Thanks Dave! + Black Diamond Moonlight headlamp

5:57 a.m. on February 10, 2004 (EST)
28 reviewer rep
1,261 forum posts

Dave, I just got back from a four day backpacking trip and logged on this morning. Everything is running real smooooooth. Thanks for taking care of the problem and once again, thanks for creating this site!

If anyone is considering a Black Diamond Moonlight headlamp - don't hesitate! This thing is too cool.

It's the first headlamp I have ever tried or owned and I wonder how I ever went so long by clipping a light source to a hat (I hate wearing hats).

Make sure to get the newest model with variable light intensity. The thing is really too bright even on the low setting. While hiking, I kept blinding my hiking buddy every time I turned around to talk to him.

I ended up putting red tail light repair tape over the LED's with the lamp set on low. This was perfect light to maintain night vision and it also kept bugs away.

I bought mine for $29.95 at Campmor.

2:17 a.m. on February 11, 2004 (EST)

Re: Black Diamond Moonlight headlamp

the moonlight was my second headlamp. my first was a princeton tech headlamp that failed in yosemite under rainy & slightly icy conditions. the moonlight worked great for a while, but it started to have contact problems. it would only light up at certain angles. according to the rei in arcadia, there have been quite a few returns on them for just that reason.

i switched to the petzl zipka & zipka plus after the rockclimbers in our patrol swear by it. no more cumbersome straps & the retractable cord is actually comfortable. between 80-150 hours of use on just 3 aaa batteries which they include. 3 levels of brightness + flashing on the new plus model. they also sell clip on lenses [green, red & clear] to protect your nightvision. all at 65 grams. they are $29 for the zipka & $37 for the zipka plus. i gave the zipkas out for xmas last year & people who weren't too keen on the cord idea are now converts. they all loved them.

6:03 a.m. on February 11, 2004 (EST)
28 reviewer rep
1,261 forum posts
Yea, I have heard about wiring problems...

for some folks the wiring gets crimped and breaks loose in the battery compartment - a result of poor handling when stowing the headlamp.

If one has the ability and dexterity to work with wiring, it is a simple fix.

Sounds like the new Moonlight is pretty similar to the zipka in features... 80 to 150 hours, comes with 3 AAA batteries, 3 light settings and a strobe mode.

Just wish it came with clip on filters!

12:06 p.m. on February 11, 2004 (EST)
346 reviewer rep
982 forum posts

Ed, glad to have you back! Thanks for your help in getting the gliches figured out.


1:19 p.m. on February 11, 2004 (EST)
4,404 reviewer rep
6,005 forum posts
wiring problems...


It isn't just the wiring getting crimped at the battery compartment. My first Moonlight had the wire break (internally inside the sheath) at the headlamp. My current one has an intermittent break at the battery case. Although you could say it is "poor handling", it happens far too often for a headlamp that will be carried in packs on backpacking trips. I would say it is a flaw in the design. And no, it is not all that easy to repair. You have to have the right soldering gun/iron (Jim's butane torch would just melt the case), needle-nose pliers, etc. There are ways to handle strain relief on cables, which is something that is not done properly on most headlamps. BD, Petzl, Princeton, et al should think about this question. The headlamps are, after all, going to get stuffed in packs, so the wires will get bent sharply and repeatedly. But even the self-contained ones seem to have significant durability problems. I see lots of problems with Tikkas and Zipkas with the case not closing properly after even a short time.

I haven't felt like taking my current Moonlight back to REI, since I can just tuck the wire with the clip on the headband and it works just fine. But the needed fiddling is a bit annoying. Aside from that, the Moonlight is great.

1:43 p.m. on February 11, 2004 (EST)
28 reviewer rep
1,261 forum posts
you mean everyone doesn't own

their own soldering station?

I have had way too many years designing wiring harnesses and doing pcb repair I suppose. It sure looks easy to me.

Not much more involved than a field repair on a jackrabbit vibrator - but that's another story for another time.

My headlamp gets stored in my coffee pot... No stuffing allowed with my electronic toys!

The Newer version must be designed differently. Perhaps they finally used braided wire instead of solid.

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