Anyone know where to get or how to make a strap from a seatbelt for handlights. Have decided I am done having a light hanging off the front of my coat and think I would like to try this set up. Thanks for the help.
Seatbelts are not a good idea - the nylon strap will melt at relatively low temperatures.
You can use a leather radio strap with the snap-lock ends to carry several different light styles including the Light Boxes, Pelican dive lights, and several of the Everready work lights that can be purchased cheaply at Home Depot or Lowe's.
Nylon will melt a around 450 degress, true. However, if your chest is that hot, it was already time to get out a long time ago and your flashlight is the least of your concerns. All the lantern style lights on the market come with some sort of nylon strap, the clips on radio straps would break too easily anyhow. If you really want to try seatbelts, go to a local junkyard and ask for them. You might be surprised that they would be willing to let you have them once you tell them what it is for. The streamlight straps are available with buckle already also.
I was going to say that the newer Streamlights have snap-straps already; the straps should be available as replacement parts from your favorite dealer. Perhaps more expensive than auto seat belts, but probably a bit smaller and lighter, made for the purpose.
Nylon will turn to taffy and drop the light at temperatures much lower than 450 degrees, so carrying a substance that can melt and even burn into a fire isn't a good idea. Nylon is rated for sustained max temperatures of less than 170 degrees F without losing strength. Those temps are common at the floor level in interior structural fires. Leather is much more heat-resistant and has way better thermal resistance, both lnog-term and short-term.
The metal clips on the leather radio straps do not break easily - I've been carrying my portable radio on mine in all kinds of conditions for around 6 years and the strap and clips are going strong. You might be thinking of a different clip type than the steel ones on the New York-type leather radio straps.
I've seen several of the LiteBox nylon straps melted. We changed to the right-angle lights to avoid that problem - Streamlights on the engines, quints, and trucks and Big Eds for the heavy rescue and Training.
My previous department melted a few nylon straps, too. One of the reasons some folks use the seatbelts is that they're so easy and cheap to replace when they melt.
This is the same strap that I sell all the time. These clips are meant to carry the weight of a radio, not a lightbox. If this is what you need, use an old belt. I too have never seen or heard of anyone melting the strap off of their light.
i have used nylon straps to carry 2 1/2 gallon exts. into structural fires....the can weighs about five times more than a handlight....i have never seen a strap melt ...its also alot easier to cut if it gets snagged on something...i say use the nylon seat belt
Straps don't work for me they fall off my shoulder all the time, it gets annoying. What I do is: 2 caribeaners non locking, one is clipped on to the harness of my scba lowest part near the waist strap, the other is clipped to the front "d" clip of the box lite, when I grab the lite, I just clip it to the other caribeaner and it stays on my side, if I need to take it off just reach back and unclip.... Also you can use the caribeaner on the box lite clip it through the waist strap... If you need to take it off and fumble with the caribeaner you can unclip the waist buckle, slide the box lite off...
works for me it's on my side, points straight out, if I need to take it off it's one hand unclip and done....
Carrying a handlight is a proven true good idea, but I would hesitate in giving up the light on the front of my coat. For us, we just ordered new Streamlights that come with a strap. If I were you, I would try the leather radio strap idea vs. the strap from your local equipment dealer and see which one works best for you and your members. I would recommend staying away from the seatbelts because of the intolerance to heat.