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Old 09-18-09, 11:37 AM   #1
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Anyone using an SRAM i-light dynamo?

I am starting to do more night riding and really enjoy it except for my battery lights. Looking at other battery lights made me start wondering about dynamo's (cost and everything). The SRAM i-light D7 looks good to me because it has cartridge bearings and has the same or better efficiency as the Schmidt SON, but the reviews I found also said the resistance without the light was the same as with it on but these were from 2004/2005 or so. Any one have a newer D7 and can comment on it? This is going on my Rando/road bike not a commuter. Any long term problems with the hub that anyone has found? Condensation during cold weather? I will be using it rain or shine.

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Old 09-19-09, 11:29 AM   #2
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Been using mine for about a year now problem free. It is on my winter/rain commuter so wet/cold weather performance is fine. It doesn't have that much resistance, but it is my first dyno hub so I have no real point of reference.
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Old 09-21-09, 10:38 AM   #3
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I can't help with your question, yet. I just ordered the i-light D7 from ebikestop. Hope to build the wheel this weekend. I'll be using the LightOn! DynoLight (http://lightonlights.com/dynolight/). I'll post results, and look forward to comparing notes!
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Old 09-21-09, 01:39 PM   #4
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I was looking at this too, but I dont know how to proceed if I did want one. What do you do, just take the wheel you already have in front apart and put this in the center, and then wire it up? Or can you buy a wheel with it already in there?
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Old 09-22-09, 07:05 AM   #5
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I was looking at this too, but I dont know how to proceed if I did want one. What do you do, just take the wheel you already have in front apart and put this in the center, and then wire it up? Or can you buy a wheel with it already in there?
I personally wouldn't tear a wheel apart just to put in a dyno hub. I would build a second wheel, but it all depends on your budget and bike use. (I have seen complete wheels with this hub we are talking about for around $180, then you would still need the light(s)) There are many different lights you can buy also, some work good with just the front light, some require a taillight also so they don't burn up, some may require a bulb change. The best thing to do would be to determine what your use is going to be, where you want the light to go, and how much you want to spend. There are some sites that compare different light beams to help you determine what light you want. If I find my links I'll post them again but they are here in this forum.
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Old 09-22-09, 07:19 AM   #6
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I can't help with your question, yet. I just ordered the i-light D7 from ebikestop. Hope to build the wheel this weekend. I'll be using the LightOn! DynoLight (http://lightonlights.com/dynolight/). I'll post results, and look forward to comparing notes!
I was thinking about using the inoled 10+ for right now. I would like a supernova e3 but didn't want to spend that kind of cash just yet. The lights on looks good, I like the mounting options it provides. What type of riding are you getting it for?
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Old 09-22-09, 09:24 AM   #7
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I can't help with your question, yet. I just ordered the i-light D7 from ebikestop. Hope to build the wheel this weekend. I'll be using the LightOn! DynoLight (http://lightonlights.com/dynolight/). I'll post results, and look forward to comparing notes!
Wow, love the axle mount.
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Old 09-22-09, 10:14 AM   #8
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^ Yeah, me too! I'm really curious to see how the axle mount holds up and lights up the way.

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I was thinking about using the inoled 10+ for right now. I would like a supernova e3 but didn't want to spend that kind of cash just yet. The lights on looks good, I like the mounting options it provides. What type of riding are you getting it for?
I was looking at the Schmidt Edelux, but decided on the DynoLight. USA built, and I do like the design. I couldn't find any reviews of it, so my order is bit of a leap of faith. We'll see; it's on its way. My lighting system is for commuting--6:00am is pretty dark now in central NC. My route takes me on some MUTs but mostly it's country roads. I have been using a NiteRider TrailRat/NightOwl set up for years, but I'm tired of lugging (and charging) batteries. Seems like the right time to give a dyno-powered lighting system a try!
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Old 09-28-09, 06:06 AM   #9
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SRAM i-Light with Lights On! DynoLight

I did a quick and dirty wheel build with the i-Light hub and installed the DynoLight over the weekend. My 6:00am ride into work this morning was brilliant, really. Much better than the ol' NiteRider system I had. I'm happy to be rid of the effin' battery-charging routine (and lugging that extra stuff).

