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Thread: Bar-end LEDs

  1. #1
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    Bar-end LEDs

    I drove past a cyclist this morning who had flashing red LEDs mounted into his bar ends. They were pretty visible, aesthetically pleasing, and having two lights spaced apart seems to convey "vehicle" better than a single tail LED.

    Does anyone use these, and if so, do you recommend them over (or in addition to) a tail light? I don't ride at night, but I'm looking for something to improve my dawn/dusk/rain visibility.

  2. #2
    RayG rgarza28's Avatar
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    I use the Bar-End LED's. I started out with them but I was not sure if people could see them because they were in-line with my legs. Now I've added a rear blinky and I use all three including a front light.

  3. #3
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    I use them because my seatpost is taken up with my seatpost bag and a water bottle holder for my two water bottles. They are pretty bright, and I like how they blink. You also can choose the option to have the light not blink too. I think I've got some visibility because of them.

    They are on sale at performance for 14.99. I got them for 9.99 on sale during the double points, so check and see if they're going even cheaper.

    Koffee

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    Several people I ride with in the early evening hours use them and they do add to visibility, above just a blinkie. I just got them: I'm in favor of anything that enhances the safety to our after-work rides, with lots of traffic hurrying home from work or to the kid's soccer practice, suburban roads with little shoulder.....

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    What kind of batteries do they take?
    How long is the battery life?

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    It comes with batteries. I don't know the type, but it's those flat, button shaped batteries, and they said something like 500 hours of use before changing. If you get the lights, you'll be set to go through at least 2 seasons of riding.

    Koffee

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    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by koffee brown
    They are pretty bright, and I like how they blink. You also can choose the option to have the light not blink too. Koffee
    I would be concerned that if they were blinking and driver only saw one (other blocked my body, etc.) they might think its a turn signal. Sure, unlikely, and if if they did I don't see how that could lead to an incident.

    Al

  8. #8
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    They blink pretty fast, and they're pretty small lights. If a car is thinking that those lights are actually car light signals, I would have to ask them to have their eyes checked... just in case. They seriously are not even close to looking like a blinking light for a car.

    Koffee

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    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by koffee brown
    They blink pretty fast, and they're pretty small lights. If a car is thinking that those lights are actually car light signals, I would have to ask them to have their eyes checked... just in case. They seriously are not even close to looking like a blinking light for a car.

    Koffee
    I figured so, but they might think its a unique bike blinker signal. I only mention this as I had a incident with a car at night where they thought (or later claimed) that my front blinky was a (right) turn signal and pulled right in front of me. You never know how poorly some drivers think and make judgements.

    Al

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    RayG rgarza28's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noisebeam
    I figured so, but they might think its a unique bike blinker signal. I only mention this as I had a incident with a car at night where they thought (or later claimed) that my front blinky was a (right) turn signal and pulled right in front of me. You never know how poorly some drivers think and make judgements.

    Al
    The guy could be claiming the lack of standards for bikes as they have for cars. Perhaps, someday it will be required to have working stop lights and turn signals. Certainly the technology is there to implement it and eliminate the possible confusion of a blinkie light.

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    I use those barend lights and find them quite useful; but I use them in conjunction with a Cateye 5-LED taillight.

    Just in case you want to know; I combine the above lights with a seatbag that has a reflective stripe around it, helmet has reflective tape, wear 1" wide reflective leg bands, xenon amber flasher on the front and of course a 12 watt headlight.

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    I wish I could run these lights, but I have barend shifters...

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by 520commuter
    I wish I could run these lights, but I have barend shifters...

    Could you get bar end extenders and stick them in there instead? It could work. Maybe.

    Koffee

  14. #14
    Chairman of the Bored catatonic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by koffee brown
    I use them because my seatpost is taken up with my seatpost bag and a water bottle holder for my two water bottles.

    If you have a "loop" on the end of your seatpost bag, you can attatch some cateye lights to that loop using their belt clip option. If you cant find that clip, some of the cheap Bell rear lights have built-in clips that fit those bag loops.

