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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Can you guys/gals share your opinions on whether a rail mounted light, from a tactical standpoint, is...

a) BETTER than a hand-held light

b) Either one - doesn't matter

c) NOT as good as a hand-held light


This would apply ANY handgun you might have experience with, Taurus or not. Also, is the contention that a mounted light can cause malfunctions in cycling an "old wife's tale" or is it based in fact? (I enter this on the PT92 thread because that's the gun I'm seriously considering next, but again, your experience with any handgun with a light leading to a malfunction, or not causing a malfunction, would be good.)

The malfunction issue is new to me, I just stumbled on a couple articles about it (it's always something, right? :bang: ) If there is anything to this, it would make me rethink the necessity of my next gun HAVING to have a light, which is where I am at right now...
 

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None of my firearms have any rail lights. I don't even own a light I could put on the rail, well without using duct tape that is. :D

I can see just fine in my house at night the vast majority of the time between ambient light from outside and the multitude of lights inside (clocks, DVR's, electronics etc). For those rare occurrences, maybe a power outage in a thunderstorm I have a handheld flashlight. Speaking form a purely tactical calculation as Sun Tsu would say, in my home I have the advantage over the terrain which gives me an edge from the start. In my opinion I loose some of that advantage with a light shining.

If I was going into somewhere unknown that would change the calculus. But for home defence I never saw the need for a light beyond a handheld one in those rare instances I mentioned above.

I would go with handheld over rail mounted for home. It gives you more versatility in my opinion.

Just my 2¢.
 

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I have a rail light on a tactical-length 12 gauge shotgun. I also have a small-but-powerful handheld light on my nightstand; that is my primary. The rail light is either a backup, or else when I need both hands on the 12 gauge but I need a light, too. Remember the adage, "Two is one, and one is none." Ol' Man Murphy is always standing at your shoulder when things get tense.

Or when the cattle and horses get out at 2:00 AM, and that flashlight you grabbed decides to fry the filament in a brief flash as you head out the door in boots and pajamas.
 

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No rail on any of my firearms.
I don't need to give the intruder a nice bright target to shoot at.
Plus I know my house and where everything is in the dark.
If I need to see I just flip a light switch.
 

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I'm used to a hand held light, my father was a LEO and taught me to use one that way. I have thought of using one on my bedside gun a XD-9 but I know the layout of my house and have nightlights in all the right places. Inside my house I doubt I would need a flashlight anyway. Even though I have a very bright bedside light.

I did have one on a tactical 12 gauge for a bit but found the batteries were always dead. It's not like it gets a lot of use. My home is protected by very bright motion sensor lights on the four corners and they light up everything out back to the field. The front is triggered by anyone walking in the street or by my car.

Plus I carry a small but powerful 600 Lumen light in my pocket that has bright, turbo holy crap bright and strobe. It's made by Protech and is called the Pro600RC rechargeable task light and it comes with a head strap. I got one for my dad, it is highly recommended. It recharges by a small magnetic USB cable and last forever on a charge.
 

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I don't see a problem with putting a good light on your rail, if you feel like doing so. At the very least, it would free up a hand to do other things. Having said that, I don't currently own a rail light. I had a TLR-1 a long time ago but sold it because I really didn't use it all that much. I think if I bought another one, I would mount it on my bedroom gun, just in case I needed it.
 

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No lights on any of my home defensive weapons. I am also of the opinion that >I< know my house (inside and out) better than any intruder so in a defensive situation why light up your position and tell your attacker "Hey, I'm over here!!!" when you have the tactical advantage of positional awareness. I do have a handheld flashlight with a bazillion lumens if I need to do a simple (non life threatening) interior or perimeter search.
 

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I'm used to a hand held light, my father was a LEO and taught me to use one that way. I have thought of using one on my bedside gun a XD-9 but I know the layout of my house and have nightlights in all the right places. Inside my house I doubt I would need a flashlight anyway. Even though I have a very bright bedside light.

I did have one on a tactical 12 gauge for a bit but found the batteries were always dead. It's not like it gets a lot of use. My home is protected by very bright motion sensor lights on the four corners and they light up everything out back to the field. The front is triggered by anyone walking in the street or by my car.

Plus I carry a small but powerful 600 Lumen light in my pocket that has bright, turbo holy crap bright and strobe. It's made by Protech and is called the Pro600RC rechargeable task light and it comes with a head strap. I got one for my dad, it is highly recommended. It recharges by a small magnetic USB cable and last forever on a charge.


Sent from my SM-G930P using Tapatalk
 

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C. Prime rule of gun handling... do not point your gun until you have identified your target.
 

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I have a light mounted to my HD shotgun. The nightstand pistol does not have a light mounted but I do have a hand held light on the night stand. I think the one biggest issue with a weapon mounted light is you have to point the weapon/light at whatever to see what it is. What if it turns out to be a family member.

