Bike Forums

Bike Forums (http://www.bikeforums.net/forum.php)
-   Electronics, Lighting, & Gadgets (http://www.bikeforums.net/electronics-lighting-gadgets/)
-   -   Light selection guide. (http://www.bikeforums.net/electronics-lighting-gadgets/142723-light-selection-guide.html)

NeezyDeezy 08-19-06 11:13 AM

my opinion? expensive

feethanddooth 08-21-06 06:50 PM

hi

bmike 08-21-06 07:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by feethanddooth
anyone have any opinions of this light....?

cateye LD100 safety light

I've used it off and on - it straps easily to helmets, packs, chainstays, etc.
I wouldn't use it as my only red blinkie... but it works great as a secondary.
Still on the first battery - 2 years and counting.

Mr_H 08-22-06 12:49 PM

*rubs eyes*
I've read this thread....still unsure about exactly what it is I should get. Got a couple of scenarios :)

For the most part I do not ride in the dark, but as winter approaches, I'll need something for some visiblity (In my area it starts getting light around 7-730 in the morning and dark around 5 in the evening (December)).
There are two possible roads for me to travel on, one is extremly well lit (But super busy) and the other is 'so so' for the most part (a few areas of no lights, but also very little traffic).

I currently have a small flasher for the front (hey, look at me!) and a red blinker in the back. I've been thinking about getting more lights, but I have a few requirements.
-Can't be too expensive, my paycheck will not allow me to afford those $100+ lights:(
-Must be able to remove easily (transfer between bikes).

I've been thinking of purchasing a Cateye HL-EL500 ($40) for the front or 2 Cateye EL 300s ($20 each) for the front.
For the back, I think my blinker will do fine, but I plan on getting some of those Cateye LD100 safetylights to attach for better visiblitily.
Course...reflective tape as well :)

From people with experience with these types/conditions: Would that be a cheap solution? I know I'm not going trail riding at midnight with this setup. I just want to be seen a bit more, and see a lil better :)

Thanks

2manybikes 08-22-06 04:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mr_H
*rubs eyes*
I've read this thread....still unsure about exactly what it is I should get. Got a couple of scenarios :)

For the most part I do not ride in the dark, but as winter approaches, I'll need something for some visiblity (In my area it starts getting light around 7-730 in the morning and dark around 5 in the evening (December)).
There are two possible roads for me to travel on, one is extremly well lit (But super busy) and the other is 'so so' for the most part (a few areas of no lights, but also very little traffic).

I currently have a small flasher for the front (hey, look at me!) and a red blinker in the back. I've been thinking about getting more lights, but I have a few requirements.
-Can't be too expensive, my paycheck will not allow me to afford those $100+ lights:(
-Must be able to remove easily (transfer between bikes).

I've been thinking of purchasing a Cateye HL-EL500 ($40) for the front or 2 Cateye EL 300s ($20 each) for the front.
For the back, I think my blinker will do fine, but I plan on getting some of those Cateye LD100 safetylights to attach for better visiblitily.
Course...reflective tape as well :)

From people with experience with these types/conditions: Would that be a cheap solution? I know I'm not going trail riding at midnight with this setup. I just want to be seen a bit more, and see a lil better :)

Thanks

Don't use the Cateye LD 100 lights, they hang by a bungee cord. LED taillights are all very directional, they need to be aimed and fixed solid to horizontal and aimed straight back. Any lights that are not, or that move as you ride, lose 90% of the power and the usefulness. Buy the Cateye TL-LD 1000 not 100 (extra zero at the end !) It's around $25 ish. It also has side pointing LEDs and can be seen from almost in front of the bike. There are lots of similar lights, but this one is better. Don't be cheap about being seen from behind.

