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I have three of these torches, one in my car in case I break down, one in my house in case my torch has not batteries and the lights are out and one in my girlfriends car.
In my eyes, they are essential to have. If I broke down somewhere I don't need to worry that my torch has run out of juice, I can just crank this and watch it light up.
I picked this up for £3 from B&M in a sale a while back. Not a bad price for a "worst case scenario" torch.
+++How it works+++
There is a handle that pops out that you push in repeatedly and it powers the torch. You can "crank" the torch repeatedly and it will hold the charge you have generated. You can then turn the light on and use it like any torch until the charge dies down.
The more your charge the torch, the longer it stays on. I normally spend 1 minute charging it then I get a good 3 or 4 minutes of light before it starts to fade.
It surprised me how bright the light was, don't get me wrong, if you are trying to see more than a metre or two in front then you need a heavy duty torch but this torch is perfect to help turn your electric on or cast light on a tyre to change it.
Every home should have some sort of manual torch that doesn't need batteries. This device is exactly that, cheap, simple to use and surprisingly bright.
It doesn't compete with a battery powered torch, but it is a great backup torch to have just in case.
Hubby and I are big believers in being prepared. Looks like something stuck from those Brownies and Cubs meetings we went to as kids! Our house is full of candles, matches and various strategically-placed gizmos for sudden power cuts or other disasters. We've got torches of various types in all our rooms, and by the kitchen door we have one of these little dynamo torches.
I found this dynamo torch in good old Poundland about three years ago. It's identical to the black torch seen in the image above: it's around 4cm x 7cm x 1.5cm and weighs around 75g according to my trusty kitchen scales. It's made of moulded black and grey plastic units, all of which have been well-moulded together to form a contoured, easy-grip unit. The main part of the torch is formed from two black units, with the grey dynamo trigger sandwiched between. The top unit housing the lights is also grey. There are two grey switches on the side and a grey (fabric) strap attached at the back.
The light unit contains 3 white LEDs. I'm SO thankful for LED technology: the torches I had as a kid all had tiny, fragile glass bulbs that seemed to blow out every five minutes. LEDs last a lot longer and are far more robust.
The dynamo trigger juts out in a wedge shape from the main torch, from a couple of mm at the top angling out to around 1.5 cm at the back. The torch is operated by gripping the unit in the palm of your hand and squeezing the dynamo trigger with either your thumb or your four fingers, depending on which way you hold it. The torch can be operated either left or right-handed. Each squeeze produces a brief burst of light, so for continuous illumination you have to pump the trigger repeatedly. The torch makes a funny 'zippy' sound with every trigger press as the dynamo generates a little power.
The front slide switch turns the lights on and off and is marked with four little ridges. This overrides the dynamo lever if you're concerned about accidentally generating light when you don't want to. The back slide switch, marked with a couple of ridges and three dots in a triangular pattern, locks the dynamo trigger either flush with the unit for ease of carryuing or stuck out depending on its position when the switch is triggered.
The grey carry strap is made of nylon and creates a loop of around 5cm.
We keep this torch by the backdoor as an emergency backup if we have to go outside and check something in the garden during a power cut, or if we suddenly think of needing a torch as we leave the house. For these limited purposes, it's quite a good product.
Creating light means continuously pumping the dynamo trigger and, while you can change hands and grip positions, I find it very hard to use this torch for anything other than very brief periods of a couple of minutes due to painful hand joints. If I do want to make a quick check of something outside the house at night or in a power cut it's useful, but it's very noisy because of the dynamo.
I also have some issues with the manufacture of this torch. Firstly the two slide switches are flimsy and often have to be wiggled around to put them into the position I want. It's good that they have different contoured markings on them as this makes it easier to differentiate them in the dark. Secondly the nylon carrying strap is tiny! Even with my small wrists and narrow hands there is no way I could get this loop over more than three fingers, making it impractical for easy carrying. Much better to slip the torch into a pocket.
