Quantcast

Light Or No Light On A Home Defense Pistol?

Discussion in 'Strategies, Tactics, and Training' started by peeplwtchr, Nov 11, 2020.

  1. Old Dog

    Old Dog Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2004
    Messages:
    7,524
    Location:
    Back on Puget Sound
    Being as my plan -- should I ever need to pick up one of my home defense firearms -- is to have a phone in one hand, my answer is an emphatic YES! I can access my WML with a fingertip, but I have only two hands. Nobody is gonna be in my home but me or the wife, we'll be together, and we have a plan ...
    HD2.jpg
     
    SharpDog likes this.
  2. stevebla

    stevebla Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2015
    Messages:
    73
    Location:
    Peoples Republic of California
    I just put a light laser combination on my night stand gun. Should of done it years ago. There if you need or want it.
     
    Talia and SharpDog like this.
  3. theotherwaldo

    theotherwaldo Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    Messages:
    4,311
    Location:
    In the Wild Horse Desert of Texas
    I have installed solar powered lights around the periphery of my property and a sodium streetlight that covers the back of the house, the driveways and the carports.
    I am in the process of installing a small solar powered light set in the middle of the house for emergency lights that stay on all night,
    I have small, separate solar power systems in each bedroom that are controlled by switches on each light.
    I learned my lesson in South Central Los Angeles. Carrying a flashlight just makes you a better target.
    I do have an internal laser in my bedside gun but I only turn it on if I can't see the sights.

    Never point your gun at anything that you are not willing to destroy.
     
  4. Jeff White

    Jeff White Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    29,555
    Location:
    Alma Illinois
    Trunk Monkey likes this.
  5. usp9

    usp9 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2005
    Messages:
    3,910
    Location:
    Bowling Green, Va
    The question was light or no light on a handgun used around your home. I said no because my house is equipped with lights already, inside and out, as most homes are. I said no because I'd rather not have to point my gun at anything just to see what it is. People may be up anytime of the day or night. I've investigated many a "bump in the night", though none with just a small flashlight. All looked into with as much light as possible.

    If I'm "riding to the sound of the guns", (whatever that means), it wouldn't be with a handgun and a tiny flashlight. If I should ever encounter an intruder in my home I'd much prefer to have the lights on, and my handgun with it's laser on too. (a Beretts 92fs on one side of the house and a HK USP on the other). No sneaking around trying to surprise an intruder for me; lights, noise and announcing "I'm armed and the cops are on the way".
     
  6. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2008
    Messages:
    12,168
  7. X62503

    X62503 Member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2019
    Messages:
    108
    Location:
    Vermont, U.S.A.
    I am another for pistol ≠ flashlight. My bedside combo using the Harries method is Glock 21 and a Malkoff M61 light, which replaced a 3-D cell Maglite.
     
  8. Trunk Monkey

    Trunk Monkey member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2011
    Messages:
    4,120
    Location:
    Colorado
    Power goes out. True story bro.

    If your home is set up so you can turn on your lights remotely that's probably not a bad idea but if you're stopping as you enter each room to turn them on that's BEGGING for an ambush.


    Most WML are bright enough that the spill will light up the entire room.

    Of all the things that I have to do as a part of my job the thing that I hate the most is clearing buildings. I. HATE. IT. I ABSO-*******- LOUTELY. HATE. IT. Every time I have to do it I want to piss my pants. There is nothing worse then walking around a city building in the middle of the night checking doors and reaching for one that's supposed to be locked and it isn't. If I had any other option I wouldn't be investigating "Bumps in the night" in my home. I'd hole up in the bedroom and call out "I'm calling the cops GT* out of here!"




    One of the biggest lessons I have learned from dealing with crackheads is generally they're not intimidated in the least by the fact that you're armed. I've said this before but I have lost count of how many times I've had some crackhead look at me and DARE me to shoot them.

    I remember watching a documentary on HBO about people who have had to kill people. (I was a kid when I watched it. I barely remember it but I'm certain that it was anti-gun tripe) the thing that stood out in my mind the most was the homeowner that confronted an intruder in his living room in the middle of the night.

    They actually showed the incident on home security video. According to the homeowner he encountered the guy in his living room investigating a "Bump in the night" while armed with a shotgun. The homeowner said as soon as the burglar saw the gun he bucked up and started advancing on the homeowner DARING him to shoot.

    You had better be prepared for when the bad guy doesn't piss his pants and run screaming like a little girl into the night at the sight of your Mighty Boomstick.
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2020
  9. TheWarhammer

    TheWarhammer Member

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2008
    Messages:
    299
    Location:
    North Texas
    FWIW, here's a pic of the tiny little WML/Laser mounted on my .45. It's small enough to use in a IWB holster with no problems. Most pistol WMLs are bigger and more powerful.

