Lighting up the night.... mounting a light on an AR-15
No question... lighting up the dark can be awful darn handy at times. Especially times where bad people might be planning bad things to those you care about. Lights on weapons is not a new idea. It's been around since battery powered handheld lights happened. My dad told me stories of WWII GI's in his unit strapping Rayovac flashlights to their rifles while on sentry duty, utterly against their orders of course. Skip forward a few generations, and weapons mounted lights are all the rage with the cool kids in shooty land. Seems everything (up to and including my new coffee mug) has a picatinny rail for mounting all kinds of goodies. Even my regular carry pistol, a compact Glock G-30, has a short little rail built in.... for short little gadgets I guess. Lights mounted on pistols...... The Fat Man is not really a fan. My experience runs to a time when armed people carried flashlights on their belts, and smart ones trained in how to combine their use with a sidearm. For me, the issue with a pistol mounted light is the weapon is pointed at anything the bearer lights up. I understand, the upside to that, but the downside just worries me more than speed or convenience makes up for. I carry a very bright flashlight.... and I know how to use it.... and I DON'T have to point a weapon at someone to light them up. Considering I have brightened the lives of several people who needed it muchly, while never shooting even a single one.... that works for me.
A weapon mounted light on a long arm..... different story, at least for me. While rifles and shotguns might be leaps and bounds better as defensive weapons than pistols, pretty much universally they require TWO hands to operate correctly. Now, The Fat Man's math skills are always in question... but even he can figure out that two hands on the rifle leaves.... um.... add column A and carry the five and divide by the orbit of Venus.... um... NO hands left to work a flashlight. That could be a problem.
To answer that need, the household defensive rifle here at The Carteach Cave Of Doom (The house) just grew a new appendage. Mounted to the left side on the handguard, there's now a 300 lumin LED flashlight installed with an offset Picatinny rail gadget thingie.
In this case the mount is built for one inch body lights, and this particular Fenix flamethrower is slightly thinner.... so a few wraps of abrasive tape formed a bushing that made a tight fit which should never move. In use..... it's bloody bright, and easy to use, and takes some practice. Don't assume just having a light on your rifle makes you (To DAA) Super Ninja Night Warrior! It requires practice to move with the light, and activate it at will. Combined with the required weapons handling skills, it can get finicky.Many nights moving around the house and property are called for. All with an UNLOADED weapon to start with, at least till those two separate hand motions... 'Lighting up' and 'Firing' can be engrained into muscle memory.
For a real eye opener... swap the rifle over to your other side, righty to lefty, and try the movement again. Carteach's first time.... and 21st time... came out to be the click of a hammer falling, followed by the flashlight coming on. This could be a serious tragedy if it happened under the wrong circumstances. My own take.... I simply can't safely operate the light while carrying the rifle as a lefty. Bloody good thing to know BEFORE it all goes pear shaped.
Carteach is pleased with the addition, and recommends it. The bottom line.... for about $75, my 'house gun' now has serious after dark capabilities it never had before. I are happy with that.