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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 06-05-11, 10:44 AM   #1
LouisIV
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See headlight

I've got plenty of be seen lights, but I'm looking for a see light for commuting.

Moved into an area that has a lot less street lights. I'm not looking for an expensive light for offroading.

Just want a light that will let me see far enough ahead in town to be safe assuming no streetlights in the neighborhood.

Ben looking at the Cat-eye hl el135, but reviews say it's not enough light, but most of the reviews I find are from an MTB perspective.

Thoughts?
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Old 06-05-11, 12:35 PM   #2
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I have adopted a hub dynamo light system,
there are nice practical lighting systems that can be assembled.

.. made in Germany NL, and of course, Asia.
what's your budget?

Hub, Schmidt, lights, Busch and Muller or Schmidt
I have a Halogen bulb headlight , and an LED taillight, now.

may get a B&M Lyt it's a modest priced LED headlight, for Dynamo power.


have had for years, ..
An external battery pack from Nightrider, [San Diego Cal]
with a 10w halogen bulb is great, nice and bright.
the Sport set uses a 5 D cell battery pack , screws closed watertight,
they also use it as a Dive light.

Last edited by fietsbob; 06-05-11 at 12:40 PM.
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Old 06-05-11, 02:03 PM   #3
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The most efficient headlights will use LEDs, but they are expensive unless you build one yourself. With that being said, dynohub lights are sooo much nicer than charging/replacing batteries all the time. Probably the best, cheapest solution would be to get a very nice Cree LED mini flashlight from Dealextreme.com and mount it on the handlebars... and if 1 isn't enough, they're cheap enough to get two.

A flashlight like this:
http://www.dealextreme.com/p/uniquef...500-1-aa-55243

and a mount like this:
http://www.dealextreme.com/p/univers...m-32-8mm-15342
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Old 06-05-11, 02:11 PM   #4
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This mount works better IMO:
http://www.dealextreme.com/p/univers...diameter-31871
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Old 06-05-11, 03:03 PM   #5
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Get a Lupine Betty.
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Old 06-05-11, 03:44 PM   #6
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I own two of those Cat-eye hl el135 you mention. The amount of light they output are hardly much. I don't use them much anymore except as loaner for rides with friends who wants a blinkie.

There's a lot of LED light option out there with Lumen ranging 100 to 1000 OTF lumens. What are your price range? You can get cheaper light anywhere from $30 to $200 for 100 lumen to 1000+ lumen. For better quality stuff, expect the price tag to double.

You also need to consider the power source. There are lights using common consumer battery to special LiIon battery. There's the question of internal or external battery and the runtime desire.
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Old 06-05-11, 04:24 PM   #7
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wanting to keep it under 50. going to look into those Cree flashlights for sure. Any other recommendations?
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Old 06-05-11, 05:22 PM   #8
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Shimano has a halogen bulb one, planet bike one with a 1W LED,
both fit to a QR handle bar clip.
cord runs down to hub plug, so essentially like a Battery light,
but no batteries to replace.
for commuting they come off the bars to take in with you.

the 1W Planed bike LED is a bright spot, so cord or battery is a choice.
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Old 06-05-11, 06:06 PM   #9
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I think a good light to see the road with should be 2W or higher, i have a 2W one from Planet Bike.
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Old 06-05-11, 06:26 PM   #10
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wanting to keep it under 50. going to look into those Cree flashlights for sure. Any other recommendations?
Shiningbeam has lots of choices for flashlight. Some model uses AA and some are the 18650 batteries.

There been some pretty good review of this EO3 XML flashlight from Tactical HID. The spec from Candlepower forum list it as 200 lumen with 1+ hr runtime time with 1 x AA Ni-mH cell or 320 lumen at 45min runtime at med mode with 14500 rechargeable LiIo cell. In the high mode with 14500 cell, it is rated at 490 lumens for 30 minute. 30 minute may not be a long runtime but that 490 lumen is a lot of lights.

Bikerayusa has some bicycle specific light that is similar to the Magicshine but IMO are better built with better battery. They have some limited used demo light at a good deal. The used demo Bikeray 1 or Bikeray2 are selling for $70. It is over your $20 budget but personally I think that is a good deal for what you will get.

Last edited by colleen c; 06-05-11 at 06:29 PM.
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Old 06-05-11, 07:18 PM   #11
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check out this page:

http://planetbike.com/page/learn/lightfinder/


this fits your budget and sheds a good amount of light
http://ecom1.planetbike.com/3044.html
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Old 06-05-11, 07:33 PM   #12
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If you're looking for something to see by in the $20 range, I hope your eyesight is really good. About all you'll get in that range are toy lights.

Bite teh bullet, spend $90 and get the MagicShine 900. Cars think I'm a motorcycle. Better still, I can see the damned road, at a reasonable speed, even in the wet.

Last edited by tsl; 06-05-11 at 07:38 PM.
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Old 06-06-11, 09:17 AM   #13
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If you're looking for something to see by in the $20 range, I hope your eyesight is really good. About all you'll get in that range are toy lights.
I actually said under 50. Magicshine seesm overkill to me for street riding particularly when if a pothole sneeks up on me, I'm commuting on an mtb anyway.
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Old 06-06-11, 09:29 AM   #14
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Quote:
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I actually said under 50. Magicshine seesm overkill to me for street riding particularly when if a pothole sneeks up on me, I'm commuting on an mtb anyway.
Sorry. The one you said you were considering is $20. I took that figure.
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Old 06-06-11, 09:31 AM   #15
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I have a Bell LED Dawn Patrol and couldn't be happier. Bright enough for twenty mph, batteries
last several weeks using it every day. 3/AAA's

Walmart, $10

http://www.amazon.com/Bell-Dawn-Patr.../dp/B002Y1IO7E
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Old 06-06-11, 11:21 AM   #16
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You can get a decent flashlight for under $50, but the batteries are going to get expensive unless you get rechargeables and that's going to cost more with the charger and rechargeable batteries. There's a sticky in the electronics forum entitled best lights under $50 - did you see anything you liked there?

