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Thread: Night Riding

  1. #1
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    Night Riding

    Since we are losing day light and it will be harder (at least for me) to get weekday rides in, I was thinking of doing some night riding close to home. Never rode at night but I know I will need a head light bright enough (already have it), tail light (already have it), and a reflective vest (dont have it and dont know where to get it).

    Is there anything else I need? And is there anything else I need to know before going out to do a night ride?

  2. #2
    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
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    A back up head light and tail light.
    [SIZE=1][B]What I like about Texas[/B]
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    Senior Member Street Pedaler's Avatar
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    I don't know if you have Academy Sports where you are, but I get reflective vests/ jerseys there. They're not outrageously priced.

    I do the bulk of my riding in the pre-dawn hours. This time of year down here, as the night time temps begin to fall, the deer become a lot more active at night and early morning. Definitely have to be alert. Also, hazards in the road that are easily visible and avoidable during daylight can be a lot more treacherous after dark. Even with a headlight(s). Just be alert, aware, and enjoy!

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    Middle-Aged Member MikeyBoyAz's Avatar
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    I am not much of a vest guy, but there are some nice Hi-Vis jackets at sporting goods stores... I don't like anything over the jersey. You can also put hi-vis tape on the back of your pant legs... that usually creates quite a sight. Riding at night here requires attentiveness to the road as the sweepers run in the am... and therefore the roads are covered in debris still... and watch for drunks.
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    Senior Member Seve's Avatar
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    You can get a reflective-vest at most on-line bike sites or for less money you can pick one up at one of you local safety supply / work wear type stores.

    That's where I got mine.

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    you can also put the high vis tape on your frame. Just put a piece of electrical tape on the frame underneath the high vis stuff so it'll be easier to come off.

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    I know you said you have the lights but are they bright enough?
    Most of my riding is at night and I started with lights I Thought was bright enough but found out they were not very good for other cars too take notice!! So I bought some of the brightest damn lights they make and what a HUGE difference it made for me and the traffic I come across !!

    I found a safety vest on the road a few years ago and have been using it nightly! I think is was a construction workers vest very light and visible with good breathability...So try a safety clothing supply store..

    Hutch

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    Travelling hopefully chasm54's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seve View Post
    You can get a reflective-vest at most on-line bike sites or for less money you can pick one up at one of you local safety supply / work wear type stores.

    That's where I got mine.
    This. They are dirt cheap and light enough to not cause any overheating.

    Reflective ankle bands are a great idea, the motion while you are pedalling catches drivers' attention. And as has already been mentioned, reflective tape (SOLAS marine tape is the best) on seat post stays or on panniers also works very well.
    There have been many days when I haven't felt like riding, but there has never been a day when I was sorry I rode.

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    I would like a really bright....BRIGHT... light for my helmet. Any suggestions?

    For on the bike light, I have a Stella 300 but thinking I would light a BRIGHT light for the helmet.

    Tail light is great.

  10. #10
    Senior Member mkadam68's Avatar
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    I was also leery of riding in dark (especially here in LA). Two things I also invested in:


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    on lights..... they ok to use in rain if I am riding and it starts raining?

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    Senior Member mkadam68's Avatar
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    SHould be. But check with manufacturer's, just in case.

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    Senior Member goldfinch's Avatar
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    I've been looking at this light: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...A2P97M9VQDMS1X
    600 lumens is bright. I don't know if it would be too much for a helmet mount.

    Here is a 300 lumen one with helmet mount: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...ione%20Bicycle

    Very Borg.

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    I just got back from my nightly night ride. I have been using a Magicshine front and rear for about three years now. Would buy another set tomorrow if needed.

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    gunner: any issue with rain with the light?

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    love2pedal has a hi vis jersey, same style as your red one...that may work as well.

  17. #17
    Neil_B
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    Keep in mind that riding at night in colder weather in New Jersey isn't the same as nighttime riding in southern California. Ice usually doesn't form after dark in LA.

