What kind of pistol light?


October 16, 2003, 04:37 PM
I see a lot of the automatics pistols in magazines are coming out with a weaver rail on the bottom of the frame. What kind of light would be the best for a gun like that? I have seen the M3 and M6 by Streamlight, several of the surefires and then some lower quality mounts as well. The M6 seems like it would be the best of both worlds, with a light and a laser that can be selected individually or together.

So what are you thoughts of the usefulness of a gun mounted light or light/laser, and which one do you prefer?

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Abominable No-Man
October 16, 2003, 04:53 PM
I've tried a couple of flashlights on pistols, but I think they get in the way more than anything else. It seems to me that lasers work both ways and are more of a gimmick.

That being said, I guess a flashlight is better than a laser, although I'd rather mount a flashlight to a shotgun than a pistol. When I was in Afghanistan, I saw some infantry guys with light/laser kits mounted on their M4's and shotguns for going through the caves.


October 16, 2003, 07:39 PM
the streamlight is slick,but it is a tactical item,works great on a nitestand gun though.
hear someone entering late at night, it quickly gives you light for investigation with a flip of a switch.
works great at the range for firing practice in laser mode.
with lasers you can really see how good you are at holding your gun steady,every movement is magnified greatly.
the question is who is going to spend $250 and up for a flashlight lol.

October 16, 2003, 09:20 PM
I have an M3 that I snap onto my Vertec at night. Really lights a room up!

Texas Bob
October 16, 2003, 09:32 PM
You can pick up the M3 w/ a spare bulb at many shows for $150.00. Yes, I know that is an expensive flashlight, however as a nightstand gun when the power is off you have a weapon mounted light that it bright enough to illuminate a room by holding it at low ready. This last week I shot a "no-light" drill with many other shooters using a 6Z in their weak hands. I shot my XD9 w/ M3 attached and my time and scores sold me on the usefullness of this for a house gun.

October 16, 2003, 11:05 PM
So would the M6 with the laser be any advantage as a house gun?

October 17, 2003, 03:08 AM
I don't see the laser on the M6 as being terribly useful, either on a dedicated house gun or on a "street" carry gun. Definitely get the white-light M3, or a Sure-Fire if you want a mil-spec rugged unit, but don't waste extra $$ on the laser.

- If you turn on the light and the laser at the same time, the light MAY be so bright that it "washes out" the laser dot. Anyway, if you turn on the light, you can see the silhouette of your regular iron sights and aim with them just as well as if you were at a well-lit range(maybe even better, 'cuz you'll see them as a stark, sharp-edged silhouette, without any overhead glare).

- If you use the laser only, without the white light, you've got the aiming capability but no target-identification; the laser AIN'T bright enough to let you ID friend vs. foe reliably. If you're on a "search-and-destroy" house-clearing mission, BOTH the light AND the laser are equally as likely to give your position away UNLESS you first LEARN and then PRACTICE REGULARLY proper flashlight-assisted low-light house-clearing techniques.

- The laser will not "blind" an assailant UNLESS you shine the dot DIRECTLY into his eye(which first requires you to FIND his eyes, in the dark) - the white light WILL "blind" him even if you beam his chest, or the wall just next to his head, and you can then easily move the "sweet spot" of the beam to his eyes, 'cuz the beam has just shown you his whole upper torso.

- If you "beam" someone with the white light attached to your gun, not only can you ID friend or foe, but once the ID is confirmed as "foe," you can fire 'im up IMMEDIATELY - 'cuz you've already got the gun pointed right at him. If your assailant is squarely in the white-light's beam, you DON'T NEED the laser to "pinpoint aim" for you - if you really need to make a precise, "hostage rescue" shot, just use the nice silhouette of your iron sights that you'll see with the white light anyway.

- Yeah, the laser dot is "intimidating," but how much LESS intimidating is that blinding, retina-searing, 60 to 120 lumen white light, anyway?

The way I see it, adding the laser to the white light is just "gilding the lily."

Harold A
October 17, 2003, 06:52 AM
I purchased an M6 over the M3. I got it used at a good price.

First, you can still see the laser dot on a target with the ligh on, it is not washed out.

My reasoning is that the laser adds an extra tool and maybe an advantage in some situations so why not. If you go with the M6 be sure to practice with the laser and don't let it become a crutch. If you can't hit anything with standard sights the laser is not going to help.

I like the laser for training purposes, you would be surprised how even the slightest move of your hand is exagerated on target with the dot on it.

I think their is an intimidation effect of having a dot on someones chest. A laser might in some situations help you get a shot of from behind cover if needed.

I say go for the M6 if you can swing it. Just make sure to use it as a tool not a crutch.

October 17, 2003, 10:42 AM
I've tried a few & like the Surefire weapon lights...really good beam quality & LOTS of output :what: The donwside I've come across is finding a holster.

October 17, 2003, 05:20 PM
I have an M3, it works fine but is now sitting on my shotgun.

For pistols, prefer my Z3 and harries technique as this is more versatile for me.

I almost always carry my Z3 anyways and can use it to flash/scan areas when I am not presenting arms. A dedicated light for a pistol will always need you to be pointing the muzzle to engage light.

Dunno about lasers, seems like one more external thing to depend on, one more thing for Murphy's Law to screw with. Don't believe looking for red dot is anymore effective than looking for front sight at self defense ranges.

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