Coast POLYSTEEL 600 Flashlight
We have reviewed and tested a lot of flashlights over the years, ranging in power from 500 to 1,000 lumens. Most were good lights, although some were better than others from a durability point of view. Some of them used conventional AA, C or D cell batteries, while others used Lithium ion rechargeable batteries.
When the folks at COAST sent their new POLYSTEEL 600, we admit that our first thoughts were, "another flashlight, just like the others we have reviewed." Well, we were wrong, dead wrong. This light stands apart from all of the other flashlights that we have reviewed. Now, when we have to go out at night to check the animals and make sure that the local coyotes are not getting too close, there is a race to see who can grab the POLYSTEEL 600 first.
What makes this light so special? Its body has a stainless steel core that is wrapped with a textured nylon polymer. We have no doubt that this light would survive the toughest environment that any outdoorsman might encounter and still keep working.
It meets IPX8 (waterproof) and ANSI FL1 (drop) flashlight standards. IPX8 standard requires that the light be watertight (waterproof) at depths of three meters. ANSI FL1 standard requires that the light withstand repeated three meter drops on hard surfaces and still function. Only one other flashlight that we have tested has ever met those standards and it did not put as much light on target as the POLYSTEEL 600.
However, what really sets this light apart from all of the rest that we have tested is what the COAST folks call "Pure Beam Focusing Optic." We admit that we have no idea how that works, but we can say that their lens puts more light on your target area than flashlights rated at 800 - 1000 lumens. You can adjust the light from a broad flood beam to a tight spot beam quickly and easily. That really comes in handy when you are coming off a mountain in the dark or checking things around camp.
While the output of this flashlight is only rated at 660 lumens, it is apparent that COAST has developed the technology to focus more pure (coherent) light on target than all of the other lights that we have tested. It wouldn't surprise me if they had some laser specialists working in their lab to achieve this feat. In addition, this light only requires 4-AA batteries and you have a real winner.
Features and Specifications
Note that the MSRP is only $47.99, about half the price of its competitors. How Coast did it, we have no idea, but at this price it is a true bargain.
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