Some might consider me cheap for recommending such an inexpensive weapon light. I may be cheap but the AIM Sports weapon light sure doesn’t seem to be. Rather than cheap, I prefer instead to think of myself as thrifty. I am always trying to get the highest quality at a given price point. I have on several occasions set my mind to buying a more expensive weapon light, every time though I have found a reason not to see it through. The last such time, my indecision lasted the length of a great sale and I finally waited to long. No regrets. The fact is that the usefulness of a weapon light is very limited for my purposes. I don’t go to the range at night, I don’t (and can’t) carry so I don’t find myself in a variety environments where a light would be useful. The only real point of a weapon light is home defense. Now some may immediately make the excellent point that there is no better reason to buy a more expensive and presumably better quality weapon light. Hard to argue against that logic which is why I’ve struggled at times with not spending that extra money. That’s the crux of the problem though: money. Guns are expensive, ammo is expensive, accessories are expensive. I don’t have an unlimited budget. Moreover I have more than one firearm for home defense. Undoubtedly, I will at some point have some spare cash on hand and buy a more expensive weapon light, but in the meantime I’m feeling pretty good about the AIM weapon light. Here are its basic features:
- Quick Detach Mount Fits Weaver / Picatinny Rails
- Solid Aluminum Body
- Weight: 2.5 Ounces, Length: 2-5/8″, Height: 1-5/8″, Body Width: 1″, Total Width 1-1/2″
- Output: Approx 150 lumens
- BATTERY: (1) CR2
I bought the Tactical 150 Lumen LED Flashlight several years ago for $26.99 from Amazon. Today you can get the same light for $28.95. Compare that to an entry level Streamlight which goes for $125 or a Surefire that goes for several hundred dollars. Both the Streamlights and the Surefires of course have outstanding reputations for quality and reliability. In fact, I own several Streamlight flashlights that I like very much. They are outstanding in every way and I often wonder why Streamlight won’t make a more economical weapon light. The four Streamlight flashlights I own, two stylus penlights and two flashlights, cost less than $75 combined. If I was in the military and being deployed into a hostile environment, or carrying a firearm on a daily basis, I would invest in a higher quality light without pause.
I bought the AIM Tactical flashlight more than three years ago and for most of that time it sat in the draw of my bedside table. I used it periodically just as a flashlight and found it reliable and plenty bright enough. In that time I changed the battery just once. More recently when considering options for weapon lights I decided that I needed to put the AIM light through its paces if I was going to consider using it on a gun for home defense. I spent the next month or so rotating it onto every handgun I owned (that has a rail anyway). During that time I subjected it to 500 rounds of live fire to test its reliability. The quick detach mount works very well and although the light can exhibit some wobble depending on the rail, it remained firmly and securely in place during all live fire. In the spirit of full disclosure I only tested this light on 9mm handguns. Larger caliber handguns as well as rifle calibers could conceivably be harder on the light. I don’t however have any reason to believe that the light wouldn’t work just as well. This version of the AIM tactical light has only a single mode of operation activated by way of a push button on the bottom of the light. It is easy to manipulate and find in the dark and gives positive tactile feedback. It does however necessitate changing your grip on your handgun to operate. It would not be a good choice for someone looking for a light that could be used intermittently. So is it bright enough? 150 lumens may not sound like a lot, especially when we routinely see flashlights advertised these days with 300, 500, even 800 lumens. Keep in mind though that an old school Maglite running off 3 D-Cell batteries puts out only 165 lumens. The AIM Tactical 150 Lumen LED Flashlight may not blind an intruder but it will definitely light up a room and your target.
I think so highly of the AIM light that I recently picked up a more powerful 330 lumen version. For all intents and purposes it’s the same light with the same pros and cons. It does however include a strobe mode if that’s something that interest you, and of course a more powerful beam. I got it from OpticsPlanet for a very reasonable $34.99. I wholeheartedly recommend the AIM Tactical 150 Lumen LED Flashlight as a budget option for a weapon light. For my purposes it is plenty adequate.
Categories: Firearm & Gear Reviews