Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

Electronics, Lighting, & Gadgets HRM, GPS, MP3, HID. Whether it's got an acronym or not, here's where you'll find discussions on all sorts of tools, toys and gadgets.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 09-20-10, 12:19 PM   #1
bbeasley 
Cat 5 field stuffer
Thread Starter
 
bbeasley's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Hammond, La
Bikes: Wabi Lightning RE, Wabi Classic
Posts: 1,420
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Rear light, flashing or not

In the US where flashing rear lights are legal, do you prefer flashing or steady for the rear tail light?

Thanks!
bbeasley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-10, 12:29 PM   #2
myrridin
Banned.
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Bikes:
Posts: 2,325
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
For me it depends upon the conditions, I use the rear light in flashing mode during daylight since it seems more noticeable; however, at night or in inclement weather I use it as a steady rear light since that is what the motorists are going to expect in a tail light.
myrridin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-10, 12:31 PM   #3
10 Wheels
Galveston County Texas
 
10 Wheels's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: In The Wind
Bikes: 2010 Expedition, 03 GTO
Posts: 29,644
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 220 Post(s)
Flashing front and rear.

PBSF w Dinotte Test Part Two
__________________
[SIZE=1][B]What I like about Texas[/B]
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PGukLuXzH1E

Set F1re To The Ra1n ( NY Night Rain Ride)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W7jfcWEkSrI
10 Wheels is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-10, 12:47 PM   #4
Sammyboy
The Legitimiser
 
Sammyboy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Southampton, UK
Bikes: Gazelle Trim Trophy, EG Bates Track Bike, HR Bates Cantiflex bike, Nigel Dean fixed gear conversion, Raleigh Royal, Falcon Westminster.
Posts: 4,847
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I like my Dinotte rear light, which combines a bright enough steady light to throw a big pool of red on the road with flashing still brighter to grab the attention.
Sammyboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-10, 01:06 PM   #5
Scrockern8r
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Southwest Washington
Bikes: '77 Traveller III '05 Rockhopper.
Posts: 337
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Prefer flashing.
While driving a vehicle, I've seen steady and flashing lights mounted on bikes. For bikes, I find flashing lights are easier to spot in general. I like having a steady and a flasher as best of both worlds.
Scrockern8r is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-10, 01:07 PM   #6
ItsJustMe
Seņior Member
 
ItsJustMe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Michigan
Bikes: Windsor Fens, Giant Seek 0 (2014, Alfine 8 + discs)
Posts: 13,028
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 36 Post(s)
I want flashing, but I prefer to have one steady as well. If I have to ride with only one light and that's the choice, I'll take flashing, but that's because I'll also have at least a reflector, and probably a lot more reflective material as well that has the "steady" covered.

The Dinotte covers both at once; between bright flashes it's back to steady lower brightness.
__________________
Work: the 8 hours that separates bike rides.
ItsJustMe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-10, 01:20 PM   #7
canonikon
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Bikes:
Posts: 57
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
i like to ride in the dark and like a ninja....like a tiger sneaking up quietly behind their preys...and dodging cars improves your skills
canonikon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-10, 02:08 PM   #8
colleen c
I am a caffine girl
 
colleen c's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Bay Area
Bikes: 2012 Stumpjumper FSR Comp...2010 Scott CR1 CF...2007 Novara FS Float2.0...2009 Specialized Hardrock Disc...2009 Schwinn Le Tour GSr
Posts: 1,815
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I prefer flashing with lots of random pattern. I find that the more random pattern there are, the better I get noticed. I just got done with trying out a MS tailight with two PBSF on either side of the MS. I personally thinks that a lot of cars will see me just the same if I am running a single MS tail light as I do if I was running the MS plus the two PBSF, however with the random extra flashing from the PBSF, they will actually slow down as they passed me to see the setup which is a good thing. Not only do I get seen, but I get enough attention for them to observe what I got. I did a video of the setup and I will post it after I do some editing. All I can say so far is that at 1/3 of a mile it is eye catching
colleen c is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-10, 02:15 PM   #9
mechBgon
Senior Member
 
mechBgon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Bikes:
Posts: 6,957
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by bbeasley View Post
In the US where flashing rear lights are legal, do you prefer flashing or steady for the rear tail light?

