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Advocacy & Safety Cyclists should expect and demand safe accommodation on every public road, just as do all other users. Discuss your bicycle advocacy and safety concerns here.

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Old 01-18-08, 06:25 PM   #1
powerhouse
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When Do You Use Your Bicycle's Blinkies/Safety Lights?

I originally equipped my bicycle with blinkies and/or safety lights so that motorists would take better notice of me while out riding. I imagine that many of you have done the same. At the front, I've mounted Cat-Eye Beamer 5's that I usually run blinking. At the rear, I have three Planet Bike Superflashes clipped to my helmet and seatstays. I've used them while riding at times during sunrise, overcast gray days, being caught up in rain storms, or afternoons nearing sunset. But I'm not sure how well they can be seen at these times.
I don't ride at night.

For those of you who who are reading this, what do you have for blinkies/safety lights and when do you use them? Please Discuss.

Last edited by powerhouse; 01-19-08 at 05:00 PM.
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Old 01-18-08, 06:33 PM   #2
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For head lights I have a Niterider 12volt 32 watt Halogen dual light system... connected also to a Niterider LED taillight... with about 20 LEDs in it... it is quite bright. I also have a 5 LED blinky on my seatback.

The Headlight system has a flash mode that I use at dusk and in poor lighting, otherwise I use the regular headlight mode of high and low beams, depending on traffic and my need to have long lighting.

I have considered adding a headlamp and a blinky to my helmet.
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Old 01-18-08, 07:56 PM   #3
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I've got a Dinotte 200L headlight, 140L taillight, and amber 140L headlight (that I normally switch with the 200L for day use), along with a PBSF or a Mars 3.0, depending on the bike.

I run at least one headlight and taillight all the time in my neighborhood, even if it's a clear sunny day. There are parked cars on both sides of the streets where I normally ride which add to the visual clutter, and the shade from all the trees doesn't help, either.

I often have at least my parking lights turned on in my car, too, for the same reasons -- I want to stand out from the dozens of parked cars. At a glance (which is all that many drivers use when they're about to cross an intersection), a slow-moving car with its lights turned off looks a lot like any of the cars parked along the curb. I've looked into converting its headlights to Canadian-style daytime running lights; I may add "city lights" to the housings instead, too.
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Old 01-18-08, 07:57 PM   #4
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I have a L&M Stella and PB SuperFlashes...plus a 4DToplight on the rack of my touring bike. I use them at night, obviously, and during low light conditions - rain, snow, overcast, fog, etc. There are also times I will use them even on bright sunny days...at least the rear on 55mph+ highways, and even the front in flash mode if there are lots of intersections and/or strip malls.
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Old 01-18-08, 08:57 PM   #5
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Front and rear flashing all of the time (PB Blaze and Superflash) day/night, additional steady front and rear for night.

If my auto insurance company gives me a discount for having daytime running lights on my auto, you know they have to reduce accidents- because they aren't going to be giving anything away for free. Why not have the same advantage on your bike?
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Old 01-18-08, 09:32 PM   #6
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After having a close call with a pickup truck making a left turn in front of me as I was doing about 26mph on a clear day with no clouds and the sun high in the sky, I realized bright clothing (I was wearing an ANSI lime vest at the time) isn't enough even in the best conditions and added active high intensity LED lighting front & rear.

I have 2 Fenix P3D flashlights (one handlebar mounted and one helmet mounted) and a Cygolite Tridenx (handlebar mounted) facing forward, and 2 Dinotte 140Ls, a PB Superflash, and a Viewpoint Flashpoint facing the rear.

During the day (even in direct sunlight) all of the front lights are in flash mode (quick flash on Fenixes, slow flash on the Cygolite). At night all the front lights are on steady mode. The Dinotte 140Ls are both set on the 5 flash/constant low mode day and night. They are visible even under direct sunlight and I have much less problems with oncoming traffic turning left in front of me and traffic from side streets pulling out in front of me when running the flashing lights in the front. The rear high intensity flashing lights help drivers approaching from behind see me earlier and give them time to slow down when I'm riding the low-medium traffic 2-lane 55mph no shoulder section of my commute.

The 2 lower powered rear lights are relatively useless during the day, especially compared to the Dinottes, so I usually only turn them on at night.
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Old 01-18-08, 10:25 PM   #7
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I use mine when it is getting dark and when it is dark.
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Old 01-18-08, 10:45 PM   #8
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I use my lights, blinkies, and reflective gear from about an hour before sunset to about an hour after sunrise, and in foggy, or heavily overcast conditions.
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Old 01-18-08, 10:49 PM   #9
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PBSF rear and two 1-watt LED front lights for all road rides in the winter, and overcast days in the summer.

And at night of course.
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Old 01-18-08, 10:57 PM   #10
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20W Halogen up front and 2 blinkies in the back. I run em whenever i ride.
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Old 01-19-08, 12:40 AM   #11
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Very Interesting for sure, for myself and my Giant Rincon. Currently I am using only a front headlight though am working on modifying the bike to have a light in the middle of rack and the panniers along with a rear light. I have only had the bike for a little bit so I am constantly improving as I go. It makes good sense to be apparent as things do eventually happen even if not by choice. After reading all the great information here I am gonna have to do a complete overhaul of my lighting systems and it makes sense. Thanks for Sharing.
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Old 01-19-08, 01:15 AM   #12
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Here's a shot of my Randonneuring setup.

.
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Old 01-19-08, 04:02 AM   #13
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I run my headlights during the day. Drivers glancing before turning might look twice, and of course, I expect the unexpected.
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Old 01-19-08, 08:49 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Machka View Post
Here's a shot of my Randonneuring setup.

.
Any more than that and people will think you're straight out of Tron.
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Old 01-19-08, 09:25 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffB502 View Post
After having a close call with a pickup truck making a left turn in front of me as I was doing about 26mph on a clear day with no clouds and the sun high in the sky, I realized bright clothing (I was wearing an ANSI lime vest at the time) isn't enough even in the best conditions and added active high intensity LED lighting front & rear.

I have 2 Fenix P3D flashlights (one handlebar mounted and one helmet mounted) and a Cygolite Tridenx (handlebar mounted) facing forward, and 2 Dinotte 140Ls, a PB Superflash, and a Viewpoint Flashpoint facing the rear.
Holy crap!!

How often do you hear screeching tires and breaking glass behind you?
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Old 01-19-08, 09:27 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Machka View Post
Here's a shot of my Randonneuring setup.

.
You need a DiNotte 140L in place of the amber reflector on the rack...you know you want one!
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Old 01-19-08, 02:29 PM   #17
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I use my rear tail light all the time, as many roads I ride/train on have a dense canopy of live oaks.
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