The Olight S1R Baton is Compact, Efficient, Bright
Flashlights & EDC
Flashlights are a fairly common component of an ordinary EDC package. Statistically speaking, you’re more likely to use your knife and your flashlight about a gajillion times (real statistics, obviously) than your firearm. A gun is more like life insurance than a common necessity for most folks. Knives and flashlights, on the other hand, can be used for so many ordinary tasks and help you through so many ordinary situations that it makes total sense for almost anyone to carry them around. If you’re looking for a solid EDC folder that won’t break the bank, see our review of the OKC RAT II. This review is about a light that anyone should be able to fit into their EDC rotation from a physical or a financial perspective. First, though, let’s have a look at a few situations that might require illumination.
- Sometimes It’s Dark. Actually, it’s dark every night. I found myself using my S1R the other night when walking over to a friend’s house. For some reason, the streetlights were out and I didn’t want to trip over something on uneven terrain. Simple as that. Darkness happens: power outages, rummaging under a car seat at night, etc.
- Facebook, Snapchat, & Tinder or whatever you like doing on your mobile device. If you find yourself in a situation that demands light, it’s better that you not drain your primary means of communication to use it. In the case of a power outage, it’s best to keep a line open to the outside world rather than waste battery looking for your matches.
- Stay Away from Me. If you’re in the proverbial dark alley, or if you’re walking your dog at night in an area that lacks streetlights dressed in black like an idiot, a light is you friend. It says “don’t mug me because I’m prepared and I can blind you,” or “don’t hit me with your car.” Obviously I’m not saying that a flashlight is an extremely powerful threat deterrent, but it’s most likely helpful. It’s definitely helpful in a visibility fight against bad drivers.
Elements to Consider: Choosing a Light
Start with your purpose. High speed guys: this isn’t a weapon light designed to permanently blind UBL’s ghost. Moving on: my purpose is basic illumination. I want to see where I’m going in the dark long enough to get to light or to find what I’m looking for in a potentially difficult situation. Another element to consider is practicality- we can’t all shove a maglight down our pants and go galloping off to an office job like an asshole. For me, compact was key. Beyond size and purpose, consider:
Power Source: What kind of battery should you look for? Personally, I’m a fan of rechargeable batteries. Lithium and NiMH are solid choices, but if you don;t mind having to replace them occasionally, there are tons of AAA and AA options to choose from. The S1R runs on 550mAh rechargeable lithium ion RCR123. The RCR123 has a “high discharge rate.”In battery speak, we’re considering the rate at which a power source can discharge relative to its maximum capacity. The RCR123 discharges 100 Amps per hour, giving it a discharge rate of 5C: it will deplete in 5 hours running at 100 Amps per hour, or will totally deplete in 15 days on low settings. The practical meaning for S1R users is that this little light can run at 900 lumens. I love the fact that the S1R is rechargeable and has solid battery life for EDC applications.
Amount of Light Emitted: The lumen is the most common measurement for “the amount of light emitted per second in a unit solid angle of one steradian from a uniform source of one candela.” In people talk, we’re referring to “brightness.” Don’t confuse wattage with lumens. The S1R’s 900 potential lumens is pretty damn bright, and it can also output a measly 0.5 if need be. This flexibility and potential output is awesome in a $60 light.
Throw: How far will the beam shed light on an object? The S1R can illuminate objects up to 145 meters away. That’s solid throw for such a tiny light.
Size: I know people who carry a full size 1911, fixed blade, and a dildo-sized flashlight. I’m not that guy. I like to wear clothes that fit me pretty well, so marrying that up to my EDC and keeping things practical is always a focus. I carry a Glock 43 IWB, one of my may folders, and the S1R. The pocket clip is a nice little feature as well. It’s also light- just 1.27 oz.
Durability: EDC shit should not be prone to breaking. Look for waterproof and drop-test rated lights. The S1R holds an IPX8 waterproof designation, meaning that it’s protected against submersion. It’s also drop-proof up to 1.5 meters according to the manufacturer, and according to me throwing it in the air and letting it fall on asphalt a few times.
Red Hatchet Outdoors Says…
I like this thing. There are a few features that I find really useful. First, the charging dock: I charge it up every night, and I rest easy knowing that I’ll be set for the next day and that I have a light on my nightstand (and a weaponlight on my firearm). The pocket clip and multiple light modes (lumen, strobe, & timer controls) are convenience factors that I’m a big fan of. Fans of the “icepick” flashlight grip may want to opt for a longer light. The S1R Baton does not really work effectively like that because of how small it is. It does grip nicely though, thanks to the knurled texture on the tube. It’s durable as well, which is a primary factor for any EDC consideration. If you’re looking for an EDC light that won’t break the bank and fits into a compact carry setup, give this one some consideration. Check out the S1R here.