FL1R Micro Headlamp
By Dr. Jim and Mary
we first saw this unit, we thought: “A cute little
after checking it out and thinking about the possible uses, we
changed our minds. This is no toy, it is a compact, serious piece of
equipment that should be in every person's kit.
threw us off was the reflective head strap. Why make a mini-headlamp
when there are several outstanding high-lumen ones available: COAST
HL8R and FL85, for example. Then we saw the clip for your hat,
pocket or coat. Ah, remove the head strap, clamp on the clip and you
have a powerful unit for a multitude of uses. In your tent at night,
when you need a reasonable amount of light to locate your glasses. In
a hunting blind when you don't want a bright light scaring the
critters, but you need some illumination to turn up the heat or find
something you dropped. The list goes on and on. Situations where you
need light, but not so intense that it is blinding and not so large
as to be cumbersome or in the way.
readers should be aware that there are quite a few small headlamps
for sale in the “big box” stores, frequently next
check-out lane. Their price is low and it's matched by their lack of
quality. As such, caveat emptor for the junk.
there are so many mini-junk headlamps on the market, we should
address the characteristics which set the Coast FL1R Micro-Headlamp
apart from all the others. First of all, it is powered by an embedded
COAST Zithion™ battery pack and includes a USB cable which
recharging from standard outlets, computer ports, and portable
has a wide angle flood beam of 300 lumens as well as a red beam to
prevent or reduce night blindness. And, importantly, there is a
“power lock-out” which prevents the unit from
turning on when in your pocket or backpack. To lock the FL1R, press
and hold the power button for 5 seconds.
unlock, repeat the previous procedure, pressing and holding the power
button for 5 seconds. The cheap big box units do not have these
unit is as tough as it is unique. It is rated at IP54 which
translates to dust/dirt resistance and storm proof. And, it has been
tested and rated to ANSI/FL1 standards (withstanding a 1-meter drop
on a hard surface). It should be no surprise that this unit carries a
specifications for light output are as follows:
Output: 120 lumens (low)
Distance: 26 meters
3 hours & 45 minutes
Output: 300 lumens (high)
Distance: 34 m
1 hour & 30 minutes
Button: Also serves as a battery life indicator. While the FL1R is
charging the power button will flash red, when fully charged the power
button will turn solid green.
are still trying to figure out how they can sell this unit for only
$34.99. At that price, one can afford to buy two, just in case.