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Old 08-28-10, 06:24 PM   #1
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Thoughts on the Blaze 2w headlamp?

I'm upgrading from the cruddy 1/2 watt version. Just wanted some feedback from folks who might have done the same or have this particular headlamp. From the comparison pics on the PB website, the difference looks like "night and day." I'll probably keep my 1/2 watt on board just as a flasher.

Of course I'm trying to stick within a budget, and while I realize the popularity behind the MJ-808 and other MS products, I'm mostly avoiding battery packs and having any other extra wires to deal with.
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Old 08-29-10, 07:30 AM   #2
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It's a nice light. Starting to approach what I consider the cutoff of cost versus function where for a bit more you can get a lot more light, but certainly a great "be seen" light. Upgrade from your current certainly.
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Old 08-29-10, 10:57 AM   #3
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I have two, I use them as "see me" lights generally because I like the way they strobe. They're bright enough that when it's dark out, anything that is reflective, like road signs or reflective patches on other cyclists' clothing will light up like it's flashing neon or something. It's quite something to see...this little town near me called Nanaimo has this giant sign when you enter the city, something like "Welcome to Harbour City". It must be particularly reflective, because every time I ride there it just lights up, flashing like mad. The sign is huge, too.

They are also bright enough to help you see the road, although I wouldn't say this is their strength.
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Old 08-29-10, 01:03 PM   #4
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Depends on what you need it for. It looks like it costs about $55 (without batteries). For another $15 you can get a P7 flashlight, batteries, charger and bike mount, and have a low mode that's probably brighter than the Blaze, and a medium and high mode that will put the Blaze to shame.

I bought a Magicshine light because I wasn't sold on flashlights, but since then I was talked into trying a P7 flashlight, and it's pretty nice. The only downside to flashlights is that the runtime is a bit low if you run in high mode (like an hour per battery change). I did have one problem where the flashlight was cutting out a bit, but all I had to do was to tighten the switch in the endcap and it hasn't caused me any trouble since then.
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Old 08-29-10, 04:11 PM   #5
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After the feedback, I'm probably going to try my luck with a TerraLUX LightStar220. Amazon has it for about half the price of the Blaze. Thanks for the input.
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Old 09-04-10, 04:02 AM   #6
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WOW!

Got my TerraLUX and Twofish ($43 out the door with expedited shipping on the flashlight from Amazon). I'm so glad I didn't bother with the Blaze 2w because...well...

That's the difference between my old 1/2 watt Blaze and the TerraLUX on high in a blacked-out hallway. I doubt the 2w Blaze can burn that brightly. Even if it can, the flashlight was still cheaper by more than $10.
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Old 09-04-10, 05:41 AM   #7
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That is pretty bright.
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Old 09-04-10, 08:55 AM   #8
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I'm so sick of my P7 light. I've tightened up the assemblies, adding paper spacers to my batteries, and snugged up the cap with magnets: nothing can make these POS flashlights reliable. Mine can barely make it a few miles without flickering or changing modes. It started flaking out with in a few months of getting it.

Planet Bike lights are expensive in terms of lumens/dollars, but they are rock solid investments. I've got two superflashes and a 1W blaze for "be seen" lights, and they've been going steady now for over two years through thunderstorms and -40 winters.
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Old 09-04-10, 09:13 AM   #9
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I'm so sick of my P7 light. I've tightened up the assemblies, adding paper spacers to my batteries, and snugged up the cap with magnets: nothing can make these POS flashlights reliable. Mine can barely make it a few miles without flickering or changing modes. It started flaking out with in a few months of getting it.

