SHOT Day 4- Elzetta Design


January 24, 2011, 09:41 AM
The SHOT show is a very busy place, and it is literally impossible to cover everything there without a small army of reporters. I met Dave Barnett of Elzetta Design on my flight out of Vegas, and he demonstrated a product that I had not had time to see during the show itself.

Anyone who spends any time around me knows that I love lights. My quality light purchase began years ago with Pelicans and Photons, and has continued. I have used very powerful lights while working security, and even while doing base defense in Afghanistan, where my incredibly powerful Black Bear let me spot small animals several hundred meters away, through dust and precipitation. Good light options have increased exponentially in the past few years, but many lights suffer from at least one of two problems:
o fragility
o over-complication

The light Dave showed me was a 2-cell 123 size, a common shape that's big enough for most people to manipulate well, but small enough to be reasonably conveniently carried. I appreciate the multiple light levels now available on many of the current LEDs, but I hate, hate, hate complication. I want a light that is simple and intuitive to use, even under physical and mental stress.

Well, the Elzetta does offer multiple light levels, but does it in a simple and intuitive way. The Elzetta has the "press on" tailcap common to most good tactical lights, but the tailcap has a twist ring that adjusts the light level from a very useful 15 lumens all the way up to 235! When the light is powered on, it is at the last setting before power down. I believe this is the best combination of simplicity and versatility I have seen in a light.

As a light geek, I have bought many different types of lights over the years. I have also broken and had fail many lights over the years, from cheap but powerful PRC-made units to Fenixes, Streamlights and SureFires. The Elzetta has a 1/2" thick acrylic lens protecting the potted LED bulb, and a sturdy body. Here is video demonstrating the toughness of the unit:

Elzetta SHOT 2011 (

I really like what I was able to see of the Elzetta, and I also greatly appreciate that the 2-cell can use rechargeable 123s. Dave assures me that he will be able to provide an Elzetta at some point in the future for a complete review.

Another product I very much like from Elzetta is an economical M16/AR15 light mount ( It quickly mounts to the front sight/gas block, and allows a 2-cell light to be removed for hand-held use.

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January 24, 2011, 09:56 PM
I should be able to review one of these in the next two months. I'm not going to hit it with a hammer, but I have a complete battery of tests planned. :evil:

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