    49862899091_e2bbf4405a_z.jpg

    Here's how much light that tiny unit puts out. It will easily light up a scene well enough to ID a target without pointing directly at the target.

    49866268346_28c28ed900_z.jpg

    The WMLs on my shotgun and rifle are orders of magnitude more powerful and can certainly be used to ID targets while keeping the muzzle pointed off target.
     
    Old Dog, Phaedrus/69 and SharpDog like this.
  10. Rexster

    Rexster Member

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2007
    Messages:
    3,527
    Location:
    SE Texas
    I searched MANY structures, and built-up areas, in 33+ years of big-city police patrol. (This does not make me an expert.) Some thoughts:

    For those who believe that anyone inside your residence can ONLY an intruder, well, during one foot chase, the criminal smashed THROUGH a glass exterior door, into an occupied residence, and duty compelled me to remain right behind him. The couple, inside the home, were QUITE surprised to see this happening. Fortunately, there was enough lighting for them to understand what was happening. I was too close, on his tail, for the criminal to try grabbing a hostage, and, cornered/trapped, he disappeared under a dog-pile of officers.

    A hand-held light is vital. A spare hand-held light is a very desirable option. A WML is somewhere farther down the list.

    In a dynamic encounter, where I cannot be sure whether or not the enemy might be behind me, which includes my flanks, tritium sights can be a liability. This is not theory; the fresh green glowing vials, in my rookie trainees’ sights, as I evaluated their building searches, were like Rudolph’s Red Nose, making it easy for me to track the trainees, without having to use my hand-held white light. (I would not want to back-light a fellow officer, for obvious tactical reasons.) Now, if one were to remove me from that equation, at that moment in time, and insert an armed felon, well, we see the liability that tritium sights present.

    So, I believe that a WML is more important than tritium inserts in the weapon’s sights. Both are optional, and, if I am hunting bad guys, in a 360-degree-threat environment, I would rather that my weapon’s sights not glow. Again, if I am hunting bad guys, in a 360-degree-threat environment, I would rather that my weapon’s sights NOT glow.

    More than anything else, tritium sights helped my aging eyes “game” quals, and one or two “tactical” shooting exercises, because I could align the glowing dots, rather than have to focus sharply on the outline of the sights. In real-life encounters, it was having a white light that mattered.

    In most circumstances that justified pointing a firearm at a person, I could see him, and he could see me. A WML would not be “giving away” my position, at these times, but might well be what would enable me to see his hands well enough to know whether he presented a deadly threat. (In actual practice, during most of my career, I was not allowed to use WMLs on any duty or defensive firearms, on or off the clock. When more than a handful of officers, which included myself, started using WMLs, the command staff banned them, pending “study.” After years of “study,” WML protocols were developed, then studied by city legal, which took more time. Finally, training classes were developed, to certify officers to use WMLs. I never played golf with right folks, or learned the secret handshake, or whatever, so finished my career with my firearms “slick;” no WMLs, lasers, or optics.)

    WML on my home-defense firearm? Short version: Yes, of course. (Longer version may follow. Or, not, as others may well have covered it thoroughly.)
     
    Talia, SharpDog, JTHunter and 4 others like this.
  11. magyars4

    magyars4 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2002
    Messages:
    358
    Location:
    Indiana
    No light on mine. Now my 870 sports a light...but not my handguns
     
  12. waterhouse

    waterhouse Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    5,439
    Location:
    Round Rock, TX
    Every gun I plan on using for self defense has a light. Also several handheld lights available. 9448F001-40C9-40F2-9A3E-3D00E505C9EF.jpeg
     
  13. Sebastian the Ibis
    • Contributing Member

    Sebastian the Ibis Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    Messages:
    2,060
    Location:
    "The Gunshine State"
    Yes.

    But, you don’t necessarily want to turn it on. In a home defense situation, you should know the area. It’s very hard to see into dark spaces from light spaces. Go through your home at various times considering the lighting and what you can see and what you cant. Also modern lights are so powerful they can be disorienting when reflected off walls — something else to check for yourself.
     
    SharpDog likes this.
  14. Meeks36

    Meeks36 Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2019
    Messages:
    1,028
    Location:
    Georgia
    Now weapon mounted light in this house. I keep multiple flashlight's. Two on nightstand. Both my side and wife's.
     
  15. herrwalther

    herrwalther Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2013
    Messages:
    5,869
    Yes. Both of my carry weapons have lights, a Streamlight TLR-7A on one and Viridian C5L on the other. My EDC hand flashlight sits on the nightstand at night as well as a backup light. My HD shotgun and rifle both have lights on them. Even my watch has a small light on it. Which is great for walking to the kitchen and not stepping on a 10 week old puppy. I have taken enough low light and night shooting classes to know how to use them effectively when rounds need to be exchanged.
     