The three white LEDs throw out a fairly weak light, enough to illuminate no more than a metre ahead in pitch black conditions. This torch is no good for when Hubby and I go to firework displays or other winter festivals when you need a torch to negotiate dark paths.
The one major advantage of this torch, of course, is that it doesn't need batteries, and for that alone it deserves five stars; however the difficulty in maintaining anything but the weakest light for significant periods, plus problems with manufacture, have made me decide to knock my rating down to 3/5.
=Hand Pump Dynamo Torch=
=Why did I buy=
I love the Pannier Market in Tavistock, South Devon, and when we are on holiday in the area this is one place we always visit, it is like an Aladdin's cave.
On a visit a couple of years ago we saw this Hand Pump Dynamo Torches, we only paid 50p so we brought 3 to start off with, one of each of the cars, and the third for when we took the dog for a walk in the evening.
No batteries required, in this day and age that is not a saying we get to hear much. On one side of the torch you have 2 small slide like controls, these on mine are a white colour, the 1st (nearest the bulb) is the on / off switch which you just slide, the second is towards the bottom of the torch is a lock switch for the hand release function which charges the torch.
You just squeeze this with your hand as it fits in the palm of your hand perfectly and you just squeeze, it doubles up as good exercise for the hand. Even just 30 seconds of squeezing would get you at least 30 minutes of light.
There is two bulbs that make up the light in this, and it is perfectly serviceable in the dark, we use ours when we walk the dog on the Moors at night.
We were really impressed with the torches, that we went back and got about 10 more. We have them in the bedrooms, we all have metal headboards, so just pop one of these on the end and it's not in anyone's way.
When my daughter has a sleepover she and her friend use my double bed, and I have my daughters room, in my room I have one bedside cabinet, so when her friend stays she thinks the torch is brilliant as she can just grab the torch and use it to find the way to the toilet without having to wake my daughter to turn the main light on/
There's upstairs on the landing, downstairs by the front door, one in the under stairs cupboard, for reading meters, and also handy is the power goes.
There in the car, incise we need to read a map, we breakdown and in the boot.
Not that we women actually carry everything but the kitchen sink, but I have one in my handbag, finding keys in the dark, again they literally have 1001 uses.
These are not the best of quality, but for the job in hand they are worth more than the money paid, I have seen them on sale in eBay for prices up to £2.00
=Would I recommend=
I would highly recommend these torches, they come with a little strap that you can easily slip over your wrist.
Don't leave home without one.
The world is full of quirky little gadgets, some more useful than others. While torches are certainly something you need to look into depending on what you want, I think that this little dynamo torch is a bargain buy, at around the £5 mark or less depending on where you buy it from, and of course when.
The appeal first of all of this torch is that it's very small, perfect to fit in your hand. I can clasp my hand around it fully without any issues, and it fits perfectly in my pocket or the front part of my bag if I need it to. Compact gadgets are essential nowadays, as everyone is on the go and needs to be portable. You may a large, high powered torch at home or in your car for those situation needing the strongest of lights, but for the vast majority of needs of torch lights then this is perfect.
It operates by using a section of the torch that comes out from the side, and pushing it back in operates the dynamo inside, doing it over and over again in a pumping motion to power up the dynamo. It works on pumping power as opposed to batteries, so you never have any need to worry about it running out of batteries or running down. The only thing is if the LED lights inside come to the end of their life span, but they are supposed to last for thousands of hours, so this is unlikely to ever happen unless you live in perpetual darkness.
As this is easily portable, it's great for having with you for things like lighting the way for walking in the dark, going camping, looking under furniture for lost toys (it's brilliant for this) and also great for a torch for your kids to have and use. Our 8 year old has used a variety of dynamo torches and he gets the hang of them quickly and we don't have to worry about him fiddling with the battery compartment or anything like that.
