 lumen flashlight with strobe, the Streamlight TLR1 flashlights that is 630 High Lumens is the TLR1-HL,  and the Streamlight TLR2 which like the TLR1 is 300 lumens, but is a laser light combo.   For some reason we see a pattern of people using the TLR-HL light more on handguns than the TLR-1S.  There is about 1HR and 25 minute run time difference between the two, but since your average Patrolman is more likely to have a sidearm on them and be outdoors the TLR-HL seems to be a better option,  that could also apply to anyone that is CCWing and might be outdoors.  I would find the 630 lumen output to be an overkill for indoor use.  There is some good information on the Panteao Production Make Ready with Pat Rogers : Intro to the shoot house DVD where Pat, does some very good flashlight demonstrations in outdoor environments so check that out.


Streamlight Flashlights from the Protac 2L to the rechargeable Strion and Survivor

Streamlight LED FlashlightsStreamlight is one of those “staples” in this industry and even though Surefire is pretty much the comparison to Streamlight, there is always a niche that one does better than the other.    There have been some price drops for some of the Surefire G2 models and it’s basically due to the improvement of technology and manufacturing ease.    I went through that xenom flashlight faze and all of the LED upgrade but now that LED has been around so long, there are newer generations with much larger output.   Even though flashlights are considered bullet magnets, if the flashlight is damn bright you aren’t going to see anything if you are close to it.  Sure at distances you are drawing attention to yourself and if somebody sees that they might fire on you, but we’re not talking about SWAT tactical or Military operations.  For close situations something like the Streamlight Protac 2L which I highly recommend with the CR123 battery type is a 260 Lumen flashlight.   The strobe features are nice if you train with it but can also be very annoying for non-tactical or defense purposes.

The size of the flashlight, the make up of the body and the output and run time are making flashlights, lighter, stronger and better.     What usually throws a monkey wrench into the reputation of some flashlights are when you are putting mounts on them or running pressure switches.   I have had a higher failure rate with some click on and off flashlights compared to the screw on cap lights, but no where near what pressure switches have.   Pressure switches need better mounting to avoid breakage and excessive wear and so many people don’t pay attention to that.  Get a cord that gets the job done and don’t allow it to be able to bent back and forth.   There are some interesting ways of running them through handguards so read up on it.    The HL or High Lumen flashlights like the Strion HL have the perfect size Streamlight LED Flashlights for most Law Enforcement, the Streamlight Survivor is heavily used in Fire and Rescue.


Upcoming “Night Out” in your local Township? Flashlights and Less Lethal weapons

Streamlight Protac 2LKimber Pepper BlasterEvery year we have been asked to be at our local “Night Out” because we are a business that is use to dealing with people that are concerned about fighting crime and it’s not all about carrying firearms and CCW.   We always warn people when they call us up and tell us they are thinking about carrying a gun because of the crime they are hearing about, like the “knock out game” which recently occurred right near us and is something that has been going around in waves all around the Country.   The pathetic reality about the game is they are picking on individuals that are by themselves and often older or weaker than them.   The answer to defending yourself from this type of crime is not carrying a gun, it’s about situational awareness and in my humble opinion, verbal defense and flashlights and less lethal force like ASP Pepper Sprays, Kimber Pepper Blasters and a good Streamlight Protac 2L with a 260 lumen output and strobe are better starting points.

Without getting into hypothetical reasons of being able to use lethal force in an attack like the “knock out game” there are more stories about people being held up on bus stops and cell phones being stolen over any other crime.   Here in Philadelphia it’s the number one crime that is occurring.   If you are alone always keep your space from any individual or group of people and using verbal defense, lighting them up with a flashlight and using a form of Pepper Spray or cracking a taser to keep them away.  For home defense, the Massad Ayoob Home Defense  DVD from Pantaeo Productions is an excellent give and much of it has to do with having good lighting, not allowing your bushes to grow to high around your house, having a good Alarm System or a dog are also good things to always consider.  One of the biggest suggestions I would have for people attending a Night Out event is to understand how to work with your local Police and be able to give them the information to actually fight crime.   All too often I have met people that don’t know how to gather accurate information like License Plates, Accurate descriptions, time of day and no exaggerations on making reports.  I know plenty of Town Watch people that have been extremely effective in removing problematic neighbors because they knew how to work with Law Enforcement to get things done, and not just complain the police aren’t doing a good job.


Using Flashlights on weapons and for search, how many lumens do you really need?

Streamlight FlashlightsI remember upgrading from the XENON bulbs to LED Upgrades on several of my flashlights a few years ago.   I was using Streamlight Scorpions and Surefire G2 flashlights that I believe were around 80 lumens each and I was impressed back then at how bright they were.   The only piss off I had with them was how the bulbs didn’t really last that long and I didn’t really like the lack of reliability, regardless of how bright they were.   The Streamlight Scorpions were upgraded to about 130 Lumens with the Upgrade kit, and the first thing I did was mount them on my AR15 rifle.   I was very happy having a weapon mounted light on my guns when I was up in the woods of Pennsylvania but I also choose to put a flip on red lense because I learned in Boy Scounts that bright lights can ruin your vision at night.

The old Army Flashlights had multiple lense on them for variations on lense width always came with a red or blue lense.   I don’t know why people forget this when they buy high lumen Streamlight Flashlights and thing 300 Lumens of light is going to win a fight when having low light abilities and being fast on your feet is a much better strategy.    Streamlight is a very good company to choose from and their price points and warranties are going to make our customers feel like they spent their money wisely.   Remember that the light you have on your firearm is not the light that you should always use for searching for something.  Having two flashlights on  your person is really the way to go.

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