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Old 09-28-09, 09:01 AM   #10
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I did a quick and dirty wheel build with the i-Light hub and installed the DynoLight over the weekend. My 6:00am ride into work this morning was brilliant, really. Much better than the ol' NiteRider system I had. I'm happy to be rid of the effin' battery-charging routine (and lugging that extra stuff).

Gah, that makes me so tempted to just order a prebuilt dyno/CR-18 hub from Velo-Orange, a Dyno Light and convert my Soho S over...
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Old 09-28-09, 11:30 AM   #11
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Gah, that makes me so tempted to just order a prebuilt dyno/CR-18 hub from Velo-Orange, a Dyno Light and convert my Soho S over...
Let's see if I can tempt you more: I really like the design of the DynoLight. It's solidly sturdy build is impressive. "Waterproof" says the minimalist (but clear) user manual. The light was delivered with everything needed to install with no fuss. I like the option of the axle mount. I found that having it mounted that low is fine for pavement (it really lit up those pieces of debris that my previous system just washed over), but on the trail (a multi-surface MUT), dips and rises came up sudden--i.e. for serious off-road use, if I don't know the trail, I would mount the light higher.

The Velo-Orange prebuilt wheel looks like a good deal.

Disclaimer, I just started using the DynoLight today. I have never used a dyno system before or any lighting system much above ~100 lumens, so I am not a good person to give comparative data.

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Old 09-28-09, 01:16 PM   #12
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f1xedgear,

What are you using for a rear light, anything in particular?
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Old 09-28-09, 05:52 PM   #13
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f1xedgear,

What are you using for a rear light, anything in particular?
Nope, nothin' particular. It's a Vistalite circ. 2000 (or thereabouts), two AAs. Then I put a couple more cheap blinkies on my backpack. That does the trick for me.
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Old 09-29-09, 06:47 AM   #14
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Nope, nothin' particular. It's a Vistalite circ. 2000 (or thereabouts), two AAs. Then I put a couple more cheap blinkies on my backpack. That does the trick for me.
I was curious about the Lighton's ability to power a rear LED... I'll probably contact them soon.
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Old 09-29-09, 09:35 AM   #15
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I was curious about the Lighton's ability to power a rear LED... I'll probably contact them soon.
Ah, okay. I think that's more of a question re the dynamo; my understanding is that if I wanted to run a wire to a rear light, that's not a problem. But I'm sure the Lights On! folks can say for sure.
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Old 09-29-09, 12:23 PM   #16
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I bit the bullet and ordered the hub. I am waiting on it and my rear hub, then I will measure and get my spokes ordered and start building my wheels. I am still wavering on the light however. I have it narrowed between the lighton, the B&M lumotec IQ Cyo and the supernova e3. Right now the supernova is winning out because I can order a single light now @ 200 (the same as the lighton) but they have the option to upgrade it to the e3 triple light on there website for around $90 to $100 later on. I really want the e3 triple but am not willing to spend that amount just yet. I like the B&M Cyo's price and light but they don't offer the upgrade path that the e3 has.

I wonder if the lighton will be upgradeable in the future because I really do like the mounting options and it looks like a sturdy light. How do you like the beam pattern? Does it light up the road signs good enough to see them?
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Old 09-30-09, 06:23 AM   #17
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I bit the bullet and ordered the hub. I am waiting on it and my rear hub, then I will measure and get my spokes ordered and start building my wheels.
I am impressed with the i-Light hub. It seems both good quality and value. I can't say for sure that I can tell any difference regarding drag--feels the same as before to me.

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I am still wavering on the light however. I have it narrowed between the lighton, the B&M lumotec IQ Cyo and the supernova e3. Right now the supernova is winning out because I can order a single light now @ 200 (the same as the lighton) but they have the option to upgrade it to the e3 triple light on there website for around $90 to $100 later on. I really want the e3 triple but am not willing to spend that amount just yet. I like the B&M Cyo's price and light but they don't offer the upgrade path that the e3 has.

