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Old 11-09-09, 09:29 AM   #1
CliftonGK1
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To the guy who yelled at me on the Sam. River Trail

If you know, or are, the guy heading towards Redmond who yelled "Cover your (expletive) light!" at me this morning:
Choke on a spoke. Seriously.

I thought at first that maybe I forgot to turn my helmet lamp off when I got on the trail, and maybe I shined it in your eyes; but no... you were complaining about the headlight on my bike. Guess what? Just because you own an 800L photon torpedo mounted on your handlebars and you have the "courtesy" to cover it (instead of just mounting and aiming it properly) doesn't mean that everyone else is going to go ninja just because we're passing you. My light is mounted underneath my front rack, on my drive side, aimed toward the ground. Yes, there is some supplemental top-spill which allows me to see objects at about the level of a medium sized sedan's trunk. You, however, acted like I have twin B&M Big Bangs mounted on my shoulders.
Rinse the sand out of your chamois and STFU.

Thanx for ruining the remainder of my ride.
- Clifton.

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Old 11-09-09, 12:46 PM   #2
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Thanx for ruining the remainder of my ride.
- Clifton.

Wow! We gotta somehow let this kind of stuff roll off our back...

I had one of those horn blasters (Get out of my way! Important CAR coming through!) behind me last night and let it ruin the rest of my ride, too...
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Old 11-09-09, 01:42 PM   #3
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Wow! We gotta somehow let this kind of stuff roll off our back...
I should. For some reason, a fellow cyclist giving me flak to cover my low-mounted, low-aimed lamp which I can't even reach from a riding position torqued me even more than the driver who almost ran me over a half mile from my office.

I could understand how it would be blinding if he was on a recumbent trike or a lowracer, but for Merckx' sake, he was riding a regular old diamond frame.
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Old 11-09-09, 03:03 PM   #4
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Kind of off topic but what is the bag you have on the front the bike? Looks nice
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Old 11-09-09, 03:29 PM   #5
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I think the appropriate response would have been F* you.
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Old 11-09-09, 04:30 PM   #6
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One thing I (think) I have noticed this fall is that everyone's lights have gotten brighter. As the march of LED technology continues, it seems to me that more and more of the cyclists I pass commuting have upgraded to pretty bright stuff.

So, could be the guy you passed has worked up a bunch of frustration over bright lights in general, and just took it out on you.

I predict more yelling going forward, not less.
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Old 11-09-09, 04:57 PM   #7
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Count me in that group wtih brighter LEDs this fall. Just upgraded my NiteRider MiniNewt single to the twin lamp 400 setup. Makes Lake Washington Blvd after 5 pm on a weekday almost comfortable.
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Old 11-09-09, 05:12 PM   #8
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Kind of off topic but what is the bag you have on the front the bike? Looks nice


Well, we can appreciate his setup, even if the guy on the trail didn't...
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Old 11-09-09, 05:22 PM   #9
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Kind of off topic but what is the bag you have on the front the bike? Looks nice
It's a Gilles Berthoud GB28, sitting on a Velo-Orange chromed steel Randonneur Rack. The GB28 is a 12L rack-mounted front bag. Yep, that's no typo: Twelve Litre capacity. It's a phracking cavern, seriously. You can stand a 6-pack in there with room to spare. That's a 62cm frame with an inch of spacers and a 25-degree positive rise stem, for size reference.

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Old 11-09-09, 08:07 PM   #10
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It's a Gilles Berthoud GB28, sitting on a Velo-Orange chromed steel Randonneur Rack. The GB28 is a 12L rack-mounted front bag. Yep, that's no typo: Twelve Litre capacity. It's a phracking cavern, seriously. You can stand a 6-pack in there with room to spare. That's a 62cm frame with an inch of spacers and a 25-degree positive rise stem, for size reference.

