I decided to try something a bit different, rather than a Surefire.
I ordered one of Laser Devices 9v series lights to use as a weapon light on shotgun.
well, the light is the same size as my SF Z3. The light was ordered with a coiled wire paddle switch, the package is a nice box that has a foam cut out for the switch, lamp and light body with head attached. Of course instruction and warranty sheets are included.
Specs on the light are HA type III, in a black phosphate finish. The light is available with either lexan or glass lens (I ordered glass). The overall length is the same as my SF Z3. The head appears to be smaller in length but is the same diameter. lamps look like the SF MN series in design and the reflector is fixed to the head of the light. Inside the head is a red rubber gasket that helps to act as a shock isolation by cushioning the base of the lamp as well as a larger outer spring that cushions the base of the lamp (think of the outer spring on a SF lamp but on the reverse side).
The lights are warranted water resistant to 20 meters.O ring seals are way larger than others I have seen from various manufacturers including SF. The outside of the body has heavy knurled rings with checkering that make it extremely "grippy" and there is almost no way you'll lose control of it even with slippery wet hands. It was shipped with 3 123 batteries that are house branded (no country of origin on label).
Set up is pretty straight foreward, unscrew the head and insert the lamp , screw the head back on ( there is some resistance due to the shock isolation system). batteries load from the rear of the body only as there is a bevel in front preventing loading from the front ( this is important in a true weapon light system ). when three batteries are loaded the last battery hangs out about 1/3 of the way, screw on the rear switch that also completes the body and your ready to go.
I mounted the light to my shotgun using one of the Laser Devices mounts made for the model shotgun I have , it mounts up easily and rock solid.
later after the sun went down I found a quiet secluded place in my patrol district where I could play with the light a bit . I compared it to my Z3 with P90 lamp. The LD light is easily the equal in brightness, but the LD seemed to have a bit more throw due to the beam being a bit more narrow. LD claims that the lights are "focusable" for spot or flood by turning the head. I found that turning the head caused a large donut and central black spots as well as introducing artifacts, LD litarature included with the light says that having the head screwed all the way down will provide the tightest spot. I would imagine this also provides the best seal for the light. I will probably never defocus the light.
LD offers a host of switching options mostly geared to the tactical "Operator" including 2 and three way toggles, coiled and straight chords, as well as a tactical clickie. Bodies are available in standard 1" tube or with "ARMS" throw lever mounts integrated in the bodies. 3V/6V/9V bodies are also available. Suggested retail of the OP9 with glass lens and coiled wire paddle is $165.00
Suggested retail of the OP9 with push button clickie is $151.00 (both with glass lenses). lexan is slighly lower priced. Of course there are dealers who will sell for less.
Now the bad.
PILA cells will not fit . The tube is machined so well there is not enough "play" for the PILA cells to fit, it's just too tight. 123's fit perfect and have no up and down play at all. This is a good thing for a weapon light as you want your batteries to stay in contact and not have a uneeded battering. This combined with the fact that the batteries can not be removed from the front make for a very well engineered weapon light.
all in all I am very impressed with the system.
Thanks for the review. It gives me all the more reason to buy 2 LD lights instead of 1 SF!