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Polarion Helios PF40 HID Searchlight, retail $2,195.00 (www.polarion-store.com...)
Manufactured by Polarion-USA (www.polarion-store.com)
Last updated 02-13-08

The Polarion Helios PF40 HID Searchlight (hereinafter, probably called a "Polarion") is an insanely bright handheld HID searchlight. It comes in a durable almost-all aluminum body (the tailcap, on/off ring, and handle are the three components that appear to be made out of a black polymer plastic instead of aluminum), two filters (amber and pebbly texture), feeds from one of two included 14.40 volt 4.4Ah rechargeable battery packs, comes with a charger for those batteries, and everything comes in a hard-sided case with cutouts in the foam liner for all of these components.

HID stands for High Intensity Discharge, and the most common example would be those brilliant blue-white headlights showing up on expensive cars like those made by BMW and Mercedes. Instead of a hot metal filament or a glowing block of chemicals on a stick, HID lights create light using a tiny ball of superheated, electrically-charged plasma inside a small quartz bulb. The result is light that is brighter and whiter than incandescent, and with more spectral content than LEDs.

This particular unit is a "passaround", has several dings in the bezel, and is missing the instructional materials (so I kind of have to fly by the seat of my pants here); but this product is intuitive enough to use that I think I can figure it out.
Even the filters were easy & intuitive to figure out...I had them on in no time flat.

Regarding the photograph of the open storage case above, the compartment at the front left of the lower portion of the case is empty; I do not know what is supposed to go there.


Be certain a freshly-charged battery is installed first (see directly below), and THEN you can go set fire to the side of a toliet seat factory several blocks away (yes, it's THAT intense!!!).

Just behind the ribbed part of the back of the bezel (head) is a ring. Turn the ring clockwise or counterclockwise ultil it clicks to turn the unit on.
Turn the ring clockwise or counterclockwise until it clicks again to turn the unit off.

Whenever the Polarion is turned on, you'll see some green lights in the tailcap. This is the battery charge state monitor.
Five lights indicates that the battery is 100% charged, 4 lights means 80% charge remaining, 3 lights means 60% charge remaining, etc.
These lights will remain on for 5 seconds, then automatically extinguish.

Unlike many other HID lamps, the Polarion is hot restrike capable; that is, if it's been on, then is turned off but you realise right away that you need it back on, just turn it back on...no need to wait for three or more seconds for the lamp to cool.

To use the filters, just take one in one hand, place it against the business-end of the Polarion, and turn it counterclockwise (as the front of the Polarion is facing forward) until it snaps into place. The filters fit a bit loosely; try to be at least reasonably careful so that the filter does not fall off and become lost.
Turn it clockwise (as the front of the Polarion is facing forward) and then lift it away when you are finished using it.

The Polarion and all of its accessories fit neatly into foam cutouts in the hard-sided carrying/storage case when you aren't using them; this helps keep your precious safe & sound. I say "your precious" here because it costs almost $2,200.00.

To charge the battery in the Polarion, unscrew & remove the tailcap, gently place it on the ground, and kick it into the woods so that the hungry squirrels will think it's something yummy to eat and subsequently scurry away with it...O WAIT!!! YOU'LL NEED THAT!!! So just set it aside instead.

Tip out the Li:ION battery, plug the small jack on the end of the charger's cord for it, plug the female end of the thick power cord into the shielded male jack on the charger box, and plug the male end of the power cord into any standard (in north America anyway) 110-130 volts AC 60Hz household receptacle.

As you can see, there are 5 lights on the battery itself - this indicates a full charge on the battery.

If you have any fewer than five LEDs lit, keep the battery on the charger. Charge time from a fully discharged battery is advertised at just 4 hours. The battery has protection circuitry built in, so it cannot become damaged by accidentally leaving it on the charger for too long.

When the battery is fully charged, unplug it from the charger, unplug the charger itself from the AC outlet, and slide the battery into the barrel (orienting it so the large nipple on one end faces outward); rotating (turning) it if necessary until it slides all the way in.
Then screw the tailcap back on.
Aren't you glad you didn't kick that tailcap into the woods with all those hungry squirrels now?

Photograph showing the reflector & HID lamp.

This is a loaner, and I'm sure its owner will want it back with no extra dings in the bezel (it has several already that weren't caused by me) or desiccated old rat pellets or yukky old toliet water in the barrel. So I won't throw it against the wall, stomp on it, try to drown it in the {vulgar term for feces}bowl or the cistern, run over it, swing it against the concrete floor of a patio, run over it with a 450lb Celebrity motorised wheelchair, stomp on it, use a large claw hammer in order to bash it open to check it for candiosity, fire it from the cannoņata (I guess I've been watching the TV program "Viva Piņata" too much again - candiosity is usually checked with a laser-type device on a platform with a large readout, with a handheld wand that Langston Lickatoad uses, or with a pack-of-cards-sized device that Fergy Fudgehog uses; and the cannoņata is only used to shoot piņatas to piņata parties away from picturesque Piņata Island), send it to the Daystrom Institute for additional analysis, or inflict upon it punishments that non-loaner lights may have inflicted upon them. So this section of the Polarion's web page will seem a bit more bare than this section of the web page on a page about a flashlight that is not a loaner sample.

