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Maglite Flashlight Review, Illumination and a Weapon

Updated on November 2, 2017
Blond Logic profile image

Living on a farm in Brazil, I've gained local in-depth knowledge of food, plants, and traditions, which I share through my articles.

20 year old Maglite Flashlight
20 year old Maglite Flashlight | Source

Our Famous Maglite Flashlight

If you're thinking of buying a flashlight which will last, then you're going to be hard pressed to find a better one than a Maglite. I am not going to tell you, the usual review stuff about the build quality, which is excellent, and why you need to get one. The fact you're here reading tells me you've owned lesser quality flashlights and now, finally after all this time, know you deserve a better one. So, I am not going to try and give you the hard sell, because you already know you want one. I want to tell you about how we use ours and why, where we live in rural Brazil, our Maglite flashlight is famous.

A Flashlight for the Tropics

Before I tell you why it has become 'known', I need to give you a little background. We came to Brazil from the UK, where we were living in a small townhouse with a backyard the size of a postage stamp.
Both my husband and I enjoy nature, birds and the great outdoors and had to drive to places to see birds which would off in the distance. When we decided to move, we knew we wanted a place which offered us a better quality of life. We found our home on the internet and came to see it and others on a trip to Brazil in 2008. We moved into our current house in northeastern Brazil in 2009.

Although very different than where we left, we were in our element, with wildlife such as coatimundi racing across the front yard a few days after we arrived. Just 12 days after we arrived, the cat which the previous owners had left, went running. My husband grabbed the Maglite to see what animal of the night sent the cat leaping over the wall.

Using a Maglite as a Weapon

What he saw were three masked men racing towards him. My husband was standing on the top step at the back of our house, which is about a meter off the ground. He instinctively swung the flashlight cracking one of them on the side of the head, hitting him just above the eye. One of the men tackled my husband knocking him to the ground at which point my husband's prosthetic leg came off. The man held him down pressing a knee on his neck and holding a gun to his head.

The man who he'd hit with the Maglite was now bleeding profusely in my kitchen locating a bread knife, which he held to my throat while the other searched the house.

Here, all foreigners are considered rich, so you can imagine their surprise that they found virtually nothing in our house as our shipping container wasn't scheduled to arrive for several more weeks.

In the end, they took an expensive camera, our passports, some cash, our car documents etc.

The result of all that was time-consuming and stressful but that is another story for another time.

A Maglite Flashlight, the Stuff of Legends

What people failed to tell us beforehand, when being robbed in Brazil, you don't fight back. Because of this, the following day we must have had 20+ police arrive at our house. They all wanted to see the one legged man who beat a robber with a flashlight.

They arrived, shook my husband's hand and all had a feel of the Maglite, often hitting it into their own hand. They were impressed by the weight and the handiness of using it as a weapon. They knew that the American police used this type of flashlight and were justifiably impressed by it.

Several of the police who came the night of the robbery and the following day, still even now, show up for coffee and a chat when they are passing. This story I'm sure is still passed around the police station as new recruits come in, and come to visit us.

Maglite LED 2-Cell D Flashlight, Black
Maglite LED 2-Cell D Flashlight, Black

This is the improved version, which is LED. Ours would be using more battery life as LEDs are low consumption. My husband bought his flashlight about 20 years ago and has put it under some extreme conditions. Ours has been dropped on to concrete, used as a club to hit robbers, and been exposed to climatic conditions where other "premium items" have failed us. Including humidity, salt air, high temperatures, and a constant barrage of sand filled winds.

If I had to take one thing with me into a jungle even a concrete jungle, it would be a Maglite.


Illuminating the Natural World.

Of course, we don't only use our Maglite as a weapon against ne'er-do-wells. Here on our farm, my husband will often go out in the evening looking for the eyes of animals in the light beam. He has seen what he believes was a jungle cat, bigger than a house cat but smaller than a jaguar. We also get nightjars which will normally just sit and look at him.
My husband is a photographer and we have also used the flashlight for locating birds, bats, frogs, and toads for night shots. Shots such as bats eating our mangoes and even roosting birds.

short-tailed leaf nose bat (Carollia perspicillata)
short-tailed leaf nose bat (Carollia perspicillata) | Source

Using a Flashlight as a Deterrent for Security

Another time the Maglite came into its own was when we had a fish thief. We were raising tilapia at the time and a man was carrying out sack loads of our fish. Had he not left his flip flops behind on one of his nighttime visits, we wouldn't have known.

One Friday night sitting in the dark on our front porch, we waited. Just after midnight, we saw a bicycle approach our fence. My husband was dressed in dark camouflage, gripping his Maglite in one hand and a pick ax handle in the other. He already had his route planned to ambush this thief, staying in the shadows, and approaching him from behind. My heart was racing as the thief on the bicycle was waiting by the fence.

My husband had cleared some of the long grass during the previous few days near the fence, it was this which I think alerted the thief that we were aware of what was going on. He got on his bike and cycled away not realizing how close he came to being beaten. The first blow, would have been to the knee with the hardwood pickaxe handle and then followed on with the Maglite. My husband, although disabled, used to be a bouncer at night clubs and had also been trained in martial arts.

This may sound harsh to some of you reading but here, only about 10% of crimes are solved. We had contacted the police about our fish being stolen but without catching someone red handed, there isn't much they can do. Here if someone enters your home or land, you can protect it. Our fish were our livelihood.

If our dogs begin barking, my husband will first check to see which direction they are barking and either stand on the balcony shining the flashlight across the lakes or from the upstairs windows across the back to our trees. With very little light pollution here, the beam is more than enough to pick up any movement across our 8 acres. What it does do, is get all the neighboring dogs barking, and so we get all our neighbors out checking for potential problems.

View over tilapia cages
View over tilapia cages | Source

Rugged Flashlight

Other points I feel I should mention regarding the Maglite is it is corrosion resistant. Before moving here I would have shrugged my shoulders and said, “okay, good”. Where I live, I have been told this area has the second highest salt content in the air which makes everything metal rust in next to no time. I know a couple who live here and they had a roof collapsed because the nails had rusted through. Cars, refrigerators, and even the items for sale in shops such as canned foods have rust on them. It is quite unimaginable if you've never lived in an area with salt air and high humidity. The Maglite which my husband has had for years before we moved here, doesn't have a speck of rust or any signs of corrosion. I can't think of one other item we brought with us or have bought here which can make this claim.

I mentioned the humidity we have here as it is something we didn't take into consideration. As I said previously my husband is a photographer and normally uses high quality, Canon cameras. We have had numerous problems due to mold growing inside behind the lenses. Although we keep them in a sealed environment and they are supposed to be able to withstand this due to their construction, the fungus still forms.
The Maglite, on the other hand, shows no signs of mold on the glass or any degradation due to the elements. This, my husband, says is down to the integrity of the o-rings. It happily sits on our dining room table, ready to grab quickly if the need arises.

Do you own a Maglite Flashlight?

See results
Memorex batteries
Memorex batteries | Source

Memorex Batteries

The batteries we use are a high capacity rechargeable from Memorex.

Additional Notes:

After writing this article, I posted a link to it on Twitter. I received a like from the Maglite and thought, 'how nice that they saw the article.

I then received a message from the director of sales for Latin America. She said she enjoyed reading my article and offered my husband and me two new flashlights!

I couldn't believe it, not only did we love our old Maglite, I felt honored that my article had been read by someone from their company.

Our flashlights arrived and the difference was incredible. We are now able to see to the dunes which are behind our house. It was from the dunes that our robbers entered our land before.

For us, the Maglite has been an integral part of our life here on our farm. Now with our new ones, we can avert any danger before it happens.

If any of you are thinking of purchasing a flashlight, I can wholeheartedly recommend their products.

Our New Maglite Flashlights
Our New Maglite Flashlights | Source

© 2017 Mary Wickison


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    • Blond Logic profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Wickison 

      9 months ago from Brazil

      Hi Audrey,

      We are now more alert to potential problems, but it wasn't the welcome we were hoping for. The Maglite did develop a following locally after this happened.

      My husband was recently showing one of the new ones (the Mag-tec) to a visitor, and he loved it. Some products in this region of Brazil, are imported from China and not good quality so when they see quality, they appreciate it.

      Thanks for reading.

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 

      9 months ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Whoa Mary, you've had some very close calls! So glad you have such a bold, well-trained protector. Scary! I have several maglites and really like them. Thanks for this hub.

    • Blond Logic profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Wickison 

      10 months ago from Brazil

      Hi Moonlake,

      I can wholeheartedly recommend Maglite. In fact, 30 minutes ago, I did just that with a friend here in Brazil. She too wants a flashlight she can rely on.

      Now we have dogs, and bars on the downstairs windows and doors which is common here and in parts of Europe.

      That attack has made us prepare ourselves and be more aware of our surroundings.

      Thanks for reading and your comment.

    • moonlake profile image


      10 months ago from America

      I needed a flashlight last week and everyone I found in the house didn’t work even with new batteries. Now I know which flashlight to buy. Enjoyed your hub so glad you both came out of robbery with your lives.

    • Blond Logic profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Wickison 

      12 months ago from Brazil

      A disaster can be a wake-up call to what needs to be done differently. A Maglite, is one that will definitely come in useful for many different situations.

      I hope your family and home came through Irma with minimal damage.

      There are many authors on Hubpages, it seems, who live in the affected area.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 

      12 months ago

      You certainly live an exiting life. I am going to check on the Maglite next time I visit the hardware story. This past hurricane we realized we need a a couple of good flashlights. This will help.

    • Blond Logic profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Wickison 

      12 months ago from Brazil

      Hi Ana,

      I have now enabled the 'contact author' on Hubpages. You should see a link below my name at the top of this page. This will be an email link to me via Hubpages.

      I look forward to your email.


    • profile image

      Ana Schneider 

      12 months ago

      Mary, I am the Director of Sales for Latin America for Maglite. Saw your article about our flashlight and would like to reach out to you. Is there a phone number where we can call you in Brazil? Or a direct email?

    • Blond Logic profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Wickison 

      12 months ago from Brazil

      We put her in a box and took her to the previous owners who only moved to the next town. The woman who's cat it was, began helping me with my Portuguese and I helped her with English.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image


      12 months ago from USA

      I don't know how I missed this when you first published it, but I LOVE the story, as your local police and others do. Your husband is gutsy and that flashlight is a must-have! What ever happened to the kitty that the previous owners left behind?

    • Blond Logic profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Wickison 

      12 months ago from Brazil

      Hi Bronwen,

      Yes, our area can get lively.

      We had several years of drought so we now have changed from fish farming to coconut farming. Although it takes longer to see a financial return, it is less stressful.

      For the past two seasons, we have had a good amount of rain, but for us, changing to coconuts was better.

      I'm pleased you found it interesting. Thanks for your comment.

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 

      12 months ago from Victoria, Australia

      An interesting read. It sounds as if you live in an area where you really need to keep on your toes. I hope your fish industry is a great success.

    • Blond Logic profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Wickison 

      12 months ago from Brazil

      Hi Dora,

      It was a case of thinking on our feet and at least we had a flashlight which was solid.

      I still look for people who might have a scar above their eye as the police never caught those involved.

      Thanks for reading.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      12 months ago from The Caribbean

      Great review of the Maglite with its sterling flashlight qualities; above all, as a weapon. Sorry about the near traumatic incidents, but still a great read!

    • Blond Logic profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Wickison 

      12 months ago from Brazil

      No, the word 'torch' is something Americans associate with Vikings run through villages whilst holding a flaming stick above their heads as they pillage a town before setting it ablaze. However, I know what you mean, and yes you do need one for dark alleyways, both as a source of light and as a club.

      Glad you like my tale of woe, thanks for reading.

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 

      12 months ago from England

      You gave me a great idea when reading this. every single year I stumble through our alley next to the house without a flashlight! lol! great idea! funny story, I remember telling someone on facebook that I bought a torch, they said, what's that? LOL! seems the word torch isn't used over there!

    • Blond Logic profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Wickison 

      12 months ago from Brazil

      Hi Bill,

      I hope you don't encounter the same things we did in the dark! It is an excellent choice of a flashlight. Thanks.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      12 months ago from Olympia, WA

      It's that time of year, isn't it, Mary? We could definitely use a new flashlight. Thanks for the review. I think you've motivated me to head to Fred Meyer today and get one. I spend a lot of time in the darkness during the winter months checking on our animals.

      Happy Friday to you!

    • Blond Logic profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Wickison 

      12 months ago from Brazil

      It will never let you down and you'll be ready for any situation. I hope you get one. Thanks for reading.

    • Mamerto profile image

      JR Mamerto 

      12 months ago from Cabuyao

      Now I know what I want for Christmas :)


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