Thanks!
Flashing. Steady red lights blend in too easily in traffic:



There's a difference between being visible, and being noticed. Get noticed.
mechBgon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-10, 02:24 PM   #10
harshbarj
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Omaha, Ne
Bikes: Trek Belleville, Workcycles opa, Schwinn
Posts: 403
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I use steady on my front lights as they are mainly so I can see. My rear light I always use flashing mode, but not to get noticed. I use flashing on the rear light because I can get almost 3 months out of a set of AAA cells. Steady only nets me around a month or so. Here soon though I will have a new generator powered light and it will be steady (though it has to be as it's a German light).
harshbarj is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-10, 11:12 PM   #11
Ziemas
Senior Member
 
Ziemas's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Riga, Latvia
Bikes:
Posts: 10,082
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by mechBgon View Post
Flashing. Steady red lights blend in too easily in traffic:



There's a difference between being visible, and being noticed. Get noticed.
+1
Ziemas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-10, 01:07 AM   #12
fuji86
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Miami, FL
Bikes: 1986 Fuji Allegro 12 Spd; 1997 Fuji MX-200 21 Spd; 2010 Vilano SS/FG 46/16
Posts: 1,934
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The flashing mode gets longer battery life, but I always thought the modes might be better used to indicate a cycling condition. I figure constant on is a cyclist under normal riding conditions. Blinking might be a cyclist stopped at the side of the road, perhaps in distress like the flashers on a car when you have a flat tire or the car/bike is having mechanical problems. And the blinking chasing mode, that's more reserved for police on bikes, chasing somebody or perhaps a crime victim ? The chasing mode probably indicating that a dangerous condition with a criminal still in the area exists ? For the blinking modes, a motorist might stop and assist someone in whatever distress ? Constant on and the motorists need to yield right of way.
fuji86 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-10, 07:25 PM   #13
Bat56
Senior Member
 
Bat56's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: St.Paul, MN
Bikes:
Posts: 1,732
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Both. Blink to get their attention, and solid so that they can focus on me and figure out where I am.
Bat56 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-10, 08:20 PM   #14
drmweaver2
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Bikes:
Posts: 817
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
For rear lights, I use one flasher and one not. The non-flasher is on the left side, the flasher on the right.

---------
Heresy follows (if you don't like heresy... go to next post/thread).

Flashing front lights are basically UNSAFE for others whether coming towards you are travelling in your lane/direction. As others have noted, they may attract the eye better than "constant on" lights. However, in doing so, they may cause a temporary loss of acuity in the person looking to see what was flashing - depending on the distance to the light source, its strength, and the angle at which the light is looked at with respect to its beam pattern/strength. A rider's perception of safety or desire "to be seen" does not obviate a need to be concerned about others. This is why driving a car with high beams on is usually unlawful unless the distance between yourself and anyone in front of you is more than 500 feet.
End of heresy....
drmweaver2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-23-10, 11:08 PM   #15
trx1
Senior Member
 
trx1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Bikes:
Posts: 306
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Where i live, im safest riding on the sidewalk.
since all our factories closed, theres ALOT less traffic then b4.
overall win for cyclists(not many, but those who do r WAY SAFER nowadays)

Last edited by trx1; 09-24-10 at 09:03 AM.
trx1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-24-10, 05:51 PM   #16
Pluto
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Bikes: 2011 Cannondale Synapse 5 Jamis Durango 3
Posts: 71
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I ride early and use two red blinkies on the rear and solid white on the front in addition to a helmet mounted light. I also carry a Four Sevens back up light in case one of the front lights poops out.
Pluto is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-24-10, 06:53 PM   #17
ItsJustMe
Seņior Member
 
ItsJustMe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Michigan
Bikes: Windsor Fens, Giant Seek 0 (2014, Alfine 8 + discs)
Posts: 13,028
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 36 Post(s)
A couple of days ago I decided to run the Magicshine tail on steady with my auxiliary lights (superflashes) on blink. I run the Magicshine on blink during the day, but I decided that at night it's just like poking people in the eye to have it blinking, and having it on steady was better.

I've run it like that two days so far, and on both days I got multiple positive comments from drivers about my lights. I don't think I'd gotten more than 3 or 4 comments in the last 5 years, then I got 4 in two days after making the change.
__________________
Work: the 8 hours that separates bike rides.
ItsJustMe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-10, 04:29 AM   #18
Chris_F
World's slowest cyclist.
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Londonderry, NH
Bikes: Cannondale CAAD5 and Cannondale Rush
Posts: 1,353
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I use flashing but in my state (New Hampshire), a flashing red light is technically illegal. I think that's more of a technicality though.
Chris_F is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-10, 02:41 PM   #19
Phil85207
Century bound
 
Phil85207's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Mesa Arizona
Bikes: Felt AR4 and Cannondale hybrid
Posts: 2,253
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by canonikon View Post
i like to ride in the dark and like a ninja....like a tiger sneaking up quietly behind their preys...and dodging cars improves your skills
I hope you live long enough to get smarter.

