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Old 03-05-09, 09:17 PM   #1
RepWI
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Helmut lighting - Advice needed

I live in a small college town. I bike year round with my winter biking basically being running family errands, shopping etc. I want to expand my comfort level with night riding with a goal to eliminate one of our two autos.

I Currently use:
A Trustfire P7 3 mode that I run on strobe during the day.
I also have a 3 LED Planet Bike Beamer as backup and do run it as well.
On the back I have the Vetta TSL - C

I just ordered some SpokLits from NiteIze for side visability.

I would like to be able to, "Greet" automobiles when I am at a stop sign or light using a helmet mounted light.

---I would like a flashlight that uses the 18650 recharagble battery.
---I would like a light weight unit.
---In an ideal world, there would be a red or amber light on the back. (I am open to suggestions on another separate unit as well.)

What advice might you folks have for this type of application?
Ordering from Deal Extreme takes forever, if there is reasonable alternatives I would rather move a bit quicker.

Thanks

Last edited by RepWI; 03-06-09 at 07:35 AM.
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Old 03-06-09, 02:22 AM   #2
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I Currently use:
A Trustfire P7 3 mode that I run on strobe during the day.
I also have a 3 LED Planet Bike Beamer as backup and do run it as well.
On the back I have the Vetta TSL - C
Are any of these helmet mounted ?
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Old 03-06-09, 07:34 AM   #3
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Are any of these helmet mounted ?
No, none are helmet mounted. The helmet light is a new addition.
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Old 03-06-09, 07:39 AM   #4
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My Bell helmet has an adjustment strap on the backside that hangs below the helmet. I find that a perfect place to hang a second rear light. On a cold night, that flashing light even keeps my neck a little warm... I figure that a perfect place for motorist's vision behind me, since it is close to their eye level. That Bell Helmet is definitely my night helmet.
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Old 03-06-09, 07:56 AM   #5
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How much light and what runtime are you hoping for ?
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Old 03-06-09, 08:17 AM   #6
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How much light and what runtime are you hoping for ?
TY for your response.

In general I would be riding on fairly well lit city streets. Not busy streets, but rather the, "back roads". The helmet light in reality is a, "to be seen" light as the P7 meets my headlight needs very well.

My run time is certainly under an hour.



TY cyclezealot - I will soon be in the market for a new helmet as well and will keep what you say in mind.
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Old 03-06-09, 12:34 PM   #7
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The helmet light in reality is a, "to be seen" light as the P7 meets my headlight needs very well.
Just fit some blinkies, they will do what you want, have longer runtimes and be cheaper and lighter.

Safer too.

There are some dodgy looking torch helmet mounts on this forum, that you wouldn't want on your head in the event of an accident.....
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Old 03-06-09, 01:03 PM   #8
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Just fit some blinkies, they will do what you want, have longer runtimes and be cheaper and lighter.

Safer too.

There are some dodgy looking torch helmet mounts on this forum, that you wouldn't want on your head in the event of an accident.....
I have noticed some brain impalers myself. Have you ever used cable ties?
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Old 03-06-09, 01:20 PM   #9
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I'm not sure if you've considered any of these ?

I started off with one of these 1 Watt Luxeon and then rewired it to have all the LEDs lit and to remove the modes I didn't want.

I then replaced it with 2 of these 1 Watt Mini each of these is much brighter than the first one even after the first one was modified.

I might try this one next Seoul 3W or I might scratch build a 3 x R2 or P7 helmet light.

Here's my first helmet light Post 30 onwards and here's the full DX range Headlamps might be worth having a look through them, lots of them have strobe.


Last edited by Unknown Cyclist; 03-06-09 at 01:24 PM.
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Old 03-06-09, 02:14 PM   #10
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trustfire TR-801, one of the smaller flashlights that use 18650, only slightly larger than the battery itself.
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Old 03-12-09, 06:44 AM   #11
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Unknown Cyclist got me to thinking about mounting a light to a helmet. It really does need to be able to break away from the helmet in an accident. This is something I would not have thought of.

Is there a thread like the P7 flashlight thread set up for helmet lighting and mounting? I found that reading all of that P7 thread gave me a great deal of info for when it was time for me to make my purchases. I bought based on need rather than the first thing to come to mind.
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Old 03-12-09, 07:09 AM   #12
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Unknown Cyclist got me to thinking about mounting a light to a helmet. It really does need to be able to break away from the helmet in an accident. This is something I would not have thought of.
The ones I'm experimenting with are low profile so it isn't as essential that they are breakaway - however they actually are breakaway (MKI & MKII) because they are fixed to the clip on visor.

Personally, I'd go for a Q5 or R2 as a helmet light as the P7 is good but a bit bulky and thirsty.

A good Q5 torch puts out a nice tight spot which is more useful. There are no problems whatsoever with shadowing because of the amount of light already present.

I'm not saying that I won't build a custom P7 helmet light (because I will) just that less light, but more focussed will give longer runtimes and less weight added to the helmet - and in my opinion better results.

Now..if I can just find some optics that make the P7 more of thrower....

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Old 03-12-09, 08:39 AM   #13
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The ones I'm experimenting with are low profile so it isn't as essential that they are breakaway - however they actually are breakaway (MKI & MKII) because they are fixed to the clip on visor.

Personally, I'd go for a Q5 or R2 as a helmet light as the P7 is good but a bit bulky and thirsty.

A good Q5 torch puts out a nice tight spot which is more useful. There are no problems whatsoever with shadowing because of the amount of light already present.

I'm not saying that I won't build a custom P7 helmet light (because I will) just that less light, but more focussed will give longer runtimes and less weight added to the helmet - and in my opinion better results.

Now..if I can just find some optics that make the P7 more of thrower....

OK...I need to ask. Where would I find Q5 or R2 lights? Would they be commonly available? I am not sure I want to wait for DX to respond. I would rather pick one up locally. What would I look for? TY I appreciate your knowledge and willingness to share.
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Old 03-12-09, 09:35 AM   #14
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OK...I need to ask. Where would I find Q5 or R2 lights? Would they be commonly available? I am not sure I want to wait for DX to respond. I would rather pick one up locally. What would I look for? TY I appreciate your knowledge and willingness to share.
I've bought Q5 torches and R2 LEDs (both are Cree) from DX.

I'm not sure what country you are in, so I may well not be the best person to advise on local shopping.

DX prices can't be beaten

Be patient and buy an Ultrafire WF606A Q5 from DX, it's a bit heavy for my tastes, but much lighter than an 18650 P7 and has a lot more throw than the P7 torches I've seen.

EDIT: depending on runtime required WF606A is 2 x AA, if you only want short runtimes there is a superb single AA ultrafire on DX that can also run on 14500 Lithium Ion batteries - very good light output. Yes, I've got a few torches....UltraFire C3 Cree 1xAA 1x14500 Flashlight these are crazy bright on the 14500 but get very warm and have shorter runtime, not so bright on 1 x AA nimh but much longer runtimes.

Let people know where you are and I'm sure you'll get advice on buying locally.

Last edited by Unknown Cyclist; 03-12-09 at 09:44 AM.
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Old 03-12-09, 10:00 AM   #15
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I think the 606A is in my future.

What about a mounting system? Unknown Cyclist brought up the issue of needing breakaway mounts in case of an accident. Will velcro work?
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Old 03-12-09, 10:37 AM   #16
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There are a lot of different velcro-like materials that we used on boats for ceiling tiles, etc. that had to be opened for maintenance but had to hold up to big seas. I am looking into it for my helmet.
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