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Old 11-06-13, 12:35 PM   #26
Leisesturm
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Originally Posted by spivonious View Post
As long the light is aimed correctly, i.e. not pointing in the eyes of oncoming drivers, then go as bright as you want.

For what its worth, my MagicShine 808 is plenty bright enough for me to commute home in the dark out in the suburbs. They say it's 1100 lumens, and I believe it; it's about as bright as the CFL bulbs I have at home, albeit more directed. I point the light so it illuminates the ground about 10-15 feet in front of me.
MagicShine is as guilty of output overstatemnt as anyone else. Not that it matters in their case. I have three of those lights. One on my helmet and two on the bars. The light on my helmet is a first generation MS. The two on the bars are newer. On their middle intensity they are as bright as the older one is at full power. I rarely use all three lights at full power, but in the rain it helps A LOT to have the extra lumens. When I drive I never wish I had more light. With the MagicShines, even with all three going I occasionally hit stuff that seriously destabilizes the bike. And I never saw it. Cyclists are the only vehicle operators that delibarately underate their equipment and then go out and put their lives on the line. Willingly. If you ride at night, you owe it to yourself to get the best lights you can afford, not the worst. The best lights money can buy are in the 1000 lumen range. A single light of that type is seriously underpowered compared to what a car suppies. If you hit a tree branch in your car, it may make you drop your cell-phone but you are not likely to suffer a broken collar-bone. Suburban and rural cyclists should know this but I pass many of them at night and the only way I knew they were there is because their pedal reflectors... ... they are cranking away at 2 mph with a 2 AAA light in front and they think they can see. SMH. By all means, bring shaped beam battery headlights of high intensity to the U.S. I am not going to pay $1000 for one though.

H

PS-- It also needs to be said. I have never seen anyone mention the fact that your lights need to be bright enough to show you what is happening in front of you, when you are blinded by the lights of oncoming drivers. When even the low beams of oncoming traffic shuts your pupils down to pinpoints you need serious lumens coming out of your own lighting to keep you safe. I know I need more light at night than other people but, I don't seem to have trouble getting the amount of light I need from car headlights. Nor does anyone need to spend $1k+ on automobile lighting to get adequate performance nor, conversely do they have to stumble around with sub-optimal amounts of lights because that is all they can afford. Interesting that the DOT classifies bikes as legal road vehicles subject to all the responsibilities of road usage that such a designation mandates but then stipulates only that a rider have lighting that allows them to be seen. Once that low bar is achieved you are free to go out there in the dark with as little light as you think you can get away with.
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Old 11-06-13, 12:41 PM   #27
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I hate flashing bright harsh LED lights at night, from the one time I encountered a bicyclist with one while I was driving in the opposite direction. They're enough to trigger an epileptic seizure in the wrong people. I firmly believe that lights that light your way, and lights that warn others of your presence, should be separate lights.

I also hate all LED car headlights. There is something in the quality of that bluish-white light that harshes out my eyeballs far more than the incandescent headllights they replaced.
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Old 11-06-13, 01:19 PM   #28
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imo, most of the concerns about lighting are just trivial ranting. bike lights are positioned higher up so they will often light up the interior of a car. likewise, it's impossible to prevent some bleed-through from a bright light on a mup. if a light bothers you on a bike or in a car, you have the choice to slow down.
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Old 11-06-13, 01:31 PM   #29
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lux matters when the goal is to actually see the road.
lumens matter when you want to alert motorized couch riders to your presence.

which of these two phenomena is more important to the average commuter in a 1st world city with street lights?


you really have no idea
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Old 11-06-13, 02:09 PM   #30
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you really have no idea
i think having a light that let's you be seen and see the road is a very good idea. and it's sad that germany shows blatant favoritism to motorists by severaly limiting cyclist's lighting options. if unfocused bike lights were a genuine problem our media would be inundated with "motorist crashes and dies after being blinded by cyclist" stories. but there aren't any of these stories because this is an imaginary problem.
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Old 11-06-13, 02:16 PM   #31
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i think having a light that let's you be seen and see the road is a very good idea. and it's sad that germany shows blatant favoritism to motorists by severaly limiting cyclist's lighting options. if unfocused bike lights were a genuine problem our media would be inundated with "motorist crashes and dies after being blinded by cyclist" stories. but there aren't any of these stories because this is an imaginary problem.
non sequitur



you're on fire tonight

en fuego
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Old 11-06-13, 02:22 PM   #32
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if unfocused bike lights were a genuine problem our media would be inundated with "motorist crashes and dies after being blinded by cyclist" stories. but there aren't any of these stories because this is an imaginary problem.
Just for the sake of a discussion, let us apply the logic posted frequently by at least one poster in A&S: Just because there is no accident data to support the theory, does not mean the problem doesn't exist.

Maybe some of those unexplained bike-car accidents, especially hit and run, could be the result of motorists "blinded" by another bicyclist shinning its lighting firepower into the motorist's face. Could be a good phony excuse for not seeing a bicyclist, though not hit and run behavior. "I couldn't see anything due to a jackwad cyclist going the other way blinding me."

Another possibility is that there are so few cyclists ridding at night in most places in the U.S. that the presence of a few obnoxious ones with blinding lights hasn't made it to the surface of media attention.
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Old 11-06-13, 02:27 PM   #33
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Just for the sake of a discussion, let us apply the logic posted frequently by at least one poster in A&S: Just because there is no accident data to support the theory, does not mean the problem doesn't exist.