  18. #18
    Neil_B
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    I've commuted and toured at night in the Philadelphia area and NJ. Latest I've been riding is 1:00 AM. When I've been out late I've tried to have lighting serve two purposes:

    - be seen
    - let me see

    To see, I used a Cygolite Night Rover dual beam light on the handlebar, and a Planet Bike helmet light. I might add a cheap light I carry as a backup if I'm concerned.

    To be seen, I had a blinker on the back of my rear rack, another on the saddle, and sometimes one on the back of my cycling jacket. (Some people ad another to the back of their helmet. If I was regularly commuting I'd do so too.) If I wasn't wearing my yellow jacket I was wearing a highway safety vest. In addition I might have a small blinker stuck whereever else I could put it. I put black reflective tape on my panniers, my helmet, and even on my shoes.

    The effect you want is to cause drivers to slow down as they say "what in the hell is THAT?!?"

  19. #19
    Senior Member goldfinch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chefisaac View Post
    gunner: any issue with rain with the light?
    I did check out the Niterider lights. They are water resistant and can be used in the rain, but they cannot be submerged in water. http://www.niterider.com/support/faqs/

  20. #20
    Senior Member Homeyba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by goldfinch View Post
    I did check out the Niterider lights. They are water resistant and can be used in the rain, but they cannot be submerged in water. http://www.niterider.com/support/faqs/
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    Senior Member socalrider's Avatar
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    For night clothing, here is a good site for many options - http://www.night-gear.com/

    For a reasonably priced night light, use geomangear, he is also a BF'er..

    http://www.geomangear.com/

    This is a popular light, 800 lumens OTF - 1000 lumen rating at 3+ hour burn time
    http://www.geomangear.com/index.php?...a0d6fuq0qbbqb5

    For tailights, there are 2 I can recommend - The Superflash and Radbot, with the Radbot being a little brighter.

    radbot: http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_nkw=....c0.m270.l1313

    superflash: http://www.ebay.com/sch/Cycling-/729...=p3286.c0.m301
    Last edited by socalrider; 10-02-11 at 10:49 PM.

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    Senior Member robberry's Avatar
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    I need to upgrade lights. I've used Cateye/Planet Bike blinky lights, but I think it's just me, but NYC is as bright as it used to be at night. The blinky taillight is fine, I suppose, but I need a bright headlight. Can anyone recommend anything from Amazon (I like free shipping)?

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    Senior Member maidenfan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by goldfinch View Post
    I've been looking at this light: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...A2P97M9VQDMS1X
    600 lumens is bright. I don't know if it would be too much for a helmet mount.

    Here is a 300 lumen one with helmet mount: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...ione%20Bicycle

    Very Borg.
    I have the new Niterider 600 newt - its a very nice package in a small, self contained unit. It comes with a good handlebar mount AND a easy to use helmet mount. The only real complaint is the battery life on high (600L) is about 1.5 hours, which is still useable for commuters. I use the light on medium (400L) and it lasts for 3+ hours and its plenty of light for city/suburb commuting. I like it so much I'm going to get another as I like light. I'd suggest buying the light at REI - you pay full price ($150) which isnt much more than the internet price (120 range) and you get the bombproof, take it back anytime for any reason warranty - well worth it in my opinion.
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  24. #24
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    I live in the sticks, so lots of curvy hilly tree surrounded roads. I love it... BUT. Night riding anywhere near commute times is a risky proposition. On the highway and int he city I prefer to drive at commute time as the drivers tend to be well practiced, but on the back roads they are so well practiced they know the exact line they want to put their car into and will often not see a biker until its (almost) too late. I've had more close calls during commute times then all others put together. So if I do any night riding, it tends to be later. Then the biggest risk is the idiot drunk teenager, but you can usually hear them coming.

    Also, try to avoid dusk. Dusk makes ithard to see anything, and your lights may not be bright enough until its darker out.

    Oh... and flashing stuff if you want to be seen. 1000 options out there, juts make sure it flashes and it will grab drivers attention better.

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    Senior Member iforgotmename's Avatar
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    I have magicshine front and rear, no issues with rain...and I have rode in some downpours.

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