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Old 05-15-09, 09:04 PM   #1
himfilth
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Who rides at night?

Just curious to how many of you ride at night? I work 3rd shift so my ride to work is dark and depending on what time of year it is in the morning. Weither you do ride at night or don't, what's some things recommended for safety or to be seen better. I wear on of those orange mesh vest with yellow reflective stripes but sometimes don't feel like thats enough.
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Old 05-15-09, 09:07 PM   #2
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Just curious to how many of you ride at night? I work 3rd shift so my ride to work is dark and depending on what time of year it is in the morning. Weither you do ride at night or don't, what's some things recommended for safety or to be seen better. I wear on of those orange mesh vest with yellow reflective stripes but sometimes don't feel like thats enough.
My morning ride is usually before the sun rises.. Does that count??
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Old 05-15-09, 09:09 PM   #3
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Old 05-15-09, 10:06 PM   #4
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My after-work rides in the winter are in the dark. I think the vest is a great idea.

For night rides, I have two PlanetBike Superflash tail lights on flash mode. In the front, I use a Cateye LED blinky light in order to be seen and two LED flashlights with which to see. I've had good luck with this configuration of lights. No close calls. Vehicles gave me wide berth for the most part.
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Old 05-15-09, 10:55 PM   #5
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Headlight, Planet Bike Superflash blinky, reflective vest. Oh, I leave the reflectors on my bikes, or add them, even.

One key is stay off busy roads if you can. So more of my night riding will be done on neighborhood sidestreets and all.
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Old 05-15-09, 11:07 PM   #6
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We get as little as 6.5 hours of daylight in the winter so if you ride it is likely to be in the dark...

In the summer I love riding at night as it is when things cool down a little and the city gets quiet.

My jacket is reflective, I use front and rear LED's (Superflash and a 5 led 1 watt front) and also have a 10 watt nighthawk that turns night into day.

And then there's this... I run Marathons on quite a few bikes and love how visible they make a bicycle and the reflective material is 3M.

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Old 05-15-09, 11:19 PM   #7
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Going tomorrow to get some lights and flashers but where can I get the reflective tape for the tires? I've got some of the 3M tape that I use on my scooter but I want it to look as good as it is on your bikes, Sixty Fiver and 10 Wheels. Is it made with the tires or did you guys apply yourselves?
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Old 05-16-09, 03:45 AM   #8
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Going tomorrow to get some lights and flashers but where can I get the reflective tape for the tires? I've got some of the 3M tape that I use on my scooter but I want it to look as good as it is on your bikes, Sixty Fiver and 10 Wheels. Is it made with the tires or did you guys apply yourselves?
You can buy tires with reflective sidewalls. Performance Bike has some of their Forte brand that come with it, otherwise you will have to go with Schwalbe and they are pricey.

I ride at all hours of the day or night. For night riding I use my on board generator lights which range from excellent LED to glow worm incandescent on my old Raleigh (I also use an inexpensive LED as a backup) I run one PB Superflash on flash in addition to a solid on taillight. I wear a reflective vest/jacket, ones like you see the highway guys wear. In NC you are required by law to have a head light and a red rear reflector or light visible for 200ft.

And after reading the brochure I think I am going to get some copies to hand out to uninformed LEO's That is a newer version than the one I have been using. Also take issue with some of their "opinions".

Aaron
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Old 05-16-09, 04:17 AM   #9
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Usually if I cant sleep, I got for a mild ride around town. I just went for one tonight at it was about 2 am and 60*. I have my stock reflectors, Superflash rear light, Blaze 1w front light, a camping headlamp, and a freebee blinky on my backpack.
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Old 05-16-09, 04:23 AM   #10
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I rarely go out at night for specifically a night ride. But, I often do end up with a late afternoon ride, going over into night riding...
It's not really that I sense one is more vunerable at night. BIkes can be made ultra visible with reflective material. ositives about night riding. The quiet.. Negatives. Not seeing the road as well... I slow down because the road is less visible.
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Old 05-16-09, 04:46 AM   #11
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i usually work over time, and always start early before sun rise

i feel like a vampire on a bike....
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Old 05-16-09, 05:56 AM   #12
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3headlights
2 Coleman Max camping flashlights
planet bike 3-beamer

2taillights
PB Superflash
PB blinky

retroreflective tape everywhere
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Old 05-16-09, 07:14 AM   #13
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The tires with the reflective strips are nice, but you should still leave the spoke reflectors on (or get some). The reason is that the reflective tires don't indicate to a driver approaching from the side if your bike is rolling or not. With the spoke reflectors on there, it's easy for a car to see which way your bike is rolling, or if it's stationary.

