Ambient lighting choices

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Ambient lighting choices

Post by AKwanderer » Thu Jan 21, 2010 6:47 pm

Hey folks, first time poster long time lurker here.

I was thinking about ambient lighting in a SHTF scenario. As much as I like my G2, it can only do so much at any given time. That and even with the LED bezel, those lithium batteries only last for about 3.5ish hours of semi consistent use. If I'm trying to set up camp, fix my gear, fix my buddy, repair an engine etc, some kind of lantern is a good thing to have.

The three options I see are chem lights, road flares, and led sticks. I just did a keyword search a minute ago, and it seems like most ZSers lean towards LED sticks for ambient lighting. Thing is, I've never used one of these and I don't personally know anyone who has any for me to play with. I've always used chem sticks, but these have their disadvantages. My biggest gripes are that they're only good for one use, they're temperature sensitive, and that by the end of their burn time the light output is really anemic.


Road flares are good for getting attention quickly, and that really it as far as I can see. I've actually got one road flare in my BoB, though I may ditch it.

Frankly, I'd like to ditch the chem sticks for the LED equivalents. What do you guys use?

The major advantage chem sticks have is that I get them free from work, so I'm not sure if I want to actually spend money on something if I've already got it for free :P. Yes, I'm that cheap.

Thanks!

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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by raptor » Thu Jan 21, 2010 6:53 pm

This is what I use. It is portable and versatile

Image

Here is thread that provides more information.

http://zombiehunters.org/forum/viewtopi ... =6&t=57197" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Add a small solar panel to recharge it or charge it in your car or at a 120 volt power source.

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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by AKwanderer » Thu Jan 21, 2010 7:44 pm

Wow, that is a wicked awesome setup. Not quite what I was thinking of, but that's a good setup to have regardless.

I think I'll be dropping some cash on that, thanks for the heads up!

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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by Woods Walker » Thu Jan 21, 2010 11:26 pm

Maybe get a small LED flashlight and work out a diffuser.

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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by jakecwu » Thu Jan 21, 2010 11:35 pm

A mix of all of the above seems to be a good option. I like chem lights for being disposable, I like small LED lights for their versatility and long-life. A good option is the "LED chem lights" for which I don't have the appropriate name. I know they're available at Home Depot for about $5.99. They have an LED flashlight head at one end, an LED diffuser in the middle, and a whistle at the opposite end. One button click gives you flashlight, two gives you flashlight and diffuser, three gives you diffuser only, and four flashes the diffuser. For the price, they seem to be a good option, come in different colors, and claim to be good for 200 hours. For greater lighting, with greater bulk and weight, I like the fluorescent camping lanterns. Tea candle lanterns are nice too, depending on where you'll use it. Don't burn down your tent!

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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by raptor » Thu Jan 21, 2010 11:39 pm

Energizer makes 2 lanterns that I like a lot. They provide decent area illumination.

This one is an LED lantern that uses D cell batteries with decent illumination and tremendous battery life.
http://www.energizer.com/_layouts/displ ... -LPENR.jpg" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;


This is a smaller LED lantern that uses AA batteries and provides less illumination and less run time but is very compact and light weight.
http://www.energizer.com/_layouts/displ ... -LPENR.jpg" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by Mampfies » Fri Jan 22, 2010 1:27 am

I'm inordinately fond of the Dorcy 4 D round lantern. Get 4 nights worth of good light, can be used as a spot or area lights, can be hung from trees or propped up in various positions. I use one in my campng van for reading. Prefer the softer incandescent light over LED's around camp. Judging by appearance, Dorcy makes the Coleman light at walmart, and a Rayovac version. Sears carries the Dorcy brand. $5-$8 or so.........

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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by Chef » Fri Jan 22, 2010 1:47 am

I'm a fan of the humble candle lantern. They have drawbacks, yes, but they burn a long time, they have that nice candle light glow, they put out a decent amount of heat, you can get 'em at Wal-Mart now. But I still bought mine from the mountain shop.
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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by AKwanderer » Fri Jan 22, 2010 3:33 pm

Jeez, lots of great information here, thanks for the help!

Yeah, I guess I forgot all about the humble little candle lantern. At the very least a couple of candles are going into my BoB.

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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by maldon007 » Fri Jan 22, 2010 3:42 pm

Woods Walker wrote:Maybe get a small LED flashlight and work out a diffuser.

Image

Cool, I was thinking the same thing... one of those led's that have 3 functions or something would be nice, set on low & slap on piece of "frosted" clear plastic (maybe on of those fluorescent light protector tubes?), and hang it... What is your diffuser made from Woods Walker?
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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by Keith B » Fri Jan 22, 2010 3:48 pm

Another advantage of the candle lantern is that it can be used as a, albeit tiny, heat source. It can take the chill out of a tent fairly quickly.
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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by sirenmoses » Fri Jan 22, 2010 8:26 pm

another fan of the candle lantern.

with a reflector, it makes for a nice reading light.

and x2 on above for taking the chill out of a tent.

