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Thread: Too Bright

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    Too Bright

    I've just got the Night Rider Minewt 600 and everything seems nice except when I switch on the Daylight flash mode. I don't want to say it's bright but I swear I could signal the International Space Station from where I live. LOL
    Seriously, is there a point where lights get too bright for commuting? There's an urban legend out that says some commuter from West Virginia hooked up landing lights from a small plane to his bike. The results turned night into day, literally.

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    http://www.538.nl acidfast7's Avatar
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    Bicycle lights should have a cutoff.

    http://swhs.home.xs4all.nl/fiets/tes.../index_en.html
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    tougher than a boiled owl droy45's Avatar
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    Well, the Minewt 600 is 600 lumens I believe. This is generally for mountain biking on trails at night. Its too much for general commuting on streets. It can be handy though if you commute some rural areas with no street lights. You can dim it down to the low or medium settings. I have a similar Nightrider light the Lumina 350 and the flash setting is not on the brightest. They are great lights though.
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    Riding like its 1990 thenomad's Avatar
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    as long as its pointed correctly then I say no. A car light is many times brighter and nobody complains unless it is the brights aimed on a higher angle. Do many cyclists have them aimed too high? Yes. Are they too bright? Not if it lights the road and keeps a car from hitting you.
    Whiny drivers complain when flashing lights disrupt their texting while driving. I say, that's the point.
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    Seņior Member ItsJustMe's Avatar
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    My light is about the same. For daylight flashing I point it down quite a bit, to where I can just see the strobe effect on the reflective signs 100 feet away. With it pointed normally (main beam still at the street) the signs are flashing like UFOs.
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    I have a NiteRider 600. Been using it for a couple years. I commute year round, 5 days a week, and always in the dark very early in the morning. I run this light on the lowest setting (250 lumens) 95% of the time. Lights like this are like high horsepower engines. You rarely need the power, but when you do, it's nice to have.

    Matt

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hangtownmatt View Post
    I have a NiteRider 600. Been using it for a couple years. I commute year round, 5 days a week, and always in the dark very early in the morning. I run this light on the lowest setting (250 lumens) 95% of the time. Lights like this are like high horsepower engines. You rarely need the power, but when you do, it's nice to have.

    Matt
    I am finding 230-275 OTF/ANSI lumens are about right for commuting. It is good enough to see plenty. 600 lumens is overkill and if you have it pointed too far up, it is only going to give use cyclists a bad name.

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    Lug
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    Well it I'm not in WV, but I have a Whelen LED taxi/landing light on my commuter. 12 LED elements with a 0.6 amp draw running 24 volts (2 2.3 amp 12 volt AGM sealed lead acid batteries). It is probably overkill, but when the MUP isn't lit and you have moose, bear, and bums to dodge it is real nice.

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    Disco Infiltrator Darth Lefty's Avatar
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    On the trail last night, oncoming cyclists were covering their lights as I approached. I didn't know whether to take this as a hint that mine was too bright or mis-aimed. I have it aimed pretty well down but it's not that focused.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ben4345 View Post
    600 lumens is overkill and if you have it pointed too far up, it is only going to give use cyclists a bad name.
    i run 2 x 420 lumens (cygolite metro) and I find this is just about right for a 35-40 mph descent on a dark windy road.

    i'm also curious whether you also believe motorists who run bright halogen or led head lights give motorists a bad name.
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    Quote Originally Posted by spare_wheel View Post
    i run 2 x 420 lumens (cygolite metro) and I find this is just about right for a 35-40 mph descent on a dark windy road.

    i'm also curious whether you also believe motorists who run bright halogen or led head lights give motorists a bad name.
    Car headlights are a lot brighter than most of our bike lights. But most of them are directed and diffused so much that it isn't a problem. When I say someone has their 600 + lumens light pointed right at my face on-coming traffic. It isn't nice at all. I am almost tempted to bring my thrower, and have it ready to shine on these rude cyclists faces; and ******* cagers who insist on having their brights on.
    When you are on a unlit path, and going 30-40 MPH, then yeah, that is different. Just make sure they are not pointing at my eyes. You wouldn't want me to do that to you when you are going down that hill.

