Michigan state police lighting

11b101abn

Senior Member
ANyone that honestly belives that transporting a prisoner up fromt is somehow better that a caged prisoner is completely incorrect. It is archaic and ponly serves to identify the agency as one that is to cheap and unconcerned with the safety of it's officers to purchase at least a half cage. Unbelieveable that anyone thinks that this is truly a good thing.


OH and MSP wears ties w/ short sleeved uniforms. Ghey. Not a bad agency, by a long shot, just like any other SP agency, more concerned with appearance and tradition than effective LE techniques and technologies.
 

FireEMSPolice

Forum Guru
11b101abn said:
ANyone that honestly belives that transporting a prisoner up fromt is somehow better that a caged prisoner is completely incorrect. It is archaic and ponly serves to identify the agency as one that is to cheap and unconcerned with the safety of it's officers to purchase at least a half cage. Unbelieveable that anyone thinks that this is truly a good thing.

OH and MSP wears ties w/ short sleeved uniforms. Ghey. Not a bad agency, by a long shot, just like any other SP agency, more concerned with appearance and tradition than effective LE techniques and technologies.


Well put! 100% agree!
 

marty

Newbie
http://youtu.be/tja9HKf7w1g

This is a video I Stumbled on, comparing the LED and Halogen MSP lights. I honestly like them both. The Halogen can be seen for quite a long distance down the road, but I haven't seen an LED unit out on the Highway yet.
 

lotsofbars

Veteran Member
LED's and Sealed Beams are both very good and have their own faults and virtues. I think they pretty much even out.
 

DaveCN5

Senior Member
deputychief301 said:
I have seen both in action many times and they had the best set by using the
seal beams with the Talons in the back window. Upon driving toward one of vehicles


on a stop ect the first thing you see is the seal beams then the talons in the back


windows. With new led bubble,first thing you see is the Talons in the back window


then the bubble.I have seen both in action during,snow and a sunny day and by far


the sealed beams out shine the led bubble with the true spit fire domes which are


not used with the new style beacon. I have alot of friends that are State troopers and


not many has mention tradition as far as the Lighting, maybe the old school troopers


that are making the lighting decisions and paying the high cost to change over.


There are some cars running around with the older sealed beam with out the spiltdomes


and this model is not effective as the spiltfire domes.The solid domes make the solid beam


look like tow truck with a bubble on top of it, so the spiltfire domes is a good reason why


the older Bubble were effective


Jim Rogers


Northern Lights
BS! No one pay attention to Jim about the MSP beacons. He has a biased opinion on them from past events that left a bad taste in his mouth before they even put the LED beacons into service. The beacons over power just about everything. I had a perfect opportunity to take a video of both of the beacons in action. The halogen on a vic and the LED on a Tahoe during a traffic stop right outside by my apartment, but I didn't think about it. They are too close to compare in my opinion, both are noticeable from at least. Good mile and a half. The light is also like a marketing tool for them. Everyone knows who they are because of those lights. You want a presence of a police officer? You get it with those lights. Every one knows exactly what they are and the department. It's a good marketing tool at that and it's probably what they are most known for. You change that, you lose your presence.
 

motionman427

Junior Member
Does anyone know what company makes the hood fin signs that MSP uses along with a few other MI departments such as the Houghton Sheriffs Department? I would guess that they are made by a local MI company but I could be wrong? Someone must still be making them for ones that break or just get to weathered. I know there are reproduction 80s style signs for sale on here but was wondering who makes the new ones.
 

jprleedy4680

Senior Member
motionman427 said:
Does anyone know what company makes the hood fin signs that MSP uses along with a few other MI departments such as the Houghton Sheriffs Department? I would guess that they are made by a local MI company but I could be wrong? Someone must still be making them for ones that break or just get to weathered. I know there are reproduction 80s style signs for sale on here but was wondering who makes the new ones.
There are a few companies out there; I'm not sure who holds the state contract but a local vendor did my department's fins.
 

WS224

Senior Member
DaveCN5 said:
Everyone knows who they are because of those lights. You want a presence of a police officer? You get it with those lights. Every one knows exactly what they are and the department. It's a good marketing tool at that and it's probably what they are most known for. You change that, you lose your presence.
Bullshit.
 

badge22

Senior Member
11b101abn said:
Um, no.

Spotlights are able to be aimed from inside a vehicle. The Spotlight is brighter and all around more flexible in its application. Takdowns and alleys can be usefull, but the Unity pillar mount is the all around better light.


I could care less what MSP puts on the roof of their cars. a single pod from the new LED vector in red, blue and white would be cool. It would cover the warning light issue and provide takedown and alley light funtions too.
Um, yes.


