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Old 09-14-07, 10:04 AM   #1
bikegummo
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Smile Planetbike Alias SC or Light & Motion Solo

I've been reading and rereading everything I can on bike lights, and I think I'm down to these two options. I ride a road bike, and it's getting to be dark before I can finish my ride (and it's only going to get darker as the year rolls on).

I ride on poorly lit paved roads and greenways (often completely dark in patches) with occasional cars (usually in Central Park here in NYC), and I usually average around 18-19 mph. After looking at scvoid's excellent spreadsheet and reading everything I can, I think I need a fairly powerful light to accommodate speed and to realistically avoid branches and holes. Lastly I MUST stay under US$200.

With all that said, I've narrowed down my choices to one of the L&M Solo series lights, or the Alias SC. Can anyone weigh in on which way to go? And if there is something else I should reconsider that's maybe a bit leaner and meaner (but still a real headlight), please throw it out there. It just HAS to be under $200 (the more under the better).

Thanks for any help!
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Old 09-14-07, 10:10 AM   #2
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How about a used L&M Arc?
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Old 09-14-07, 10:15 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by paulrad9 View Post
How about a used L&M Arc?
Thanks for the reply.

I haven't seen anything used that's either affordable or powerful enough. And I'm kinda stuck now, since I don't want to wait till something turns up (if I wait, I'll have to cut my rides short, which kills me). So I figure I'll buy new so I can have it immediately.
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Old 09-14-07, 10:49 AM   #4
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You might want to take a look at fenix flashlights (as mentioned here). According to the website, the Fenix L2D puts out 175 lumens of light with 2.4 hours battery life. Two of these, with batteries and charger, would set you back about $160, and according to the specs, would give you two+ hours of light with more light than Princeton Tec Switchback 3 or a Cateye Tripleshot. I have an SB3(since died and returned for warranty repair) and while the SB3 has great battery life, I decided that I should have extra lights for the oh ****! scenario. ("Oh ****! The battery is dead!"). I should be getting mine either today or tomorrow, and once I get the SB3, I'll do beam shots of a blackburn quadrant, SB3 on low/medium/high, and the Dual Fenix on low/medium/high.
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Old 09-14-07, 10:55 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by bikegummo View Post
With all that said, I've narrowed down my choices to one of the L&M Solo series lights, or the Alias SC. Can anyone weigh in on which way to go?
I don't know anything about the L&M, but I have the Alias SC. It's a great light, but there are two things I really don't like about it. The first is that there are four different gizmos to attach to the bike (battery, light, switch, and another connector thingy) so it's not easy to take on and off. The second is the battery life; I can get 4 or 5 one-way commutes (45 minutes each) out of my light in the flashing mode. I hate having to recharge it every other day.

Performance-wise, I love it. But it's a pain in the neck.
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Old 09-14-07, 11:49 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by bikegummo View Post
I've been reading and rereading everything I can on bike lights, and I think I'm down to these two options. I ride a road bike, and it's getting to be dark before I can finish my ride (and it's only going to get darker as the year rolls on).

I ride on poorly lit paved roads and greenways (often completely dark in patches) with occasional cars (usually in Central Park here in NYC), and I usually average around 18-19 mph. After looking at scvoid's excellent spreadsheet and reading everything I can, I think I need a fairly powerful light to accommodate speed and to realistically avoid branches and holes. Lastly I MUST stay under US$200.

With all that said, I've narrowed down my choices to one of the L&M Solo series lights, or the Alias SC. Can anyone weigh in on which way to go? And if there is something else I should reconsider that's maybe a bit leaner and meaner (but still a real headlight), please throw it out there. It just HAS to be under $200 (the more under the better).

Thanks for any help!
Here are some alternatives:

1. Turbocat S15 (http://www.turbocatusa.com/config.html

2. Marwi Night Pro-Elite (http://www.pricepoint.com/detail/162...=20&zmap=16258

3. L&M Solo Logic (http://www.nashbar.com/profile.cfm?sku=15862

All great bright lights and all under $200.
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Old 09-14-07, 12:45 PM   #7
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Appreciate the help, everyone! Looking at the links you proved Sir Bikesalot. John, I'd love to see the comparisons you mentioned. And divingbiker--I was afraid the Alias SC might be a beast with lots of parts...that might be enough to rule this light out. In the end, I'm after a great (and bright) light, but if I can get that without the cumbersome part, I'm happy.