Last edited by unterhausen; 09-25-10 at 08:42 PM. Reason: removing insults
Phil85207 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-10, 06:38 PM   #20
kinetic
Donde Esta Mi Pantalones?
 
kinetic's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 71
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil85207 View Post
I hope you live long enough to get smarter.
He's a troll. Just tell him "cool story bro"

Last edited by unterhausen; 09-25-10 at 08:41 PM.
kinetic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-10, 08:17 PM   #21
tatfiend 
Gear Hub fan
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Reno, NV
Bikes: Civia Hyland Rohloff, Swobo Dixon, Colnago, Univega
Posts: 2,830
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I like dynamo lights as primary lighting and no dynamo taillights are available that I know of with a blinking mode. I use a blinking battery taillight as an auxillary for added visibility.
__________________
Gear Hubs Owned: Rohloff disc brake, SRAM iM9 disc brake, SRAM P5 freewheel, Sachs Torpedo 3 speed freewheel, NuVinci CVT, Shimano Alfine SG S-501, Sturmey Archer S5-2 Alloy. Other: 83 Colnago Super Record, Univega Via De Oro

Visit and join the Yahoo Geared Hub Bikes group for support and links.
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Geared_hub_bikes/
tatfiend is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-27-10, 02:22 PM   #22
Brian Sharpe
Senior Member
 
Brian Sharpe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: 'burbs of Ottawa ON Canada
Bikes: Marin Larkspur / Giant Defy Alliance 1
Posts: 173
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by mechBgon View Post
Flashing. Steady red lights blend in too easily in traffic:

There's a difference between being visible, and being noticed. Get noticed.
+1

The blinking red light is far more likely to get a motorist's attention from a distance.
Brian Sharpe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-27-10, 06:00 PM   #23
Richard Cranium
Senior Member
 
Richard Cranium's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Deep in the Shawnee Forest
Bikes: LeMond - Gunnar
Posts: 2,829
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Unfortunately - there isn't an intelligent method of determining what mode of lighting to use.


Quote:
Lighting needs are dynamic.

There is no one "perfect" light for the many different situations cyclists encounter. The reality of "dumb as truck+F" American - is that we all play "catch up" to the mindless automobile/power bar -SUV / cell -phone - CD -shuffle craze" that represents what most motorists are tending to as the scurry from non-event to non-result.

I "geeked up" my hybrid with dual MS 900s - a flashing front Dinotte and a Fenix LD 20 to aim at driver's eyes, and mated that to two MS tail lights in flash mode with another front-facing Dinotte on "flash" that high lights my entire back side from a rear rack mount.

Now you would think - I would get noticed- and I do. Just the other night an ******* comes by at two feet - just to show "he's still boss" no matter how many lights I run.

SO - light up any way you can - they'll still aim at you - never assume you are safe.
Richard Cranium is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-10, 03:02 PM   #24
PaulRivers
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Bikes:
Posts: 5,474
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 18 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by drmweaver2 View Post
For rear lights, I use one flasher and one not. The non-flasher is on the left side, the flasher on the right.

---------
Heresy follows (if you don't like heresy... go to next post/thread).

Flashing front lights are basically UNSAFE for others whether coming towards you are travelling in your lane/direction. As others have noted, they may attract the eye better than "constant on" lights. However, in doing so, they may cause a temporary loss of acuity in the person looking to see what was flashing - depending on the distance to the light source, its strength, and the angle at which the light is looked at with respect to its beam pattern/strength. A rider's perception of safety or desire "to be seen" does not obviate a need to be concerned about others. This is why driving a car with high beams on is usually unlawful unless the distance between yourself and anyone in front of you is more than 500 feet.
End of heresy....
I agree with you about running the high(ish) powered front lights at night on flashing.

However, from experience driving in my area, this isn't true of those AA powered lights that last like 50 hours on a set of batteries - you know, the "to be seen kind". You know, the kind you get that cost $30 and don't put out enough light to bike by really, but the ambient city light is enough to bike by and you just want other people to see you. Those kind I like (as a driver) when they're blinking, they make bikes stand out, but they aren't anywhere near bright enough to be be annoying.

And of course for maximum visibility during the day a high power blinking front light is nice, but obviously that's a totally different situation than most people get lights for biking in.

Just to add something to agree with you (and I do agree with your point in general), I'm tempted to wear my really high powered bike lights on my helmet for those people who run bright, high powered blinking lights on our local MUP - damn it those things are obnoxious. I'm tempted to use the helmet light on the people who have those - "What? You're blinded and can't see? Well guess what - so am I, so I guess we're even." Jesus those things are annoying...
PaulRivers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-10, 03:09 PM   #25
curbtender
Senior Member
 
curbtender's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: SF Bay Area, East bay
Bikes: Marinoni, Kestral 200 2002 Trek 5200, KHS Flite, Koga Miyata, Schwinn Spitfire 5, Schwinn Speedster, Mondia Special, Univega Alpina
Posts: 3,872
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 18 Post(s)
Rear light should flash. It doesn't need to do anything but attract attention. But you have different flashers. Which one of those work best? Back and forth, plain bar on and off, or random?
curbtender is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 04:11 AM.