Maybe some of those unexplained bike-car accidents, especially hit and run, could be the result of motorists "blinded" by another bicyclist shinning its lighting firepower into the motorist's face. Could be a good phony excuse for not seeing a bicyclist, though not hit and run behavior. "I couldn't see anything due to a jackwad cyclist going the other way blinding me."

Another possibility is that there are so few cyclists ridding at night in most places in the U.S. that the presence of a few obnoxious ones with blinding lights hasn't made it to the surface of media attention.
wow, that is a constructive response

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Old 11-06-13, 02:38 PM   #34
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@Leisesturm - not sure if your reply was directed at me or you just quoted me to bash MagicShine's lumens ratings.

Luckily there are no tree branches going across the road in my state, so I'm safe with just one light. I agree that the AAA battery-powered lights are worthless for headlights.
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Old 11-06-13, 02:43 PM   #35
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Just for the sake of a discussion, let us apply the logic posted frequently by at least one poster in A&S: Just because there is no accident data to support the theory, does not mean the problem doesn't exist.

Maybe some of those unexplained bike-car accidents, especially hit and run, could be the result of motorists "blinded" by another bicyclist shinning its lighting firepower into the motorist's face. Could be a good phony excuse for not seeing a bicyclist, though not hit and run behavior. "I couldn't see anything due to a jackwad cyclist going the other way blinding me."

Another possibility is that there are so few cyclists ridding at night in most places in the U.S. that the presence of a few obnoxious ones with blinding lights hasn't made it to the surface of media attention.
I can't speak for Burlington but here the media loves to make hay of every dumb@#$% move by a cyclist. Here is a fine example:
http://blog.oregonlive.com/commuting..._by_bicyc.html

And since there are an awful lot of cyclists riding at night here, it's clearly not a major issue.
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Old 11-06-13, 02:47 PM   #36
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non sequitur

you're on fire tonight
en fuego
yes...and so are my lights.
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Old 11-06-13, 02:55 PM   #37
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I can't speak for Burlington but here the media loves to make hay of every dumb@#$% move by a cyclist. Here is a fine example:
http://blog.oregonlive.com/commuting..._by_bicyc.html

And since there are an awful lot of cyclists riding at night here, it's clearly not a major issue.
Again, only for the sake of discussion, with no intent to cast aspersions on BF posters, maybe "blindings" by jackwad cyclists in Portland are so common that it is a dog bitting man story and therefore not a good media story. At least until someone claims it as the cause of an injury/fatality.
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Old 11-06-13, 03:34 PM   #38
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Again, only for the sake of discussion, with no intent to cast aspersions on BF posters, maybe "blindings" by jackwad cyclists in Portland are so common that it is a dog bitting man story and therefore not a good media story. At least until someone claims it as the cause of an injury/fatality.
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Old 11-06-13, 03:52 PM   #39
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that's why I like Europe. in Germany, in an urban area, you'll get a ticket for pulling crap like the guys do here with their POS magicshine lights.

.
Here in Oregon the cops don't enforce any light requirements unless they feel like pulling a Terry stop to check for papers. Not on bikes and certainly not on cars, many of which have aftermarket fog or running lights on all the time. Or HIDs. I'm definitely losing the light wars. I swear once I can retire I'm never riding at night again, bicycle or motorcycle or even a car.
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Old 11-06-13, 03:54 PM   #40
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that should be "Ockham's razor"

:sigh:

i weep for humanity when people distill elegant concepts into a "poster" and employ it incorrectly
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Old 11-06-13, 04:04 PM   #41
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On the subject, has anyone installed a diffuser lens on Magicshine's or their clones?
I just got one yesterday. Having just ran it down the road and back once, I like it.

This page from Amazon has a few user submitted pics that convinced me to get one. It's one of the best $5.83 I've ever spent on a bike item.
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Old 11-06-13, 04:18 PM   #42
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that should be "Ockham's razor"
alternative spelling.
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Old 11-06-13, 04:20 PM   #43
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alternative spelling.
no...

this village is still spelled Ockham.
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Old 11-06-13, 04:41 PM   #44
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no...

this village is still spelled Ockham.
How do they spell München in Ockham?
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Old 11-06-13, 04:42 PM   #45
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this village is still spelled Ockham.
and in the 13th century alternate latinate spellings were common.

hth.
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Old 11-06-13, 04:50 PM   #46
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and in the 13th century alternate latinate spellings were common.

hth.
it is still Ockham today.

do you always repeat gibberish like a parrot?

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Old 11-06-13, 04:51 PM   #47
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How do they spell München in Ockham?
They don't employ München.
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Old 11-06-13, 04:59 PM   #48
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do you always repeat gibberish like a parrot?
i'm very sorry that your parrot speaks gibberish, acidfast7.
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Old 11-06-13, 05:09 PM   #49
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Some of the finer points are not worth arguing: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Occam%27s_razor. Yes, it is Ockham, now what? I also use Occam. Does that make me a cretin? There is plenty to disagree over even if we stick to only debating bike topics. All is lost if we also start debating the etymology of arcane philosophical constructs.

H
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Old 11-06-13, 05:11 PM   #50
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Some of the finer points are not worth arguing: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Occam%27s_razor. Yes, it is Ockham, now what? I also use Occam. Does that make me a cretin? There is plenty to disagree over even if we stick to only debating bike topics. All is lost if we also start debating the etymology of arcane philosophical constructs.

H
Yes (and a parrot who repeats things with understanding their meaning.)

edit: That's unfair. I like your handle, so I apologise.
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