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SureFire HL1-B-TN "Helmet light"

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  • SureFire HL1-B-TN "Helmet light"

    Illumination devices are all the rage now. For 30 years I got along with a "flashlight" and then a new company called "SureFire" brought out a "Combat Light" with a rubber ring to aid in holding it in combination with a handgun...wow...cool...so I got a hold of a SureFire 6Z a three battery, 123A's, "combat light" and also a 6P for general use. The next was a "Millenium M2 Centurion" a "X200" weapons light and a few others. All of these "illumination tools" are still in use and always in my gear.

    We recently received some of the SureFire "Helmet lights", the "Model HL1-B-TN" to be exact. What that means is it's a MODEL HL1, the B means it's white light and IR, and the TN it's in dark earth. All models have a flashing IR strobe for IFF (identification friend or foe) on the side. And all come with a helmet mount. The helmet mount will fit the "Modular Integrated Communications Helmet" or MICH TC 2000, the "Advanced Combat Helmet" or ACH and the older "Personnel Armored System for Ground Trooops" or PASGT. Being and old timer I like the PASGT for airborne operations because it covers more of my sensitive head lol.

    Out of the box they look like this, thery come attached to the helmet mount.
    [attachment=15668:1.jpg]

    Here's better look at the light assembly itself. It comes with the allen wrench needed to attach it to your helmet that is stored in the end of the helmet mount assembly.The tubular part of the light is where you place the one 123A battery to operate the light, it's cap is held captive by a rubber strap so you don't loose it in the field. On the side of the light there's a rubber button that you push to adjust the lights "power" there are three positions for low, medium and high light levels. Below the button is the lens of the IR IFF strobe.
    [attachment=15669:2.jpg]

    On the back of the light housing are two rubber sealed toggle switches. The switch on the right controls both the white light and IR light, Center position is off pushed to the right (in the photo) turns the white light on, when pushed to the left it turns your IR illumination on. the switch to the left is for the IR strobe when pushed to the right the strobe is on. Also shown is the battery cap, by rotating it counter clockwise you can disable the lights and save battery power, it only needs about 1/4 turn to do this.
    [attachment=15670:3.jpg]

    Here are the five lens of the LED lights, three are white light and two for IR.
    [attachment=15671:4.jpg]

    This is the "Helmet light" system. On the left is the "Z71 MOLLE vest clip" this is what we opted for these are a separate item. In the center is the light unit itself. On the right the helmet mount that comes with the light unit. The lever with the pad on the mounts are the locking levers to lock and remove the light unit. Both mounts ratchet to aim your light where you want it. The helmet mount has a 360 mount the vest a 180.
    [attachment=15672:5.jpg]

    Here is the MOLLE vest mount on a TAP chest rig. Tghe light bracket is at 90 degrees...
    [attachment=15673:6.jpg]

    Same mount with the light attached at around a 45 degree angle...
    [attachment=15674:7.jpg]

    And here at a 90 degree angle with white light on...
    [attachment=15675:8.jpg]

    Here is the helmet mount front view, it isntalls very easy with two set screws and a flat blade scew. It does not need any modifications to the helmet, at least issue helmets mentioned above, and mounts very solidly...
    [attachment=15676:9.jpg]

    And as with ALL IR ILLUMINATION it can be seen with passive NVG's and other image intesification devices...
    [attachment=15677:10.JPG]

    We like these units and use them on our chest rigs and vests attached to the MOLLE runs. I went with the White light so we can read maps better, both the red and blue illumination wash out standardized map markings. While the blue is usefull for spotting blood on camo uniforms, which our primary medic uses. They are a good general use flashlight and are by no means a combat light with a good IR IFF strobe built in. I recommend them highly as a small usefull flashlight.

    On the cheap end those little "photon" flashlights are a good unit to have if all you need is white light. They use a slide type switch that stays off when you want it off and on when you need it. There's one in the supply channels that has a clothes pin type clip on the back that allows the light to ratchet in a 360 degree arc. These come packed like hard candy...lol...don't eat it
    [attachment=15678:1C.JPG]

    Here's the light out of it's wrapper...
    [attachment=15679:2C.JPG]

    And here the clip. It will rotate 360 degrees and clamp on anything that will fit in it's jaws. The loop is good to dummy cord your light so you won't loose it if knocked off.
    [attachment=15680:3C.JPG]

    It will attach anywhere you have something that fits into it's jaws like MOLLE and watch bands like here...
    [attachment=15681:4C.JPG]

    Or even on the peak of your cap. The white beam is not adjustable but is bright enough for use as a small flashlight if you do not need IR...
    [attachment=15682:5C.JPG]

    So there you have it, both lights perform good enough for what they are intended for. Of course the $190.00 light does more but the little one for a few dollars does the job too if you do not need the variable out put and IR features. LOL, I carry two of the little clip ons just incase I eat one

    Take care...Jim
    Attached Files
    "A FAMILY THAT STANDS TOGETHER AND FIGHTS TOGETHER STAYS TOGETHER" The combined Dutch Family...