For the front, it depends on how long you need the light to work for. The Handlebar LED lights don't let you see the ground very well. If you only need a couple of hours run time you can get a Halogen rechargeable light on sale from Performance or Nashbar for around $75 to $100 depending on the time of year. You will get much more light and can see the ground better. Most have quick release brackets for the light head, you might have to get other brackets for other bikes or maybe not, it depends on the exact light you find.

jdmac 08-22-06 06:52 PM

New BatterySpace 20w Dual Halogen
 
just arrived. The Vendor's store/item listed here:

https://www.batteryspace.com/index.a...OD&ProdID=1369

I'm commuter... about 30mi round trip daily plus many New Mexico weekend &
club rides. I went through all the LED lights trying to avoid more expensive HID/Halogen
setup, w/little satisfaction (cheap is sometimes expensive), then bought Alias 10w Halogen,
Part # 3026 from Planet Bike:
http://www.planetbike.com/highpower.html#
which I used for about 7 months until light was stolen w/bike a few weeks ago.

The Alias was more than satisfactory: light mount was flexible in positioning,strong
and very well made. Safe charger for NiMH battery pack. The 10w spot beam was
excellent, even on unlit roads. Only gripes:
a) advertised 2 1/2 burn time was not enough... too many times I finished night rides
w/battery gone. And burn time closer to 2 hrs.
b) Planet bike had no hardware for light<>battery pack extension, which was
too short to carry battery on belt or in pack. I made one up w/few things
from Radio Shack, but it cost about $20.

Ok, so bike/ight was stolen, I got new bike & I shopped lights... @ bike shops,
Google, Nashbar etc. for several evenings. I Decided to take a chance on this
BatterySpace light. I had email conversations w/one of their techs prior to
purchase, he was responsive and helpful. And their articles seemed professional
and informative. This light, @ $129, nothing else really close for that price. What
really sold me was 4 hr burn time for 15w. They sell bulbs for $2.99, so I bought
additional 10/12w flood and spot since the 10w was good enough before. I assume
that's going to jump burn time running 1 lamp a good bit above 4 hrs. I'll let u know.

So I unpacked it all today... a few problems.

- No battery pack case
- Charger connection to battery is blk/rd aligator clips, not dual pin
connector the light requires. In other words, I can't charge it.

(sigh).

I got on the phone, tech guy was responsive & helpful... he asked me to email
photograph which I did: said he suspected they sent me wrong charger. I'll
let you know how that goes. He said he would mail out the battery pack
(belt/handlebar) case.

So I thought by chance battery may be charged, and indeed it is. I'll take it out
for a spin after dark and report back.

Initial impressions:
- the dual headlight enclosure is aluminum... seems strong & well made.
Handle bar mount is 2 thumbscrews, seems solid enough. (The Alias mount
was a bit more secure IMO).
Right now, I'd give build quality +/-8.5, design 7.5.
- Documentation was near nil... nothing for the charger!!! The charger appears
to be made by batterspace from other components they sell, tied together in
moderately thick 2 piece shrink wrap black plastic. I kind'a like the Alias
hard plastic enclosure a little better now. :( I have a concern wiring could
be yanked out of battery w/fall or accidental (something).

I'll reserve judgement on this until bar/belt case arrives and I use it a bit.

Ok, I'll update impressions of light after couple nights of riding, along w/response
and action by Batteryspace to straighten out charger problem.

FWIW, I bought several other items from them:
- I have a (name brand, forgot the name... label has long worn off) 3 mode,
flat light that came w/adjustable & robust elastic strap which can easily
go on arm/wrist/ankle (I attach it to rear of back pack) and makes a
good tail light. It takes 2 2032 disk batteries, which go for $4.99 a pop
in Walgreens. I use 'em up on average every 2 weeks.

So I ordered BatterySpace's 2032 LIon & charger for about $10. Listed here:
https://www.batteryspace.com/index.a...OD&ProdID=2421
Again, instructions/documentation a little better but as others have noted appears
to be written by non-native speakers... eg:, it's approx 100% unintelligable.

Instructions indicated charge time 1.2 hrs per battery (2.4 for 2 of 'em). This
charger got 'em both ready in about 40 mins. Charger seems just a tad flimsy,
but not too bad. There is warning against overcharging even though this is
supposed to be a "smart" charger. I asked tech guy about this when calling
on other stuff, he said a couple hours extra in the socket won't hurt but
try not to leave it in overnight. :( Since there's warning in instructions not
to use charger in room w/carpet (presumably fire hazard warning), I think
I'll take that to heart.

