Short and Long Distance Signaling by Friedrich Kragler download in pdf, ePub, iPad
Neither of these would be well suited for aviation use due to their size and weight. Their big advantage is that they last so long, all night in most cases. The edges are not sealed and they do degrade or delaminate after a time if subject to water immersion, as might occur in a water survival situation. The small ones will easily fit in your pocket and are so light as to be virtually unnoticeable. The reflective backing is not very good and both it and the mirror's the face is easily scratched, potentially diminishing the reflectivity of these mirrors and their effectiveness.
If the breech will not open wide enough to accept a cartridge, the gun should be sent back for a replacement. It is a lot easier to attract attention if you are equipped to do so. While not as reflective as the glass mirrors, they are the bright enough to pass military specifications and quite adequate. The best plan is to do both.
It is substantial enough to be seen from typical search altitudes. Neither is easy to fire, especially with cold hands or if the survivor hasn't got strong hands. It's the best, but is really far to big and heavy for typical aviation use. If you're flying over water, make sure you pack it inside a waterproof pouch or case.
If it doesn't appeal to you, then be sure to make other arrangements. Being less cumbersome, the lightweight mirrors are more likely to be carried and weight is always a consideration for pilots. If you accidentally sprinkle it on yourself, or drop some inside the confines of the raft, it will burn.
Note that the included brass cap of the new battery extends down quite a bit further than the original which was an integrated one-piece unit. Some of my volunteer testers ended up using two hands, one to hold the launcher, the other to work the firing pin. Because it is so short lived, they really ought to include more than one, especially if using the smaller Skyblazer unit.
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