Planet Bike lights are expensive in terms of lumens/dollars, but they are rock solid investments. I've got two superflashes and a 1W blaze for "be seen" lights, and they've been going steady now for over two years through thunderstorms and -40 winters.
Yeah, the durability part remains to be seen. *fingers crossed*
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Old 09-04-10, 09:23 AM   #10
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i've been very happy with my blaze2w, reliable, thrifty with a pair of AA, water resistant (not waterproof), and reasonably bright for around town. the downsides, you can start to outrun the light anything past 10kmph, the amount of light just isn't there.

also quite frustrated with the handlebar mount. the quick release cam latch disengages occasionally, and i have never been able to get the mount tight enough that the light won't keep slipping down. cam latchs are really convenient but this design just doesn't work.

i have to secure with rubber bands to keep the light from moving.
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Old 09-04-10, 09:48 AM   #11
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rexK, thanks for showing that terralux 220, I just got the little bro version, the lightstar 100, love it.
I wanted a small powerful light with the strobe feature. the beam is floody, like yours.
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Old 09-04-10, 10:04 PM   #12
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I have a Quark AA2 (206 Lumens) for standard flashlight duty, and it now doubles as a bike light, next to a PlanetBike 1/2W (be-seen)-

http://www.4sevens.com/product_info....oducts_id=1656

Best with Sanyo Eneloops-

http://www.amazon.com/Sanyo-Eneloop-...d_bxgy_e_img_c

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Old 09-05-10, 01:53 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ItsJustMe View Post
Depends on what you need it for. It looks like it costs about $55 (without batteries). For another $15 you can get a P7 flashlight, batteries, charger and bike mount, and have a low mode that's probably brighter than the Blaze, and a medium and high mode that will put the Blaze to shame.

The only downside to flashlights is that the runtime is a bit low if you run in high mode (like an hour per battery change). I did have one problem where the flashlight was cutting out a bit, but all I had to do was to tighten the switch in the endcap and it hasn't caused me any trouble since then.
A one-hour charge tells me you need a backup light. I have one of those DIY halogen lights. I get about 45 minutes before it needs to hit the charger. Not a good thing to have for a 50 minute ride.

That's why I keep a 1/2 watt Blaze in my bag. It's pretty poor on poorly lit streets. Hopefully the 2W version will help that.
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Old 09-05-10, 02:05 PM   #14
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Have been running the 2w since they came out and use rechargeable batteries which increases the run time considerably... like most lights the lower you mount it the better and I find it to be a decent light even when there is a good amount of ambient light.

I fabbed a light mount to lower my lights on my P20 tourer and this greatly increased the effectiveness of the 2watt which is paired up with a 10watt Nighthawk. I have a blinkie mounted on the bars as a "be seen" light.

The Nighthawk has a 3-4 hour run time on high and no flashing mode but will tun night into day.



By lowering the light the beam casts longer shadows and this is what alerts us to objects on the road as you see this first.
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Old 09-05-10, 02:13 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by rex_kramer View Post
WOW!

Got my TerraLUX and Twofish ($43 out the door with expedited shipping on the flashlight from Amazon). I'm so glad I didn't bother with the Blaze 2w because...well...

That's the difference between my old 1/2 watt Blaze and the TerraLUX on high in a blacked-out hallway. I doubt the 2w Blaze can burn that brightly. Even if it can, the flashlight was still cheaper by more than $10.

FINALLY. Someone who asked about bike lights on this forum and got good advice, actually FOLLOWED IT. Hallelujah!

I can't tell you many many friggin' times folks have asked "which light?" or "Planet Bike 0.5-1watt?" to which they've been steered directly toward your setup by many people, and then what do they do? They go out and promptly bike a Planet Bike light just because it's "bike-specific." I'd say it's like a 10:1 ratio between folks who do this versus actually taking the advice - it's not like the lockblock is that complicated or hard to order.

Good on you. Try the inner-tube home-made helmet mount for that light as well - if you make one well, it's amazingly stable and effective. (It's very easy to make - google search it.)
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Old 09-05-10, 02:36 PM   #16
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FINALLY. Someone who asked about bike lights on this forum and got good advice, actually FOLLOWED IT. Hallelujah!

I can't tell you many many friggin' times folks have asked "which light?" or "Planet Bike 0.5-1watt?" to which they've been steered directly toward your setup by many people, and then what do they do? They go out and promptly bike a Planet Bike light just because it's "bike-specific." I'd say it's like a 10:1 ratio between folks who do this versus actually taking the advice - it's not like the lockblock is that complicated or hard to order.