Regardless, batteries charged right up and light works like new Energizer
2032s... so even if I only get 6 months out this rig, still damn good deal
for me.

Charger was supposed to come w/1 battery so I ordered 1 extra. Batteryspace
included 3 extra (4 total) at no charge.

- bought charger & 2 batteries for my Nikkon point and click:

https://www.batteryspace.com/index.a...ROD&ProdID=910

Instructions a little better, still not quite up to par. This charger seems better
made than 2032. Batteries charged right up in 3hrs <, as Batteryspace said.
These things cost +/- $10 a piece @ Walgreens, so again... won't take a lot
of recharges for this thing to pay for itself. And if burn time for these things
even close to what Batteryspace claims, I'll get at least 25% more pics per
battery out of these things.

feethanddooth 08-23-06 08:04 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bmike
I've used it off and on - it straps easily to helmets, packs, chainstays, etc.
I wouldn't use it as my only red blinkie... but it works great as a secondary.
Still on the first battery - 2 years and counting.

thanks. i will get one and let you guys know what i think

Mr_H 08-23-06 09:25 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 2manybikes
For the front, it depends on how long you need the light to work for. The Handlebar LED lights don't let you see the ground very well. If you only need a couple of hours run time you can get a Halogen rechargeable light on sale from Performance or Nashbar for around $75 to $100 depending on the time of year. You will get much more light and can see the ground better. Most have quick release brackets for the light head, you might have to get other brackets for other bikes or maybe not, it depends on the exact light you find.

Thanks for the advice 2many....I just saw on Nashbar they have a Nite Hawk Phoenix (SE) 10w Light System (link!) for 50% off, which throws it into my price category. Considering that one now, definitly more powerful, and the run time is within my needs :)

2manybikes 08-23-06 10:20 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mr_H
Thanks for the advice 2many....I just saw on Nashbar they have a Nite Hawk Phoenix (SE) 10w Light System (link!) for 50% off, which throws it into my price category. Considering that one now, definitly more powerful, and the run time is within my needs :)

That Nite Hawk Phoenix (SE) looks like a good light for the price. The automatic charger is a nice benefit at that price.

sherpa93 08-26-06 11:09 PM

4 Attachment(s)
Possum detector

Jun 05 I T boned a possum on a gravel road. This was at 10 mph. Had a Cateye EL 500 mounted on fork.Great light but not enough side spill for me to see this critter. So I started looking at other lights. Some good LED lights out there. Blackburn X6 looked good. Spot and flood. Too many $. So I bought 6 Luxeon 3's from Lumileds @ $3.65 ea. Some L2 optics from Finland. I designed this light. Its made of Poplar! Why? Because wood is easy to shape. The heatsink is 1/2 of pentium with an air duct
like an A7. The optics are 5 deg spot and an oval 5 deg tall X 20 deg wide. The idea is oval beam to light both sides of road and spot for serious speed. Both are dimmable for traffic. It will use 10 AA cells and
6 hr duration at 100%. Probably much more when dimmed some (City). Shape was an evolution to make it look different than the average light. Each side is adjustable up/down. I think I can beat the $200 blackburn for about $60. Its in progress and my Hungarian friends who are making driver electronics are smart. Smart enough to not work so hard..HeHe This will be a great light system.

CrosseyedCrickt 08-28-06 08:56 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by HiYoSilver
Apples and oranges. Gnumeric is only spreadsheet. OpenOffice is a suite similar to MsOffice and imports/exports well all MsOffice file types.

Biggest changes with 2 are
1. oasis file format, i.e. open file sharing format for greater compatibility. On track to be the html standard for applications. First suite to meet this new standards. More coming next year.
2. spreadsheets are now full length and Excel sheets are now on one sheet instead of split over two sheets.

The OO ver 2 right now is beta, but expect full general release soon.

