Sexy and slightly dangerous, small lasers join electric lighters in that odd class of web scams; good products sold in an evil way.
I’m picking on Shadowhawk again because I so detest their veterans charity scam, Operation Hero Relief. But on 7/18/16 the identical laser was being sold on several sites:
- Shadowhawk military tactical laser MAX MV; $69
- Ultrabeam survival laser; $54 (no battery)
- Nighthawk tactical laser; $70 ($56 + $14 for a battery)
- Galleon / Camplife tactical laser pointer (out of stock)
- Amazon / Camplife tactical laser pointer ($25, out of stock)
- eBay ($6.59 and up)
(I’m only providing links for the “good guys;” you can google the others if you’d like.) I’m showing the single-unit prices here.
What’s a fair price? For once, Amazon let me down. So I shopped for a similar laser from a reputable vendor, and came up with LaserPointerPro’s “Green laser pointer pen” for $12.99. Like the Shadowhawk, the LaserPointerPro is a 5 mw 532 nm laser, the maximum power the US government allows for laser pointers. It can make star patterns on your ceiling. You can torment your cat with it. And in several ways it’s actually better than the Shadowhawk:
- Uses two standard AAA batteries
- Has a pocket clip
- Costs 1/5 as much
- Isn’t sold by a scammer
The value of your purchase is what you think it is. And scammers are always happy to help you think.
Weapons-grade laser 8DDDD
- Secondary scammer NationLife boasts “Attach to your pistol or rifle to maintain a perfect aim.” But they don’t provide a way to attach it.
- “Blinds invaders!” Shadowhawk assures us of this “self-defense” laser. My guess is the invader either wouldn’t notice it, or would collapse in laughter, wipe the tears out of his eyes, and take your laser too. Wikipedia says, “Studies have found that even low-power laser beams of not more than 5 mW can cause permanent retinal damage if gazed at for several seconds; however, the eye’s blink reflex makes this highly unlikely.”
- NationLife says, “Nowadays it is very important to carry a Tactical Laser due to natural disasters, and terrorism.” You never know when you might need to give a PowerPoint talk during an earthquake, or take down a hijacker by setting his carefully-positioned match on fire.
- Galleon screams “Super strong, burns everything!” If this were true, it might be a disadvantage.
Other silly claims 8DDDD
- Nighthawk boasts, “We have the most powerful and brightest laser available in the world and still within legal US regulations.” This is true in a twisted way; the feds have set a 5 mw limit for laser pointers (not laser weapons). But it’s a good line to use on your friends.
- Shadowhawk touts “Aircraft aluminum.” This is the same metal that beer cans are made of.
- NationLife points out the laser’s utility for teasing cats, pointing out stars and entertaining children. How strange to read true stuff on such a web site.
Ultrabeam has found a new way to make their Terms and Conditions even more obscure; the Stealth Display:
A second layer of obfuscation is that nearly all the Terms document is about legal services(?), not lasers. This flak conceals the worst terms I’ve ever seen:
- You can only return an item within 10 days of your order date (not the date you received it)
- You can only return an unopened item
- We charge a $35 per item restocking fee (over half the cost of the laser)
Steer clear of Shadowhawk and their slimy ilk.
Those weapons claims … ROTFLMAO! But if you’re looking for a presentation pointer, cat-teaser or kid-pleaser, the LaserPointerPro is good. Also there’s eBay.