This looks like a really good product.
Like the theory, but notice that the video camera doesn't even strain to handle the light output from THREE of them My one cygolite on low would blow out the sensor in the camera. So as a headlight it's a non starter for me unless they could get the output up massively.
As a tail light it has some promise maybe as a backup though.
A useless gimick coupled with specious marketing hype.
"The battery is good for 75 hours of run time, which is sufficient for two years of use."
"Riding your bike in the summer (even if parked inside) is enough to charge the battery so that it will last all winter."
"We designed a light that will last for years, while others only last a few months."
Solar panels that size are capable of generating only micro amps of current. 1000 microamps = 1 milliamp. 1000 milliamps = 1 amp... It would take such a solar cell well more than a year of full time sunlight to fully charge a AA size battery.
Any light with a battery of that size that lasts for 75 hours, is of little use on the bike to see anything with. Look at the useful time on other lights. They run a couple of hours...
I think it is a cool concept. Maybe they will get brighter as they continue product development.
Light in the dark, is not free , more watts draws the batteries down faster.
If recharge rate from small panel size, is tiny , it will never have sufficient charge.
and left on the bike in the day it will get stolen while parked.
Those little solar yard lights make a nice light for your tent at night.
Everything should be as simple as possible...But not more so.---Albert Einstein
I also feel these are overhyped and underpowered. At best, they are be-seen lights, not see-by-it lights.
Too low powered. I like the idea though,maybe if they can up the brightness(different LED's,better reflector).
Also not liking the mount. It either needs to be more substantial so you can leave the light on without it getting stolen,or easier to use so you can remove the light each time.
Not a bad idea if they can just make the needed improvements.
edit:just checked out the site. "The light output is moderate and non-blinding for oncoming traffic" Nah guys,that's not how you do that. You want people to see you,even in the daytime.
C'dale BBU('05 and '09)/Super Six/Hooligan8and 3,Kona Dew Deluxe,Novara Buzz/Safari,Surly Big Dummy,Marin Pt Reyes,Giant Defy 1,Schwinn DBX SuperSport/Qualifier,Dahon Speed Pro TT,Brompton S6L
My dyno powered light is always available too, but also allows me to actually see the road in the dark. These may work for the riders in NL but not here in US. The hype could be seen as unethical because of the attempt to convince riders that this sub-standard unit is all they need.
Too bad my bike stays inside when im not on it....
This looks like a really BAD product to me. 75 hours of battery life in that little package? Get real! If so, the light has got to be really dim. And solar electricity requires lots of area to grab sunlight. The whole thing is a joke.
Don in Austin
I asked the designer if the unit's output conformed to European standards and he said it does conform to CE requirements.
Wait, 75 hours = 2 years of use?
In the winter I ride both to work and back every day in the dark. That's about 110 minutes a day, or 36 hours a month. 75 hours would be < 2 months in the winter for me.
Also, that bike light is ridiculously weak. it's not even bright enough to count as a "be seen" light IMO. On my every day ride I'm hitting 30+ MPH at several points and averaging about 19 to 20 MPH, sometimes the 30+ MPH sections are on bad road where I need to see in pitch black darkness 40 to 50 feet in front of me or I risk hitting bad holes and getting pinch flats. That light looks about as powerful as the screen on my phone - I'd probably get more usable light putting my taillight on the front of my bike.
It's no wonder riders there go 5 MPH everywhere if that's their idea of proper lighting.
Work: the 8 hours that separates bike rides.
Maybe if you stick it in the lawn for a couple days and all you need is a dull glow,Those little solar yard lights make a nice light for your tent at night.
so you can find the walkway, on your Bike, Its will be less disappointing ..
Last edited by fietsbob; 07-12-13 at 08:26 AM.
The simple fact is, solar is not a good power source for lights. It turns out that lights draw a ton of current to be able to see anything. Low current producing source, high draw, bad combination. I'd love to get my hands on one and measure it with a multimeter to see how well it lives up to it's "75 hours" claim.
I have used a small 18W panel to keep my battery power cygolites charged (as well as a few other small electronics). But that panel measures about a square foot and a half...
How about a foot square Mortar board panel , and headlight, on your Helmet ?
I'm waiting for when they figure out how to empty all the air out of a mayonnaise jar, and fill it up with photons instead.
My two favorite things in life are libraries and bicycles. They both move people forward without wasting anything.
The perfect day: Riding a bike to the library.Peter Golkin
Lucky for me, I work at a library and bike to work.
It sounds like the designers are relying too much on component specs when making their claims. They say you "get enough power in the summer to last you all winter" but I bet they haven't taken into account that even if you go into winter with the batteries fully charged and never use them, they may be dead before spring simply due to self-discharge. They may have a theoretical capacity sufficient to last, but it may not happen in practice.
Work: the 8 hours that separates bike rides.
I think it's a neat idea, to integrate the solar cells into the light itself. Blackburn offers a separate solar charger for their Flea. I'm a little skeptical about the battery life, but even a 5 hour battery, receiving a trickle charge all day would more than meet my normal needs, even in winter when days are short. I hope they make it, I don't need any lights right now, but when something breaks, that's what I'll be looking at.
There are folding solar panels available out there that will charge a 18650 battery, and if it can do that it could power a light directly. But guess what, it will power a light when you need it the least, in full sunlight!. So ultimately you need a battery unless you have a dynamo. Now I've also seen (on the interwebs, not in person) the Magnic light, which uses magnetic flux from the rim's rotation. This does not require a special wheel build, just attach it around your brakes, or even better if you have disk brakes, where the calipers would otherwise go. THAT looks like a good idea, and can probably be improved over time too. Gen 1 is available now. (I have nothing to do with this, I'm not being a shill.) These aren't STVZO compliant, but put out enough light to be seen, and maybe to light the road (they claim 30 lux). The rear light is cool as it is a natural brake light if attached to the brakes. As it gets closer to the rim when you squeeze the brake lever it gets brighter from the increased flux. No wires either as it is self-contained.
These don't have a stand light though, but I don't think it would take much to make one. I'm surprised they didn't just include it. Maybe in version 2.
Last edited by zacster; 07-12-13 at 08:53 PM.