Since I have never worked in an agency with less than 40 officers, Unity spot lights are nice until they break after about 3-4 months.
 

CodeMan

Member
This is a perfect example of the opinions of bubbles vs Lightbars, LED lightbars, get rid of the bubble its outdated.. LEDs provide more light (looks at other threads) But the dept shows everyone accross the USA it works and works well.. All the new loaded LED bars are just that extra stuff to make one car at a distance look like a disaster scene, One point many have over looked is its obvious the MSP doesnt want to hide so the clear security bar look is out. High Visability is in, keep the hiding to the unmarked and the sneaking to the slicktops, as so many have pointed out. K.I.S.S.

marty said:
http://youtu.be/tja9HKf7w1g


This is a video I Stumbled on, comparing the LED and Halogen MSP lights. I honestly like them both. The Halogen can be seen for quite a long distance down the road, but I haven't seen an LED unit out on the Highway yet.

Great comparison video, notice the glowing roof on the SUV? Take me to your leader! :dielaugh:


the beacon has it hands down IMHO.. ;) :drooling:


Here is a night shot of the units in pursuit, plenty of light.

 
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arsenal10

Member
I'm not a fan. There are many other ways to honor tradition, such as the hood mounted stop sign. Time to move on.
 

WS224

Senior Member
unityrv26 said:
If you live in Michigan you know the red beacon is a MSP Trooper. It IS a Michigan thing.
That I don't doubt. What I disagree with is that IF hey were to change to another lighting concept that they would lose the respect of of the public or other law enforcement agencies as was alleged.
 

WS224

Senior Member
Andy L. said:
That seems like a well educated opinion WS224. :rolleyes:
Opinions to not require much thought. One glance of a gum all light in 2013 is all that is required to know it looks rediculous.
 

motionman427

Junior Member
jprleedy4680 said:
There are a few companies out there; I'm not sure who holds the state contract but a local vendor did my department's fins.

Can you forward the info on where your department got them and also any other companies you know of?
 

jph2

Senior Member
WS224 said:
Opinions to not require much thought. One glance of a gum all light in 2013 is all that is required to know it looks rediculous.
Not so at all. It may look quaint to some, but I can't imagine how it would look any more ridiculous than a gumball light on Andy Griffith's patrol car when compared to contemporary units. That argument could have been made with each cremental change in lighting, from Visibars to TwinSonics to Edges, etc.


Whether you like the look or not, MSP claims the single beacon is more fuel efficient than a lightbar. There's no doubt that's true with bars like the Streethawk, but I'd like to see the data in comparison to the Blade, for example. I can also tell you there is no mistaking an MSP car at a scene. The light is highly visible and you know immediately who it is. Nonetheless, I think the Unity rotating beacon is/was more effective than its LED blinking replacement. And, frankly, I think the LED flash pattern is lame. But you know who it is and it accomplishes its intended function.
 

dmathieu

Premium Member
I'm an old school beacon guy (as if you didn't know) and I think the old school look with the many positives of Whelen quality LEDs is a great marriage.


It looks pretty effective to me!
 

7d9_z28

Gold Supporter
Well, my $.02...


Lived in MI my whole life. Plenty of state police here, there's a post in my town (one that didn't get closed down)


The old, rotating Unity's are very effective. Pretty easy to tell a mile down the road that a state officer has someone stopped. Personally I don't like the LED upgrade, I have seen them and haven't been impressed. One of the Chargers at the post in town has (or at least had) a rotating Unity on it, and it was badass! They do have plenty of dash/deck/grille/etc lighting on them, but the Unity is unmistakable. I don't care if its tradition, stubbornness, or what.. I'm glad they are still using them.


LED lightbars are bright to look at, but the big red circles of light from a Unity are bright to look at AND bright to see on buildings, signs, trees, and everything else. Something about them just makes them more impressive and effective to me. They are like the big airport lights that rotate. I like them!


:thumbsup:
 

11b101abn

Senior Member
badge22 said:
Um, yes.

Since I have never worked in an agency with less than 40 officers, Unity spot lights are nice until they break after about 3-4 months.

Then folks aren't taking care of their gear.
 

badge22

Senior Member
11b101abn said:
Then folks aren't taking care of their gear.
Right. At one agency the Sgt. in charge of equipment flat said that he was no longer repairing the spot lights, since "we" break them all the time. If it wasn't for TD's and Alleys we would have nothing. Not as effective for illumination, but at least the take downs prevented people from seeing into the patrol car.
 

WS224

Senior Member
The problem with the data is that they had a predetermined outcome. When that is the case, it is easy to manipulate the data into supporting what you want it to.
 