One thing that a dynamo torch doesn't give you is the chance to just turn the torch on and not have to worry about charging as you go, assuming you have full battery charge to start with. This little dynamo is operated by pumping the handle, and to release it you first need to flick a small switch on the side. The handle flicks out and then stays in this position, meaning the pumping handle needs to be pushed in but will come back out of its own accord. Once you pump it a few times, then the power will last for a couple of minutes, the longer you pump it the longer it will last for, but this does seem to have a limit of a couple of minutes on it, you be aware that you need to keep pumping it to ensure you have the light on all the time.
The light is strong enough to see most things, giving off a somewhat strong glow. It's not as powerful a light as a large battery operated torch, more the soft light you sometimes see, but it's powerful enough to do the majority of things you may need from such a gadget. And for the low price and small sixe and portability, it's certainly well worth getting. I sometimes have an issue with the switch and where it needs to be in order for the dynamo to retain power and the handle to stay out, but this is more about me than about the torch, and should not be an issue. There is also a wrist strap to ensure you don't drop it.
Overall then, a recommended gadget. Well worth the cost and durable and long lasting, it gives off a somewhat strong glow that's good enough for most things and is easy to charge for a few minutes at a time. Recommended gadget.
I love torches and keep buying them for some reason. No idea why but I am fascinated with them and have a few scattered all over the house. I especially love torches that work without batteries like these ingenious little hand pump dynamo torches. I keep one of these little torches in the glove compartment of my car. I have a bigger torch in the boot of my car just in case I ever break down somewhere in the middle of the night but this one is great for when I have dropped something on the floor and need to find it or for other things such as getting my house key in the lock etc. There are loads of uses for this little torch and you might be surprised just how often you actually use it when you have it.
This torch is a dynamo torch meaning that it doesn't use batteries and instead relies upon a motion by the person using it to generate the electricity. In the case of this torch it is through the person using it pressing down on the handle and 'pumping' it. The handle is stored away in the torch out of the way and you just release it when you need to charge the torch up by sliding a switch along.
The thing I really like about this little torch is that you do not need to continuously pump the handle to get the torch to work as it powers itself after only a few pushes of the handle and then the torch is powered up for a few minutes of use. This is usually more than enough time for me to have found whatever it is that I am looking for but I know if I needed to use this torch for longer then it isn't difficult or hand work to get it to light up again for as long as I might need it to.
The light that omits from the torch is really bright and powerful which was a little unexpected when I first used it as I expected it to be quite weak die to its small size. The LED lights are supposed to have a burn time of over 100,000 hours and the bean from the torch is supposed to be powerful enough that it can be seen from over 1 mile away. I obviously have no idea if this is correct but it wouldn't surprise me as the light is powerful enough to penetrate even the darkest of spaces. It is also powerful enough that when I use it in the car to look for something under the seats etc. that it pretty much lights up the whole car so really would be a handy thing for everyone to keep in their cars just to give a little bit of comfort on a dark night if you do happen to break down.
I also like the fact that it has a wrist strap though I have hardly ever needed to use this but it does mean that I could strap it to my wrist and use it for prolonged periods of time. When it is strapped to the wrist it sits almost perfectly so that everything is positioned for easy use and you can walk along continuing to pump it for as long as you need the light. I haven't taken it camping but it would actually be a really good little torch for using at night when going to the toilet etc.
I only paid £4.99 for one of these little torches which I personally believe to be really good value for money. There is nothing that I can really find to complain about with the torch as it works well and it is bright enough for everything that I want to use it for. Obviously if you buy this expecting it to be as powerful as a large torch you might be disappointed but most people will like me be pleasantly surprised that something so small can actually give off so much light and actually think it is better than expected.
I bought this torch after seeing a friend of mine had one; I was impressed with it and decided to buy one myself. I bought it new from eBay for £1.65, which included free delivery. I have tested it in dark circumstances, but now it resides in my car for emergency situations.
