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  1. #1
    Member sfleuriet's Avatar
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    Good self-contained LEDs front and rear

    I'm currently using cheapo button cell LEDs on my road bike. I'm looking at getting better lighting so I can feel more comfortable riding at night. I want a good headlight for handlebar mounting, and rear seat post mount light that has the ability to flash in some manner while maintaining a solid red beam.

    I want the lights to have internal batteries - no wires or battery packs.

    I can't see myself spending over $100 altogether, front and rear. I did see mention of the DiNotte 300R on another thread - looks great, but a bit too expensive for me.

    What do you recommend?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Spld cyclist's Avatar
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    I'm really happy with the Serfas True 500 headlight I got a few months back. I paid $89 on Amazon. I think that spending around $100 to get 450 - 500 lumens is definitely worth it. I'm happy I didn't get a lesser powered light. You can get a pretty nice tail light for $30 - 40, so think about stretching the budget a little if you can.

    I looked carefully at the cost of getting extra mounts (for multiple bikes) and batteries. Serfas was pretty reasonable for both of these.

  3. #3
    Member sfleuriet's Avatar
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    Thanks - after looking at the Serfas True 500 for a few minutes, I really like that one.

  4. #4
    aka Tom Reingold noglider's Avatar
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    I've bought so many lighting systems I can't count them all. Each time I realized I hadn't spent enough, because it was inadequate. I could save you a lot of money by telling you to set a budget of $200. Then you'll have a system you'll continue to use and which won't fail you.

    My current system is a Sanyo dynamo hub, a Philips 60 Lux headlight, and a B&M taillight. The drag is so negligible that I leave it on in the day time. I feel comfortable on dark roads at up to 25 mph. When I hit approximately that speed, I hit the brakes, but who can complain about that kind of limit?

    I don't have to charge anything or worry about it out on a ride. My lights don't start dimming after a few miles. No more worries.
    You don't read my signature anyway, do you?

    Tom Reingold, noglider@pobox.com
    Residences: West Village, New York City and High Falls, NY
    Blogs: The Experienced Cyclist; noglider's ride blog

  5. #5
    Member sfleuriet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spld cyclist View Post
    I'm really happy with the Serfas True 500 headlight I got a few months back. I paid $89 on Amazon. I think that spending around $100 to get 450 - 500 lumens is definitely worth it. I'm happy I didn't get a lesser powered light. You can get a pretty nice tail light for $30 - 40, so think about stretching the budget a little if you can.

    I looked carefully at the cost of getting extra mounts (for multiple bikes) and batteries. Serfas was pretty reasonable for both of these.
    What tail lights did you have in mind that would pair well with the Serfas 500? I tend to think the rear of the bike should be more visible to drivers than the front, while riding with the flow of traffic.

    I ordered a Serfas True 500+, now I just need to pick a tail light.
    Last edited by sfleuriet; 05-09-13 at 09:40 PM.

  6. #6
    Seņior Member ItsJustMe's Avatar
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    I really like the Knog Blinder 4V for seat post mounting. It has its problems - it mounts on a seat post and that's all. It has a rubber mounting that may not last, I don't know. But it's very bright, and most importantly the beam pattern is very uniform over almost a complete 180 degree spread. Also it's not too expensive, at about $35.

    My favorite tail light right now is the Serfas Shield, but at $60 it sounds a bit over your budget.

    The Cygolite Hotshot is also really good and is $35, but the beam is more of a spotlight than a flood. I just personally feel a little more comfortable with the Knog on my tail than the Hotshot. Personal preference. The Hotshot has better mounting than the Knog. Still, the Knog's mount is really kind of neat, and if the seatpost is where you want to put it, it's fine.

    Even the PBSF would be a step up from the little button cell things.

    Here's a comparison video I shot a while back with the Hotshot, Blinder 4V, Serfas Shield, PBSF and the MagicShine (which is not really in the running for your needs).

    http://youtu.be/12xDjS-ot8w

    From the video you can see that the Serfas is a hell of a light. The Hotshot is also strong but fades a lot to the side. The Knog is overpowered by the others from directly behind but in real life it's still plenty bright (44 lumens) and is exactly as bright all the way around the sides.
    Work: the 8 hours that separates bike rides.

