Sustaining Member of the Month - December 2015
SureFire is an American success story—an example of what can be accomplished through innovation, hard work, and adhering to core principles. What started over 35 years ago as a small startup has grown into an industry-leading manufacturer of the world’s finest illumination tools and tactical products to support those who go in harm’s way. SureFire’s reputation for creating products with unmatched performance and durability has been built by word-of-mouth from some of the toughest men and women on Earth.
The story began in 1979 when cutting-edge laser expert Dr. John Matthews filed for several patents for laser-aiming devices for firearms. Combining his two passions—lasers and shooting—John and a few others who shared his vision broke away from the Newport Corporation, a successful industrial-laser company John had founded, to form Laser Products (LP), the precursor to SureFire. Their first commercial product was a laser sight for the Colt Trooper, followed by sights for the Ruger Mini-14 and the Colt M16. Then, in1984, Laser Products provided LAPD SWAT with laser sights for shotguns used for security at the Los Angeles Summer Olympics. They were a hit, and word quickly spread throughout the law enforcement community. That same year, a Laser Products’ red-laser sight appeared on Schwarzenegger’s pistol in the iconic film The Terminator.
Laser Products began focusing on compact, powerful weapon-mounted lights to provide military/law enforcement professionals with a tactical advantage in low-light conditions. In 1986, the company developed the first fully integrated forend light for shotguns; that same year, the first pistol-mounted light was released. In 1988, LP applied WeaponLight technology to handheld lights, elevating the common flashlight to whole new heights. The Model 6C was the world’s first compact, high-intensity flashlight, producing 3-times the output of a typical D-cell flashlight at less than half the size. With the addition of the now iconic tactical tailcap switch, the revolutionary 6P® Original was born. It remains the model for virtually every tactical flashlight ever produced.
Laser Products soon released an entire line of illumination tools under the “SureFire” brand name, incorporating cutting-edge technology, innovative design, the finest materials and components, and state-of-the-art manufacturing—all performed in the U.S. to ensure quality. The SureFire name became so synonymous with the company that, in 2001, Laser Products became SureFire, LLC. As SureFire’s reputation grew, so did its product line. And their commitment to innovation was no slogan but a way of life. The growth of the handheld and weapon-mounted lights has been sustained by continuously incorporating the latest technology resulting from millions of dollars invested in R&D. SureFire illumination tools include patented, cutting-edge optics like TIR lenses, custom parabolic reflectors, and new multi-faceted reflectors that create a wide MaxVision Beam™. Top-shelf, microprocessor-controlled LEDs capable of generating thousands of lumens of light are now the norm, and many SureFire lights offer multiple output levels or even produce white and infrared light with no filter required. And they even launched the SureFire Institute to teach low-light tactics that have influenced a generation of law enforcement and military professionals.
In 2005, SureFire created hands-free illumination by introducing a rugged line of Helmet Lights intended for military personnel; they included IFF beacons. That was followed by a complete line of hardcore LED headlamps, which all featured a broad, perfect MaxVision Beam™. In 2012, SureFire created another entirely new category of illumination tool: the 2211 WristLights. These ingenious wrist-mounted lights provide hands-free, tactical-level illumination from a rugged, lightweight unit strapped to the wrist. Developed for law enforcement, available to all.
The SureFire Suppressor Division was launched in 2002 with same mission of helping to ensure the capabilities and safety of the warfighter. SureFire Fast Attach® Suppressors—along with muzzle brake and flash hider mounting adapters—were soon considered the gold standard in the industry. In 2012, the SOCOM556-RC suppressor was selected by U.S. Special Operations Command as first among all competitors in the most extensive, rigorous suppressor evaluation in U.S. history. The division has since launched two other suppressor families for the commercial market: the popular SF Ryder™ Series and the Genesis Series, which uses advanced V-shaped baffles to achieve unprecedented levels of sound attenuation. Best-in-class EarPro hearing protection and high-capacity rifle magazines were also developed to serve the needs of military personnel.
SureFire is obsessed with helping those in harm’s way prevail and get home safely, which is why they continue to develop groundbreaking products. Substantial investments in R&D, over 150 patents, 40+ patents pending, and dozens of engineers and designers are all proof of this unwavering commitment to innovation and safety. And it’s all backed by the promise to continue design, build, and perfect their high-quality products in the United States.