As it is, I'm really leaning towards the L&M Solo Logic...Is this light at Nashbar (mentioned by Sir Bikesalot)
http://www.nashbar.com/profile.cfm?sku=15862

the same as this light:
http://www.bikelights.com/Products/s..._liion_cub.htm

Difficult to tell for sure, as some specs seem to differ, and the (silly) names are slightly different. Could the Nashbar light be perhaps an older model?
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Old 09-14-07, 01:04 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by bikegummo View Post
Appreciate the help, everyone! Looking at the links you proved Sir Bikesalot. John, I'd love to see the comparisons you mentioned. And divingbiker--I was afraid the Alias SC might be a beast with lots of parts...that might be enough to rule this light out. In the end, I'm after a great (and bright) light, but if I can get that without the cumbersome part, I'm happy.

As it is, I'm really leaning towards the L&M Solo Logic...Is this light at Nashbar (mentioned by Sir Bikesalot)
http://www.nashbar.com/profile.cfm?sku=15862

the same as this light:
http://www.bikelights.com/Products/s..._liion_cub.htm

Difficult to tell for sure, as some specs seem to differ, and the (silly) names are slightly different. Could the Nashbar light be perhaps an older model?

I believe they are the same. "MV" refers to multi-volt, as in the headlamp can take any one of their different voltage batteries (NiMH, Li-ion, etc.). In this case nashbar lists it as "Solo Logic MV" but goes on to say it comes with a 180g Li-ion battery, which is L&M's Li-ion "Cub" battery.

I just ordered one myself, so I should know in a few days
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Old 09-14-07, 01:08 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by bikegummo View Post
Appreciate the help, everyone! Looking at the links you proved Sir Bikesalot. John, I'd love to see the comparisons you mentioned.
See this thread:

Dual Fenix L2D 100 Premium Headlight Setup (Photos)
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Old 09-14-07, 01:40 PM   #10
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I was just checking that out, but then I decided to stop blabbing about it and order the Solo (that you ordered). Looks like good deal. Really appreciate all the help, and the link to the light over at Nashbar.
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Old 09-15-07, 02:22 AM   #11
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AE Bike currently has the Planet Bike Alias SC Headlight on sale as their 'deal of the day' for $83. The offer in good from 9/14/2007 to 9/17/2007.

http://aebike.com/itemdetails.cfm?catalogId=39&id=706
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Old 09-15-07, 07:50 AM   #12
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I just started looking into lights for my bike. I do road riding and want to ride mostly in the evenings/nights as that is the only time work allows me. I need something very very bright as there is no light at all in the roads I ride and they are not the cleanest/best roads either.

I have not done much reading on these things yet, but I was under the impression the LED lights would be the best thing as they can be extremely bright and make the battery last much longer than the HID lights. Am I wrong on this?

Please educate me some or provide me with some informational links/threads to read over to educate myself. I guess I am a bit behind your point of search, but the fact that you have read on these already can save some reading time.

Thanks
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Old 09-15-07, 08:07 AM   #13
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Hi,
recharging is a fact of life, and unless you get a generator hub you will still be doing it.

get another Alias ( I have two) and you just might be able to make it through the week without charging. In any case you won't have to do it so often.

http://www.performancebike.com/shop/...tegory_ID=4320
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Old 09-16-07, 02:12 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by dgasmd View Post
I just started looking into lights for my bike. I do road riding and want to ride mostly in the evenings/nights as that is the only time work allows me. I need something very very bright as there is no light at all in the roads I ride and they are not the cleanest/best roads either.

I have not done much reading on these things yet, but I was under the impression the LED lights would be the best thing as they can be extremely bright and make the battery last much longer than the HID lights. Am I wrong on this?

Please educate me some or provide me with some informational links/threads to read over to educate myself. I guess I am a bit behind your point of search, but the fact that you have read on these already can save some reading time.

Thanks
I just got a Dinotte 200L that uses AA rechargables. It lights up the road enough to ride 20 mph. Completely dark roads are easy, your eyes adapt to the dark and the light seems very bright. Alternating patches of street lights and dark sections are harder to see in.

The light shows the whole lane, but I can't turn onto a side street at a fast speed, because it doesn't light up enough of an angle away from the beam. I'm going to get a spotlight for my helmet, right now I'm using a $10 Lowes LED headlamp similar to this. I want one a bit lighter weight or with longer runtime.

With the Dinotte, I got over 2 hours of runtime with 2500mAh batteries on high beam. And the light comes with an extra battery holder, so it's easy to bring a second set. The battery pouch is strapped to the stem. I picked this light because I can replace the batteries cheaply and carry a spare, the o-ring mount is easy to attach, and the whole thing is small and lightweight.

HID lights are much more expensive, but they are very efficient, so will make a lot of light with a small battery. But you can't just turn them on and off easily, and the replacement bulbs are expensive, too.

Halogen lights are cheap but require larger batteries than LED or HID lights.

Last edited by rm -rf; 09-16-07 at 02:17 PM.
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