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Question about MX991/U flashlights


tsellati
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Well I just hit the jackpot - I just got off the phone with Jim Bauman a 25-year employee of Fulton Industries of Ohio (http://www.fultonindoh.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=18). He was able to definitively state that the switch guard was not found on the MX991/U flashlight prior to 1973. And, better yet, he will be able to provide us with company documentation to substantiate this information.

 

Other interesting information he offered is that Bright Star, another manufacturer of flashlights for military use, is no longer making this style of flashlight and that Fulton Industries of Ohio purchased G. T. Price and all its manufacturing equipment direct from Mr. Price himself about 10 -13 years ago.

 

As soon as I receive the documentation from Jim I will post it here in the thread.

 

Tim

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Here is the message from Jim Bauman, Sales Manager of Fulton Industries Inc. in response to my question about when the switch guards were incorporated into the manufacture of the MX991/U flashlight -

 

Hi Tim,

 

I was just told by our engineer that we added the switch guard for MX-991/U in September of 1984! Hope this helps.

 

Take care,

 

Jim Bauman

Sales Manager

Fulton Industries Inc.

 

-----Original Message-----

From: Timothy J. Sellati [mailto:tsellati@earthlink.net]

Sent: Wednesday, December 15, 2010 2:26 PM

To: bauman@fultonindoh.com

Subject: MX991/U flashlight history

 

Jim,

 

I cannot tell you how much I appreciated your willingness to spend time

with me on the phone and to share your knowledge of the history of the

MX991/U flashlight.

 

Here is the web address of the thread I started on the U.S. Militaria

Forum regarding the provenance of the switch guards -

http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/ind...94930&st=20

 

As you can see, if you were able to provide us with some documentation

showing when the switch guard was introduced into the manufacturing

process that would answer one (of many) 'age old' questions that

consumes us collectors of wartime U.S. militaria.

 

Tim

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So, there you have it! Jim has been employed with Fulton Industries for the past 25 years (he started in 1985) and the switch guards were incorporated into the Fulton-made MX991/U flashlight just 1 year earlier :w00t: .

 

Unequivocally, a post-Vietnam War feature, at least on the Fulton-made MX991/U flashlight.

 

Tim

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Very good research and information. I can only guess, then, that Fulton either didn't have a military contract for flashlights for 11 years, or weren't required to manufacture them to specs?

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craig_pickrall

A lot depends on who owns the mold. If this was a standard product for Fulton they would own the mold but if it was a special product for the government then they would own the mold. For something like this it would be a multi cavity mold so the modification to add the wings would have to be made on each cavity. This is expensive work. If the mold was near the end of it's use cycle they may have gotten a deviation to spec rather than to make the modification. The mod would have been made on the next new mold purchased. No matter who owned the mold Fulton would want the government to pay for the mod since it was at their request.

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A lot depends on who owns the mold. If this was a standard product for Fulton they would own the mold but if it was a special product for the government then they would own the mold. For something like this it would be a multi cavity mold so the modification to add the wings would have to be made on each cavity. This is expensive work. If the mold was near the end of it's use cycle they may have gotten a deviation to spec rather than to make the modification. The mod would have been made on the next new mold purchased. No matter who owned the mold Fulton would want the government to pay for the mod since it was at their request.

 

So, to pass along some additional information I learned from Jim Bauman, it turns out that it was Fulton engineers that first pitched the idea of the switch guards for the straight flashlight to the gov. The utility of the guards was two-fold, first they would protect the switch from inadvertently being turned on and second it would prevent the flashlight from rolling off an angled surface.

 

The gov agreed and in Sept. 1984 the guards were incorporated into the molds.

 

Tim

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  • 2 months later...

don't know how much it can be useful, but i have a Fulton mx212u flashlight (the recent one, not the pink one), unissued and dated 09/84 DLA400-84-c-5089 that doesn't have the guards.

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  • 2 weeks later...
sharpsshooter
Should be marked as to mfgr... I have a GT Price MX991/U issued to me sometime in the '70s with the switch guard. Could be as late as '77. I saw both in use when I was in the army. Switch guard was a upgrade to improve durability. I don't know when they were added, but likely between 1963 and 1977. Having one doesn't mean it wasn't issued, but might denote when. Of course I'm sure a quite a few were sold to civilian market. Sorry I can't pin down a date.

 

I might add that anyone who would know with assurance that they had to be post Vietnam to have the switch guard, would also be able to tell you when they were added. Also, different manufacturers may have added the guards at different times.

I have 2 MX-991/U FULTON flashlights. One has the model designation U. S. MX-991/U in line with the switch and guard. The other has the designation MX-991/U inline with the lght beam and has the switch guard. It also has tan and black color blotches in the body that can not be scraped off. I also have a G. T. PRICE, with the U. S. MX-911/U designation inline with the switch and no guard. On the right side, under G. T. PRICE PRODUCTS INC. it has LOS ANGELES CAL. 90058 I also have a light with MICRO-LIGHT on the right side inline with the beam and on the switch side with out the guard, TL-122D inline with the beam. NAM ISSUE? All came off of EBAY years ago.

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  • 3 years later...
nagmashdriver

Tim,

 

Thank you VERY much for your hard work and diligence in contacting the manufacturers of the US Military MX-series of flashlights in order to find out when the protective "wings" were added.

 

This information, as well as other tidbits that you and other users have posted on this forum help me to be a better and more honest seller on the eBay and Gunbroker.

 

-Steve the nagmashdriver

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  • 1 year later...

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