I'm reviewing the Brite Strike LED Tactical Balls® RID-3, Rolling Illuminated Distraction and Disorientation Device. Awkward name aside, these are an interesting item.
The LED balls come as a set of three, in a black nylon pouch with a MOLLE-compatible belt loop and Velcro closure. They activate with a push button on the back, which is readily locatable by touch. Once lit, you roll them into an area and they tumble, sending bright light in several directions each.
RID-3 are a low-level substitute for a flash bang device, being less distracting, but much safer. Brite Strike publicizes this fact; they are honest about the capabilities. However, for situations where flash bangs are unsafe, or for civilians who can't get them, these are still a useful device.
In a dark room with a hard floor, there is both a rattling noise and the shifting lights. They roll for about 5 seconds, then steady out, lights facing up, to provide steady illumination of the threat.
I performed several tests. These are fairly durable, but they are made for rolling, not throwing or dropping. A three foot drop caused the case of one to burst open. However, it did reassemble and function again. In extremis, consider that a bright, spinning LED hurled at a threat would certainly make them focus on it, not other people.
The rear of the RID-3 case unscrews easily to replace batteries (Which are included.) They take two CR2032 batteries each. Brightness seems to be about 20 lumens (13,000 MCD with a 90º beam), and they are rated for 20 hours.
A military/police variant with infrared (IR) LEDs is available as a set of 5 with no pouch.
Especially if you have a house with a hallway with a hard surface, these would make a nice adjunct to your defensive kit. If you have stairs, the effect should be even more pronounced, understanding that the RID-3 may be damaged from the fall.
When not being used as distractions, these are still useful little lights that can be lowered into toolboxes, sumps, crates or other containers to illuminate contents. They can be set on the ground cloth, cot or end table while camping. They would work under the hood of a car or in a foot well. Anywhere a compact, up-facing light would be useful, they can be deployed. And, of course, they can be held in hand, or in a closed fist, with the closed fingers as an aperture for low level illumination for maps or gear.
The MSRP for the RID-3 set is $55.99. This works out to about $16 per unit, plus a little for the pouch. They can be found less expensively at various outlets. - SurvivalBlog Editor at Large Michael Z. Williamson
Disclaimer (per FTC File No. P034520): The author was furnished one set of Brite Strike LED Tactical Balls for evaluation. SurvivalBlog accepts cash-paid advertising. To the best of my knowledge, as of the date of this posting, none of our advertisers that sell the products mentioned in this article have solicited SurvivalBlog or our staff to write any reviews or endorsements, nor have they provided me any free or reduced-price gear in exchange for any reviews or endorsements. JWR is not a stock holder in any company. SurvivalBlog does, however, benefit from sales through the SurvivalBlog Amazon Store. If you click on one of our Amazon links and then "click through" to order ANY product from Amazon.com (not just the ones listed in our catalog), then we will earn a modest sales commission.