Here’s something for anyone that has the slightest need for survival equipment. The Eclipse Signal Device is an inexpensive and inconspicuous tool that can be used as a reflective marker or ground signaling tool. Kit Up! readers will have little trouble intuiting how handy it could be.
The Eclipse (pat pending) is made by Spencer Reiter of SAR Global Tools (blog here, Facebook page here; the website is currently down for upgrade and because it pisses the owner off more often than not). Spencer’s shop is near Ft. Polk, in the wilds of Louisiana. Before getting into search and rescue, firefighting and making great tools he was an Airborne Ranger qualified infantry NCO whose last billet before leaving the service was the Battle NCO at JRTC.
He makes the Eclipse from 2 to 4 tags of stainless steel, like standard-issue dog tags. The front cover is non-reflective, mounted with a ¾” disk of SOLAS tape (pretty much the most reflective tape on earth). There are colored front reflective covers available by request, color making it easier for daytime visualization, but you sacrifice something for that advantage (the colored ones are Reflexite B92, a prismatic tape that unfortunately provides much less reflectivity than the SOLAS).
The second tag, for signaling, is polished to a mirrored surface. The third tag is a clip, something you hook to MOLLE, clip to a pocket or whatever. They can be placed as guides too: smoke-jumpers in Oregon have hooked them on 550-cord and hung them in trees to mark their camp in low vis.
As a signaling tool it’s been tested out several miles during daylight (once out past 10 miles off the coast of South Africa) and past 250 meters at night using a Surefire G2. Field evaluations (some in operational conditions) have been conducted by a wide variety of personnel. It’s being used now by
members of the FBI, DEA, Border Patrol, Asymmetrical Warfare Group and several Boy Scout troops.
The latest iteration of the Eclipse has a fourth face. This one has a tungsten carbide reinforced blade the length its vertical axis down one edge and around the “top” relative to the hinge. There’s a small indent below the blade for thumb or finger pressure.
There is also an IR option for military and LE users. Spencer makes a version with glint tape on the front face, moving the SOLAS to the back clip. This is not available to everyone and must be requested.
There's a pretty good video of Spencer demonstrating the Eclipse if you care to watch. He may be eerily reminiscent of that one bad guy from The Hills Have Eyes 2 but he's a solid guy who knows his stuff and he makes a quality product. Contact him at sarglobaltool(at) gmail.com.