I wonder if the lighton will be upgradeable in the future because I really do like the mounting options and it looks like a sturdy light. How do you like the beam pattern? Does it light up the road signs good enough to see them?
Sounds like you're giving your lighting choice pretty careful thought, and maybe the Supernova is right for you. I do like the DynoLight's design. Compact, sturdy, Made in USA. The beam pattern works fine for me--no probs re lighting up road signs or other reflective road safety stuff that I've come across in the past several days. The beam pattern is (not unexpectedly) tighter than what I had with a 10w halogen; it's also whiter, which is something I'm fast getting used to. With the low mounting, however, there is a significant shadow cast off to the left (way left) by the front of the wheel rim--seemed odd at first, but I'm used to it now.

One of the things I find exceptionally cool about the whole dyno system is that I can just leave it on all the time. A co-worker passed me on his way home Monday afternoon (a sunny day). He said that he was surprised and impressed that he could clearly see my light in his rear-view mirrors for a long time after he passed me, in spite of a line of traffic separating us. He said the light was immediately eye catching. I have no regrets; I'm happy and very pleased with both the i-Light hub and DynoLight LED.
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Old 09-30-09, 06:39 AM   #18
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They say it has a hi/low/off -switch. I take it the switch is in the handlebars even when the light is mounted by the axle? And beam shape: their home page shows the light mounted with the two LEDs vertical at axle, or horizontal at handlebar. That makes me think the beam must be conical, not shaped at all? (well, technically conical is a shape too... )

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Old 09-30-09, 07:05 AM   #19
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^^
Well, based on my experience with this light, I'd guess that the beam pattern example shown on their web site is from a handle-bar mounting. The low/off/high toggle is located on the side/top (based on orientation) of the light itself.
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Old 09-30-09, 07:20 AM   #20
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Holy Snap! Check out the response I got from LightOn when I asked about compatibility of rear Dyno Light...

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Joshua,
Light On! has a tail light that is scheduled to start selling on October 15th. I’ll make sure to send you notice when that time comes around.
It is super bright and visible from the side when moving or stopped. It mounts to your seat post but will adapt to rack mount or fender mounting.
Thanks you for your interest,
Brian Engelen
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Old 09-30-09, 08:09 AM   #21
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Holy Snap! Check out the response I got from LightOn when I asked about compatibility of rear Dyno Light...
Ooo, cool! Post up when you get the good word. I might have to give up my liking of the-fewer-the-wires-the-better in favor of this option. Sounds just right.
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Old 10-05-09, 07:56 PM   #22
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f1xedgear, can you tell me how your sram hub felt out of the box? Feels like mine needs the bearings loosened. I can barely turn it. Is that how yours felt? That seems like a lot of resistance. I know it will get better after it has a rim and tire on it but still....
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Old 10-06-09, 06:08 AM   #23
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^^
canopus, yep, mine is the same. I wondered and was concerned, too, about the lack of spin (compared to all other hubs I am familiar with--it *does* feel like the bearings are cinched in there pretty darn tight) but assumed that it was the internal gearing (duh, it's the magnets). This being my first go with a dynohub. I am happy to report that once you get the wheel built, the spin returns--somewhat. Really, I can't tell that there's any more resistance now when I'm riding with the new wheel. But up on the stand when I spin the wheel and turn the DynoLight on and off, there is a difference. A racing wheel it is not! hehe.

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Old 10-06-09, 07:12 PM   #24
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The LightOn! Dynolight looks extremely interesting to me. The claimed light output is at least 4x that of any of the German street legal dynamo headlights I am aware of. I would like to see a direct photo comparison with the Lumotec IQ Cyo I am currently running. The German Lumotec dynamo lights do have the advantage of well engineered beam shape that makes them more effective for a given Lumens output than most sold in America battery powered LED headlights I have looked at or tried.
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Old 10-08-09, 01:25 PM   #25
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A Dynamo huib will feel "notchy" and a bit draggy even with perfectly adjusted wheel bearings due to the permanent magnets used in the dynamo portion of the hub. Peter White Cycles has a discussion of this in regards to the German SON hub on their web site with a warning to NOT try to mess with the bearing adjustment on it as they are non adjustable sealed cartridge bearings. Trying to do so can break the wires to the electrical connector on the hub.
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