If you want more details, see the information about the parent Software -- StarOffice 8.
http://www.sun.com/software/star/sta...e/features.jsp

It's only $69 and comes with 60 days of free support.

The ability to export to PDF from the menu is really cool. Here's a SO vs MsOffice quick comparison. 52 million users. Notice how Microsoft is now scrambling to improve MsOffice because of this competition? Did you see how Mass is replacing MsOffice with OpenOffice?
http://www.sun.com/software/star/sta...itive_view.jsp

Other things that would be good to add to sheet comparison is:
1. type of battery used: LA, Ion, Nimh, etc
2. weight
3. mount: bar, head, both

pft!!
a real man just runs strings on it to pull out the pertinant information
anything else can be found with vi, you can read raw code right?

Mr_H 09-08-06 09:11 AM

Question for folks with the CatEye TL-LD1000 - I know it comes with a seat post connector (see that in the pictures), but does it come with a connector for a rack? I can't easily put one of these on my seat post, what with my bag under it and a cable lock already mounted there....so I want to move it back to the rear of the rack. That's an awefully thin tube back there, and it's angled different from the seat post.

Do they come with additional connectors? Or any ideas?

thanks

mechBgon 09-08-06 09:47 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mr_H
Question for folks with the CatEye TL-LD1000 - I know it comes with a seat post connector (see that in the pictures), but does it come with a connector for a rack? I can't easily put one of these on my seat post, what with my bag under it and a cable lock already mounted there....so I want to move it back to the rear of the rack. That's an awefully thin tube back there, and it's angled different from the seat post.

The LD1000 will attach to any US-type two-hole reflector bracket. It comes with a coarse-thread screw for that purpose. If the bracket is not very thick, put a washer under the head of the screw so it doesn't go into the light too deep (causing a bulge in the wall of the battery compartment).

Besides the screw, they also come with a belt clip (not a good idea for an LD1000 because aim is critical) and a seatpost-mounting bracket.

LD1000's are a rear-heavy light, and may bend or break light-duty reflector brackets over the course of time. They are also very directional, so they must be mounted rigidly and aimed just right if you want them to be effective. Here's a bracket I rigged for an LD1000 that I was giving away:

http://www.mechbgon.com/visibility/bracket.jpg

This bracket is made of parts from two nylon reflector brackets, and it allows the light to be angled just right. If you're a good customer of a local bike shop, ask them to do you a favor and help cook up a good strong mount for your LD1000.

woodcycl 09-08-06 09:16 PM

After some searching, I haven't found any information on which lights come with handlebar mounts that allow you to attach a light to the carbon flat-top handlebars (specifically, the FSA Kwing). Any suggestions?

mechBgon 09-09-06 12:51 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by woodcycl
After some searching, I haven't found any information on which lights come with handlebar mounts that allow you to attach a light to the carbon flat-top handlebars (specifically, the FSA Kwing). Any suggestions?

Are you looking for a "see-me" light, a small basic one? Or do you want a powerful show-me-the-roadway light?

Mr_H 09-09-06 07:28 AM

mechBgon

Thanks for the tips. I'll make sure to get a heavy duty reflector bracket :)

woodcycl 09-09-06 06:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mechBgon
Are you looking for a "see-me" light, a small basic one? Or do you want a powerful show-me-the-roadway light?

mechBgon -- I'm looking more for a show-me-the-road lighting system. I have a Cateye LED light (Power OptiCube) now that I bought last year. However, it is only bright enough to help me be seen. I use a Cateye L1000 on the rear. It appears that I'll need to "rig" something up if possible to get it to mount on my Kwing flat-top bars.

I'd like to obtain a mid-level headlight to show the roadway for those rides when I am out at dark trying to get home. I have no desire to have the "best" but something mid-level (under $300 ... and $200 or under is ideal).

But, it is the flat-top bars that seem to be my main issue currently. Any suggestions?

