Pelican 8020 M8 LED, retail $TBA (
Manufactured by Pelican Products (
Last updated 04-03-07

The Pelican M8 is a fairly large (as LED flashlights go) plastic flashlight using a 1.2 watt Luxeon LED, and powered by three C cells.

What sets this flashlight apart from the others isn't that jet black Xenoy plastic body (which makes it difficult to photograph; see above), and it isn't the three C cells that power it. It's the Recoil LED Technology™, in which the LED is placed up near the top of the bezel, aiming down at the reflector. So all of the light in the beam comes from the reflector, and not from the LED itself.


To use the M8, remove it from its package, install the batteries (see below), and then you'll be ready to go to town.

Press the red rubbery button on the barrel until it clicks and then release it to turn it on. Press and release it the same way again to turn it off.

Press the button less firmly (before it clicks) and hold it that way for as long as you need light; release the button to turn the M8 back off. This is momentary mode.

To change the batteries in your M8, unscrew and remove the tailcap, and throw it away...O WAIT, YOU'LL NEED THAT!!! So just set it aside instead. ;-)

Tip the open end of the barrel into your hand, and a black plastic battery carriage should come out. Gently shake the barrel up and down if the carriage does not slide right out. Remove the used C cells from this carriage, and dispose of or recycle them as you see fit. Insert three new C cells into the carriage, observing the polarity markings embossed into the bottom of each battery chamber. Once the carriage is full, insert it into the flashlight barrel, so the button (+) side of the topmost battery goes in first and the flat (-) negative end of the last battery in the carriage shows. Screw the tailcap back onto the flashlight barrel, and you're done.
Aren't you glad you didn't get rid of that tailcap now? ;-)

The battery carriage is designed like a tray, with an open top and enclosed bottom. So one or more of the batteries could fall out if you aren't paying attention to how you're holding the carriage.

In my opinion, this battery changing procedure is a little asinine; Pelican could have done without the battery carriage. But remember this is my 2¢, and individual results & opinions may vary.

I've since been told that the battery carriage was in response to quite a number of users installing one or more of the cells in the wrong way, and wondering why the flashlight did not work. This can actually wreck an LED flashlight, if the reverse voltage was high enough. So Pelican decided to make the M8 as "idiot proof" as possible; hence the battery carriage which has polarity markings embossed in each chamber, and only fits the flashlight one way.

Photograph of the business-end of the flashlight, showing the Recoil LED Technology™, in which the LED is mounted above the reflector, aiming down at it.

The M8 has a lightweight body made of Xenoy® plastic, and it has a polycarbonate lens and ABS plastic shroud helping to protect the lens. Try to break one of these things, and you might give out (or give up) before the flashlight does.

It is waterproof (submersible), so using it in the rain or snow isn't a problem, and if something pees on it, just take the garden hose to it and wash it off. Good as new.

Water-resistance is not stated, but I believe the M8 is submersible to at least 12", so falls into snow, slush, or shallow water should not be damaging whatsoever.

The beam is a pure white color, with no yellow, blue, purple, or "rotten camel urine green" anywhere in it. It does have a rather unusual square profile to it; this may take some getting used to if you're accustomed to circular beams from flashlights.
The very edges of the beam have a slight greenish tinge, but in my opinion, this is not objectionable in any manner. This will not figure into my final rating of this flashlight.
There is also virtually no spill light outside the main beam; if you require that, you may wish to choose another flashlight.

There is a texturised vinyl sheath over the barrel of the M8; this helps to aid in retention (the ability to hold the flashlight when your hands are cold, wet, or oily).

Beam photo at ~12".
Measures 1,420,000mcd on a Meterman LM631 light meter.
This high reading is mainly due to the narrow beam produced by this flashlight.

Spectrographic plot
Spectrometer plot of the LED in this flashlight.
Ocean Optics USB2000 Spectrometer on loan from TWO-CUBED.

Spectrographic plot
Spectrometer plot of the LED in this flashlight.
Ocean Optics USB2000 Spectrometer on loan from WWW.TWO-CUBED.COM.

Beam photo at ~5'.

Beam photo at ~5', underexposed by 2 stops to show the square beam.

Test unit was purchased from a Candlepower Forums member on the evening of 07-31-04, and was received on 08-04-04.

UPDATE: 00-00-00

Tough, durable casing
Really bright for a Luxeon I LED
Uses batteries that are common and relatively inexpensive

Lack of spillbeam may be of concern to some users
Uses a battery carriage - one more thing to lose or break

    MANUFACTURER: Pelican Products
    PRODUCT TYPE: Large handheld flashlight
    LAMP TYPE: 1.2 watt Luxeon LED
    No. OF LAMPS: 1
    BEAM TYPE: Fairly narrow, square spot with no spill
    SWITCH TYPE: Pushbutton on/off/momentary on barrel
    BEZEL: Plastic; LED and reflector protected by plastic window
    BATTERY: 3x C cells
    CURRENT CONSUMPTION: Unknown/unable to measure
    SUBMERSIBLE: Not stated, but probably yes
    WARRANTY: Lifetime


    Star Rating

Pelican 8020 M8 LED Flashlight *

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