Looking forward to seeing your setup clydesdale
Looking forward to seeing your setup clydesdale
Great read! I have a question regarding batteries. I couldn't find the equasion to figure out how much amps a certain light will draw.
I'm trying to figure out if I can use a 14.8V 2300 mAh (4S1P A123 - from a Dewalt power pack) rated to 15C with a 12V 20W Halogen light MR16.
If that doesn't work, I might try my hand at one of the DIY LED lights.
Here is the setup. Sorry I took forever to post them let me know what you think. I know the electrical taped switches are kind of lame. I could not think of a better way to mount the switches in the cockpit. I had them in the trunk bag until i reached back to flip one and about wrecked. They are waterproof that I am sure of. Rode in a down pour and freezing drizzle.
WOW ! it has been a long time since I was in this thread , I was was last here about 1200 Posts ago !!
any way I still have been playing and here is my Latest creation
I have been watchingthe eveolution of the Highintensity LED's over the last couple years, I have done some experimenting , and I came up with one that has been working quite well .
First I got a Cree LED P4 a ( http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.4877 ) ( Next I'm Getting a Q5 emitter even brighter ( http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.2394 ) )
2nd I got a Current regulator ( http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.3256 )
and a Lens http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.4626 , other parts that I needed , but had a 4 AA batter y Holder ( www.bgmicro.com ) some speaker witer , an old Pentium 90 with Heat sink , the slot cover from a PC a SPST switch , 2 old Coke Caps ( with the points redeamed ) and some velcro.
First I attached the wires from the out put ofthe current regulator to the LED star and Connected some speaker wire to the Regulators input
then I took the Pentium with heat sink , ad removed the Fan and the Pentium . I took the heat Sink and marked the 4 holes for the lens to attach to. and 2 holes for the mounting bracket .
Next I put the LED star on the heat sink, and then the lens, the Lens has 4 post to screw into , so I screwed the 4 screws in holding the lens and LED in place.
Next I attached the PC slot cover bracket to teh Heat sink. Then Using a Hot Melt glue I attached one of the Coke caps
I cut a Small Notch in the coke cap on the top ( should have put it on the side or bottom ) then I put the current regulator and wire into the cap,
The I took the other Coke cap amd sealed them together with the hot melt making it ( hopefully ) water proof.
Now I took the other end of the Speaker wire ( about 4 feet ) and SOldered it to the leads of the 4 AA battery pack. this particulat pack has a wire running across the back, so I Cut it and soldered the switch in place there , then Used the hot met to attach it.
Next IPut velcro on Both my Helmet and the Bottom ofthe PC bracket , and I also Bent the PC bracket to give it a curve to match my Helmet
and I have been using this to commute , and I have also used it as my Sole light in the woods , It is no Match for an HID , but this cost me a total of Less than $25.
Still to Come
a) a Handle bar mounted one
b) a 2 -3 -4 Emmiter light
I am impressed. I followed the advice given here and built my own light system. It is blinding. I used a 12 volt lead sealed acid battery 5Ah, a 12 volt 50 watt outdoor spot light (the lawn and garden type), made a case out of pvc pipe fittings, used the wiring and the switch that is recommended for the power source I am using and lots of electrical tape.
When my wife saw me coming home, she mistook my bike for a motorcycle. It is much better than the led light that I bought at walmart. Only problem is the heat that the bulb generates. Do you think I can get the same brightness or improve the concentration of light into a narrower beam with a smaller watt bulb?
http://autolumination.com/mr16.htm ). I find I like the ones with 3 1-watt rather than 1 3-watt light source. The light is not as bright as a halogen, but I find it enough for seeing the road and to be seen by motorists.
"Bad facts make bad laws." FZ
Thanks for the tip. I switched to a 35 watt mr16 halogen bulb due to the melting of the pvc pipe from the 55 watt bulb. The run time is no problem with my commute being only 30 minutes.
I retired my light when I found a cheap HID lamp on ebay but I was pretty proud of my home built one. I used a small plastic spice jar and a 20W mr16 spot bulb. The bulb fits perfectly in the top of the jar. I trimmed about 1/8 inch from the top of the jar and cut a round hole in the lid. I cut a piece of glass the size of the inside of the cap. The cap screws on over all this, making it weather resistant and easy to change the light bulb. It was light enough that I mounted it on my helmet. I used it for mountain biking in the dark. I definately prefer the helmet mount. The light is always pointed where you're looking and it is great when you have to make a repair in the dark. I also added a dimmer in a separate control on top of my helmet so that I could save power when I didn't need as much light. I also added flashing LEDs pointing to the rear from my helmet top control. The LEDs were ripped from an old rear light. It was all just barely heavier than my current HID light. The battery was a standard SLA battery. I would share pictures, but alas, I gave the light away.
Are any of these systems built around using a front wheel dynamo to recharge the battery?
I am currently building a small Cree 5-powered LED headlight for my son's bike (it came with a front hub generator and light, but the OEM light is not good enough). After that is finished, I will build a similar light for my commuter, using a AXA HR bottle dynamo I got from SJS in the UK.
"Bad facts make bad laws." FZ
Thanks, that site looks very interesting. I do not own a Dynamo yet but the Sram Dynamo at around 70 might be an acceptable option. I have not found reviews comparing it to the Schmidt version which is touted as being the best one for efficiency. My front wheel being a 20 may play into the possibility of getting 10 Watts out put which would put it in the area that seems like it should be able to supplement a battery nicely and charge it back up during the day if necessary with that one HID working nicely at 10W. Although if the tech on the LEDs keeps going maybe by the time i decide whether or not to get a dynamo and which one there will be a real nice match?
