A few months back, we had a report on the initial product launch from a new company called BlackFire. A division of Klein Tool, they have been making some waves in the outdoor space. For the fall and winter seasons, they have a boatload of new products that you are going to love. This week, we are taking a look at the flashlight offerings.
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Yes, there are a lot of manufacturers in the flashlight space, especially if we put the word “tactical” in the equation. BlackFire is decisively not in the bolt-on your pistol space, but more in the “if you do stuff outside” space. Still, you had better bring some heat if you want to play here. That puts you in competition with everyone from Maglite to Dollar General, and finding a niche is hard.
Fortunately, BlackFire has done just that. A common feature of all of the lights we are looking at today is an onboard rechargeable battery, and it’s a good thing. As soon as these lights came in, my toddler for some reason was obsessed with them. Like, one in each hand every night, and tossed under the couch were in ran to failure while I was trying to make him go to bed obsessed. And since he would freak out if they weren’t ready at dark the next day, I have inadvertently gotten to test the charging cycles of the batteries.
Given that 4 months of testing has given me more uses of a flashlight than I would normally have in 4 years, I am highly impressed with the internal batteries. They still hold a charge a long time and seem none the worse for wear. The cost savings for me, personally, over AA or AAA batteries would be worth this flashlight alone.
Second is durability. You may notice in the pictures that my flashlight looks like someone bashed it into the sidewalk for hours. They did. One night said toddler just went to work on the back steps, and I decided to let it happen since we are doing a review anyway. Not to mention countless drops, and allegedly some throws. While the aluminum outer body did take some damage, I am HIGHLY impressed that nothing stopped working. Oh, I can also attest to the waterproofness. Both flashlight models have been in the pool on countless occasions, and are none the worse for wear.
Despite my kids doing the heavy lifting on these lights, I have actually done some work too. Let’s take a look at the individual product features.
Flashlight with lantern- MSRP $39.99- This one is pretty cool since it can either be a regular flashlight or sit upright and use lantern mode. Combined with the magnetic base, it has proven to be incredibly handy. For either vehicle repair or attic work, I give this one a high recommendation. A bonus feature is the glow-in-the-dark locator ring, so you can find it after you turn it off and drop it in the dark. Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.
Weatherproof 2 color flashlight- The 3 settings on this model really do come in handy. It has a focused long-range spotlight mode and a wide floodlight mode in white. Then you can kick it over to red LED mode to either preserve night vision or make it last longer. At an impressive 48 hours of run time for the 4 lumen red LEDs, this is a great camping light.
LED Headlamp-At 400 Lumens (high setting) 200 Lumens (spotlight) or 100 Lumens (floodlight), this headlamp is P for plenty in confined spaces. The low-profile harness is comfortable, and the Auto-off in bright light is a lifesaver. Who among us also has exited the workspace and forgot to turn off our headlamp? Not me, but I’m sure it’s happened. This is a great headlamp at a very reasonable price.
As the holiday season approaches, keep BlackFire in mind. These lights make great stocking stuffers for everyone and pay for themselves rapidly in battery cost.