Fighters: Pistol Lights & Mounts

What do you use?

What did you learn NOT to use?

How did you mount it?

How much battery life?

Where can I get that stuff?


29 thoughts on “Fighters: Pistol Lights & Mounts”

  1. I’ve had a streamlight TLR-1 on my Glock 34 for 9 years now. We don’t get to do a lot of night shooting, but I test it every morning as part of my routine. Still on the original battery (about to order a couple spares, given likely proximity to interesting times). It’s plenty bright, doesn’t wash too much out when clearing houses (again, always during the day for me). It’s a rock solid piece of equipment, IMO.

    1. I’ve had a TLR-1 since 2006. It’s been on two deployments and still going strong. Haven’t killed it yet!
      I replace all my batteries as needed, and on 1 JAN.

      1. I give the third nod to the TLR-1. It’s been on every gun I have. Fantastic for the price.

    1. I have the Olight PL-2 Mini Valkyrie mounted on a S&W SD9VE. Before the gear queers start in, I had a Glock with a Surefire; sold it and bought 2 SD9VEs with Olights and had money left over for ammo. I have never regretted the decision. The S&Ws – with Apex trigger and M-Carbo springs – are better pistols than the Glock, period. And I love Surefires, but at 4x the cost of the Olights? Nope.
      …ammo, ammo, ammo. An added bonus is the Smith and Wessons eat every type of ammo – and in a shit ton of rounds downrange, have never hiccuped. I hesitate to share too much about the SDs – I got the SD40VE for my youngest son – because I don’t want to see the price hike due to popularity, ha ha.
      As always, YMMV; but there you go.

  2. Streamlight TLR-VIR II

    While I have a decided preference for Surefire the Streamlight pistol lights haven’t failed me yet and as far as I can tell it’s the cheapest option for dual use, white light/IR. The only thing I’m really not happy with is the lack of positive click adjustments for the laser. I’m not a fan of the friction adjustments but I suspect it’ll be fine. Can’t really comment on the battery life. I never paid much attention. I buy the batteries at least 100 at a time.

  3. Glock 34, surefire light, leupold Pro red dot. Building a glock 19 with the same. Guys in my circle are modding their 19s, to mimick the 1911 grip, which seems to make presentation as a stock pistol 100% of the time.

    Initially was concerned about changing my “Winning” 50 year style I.E. Pick up the front sight, quickly learned that on this 34, picking up the front sight, IS picking up the red dot.

    Buppert gets the credit for my finally going to lights and a red dot. Think most are shooting the RMR red dots.

    The surefire light need no reviews, we all know what the units do.


      1. Years ago (97-98-ish?) we T&E’d the Surefire pistol light on our Glocks, they needed an adaptor to keep from pinching the frame, so we didn’t go with them. I’m confident thy have fixed this by now.

        I run the Streamlight TLR-1s. The “s” is for strobe. When you have the light on, moving through a structure, the target can see/tell where you are from the constant-on light, it was far away, now it’s close, etc… Running a strobe light makes it difficult for the target to tell where you are, and you can still get a good illuminated view to engage.

        I’ve also used the Streamlight M-3 and M-3x. No strobe, but good solid lights. Plastic body vs. the aluminium body. It’s also worked fine on long guns with a pressure switch on the forearm.

      2. Sure fire X300 ultra. Amazon. IF I had a complaint it would be that the Glock 34 long slide 9mm, is a long barrel, when the lights mounted, I MUST shift my support hand to push the on/off levers,

        Not an issue really, just like anything that’s a bit different. Your just learn to minipulate it so that it works tits for you.

        I’ll put the same on the 19 when its time. Eventually a 17. if time and doe allows.


  4. Streamlight TLR-1 HL and TLR-2IRW on Glocks. Both solid and strong with 123 batteries lasting quite a while. I can I.D. a coyote vs. a dog past 100 yards out here on the farm. The IR of course with NODs is a game changer. Pricey but buy once, cry once. The next I would consider is the Veridian series. VERY pricey, but having the desired laser/light/strobe option immediately out of the holster seems to be the best all around for speed. You can see how well they work in quite a few police body-cam videos.

