Glow-On, Again...
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Old 11-02-2010, 06:18 PM   #1
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Default Glow-On, Again...

Before I begin, let me just point out that I was not one of the group of FTF SM's who received a free sample of Glow-On for testing purposes. I bought and paid for my own "kit" through their web site. And when I spend hard earned money... well, you know.
That said -- here are some observations I made regarding Glow-On:

My first test subjects are a matching pair of pistols, and a couple of common flashlights. The pistols are older surplus guns that have "dimpled" rear sight dots and a grooved front blade that are designed to contain a contrasting material from the factory. When I originally bought these guns and cleaned them the sights had some old, degraded yellowing paint in them. Cleaning solvent quickly loosened that material and washed it out of the recesses leaving me with bare sights. I had restored them by applying some Testors gloss white enamel (model paint).



I had asked Gato previously if I should remove the white enamel before applying the Glow-On to the sights, and he suggested to paint it on top of the existing enamel. So I decided to do a bit of experimenting. On one of the guns I applied the Glow-On over the white enamel. The other one I removed all the white paint, and filled the recesses fully with the Glow-On alone.

A couple of things I noticed were that if you have "dimples" to fill, the Glow-On will "sag" as it starts to dry leaving a concave surface. This is covered in the instructions, and you simply apply more layers after it dries to fill in the center area where it sags. By the way -- it starts drying very quickly and you don't get a whole lot of time to work it.

On a personal note: After I had built up enough layers to completely fill in the dimples, the dots had a bit of a lumpy, uneven, sloppy appearance IMO. I waited for about an hour for the Glow-On material to firm up a bit, then took a sharp blade and carefully shaved off the "dome" which left a nice flat clean looking surface, level with the sight blade. Just looks better to me that way. I let it cure for approx 20 hours before applying a couple coats of clear nail polish to seal the surfaces.

With that done I will say that there is a slight difference between the two (identical) guns now. The one with the white enamel undercoat on the sights appears to brighter - both in the light and in the dark, compared to the one with the Glow-On alone. Not a great deal brighter, but it is a noticeable difference.



My next test subject (Yugo 59/66 SKS) will get the same white enamel base coat before applying the Glow-On to the factory flip-up night sights on that rifle. They used a similar type of phosphorescent material on the issued night sights on some of those weapons. I believe that the Glow-On product is a perfect fit for that application in particular, for those folks wanting to restore their sights on those models.

Moving on to the adhesive squares / strips / dots:

At first I tried applying a couple of the smallest (1/16") dots to the flashlight. After cleaning the surface with alcohol and drying, adhesion of the teeny dots was..... lacking. After getting them to stick (barely) to the surface and applying a coat of nail polish to seal and secure them, they soon began sliding out of place. I know the adhesive is only to temporarily hold them in place, but it should hold them (I think) well enough to prevent them from moving after being coated with the nail polish.

An attempt to re-position them with the tip of my X-acto knife only resulted in gluing them permanently to the knife tip because of the nail polish sticking, and making a gooey mess. Using the larger dot yielded better results - I assume due to the larger surface area and more adhesive. The squares and strips stick MUCH better than the dots do.

So far I have noticed that I get several hours of "glow" from both forms of the Glow-On as long as it is charged with direct lighting. After sitting items in a room with indirect (ambient) lighting the glow is greatly reduced and time is short. Which makes me wonder....

If I'm carrying one of my guns (concealed) for the most part and it's not getting direct lighting, would I rather be using the orange "Enhanced day sights" instead? And is that product even available in the liquid form? Additional tests may be in order.....

That's all for now.
Regards,

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Old 11-02-2010, 07:44 PM   #2
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Yes, but............does it last 12 hours?

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Old 11-02-2010, 07:56 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by canebrake View Post
Yes, but............does it last 12 hours?
I've seen it last 10.
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Old 11-03-2010, 01:23 AM   #4
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Who the hell sleeps for 12 hours??

You only need approximately 6-10 hours of sleep a night and less then a minute or two to take care of any unwanted rift-raft, that may disturb your slumber. They will still be glowing.

Between a 24 hour period, them sights will get some exposure to some kind of light to become recharged.

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Old 11-03-2010, 02:12 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by canebrake View Post
Yes, but............does it last 12 hours?
The first night I tried it, I let everything sit underneath my desk lamp (CFL bulb) for a hour and a half to become "charged" before going to sleep. I got up a couple of times during the night and everything was still glowing. I checked them after 9 hours and could still see the glow. I got busy after that (naturally) and forgot about them so I don't know the full length of time they made it.

Last night I just left it all sit on an out of the way shelf that is shielded from a direct line of sight to the ceiling light fixture. The only light they got was whatever was reflected off of the walls and other objects in the room. Again this was about a 1 1/2 - 2 hour exposure to normal room lighting. When I went to bed I noticed that they only had a weak glow that I could see after I turned out the lights. I got up about 3 hours later and could barely see a faint glow from the flashlights, but nothing from the pistols.

So obviously the more light you can soak into the material ahead of time, the brighter they are and the longer it will last. I planned on doing more testing after I get the old material cleaned off of my Yugo SKS, and apply a new white base coat then the Glow-On to it's night sights. I wish I had some of the "orange" in liquid form to compare the two, because the orange dots take a "charge" much more quickly but don't last very long. I'm thinking the orange "daytime" stuff may be better for a gun that's going to be concealed most of the time and out of any strong light path. The dots are a bit too thick for my tastes though....

Just thinking out loud.
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Old 11-03-2010, 05:27 AM   #6
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Looks as though you did your flashlight up the same as I did. Works good especially when the power goes out on you. Also glows all night on the stand next to the bed.

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Old 11-03-2010, 05:32 AM   #7
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I hit my sights with the tac light for a few seconds right before bed and they glow all night.

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Old 11-03-2010, 05:45 AM   #8
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I like my tritium night sights on my duty rig but I have found they really don't matter anyway. point shooting has served me well.

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Old 11-03-2010, 06:07 AM   #9
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I'm still a non-believer. Unless this stuff is an entirely new formulation of strontium aluminate........or it rocks a Geiger-Müller counter off scale, 12 hrs is a real stretch.

I'm not doubting your tests, I'm just an old man with fixed experiences.

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Old 11-03-2010, 06:11 AM   #10
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I haven't tested it to twelve hours myself cane. My testing was from the time I went to bed till I awake in the wee hours of the morning. It works for those times when I would need it.

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