Review by Mariann (Posted on 1/11/15)
When my 4 year old Chocolate lab came into my life this past August, she would run outside on the 5 Acres and I couldn't see her nor could I keep up with her with my flashlight. This Beacon light has been a life saver for me, I also thought it was hard to turn it on and off as well. So when my friend came for a visit and she said when you need to turn it off, just twist the top and it turns off. So that's my advice, I use the collar clip to help me turn it on then I place it on my dog.
Review by Rodney M. (Posted on 1/6/15)
Liked the old style better
These little buttons are frustrating, especially when your fingers are numb from the cold. The old style; twist to turn on or off were much easier to use. The only problem was the soft rubber holder which broke too easily. Maybe a hard plastic holder for the old style lights?
SPORTDOG RESPONSE: We're sorry you're having trouble with the button. It is difficult to push when first getting used to it for sure, but this is by design. We want to be sure that the dog cannot switch modes or turn it off in the field. The "trick" to it is that there is a plastic overhang on top of the silver button to protect it. Make sure you are pressing the button from under that and it will push just fine. It takes three full seconds to change modes and ten full seconds to turn it off.
Review by James (Posted on 12/12/14)
This is for your engineers, have given you a five star in "farm tested" above
Lots of pros and lots of use as noted in my previous rating but 1) If you use the snap link and cloth strap (because the lights do not fit on a standard nylon dog collar), the cloth that the used is a sandbur magnet. I regrettably forget this almost every time I reach down to either turn the lights on or off or remove them from he dog. 2)The "O" ring that seals the light is also a source for a future leak. Opening and closing the light to remove and insert batteries, or possibly just because of time, his ring expands just a bit. When it does, it is prone to get "pinched" between the light and the base causing a small loop of the ring to "ride out". Even though the light has been twisted into place, this now flawed seal will allow the lite to fill with moisture - and kill it. (This is not uncommon to "o" ring seals and for a penny or two - you could provide one or two extra, or just provide a bit of a better seat/groove to hold it in place). 3) The strap on two of my lights have broken off the base. Have resorted to just hanging the light directly on the dog tag ring, but this is sort of rinky dink solution. May be worth looking at.
Review by Bob (Posted on 12/3/14)
I just picked up three of these at Bass Pro. Paid too much but that is how Bass Pro is some days. I was perplexed by the switch at first. But after reading the reviews here I got it figured out. I have a huge, medium, and small dog. We live in the mountains and let the kids run at night when they need to go out. These lights are great. And yes, they are difficult to turn on and off. BUT!!! That means the dogs are not doing it when they are playing or running around the house. They only come on or off when we push and hold the buttons. This feature will save us a sizable amount in batteries. I have 3 different colors so we now know who is doing what where.They did not fit on the regular collars as someone else stated, but they do fit on the training collar straps. And the little guy now has 2 wire ties on his. All is good. Thanks for the good product. We appreciate them.
Review by J. Maas (Posted on 11/5/14)
Not too user friendly
I understand that it is designed for the dog out in the field, but hard to turn on and off. Will be breaking fingernails. I will try to use a pencil eraser next time. The light is very bright and we can see our lab when he goes out for the last potty break when we go to bed. I am sure with time we will enjoy it more, figuring out an easy way to turn it on and off.
Review by James (Posted on 9/25/14)
When I take the three dogs out in the evening or into the night, it is so, so nice to be able to track them and see when they are coming around the tractor or going out into the cattle. I have red, blue, and yellow, lights and can easily see from a quarter mile off "who" is where. (I'm sure I could see from further away but the rolling land won't quite allow that.) There are a number of ponds where the dogs swim (I have the lights hanging down off their collars) and the lights are quite water proof - so far. I like the common size battery (2032) and can see the need to not make them too easy to turn on and off. Just remember "six seconds" and you're fine. There are dirt roads near the farm and while I want the dogs to generally stay away from he road I feel much better at night knowing that they can be seen from much further out. Overall I am very satisfied with these.
Review by Diane Desimone (Posted on 2/15/14)
great while it lasted
The lights worked fine at first, but went out after about 10 hours of use. I can't find any information on how to change the battery.
SPORTDOG RESPONSE: We're sorry that the light has gone out. It's possible that the battery was stored for a long period and lost a charge. Generally these last 100-200 hours depending on frequency or mode of use. To change the battery, you turn the colored lens counter-clockwise and then lift up. It can be a little difficult to remove the lens. This is a safety feature to ensure the lens will not pop off in the field.
Review by Andrew Gross (Posted on 1/27/14)
Very bright but very directional and difficult to turn off
It takes dozens of cycles to get this darned thing to turn off, sometimes I get so aggravated I leave it and come back in 15 minutes or so to try again. The light is the brightest around bug it is very directional so you see it reflecting off tree bushes or snow sometimes faster than you see the light or the dog. It is very durable and when fitted direct to the collar has the lowest profile, least chance of getting hung up on something, than any other light.
SPORTDOG RESPONSE: Thank you for your review. We appreciate the detail. They can be difficult to turn off and on. The reason for this is that many of the dogs that use our products are hunting and sporting dogs. This often requires working in dense terrain. We want to ensure that it is impossible for any vegetation to turn off the Locator Beacon because if you are using a light to track your dog and that light turns off, that could mean big problems. For most people the small shield above the button is what makes it hard to turn off and on with your finger. If you use a pen or other slender object you will find it much easier to turn off. You will need to hold the button for 3 seconds to change modes and 6 seconds to turn off the collar. This is another safety feature to ensure the light cannot be turned off in thick cover.
Review by Laura (Posted on 12/20/13)
Almost impossible to turn on and off . Design flaws at at best.
SPORTDOG RESPONSE: We're sorry you are dissatisfied with the operation of the Locator Beacon. They can be difficult to turn off and on. The reason for this is that many of the dogs that use our products are hunting and sporting dogs. This often requires working in dense terrain. We want to ensure that it is impossible for any vegetation to turn off the Locator Beacon because if you are using a light to track your dog and that light turns off, that could mean big problems. For most people the small shield above the button is what makes it hard to turn off and on with your finger. If you use a pen or other slender object you will find it much easier to turn off. You will need to hold the button for 3 seconds to change modes and 6 seconds to turn off the collar. This is another safety feature to ensure the light cannot be turned off in thick cover.
Review by shane wilkins (Posted on 10/23/13)
I run coon/cat hounds and beagles, both of them I run the beacon on both. Great product!!!
Review by Mike (Posted on 10/21/13)
Would be great IF...
This beacon would be great IF it were engineered better to properly fit on ALL dog collars . The Beacon is bright, and works great. However the problem lies in the engineered design of the plastic case and the method in which to attach it to a collar
The SPORTDOG Package (and this website) states it fits on dogs collars that are either a 3/4 inch or 1 inch in width. While this is somewhat true, the SportDOG instructions doesn't specify that the collar MUST BE a "belt type" collar. The retail packaging prohibits the customer to seeing exactly how this fits to the dog collar
That said, the majority of dog collars today use "fastex" type buckles which will not slip thru the beacon slots. The design of this beacon is terrible. If you purchase, you will most likely have to also invest in another collar for your dog if you are like me.
SPORTDOG RESPONSE: We are sorry if the packaging was confusing. The Locator Beacon is designed to fit on flat collar straps, or be attached by utilizing the included caribeaner. We offer these collars for sale on our website and many of our retailers offer them as well. The advantage of these 'belt-like" collars is that the material will ensure that your Locator Beacon will not move while your dog is working better ensuring consistent visibility of the Locator Beacon.