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Old 05-27-12, 05:59 AM   #1
jverweijen
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Bike Lights

He everybody, I need your help.
I'm am a student at the Technical University of Delft and I'm studying Industrial Design. I need to know a few things about bike lights and especially the requirements for them that people have in the States. In the end I have to come up with a new concept for a Dutch company that wants to introduce themselves in the USA. So can you help me by maybe answering a few of these questions:

What type of lights do you use? (detachable?) and why?

Where do you use them for? (to see or be seen?)

What do you expect in terms of lifetime?

What do you think is a good idea for bike lighting?

Maybe some other stuff that's on your mind?

Those are my questions and I would like to thank you in advance for helping me out!

Jur
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Old 05-27-12, 06:30 AM   #2
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I'm going to move this to a forum about lights. You will get more replies there.
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Old 05-27-12, 07:35 PM   #3
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A low mode. Many front lights have it but most rear lights don't. If you're riding at night in a pace line it's really annoying and possibly dangerous when the guy in front of you has his blindingly bright rear light aimed in your eyes. We require people to put their lights on non-blinking modes but some are still far too blinding especially if they got bumped, are aimed too high, or are clipped to a saddle bag. For the front light a low mode is important if you're behind a guy with a wimpy light. Try taking a pull with a wimpy light when the guy behind you has a 1000 lumen monster light. You can see to your right and left but everything directly in front of you is a dark shadow.
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Old 05-28-12, 02:20 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Grivooga View Post
If you're riding at night in a pace line it's really annoying and possibly dangerous when the guy in front of you has his blindingly bright rear light aimed in your eyes. We require people to put their lights on non-blinking modes but some are still far too blinding especially if they got bumped, are aimed too high, or are clipped to a saddle bag.
Yes, blinking mode is very annoyable to other riders in your column. But blinking mode is the best solution when you ride alone in heavy traffic. It's very noticable for motorists. I always use it when I go home from a ride at midnight.

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Originally Posted by jverweijen
What type of lights do you use? (detachable?) and why?
I use both of them. Fixed light under saddle is partially shielded by plastic luggage box on my rack. The detatchable light I attach to my backpack. But in common it's better to have two or many rear lights. The more of them you have, the more noticable you are to motorists.
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Old 05-28-12, 02:32 AM   #5
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Fairly bright for urban riding, $60-$100, USB rechargeable bike specific headlights and tail lights are now readily available. They don't look too bad, and are fairly easy to use.

A kickstarter proposal, the bike helmet design having front and back lights integrated into its shell, looks interesting, though the shell doesn't appear to have enough ventilation. I'm hearing a lot from family about how helmet mounted lights help people riding to be seen, but I've so far resisted the clunky flashlight strapped to the top of the helmet route.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/...ights?ref=live
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Old 05-28-12, 06:23 AM   #6
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Lazer makes helmets with integrated lights.

I don't ride in pace lines so I use powerful lights. Epsecially for commuting. I have two Magic Shines in front and two PBSFs in the back. I also have a cheap blinkie in the front so I can turn the MS lights off in bike lanes as not to blind oncoming cyclists, but I ride in the city so there is enough light in bike lanes. Even if I ride with a club we're spread far apart and hardly ride in darkness so I still use PBSF in the back and some average blinkie in the front.
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Old 05-28-12, 06:00 PM   #7
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What type of lights do you use? (detachable?) and why?
- Detachable is good for theft security and for swapping between bikes (why own two lights when you can just buy a spare mount?)

Where do you use them for? (to see or be seen?)
- Both, depending on the situation. Multiple modes help with this - flash or solid.
- Newer more powerful models (compact too) are making this easier.
- Tail lights need a bit of side on visibility

What do you expect in terms of lifetime?
- Depends on the initial cost outlay. Top end lights I'd expect many years (3-4+) from the light itself and maybe 2-3 from the battery if rechargeable.

Maybe some other stuff that's on your mind?
- I'm moving to rechargeable lights (USB - convenient, less waste)
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Old 05-28-12, 06:38 PM   #8
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You should really use one of the free survey type of sites, and then point us all to it, you would get way better response. If I want to reply now its a PITA to scroll back and remember everything you're asking. Just sayin'.
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Old 05-29-12, 03:38 AM   #9
jverweijen
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Thank you all for so far, keep the replies coming. Everyone of them was very helpful. I had some questions and remarks on some of the replies. Everyone is free to participate in the discussion

@Grivooga:
This is actually really helpful. I already thought of this in a way, but now I have some back up on this problem. Do you think a sort of dynamic system with sensors that determine if you are in a well lit area or not could be an idea?
@wsbob:
This is a good idea. But don't you think, after seeing the video, that he is still not very visible. Only his head is noticeable, I could imagine that it is a bit confusing for the other traffic.
@Scrabbler:
Thanks, I know, but now I can keep the conversation going a bit and reply on good input.

Last edited by jverweijen; 05-29-12 at 03:56 AM.
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Old 05-30-12, 02:45 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jverweijen View Post
Thank you all for so far, keep the replies coming. Everyone of them was very helpful. I had some questions and remarks on some of the replies. Everyone is free to participate in the discussion

@Grivooga:
This is actually really helpful. I already thought of this in a way, but now I have some back up on this problem. Do you think a sort of dynamic system with sensors that determine if you are in a well lit area or not could be an idea?
@wsbob:
This is a good idea. But don't you think, after seeing the video, that he is still not very visible. Only his head is noticeable, I could imagine that it is a bit confusing for the other traffic.
@Scrabbler:
Thanks, I know, but now I can keep the conversation going a bit and reply on good input.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jverweijen View Post
@wsbob:
This is a good idea. But don't you think, after seeing the video, that he is still not very visible. Only his head is noticeable, I could imagine that it is a bit confusing for the other traffic.
jverweijen...good point...it's important to evaluate how visible the lights on the helmet allow the wearer to be to other road users. Can't easily view the video...dial-up. The specs say the lights have 50 lumens, but that illumination level is spread over a substantially wider display area than a typical bike headlight or tail light today tends to have...so it logically figures that the helmet's lights will be less bright than some of the popular tail lights with 50 lumens. Side by side comparison would be an easy way to get a sense of the helmet lighting's relative brightness.
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Old 05-30-12, 07:30 PM   #11
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[h=1]NiteRider MiNewt.350 Cordless Bike Light detacable to prevent theft.[/h]Seeing and being seen.
Years I hope
safety, gets the attention of drivers
I love the Netherlands -- tot ziens.
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