    1. I should have put a caveat on holsters. It can take a while to find what works/fits your gun. The less common model of pistol you have, the less likely to find anything handy. For TLRs and Glocks I’ve got a couple Blackhawk Epoch holsters which are very sturdy and have good retention, but are more of a “duty-belt” type. They can’t be quickly taken off/on a belt. Another example is a Fobus GL-2 EMZ, which is a paddle that can be placed on your belt quickly, but it is just for lounging around the house or carefully walking out to check the backyard. It has a loop/snap system and is definitely not “tactical” in that you would likely brush by something out in the world/woods and immediately lose your gun. Trade-offs depending on mission.

  5. ……wasn’t sure if I really wanted a light so I purchased a cheeepe NEBO rail mount that slides on my Glock or on a rail on an AR ( if I had one) , about 10 or 12 years ago has held up great-solid used alot and been drug the shit ….still works, plenty bright , 230 ? lumen was $ 29 at the time……..I can hear you laughing at me so stop………the fucker works and ended up getting 4 for $100 ………not high speed but bright, easy on and off and a really blinding strobe. on a budget check them out

  6. INFORCE APLc on all pistols capable of light mounting. They stay where mounted, are very good in home applications, bright enough that if you point the light at someone in the dark, they will have an involuntary reaction of closing their eyes and blocking the light. Provides a great tactical advantage in the home invasion & clearing scenarios.

    Price point is very reasonable; 200 lumens; 1.5 hours continuous run time before battery change.

    1. Inforce here too on my G20, needed it for night use when in the woods/backpacking.
      Have had it about 8 yrs with no issues whatsoever.

  7. My Surefire XC1, while compact and fairly bright given its size, simply eats batteries, even if not activated at all, despite using high quality AAA lithiums. It’s still on the nightstand gun (M&P 45), which means it gets checked/changed regularly. Not sure if it’s an issue with the first gen on these or what.

    Streamlight TLR-1 HL on three(?) other guns, including a 20″ Maverick 88. These run CR123’s and run times seem quite good. Despite being physically larger than the Surefire XC1, as well as a bit more of a pain to change the battery (though it seems to need it only irregularly), I’m far more impressed with this unit. Mileages vary, surely.

    Rifle lights…Bueller? Anyone?

    1. Irritable,

      Contact Surefire re: XC1. I believe you need an RMA # from them to return your XC1. I had the same issue with my XC1. Surefire will not repair your XC1. They will simply send you the improved XC1-B. More lumens (300L). Improved switches.

      My original XC-1 would drain the battery dry in 3 weeks. My replacement B model has been on the same battery (and on the nightstand) for going on 6 months.

      Surefire will stand behind their product(s).

  8. Attend any low light training and you will quickly see the undeniable advantages of a weapon mounted light over shooting with a handheld. You can tell people that have never attended training because they say things like “I would never put a light on my weapon because I will shoot whatever I point it at”.
    Next before someone says it, yes, you should train to shoot with a handheld light also and I carry one on my rig as an immediate back up. I really like the Surefire G2X SINGLE OUTPUT ONLY. Multiple outputs is definitely something not to buy, a flashlight that you can accidentally toggle between different light settings while using the momentary on sucks big time while shooting.
    The first generation Surefire XC1 should be avoided at all costs, the controls are terrible.
    Also make sure the good quality holster companies that you trust make a holster for your weapon and light combination before you buy.
    Lastly related to this topic go get low light training and understand why night sights are a must on your firearm but under what limited conditions they are useful.

  9. I use a viridian c5 LED light/green laser combo on my Glock 21sf. It has multiple modes including light and laser, strobe light and laser, strobe laser, strobe laser and light, just laser, just light, and just strobe. It uses one cr2 battery and its activation is by index finger (left or right hand). It can also be automatically activated by using a viridian holster which turns it on to the last setting you had the moment it is unholstered. It is incredibly small and doesn’t stick out in front of the gun like those surefire large lights. Had it for about 3 years now with absolutely no problems whatsoever.

  10. I like the XDM line from Springfield.

    For lights, the TLR-2 is nice… and a version exists with IR laser.

  11. Another vote for the Olights. They do have sales from time to time. They have multiple brightness settings, strobe, temporary on and charge via USB with a magnet.

    1. Very reasonably priced product line, I’ve had 2 now. Lost my first one, VAClinic I think.
      Olight has backed their product too, burned out a 3 month old LED last fall and they sent a new flashlight immediately, with an updated LED.

  12. Glock 17s and 19s with SureFire x300s.

    Solid. No doubts or worries. Like someone said above “SureFire will back their product.”

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