Good on you. Try the inner-tube home-made helmet mount for that light as well - if you make one well, it's amazingly stable and effective. (It's very easy to make - google search it.)
Yes, that is noticable true. I had folks who seen my light setup in person and I provided them with all the info they needed to get the same setup. Following week, they spend more money on a dimmer light just because it came with a clamp for the handlebar. Problem here is that those bike specific light is very common on lots of bikes around here. Folks see them on other bikes and figure that's the way to go. When I'm out riding on the trail, other bicyclist will question me if my helmet light is a camera. Nothing wrong with the bike specific light since they does provide enough to be seen lumen but those who did question my lights wanted much more lumen but ended up with less lumen bcause it was easier for them to buy it at a LBS or REI and have it on the same day.

Rex_Kramer, I'm somewhat amazed you got by this long with a 1/2w light especially around the Southbay area where there is a fair amount of car traveling at high speed on those road. With the better light you got now, you will not be dissatisfied by it's performance since most drivers here are so used to the smaller low lumen lights.

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Old 09-05-10, 05:15 PM   #17
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Rex_Kramer, I'm somewhat amazed you got by this long with a 1/2w light especially around the Southbay area where there is a fair amount of car traveling at high speed on those road. With the better light you got now, you will not be dissatisfied by it's performance since most drivers here are so used to the smaller low lumen lights.
I would mostly run the 1/2 watt Blaze as my flasher and then I have an older Energizer 45 lumen work light strapped to the front of my helmet to light up (barely) the road directly in front of me. It's always been a hokey set-up, but I'll probably keep the worklight in use until I can find something better. For $18 (still sold at Home Depot), it's good bang for your buck.

You could easily utilize the included strap, instead I wrapped a reusable 11" cable tie through it to better keep it in place at the front of the helmet. It's still easily removed when it comes time to change the batteries. Cool thing is that it's hinged and will stay put in four different angles.
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Old 09-05-10, 11:10 PM   #18
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I have a Quark AA2 (206 Lumens) for standard flashlight duty, and it now doubles as a bike light, next to a PlanetBike 1/2W (be-seen)-

http://www.4sevens.com/product_info....oducts_id=1656

Best with Sanyo Eneloops-

http://www.amazon.com/Sanyo-Eneloop-...d_bxgy_e_img_c
A few photos-





Blaze 1/2W



Quark AA2 Tactical


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Old 09-06-10, 10:10 PM   #19
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FINALLY. Someone who asked about bike lights on this forum and got good advice, actually FOLLOWED IT. Hallelujah!

I can't tell you many many friggin' times folks have asked "which light?" or "Planet Bike 0.5-1watt?" to which they've been steered directly toward your setup by many people, and then what do they do? They go out and promptly bike a Planet Bike light just because it's "bike-specific." I'd say it's like a 10:1 ratio between folks who do this versus actually taking the advice - it's not like the lockblock is that complicated or hard to order.
OK, but Sheherazade made some good points in saying why he/she prefers the blaze 2w over the P7s:
Quote:
I'm so sick of my P7 light. I've tightened up the assemblies, adding paper spacers to my batteries, and snugged up the cap with magnets: nothing can make these POS flashlights reliable. Mine can barely make it a few miles without flickering or changing modes. It started flaking out with in a few months of getting it.

Planet Bike lights are expensive in terms of lumens/dollars, but they are rock solid investments. I've got two superflashes and a 1W blaze for "be seen" lights, and they've been going steady now for over two years through thunderstorms and -40 winters.
I'm in the market for a light for my bike, so anyone want to recommend a good, reasonably priced P7 flashlight? Or would the TerraLUX mentioned above not have these problems?
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Old 09-06-10, 11:09 PM   #20
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OK, but Sheherazade made some good points in saying why he/she prefers the blaze 2w over the P7s:


I'm in the market for a light for my bike, so anyone want to recommend a good, reasonably priced P7 flashlight? Or would the TerraLUX mentioned above not have these problems?
TerraLUX-
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Old 09-07-10, 11:04 AM   #21
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I have the 2W Blaze & constructed a helmet mount out of friction tape. The friction tape is in a shape that will keep the light locked in place using the handlebar mount. My primary light is a Supernova E3 generator light. The 2W Blaze works great as a backup or flashing helmet light. I would rather have a much brighter light as a primary.
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