  7. #7
    Member sfleuriet's Avatar
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    I went back and forth trying to decide between the Serfas Shield and Thunderbolt. By all accounts, the Shield is BRIGHT. But I liked the more compact size of the Thunderbolt (and rechargeable built-in Lion), and went with it. I did go over my $100 budget a bit, but that's fine - I'm considering this a priceless safety-related purchase! Serfas 500+ & Thunderbolt combo should be a good setup. Thanks for the suggestions

  8. #8
    Seņior Member ItsJustMe's Avatar
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    The Serfas Thunderbolt looks very similar to the Knog Blinder, just not quite as bright. Same limitations on mounting.
    Work: the 8 hours that separates bike rides.

  9. #9
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    I recently got a led tail light with 2 downward laser lines for 6 bucks off the bay.
    Just search for "bike laser" and it will come up.
    The thing is supposed to be rain resistant and you can flash the leds and/or lasers.
    The laser lines look very cool and they are so different I think lots of cars would notice you riding.
    The battery door is a bit flimsy but tape would cure it.
    Not sure how long it will last, but it's only $6.

  10. #10
    Member sfleuriet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ttakata73 View Post
    I recently got a led tail light with 2 downward laser lines for 6 bucks off the bay.
    Just search for "bike laser" and it will come up.
    The thing is supposed to be rain resistant and you can flash the leds and/or lasers.
    The laser lines look very cool and they are so different I think lots of cars would notice you riding.
    The battery door is a bit flimsy but tape would cure it.
    Not sure how long it will last, but it's only $6.
    Well those are just the type of lights I'm trying to upgrade from. They are just simply not bright enough to make me feel safe in the dark.

    I got the Serfas Thunderbolt in today.. WOW it's bright. Looking forward to a night ride once the headlight comes in.

    Apparently the Serfas Shield is even brighter than the Thunderbolt - I can't imagine how bright that would be.

  11. #11
    Seņior Member ItsJustMe's Avatar
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    The Thunderbolt is about 35 lumens. the Knog Blinder is very similarly shaped and sized but has some other modes since it's 4 LEDs instead of just one strip. It's 44 lumens. The Shield is 60 lumens, so about twice as bright as the Thunderbolt. I think it's at least mostly daylight visible in high mode. At night you could drop it down a notch.
    Work: the 8 hours that separates bike rides.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by sfleuriet View Post
    I'm currently using cheapo button cell LEDs on my road bike. I'm looking at getting better lighting so I can feel more comfortable riding at night. I want a good headlight for handlebar mounting, and rear seat post mount light that has the ability to flash in some manner while maintaining a solid red beam.

    I want the lights to have internal batteries - no wires or battery packs.

    I can't see myself spending over $100 altogether, front and rear. I did see mention of the DiNotte 300R on another thread - looks great, but a bit too expensive for me.

    What do you recommend?
    Light and Motion Taz800 or Taz1200. Really awesome self contained lights.

    For tail lights, if you want the best and brightest, then Dinotte 300R. I almost think that the taillight is more important than the headlight.

    j.

  13. #13
    Member sfleuriet's Avatar
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    Here's a good price on the Serfas Shield if anyone needs to pick one up..

    http://www.treefortbikes.com/product...-USL-TL60.html

  14. #14
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    Night rider

    Quote Originally Posted by sfleuriet View Post
    I'm currently using cheapo button cell LEDs on my road bike. I'm looking at getting better lighting so I can feel more comfortable riding at night. I want a good headlight for handlebar mounting, and rear seat post mount light that has the ability to flash in some manner while maintaining a solid red beam.



    I want the lights to have internal batteries - no wires or battery packs.

    I can't see myself spending over $100 altogether, front and rear. I did see mention of the DiNotte 300R on another thread - looks great, but a bit too expensive for me.

    What do you recommend?
    To ride at night on the road you need good blinking tail light as you say. Sorry but for me its hard to say which brand to buy cause i rare use lights from the store.
    For front light i suggest if it is possible to have a separated light modul from batteries and switch which is ergonomically attached on handlebar . All in one front light is source with many restrictions, but look how much money so much light. Its not always like that how much money so much light.
    If you understand some basic electronic values, have some tools, materials available and you have vision and time, you can make something valuable and useful to your self.I made something which im using for arround 1,5 year and im very satisfied. I would like to share part of it with you, so maybe design can help for your projects..

    P3270013.jpg09989.jpg

    IMG_1479.jpgDSC01239.jpgP1010029.jpg
    P4150011.jpg
    P4150024.jpgP10100319888.jpg
    Last edited by hermes07; 05-21-13 at 06:30 PM. Reason: mistake

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