A question we frequently see is what Surefire Scout tape switches will work with which lights and what advantages there are for each. This post will help you decide which assembly may work best for your needs and should give you a better understanding of all the options out there. If you have any other questions or need clarification, please feel free to reach out to us. CustomerService@BigTexOutdoors.com
This part is easy. Right now, every surefire scout tailcap and tape switch combo will work with every Surefire Scout. This includes the M300, M600U, M300V, M600V & the M600DF. They’re 100 % interchangeable as far as tailcaps and switches are concerned. (It should be noted that Surefire changed the thread pitch of the UE tailcaps around 2014-2015 and these older caps won’t fit the new Scout or Modlite lights. If you contact Surefire, they will send you the new tailcap.)
It is important to note that head on the M600DF is larger and will not work on the previous generations of Scout lights.
If you have the older Millennium Series (M951, M961 etc) of Surefire weapon lights the tailcaps will be a different size from the Scout series of lights. The tape switches will be interchangeable but the tailcaps will not work. (These lights require the XM tailcap covered near the end of this article.)
The Surefire M952 light with XM07 tailcap and IR filter.
Modlite LED lights are purpose driven high output lights that are powered by either an 18350 or 18650 rechargeable battery and their heads will work on Surefire M600DF and M640DF lights. They also use the Scout Tailcaps discussed in this guide. We have several articles that compare Modlite lights against Surefire & Cloud Defensive lights.
–For a discussion on features, mounts and pricing, CLICK HERE
–For beam comparison pictures CLICK HERE
If you plan to use a tape switch with a Modlite light, it is recommended that you use either the Unity Hot Button or Modlite Mod Button. The current Surefire switches do not provide enough power for the lights to run at their maximum output. It’s still safe to use and the lights will still be VERY bright, but the output will be slightly reduced.
Update: 10/07/2020: Modlite ModButton Lite (MB-L)
In October 2020 Modlite introduced a new, simpler version of the famous ModButton tape switch available exclusively at Big Tex Outdoors. The Modbutton Lite uses the same switch technology as the original ModButton but at a reduced cost. Constructed with injection-molded plastic and fully potted, the Mod Button Lite is an excellent choice when you don’t need the integrated mount. It’s available in 4.5” & 7” lengths as well as black and FDE.
The Mod Button Lite has the same high power cable as the original Mod Button and Unity Hot Buttons and it. It allows the Modlite & M600DF/M640DF lights to perform at their maximum output. It is a momentary only switch. Use of a tailcap with a constant on button (Surefire DS00) is usually preferred.
The Modbutton Lite is also available with a laser plug for use with Steiner, Eotech, Holosun and other visible/IR aiming devices.
Update: 4/20/2020: Unity Hot Button & Mod Button
Unity Tactical recently released a new tape switch designed for use with all Surefire tailcaps. There are several versions available. First is mount style. They are available with your choice of picatiny or MLOK mounts and you can select cable that is compatible with Surefire, Streamlight or Laser (L3, Steiner, Holosun, MAWL etc). You can also select a dual lead option that will activate a laser and light at the same time. A VERY important feature of the Hot Button ( & Mod Button discussed below) is that their cables are thicker than the current generation Surefire switches and are capable of providing enough power to allow modern high output lights like the Modlite & Surefire M600DF/M640DF lights to run at their maximum output. With technology advancing at a rapid pace the lights are only going to get brighter and will require more power. The Unity Hot Button & Modlite Mod Button are capable of providing the needed power for lights built for the 21st century.
The Hot Button is a constant on “clicky” type switch and the cable is 9″ long.
Modlite introduced a new tape switch with an integrated mount that will work with all Surefire Scout tail caps. Similar to the Unity Hot Button, it has a larger cable that is capable of allowing the Modlite & M600DF/M640DF lights to preform at their maximum output. The Modlite Mod Button comes in any color you want as long as it’s black. The tape switch is 4″ long (which is average) and is a momentary only switch. The integrated mount will fit on any picatinny rail and is also compatible with the Unity Tactical Light Wing Adapter to push the light out further if needed. It can be used on the left or right side of the rifle and is backed by Modlite’s full warranty.
Tape Switch Comparison
First let’s discuss the tape switch options. You can buy the tailcaps and switches by themselves or as a combo (which we will cover later) but for now we’ll isolate the caps and switches so you can know what each does. Right now there’s currently (3) tape switch styles in production.