This torch is a powered by a hand crank, the user just has to hold the device then squeeze and release the handle, no batteries required! Because the LED's (light emitting diode) have such low energy consumption, just thirty seconds of squeezing will produce about fifteen minutes of light, in my opinion this really is fantastic. In thirty seconds I managed to get about forty-five presses of the handle, this was at a steady pace. It does not have to be done at a fast pace so there's no need to worry if you suffer from repetitive strain injury. There is very little resistance so there is no actual strength needed. I should note that it does make some noise when pumping because of the moving cogs inside, but it is nothing excessive.
Once the torch is powered up sufficiently, a switch on the side can be pushed to activate it, it will stay on until the switch is pushed back - so no need to keep your finger on the button. The light emitted is not magnificent, it is by no means a high-powered spotlight but for a lot of situations it is perfect; it is fine for general purposes. For example my mother uses it when she walks the dog during early winter mornings, I have used it to inspect my car windscreen washer jets during the night and I will be using it when I go camping later in the year, also my car does not have a boot light so I regularly use it to see - the light projection is fine for all of these things. The three LED's are housed in a reflective compartment and the light is projected through a plastic magnifier, each help maximise the brightness.
The Build Quality
The build quality is not super high, but one cannot complain taking into account the average price to buy, it is mostly made from translucent blue plastic pieces and screwed together. It does creek in your hand if you grip it tight enough but nothing seems to be becoming weaker. LED's have always been very reliable so there is no real chance of them 'blowing' like a bulb. I recon if you were to drop this from mid-body height onto a hard surface then there is a probable chance of it splitting or breaking somehow. (I am not dedicated enough to actually test this out, sorry!) The hand pump feels strong enough to take a lot of use and I believe the device, as a whole, won't let the user down in times of need.
This torch is a great little compact device - it weighs next to nothing, its small so fits into bags, it has a handy string handle attached (wrap it round your wrist so if it does slip from your hand it won't drop). It was very cheap to buy and best of all it doesn't need batteries, it works perfectly for what I wanted it for, I am de-light-ed with this purchase. Highly recommended.
Have you ever had the problem where you have a battery powered item that you only use infrequently and when it has been left in the cupboard for any length of time the batteries go all funny? Yes? Well let me tell you about the green torch.
The torch in question is the Hand Pump Dynamo Torch and, you guessed it; we sell them in the RNLI shop! We have them in four colours pink, purple, yellow and blue and they cost just £3.95 each. They are also available from Amazon at a cost of £4.99 although these are nothing to do with the RNLI.
The torch is made from tough plastic and it measures 10cm by 5cm by 2cm and it weighs just 82g. Each torch also has a strap which will fit over your hand so you can carry it on your wrist.
So, if it doesn't have batteries - how does it work then?
Well this is the clever bit - on one side of the torch towards the back there is a sliding switch and when slid it releases a handle on the other side. You then grip the torch in your hand pumping the handle into the torch and allowing it to come back out - this powers up the dynamo. When you have finished powering it up you just push the handle back inside the torch and slide the switch back again to hold it in place and out of the way. This is really easy to do and would be no problem for a child or an older person to do. You don't have to pump it for very long to get a really bright light.
On the same side of the torch as the first switch there is another at the top of the torch which switches it on and off. When it is switched on you will get the light from three high intensity, virtually indestructible LED bulbs and these bulbs will last for 100,000 continuous hours and can allegedly be seen from a mile away although I haven't actually tried this so cannot prove or disprove this claim!
Being compact this torch is ideal to keep in your bag, the car, the caravan, the kitchen drawer, the bedside drawer - the list goes on. I bought one for my nephew to keep on their boat. Considering the price you could afford to keep one wherever you might need one.
Being dynamo powered with no batteries they are eco friendly and of course save you money. They are always ready to go so you know that you can rely on these torches in an emergency.
So this is one I would recommend without hesitation, especially if you buy it from the RNLI because that way you would be helping to save a life too!