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-   -   Best rear taillight available on Amazon for $20 or less? Looking for opinions (http://www.bikeforums.net/electronics-lighting-gadgets/937026-best-rear-taillight-available-amazon-20-less-looking-opinions.html)

fietsbob 03-14-14 12:32 PM

more productive, perhaps list all the taillights, known, under $20

and run a primary election or play off, to reduce it down to an either/or vote-contest.

very March-Madness like for college basketball fans.

dougmc 03-14-14 03:49 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Don in Austin (Post 16577649)
This looks Ok, but these days I would not get a light that was not USB rechargeable.

The PBSF clones last about 100 hours on 2xAAA alkalines, and AA's have about 3x as much energy as a AA, so at some point being rechargeable isn't that big of a deal.

That said, it looks like his light actually uses AAAs rather than the AAs he said. Looks like it claims "30+ hours of runtime(Constant)/100+ hours of runtime(Flashing)", so that's about what I'd expect.

Unless you ride for hours each night, that'll last a long time, especially if you favor flashing mode. If I did ride for hours each night, I'd just go with Eneloop or equivalent LSD NiMH cells -- no batteries to throw away, but you can still keep some spares in your bag (which you can't do with a light that's USB rechargeable, unless you keep a spare light.)

Personally, I use two PBSF clones ($5 each from DX, not sure if Amazon has an equivalent) on my bike that I ride the most, with Eneloops in them, but with one more charged than the other so they both don't go out at the same time. And then I keep two AAA alkalines in my tool bag, but so far I've never needed them for myself -- but I've given them away to other riders several times.

Don in Austin 03-14-14 07:17 PM

I use taillights that are a lot brighter than anything that runs on AAA batteries. Bring the bike in, plug everything in to charge. Plug in the NiteRider headlight and the talight on my helmet. its overkill to plug them in whenever bring the bike indoors because they go a long time on flash mode. i know what you mean about other riders -- I see lots of taillights so dim you can't seem them more than five feet away.

veganbikes 03-14-14 08:06 PM

If I had to go with a disposable battery op. light, I would go with the Niterider Cherrybomb (they make decent lights for sure). Though honestly I would save your money and go with the Light and Motion Vis 180 or the micro version of that light.

The Vis 180s are super bright, USB rechargeable and don't die out on you like a battery op light will, it goes to its lowest setting for a spell before it actually dies allowing you to get home and charge it up. Plus it gives you 180˚ of visibility so you can be seen plus 50 lumens for the regular and 25 for the micro. Plus their lights are built in the U.S. and designed to look really nice and preform really well.

One other useful note on them is their customer service is excellent, I needed to simply replace a button that fell off of my Vis 180 Micro and instead of a button they were kind enough to send a brand new light so I have two in my arsenal one for all weather and another for backups when it isn't wet.

Spld cyclist 03-14-14 08:28 PM

The Radbot 1000 is now down to $21.30 on Amazon. Although I'm not sure the OP is still paying attention - no check-backs since the first post....

ItsJustMe 03-14-14 09:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dougmc (Post 16578304)
The PBSF clones last about 100 hours on 2xAAA alkalines, and AA's have about 3x as much energy as a AA, so at some point being rechargeable isn't that big of a deal.

Runtime is directly related to brightness. If a light lasts a long time on tiny batteries, it's probably not that bright. I have three PBSFs from years ago but I no longer use them. They're just not up to current standards. As someone who rides daily on 2 lane roads with no shoulders, in the dark with half awake drivers doing 60+ MPH in the middle of nowhere, sometimes around blind corners, I want something really damned bright.

Looigi 03-15-14 08:12 AM

IMO, in dim conditions or at night PBSF and similar are way more than bright enough. It's during the day that they are marginal. And, FWIW, PBSF are way brighter than what 95% of cyclists around here use.

wphamilton 03-15-14 08:31 AM

Has anyone mentioned yet that you could get a MS clone and put a red lens filter on it for about $20? I think it would be much brighter than the more expensive dedicated tail lights, even at the lowest setting.