2manybikes 09-10-06 10:21 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by woodcycl
mechBgon -- I'm looking more for a show-me-the-road lighting system. I have a Cateye LED light (Power OptiCube) now that I bought last year. However, it is only bright enough to help me be seen. I use a Cateye L1000 on the rear. It appears that I'll need to "rig" something up if possible to get it to mount on my Kwing flat-top bars.

I'd like to obtain a mid-level headlight to show the roadway for those rides when I am out at dark trying to get home. I have no desire to have the "best" but something mid-level (under $300 ... and $200 or under is ideal).

But, it is the flat-top bars that seem to be my main issue currently. Any suggestions?

The HID light from batteryspace.com is bar mount and $199.00 bit it won't fit your bars. There may be no "see the road" type lights that will fit those bars for that price. Unless you want to make your own bracket. That's not hard to do.

But a $185 HID helmet light from batteryspace will do the job. Along with other helmet mount lights.

wez312 09-12-06 02:03 PM

Would these show me the ground pretty well at night or no?

http://www.batteryspace.com/index.as...OD&ProdID=2228

And if not is there something sub $100 anyone could recommend?

Thanks

robtown 09-12-06 05:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by wez312
Would these show me the ground pretty well at night or no?

http://www.batteryspace.com/index.as...OD&ProdID=2228

And if not is there something sub $100 anyone could recommend?

That will probably work but you have to buy a battery system. I bought this for myself and my son. It bailed me out once when my helmet light battery died. Trade off cost for heavier SLA battery. Remember to use the Nashbar 10% code listed so often here.
http://www.nashbar.com/profile.cfm?c...%20Nite%20Hawk

2manybikes 09-12-06 06:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by wez312
Would these show me the ground pretty well at night or no?

http://www.batteryspace.com/index.as...OD&ProdID=2228

And if not is there something sub $100 anyone could recommend?

Thanks

As mentioned you need to add a battery to make that work. The batteries are linked to that page. The first one I went was $69.00 the others are less I think. You are around the $100 mark. That light will show the ground, but you need to consider run time, that changes the battery and the price just as much as power. The run times on the batteries are shown on the battery page.

40x14 09-13-06 08:48 AM

I love these roll-your-own lights and DIY mods. Wish I had the drive to make one. But I'm lazy. I know my limitations. My version of DIY usuallys involves zip-ties or black electrical tape.

So last autumn I bought a nightrider nr-20 digital on eBay for $65. The remote-on switch was malfunctioning and even though it was perfectly usable with the built-in on/off switch -- I sent it back to nightrider and they fixed it. They charged me the standard $20 lifetime service fee.

This light is so bright it puts everything that's not HID to shame. I can light up the road 100 feet ahead of me, and have mistaken other cyclists reflectors for bike lights due to the brightness of my nr20. It came with a battery pack and digital charger as well as a helmet mount. Sometimes I'll even use it on overcast days - it helps ensure I'm being seen by motorists.

Good luck! Bike lights rule.

PS. I also have a bunch of LED lights, including one that uses a 3 watt luxeon emitter. IMHO the LED lights don't cast as anywhere near as broad or bright a beam as the nr20.

balto charlie 09-13-06 09:46 AM

Hey folks: I am going to need a new headlight at some point this season for my commuting. My old Performance 10W(12?) light is into it's 4th year and I ride all year. I am looking at the Cateye dualshot($175)or tripleshot($200) VS the batteryspaces HID($185):
http://www.batteryspace.com/index.as...odID=1395&HS=1

Here's some recent advice from a pro Cateye Doubleshot rider. This is from a mnt biker (not commuter):

