Tool Review: General Mfg. Stubby II LED

Aug. 7, 2013
Reviewer finds that the worklight is extremely bright and multi-functional.

The updated General Mfg. Stubby II LED incorporates two four-watt, high output LEDs that are 10 percent brighter than a 13-watt fluorescent worklight, according to the company. The LEDs eliminate shadow lines and provide 5,000K-color bright white light lasting up to 50,000 hours. The Stubby II comes with a one-watt LED flashlight at the fixture end. Models are available on cord and reel. Head kits for converting fluorescent lights into LED are also available. The Stubby II LED is made in U.S.A.

The review

Lou Fort, head technician at Huntingburg, IN-based K.A.R.S. Inc. is a technician that is serious about lighting in his shop. In fact, he describes the array of lights he has as a "small arsenal." How would the Stubby II Jr. stand up to use in a shop where good lighting is such a priority?

Immediately, Fort put the light to use. "My number-one use for the Stubby II was as an underhood light," he notes. "The light puts out about as much light as a 25-watt fluorescent in a package one quarter the size."

Fort also put the sheer power of the light to use by using it in place of his flashlights that have highly focused beams. "I did try out using the end 'Spot' light a few times to put more direct light down into tight spots under the hood with great success," he says.

The fact that the light can switch between a standard droplight and a worklight with a focused beam provided Fort time savings, because he did not have to use different lights for different tasks.

"One could say there are time savings to be had from having both a 'Spot light,' which is one LED on the top end, and a 'Flood light,' which consists of two LEDs on the side," Fort notes. "The 'on' and 'off' switch is so well protected, accidentally turning the light off is a near impossibility, which helps a job go smoothly.

"I also liked the 'chemical-resistant' housing on the light, because it made cleaning the light fast and easy without any clouding so far."

Fort was familiar with operating worklights, and found the Stubby II easy to use. However, being that the light has multiple functions unlike a standard worklight, using the 'power' switch has a few nuances.

"The Stubby II is just as easy as most all other worklights, once you understand how the power switch works," says Fort. "Push once to turn the 'Spot' LED on, push a second time to turn it off. Then push a third time to turn the 'Dual' side LEDs on and a fourth push will turn those off. Pushing the button again starts the whole process over."

A self-described fan of cordless worklights, Fort found that the Stubby II Jr. deserved a nine out of 10, even though it used a cord and reel. "I was impressed by the amount of light put out by just two LEDs, because this light easily puts out twice the amount of light as my other brand-new 13-watt, 18-volt battery powered fluorescent worklight," he says. "While most of us are used the small amount of heat put out by fluorescent lights, this LED (work)light puts out virtually no heat at all."

Fort was also pleased that the light was made in the U.S.A.

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