JacobKinsella 03-16-14 05:32 PM

I use a set of Giant numen mini lights, they're amazing for their price! Very bright and simple with either steady or blinky.

Giant Numen Mini Light Combo (Lights / Bells) - Bike Gear | Giant bikes UK & Ireland official website | UK / Ireland

noglider 03-16-14 08:42 PM

Looigi, around where?

wphamilton, would it be visible from the sides?

ItsJustMe 03-17-14 10:26 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by wphamilton (Post 16579752)
Has anyone mentioned yet that you could get a MS clone and put a red lens filter on it for about $20? I think it would be much brighter than the more expensive dedicated tail lights, even at the lowest setting.

You can also just buy the MagicShine taillight. It costs $30 an runs on the same battery as the MagicShine. It's by far the most red lumens you can buy for the money and it's more efficient since it uses a red LED. Putting a red lens on the front of a light throws away about 75% of the light it's generating. Mine is the basis of my rear lighting strategy, I run it on constant at night and add a flasher, either a Cygolite Hotshot or similar brightness like the Knog Blinder 4V, Serfas Shield or some such.

steve66 03-17-14 10:45 AM

I'm using the "Knog Blinder 1" front and rear lights and love them. They weigh almost nothing, recharge via integrated USB, have selectable blink patterns, are waterproof, and are really bright. I get about last about 2 hours on solid mode and over 10 hours on blink mode. I got them at REI, but they're about $20 each on Amazon.

shoemakerpom 03-17-14 12:12 PM

Stop looking and get this. Its the brightest light under 100 that you can find. Its so bright I had somebody pull up beside me when I was going about 20 in fog so thick you could only see about 30 in front of me and ask me where I got the light from. She told me she could see me for 2 miles back and that her husband wanted one for his commuting. The whole thing at first freaked me out but then it felt great that it was working the way I had intended.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

ItsJustMe 03-18-14 09:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by shoemakerpom (Post 16585640)
Stop looking and get this. Its the brightest light under 100 that you can find.

The Serfas Sheild is quite good, but there are a few caveats. The first one I got leaked and was full of water after the first ride in a light rain. They replaced it for free. I eventually lost it because the clip that they provide to go over straps is completely useless, it has NO retention ability at all. You hit a bump, it flies off. Mine flew off 3 times, the 3rd time I didn't hear it so it was lost. So if you get one and use that clip, also use a zip tie or a rubber band or something to further secure it.

Also, since you said "brightest for < $100" - well, Serfas themselves makes one for $80 that is basically TWO of those in one light, so clearly not true.

Amazon.com: Serfas 80 Lumen USB Taillight: Sports & Outdoors

Also, the MagicShine at $30 (no battery, it uses the headlight battery) uses the same emitter so it's as bright.

Also, the serfas definitely does not fit in the "under $20" range. I assume that if someone says that, they're not being arbitrary, they simply can't afford a lot more. I don't feel too bad suggesting a $25 light in this category if it's WAY better than the sub $20, but suggesting a light that's 2.5x more than the max the OP was talking about is a bit out there.

shoemakerpom 03-18-14 09:39 AM

Only a suggestion since I have been down this road myself. You start out going with a low cost light and find out after time it isn't as bright as you thought or your replacing batteries all the time. I have had mine a while in Florida downpours and it never once leaked or stopped working and I commute year round. The clip does suck but they give you a seat mount clip if you want to use that. I use it on my rear rack. The magicshine looks cool if you already have the front light to utilize the battery. Again just adding my own experience and the brighter=safer for everybody.:thumb:

Looigi 03-18-14 12:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by noglider (Post 16583874)
Looigi, around where?...

US of A, having ridden in ~12 states on both coasts and Rockies over the past few years. The large majority of riders have pathetically dim lights directed at odd angles.

01 CAt Man Do 03-18-14 01:47 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Looigi (Post 16589283)
US of A, having ridden in ~12 states on both coasts and Rockies over the past few years. The large majority of riders have pathetically dim lights directed at odd angles.