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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by Necrodamus » Fri Jan 22, 2010 9:01 pm

I like the Niteize LED wand.
No batteries exactly, not even an LED!
It uses the Inova micro lights.
Just turn it on, drop it in and screw on the cap.
The Inova has 3 settings, low, high, and flash.

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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by Woods Walker » Fri Jan 22, 2010 11:45 pm

maldon007 wrote: What is your diffuser made from Woods Walker?
Crazy glue cover. Works good over a Fenix E01, LOD, LD01 or Letherman S1-S2. But you can make one out of anything. Here is another using a 4 oz semi clear bottle with a 1XAA LED flashlight. Heck even on its 2-3 lumen low still puts out more light than most led wands and chemical sticks and will run for 60 hours regulated.


Image

I also like candle lanterns.

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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by Woods Walker » Fri Jan 22, 2010 11:49 pm

Necrodamus wrote:I like the Niteize LED wand.
No batteries exactly, not even an LED!
It uses the Inova micro lights.
Just turn it on, drop it in and screw on the cap.
The Inova has 3 settings, low, high, and flash.
I have one of those too. Haven't used it much but seems to work. The only downside is the CR20?? forgot...... batteries.
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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by northernxposure » Sat Jan 23, 2010 12:35 am

Candle lantern works well for a small local light source, but I found that out in the open it dim's out pretty quick.

I like WW's idea with the superglue cap and bottle (actually borrowed that idea, it works great!), but secretly I'm coveting a Black Diamond Orbit, as it's output with AAA's is pretty impressive. The AA version is even better.

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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by Woods Walker » Sat Jan 23, 2010 1:06 am

northernxposure wrote:Candle lantern works well for a small local light source, but I found that out in the open it dim's out pretty quick.

I like WW's idea with the superglue cap and bottle (actually borrowed that idea, it works great!), but secretly I'm coveting a Black Diamond Orbit, as it's output with AAA's is pretty impressive. The AA version is even better.

NXP
I think a good 1XAA will beat that 4XAAA Orbit by a long shot. Add in a headband and you got a backup headlamp, flashlight and lantern for very little extra bulk.

Image

I was too lazy to remove the lanyard for the hike.

Image
Image

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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by ninja-elbow » Sat Jan 23, 2010 1:16 am

To be honest, other than my SCA days (oil and candle lanterns) I never thought of taking diffused light in my pack. Good idea - now I am searching. Thanks.
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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by northernxposure » Sat Jan 23, 2010 12:42 pm

Woods Walker wrote:
northernxposure wrote:Candle lantern works well for a small local light source, but I found that out in the open it dim's out pretty quick.

I like WW's idea with the superglue cap and bottle (actually borrowed that idea, it works great!), but secretly I'm coveting a Black Diamond Orbit, as it's output with AAA's is pretty impressive. The AA version is even better.

NXP
I think a good 1XAA will beat that 4XAAA Orbit by a long shot. Add in a headband and you got a backup headlamp, flashlight and lantern for very little extra bulk.

Image

I was too lazy to remove the lanyard for the hike.

Image
Argh... that's actually a lot better than the Orbit I had a chance to fool around with.

I take it the light is a Nitecore (via the head band), do you have a model/make for that bottle? It looks like a 4oz Nalgene PDFE...

I hate this forum - constantly making me spend money...

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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by lonewolf15002000 » Sat Jan 23, 2010 1:12 pm

I love the ideas coming from this thread. I have a Fenix EO1 and never knew that a super glue cover would fit it man one more thing to carry every day. I got a great new light for Cmas it comes from Life Gear it is a Flashlight, Flasher/Glowstick, Whistle all in one. It runs for 200+ hours and a big plus in my eyes is they give you Free replacement batteries for life. I've looked at their website and they have lots of other things some worth it and then others that aren't.

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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by aa1pr » Sat Jan 23, 2010 2:08 pm

A white 35mm film canister will also work in most cases as a difusser for FYI.

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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by carrotstick » Sat Jan 23, 2010 2:50 pm

Y'all should check out the Krill lamps. They burn for about 120 hours on two AA batteries and are depth tested to 150 feet. They come in six different colors too.
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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by HHaase » Sat Jan 23, 2010 3:16 pm

If you need to go bigger, I love the multi-fuel coleman lanterns which run on either coleman fuel or unleaded gasoline.
Their propane powered lineup also looks pretty nice, can share fuel sources with camp stoves. Just make sure to keep some spare mantles around, as they are fragile.

There's also the classic oil burning lanterns, which I really need to get off my lazy ass and order a couple of.
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Re: Ambient lighting choices

Post by 111t » Sat Jan 23, 2010 4:44 pm

Kerosene lantern. Pressure and non pressure. Stockpile of kerosene.
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