- ST series
- SR Series
- SR-D-IT Series
The ST tape switches are available in several lengths with the most popular one being 7 inches. This is a single function tape switch that is momentary only. The latest version has some improvements over the older model which include reinforcement where the cable meets the pad and pronounced edge around the pad itself. This makes the switch more reliable and extends the life.
These switches need to be secured to the rail by a mount like one from Cloud Defensive or Magpul. You can also secure it using velcro, tape or rubber bands but these are less permanent and less reliable methods.
The Surefire tape switches like the ST07 will work with the Modlite & M600DF lights but it is recommended that you use either the Unity Hot Button or Modlite Mod Button. The current Surefire switches do not provide enough power for the lights to run at their maximum output. It’s still safe to use and the lights will still be VERY bright, but the output will be slightly reduced.
The ST07 installed with velcro. Photo courtesy of Parker Mountain Machine
An example of the early generation ST switch
Next is the SR series of tape switches which are extremely popular and regarded by most to be the best option that Surefire produces. It offers the momentary activation pad and also provides a constant on button at the front of the unit. The user can easily switch between the two at will. The SR pads are available in several lengths too with the most common being 7 inches.
Another great feature of the SR tape switch is the built in picatinny mount. This rail grabber mount will allow you to mount the switch to any picatinny rail without the need for any aftermarket mounts or products. It also has built in channels for zip ties if you want to secure it further but the built in system is very secure.
If you want to make absolutely sure it doesn’t go anywhere there is a modification that allows you to use the Cloud Defensive LCS but it will most likely void the warranty on your tape switch. You can read about it HERE.
The Surefire tape switches like the SR07 will work with the Modlite & M600DF lights but it is recommended that you use either the Unity Hot Button or Modlite Mod Button. The current Surefire switches do not provide enough power for the lights to run at their maximum output. It’s still safe to use and the lights will still be VERY bright, but the output will be slightly reduced.
Last is the SR-D-IT series. These are for use with DBAL or ATPIAL lasers and allow you to activate both your light and the laser from one switch. The switch has two separate pads mounted in-line with each other and they are both momentary only. They have the built in rail mount like the SR series and won’t require any aftermarket product to use on a rail.
The Surefire SR-D-IT tape switch installed on a rail.
For tailcaps you basically have two options. The first is the UE tailcap which replaces the z68 tailcap (clicky) included with the Scout series of lights. It will allow you to use a tape switch and is available in both black and tan.
The Surefire UE tailcap. Available in both black and tan.
The other option is the DS tailcap which is dual function. This one has a clicky tailcap and also a plug to accept tape switches. The cap is a two piece, waterproof design that allows you to rotate the cap to get the perfect position for the cap. It’s very similar to the XM tailcap found on the Millennium series of weaponlights.
The DS tailcap also allows you to use the light without a tape switch
Now that we’ve established the different tailcaps and switches, we’ll take a look at the different combinations that Surefire offers. Buying the combos will save you money versus buying the parts individually.
UE07 ($79.00) This combo includes the UE tailcap and the ST07 tape switch.
DS07 ($149.00) This includes the DS (dual function tailcap) and the momentary only ST07 switch. (Available in Black & Tan.)
DS-SR07 ($169.00) This provides you with the dual function tailcap and the dual function SR07 switch. (Available in Black & Tan.)
DS-SR07-D-IT ($199.00) This includes the dual function tailcap and the light/ laser tape switch. (Available in Black & Tan.)
Tailcaps & Switches for 1″ Body Lights
If you choose to, there is a way to use a tape switch on your 1″ body Surefire handheld light. In the past this was a great way to get a 1,000 lumen light on your rifle (Surefire P3X).
The XM tailcap (originally designed for the Millennium series of lights) will fit any 1″ body Surefire. This includes:
Unfortunately they will NOT fit the new Fury DFT since the body is slightly larger due to the 18650 compatibility.
The XM07 assembly is available on our site and it’s fairly easy to find the XM tailcaps on the used market.
Tape switches on handgun lights
If you want to mount a handgun light such as the X300U-B, XH30 or XH35 on a rifle or PCC, the XT07 tailcap will allow you to run your choice of tape switch. This comes with a replacement battery hood door that has a plug for a tape switch (SR07 included). It also has the normal activation paddles as well as a lockout toggle switch to prevent accidental activation during storage or transport.
The XT07 includes the SR07 tape switch.
While we’re on the topic of handgun tape switches, there are also DG switches for use on handguns. These will activate the light when the pistol is gripped.
The DG switches are handgun specific but there’s a good thread on Primary & Secondary that shows cross-compatibility.