Having a light you can charge by USB port lightens the load on your 12V outlets.
Photo credit: ASP Inc.
Let’s take a look at an innovative, rechargeable flashlight from the ever present ASP. I first saw this light at the Warrior Expo East 2012. It’s called the USB Triad. Most people in today’s tech savvy world think of a computer port when they think of USB’s. It means the same thing in relation to the ASP Triad. No, the Triad does not have a built in flash drive. Instead, like your phone and MP3 player, one way you can charge the Triad is by plugging it in to your computers USB port. There are other methods also which I will get in to later.
The Triad is a 6” long compact flashlight with a crisp and blinding 300 Lumens being put out by a thermally controlled LED. The central beam is intense and the side lobes of the beam provide a nice halo for situations where you don’t want to hit something with the full power of the light. The light has a hard anodized, satin black finish. I have noticed over the months that I have been using the Triad that the finish has not worn off the bezel yet while using the ASP TLC scabbard. The barrel of the Triad will have a familiar feel to those of you that have carried the ASP Expandable Batons. It’s a foamed vinyl grip that protects your hand against grabbing a cold flashlight in the winter or from the heat which is a result of the high output LED.
Most people have the same questions when it comes to high output flashlights. How do I feed this light and not go broke in the process? As I mentioned earlier, this is a rechargeable light but, it’s dual fuel so to speak. The supplied rechargeable batteries last for about two hours but, what if you’re on an extended operation and can’t plug it in? Take out the rechargeable Lithium-Ion battery and switch over to two CR123A, 3 volt lithium batteries. Then you’re back in business. Once you get back from your extended operation, you have several methods available to you for recharging. Take out the CR123A’s because you can’t recharge those. Put the lithium-ion rechargeable battery back in and unscrew the bezel of the light. This will expose a micro-USB port on the barrel of the light. The supplied USB cable can charge the light using your Mobile Data Terminal, install the cigarette plug adapter or the wall charger adaptor. You’ll know the light is fully charged when the indicator light goes from blinking red to solid green. As I know is the case in my agency vehicle, the cigarette plugs are occupied by other gadgets. Being able to plug in to the USB port on the Toughbook is handy.
You should know that this light has an impressive standby time. I did not charge the light for over a month and left it in my agency vehicle. Several of those nights dropped below the freezing point. When I went to use it, it was almost as bright as a full charge. To keep all this stuff organized so you don’t lose it, ASP includes a zip up nylon storage pouch that also has a belt clip that can be attached to the light if you’re trying to go with a low profile. The storage pouch is just that, it can not be attached you a belt or MOLLE webbing.
For attachment to the belt or MOLLE webbing, ASP has their Triad TLC rotating scabbard. TLC stands for Tactical Light Case. It fits gun belts up to 2.5” and has movable/removable shims for thinner belts. Remove the shims and it will attach directly to MOLLE webbing. I’ve been wearing mine on my plate carrier and it is very solid. It does not wobble around.
The three position thumb activated switch is dual function. In the center position, the activation button is locked out to prevent an unintentional discharge. Turn the switch one click clockwise and the activation button gives you the momentary on and with a bit of extra pressure, constant on. Press the button again and it turns off. Rotate the switch counter-clockwise one click past center and the switch provides momentary activation only. The switch circuit inside has two contacts in case one were to fail giving you have a built in back up to make sure your light works.
Take a look at this video produced by ASP and visit the ASP webpage at: asp-usa.com
Search your favorite on-line retailers and you’ll be able to get your USB Triad for around $105.