Ok, so if you were around in the 90’s then you would know that the “go-too” corporate gifts at the time were Mini Maglites (2 x AA). At the time Maglites were THE torches to have and were the standard/benchmark, which many other manufacturers followed and copied.

Fast forward to now and you would probably be in the same situation as me and have a bunch of these little torches collecting dust in the cupboard and/or drawers somewhere. I have 5 to be exact! LOL! These torches just can’t compete with the new LED torches that are available now and are pretty redundant with their halogen bulbs......however there is a solution to reviving these long forgotten torch legends!

I saw a similar but older version of the Nite Ize LED conversion kits the other day, and was delighted at the thought that I could potentially breathe new life back into my redundant Mini Maglites.

So I searched the net and found the local suppliers ridiculously priced LED upgrade kits, so found a supplier overseas and brought a few in.
I bought the Nite Ize - LED Upgrade Combo II kits

What’s in the Package?


  • Push Button Switch, which replaces the original Maglite end cap
  • 1 x 30 Lumens LED light
  • 1 x plastic reflector (Need to replace the original reflector, as the LED is larger than the std. Halogen bulbs)




Installation:

The installation pamphlet is the smallest piece of paper I have ever seen for an instruction manual, but has clear and easy pics to follow for the installation.

Step 1:


  • Unscrew the lens cap off and replace the old reflector with the new one (The original reflector is smaller and the LED is larger than the std. Halogen bulbs)
  • Screw the lens cover back on
  • NB! Keep your old reflector as you can buy brighter LED bulbs which will use the original reflector.


Note: these brighter LED bulbs can get quite pricey!





Step 2:


  • Replace the original end cap with the push button switch end cap





Step 3:


  • Replace the old halogen bulb with the new LED bulb


Tips:


  • Make sure the zoom head is not tuned all the way in (See note below)
  • If the bulb does not come on, then click the switch to see if it is working; if not
  • Take the LED bulb out and rotate it 180 degrees and re-insert it (Click the switch on again to check)


Note: When you put the zoom/reflector head of the torch back on, make sure that it is not screwed all the way on. As with the standard feature of the Maglites, this will turn the torch off. So make sure it’s turned back a ¼ turn, to ensure the push button switch can work.




Pros:


  • Push button Switch at the back is more useful than turning the lens/zoom head to switch the torch on
  • White LED light (As apposed to orange halogen light)
  • Cheap alternative to buying a new LED torch (Just convert your old Mini Maglite)
  • The torch can still zoom the beam in and out
  • Extended torch battery life = +- 25 Hours (As stated by manufacturer)
  • LED can be upgraded separately for brighter Lumens


Cons:


  • The LED is only 30 Lumens but is far more powerful (+- 3 x brighter) than the standard Halogen (Brighter LED bulbs can be bought separately)
  • You can’t stand the torch upright with the new switch, but can still be used in the “Candle light mode”
  • No multi-mode switches i.e. brighter, dimmer, SOS or strobe function etc.



Verdict:

Overall I’m happy with the product, as it has really transformed my Mini Maglite into a useful torch once again. It’s not going to win any prizes for most powerful torches but I don’t need it to see things 1000m away, just inside my house etc. And I can still zoom the beam in and out if required.

For the price of a decent LED torch nowadays (2018), I now have 5 functional LED Mini Maglites instead. So for the price, its a great alternative.

I have placed my revived Maglites in my vehicles for emergencies and 2 in my drawer for that ever present “load shedding/sharing” in good old SA!

Note: If you have old Mini Maglites, that have old batteries that have leaked in them, DON’T throw them away....they can be fixed! PM me for details.