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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everone,
I didn't find any threads on this, so I figured I'd start one. For our trip to bring our "new" boat home in the spring, we'd like to have a handheld spotlight on board. When I started checking online for reviews, etc., it seems most had somewhat poor reviews (complaints of product not working, etc). So here I am asking for a recommendation.

We're looking for a handheld, probably a rechargeable, since we don't yet have a 12v outlet in the cockpit, and won't likely have that before the trip. Ideally, it would be rechargeable by 12v DC (at least). Although these are not expensive items, when you need one, you NEED one. So we want to make sure it's reliable. Any suggestions?

Thanks!
-J
 

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For a low cost solution - look into bicycle helmet lighting. More than enough to handle your needs (as long as someone doesn't look directly at you. ) Most headlamps worn this manner have red leds, etc.. For serious lighting - you'll need to put a 12 volt cig receptacle that will allow you to use the more mainstream hand held lighting solutions..
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Jody. I'm thinking we'll need the more serious kind--well, actually I hope we won't need it at all. But what I mean is, we're looking for a spotlight that will do things like help us get into a coastal inlet at night.

I could always get an extension cable/jack for a 12v outlet down below as a temporary fix. Just wondering if the rechargables are a good alternative.

Also wondering about the LED spotlights, and if they are bright enough.
-J
 

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Thanks Jody. I'm thinking we'll need the more serious kind--well, actually I hope we won't need it at all. But what I mean is, we're looking for a spotlight that will do things like help us get into a coastal inlet at night.

I could always get an extension cable/jack for a 12v outlet down below as a temporary fix. Just wondering if the rechargables are a good alternative.

Also wondering about the LED spotlights, and if they are bright enough.
-J
LED - more than enough... seriously. I have a remote hard mounted spotlight on deck, + a 12 volt handheld full halogen spotlight - what has worked best was the headband led types..

Just my experience...
 

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Discussion Starter #5
LED - more than enough... seriously. I have a remote hard mounted spotlight on deck, + a 12 volt handheld full halogen spotlight - what has worked best was the headband led types..

Just my experience...
Something like these guys from Optronics?

 

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Ditto on the headlamp types as this was our favorite, too. Ours have retractable elastic bands. We used to have the cloth-type headband ones but they tend to get 'stretched out' too much.

Regarding a Rechargable "handheld" Spotlight - try to find one that will allow you to use it while it's being recharged - nothing more frustrating that finding a dead battery when you need to use it in a hurry.

Michele
 

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We've run through several variants of the rechargeable "Million Candlepower" lights -- none of which lasted very long. We currently have one that plugs in. You don't need them often, but when you do they are valuable additions to the boat's kit. One problem I've had with the really powerful lights is that they destroy your night vision because they light up the foreground (deck house, rigging, and immediate surroundings). Most of the time we get by with less powerful lights, e.g. 6V flashlights.
 

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flashlights / spot lights

Jim

I think you need an M6 Guardian flashlight from SureFire! 500 lumens! Urrggg! More power!



And, because it will be my birthday soon, you can get me one as well. ;)

Check out the price tag!

Rik
 

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He's right - bright lights blind

We've run through several variants of the rechargeable "Million Candlepower" lights -- none of which lasted very long. We currently have one that plugs in. You don't need them often, but when you do they are valuable additions to the boat's kit. One problem I've had with the really powerful lights is that they destroy your night vision because they light up the foreground (deck house, rigging, and immediate surroundings). Most of the time we get by with less powerful lights, e.g. 6V flashlights.
Like billyruffin, we have a spotlight, put away. We use a Maglight 2 D. It focuses a tight beam so we can pick out markers a good way off, but is not so bright as to blind and is much more controllable. Clearly, you want to have a number of good flashlights on board. Headlamps too.

I haven't used the spotlight in years.

An underwater dive light - a small one - is very useful too. A real lifesaver when you drop something you need.
 

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i have a led 3 cell mag light, head lamps and a 120 volt 250 watt halogen work light on board. if i need to light the way i strap the work light up front and plug it in to the inverter.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Jim

I think you need an M6 Guardian flashlight from SureFire! 500 lumens! Urrggg! More power!

And, because it will be my birthday soon, you can get me one as well. ;)

Check out the price tag!

Rik
Ha ha! :laugher I'll run right out and grab one of those. $425 for a flashlight it totally reasonable, especially if you buy TWO.