    Might be good just because I remeber how hard it is for some drivers to see lights like that...size vs depth perception and all....most drivers will asusme that intense red tiny light might be further off..so it's good to have a large light somewhere


    BTW, this is the bag I use, that little reflective bit on the back is the loop I was talking about: http://www.jandd.com/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=FTKB

  15. #15
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    FWIW: We have several friends who use these on their tandems with one light each on the left ends of the bars. It makes for quite a light show; early-on we noticed that the stoker's bar end light looked like it wasn't on and made mention of it to the stoker who verified that it was. Turns out, her bar-ends were not parallel with the ground and the light was obscured the little hood that is intended to keep the light out of the rider's eyes.

    Thus, the lesson learned was, if you use the bar-end lights make sure that the bottom bar-end of your drop bars are parallel with the ground, otherwise the LED may not be see as well or at all. Even having your bar-end pointed down a few degrees can abscure the visibility of the LED to motorists approach from behind.

  16. #16
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    After a dozen different googlings i only found 2 bar-end products.. Danlite and Nitezone. Who manufactures Nitezone? I did only come across some stores.

    Do you know any other products that have 1-way or 2-way handlebar end lights?

    Thanks!

  17. #17
    Senior Member Bolo Grubb's Avatar
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    I use bar end lights and a "planetbike" tail light mounted to the seat stay down low.

    gives great visibility






  18. #18
    Senior Member larue's Avatar
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    you may want to move the rear light to the left side, car's may use that as an apx of how close they can get.
    maybe I'm just being over-cautious though.
    Leave your treadmill power trip behind.

  19. #19
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    The concept seems nice, but I don't think I will get some anytime soon. Let's see the problems:

    1. I use bar-end shifters
    (and MTBs bar-ends don't fit on road bars, as it is not the same diametre) Besides, if I installed some, I'm not sure where I would put my hands.

    2. They aren't effective if the handlebars aren't parallel to the ground (dixit above). Well, mine are aligned towards the rear hub (about 20 degrees down)

    3. They aren't very bright compared to the Planet Bike blinker shown above... which is very weak compared to the Vistalite Super Nebula I use. And I use 2 of them near eachother in the city, more on the road (larger light surface means it's easier to see from far away).
    Michel Gagnon
    Montréal (Québec, Canada)

  20. #20
    Rides again HiYoSilver's Avatar
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    I use them, but I would NOT recommending them instead of rear light. The power is low. They are like weak clearance lights, nice to give better definition to vehicle but not enough to provide long range visibility. The main value I see is they give a bit of horizontal visibility when vehicles are 1 to 2 car lengths away. Might help having someone not clip you in poor weather.
    Hi 'o Silver away

  21. #21
    Senior Member Bobatin's Avatar
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    I have been using them for two seasons. I get about one year out of the batteries. They can turn on automatically when it is raining out. I keep mine on steady and flash the tail light if I am realy worried about getting a drivers attention. I was following one oy other ride partners when he had all three blinking and he looked like a construction zone. Having the bar ends angled down has not been a problem with mine, the LEDs are big and actualy project a beam up against the wall if you back your bike against the wall.
    So, if you're in the car, waiting impatiently. . . get over it - you're not that special.
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  22. #22
    Rides again HiYoSilver's Avatar
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    FYI- I set my flash back lights to flashing to extend life of batteries, but set taillight for steady. I don't think the construction zone look is well appreciated by drivers. It is harder to judge distances correctly with a ton of flashing lights.
    Hi 'o Silver away

  23. #23
    DEADBEEF khuon's Avatar
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    I just started using the bar-end lights this fall. I also have a PlanetBike blinkie attached to my seatpost near the top of the seat-tube so it doesn't get hidden by the seatbag and a CateEye clip-on blinkie attached to the light-loop at the end of my seatbag. I'm additionally thinking of getting a rear blinkie to strap to the back of my helmet.
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  24. #24
    I drink your MILKSHAKE Raiyn's Avatar
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    Bar end LED's aren't a bad idea. I'd rather have a functioning light instead of a plastic plug, but that's me.

  25. #25
    Senior Member vincenzosi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by catatonic
    If you have a "loop" on the end of your seatpost bag, you can attatch some cateye lights to that loop using their belt clip option. If you cant find that clip, some of the cheap Bell rear lights have built-in clips that fit those bag loops.
    That's exactly how I did it. When I ordered the bag, I was looking around on my bike for a place to put the light. Then it hit me that the logo on my bag wasn't just a logo, it was a loop.

    Sometimes it's the most obvious thing that escapes us!

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