:lol: Ain't it the truth. Not that I drive all over the USA but I pretty much cover a large area of the east coast. It never ceases to amaze me how dim or poorly aimed a majority of people I see have their rear light. You would think with all the nice new 1-2 watt rear lights being sold that MORE people would actually be using them and actually take the time to aim them right. I try not to let it bother me as I know I'm a total "light" geek but still, you would think the peeps would at least put some fresh batteries in once in a while and care to aim the dang thing. :rolleyes:

Occasionally I'll pass a commuter dude who has the "visibility gene" going on. I find it's so rare I almost feel compelled to chase him down to "high five" him.

ItsJustMe 03-19-14 06:10 AM

Most people just buy the cheapest light they find at the LBS, or they just by some hunk of junk at a department store.

On the Serfas, it is odd that they give you what is probably the BEST seat post/tube mount I've ever seen, really quite excellent, and absolutely the worst hunk of garbage, "makes you lose the light at the first bump" strap mount in the same package.

fietsbob 03-19-14 04:18 PM

more productive, perhaps list all the taillights under $20

and run a primary election or play off to reduce it down to an either/or vote-contest.

taillight brackets , very March-Madness like for college basketball fans.

01 CAt Man Do 03-20-14 05:38 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dougmc (Post 16578304)
....Personally, I use two PBSF clones ($5 each from DX, not sure if Amazon has an equivalent) on my bike that I ride the most, with Eneloops in them, but with one more charged than the other so they both don't go out at the same time. And then I keep two AAA alkalines in my tool bag, but so far I've never needed them for myself -- but I've given them away to other riders several times.

Once a year I make it a practice to buy a couple cheap rear lights that I can carry with me to give away when I see someone riding without any lights ( or even reflectors...yeah, it happens )

Last night I was wishing I had one with me as I was driving along a rather dark parkway when I encountered a guy riding a MTB along the very narrow ( almost non-existent ) shoulder of the road. I was going around a slight curve ( coming off a ramp ) and the presence of a bicyclist took me by complete surprise. The only thing that saved me from doing a really close fly-by was that the bike he had DID HAVE reflector pedals. If he hadn't had those pedals I don't know that I would have seen him. Yep, if I'd-a had a spare blinkie with me I'd of flagged him down after I passed him and given him the light. I still can't believe he was riding on that particular road at that time of night without any lights or a decent reflector set-up. The guy was just asking for someone to run him down.

The little "frog type" lights make good give-a-ways and can attach to a seat post in seconds. Looks like it's time for me to order a couple more.

dougmc 03-20-14 09:32 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 01 CAt Man Do (Post 16594506)
The little "frog type" lights make good give-a-ways and can attach to a seat post in seconds.

True, but they're crap. They put out a tiny bit of light, and cr2032 batteries are expensive, hold little energy (leading to short runtimes and/or low light) and non-rechargeable.

I've carried a few extra PBSF clones with me -- they come fully ready to go even with batteries for $4-$5 -- and given them away, though that is expensive enough that I've usually just given them away to people I know.

And really, if I'm only giving somebody one light ... a headlight is probably more important than a tail light anyways, especially if their bike has some reflectors on it already. I haven't gone so far as to carry spare headlights with me with the intent of giving them away yet, though I have loaned friends my spare lights (I've always got at least two headlights on my bike when I'm riding at night.)

noglider 03-20-14 09:50 AM

You're a mensch, Cat Man.

ItsJustMe 03-20-14 11:50 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fietsbob (Post 16593366)
more productive, perhaps list all the taillights under $20

There are probably hundreds. Just DealExtreme has 30 or 40 of them.

fietsbob 03-20-14 11:52 AM

best and cheap is a futile hamster wheel of Opinions .

mrbubbles 03-20-14 12:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fietsbob (Post 16595597)
best and cheap is a futile hamster wheel of Opinions .

Everybody has to buy expensive stuff made in land of europa and usa, right?

I've been running the same red cree flashlight setup and it kills my pb superflash. Same price now as well. I don't use that anymore because I've migrated completely over to dynamo front and taillight setup (and yes, my dynamo diy taillight is brighter than anything on the market, I do have b&m products to compare to, and they are weak).


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