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Thread: Lighting

  1. #1
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    Lighting

    I didn't realize there were a trillion different types of lighting systems ranging from $10USD to $350USD. I tried searching these forums for lighting but I got 500 threads.

    In any event, I just want a simple little light in the front and something so I can be seen in the rear. I wasn't really looking forward to dealing with a charger, but it appears most of these lights don't last very long at all.

    I don't know how much night riding I'll really do. I just got my bike on Tuesday (04/03/07) so I've been like a kid with a new toy -I'd ride my bike to the bathroom if it weren't because the bike is further away. I've been riding at night, just for leisure. My actual commute would be between 7am and 5pm. So I guess I'd need a light for the occasional night ride and rainy weather. I really didn't want to be removing the light or making the light a central point of my riding experience. Just kind of wanted to set it, and forget it (w/o living of fear that it's going to be stolen). Maybe a rechargeable battery with a charger isn't so bad. And I don't want to pay more for it than I paid for the bike itself!

    Any suggestions?

    Thanks in advanced

  2. #2
    not a role model JeffS's Avatar
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  3. #3
    Scott n4zou's Avatar
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    $23.74 at Wal-mart will get you a Mag-Lite 2AA 3-watt LED flashlight providing 2.5 hours of burn time on 2 AA batteries, will provide enough light to actually see where your going, has an adjustable beam pattern, and you can use it as a standard flashlight as well. Use an EMT conduit hanger and a plastic handlebar clamp for mounting. Purchase a separate blinkie for use as a taillight. Here is my Mag-Lite on the touring and commuting bike.

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    Thanks, that helped shed some light on the subject . I appreciate the response. But in a sense it still kind of left me where I was... Overwhelmed with the plethora of choices and diversities. Although after looking at it, I think I'm considering LED lights above all others.
    Quote Originally Posted by n4zou
    $23.74 at Wal-mart will get you a Mag-Lite 2AA 3-watt LED flashlight providing 2.5 hours of burn time on 2 AA batteries, will provide enough light to actually see where your going, has an adjustable beam pattern, and you can use it as a standard flashlight as well. Use an EMT conduit hanger and a plastic handlebar clamp for mounting. Purchase a separate blinkie for use as a taillight. Here is my Mag-Lite on the touring and commuting bike.
    That's pretty cool -quite the ingenious set up. However that's a little bit more involved than I'm prepared to get. Thanks I really appreciate the response.

  5. #5
    Two H's!!! TWO!!!!! chephy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ruroni
    I didn't realize there were a trillion different types of lighting systems ranging from $10USD to $350USD.
    That range's way too narrow. It's more like from $3USD to sky-is-your-limit (but in the thousands for sure).

    In any event, I just want a simple little light in the front and something so I can be seen in the rear. I wasn't really looking forward to dealing with a charger, but it appears most of these lights don't last very long at all.
    If all you want is a light that allows others see you, you could get away with something not very powerful, some LED that runs on AAs (I have a light like that and rechargeable AAs - works well for me). But if you want a light that actually allows you to see the road, you're talking something more powerful (a bright LED or an HID) - hence chargers and shorter burning times.

    The rear light is quite easier to find. My recommendation would be PlanetBike Superflash - retina-burning bright and lasts a very long time (esp. in the flashing mode). The only complaint is that it is not waterproof (although I can assert that it is most definitely water-resistant, having been in some storms...). CatEye LD-1000 is slightly dimmer but still very bright and handles the water better. Then there are smaller cheaper blinkies, which are hit-and-miss... If you want the ultimate rear light, go with Dinotte - but that'll cost ya and will require chargers and all that jazz.

    My actual commute would be between 7am and 5pm. So I guess I'd need a light for the occasional night ride and rainy weather.
    Would that be in an urban area that's pretty well-lit or on completely dark trails/country roads?

    I really didn't want to be removing the light or making the light a central point of my riding experience. Just kind of wanted to set it, and forget it (w/o living of fear that it's going to be stolen).
    Well, whether you fear its being stolen or not is an emotion that's up to you, but stuff left on the bike unattended will eventually get lifted... especially if it's a good lighting system. To ensure that it doesn't get stolen, park in secure places or get a smaller light... I live in a well-lit urban area and use PlanetBike SuperSpot for the front (no, I don't work for PB and am not payed to advertise 'em - it's a coincidence that both my lights are PB, I swear ). It's relatively small and compact and it takes less then a second to pop it off its mount when I leave and pop it back on when I come back to the bike. I also have a wickedly bright CatEye HD-410 (I think that's what it's called... something like that) on my helmet - that just goes wherever I go, so no worries about having it stolen. If all the brightness you need can come from smaller lights like this, pulling them on and off really isn't a problem.

    I have less experience with more powerful lights, so I will let the rest of the commuters advise you on that.

  6. #6
    eternalvoyage
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    Check out this company; they've been making highend waterproof lights since their inception, and I can't say enough good things about their products. The quality and durability are high; the LED technology is bright and cutting edge; the prices are reasonable.

    http://www.princetontec.com/products/index.php?use=4

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