The Road Torq is the night time road warrior’s solution in the Eton American Red Cross Turbodyne series. Let’s try and decipher what all that meant… it is an American Red Cross co-branded product because Eton entered into a agreement to pay a portion of profits to the ARC for each sale. Turbodyne on the other hand is their high end line of hand cranks. Something that we noticed right away when making our Eton Road Torq review is just how well built it is. It has a heavy duty aluminum milled crank with super efficient cranking components which means you will be cranking less and enjoying light for a lot longer. It’s going to be hard to break this crank!
The Road Torq is a handy little device, the other day I registered a new car that I bought from another state and finally got around to putting the new license plate on at about 9pm. I decided to take the Road Torq with me and I glad I did. I cranked the metal dynamo for about 20 seconds, extended its red legs and pushed the power button. For the 5 minutes I needed light it did the job just right.
Placing the light on the ground I aimed the swiveling head to point the light directly at the screws on the license plate frame. Had I brought out a Mag-Lite it would have been useless as I really needed two hands to do the job since the screws were a little rusty. The only other real option would have been a head mounted light, which isn’t a bad alternative for an auto emergency light, but until I see a hand crankable headlamp I’ll be keeping this in my trunk lol.
As for the light itself it has a tight focused beam that was very bright (90 lumens). Again very bright is relative, it isn’t if you compare it to a $150+ tactical light but for its price range of $40-50 it is a very good light thanks to its Cree LED.
2 Minutes of cranking = 15 minutes of LED light and flashing beacon
TRUE, with a full 2 minutes of cranking (boring might I add) we saw 185 minutes of light on the brightest setting. Towards the end the light dimmed and was less potent but that is common when crank powered items like this so nothing out of the ordinary.
Road Torq PROS:
- Cree LED – 90 llumens of power
- 3 LED flashing beacon
- Retractable legs for stability, reflectors on each leg for visibility
- Adjustable head for hands-free use
- Powerful turbodyne crank technology, with aluminum hand crank
- 2 lighting modes; light on only and light on with blinking beacon
- Plugs into car cigarette outlet if you don’t want to hand crank
And the CONS:
- Somewhat pricey at $40-50
- 7″ tall by 2.5″ thick, better for the trunk than my already filled glovebox.
- No cell phone charger, maybe I am asking for too much?
In summary this is a very nice automotive light for a number of reasons, for me I simply don’t buy a light unless it is 1. Cree LED and 2. a dynamo crank. I hate picking up a dead flashlight when I need it, my daughter finds them and leaves them on so 75% of my flashlights are dead at any given time except for my hand crank lights. As for the other selling point Cree LEDs are great, they are a high quality LED that puts out some very good light. Along with the hands free flexibility I can’t think of another flashlight I would want in my trunk or workspace as the daylight slips away.
Where to buy
Note: At the link above the Torq may or may not be available, it appears Eton is making adjustments to their product line. You will find other eton products at the very least at the link above.