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Posted: 8/25/2004 12:21:23 PM EST
[Last Edit: 8/25/2004 2:16:31 PM EST by G-Rated]
$200 for a Surefire shotgun forend? Fuk dat chit!

I had a serious need for a light on my 870. I explored a lot of options including a few other DIY options. Surefire forend was way too expensive and I didn't like the looks of it or how it placed the light far from the barrel axis. Mounting a G2 etc. on the mag tube would work, but it would pretty much just be a "constant-on" light due to location. I also considered adapting a pressure switch and cord to a light, but I couldn't find any pressure switches and had the problem of working in a constant-on switch along with the momentary pressure switch. Somewhere along the way, it came to me: Epoxy a G2 to an 870 forend! Due to your natural thumb position, you could use the light's built in momentary and constant on switches. The location would also put the light very close to the barrel axis and maintain a low profile.

What you need:

-Surefire G2
-JB weld (the overnight stuff, not 5min)
-an old 870 forend
- a touch of black spray paint
- a couple hours

Description of process below the pics.















Figure out your natural hand position and put the tailcap of the light juuuuust ahead of your thumb. This will alow you to hit the momentary tailcap switch without changing your grip. You then position the light in the built-in channel of the forend. I also added a thin scrap piece of aluminum behind the light to space it out just a tad. This made sure I hand ample clearance for the tailcap to turn. Fire up the epoxy and position your light. I used zip ties to hold it in place and put some hot glue OVER the epoxy to keep it from running while it dried. This was a key part of the process as I had JB weld trying to escape on me within a half minute or so. Initially, I oriented the light as close as possible to what I thought would be "sighted in" from previous trials, then I double checked after an hour of dry-time and re-adjusted slightly as the light had started to creep a little.

That's it. It's pretty straight forward, you just have to pay attention to how you align the light. Strength is NOT an issue, at least with the overnight JB-weld I used. You can swing the gun around by the light.

The gray stuff is 3M rubberized no-skid strips from the hardware store.

Props to Die-Tryin for hosting the photos.

EDIT: In case you are wondering, the light is attached via ~100 degrees of surface area.
Link Posted: 8/25/2004 2:26:16 PM EST
Link Posted: 8/25/2004 2:43:56 PM EST
Have you tried firing it yet while using your thumb on the tail cap button? I'm wondering if it will jam your thumb when it recoils....
Link Posted: 8/25/2004 4:45:48 PM EST

Originally Posted By gus:
Have you tried firing it yet while using your thumb on the tail cap button? I'm wondering if it will jam your thumb when it recoils....



That was my first thought as well.
Link Posted: 8/25/2004 6:35:42 PM EST
[Last Edit: 8/25/2004 6:36:22 PM EST by G-Rated]

Originally Posted By gus:
Have you tried firing it yet while using your thumb on the tail cap button? I'm wondering if it will jam your thumb when it recoils....



I shot about 12 rounds through it doing both momentary on and constant-on. It does hit your thumb some (I'll say "firmly"), but not enough to be painful. You'll never know it happened if you have to use it under stress. It actually works surprisingly well and doesn't seem to hinder follow-up shots. I'll put a few more rounds through it when I get a chance and see if I can dig up some nasty hi-base loads.
Link Posted: 8/25/2004 6:42:05 PM EST
[Last Edit: 8/25/2004 6:42:36 PM EST by G-Rated]

Originally Posted By Paul:
Nice job but be aware that the bulbs used in the $200 lights are different - and have some sort of shock mounting on them. Try taking your weapon out, heating the bulb up and letting loose with a couple rounds.



One of the principles I based this project on was that the bulb assembly in the G2 was supposed to be the same as the ones in the hi-dollar weapon-lights. At least that was what was discussed in a few threads I saw. I was not aware of a special shock mounting and would be very interested to hear more about this, maybe someone who has an authentic surefire forend could take theirs apart and tell us what's inside.

I shot 12 rounds so far with no problems, but I really want to hear about this shock mounting.





PS: Are you able to change the batteries still



What do you think? You're killin me!
Link Posted: 8/25/2004 6:42:13 PM EST
Link Posted: 8/26/2004 7:13:42 AM EST
[Last Edit: 8/26/2004 7:16:57 AM EST by Sharkman]
The recoil is going to fuck up your light. It's not the bulb assembly you have to worry about--it's the reciol driving the battery up THROUGH the bulb assembly. It WILL happen, just watch.
Link Posted: 8/26/2004 10:49:01 AM EST
Nice try Macgyver, but the $200 lights have shock isolated bezels that are designed to take the recoil of a firearm. I would guess that your light will not survive a few dozen rounds of high energy stuff. However, surefire does sell a seperate shock isolated head for ~$35 (z32? do a search) that will fit the G2 so I would suggest going that route. A $200 weapons light for $75 is still no that bad.
Link Posted: 8/26/2004 3:14:50 PM EST

Originally Posted By cnorton:
However, surefire does sell a seperate shock isolated head for ~$35 (z32? do a search) that will fit the G2 so I would suggest going that route.



Thanks, an easy ~$20 fix.

This deffinately isn't a setup for a lot of shooting, but it'll work for the closet shotgun role till I get something better.
Link Posted: 8/26/2004 3:40:08 PM EST
I have frequently thought about doing something like this by mounting a bit of pic. rail to a foreend and using a KAC light mount and a M2 centurion (b/c M2 already has the shock isolated bezel). Yes, you will probably need the shock isolated bezel and a wrapped 6v battery pack used in the weapon lights--it has a rubber washer btw. batteries to lesson recoil damage. I've also thought that the Z48/49 tailcaps would be better for this application too. The battery pack and bezel will add longevity to your budget project--but what you have now probably works as good as any of the non-surefire options out there.

My idea was to offer more interchangeable parts between handheld/shotgun/carbine, but your's is much more geared toward quality budget parts. I really admire you ingenuity--the idea of bonding the light inside the radius of the forearm to increase bonding area is really good.
I might have to try this.

-Chad
Link Posted: 8/27/2004 1:14:09 PM EST

Originally Posted By moorerwc:

My idea was to offer more interchangeable parts between handheld/shotgun/carbine, but your's is much more geared toward quality budget parts.

-Chad



That's just it. I needed a cheap light setup with EFFECTIVE momentary and constant on switching. My main concern is to be able to get light on target quickly and easily....no screwing around or changing my grip drastically. The firing comfort of this setup isn't the best with it hitting your thumb and all (my thumb was a little stiff the next day), but then again, I don't plan on shooting any competitions with it. It's just going to sit in the closet.
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