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SAKs with a flashlight....

Discussion in 'Multi-tools & Multi-purpose Knives' started by Doctorlock, Jul 8, 2017.

  1. Doctorlock

    Doctorlock Platinum Member Platinum Member

    24
    Jan 1, 2015
    I recently bought two SAKs with LED flashlights. A Spartan Lite and a Signature Lite. I noticed that the Signature Lite, while smaller, is much brighter. At first I thought it might be due to the batteries so I put brand new batteries into the Spartan Lite but it appeared to be the same brightness. Anyone else experience this? (I assume they use the same LED in both but I don't know that for sure)
     
  2. Piso Mojado

    Piso Mojado Basic Member Basic Member

    Jan 11, 2006
    This shouldn't be happening, unless the big knife is pre-2008 and the little knife is post-2008.

    Victorinox originally used a 2 MM red LED powered by a 3V lithium button battery (CR 1025). It is useful as a keyhole finder, and the red LED can be used in the dark without waking a sleeper. According to SAKwiki, "A White Light option, also using a 2mm LED, was introduced in 200x, and uses the same battery." I've never seen one, but I assume it had a similar dimness.

    In 2008, Victorinox upgraded to a 3.5 MM white LED. It is more than twice as bright as the red LED, but it is not bright enough to reliably show footing in an unfamiliar place or over broken ground.

    When powered by two 3V batteries, the 3.5 MM white LED shines 50% brighter and it becomes an adequate substitute for a AAA LED flashlight — not equally bright, but bright enough to save you from falling down a canyon or through a hole in the floor.

    If your Spartan Lite has a 2 MM LED and your Signature Lite has a 3.5, the little knife should be brighter. If your Spartan Lite is the current production model, it has a defective LED light module.
     
  3. Doctorlock

    Doctorlock Platinum Member Platinum Member

    24
    Jan 1, 2015
    Wow! Fantastic info! Thanks Piso Mojado. Much appreciated. Probably too late to return this one now but I feel better about taking a shot and buying another one. So if I'm understanding this they both have the same LED (or should in current models) but the Spartan Lite is brighter because it uses 2 batteries as opposed to 1(?) in the Signature Lite?
     
  4. Piso Mojado

    Piso Mojado Basic Member Basic Member

    Jan 11, 2006
    The 3.5 MM white LED is about 50% brighter when powered by two batteries. I've tested this in my basement with a Spartan Lite and several 58 MM SAKs.

    Powered by one battery, the 3.5 MM white LED is about twice as bright as the 2.0 MM red LED (also tested in the basement). I've never seen the 2.0 white LED. White looks brighter than red, but they give about the same range of vision in the dark.

    I don't know when Victorinox began producing the Spartan Lite, but I found a 2007 thread about it on another forum, and their knife must have had a 2.0 MM LED. If you bought your Spartan Lite recently and it was new in box, I would assume it has a 3.5 MM LED. I doubt that anyone is selling new old stock after 9 years.
     
  5. Doctorlock

    Doctorlock Platinum Member Platinum Member

    24
    Jan 1, 2015
    Appreciate all the info Piso. I'm planning on picking up another one. I'll let you know how that turns out.
     

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