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Preview – Solar-Powered Gear

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We Shine Some Light on Solar-Powered Gear — Including the Trijicon SRS — For Survivalists and Shooters Alike

We’ve been planning. Modifying our go-bags every few weeks. Running through scenarios and asking a lot of what-if questions. We’ve been prepping, and what we’ve come to realize is that all of this could be for naught if we don’t have one key supply: power.

If we’re to survive when SHTF, we’ll need power, and lots of it — be it gas for the bug-out vehicle, plug-in chargers for the GPS unit, or batteries for flashlights and optics. While figuring out the most effective means of converting our bug-out vehicle to biodiesel, we discovered there’s a whole market of solar-powered equipment for survivalists. The following is a quick glance at a whole world of products that need nothing but the warm glow of our nearby star.

Red-Dot Optic
We at least have a simple, if costly, solution for powering our AR’s optic when the end of the world as we know it arrives: The Trijicon Sealed Reflex Sight (SRS02).

The SRS features innovative hybrid technology that allows it to run on either a single AA battery or a photovoltaic cell, which automatically kicks on as the primary power source when outside in daylight conditions. This ability increases the battery’s life, meaning you won’t have to lug as many batteries in your go-bag or you can save those AA’s for other devices like a weapon light.

The SRS offers a clear 1.75-MOA red dot thanks to a multi-layer, broadband anti-reflective coating and 10 manually adjustable brightness levels (including one super-bright and three night-vision settings). However, a member of the RECOIL crew with astigmatism found the dot a little blurry, a common complaint about red-dot sights from those with vision problems. Because of its short length and 28mm aperture, the SRS offers a wider field of vision (23 meters standing 100 meters out) without the “tube effect” common among other similar sights. Also, it’s dry nitrogen filled to prevent fogging.

Preview   Solar Powered Gear photo

Backpack
While most go-bags should be fairly large to house three days of water, food, and supplies, a secondary sack could house additional gear. If you’ve got the space, the OffGrid Solar Backpack could serve as that supplement bag, with the added benefit of dual 2-watt solar panels.

Waterproof, lightweight, and durable, the solar panels produce a peak output of 6 or 12 volts (depending on the application). One hour in the sun gives three hours of talk time while four to five hours fully charges a typical mobile phone. The OffGrid also has a universal USB battery that stores power for use at any time, expanding its ability to keep your gadgets alive. The charging pocket can be removed and attached to another bag.

Preview   Solar Powered Gear photo

For the rest of this article, subscribe digitally here: RECOIL Issue 6