Torches, torches and more torches. Yes Randburg Midas stock a wide range of torches!
Don’t forget for ALL your outdoor lifestyle related needs Randburg Midas has your covered. If we don’t have what you are looking for, we will get it for you.
Let’s take a look at the various types of torches. There are many different styles of LED torches, each with a specific or range of use.
General Hand-held Torches
Traditionally, a hand-held torch consisted of a long tube filled with large, D-type cells, with a larger end containing a filament bulb and reflector, rated to the total battery voltage. A standard torch contained four such cells, each initially contributing 1.5 volts, to yield a total of 6 volts. Notably, the D cell was actually introduced in 1898 as the first ever flashlight battery.
While these hand-held torches were solidly built, often used by the police and emergency services, they suffered from poor battery life, and the batteries themselves were expensive to replace.
These have now largely been replaced by general-purpose torches that offer superior battery life, increased brightness, and smaller physical sizes.
Head torches were traditionally worn by mountaineers and cavers. They used a single filament bulb that was mounted on a climbing or caving hat, or constructed as a headband, to be worn on the head to provide light in whichever direction the wearers faced. These head torches often had a battery pack situated on the belt of the wearer to provide added illumination time with larger batteries. Nowadays, with the advances in LED lighting and their reduced need for current, most head torches no longer require the extra weight and bulk of a separate battery pack. Instead, smaller, more longer-lasting batteries can be incorporated right inside the LED light itself.
Because of their increased efficiency and battery life, and what was once the domain of larger, battery-powered torches or even mains lanterns, LED floodlights are now starting to appear on the market. These can range from smaller, handheld units up to much larger devices. The larger devices often have magnets on the reverse, making them ideal for temporary attachment under car bonnets, getting the light exactly where it is needed without the inconvenience of sacrificing one hand to hold it in place.
LED torches that are useful to motorists are becoming very popular. Often, these take the form of a rechargeable torch that fits into the universal cigarette lighter socket in a car. This means that, whenever an emergency arises, the user may simply unclip the torch from the cigarette lighter, confident that the batteries are in peak condition. Automotive torches often feature flashing red or amber units, so the torch can be safely put out in the road to warn passing motorists of possible danger.
Gone are the days of bulky, often expensive, unreliable bicycle lamps. The advent of modern LED technology has meant that cycle lighting has undergone a revolution, resulting in much smaller and lighter bicycle lamps that also need far fewer and smaller batteries. LED cycle lights now often have a range of flashing schemes. While, in the past, the need for light on dark streets was paramount, modern street lighting means this has largely been surpassed by the need to be seen by other road users and pedestrians. Flashing, red, rear LED lights, and ultra-bright, white, flashing front LEDs are now the norm. As an added feature, many front, white, cycle lights now unclip from the handlebars. This helps prevent opportunist theft, but also means the cyclist can conveniently unclip the light and use it as a small hand torch.
A modern LED camping torch is often seen as both a torch and a lantern. Setting the switch in one position, the torch gives off a broad, almost floodlight effect, while, with the switch in the opposite position, yields a narrow, focussed beam. Often, camping torches are rechargeable from a small mains-powered adaptor, however, some camping torches come with a standard plug that fit into any car’s cigarette lighter socket. LED camping torches now offer improved brightness and extended battery life over their older counterparts.
Military / Police Torches
The military and emergency services have long used torches in their work, and many torches now on sale are advertised as being in a ‘military style’. These torches have the added advantage of solid and durable construction, and are renowned for their impressive battery life. In the past, using traditional filament bulbs, military torches were large and heavy, whereas many of today’s torches are small enough to fit in the palm of the hand, yet are many times brighter than their ancestors.
There is now on the market a range of LED torches and lanterns that do not even require batteries, rechargeable or not. They rely instead on capacitors to store the charge coming from a motor connected as a small generator. Cranking the handle of the wind-up torch for a few minutes is enough to give a few minutes’ worth of light. These torches are ideal for emergencies and motorists often keep them in a glove or passenger door compartment in case of emergency at night.
Replacement Bulbs for Standard Torches
It is now possible to purchase LED bulbs that are a direct replacement for the older incandescent-type bulbs. While they are initially an order of magnitude more expensive than the older type bulbs, the fact that they last so much longer is worth considering for their long-term cost savings and convenience. As an additional benefit, replacing an older bulb with an LED version means that the batteries last considerably longer than when powering a standard bulb.
Fully Adjustable Lighting
Many LED torches now offer a range of different settings for providing light tailored to the users’ needs. As previously mentioned, cycling lights now have a range of different flashing sequences. These not only provides a brighter, more noticeable warning light to other motorists, but have the advantage of prolonging battery life. An LED torch with a 50 per cent flashing cycle for example, last twice as long as a steady light.
If purchasing an LED torch for camping or other outdoor activities, those with multiple LEDs as its light source often also contain controls to custom select the number of LEDs lit at any given time, which also reduces cost and prolongs life.
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