Radarcop290

Junior Member
I think the Michigan State Police have one of the most impressive light packages in the United States. They have retained their traditional look, though as the article said, updated to LED lighting using a unique Whelen created design with over 100 individual LED's contained in the light head itself which is on par with as many LED's spread across an entire light bar on other police vehicles. The usefulness of the single beacon is the LED light is much more focused together creating a "burst" of LED light which actually draws attention to the light head and is probably actually more noticeable than a normal lightbar. The new LED lighthead on the roof coupled with the auxiliary lighting they install is perfect. I wish our agency would go to a similar package for our cars. The adage "less is more" is true in this case in my opinion. I was always a fan of the single 4-beacon Federal Signal 186 lighthead with siren housing underneath. Most agencies in Florida (and many others across the Country) used that particular light for decades on their patrol cars. I grew up in Florida and they used them extensively down there in all blue. Florida Highway Patrol used them and our Sheriff's Office used them as well. It was a very distinctive light with that 4-beacon "blip, blip, blip" that could be seen for miles away on a long straight road. I was sad to see those lights be replaced with Jetsonic's. I was a fan of them. Again, I think Michigan is actually on to something here. I wonder if Whelen would consider selling the lighthead they use to other agencies but in all blue instead of red for example. I know that Kansas Highway Patrol did some 75th Anniversary Cars that also utilized the Michigan State Police new LED single light on top. They painted the cars in their original design colors and used the new LED lights on top. Certain Troopers (who were hand selected due to their performance and exemplary records) were chosen to be assigned the new 75th Anniversary cars which went out to various Troopers across the State of Kansas.


New Kansas Highway Patrol cars have retro look | Great Bend Post
 

jprleedy4680

Senior Member
Radarcop290 said:
I think the Michigan State Police have one of the most impressive light packages in the United States. They have retained their traditional look, though as the article said, updated to LED lighting using a unique Whelen created design with over 100 individual LED's contained in the light head itself which is on par with as many LED's spread across an entire light bar on other police vehicles. The usefulness of the single beacon is the LED light is much more focused together creating a "burst" of LED light which actually draws attention to the light head and is probably actually more noticeable than a normal lightbar. The new LED lighthead on the roof coupled with the auxiliary lighting they install is perfect. I wish our agency would go to a similar package for our cars. The adage "less is more" is true in this case in my opinion. I was always a fan of the single 4-beacon Federal Signal 186 lighthead with siren housing underneath. Most agencies in Florida (and many others across the Country) used that particular light for decades on their patrol cars. I grew up in Florida and they used them extensively down there in all blue. Florida Highway Patrol used them and our Sheriff's Office used them as well. It was a very distinctive light with that 4-beacon "blip, blip, blip" that could be seen for miles away on a long straight road. I was sad to see those lights be replaced with Jetsonic's. I was a fan of them. Again, I think Michigan is actually on to something here. I wonder if Whelen would consider selling the lighthead they use to other agencies but in all blue instead of red for example. I know that Kansas Highway Patrol did some 75th Anniversary Cars that also utilized the Michigan State Police new LED single light on top. They painted the cars in their original design colors and used the new LED lights on top. Certain Troopers (who were hand selected due to their performance and exemplary records) were chosen to be assigned the new 75th Anniversary cars which went out to various Troopers across the State of Kansas.

New Kansas Highway Patrol cars have retro look | Great Bend Post
Again, whether rolling up on a scene or coming across a T-stop with MSP present, the LED Unity is THEE first light I see. The big, bold pop is nigh unbeatable. I'd put one on my Impala if I ever got hold of one! :)


Thanks for sharing the KHP link; sharp car!
 

davkenrem

Junior Member
Always loved the rotating beacon,especially at night, you can see it for a long way. I lived in Florida for 15yrs and Manatee Co. Sheriff also used them in blue with the speaker on thier Diplomats and Gran Fury's in the 80's. I'm guessing mostly those of us over 40 are the ones who really appriciate the beacon because we grew up with them. I'd love to find an old one in red or blue.
 

OldBlue

Newbie
If you watch this youtube video of two Michigan State Police units in a chase through the suburbs of Muskegon MI, you will see that they did not have any problem with traffic pulling over for them. In fact traffic was pulling over a long distance ahead of the units. You may not agree with the desire to keep their traditional look, but their lighting package is effective and offers no danger to themselves or citizens. I began my career with a single bubble (Super Beacon Ray 174) and transitioned to (Red and Blue Unity RV46 with Spitfire domes) light bars and then Whelen strobes. I think if LED bars are all you have ever known then you cannot see how a single bubble can be effective. It is all subjective, for the most part MSP is patrolling state highways and country roads and their lighting setup is equal to the challenge and in many cases surpasses their needs.


