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Gadgets & Gizmos

From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Joby Gorillatorch Switchback combines lantern and headlamp in one

25

October

I just came back from a short vacation trip in the Smoky Mountains. We stayed in a cabin at Fontana Village Resort in North Carolina and at night the whole complex is lit by little more than the moon and a few scattered campfires. While there I was thinking the new Joby Gorillatorch Switchback would have been a very handy gadget to have.

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The Switchback is the latest in the Gorillatorch line of flexible flashlights and the first designed to perform two separate functions. Need a lantern to light a small cabin or 8-person tent? Check. Need a headlamp to light a dark trail or for checking the oil under the hood of a car? Check. The Switchback is both lantern and headlamp, converting quickly and easily back and forth.

It's equipped with 5 powerful LEDs, including a 130-lumen CREE® XLamp® XP-G LED spotlight. With 6 brightness settings and an adjustable dimmer switch this light is designed to work well in many situations. Using the included flexible lantern stand the Switchback can easily hang from a tent pole or tree branch or sit on the ground or a table. In headlamp mode it's rated to light a trail up to 60 feet ahead using two additional white LEDs for flood lighting. Two red LEDs also are included to preserve night vision making the Switchback a good tool for astronomers.

It runs on two AA batteries and has an expected battery life of up to 72 hours, depending on use. The included stand also can be used as a camera support for cameras with a standard 1/4-inch tripod thread.

The Gorillatorch line in general is a very innovative and useful set of lights. My favorite is the Gorillatorch Flare because of its cool magnetic feet and built-in red signal light. That makes it a great gadget to have in the car in case you ever have to change a tire in the dark.

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[Last modified: Monday, October 25, 2010 4:28pm]

    

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