Pistol Mounted Lights & How To Use Them

Here at GunSpot, we use an XDM Elite Tactical for our videos and it’s one sweet piece. With the flared magwell, a threaded barrel, suppressor sights, and our US Optics DRS 2.0 mounted, it is a sharp-looking gun. The last piece to the tactical setup was adding a weapon-mounted light. For that, we decided on the X300 Ultra from Surefire. The X300 Ultra has a tight 1000 lumen beam which is perfect for tactical use.

After getting this light we decided to do a video about how to use a weapon-mounted light on your pistol in a tactical way, that won’t lead to you just getting shot. Like all things, there is a correct technique to this and what is normally depicted is wrong.

First of all when picking a light pick one that has a constant on switch but that also has a pressure switch on it. The X300 Ultra does have both of these options and for it to be a tactically sound light it needs to have both features. When you are clearing a new space where there might be a threat you really only want to use your pressure switch.

Using the pressure switch is the best way to clear rooms when you're by yourself in the dark. By toggling the light on only when you need it, you're going to do two things. First of all, it’s likely it could confuse any threat in the setting. Since they will only be using short bursts of light beams. It could even give the illusion of there being more than one person. Second and most importantly by not leaving the light on constantly you're not telegraphing your presence to the threat. Think about it like a giant spotlight in a dark place that the bad guy can follow right back to you. Leaving a light on causes you to lose all concealment. Which is not smart if you are all by yourself with no support.

There is a time and a place where leaving the light on a constant setting is important. For example, if you were on a team performing a dynamic entry, like a SWAT team might do, you’d be okay leaving that light on. In a situation like this, you might have five to six team members all moving through corporately in a dark environment. When you have six people doing a dynamic entry like this, all surprise is going to be lost pretty much instantly. So it’d be more important to have that light on to blind the threat and move quickly.

I encourage you to check out our video above, our GunSpot Chief Instructor Grant LaVelle has served in the USMC and on SWAT teams where he has conducted raids like mentioned earlier. He teaches from a place of over 30 years of experience. Like always we want to encourage you to practice doing this with your light, get used to toggling on that beam, observing, and quickly releasing it. Practice makes perfect and like Grant always says, “train hard your family deserves it!”

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