If you saw the lights in person you would find them very bright, often brighter than the local PD or sheriff's unit parked next to them (you will see this in the video a couple of local unit slicktops). The only thing I am not impressed with is the default flash pattern they use. I have seen some units that use a pattern that appears to be revolving and is seems more effective to me, but then again that is just my opinion.

 

Storm4200

Veteran Member
OldBlue said:
you will see that they did not have any problem with traffic pulling over for them. In fact traffic was pulling over a long distance ahead of the units.

um.....apparently not. the driver of that pick up truck doesn't seem to notice that stupid light.
 

7d9_z28

Gold Supporter
The first 1/2 of that chase was on Apple Ave.


OldBlue, are you in the Muskegon area? Im just south in the Grand Haven area.
 
OldBlue said:
If you watch this youtube video of two Michigan State Police units in a chase through the suburbs of Muskegon MI, you will see that they did not have any problem with traffic pulling over for them. In fact traffic was pulling over a long distance ahead of the units. You may not agree with the desire to keep their traditional look, but their lighting package is effective and offers no danger to themselves or citizens. I began my career with a single bubble (Super Beacon Ray 174) and transitioned to (Red and Blue Unity RV46 with Spitfire domes) light bars and then Whelen strobes. I think if LED bars are all you have ever known then you cannot see how a single bubble can be effective. It is all subjective, for the most part MSP is patrolling state highways and country roads and their lighting setup is equal to the challenge and in many cases surpasses their needs.

If you saw the lights in person you would find them very bright, often brighter than the local PD or sheriff's unit parked next to them (you will see this in the video a couple of local unit slicktops). The only thing I am not impressed with is the default flash pattern they use. I have seen some units that use a pattern that appears to be revolving and is seems more effective to me, but then again that is just my opinion.

Surveillance Van joining in the pursuit? LOL
 
I truly love the old Unity RV26 Rotators with the Red Spit Fire Lens (I wanting one for my collection). The current LED Retrofits are cool, but what I would love to see attempted is use the new Whelen LED RotaBeam technology in the RV26 that might be impressive.
 

EL1998P71

Senior Member
LightbarGeek said:
I truly love the old Unity RV26 Rotators with the Red Spit Fire Lens (I wanting one for my collection). The current LED Retrofits are cool, but what I would love to see attempted is use the new Whelen LED RotaBeam technology in the RV26 that might be impressive.
I think it would look good only with dual rotating. Single rotating has too much dead time on a slow pattern kinda like a old unity with one bulb burnt out.
 

CodeMan

Member
It's quite humorous to see all the beacon Haters posting their opinions on beacons vs LED/Strobe lightbars... You will never sway either side from their opinions. Looking at the facts:


The cost of JUST an LED lightbar is what, $600- $4000 /


The cost of a 4 lamp beacon is $150- $300.


So it would make sence to save money with all the budget cuts departments are facing to use rotator beacons or have them retrofitted with LED.. But in reading the posts the LED guys would rather see jobs cut to keep the neat looking equipment from what i'm reading IMHO.


We have all read the studies that show the faster the flash the more it doesn't register in the brain or could cause a seizure thus killing you or someone else. Or have witnessed two patrol cars on a traffic stop look like a fleet of cruisers on the side of the road or a UFO that landed up the road and as you approach the LED and strobe light bars blind the hell out of you which to can cause accidents.


I would gladly have my LED bar (its set to rotate pattern) pulled and slap a 4 lamp beacon up there.. I have the roof mounted Go-light up there too, roof mounting allows for FULL 360* spot light usage. some florida depts. mount golights on their lightbars and have the full 360* usage as well.. :)


I would say IMHO a roof mounted beacon with LED deck, grill, corner and tail bulbs . Would cover all aspects and would still be cheaper than most of the departments fully optioned Lightbars they use.


No one suffered a seizure or was involved in a lighting caused accident during this post. :crazy: :eek: :duh:


But that's just me and my opinion.. :cool:
 
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motionman427 said:
Can you forward the info on where your department got them and also any other companies you know of?
Hey Ray<


I'm on of the people who holds a state contract for the hood signs. The MSP is by far my biggest client. I also supplied all the hood signs for the MSP cars that appeared in the Need For Speed movie. :D Its how I make my living.


M-ski
 

BLUELIGHT

Established Member
The refitted light would have been better if the LEDs had been in an 8 or 16 sided frame and arranged in vertical rows, set up electronically to closely simulate a rotating beacon. They could have included white LEDs in the mix under a clear dome to simulate the Spitfire.
 

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