Product Type: Uni-Com gadgets
Newest Review: ... it up for around 30 seconds to a minute, depending on how long you want the beam to last. It makes a whirring sound when turned and the f... more
You'll be thanking yourself that you bought this for the car ....................
Uni-Com Wind-Up Headlamp
Member Name: Randal
Uni-Com Wind-Up Headlamp
Advantages: Robust, tough and easy to operate.
I wonder how many people have missed this torch because Dooyoo have called it a 'headlamp' when it is actually called a 'dynamo torch'. Either way, I bought 2 of these many years ago to put one in each of our cars after suddenly finding out late one night, whilst trying to do a tyre change, that our trusty battery torch had gone flat. So never to be left in that dark situation again, I invested in these wind-up or dynamo torches to ensure that I would be able to have light when I needed it. At the time, I think I paid something like £5 each for them.
The torch itself feels quite chunky in your hand, being about 15cm long, 6cm wide and 4.5cm deep. Being made of plastic, it is also very light weight and has some small cushioned rubber type strips on either side to help with gripping and holding the torch. At the front of the device you have the clear lens which houses the 3 super bright LEDs, where the overall lens has 3 separate smaller lens moulded into it, one to focus the light for each LED. Now the purpose of the LEDs is to emit light when the torch is switched on. But the beauty of LEDS is that they are designed to emit quite a lot of light whilst using little power, and by building up LEDs in sets (in this case 3 together) you can get quite a good beam of light emitted. Hence, that is why many modern torch manufacturers are starting to use LEDs in their devices in order to get good light output for little battery usage, thus giving a greater duration of the torch batteries.
Looking around the torch further, on the top you have a rubber protected push button on off switch, and moving around to the bottom of the torch, you have the business end where the winding handle is. Now this has actually been very cleverly designed. The handle hinges around the winding spindle and is 10cm long. On the end of the handle you have grip which pivots on the end of the handle. So the idea is that you wind the handle round and round to charge the internal battery up. When not is use, the handle folds away flat against the torch, where the grip sits into the little recess at the base of the torch.
So what's it like to use? Well winding the torch up is a breeze. You will feel a slight resistance from the internal generator, but the length of the handle and the size of the grip ensures that winding the torch is an easy operation, and the handle and mechanism itself feels quite robust. Winding for about a minute will give me about 20 - 25 minutes duration of a fairly strong light, but what you do find is that that light will gradually fade off during that duration. So the first 10-15 minutes will be fairly bright after which it will start to fade out. To overcome this, the idea then is to wind the handle again for about another minute to recharge the battery and get your bright light going again.
Is it any good? Well personally, I think it is brilliant, especially considering that it doesn't need to use any conventional batteries, and hence uses green energy. Whilst the light output is not 'earth shattering', it is bright enough to see what you are doing and where you are going. I have used it several times for various issues with or around the car, or to see the pathway to someone's door, and in each case it has been more than adequate. It's also been dropped and scraped several times to no ill effect, with no cracks on the casing bar a scuff mark or 2. It is also designed to be splash proof, and we have tested that theory after dropping it in a puddle, again with no problems.
In summary, after several years of use (and abuse), this torch is still going strong and has never let us down. Having already found myself in a situation with a flat torch in the middle of the night, this wind-up variety has been an absolute god send in terms of reliability, giving me light when I needed it, and all wrapped up in a robust tough design that is easy to operate. So this easily justifies a 5* recommendation.
Summary: Well made wind-up torch.
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