Thanks everyone for the responses. It seems the point a lot of people were making is that a spotlight isn't necessarily the item we need for reasonable illumination.

Thanks again!
-J
 

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<TABLE class=ProdTopHalf cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0 border=0><TBODY><TR vAlign=top><TD class=PD_Column1><TABLE cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0 border=0><TBODY><TR align=left><TD></TD><TD style="BACKGROUND-IMAGE: url(http://images.westmarine.com/ProductDisplay/WBRightSide.gif); BACKGROUND-REPEAT: repeat-y"> </TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top align=right>
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This is the spotlight I have on board. Had it for a few years now. Have not had a problem!​
</TD><TD class=PD_Column2 width=228>OPTRONICS

Pro Torx 1M Candlepower Rechargeable Spotlight
<SCRIPT><!-- var upsellArr = new Array();//--></SCRIPT><!-- syed_wm --><!-- syed_wm_end --><FORM name=OrderItemAddForm action=OrderItemAdd method=post> $24.99
<SCRIPT><!-- upsellArr[0] = 'N';//--></SCRIPT><!-- BEGIN DDC1 Shriya Code added for endeca(product display) -->


</FORM></TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>
 

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When you are looking for an unlit buoy in a inlet with lots of background lighting, you need lots more light than headband or flashlight will provide. Get one of the cheap "million candlepower" lights. Plan on getting a new one regularly - but they are pretty cheap. They do last longer if you recharge them monthly (even during the off season) whether or not you used it.
 

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Those SureFire lights are amazing. We had one donated to us by one of our blog followers. It's the size of a penlight and it puts out more light than our 4D cell Maglite. The only issue (other than the price) is that they use special batteries, but they are absolutely mind boggling as to the amount of light they put out. They are used by police and special forces, among others.
 

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We've run through several variants of the rechargeable "Million Candlepower" lights -- none of which lasted very long.
<O:p</O:p

<O:p</O:p
I echo Billy's thoughts. The Hand Held Spots we have used over the years never have been very reliable. We went through several West Marine Models and were never happy with any of them. I found one I Liked on Defender and used it for two years, we always kept it charged up and plugged in when not in use. There is a winding river that we like to explore just to the South of our marina. It is marked with buoys and cans, but none of them are lit.
After a nice dinner last year, we decided to try the river at night for the first time. I sent Julie to the bow with our hand held and asked that she shine the light and point out the cans as we proceeded up the two mile motor cruise. The fully charged spot died just as we passed the last can. I was disappointed in its performance for longer term use. In most cases the spots are used very intermittently. This was the first time we used it for somewhat prolonged use and it only lasted about half and hour with on and off use. Of course, plugging it into the twelve volt outlet is always an option, but I like the source of the light up forward at the bow to ensure I don't get blinded.<O:p</O:p
I am looking for another reliable hand held myself. I might try the Ryobi that was suggested.<O:p</O:p<O:p</O:p
 

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The benefit of the Ryobi spotlight (besides the fact that it included the handdrill, etc. for which we also needed) was the fact that we could swap-out the battery having purchased a second battery. Just remembering to recharge them both was key.
 

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You guys have peaked my interest.
One thing I will have to admit, I found my hand held safely packed away for the season, upon removing it from the box it was in, the first thing I noticed was the warning to never let it fully discharge. Oops, my bad.

Next question. I see now more often than in the past, a rating of "Lumen". 80 Lumen.. 150 Lumen and etc. Can somebody explain how this relates to candle power. Say how does 150 Lumen compare to 2mil candle power.
 

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Ouch! My brain hurts.

You guys have peaked my interest.
One thing I will have to admit, I found my hand held safely packed away for the season, upon removing it from the box it was in, the first thing I noticed was the warning to never let it fully discharge. Oops, my bad.

Next question. I see now more often than in the past, a rating of "Lumen". 80 Lumen.. 150 Lumen and etc. Can somebody explain how this relates to candle power. Say how does 150 Lumen compare to 2mil candle power.
A LUMEN is a unit of measurement of light. It measures light much the same way. Remember, a foot-candle is how bright the light is one foot away from the source. A lumen is a way of measuring how much light gets to what you want to light! A LUMEN is equal to one foot-candle falling on one square foot of area.

A candlepower as a unit of measure is not the same as a foot-candle. A candlepower is a measurement of the light at the source, not at the object you light up.

If you want more DETAILED conversion data I suggest you Google Lumen vs. Candlepower; its complicated and probably not really all that important to what you want to know.
 
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