I have never heard of a pistol rail mounted light causing cycling issues. I can't say it hasn't ever happened though.
 

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This is one of many opinions/choices that the particular person must decide, myself no i have no weapon mounted lights.
1) I have nite lights strategically placed along certain routes (halls etc) to get to me, so they make a nice illumination to outline a target.
2) all my defense guns have tritium sights on them.
3) I don't want to throw my entire weapon at an invader if I run out of ammo, with a hand held light i can chunk the flashlight and still keep the gun as a club.
4) I find that a hand held light can light up a dead body laying in the floor very well, a s good as a Weapon mounted light I assume?
I can't imagine IF a light is mounted to a rail that it would cause any malfunction as its not on the slide or near the ejection port?
 

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My nightstand gun is a Glock 17 with a rail light.
I also keep a flashlight beside it.
I want to have the option to go either way.
I'll decide depending on the situation.
Maybe I won't use either, but I want to be ready.
 

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I have one on my Ruger Security Nine which currently has bedroom duty. I also keep a 3 cell Streamlight flashlight on the nightstand next to me. I figure worse case the Streamlight can serve as a club. I can take or leave the rail mounted light and would not buy another one for another pistol.
 

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I have a bunch of different handheld flashlights from various manufacturers. I think that the most impressive flashlights sometimes are surprisingly inexpensive. Yeah, I expect a $100+ flashlight to be pretty awesome. I have lower expectations from cheap flashlights, but have nonetheless been impressed by some. I have 3 on my nightstand right now and at least 3 more in the nightstand drawer, lol.

My go-to handheld flashlight right now is the low-ish priced Ozark Trail 750:
https://www.walmart.com/ip/Ozark-Trail-750-Lumen-Rechargeable-Camping-Flashlight/484980485

What I like about it is:
1) USB rechargable. Just take any old micro-USB cable and plug it right in. The charger is on-board. It has a bi-color LED to tell you that its charging and when its done.
2) Two modes. High and low. Defaults back to high after about 2 seconds being off. Perfect.
3) Cosine distribution. Intense hot spot in the middle that falls off in a cosine wave pattern so you get modest lighting at very wide angles.

I've learned that I don't like "lensed" flashlights because they flatten the beam leading to an even field with a sharp cutoff at the edge. I much more prefer a cosine distribution which comes from a deep reflector and no lens. I can pick up a flashlight and immediately know if I'm interested in it or not just by looking at the business end.

My rail is taken up by a laser, so no light on my EDC/first nightstand pistol, but I do have a compact weapon light on my PDW. I'll post it in a bit.
 

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See, I thought this thread was gonna be about light rail and we were gonna talk about street cars.
 

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Here's my personal defensive weapon - a Freedom Ordinance FX-9. I put the angled fore grip on it with an Ozark Armament flashlight right in front of the AFG.
A few nice things about this flashlight:
1) Quite bright. It's rated at 500 lumens and that seems reasonably rated compared to other flashlights I have.
2) Cosine distribution. It has a deep reflector and no lens, so you get an intense spot that tapers to an extremely wide, dim beam.
3) Single CR123A battery. I go back and forth on this one. For often used flashlights, I generally like Li-Ion rechargeable. For less often used flashlights, I like CR123A or other common lithium battery because of the higher battery quality being less likely to leak. And CR123As have a minimum 10 year shelf life. Plus I have 'em laying around because my Eotechs seem to eat 'em.
4) Really small for its output. It's designed for pistols, but fits perfectly on my FX-9 rail.
5) Side mounted "pull to toggle" switch. Pressing it won't make it turn on in a gun case. Plus, with the AFG, my thumb is right there ready to pull it.

Rail Mount LED Pistol Light - Ozark Armament

It has two modes... High and strobe. Honestly I'd rather it have high and low, but that's just my opinion.
FX-9.jpg

FX-9 Flashlight.jpg

I like that flashlight enough that I bought a 2nd one to install on my Springfield Saint Edge AR pistol:
Saint Edge.jpg
Obviously I haven't mounted it yet, but my plan is to put an AFG and flashlight on it just like my FX-9. I have the AFG and light, I just have to find the right M-Lok to Pic rail to finish it up.

BTW, that FX-9 is SOOO much fun. 9mm, takes Glock mags, absurdly accurate for a "pistol" (lol). I've got a Sig Romeo5 on it and a Sig Romeo5XDR on the Springfield Saint Edge.

My personal opinion is that if you've got kids, you need a flashlight. Don't matter if they're young or if they're out of the house. Grown kids can come by unannounced at all hours.
 

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I've got a Surefire Responder forearm on the 1100 that I put together as a dedicated house gun.



Don't use them on handguns. I prefer hand lights to rail lights. Old school Maglites have the advantage of being handy clubs, too.
 

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