Living on the Road

LED Zoomable Flashlight


Adjustable focus flashlight for flood or spot illumination

I bought three of these small flashlights for my boat – I like to have one within easy reach from the cockpit, one at the navigation station and one near my bunk. They clip securely into readily available Beckson Clipmate holders (CM-1B is the right size, I think), so they are where they should be when you need them to be.

The flashlights have a weighty machined aluminum body, LED light source (100,000 hour lifespan!, doubtful) and are marketed as waterproof – they appear to be but I haven’t tested that in any way. They are very bright, but their unique feature is a thick fish-eye lens coupled with a sliding head that creates a zoom capacity. This allows it to cast a broad swath of light as a regular flashlight does or a very concentrated beam. At its most focused setting the beam displays as four bright bars – apparently that’s what the LED(s) put out. It looks a little odd, but does the trick.

A quick succession of button presses turns on two different flasher sequences, one apparently SOS Morse code (?) but whether the code is correct or not is beside the point, you will get the attention of anyone who sees the pulsating light.

Given their heft, brightness, probable/possible waterproof-ness, LED life expectancy, these flashlights seem like a real bargain at $7.90 each. So I bought four more, for the house and car. For less than the cost of a couple of Maglites I can stick one of these everywhere I might need them.

-- Quinn McKenna 01/15/16