-------

I ride to work at 10pm often and home at 4AM, yea it's dark. Sometimes I go out for night-riding on my days off as well. I prefer to stay off the city streets from about 1 AM to 3 AM however because that's when the bars close, and it's when the drunks hit the road.
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Old 05-16-09, 07:28 AM   #14
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Buy the brightest light you can afford.

A helmet light is nice to shine into the cars of people at intersections, just to make sure they know you are there.

Tubes, patches, tools and know how.

I love riding at night. With the vast majority of people sound asleep the world is an OK place.
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Old 05-16-09, 08:27 AM   #15
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I do pre-dawn rides (3am - 5am) during the week, and its great; no cars, (almost) all green traffic lights, just me and the bike hammerin' it out for 15-25 miles. I use a reflective vest, one light on the front, two blinkies on the rear, and reflectors in the spokes. I prefer the spoke reflectors over reflective tires since the human eye picks up movement, and the rotating reflectors should attract a little more attention from the few drivers I meet vs the spinning tires with no 'breaks' in their movement.
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Old 05-16-09, 09:00 AM   #16
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You can buy tires with reflective sidewalls. Performance Bike has some of their Forte brand that come with it, otherwise you will have to go with Schwalbe and they are pricey.
Aaron
The Kenda Kwick Trax that I bought ~2 years ago have reflective stripes
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Old 05-16-09, 09:32 AM   #17
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I would suggest riding with 2 rear blinkies, a headlight and a front blinkie (white). People notice blinking lights better than constant ones. As far as lighting goes, the more the merrier. If it doesn't bother you, go down the road looking like a Christmas tree.
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Old 05-16-09, 04:15 PM   #18
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I work second shift and commute home at about midnight. I enjoy it. Very few cars on the road, and I can see them a half mile away. I would not want to commute in the dark at rush hour. That would be high risk around here.
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Old 05-16-09, 05:17 PM   #19
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I would suggest riding with 2 rear blinkies, a headlight and a front blinkie (white). People notice blinking lights better than constant ones. As far as lighting goes, the more the merrier. If it doesn't bother you, go down the road looking like a Christmas tree.
I think the best combination is a flasher and a steady light. It is hard to focus and judge distance on a flasher only.

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Old 05-17-09, 03:10 AM   #20
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I usually have my 3 beamer set to blinky mode, while the flashlights are steady only.

Not convinced blinky is useful, I've tried looking at the bike from 50ft down the street and the blinky dissapears in the brightness of the other headlights.
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Old 05-17-09, 04:47 AM   #21
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In winter I was doing rides between 11PM and 2AM in the morning around the center of Manchester, only an 18mile loop, sometimes I'd do it twice but usually I would never have enough energy as I always tired myself out. I have a Fenix LD20 light that is supposed to be good enough for going into the county at night, but I don't trust it, I stay where there is plenty of road lights.
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Old 05-17-09, 05:19 AM   #22
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The tires with the reflective strips are nice, but you should still leave the spoke reflectors on (or get some). The reason is that the reflective tires don't indicate to a driver approaching from the side if your bike is rolling or not. With the spoke reflectors on there, it's easy for a car to see which way your bike is rolling, or if it's stationary.

-------

I ride to work at 10pm often and home at 4AM, yea it's dark. Sometimes I go out for night-riding on my days off as well. I prefer to stay off the city streets from about 1 AM to 3 AM however because that's when the bars close, and it's when the drunks hit the road.
~
Good point. I took my refelctors off when I got tires that had the reflective sidewalls. Guess I'll dig them out and put them back on.
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Old 05-17-09, 09:25 AM   #23
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Good point. I took my refelctors off when I got tires that had the reflective sidewalls. Guess I'll dig them out and put them back on.
I don't generally like the wheel reflectors, but I do use small pieces of prismatic tape on the rim surface between the spokes, very nice strobe effect.

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Old 05-17-09, 10:37 AM   #24
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Thanks everyone, headed out between today and tomorrow to get some lights. Still got my reflectors on my tires but also going to order some of the tires with the reflective strip on them. I myself enjoy riding better at night mainly cause of less cars and its quite and cooloer.
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Old 05-17-09, 11:00 AM   #25
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I have an 8km/5mile urban commute and occasionally ride home about 11 pm. Very enjoyable. However one time I was working to a deadline and rode home after midnight, and I came very close to running over some skunks that were almost invisible despite my headlamp.
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