    (P.S. do not be suprised that your cygolite's are really around 300 lumens each)
    Last edited by ben4345; 11-05-13 at 09:33 PM.

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    Riding like its 1990 thenomad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ben4345 View Post
    Car headlights are a lot brighter than most of our bike lights. But most of them are directed and diffused so much that it isn't a problem. When I say someone has their 600 + lumens light pointed right at my face on-coming traffic. It isn't nice at all. I am almost tempted to bring my thrower, and have it ready to shine on these rude cyclists faces; and ******* cagers who insist on having their brights on.
    When you are on a unlit path, and going 30-40 MPH, then yeah, that is different. Just make sure they are not pointing at my eyes. You wouldn't want me to do that to you when you are going down that hill.

    (P.S. do not be suprised that your cygolite's are really around 300 lumens each)
    Oh I see, you want to purposefully blind people because you dont approve of their light choice for their own riding. Classy.

    I'll assume you are venting. I understand vs cars due to the fact they have two blazing headlights, and all the comforts of home with their big toe controlling 200+hp and they blame me for "making them late" or having a "bright light"; for cyclists I dont see the need to exact revenge.
    Last edited by thenomad; 11-05-13 at 10:08 PM.
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    Riding like its 1990 thenomad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
    On the trail last night, oncoming cyclists were covering their lights as I approached. I didn't know whether to take this as a hint that mine was too bright or mis-aimed. I have it aimed pretty well down but it's not that focused.
    I cover my light as courtesy for oncoming cyclists. It avoids that moment of possible blindness as you pass so close on the MUP. So far nobody returns the favor with their bright lights but I understand they may not get it. I still do it to make their commute a little nicer.
    My blog about rides, bikes and builds: ridesgoneby.blogspot.com

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    Quote Originally Posted by ben4345 View Post
    (P.S. do not be suprised that your cygolite's are really around 300 lumens each)
    cygolite is a reputable manufacturer and reviews have found their lights to be fairly close to claimed lumens.
    Road rash is a precious gift. Road rash is your friend. Bask in it, appreciate it, love it. Above all, learn from it. --Robert Hurst

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    Quote Originally Posted by thenomad View Post
    Oh I see, you want to purposefully blind people because you dont approve of their light choice for their own riding. Classy.

    I'll assume you are venting. I understand vs cars due to the fact they have two blazing headlights, and all the comforts of home with their big toe controlling 200+hp and they blame me for "making them late" or having a "bright light"; for cyclists I dont see the need to exact revenge.

    *facepalm*
    Do you have any reading comprehension?
    When you have your bright light pointing at my face while you are a riding, you are a ****** bag. If you are considerate enough to aim your light where it should, at the ground, you are ok; regardless the brightness.

    I been noticing a lot of cyclists doing this in unlit MUPs, they have their light pointed upword at my face. It isn't fun, I am not sure why anyone would do this. Maybe to show off their gadget? Maybe they are inconsiderate? Maybe they don't realize it? Perhaps they are really a ******bag and trolling other cyclists.

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    http://www.538.nl acidfast7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ben4345 View Post
    *facepalm*
    Do you have any reading comprehension?
    When you have your bright light pointing at my face while you are a riding, you are a ****** bag. If you are considerate enough to aim your light where it should, at the ground, you are ok; regardless the brightness.