.....It's 2, 3-watt luxon LEDs, with a NiMh battery
(with a thermocouple, and a dT/dt smart charger - that's the best (but most
expensive) way to know if a battery is fully charged in case you where
wondering). It runs for 5.5-6 hours on a 3-hour charge. The battery straps
to the frame or stem or in your pocket (doesn't take a bottle cage). I've
run it head to head with an L&M HID and, well it's hard to compare
brightness, but the HID isn't overwhelmingly better. I'd say the HID is a
wider beam, but the Doubleshot is brighter in the center (when it's really
dark you can see farther away with the Cateye). The Cateye runs MUCH cooler
than any incandescent or HID light out there (cateye isn't even warm after
running for 4 hours, a 20w halogen you might burn yourself if you touched
the housing), the LEDs last forever (HID bulbs are very expensive and
turning the light on and off quickly shortens the life, halogens burn out
seemingly at the worst times - when you first turn them on, the LEDs in the
doubleshot would last upwards of 17 years if run for 8 hours a day). The
doubleshot uses the same mounting bracket as the LD-300 and 500 lights, and
comes with a helmet mount (and extension cable). It's got locking connectors
that are great.....

Any other thoughts on these 2 systems. I went to Eddy's to compare but no Cateyes.
http://eddys.com/page.cfm?PageID=493
Seems the tripleshot is often compared to a 20W Halogen which(according to Eddys pix) is somewhat close to a HID. Thanks Charlie

stapfam 09-13-06 03:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by balto charlie
Hey folks: I am going to need a new headlight at some point this season for my commuting. My old Performance 10W(12?) light is into it's 4th year and I ride all year. I am looking at the Cateye dualshot($175)or tripleshot($200) VS the batteryspaces HID($185):
http://www.batteryspace.com/index.as...odID=1395&HS=1

Here's some recent advice from a pro Cateye Doubleshot rider. This is from a mnt biker (not commuter):

.....It's 2, 3-watt luxon LEDs, with a NiMh battery
(with a thermocouple, and a dT/dt smart charger - that's the best (but most
expensive) way to know if a battery is fully charged in case you where
wondering). It runs for 5.5-6 hours on a 3-hour charge. The battery straps
to the frame or stem or in your pocket (doesn't take a bottle cage). I've
run it head to head with an L&M HID and, well it's hard to compare
brightness, but the HID isn't overwhelmingly better. I'd say the HID is a
wider beam, but the Doubleshot is brighter in the center (when it's really
dark you can see farther away with the Cateye). The Cateye runs MUCH cooler
than any incandescent or HID light out there (cateye isn't even warm after
running for 4 hours, a 20w halogen you might burn yourself if you touched
the housing), the LEDs last forever (HID bulbs are very expensive and
turning the light on and off quickly shortens the life, halogens burn out
seemingly at the worst times - when you first turn them on, the LEDs in the
doubleshot would last upwards of 17 years if run for 8 hours a day). The
doubleshot uses the same mounting bracket as the LD-300 and 500 lights, and
comes with a helmet mount (and extension cable). It's got locking connectors
that are great.....

Any other thoughts on these 2 systems. I went to Eddy's to compare but no Cateyes.
http://eddys.com/page.cfm?PageID=493
Seems the tripleshot is often compared to a 20W Halogen which(according to Eddys pix) is somewhat close to a HID. Thanks Charlie

Just bought the Exposure Enduro Turbo and this uses two 5W luxions. I ride off road and Have only done one offroad jaunt with them so far and on this ride they were up to the standard of the affordable HID's that I was looking at.

The Exposure for this year has has the Turbo feature. Put it this way- Last year I used 2x10w halogens. On the low setting with the exposure It was as good as the 2x10w. on the intermediate setting it was good enough to really hammer on. On the turbo setting- WOW.

Still have a bit of setting up to get the best out of the lamp- but anyone dismissing Luxion LED's as not powerful enough- Think again

http://www.use1.com/exposure/dealers...eb_dealers.php

noisebeam 09-19-06 03:58 PM

Question on the TrailTech Eclipse HID Bar Mount Bike Light with Smart Charger and waterproof cable

Can the 4Ah battery pack in case be attached to top tube? (instead of bars)
It looks like a lot of extra cabling, can this be installed with good wire managment, so there are no loose cable and/or multiple wraps to take up slack?
With a clean install, can it be easily removed and replaced?
I would buy this to replace the Cygolite NiteRover xtra (10x6w halogen) - Anyone used both and can say the TrailTech is much better?
Al


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:22 PM.