Vortex KC1 Flashlight, retail $56.95 (www.vortexvision.us)
Manufactured by Vortex Vision Inc. (www.vortexvision.us)
Last updated 03-05-07

The Vortex KC1 is a small, tactical style flashlight that uses a 1.2 watt Luxeon Star LED, and a single CR2 cell to power that LED. It has a spring-loaded "lobster claw" clasp on a swivel, so you can affix it to your keychain if you wish.

It comes in an almost all-aluminum body, which is knurled (texturised) to help aid in grip.


To use your new Vortex KC1, twist the tailcap clockwise. This turns it on. Twist the tailcap counterclockwise approximately 1/10th of a turn to turn it off.

See, that wasn't hard at all, wasn't it?

To change the cell in the Vortex KC1, unscrew and remove the tailcap, throw it on the floor or pavement, and stomp on it with bowling shoes...O WAIT!!! YOU'LL NEED THAT!!! So just keep it in your hand. Set the bezel aside instead. Don't throw it in the garbage, stomp on it, throw it in the bushes, or throw it in the toilet.

Tip the used cell out of the tailcap, and dispose of or recycle it as you see fit.

Insert a new CR2 cell in the tailcap, flat-end (-) negative first.

Screw the bezel back on, and there, you're finished. Unscrew the bezel slightly so you don't waste a perfectly good battery.
Aren't you glad you didn't stomp on that tailcap now?
Flattened tailcaps won't fit the bezels of Vortex KC1s - or any other flashlight for that matter.

Due to the way the flashlight was constructed, I am not able to obtain a current usage measurement.

The Vortex KC1 flashlight is durable, to the point that it survived eleven whacks against the corner of a concrete stair (six against the side of the tailcap, five against the side of the bezel), and does not appear to have been damaged by the abuse (other than some very, very minor gouging on the side of the bezel and tailcap where it was struck), and it still operates properly.

It has a Type II anodized finish. I was relatively easily able to put a scratch (to bare metal) in it with the blade of a Swiss army knife. So it probably has a Type II anodized finish.
Would I really try to cut up a brand spanken new flashlight?
You bet your sugar-coated toilet muscle (sweet patootie) I would, if it's in the name of science.

There is knurling (texturising) and four flats milled into the barrel, so retention (the ability to hold the flashlight when your hands are cold, wet, or oily) should not be a significant issue.

The KC1 appears to be water-resistant, so you should not have to worry about using it in the rain or snow. It should also be submersible to at least one foot.
I removed the tailcap, relieved the flashlight of its battery, and performed that dreadful suction test on it and it did not leak.
So I'm confident in saying you can use the flashlight in the rain or snow; and falls into shallow water should not kill it either.

There's a clear, flat plastic window (or "lens", if you prefer that term) covering the Luxeon's optic, and probably contributing to the water-resistance of this flashlight.

Beam photo on the test target at ~12"
Measures 485,000mcd on a Meterman LM631 light meter.

Beam photo on a wall ~15' away.
That red star thing is from an American DJ Laser Widow.

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

ProMetric analysis
Beam cross-sectional analysis.
Image made using the ProMetric System by Radiant Imaging.

Test unit was purchased from one of my housemates on 02-02-05. I had to wait until today to buy an $8 battery for it at Wallgreens.

UPDATE: 00-00-00

Small size makes it pocketable - in coat pockets anyway
Decent brightness for its size
Waterproof and submersible to at least one foot

Type II anodizing is not as hard as anodizing on flashlight bodies could be

    MANUFACTURER: Vortex Vision Inc.
    PRODUCT TYPE: Small handheld flashlight
    LAMP TYPE: 1.2 watt Luxeon LED
    No. OF LAMPS: 1
    BEAM TYPE: Narrow flood with dimmer corona
    SWITCH TYPE: Twist tailcap on/off
    BEZEL: Metal; LED and optic protected by plastic window
    BATTERY: 1x CR2 cell
    CURRENT CONSUMPTION: Unknown/unable to measure
    SUBMERSIBLE: Yes, to at least 12"
    ACCESSORIES: Battery
    SIZE: 2.5"L, 1.0"D
    WARRANTY: 10 years


    Star Rating

Vortex KC1 Flashlight * www.vortexvision.us

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