Last edited by no motor?; 06-06-11 at 11:25 AM.
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Old 06-06-11, 12:06 PM   #17
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You can get a decent flashlight for under $50, but the batteries are going to get expensive unless you get rechargeables and that's going to cost more with the charger and rechargeable batteries.
With the thin barrel, you have to be careful about which mount you use, but if you use a Fenix LD20 and take it off turbo mode when you don't need that much extra light, 2 AA batteries will last a long time. Only drawback is that when bumping through low-med-high modes, you'll have to hit it an extra time to dodge that SOS blink mode. No luck yet getting Fenix to remake it without that mode.
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Old 06-06-11, 12:27 PM   #18
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I actually said under 50. Magicshine seesm overkill to me for street riding particularly when if a pothole sneeks up on me, I'm commuting on an mtb anyway.
Street riding is all the more reason you want a zombie scorcher so that you don't blend in with all the background lighting.
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Old 06-06-11, 01:05 PM   #19
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I have a Bell LED Dawn Patrol and couldn't be happier. Bright enough for twenty mph, batteries
last several weeks using it every day. 3/AAA's

Walmart, $10
I guffaw in your general direction... 20mph... you're serious too, aren't you. Post #12 everybody. Read it and weep, but he has it right on. At night every other kind of road user goes out the door armed with a minimum amount of light that is hundreds of times brighter than a MagicShine for 1/10th the cost of a Magicshine. They are not traveling 100x faster. Sorry brethren the MagicShine must be considered the minimum amount of light adequate at night and while it is very possible to make do with less... why? I've had salespeople try to sell me $600 headlights with a straight face. Lights that are about as bright as a MagicShine. Again, ... why? Why are cyclists so contrary? Either they want to pay $600, $800 and more for adequate amounts of light and thumb their noses at MagicShines for being "shoddy"... or they think 50 lumens a bit too bright for comfort and thumb their noses at MagicShines for being 'overkill'. I don't get it. I really don't.

H
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Old 06-06-11, 01:12 PM   #20
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Street riding is all the more reason you want a zombie scorcher so that you don't blend in with all the background lighting.
That Zombie Scorcher in traffic is no brighter and no more distinctive than any other automobile headlight. If you want to stand out or be identified as 'special' put a flasher on or better still put your backup 1/2 watt in flash mode. My backup light runs in flash mode full time whether or not the Magicshine is running. I save the MagicShine for the dead zones without streetlights or the runs between towns.

H
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Old 06-06-11, 01:37 PM   #21
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I guffaw in your general direction... 20mph... you're serious too, aren't you. Post #12 everybody. Read it and weep, but he has it right on. At night every other kind of road user goes out the door armed with a minimum amount of light that is hundreds of times brighter than a MagicShine for 1/10th the cost of a Magicshine. They are not traveling 100x faster. Sorry brethren the MagicShine must be considered the minimum amount of light adequate at night and while it is very possible to make do with less... why? I've had salespeople try to sell me $600 headlights with a straight face. Lights that are about as bright as a MagicShine. Again, ... why? Why are cyclists so contrary? Either they want to pay $600, $800 and more for adequate amounts of light and thumb their noses at MagicShines for being "shoddy"... or they think 50 lumens a bit too bright for comfort and thumb their noses at MagicShines for being 'overkill'. I don't get it. I really don't.

H
Have you tried the Bell light? If not then STFU!
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Old 06-06-11, 01:50 PM   #22
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Have you tried the Bell light? If not then STFU!
I can attest to the Bell lights. I have a Lumina series 8-LED light, and it is really fairly bright. With two of them, I wouldnt even worry a bit. Its all about a balance of bright vs cost. After a certain point the price-per-lumen cost skyrockets, and gets you marginal benefits. I would invest in an adequate headlamp, and an EXCELLENT rear lamp though. I'd rather have taillamps that are insanely bright than a head light.
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Old 06-06-11, 02:08 PM   #23
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I love(d) my Magicshine but they did have that little problem with the battery recall; I'm still waiting for my replacement battery pack. A current update on the geomangear website (as of June 6th) says that the recent Japanese disasters have pushed the replacement program back 10 more weeks. They are selling the new versions for $90. I may buy one just to have a spare. This way I'll have two chargers and an updated light.

Plus, if we can get the OP to order one, Geomangear will have a bit more money to send me the replacement battery pack! Ok, actually I did just order another light. I really do need a spare and this way I'll be able to take the significant other for an evening ride.
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Old 06-06-11, 02:11 PM   #24
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Go to the Electronics, Lighting & Gadgets Forum and look at the "Lights under $50" thread. You'll get some good ideas there. As for a mount for the flashlight. I recommend the Two Fish lock block from 4 Sevens.
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Old 06-06-11, 03:09 PM   #25
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Have you tried the Bell light? If not then STFU!
Have you tried the MagicShine? If not... ...
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