My thoughts are that if i can whip myself into shape this spring i may wish to go on a week long ride either here in Colorado or someone was suggesting joining them on a trip across Wisconsin. Last fall i did take a ride of 27 miles from Akron to Yuma on a 20" wheeled Sun easy rider. I found the small wheel to be a limiting factor at times but i somehow survived... So when the weather starts to get warmer again I hope to start making a pilgrimmage to build up endurance on the weekends. But the thought has crossed my mind that i do not wish to depend on being able to plug in to charge batteries if i decide to try one of the longer rides. As a commuter a battery powered headlamp on my head works well so far...
I would really like to see what you come up with using the Cree 5 set up.
2 each cushioned 3/4" pipe brackets from Ace Hardware @ $1.29 ea and 1 AA flashlight from local Dollar Store for $1 (included batteries) = $3.58
Swipe some of your girlfriend's fingernail polish - it's a taillight; x2 = $7.16
Bicycle - teaching topography since 1790
I'm ready to build a second system now that I've got a few thousand miles on the first one. I liked Frankenbiker's use of a circuit breaker instead of a fuse . . . can anyone recommend a weatherproof 10 amp mini-breaker?
I replaced my fuse with an ATC blade type circuit breaker (10 amp in my case, part number 46610) from Waytekwire.com. Unfortunately, the circuit breaker wouldn't fit in the fuse holder so I used female blade terminals with heatshrink insulation to connect it into the circuit. It has worked perfectly ever since.
The circuit breaker may not be sufficiently weatherproof to survive without some form of enclosure. Mine is housed inside a box under the deck of my Xtracycle which keeps it out of the rain. If you want one to hang outside you may need to dip it in a plastic coating to keep it dry.
Last edited by Frankenbiker; 03-14-09 at 08:08 AM.
Not as green as I might be cabbage looking!
weatherpak connectors won't fit on the the terminals. I'm talking about 1/4 inch blade terminals available from automotive parts stores that push onto the circuit breaker terminals. Then use heatshrink to cover the terminals. If the circuit breaker will be exposed to the elements, it could be dipped into rubber/plastic coating like the type used to coat tool handles. This would seal the breaker from rain, salt spray, etcetera.
I have looked through but not found anything that quite matches what I want. I am considering building a light to go on a dynohub, I was thinking about getting the schmidt one if the light doesn't cost too much.
Basically I require the following:
- high output - hoping for around 1000 lumens
- standlight - for a few minutes
- something that doesn't blind drivers
- something for road use to show me both the road ahead and potholes
- something that I can move between 2 bikes easily
- a tail light of around 500 lumens or so - this should have a filter to enable cars to see me best from a distance and from the side
- something that uses LEDs
- easy to build!
I know this is quite a lot but hopefully it is plausible! I have been looking at prebuilt lights such as the supernova e3 triple but they are quite pricey and at least if I built it myself I can change the LEDs when better ones come out.
How hard is it to build a light, I have a soldering iron but minimal experience! I have taken a look at http://www.pilom.com/BicycleElectron...moCircuits.htm and assume that I'd require one of these circuits. I am not good at building enclosures so are there any prebuilt enclosures out there that are waterproof?
Many thanks in advance,
Last edited by daven1986; 03-22-09 at 06:52 AM.
If you love geek bike lights check out what I've been riding recently:
I dug up some electronic garbage including some laser disks, an exit sign, and a relay test board and created a bike only an engineering student could own.
Heres my latest dyno light. Almost 500lm off the dyno.
This is the easiest build yet.
Martins circuit 10 again because it works so well. Circuit in a small box under the stem.
I used inch square section, walls around 2mm thick. Perfect fit for the 20mm XP-E triple, 16 degree loaded with R2s.
I tested a section on the bench with a few leds running at 5W to test heat dissipation, fine with a small fan running. Also noted the bar heats up evenly so 2mm seems to be thick enough to spread the heat around.
Bored a big hole towards one end to let the light out. Chopped a small grove in the other end for cable relief and a matching groove in one of the plastic ends.
Bracket is a flex-tight from cateye, only modification needed was a longer screw (screw head inside the light).
I put the C1 capacitor inside the light head but you could leave it remote. This gives extra cooling area as the light is longer and gives me the option of flipping the light up if using a handlebar bag.
To seal the light I used mylar OHP sheets siliconed to the housing front. To get a perfect fit I taped the sheet to some section and sat in boiling water so it took the shape of the bar. It hazed somewhat but I polished this off. The end caps are sealed with silicone too.
You could run a couple of the triples in the housing but you might want to put some cooling fins on the sides.
A buckpuck is a perfect fit in there too if you're into that sort of thing.
Normal setup, note it hangs below the cable so no annoying shadows.
I want to thank everyone in here for the inspiration in building my first 'geek' light. Although simple, it is far more effective than I expected. I still have a couple of tweeks to do..... but the gist is a "malabu" garden/yard housing with a 50w spot, 12v 12 Ah battery which just lights the heck out of the night.
I gave it the first test run last night and it was da bomb ...and just in time. I was running my NightHawk along side of it and the battery on that finally gave up the ghost. Course.... now I have this really nice - purpose built housing and switch to cannibalize. Hmm,
I went with the 12Ah battery since I can also add tail and side lights and I'm thinking a horn too.
Peace. It does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble or hard work. It means to be in the midst of those things and still be calm.
In response to bicycling being so dangerous: "We could all died today from any number of accidents. I'm not going to stop living to keep from dying." The Northern Tier by Lief Carlsen