    "But I've a rendezvous with Death, at midnight in some flaming town, when spring trips north again this year, and I to my pledge word am true, I shall not fail that rendezvous"

    Alan Seeger, KIA Belloy-en-Santerre 4 July 1916, Legion Entrangere, American poet.



  • #2
    That light is a good piece of gear, but after using it for some time, I'll offer some advice:

    The plastic pieces that block the switches will break, which will cause your light to turn on when you don't want it to, in storage. Remember to turn the battery cover after you're done with your helmet, every day. I've broken my plastic switch covers, and killed my battery a few times before it hit home. And, thanks to Murphy, it'll be the IR switch that turns on so you don't notice until it's too late.

    The mount can be a pain to put on the left side of a helmet. I wanted mine on the left side so I can use my support hand to operate the switches, and it took some time with a leatherman to get right.

    But overall, I like it, and it's nice to have as an additional light source.

    Comment


    • #3
      Yep, plastic breaks. But supply has more They work great for map reading and equipment set up in the field. As far as acciedental illumination we've been placing 550 tape on them when not being used or removing them and putting them in the 7X62X51mm magazine pouch in the TAP.

      If your light mount is an older one they didn't fit too well on anything but the MICH, the new mount more or less fit all military issue helmets even the old PASGT.

      Take care...Jim
      "A FAMILY THAT STANDS TOGETHER AND FIGHTS TOGETHER STAYS TOGETHER" The combined Dutch Family...


      "But I've a rendezvous with Death, at midnight in some flaming town, when spring trips north again this year, and I to my pledge word am true, I shall not fail that rendezvous"

      Alan Seeger, KIA Belloy-en-Santerre 4 July 1916, Legion Entrangere, American poet.


      Comment


      • #4
        JY,
        Hey bud, now that you have been using this for a while how is your love affair with it? I have been considering one for the side of the helmet for a simple navigation light, and close range IR illumination.
        CelticRaven

        -- Poor is the country with no heroes and worse yet, is the country that forgets its heroes.

        Plan for what CAN happen, not what HAS happened.
        --CelticRaven

        The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.
        --Thomas Jefferson

        Comment


        • #5
          I've got one of these helmet lights. Pretty nice so far.
          www.precision-applications.com

          It's knowing that when I get up in the morning and my feet hit the floor, the Devil says, "Shit! He's awake!"

          Shortly before World War I, the German Kaiser was the guest of the Swiss government to observe military maneuvers. The Kaiser asked a Swiss militiaman: "You are 500,000 and you shoot well, but if we attack with 1,000,000 men what will you do?" The soldier replied: "We will shoot twice and go home."

          "There are so many Russians, and our country so small, where will we find room to bury them all?" - anonymous Finnish soldier

          Comment


          • #6
            Other thing I was curious about is the output on the IR side, effective range???

            Shep, what version / colors of light are you using? Good/Bad sides? Hoping a few years in the field have sorted the early the breaking parts, but really wondering if that was blown out of proportion or just hey crap breaks...
            CelticRaven

            -- Poor is the country with no heroes and worse yet, is the country that forgets its heroes.

            Plan for what CAN happen, not what HAS happened.
            --CelticRaven

            The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.
            --Thomas Jefferson

            Comment


            • #7
              Hi CR;

              We still like them, have not broken any yet, we wear them on our vests seem to not mount well on patrol caps lol IR range is about equal to a one 123 battery fixed LED light, good for navigation and map reading. It works great in tunnels where there is no light The white light has three levels and is better for map reading than the red or blues because it will not change colors or wash them out.

              Take care, my friend...Jim
              "A FAMILY THAT STANDS TOGETHER AND FIGHTS TOGETHER STAYS TOGETHER" The combined Dutch Family...


              "But I've a rendezvous with Death, at midnight in some flaming town, when spring trips north again this year, and I to my pledge word am true, I shall not fail that rendezvous"

              Alan Seeger, KIA Belloy-en-Santerre 4 July 1916, Legion Entrangere, American poet.


              Comment


              • #8
                I've got 2. Both are white/red/IR. Both work great for low light. Use them on ops at work. IR can be seen with NVG's at 100yrds fairly easy. Haven't had the opportunity to try farther.
                In the Jungle, On the hunt, I am The Ghost in the Darkness

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