    I been noticing a lot of cyclists doing this in unlit MUPs, they have their light pointed upword at my face. It isn't fun, I am not sure why anyone would do this. Maybe to show off their gadget? Maybe they are inconsiderate? Maybe they don't realize it? Perhaps they are really a ******bag and trolling other cyclists.
    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.

    but good luck getting people to understand that lumens don't matter, lux matters and where the lux is located should be regulated just like it is with an auto headlight

    also, FWIW, it's mandatory in Germany to have rotating headlights so that if you're towing something, that the headlights can be aimed down toward the ground such that you're not blinding oncoming drivers.

    even my old 1994 Audi A4 has that device (which I never touch because it will break an cost me like €100000000 to fix.) and I never tow.
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    Fat Guy on a Little Bike KonAaron Snake's Avatar
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    It's funny that you posted this - there were several people on the trail last night with obnoxious, over the top lighting and it bugged me. I'm talking two mininewts on 600 with added helmet lighting. At a certain point...yes, it's too much...and you have to be especially careful with helmet lighting.

    Te front strobe effect is especially obnoxious on higher power lights.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hangtownmatt View Post
    I have a NiteRider 600. Been using it for a couple years. I commute year round, 5 days a week, and always in the dark very early in the morning. I run this light on the lowest setting (250 lumens) 95% of the time. Lights like this are like high horsepower engines. You rarely need the power, but when you do, it's nice to have.
    Matt
    Same exact light, same opinion. +1 for Matt!

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    Quote Originally Posted by acidfast7 View Post
    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.

    but good luck getting people to understand that lumens don't matter, lux matters and where the lux is located should be regulated just like it is with an auto headlight

    also, FWIW, it's mandatory in Germany to have rotating headlights so that if you're towing something, that the headlights can be aimed down toward the ground such that you're not blinding oncoming drivers.

    even my old 1994 Audi A4 has that device (which I never touch because it will break an cost me like €100000000 to fix.) and I never tow.
    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?
    Road rash is a precious gift. Road rash is your friend. Bask in it, appreciate it, love it. Above all, learn from it. --Robert Hurst

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    Senior Member alan s's Avatar
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    I run a Niterider Lumina 650 on my helmet and an older Minewt 350 on the bars. Never on flash. I keep them pointed down for oncoming riders, but even so, last night, a guy without any lights going the other way on a pitch black MUP (Capital Crescent Trail) ran into the bushes. Felt kind of bad for him, but I was riding appropriately. I've been in his shoes before, when my batteries ran out once, and it is impossible to see in that situation. The solution is to get lights strong enough so you can see even with oncoming lights. Part of my commute is on a bike path on the left side of a road, so oncoming cars make it difficult to see. Again, I need strong enough lights for the situation.

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    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.

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    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Not on your helmet , so you dont dazzle oncoming drivers if you look their way.

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    Senior Member JerrySTL's Avatar
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    I have both the MiNewt 600 and 150 cordless. The 400 and 100 modes respectively are what I usually used. I don't put them on flash very often except around dusk or dawn where I can see good enough but maybe the car drivers can't.

    As far as too bright, I was doing a 24-hour road race a few years ago and notice that I could see my shadow in the middle of the night. The guy was still about a quarter mile behind me! He had some fancy HID lights - 4 bulbs I think - and oncoming cars were flashing their high beams in an attempt to get him to lower his lights. They were bright!

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    What, me worry? Telly's Avatar
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    On the subject, has anyone installed a diffuser lens on Magicshine's or their clones?

    I ask because I recently purchased a clone (supposedly 1800 lumens, close to 800 which is absolutely fine) and the beam is totally lost because of the hot spot and surrounding cone.

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    I have a Nite Rider Lumina 700, and I tend to think its flash mode is a bit too bright. I am always conscious of using it and tend to point my light down further when I use flash mode. I wish there was different modes of flash, just like for steady. I have wondered if comparable lights from other manufactures also have such a bright flash mode, or if it a Nite rider thing. It literally makes road signs, license plates, and anything remotely reflective around you flash bright.

    I do think a reasonably powerful light for commuting at night is good, depending on what your commute is like. Half of my commute I have my light in low mode, but there are parts where I definitely appreciate the hi mode as they are not lit at all.

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