Roughly 6 weeks ago (at time of posting), Elzetta was nice enough to provide us with a ZFL-M60 light for review. In this time, I've had a chance to beat on it in a way that would make most of you proud, and its held up without any problem.
Lets take a look at what it does, how it runs, and how well it does its job.
Elzetta has chosen to use the well known Malkoff based lighting system rather than to go with a standard reflector setup. This gives a light that has a much more gradual falloff to my eye, and works well for Law Enforcement duties both as a handheld and weapon mounted light.
While I can not base this on hard facts, I do feel that this style of lighting may go some way in preventing the tunnel vision that LE and MIL go through in high stress situations. We are all familiar with the work of Doctor Enoka, and his information. Most of us were taught (or teach) this in the Law Enforcement Academy. I would imagine that gradual falloff of lighting would make it easier in multiple threats situations as well.
Please understand that Dr Enoka is talking about high stress and the human body creating tunnel vision based off physical responses, and that is not what I am eluding to. My thoughts are based more on the idea that a hot spot of light with sharp falloff will encourage an individual to fixate more sharply on that which is easily identifiable. The lesser falloff should prevent that to a certain degree, and I found that in shooting during night fire, I was quicker on multiple targets as those targets were more identifiable using peripheral vision. This is a small sampling, and nothing scientific, but I think this may be the future of lighting devices.
For weapon work, I used the Daniel Defense light mount. At the time of this testing I was unaware of the rail mounted Elzetta light mounts, or I would have requested one for testing purposes.
I'm not sure that this light is officially rated as a weapon light, but it does the job, and does it well. The light pattern is outstanding when working outside, and I imagine it would be fantastic on a long gun at night also, but my time using it attached to a M16 was relegated to outside live fire only. You can see the toothed face which would be nice for pressure points.
After 500+ rounds using the KAC triple tap brake with the light directly next to the brake, the flashlight had taken quite a beating. The 10.5" barrel in combination with the brake puts out a bit of blast, and the light head as well as lens were beat up and covered with funk. When we came back inside from shooting, I put the light in the solvent dunk tank, grabbed a toothbrush, and gave it a quick scrub, then wiped the lens with a rag and went back out to shoot again. The below image shows the light after it was cleaned again at the end of the night.
I'll point out that I do not think for a minute that this light was designed for a solvent dunk tank, but it speaks volumes about how well the Elzetta ZFL-M60 held up.
One of the features of this light that I did not use often, or take advantage of as a weapon light is the ability to use the tail cap as a high/ low device. With the tail cap turned fully clockwise, you get the full 235 lumen output. By rotating the tail cap a quarter turn counterclockwise, you switch over to 15 lumens. While I do feel this feature is important, I used it primarily mounted to a weapon, and at other times where I needed a full power light source. For use inside vehicles, the lower light capability is important.
Below are the 4 main sub-assemblies of the Elzetta ZFL-M60. The tail cap/ switch, Malkoff M-60 light unit, body, and bezal/ head are clearly visible. What is more difficult to see in these pictures is the level of quality that is machined into this light. The machine work is outstanding, as is the finish. The light came to me looking like it should be packaged and wrapped as an expensive gift instead of the simple bubble pack plastic piece.
Even with multiple impacts to the light through strikes into a tree, the constant impact of being mounted to a weapon next to the KAC triple tap brake on full auto firing, and the abuse of the solvent tank, this light has remained unaffected.
I'll conclude my portion of the Elzetta ZFL-M60 flashlight review by saying that it is a well made piece of equipment that performs as needed, and without excuses. From here, the light will get passed off to another reviewer for use as an every day carry flashlight, and he will be able to post his thoughts on that angle after he has time with it. I struggle to find any negatives on this one, but if I were to find a downside, I would be that I like a switch that is recessed a tiny bit more, but I'm grasping for things when I write that. We are talking about a very well made piece of equipment, and I'm mentioning personal preference, not operational issues.
Would I go into the field as a Police Officer with this? Yes, and if I were still Military, I would carry it with me then as well.
Lets see what the next reviewer comes up with as it goes into daily carry.