When it comes to weapon lights, there are only a few brands I trust — Surefire, Modlite, OWL, and of course, Streamlight. Streamlight offers an excellent balance of features, design, durability, and price. Most of my guns are outfitted with Streamlights, from handguns to shotguns and now, my rifles. Streamlights are awesome tools, and on my latest rifle build, I utilized the Streamlight ProTac Rail Mount 1. This is one of many lights Streamlight produces for long guns, and I chose this particular light for a few different reasons.
ProTac Weight and Length
First off, it’s very lightweight and quite compact. I was going to mount the light to the forward portion of the gun and did not want the gun to feel unbalanced with a heavy front end. The light weighs a mere 4.5 ounces and is only 4.25 inches long. This little fella is very small and plenty potent as a weapon light. Its weight and length ensure my weapon remained balanced and comfortable for use over a long period. The design is also smooth and it won’t snag on gear or MOLLE.
Power and Batteries
I also didn’t need an incredibly powerful light for this gun and preferred it to have a long battery life rather than be ultra-bright. The ProTac Rail Mount 1 runs for 14.5 hours in the low setting, and 1.75 hours in the high setting. The high setting provides 350 lumens, which is bright enough to cast a beam of 219 meters — quite the range for 350 lumens. Additionally, the light casts a wide net providing you with significant peripheral vision, thus being well-suited for indoor use.
Compact weapon lights can get up to the 1,000-lumen range easily these days; yet that kind of power also kills your battery quite quickly. Speaking of batteries, ProTac Rail Mount 1 uses a dual-fuel design that can take either AA batteries or CR123A batteries. Dual fuel designs are fantastic and make logistics much easier. That being said, when using AA batteries, the light’s high power is only 150 lumens. The 350-lumen peak light is reached only with a CR123A battery.
Accessories and Value
The Streamlight ProTac Rail Mount 1 is also a complete package. It comes with everything you need to mount the light to a weapon and use it. This includes a rail mount, a tail cap switch, a pressure switch, and even the batteries needed to power it. Heck, they even include tie-downs to secure the pressure pad to your weapon.
All of this comes together for a light that sells for around $110. That’s an incredible value for such a well made and well-designed weapon light.
How Does it Perform?
This is the million-dollar question. The ProTac Rail Mount 1 has an all-aluminum body and mount that is well-made and locks onto your rail quite tightly.
The ProTac is IPX7 waterproof, and that means you can drop it in one meter of water and leave it there for 30 minutes without a problem. If you aren’t planning to go swimming with your light, you should be good to go.
The ProTac also features the Ten-Tap programmable modes. They allow you to program three different modes: You can run the light in high, low, and strobe. I prefer high and low that I find simple and easy to remember and use.
Finally, the Streamlight ProTac is sturdy enough to suffer the beatdown from recoil of guns bigger than my mere AR 15. It works on AR 10s, shotguns, and more without stuttering, flickering, or dying. It’s a recoil proof design that is quite durable.
For home defense or duty rifle, the Streamlight ProTac Rail Mount 1 is an excellent choice. It is reliable, powerful, and of excellent value. Streamlight is a well-known brand with a reputation for quality, and the ProTac testifies to that.