The Polarion has a flat black Type III hard anodized finish; so it should stay newer looking longer even if it goes up against keys, tools, or other metal flashlights during transport or storage - assuming of course that you did not have it stored snugly in its case.

Beam photograph on the test target at 12".
Green color is a result of my camera's CCD overloading, and does not actually exist in the beam.
A more accurate (colorwise) photograph is shown two photographs below.

Unit easily overloads my Meterman LM631 light meter; which overloads at 20,000,000mcd.
I am not equipped to take light measurements of something this intense.

Beam photograph ("pebble-texture" filter) on the test target at 12".

Beam photograph (amber filter) on the test target at 12".

Beam photograph on a wall at ~10 feet.

Those rectangular graphic things in the upper left quadrant of this photograph are marquees from:

Atari ''Tempest''
Nintendo ''R-Type''
Super Tiger...er...uh...Konami ''Super Cobra''
Midway ''Omega Race''
Sega ''Star Trek''
Williams ''Joust''
Venture Line ''Looping''
Universal ''Mr. Do!'s Castle''
Jaleco ''Exerion''
Gremlin/Sega ''Astro Blaster''
Gottlieb ''Q*bert''

upright coin-op arcade video games from the 1980s.

That graphic toward the right is:
A "BIG SCARY LASER" poster sent by www.megagreen.co.uk

Below the "Big Scary Laser" poster is a calendar my sister gave me.

And that clock to the right of the "Big Scary Laser" poster is an Infinity Optics Clock.

Beam photograph on an outside door at ~25 feet.
Door has an albedo of ~0.090 (it's a *REALLY* dark brown), and photograph was taken at 4:28pm PST on 02-11-08.

Beam photograph at night (6:09m PST 02-11-08) at ~275 feet.
The albedo of the target (the house in this frame) is somewhere between 0.40 and 0.50.

Beam comparison between this HID and a Power On Board HID.
This one is the spot on the left.

Same as above; forced-on photoflash was used this time.
Again, the Polarion is the spot on the left.

Spectrographic analysis
Spectrographic analysis of the HID bulb in this searchlight.

Spectrographic analysis
Same as above; but deliberately "overexposed" to show weaker spectral lines.

ProMetric analysis
Beam cross-sectional analysis.

Even with the ProMetric's iris closed as far as it can go, it still overloaded
the instrument; as evidenced by that flat area at the top of the chart.

Image made using the ProMetric System by Radiant Imaging.

Test unit was loaned to me by a Candlepower Forums member, and was received at 2:25pm PST on 02-11-08.
When the unit is returned within a couple of days (it is a "passaround"), that dreadful "" icon will appear next to its listings on this website.

This passaround was sponsored by The Fenix Store.

The AC charger is rated to output 18.0 to 24.0 volts DC at 1.66 amps.

It is not known which country the Polarion was made in.
A product's country of origin really does matter to some people, which is why I wanted to publish it on this web page.
It was ***PROBABLY*** made in the United States, but without the box and/or instructional materials, I cannot be certain.

UPDATE: 02-12-08
The temperature of the charger was measured at 135°F (57.2°C) approximately two hours into a charge cycle.
Temperature of the upper part of the battery itself is 91°F (32.8°C) and ambient temperature in the charging area is 72°F (22.2°C).

UPDATE: 02-12-08
No, you aren't seeing things.
Yes, a same-day update.
The temperature of the charger was measured at 115°F (46.1°C) after the charge cycle was complete.

UPDATE: 02-13-08
The product has now been packaged up to continue its journey on the passaround list.
Therefore, that dreadful "" icon has been added next to its listings on this website.



    PRODUCT TYPE: HID searchlight
    LAMP TYPE: 40 watt HID (High-Intensity Discharge) lamp
    No. OF LAMPS: 1
    BEAM TYPE: Narrow spot w/medium spot corona and wide penumbra
    SWITCH TYPE: Rotary on/off behind bezel
    CASE MATERIAL: Aluminum & polymer plastic
    BEZEL: Metal; lamp & reflector protected by glass window
    BATTERY: 1x Li:ION battery; 14.4 volts 4,400mAh
    SUBMERSIBLE: Yes, to 200 feet
    SIZE: 12” (30cm) L, 3.40" (8.57cm) largest diameter, 2.85" (7.3cm) tailcap diameter
    WEIGHT: 4.101 lb (1.822kg)
    ACCESSORIES: Spare battery pack, AC charger, two filters, hard-sided carrying/storage case
    WARRANTY: 1 year


    Star Rating

Polarion Helios PF40 HID Searchlight * www.polarion-store.com...

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