    SharpDog likes this.
  16. DeepSouth

    DeepSouth Member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2009
    Messages:
    3,718
    Location:
    Heart of Dixie
    I can’t hit a target I can’t see, I go light.

    Different strokes for different folks though, I do understand the arguments against them.
     
    SharpDog and Robbins290 like this.
  17. shafter

    shafter Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2011
    Messages:
    1,135
    As a firearms instructor for law enforcement, everyone in my dept is required to qualify in low light conditions with their handheld light and then again with their WML. The scores with the WML are significantly higher than those with a handheld light. Once they try them no one wants to give them up.
     
    Talia, FL-NC, MrChicken and 1 other person like this.
  18. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2008
    Messages:
    12,168
    That's a pretty telling comment.
     
    SharpDog likes this.
  19. Jeff White

    Jeff White Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    29,555
    Location:
    Alma Illinois
    A WML doesn't compromise your grip. The important thing to remember if you use either a handheld light or a WML is to seek out training and then practice. Practice shouldn't be limited to shooting, but should include how to use the light in the most effect way.
     
    Talia, FL-NC, Old Dog and 1 other person like this.
  20. Hangingrock

    Hangingrock Member

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2010
    Messages:
    2,345
    Location:
    NC
    Yes the subject is weapon mounted lights but I wonder why for their home residence that people don't have more secure enterpionts, windows and a master power switch for lighting????
     
    Trunk Monkey likes this.
  21. Driftertank

    Driftertank Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2010
    Messages:
    776
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    I keep a small stand-alone flashlight by me when I'm asleep. At home, travelling, doesn't matter. I have yet to have anyone object to me keeping it handy anywhere. The same cannot be said of my firearms. If i hear a strange noise, i grab that light. I also use it to avoid tripping over furniture, and for aim assist when using the restroom, because missing the bowl may make my wife kill me in my sleep, too.

    I also have a big Great Dane who would go absolutely apes*** if someone who didn't belong in my house found their way in.

    In the case of that, or other sound of forced entry, i have a pistol with a small, 600 lumen QD weaponlight in arms reach at home.

    I also have said for years that a pistol is just there to get you to a rifle. On that note, in my safe is my ranch rifle, a semiauto carbine with an 800 lumen light and an LPVO. If i suspect the issue is outside, i reckon i take the time to grab that.

    Also have CCTV i can check for clues to what's going on, time permitting.

    I have some luxuries, though. I live on a rural 10 acres with horse pastures surrounding the house. Nobody's likely to innocently find themselves in or around my house by happenstance, and anyone who WOULD have reason to be here at night knows better than to just show up unannounced.
     
  22. MrChicken

    MrChicken Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2004
    Messages:
    168
    Location:
    Memphis TN
    IMHO, night sights are great for finding your pistol in the dark. :)
    A WML is great for seeing your target and your sights. It even works with a red dot.

    TG also says that your house should have enough light to identify a target when you wake up from sleeping, nightlights, lights on cable boxes, coffee makers, etc..

    The WML goes on as the pistol comes up and you have time to not shoot if you are mistaken in your initial threat assessment.

    I ran a test with a bunch of action pistol shooters at our club some years ago with more than a dozen participants.
    Light in their eyes, most shot around the light source with most getting good hits. Not many complete misses.
    Strobe light in their eyes, all got good hits on target. Most said the strobe made it easier as the time the light was off was less pain in their eyes.
    The same flashlight was used in both tests.
    Two ways to defeat a light shining at you, a more powerful light and a ball cap.
    Brightest light wins and you tip the brim of the hat down to block the light like a sun visor in your car.
    *this was a few years ago and lights have gotten much brighter so I can't say for sure all of that would remain the same.
    **nobody shot the flashlight

    Having run many low light stages at our club matches, there is no doubt that people shoot faster and better with a WML.
    BTW, clean burning ammo is important. Put a cloud of powder smoke in front of your light and all you'll see is your light.
     
    SharpDog and hso like this.
  23. Kevin Rohrer

    Kevin Rohrer Member

    Joined:
    May 29, 2010
    Messages:
    1,317
    Location:
    Medina, Ohio USA
    My primary home defense weapon is a rifle. And no, no light on either. Why not? Not needed.
     
  24. browningguy

    browningguy Member

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2004
    Messages:
    4,725
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    All of my home defense pistols, pistol caliber carbines, AR 15's and HK USC carbine have lights mounted. My hunting rifles and target guns don't .
     
    FL-NC, Phaedrus/69 and SharpDog like this.
  25. FL-NC

    FL-NC Member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2016
    Messages:
    6,285
    Location:
    Fl panhandle
    Have you ever tried to use it effectively and safely in the dark?
     
    SharpDog likes this.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice