Q: What type batteries do I use in a Cloud Defensive OWL?
The Optimized Weapon Light (OWL) runs only on 18650 rechargeable batteries. You CAN NOT use CR123 batteries OR 16340 batteries in the system. That will void your warranty, damage the system and potentially place you in harms way. ONLY use 18650 cells.
OWL will run on both protected and un-protected 18650 cells. Protected cells have a small chip that safeguards against things like over-heating and hard-shorts in the system. The trade-off however is they are not as powerful. So most protected cells have less available amperage and more storage capacity (3000+ mAh).
Some 18650 batteries are flat-top batteries. Others are button-top. The OWL will run on both BUT some 18650 batteries may be too long for the OWL. It is virtually impossible to list out all the compatible batteries. Generally speaking, the protected button-top batteries are too long for OWL. If you stick to our recommended batteries, you will not have issues there.
Q: What brand of batteries should I use?
Batteries are like most things: If you buy cheap, expect cheap results. Do not use off-brand or junky batteries. ONLY use good, known brands. We recommend the following:
Samsung. Sony. (tip: We have seen excellent performance from the VTC6 lately) LG. Sanyo. Panasonic Batteries are cheap. Your safety and your property are not worth saving a few dollars (literally) on a battery. Other batteries will work in the OWL. But cheap batteries do not perform as well and they are potentially dangerous, in any application much less a weapon light.
Q: Amps and Milliampere hours (MaH) – what is that?
Summed up for the sake of education and battery selection:
Amperage (Amps or A) is the unit to indicate how fast a battery delivers power to the light. In the OWL, this is an indicator of performance potential. Batteries with higher discharge rates are capable of better performance. We have found that 15-30A batteries perform the best in OWL. We’ve not seen any higher numbers with batteries exceeding 30A. Thus, we do not recommend using cells that exceed that.
OWL will run on lower amperage batteries but it will not run how you want it to run.
Milliampere hour (mAh) is the unit of measurement that indicates the storage capacity of the battery. The higher the number, the more it stores. Most 18650 batteries range from 2500 mAh.
Q: Can I use CR123 batteries in the Optimized Weapon Light?
Never use a CR123 batteries in the system. That will damage your OWL and void your warranty. And it can put you in physical danger too. Do not ever run 123 batteries in the system. Period.
Never use any battery except an 18650 rechargeable cell in the system.
Q: Why did you choose to make CR123s incompatible?
A few reasons, actually.
1) Because they are far inferior to the 18650 battery. An 18650 at 50% charge has more energy potential than 2 brand new CR123s. Think about that for a second.
2) CR123s are disposable. So you have buy them by the dozen. On average, 2 of those will cost you about 3 dollars. You drain them and junk them. That is hard on your wallet. Conversly, the 18650 is about 8 dollars. And it is good for 200-400 deep cycles. So let’s call that 300 for the sake of argument. A 3 dollar set of 2 CR123 batteries multiplied by 300 cycles is 1800 dollars worth of batteries that you have to buy and then junk. Or you can spend 8 dollars. Once.
3) The 18650 is pervasive. You can access them domestically easier than you can CR123s. They are all over the internet (including our web store) and they are in every Vape shop in the country. If you need an 18650, its easy to find now. And with OWL running on protected and unprotected as well as flat and button-top batteries, it means you should have no issues ever finding a battery in a pinch.
Q: How do different batteries impact my performance in the OWL?
The OWL utilizes a direct-drive electrical system. That means your output and your run-time are dictated by the batteries you select. So for the first time, you can select your batteries and thus, your light performance, to match your needs. That is very nice but it means you have to learn a little bit about batteries.
We ship the OWL with a Samsung 18650 30Q battery (pink). This is an unprotected, flat-top battery. It is a great performer in terms of output with very acceptable run-time numbers. The 30Q gives you a high level of Candela and Lumens.
We also ship the OWL with a Sanyo/Panasonic 18650GA battery. This is an unprotected, flat top battery. It is slightly less in terms of output but it does give you extended run-time. The GA yields a couple hundred less Lumens and you see less Candela as well. They are great batteries to have in the event you find yourself away from a charger for a period of time.
Q: How Water-Proof is Optimized Weapon Light?
OWL is very waterproof. It is fully submersible to 200 ft of water for 24 hours. That means we have an IPX8 rating. To ensure your OWL is totally sealed from the elements (water included), all you need to do is the following:
Keep an eye on the O-rings on each side of the body. Keep a very small dusting of lubrication on them. Us a non-petroluem-based synthetic lubricant.
Ensure the O-ring under the bezel ring is centered and that the bezel ring is tight (no more than hand tight though). If you do that, your OWL is totally waterproof.
Q: Why is my tail-cap hard to put on?
It can absolutely be difficult to put the tail cap on the light when mounted to the gun.
We designed it that way so we could ensure the tail-cap does not accidentally disengage. It takes some hand strength to engage or disengage the tail-cap when mounted to the weapon. If you struggle with that, the easiest fix is to just use your shirt or a piece of cloth over the top of that tail-cap so you get more purchase on it.
Also, the tail-cap is not intended to be removed often. Battery changes are executed through the front (head). So the tail-cap should really only be manipulated when you mount the OWL the gun. Having it tight is preferable to having it disengage unintentionally.
Q: Is it possible to over-torque the clamp screw?
Yes. Only use the tool in the tail-cap for mounting the OWL to the gun. It is a proprietary screw designed to NOT allow the use of a socket for that reason. If you put another tool on that clamp screw, you can potentially damage the OWL. Hand-tight on that screw, with the provided tail-cap tool is all you need. Don’t do anything stupid.