Rangemaster's lowlight AAR

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Rangemaster's lowlight AAR


Post by fm2 » Fri Apr 18, 2008 3:12 pm

I was lucky enough to attend a class by Tom Givens @ Rangemaster recently. He covered the history of low light & night time use of handguns.
The techniques used were/are driven by technology. Here's some of the thoughts from the class.

Flashlight generations
1) electric torch 1890-1960
2) Kel-tec & Maglight 1960?- present. Characterized by aircraft aluminum body, better switch, and mainly a sealed bulb.
3) Surefire products 1987- present. Battery technology allows more power in a smaller light.
4) Surefire products ; the new big head flashlights

He covered the pros & cons of the various techniques; FBI, Harries, Suarez, Chapman/Ayoob, Marine Corps, Rogers, Hargrieves, and neck index.

Charles Askins tried many things woking out of the El Paso office of the Border Patrol,in the early attempts at making the handgun more effective at night. Nickle plating, extremely large sights, highway jewels(reflective lane markers), Radium paint, and an 1/8 ivory bead front sight with a shallow v rear sight with a white outline were used to enhance the ability to use the pistol in the dark.

What was El Paso was like in the 1930's? How many houses had electricity? Not a lot, so there wasn't much ambient light, dark meant DARK.
El Paso was a crossroads for smuggling booze, drugs and slavery. There was one fatal gunfight every three nights for a three year period in the 30's. That's a lot of gunfights.

The purpose of the flashlight is to find, ID, justify action ( see a weapon etc...) and obscure the BG's vision.
Today most of our travels are in low light. Thinking about where we go regularly, it's rarely dark, parking lots, sidewalks, parking garages, and our front yards/driveway .

The requirements are
1) small size
2) aluminum or polymer body
3) tailcap switch
4) momentary click on switch
5) pre-focused beam
6) Li power for tactical lights. Alkaline or Ni-Cad power for utility lights.
7) beware too much power/ keep tool contextually relevent.
8) output 65-120 Lumens with 85-90 recomended.

The class was an excellent learning experience. Tom covered a lot more material that was in the history and people using flashlights in his FOF classes. He is an outstanding instructor and I highly recommend training with him.
“It is the belief that violence is an aberration that is dangerous because it lulls us into forgetting how easily violence may erupt in quiescent places.” S. Pinker

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Re: Rangemaster's lowlight AAR


Post by Paladin » Fri Apr 18, 2008 4:04 pm

Awesome AAR! Thanks fm2!!!
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Re: Rangemaster's lowlight AAR


Post by Mike1951 » Fri Apr 18, 2008 7:23 pm

fm2 wrote: Kel-light & Maglight 1960?-
In 1982, Streamlight bought a competitor, KEL-Light, a machined-aluminum flashlight manufacturer with its own product line. Before that, Streamlight only had rechargeable flashlights, so the purchase opened up a whole new market.
My first few police duty flashlights were Kel-Light's, every bit as good as Maglights.
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