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TNR Shoulder Lamp

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TNR Shoulder Lamp

A TNR Shoulder Lamp.

The TNR Shoulder Lamp,[1] also known as the Personal Light Unit[2] or simply the flashlight, is a high-powered torch[1] issued to combat personnel in the United States Colonial Marine Corps.[3] It is typically attached to the Marines' M3 Pattern Personal Armor.[3]


The lamp is powered by a rechargeable internal battery, while the high-powered halogen white-light bulb[1] itself is mounted on a poseable neck.[3] The unit is typically[3] mounted on a dedicated bracket fitted on the rear left shoulder of the standard M3 armor vest, although it is also fitted with a carrying handle to allow it to be detached and used as a hand-held torch.[1][3]

Newer models have a remote neck, which is connected to the Marine's helmet and automatically moves the light beam to match the direction in which the Marine is looking.[4]

Behind the ScenesEdit


A TNR Shoulder Lamp (presumably a prop used in Aliens).[5]

In Aliens, the TNR Shoulder Lamp's main body is made from a Superswitch Intruder Alarm (catalogue number 6000) made by UK company Superswitch Electrical Appliances Ltd.;[5] these same alarms can be seen in their original form as door switches in the Hadley's Hope set.[5][3] For the lamp props, the keypad was removed and replaced with a plasticard panel,[5] the section with the alarm's sensor was removed and 2 plates were added to the back, with 1 covering a lowered section with information on Superswitch and the other covering a section with a tamper switch and the screw to access the battery compartment.

A handle from a Technisub La Spirotechnique diving lamp[6] (which can be seen in the hands of a salvager at the beginning of the film) was also added to the alarm, along with an arm from a portable video camera which, according to Terry Reed, was of German origin (according to Alien prop collector Harry Harris' website, it looks "remarkably like a lamp from the 'Reportalight' range").[5]

The lamp itself is a Reflecta video lighting lamp model 3002. The lamps were able to operate from both internal Ni-Cad rechargeable batteries or an external 12V power supply. In some costume continuity Polaroids, a long black coiled lead can clearly be seen. According to Del Bennett (who was responsible for the practical lighting on Aliens), the battery versions were only able to give about 20 minutes of light before needing to be recharged. This would indicate that multiples of the lamps were made, perhaps along the same lines as the armor costumes at three sets per character.[5]


Two prop lamps with rechargeable batteries from Aliens.[7]

According to 1st unit call sheet No. 2, there were 14 lamps total used at the Acton filming location on October 1, 1985; there were 5 250w lamps on set, while the other 9 were operated with rechargeable batteries.[7]





  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Lee Brimmicombe-Wood (1996). Aliens: Colonial Marines Technical Manual. HarperPrism, 30. 
  2. Simon Atheron. Props: Personal Light Unit [DVD]. 20th Century Fox.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 James Cameron (writer and director). Aliens [DVD]. 20th Century Fox.
  4.  'Aliens vs. Predator' [Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360]. Rebellion.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 "The Harry Harris Aliens Collection & Archive: Hudson". Retrieved on August 24, 2014.
  6. "USCM Shoulder Lamp and Helmet Camera Help?". Retrieved on August 24, 2014.
  7. 7.0 7.1 "Aliens Archive | Aliens | Marines | Apone | Marine Shoulder Lamp". Retrieved on August 24, 2014.

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