Sweet setup
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Old 11-09-09, 10:34 PM   #11
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Funny (no ha ha), car lamps are burning 110 watts and seriously hurt if you get a straight on shot down the optic nerve. Those hurt me more than even the white hot LED lamps.
Just can't see (pardon the pun) your lamp really blazing anyone, looks like it's aimed down pretty well. Wonder if he was riding uphill as you crested and you got him. Anyway, seems a overreaction.
Nice set up , hows that lamp work in fog? Looks like the low mount would do pretty well.
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Old 11-09-09, 10:51 PM   #12
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I feel your pain Clifton.

I run a 600 lumen LED light on my helmet. When passing another bicycle I am always careful to aim it off the right side of the trail. Every once in a while I still get a cyclist who will yell "cover your light" or "can't see". I mean, give me a break, I am aiming the damn thing off the right side of the trail, it's got a good spot beam (not much light spillover), and they are on the left side of the trail. They can see just fine, they are just being difficult.

I ignore them and ride on.
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Old 11-10-09, 12:29 PM   #13
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I would never yell at someone but I do have to side with the cyclist who did yell at you. S/he couldn't see, and you both were likely traveling too fast for a polite request along the lines of "your headlight is angled up into my eyes and completely blinding me. Please consider changing the angle to minimize this effect. Thank you. Have a nice day."

So yes, let it roll off you. Given more time, a more polite request probably would have occurred.

These lights aren't just bright, they're blinding....and when it's 530am and it's raining and raisin bran for substrate and I can't see because the light is shining in my eyes, it's dangerous. It's bad enough that leaves disguise the edge of the trail, other cyclists blinding me isn't ideal.

I thank all the cyclists who do cover their lights....I'm trying to remember do the same now, when I'm not jumping those tree roots on the BG near the UW. Dang, they've gotten big!
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Old 11-10-09, 12:56 PM   #14
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BTW, this problem is why I really liked the 200L Dinotte headlights I was using until this winter. They are mounted on rubber o-rings, and it allowed me to change the aim of the lights when I was on a MUP, or even turn one light off and leaver the other on.

However, this winter I upgraded to a Dinotte 400L, which has a "hard" plastic mount; the aim can only be changed with a screwdriver. I have tried to make sure the 400L is pointed down low, and I paired it with a 200L still on the rubber O-rings. So when I find myself on a MUP (like crossing the I90 bridge), I end up using some combination of turning off a light, re-aiming the 200L, and/or covering a light with a hand to avoid blinding other cyclists.

Even though I'm aware of the issue, I can't promise that I perfectly avoid blinding oncoming cyclists. As mentioned above, if you're dodging obstacles in the dark and the rain, it can be hard to get a hand free to avoid blinding others.
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Old 11-10-09, 07:34 PM   #15
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These lights aren't just bright, they're blinding....
Indeed. Clifton, it wasn't me that yelled, but I've done it before - being blinded by oncoming traffic on a skinny trail in the dark is not fun.. I suggest riding towards a window/mirror and "seeing" for yourself if possible.

Some lights actually cut the beam off at the top (like my halogen E6), you might look into that if you get too much "feedback" out there on the surly MUPs. =]

Anyway, see ya at the brevets next year!
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Old 11-10-09, 10:50 PM   #16
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I would never yell at someone but I do have to side with the cyclist who did yell at you. S/he couldn't see, and you both were likely traveling too fast for a polite request along the lines of "your headlight is angled up into my eyes and completely blinding me. Please consider changing the angle to minimize this effect. Thank you. Have a nice day."
Take another look at the mount position and angle of that headlight. The top spill of the lamp isn't high enough for me to illuminate someone's reflective tape on their jacket. If I can't see the beam reflecting off them, then it's not shining on them... most certainly not enough to warrant a profane scolding such as I recieved.

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Indeed. Clifton, it wasn't me that yelled, but I've done it before - being blinded by oncoming traffic on a skinny trail in the dark is not fun.. I suggest riding towards a window/mirror and "seeing" for yourself if possible.

Some lights actually cut the beam off at the top (like my halogen E6), you might look into that if you get too much "feedback" out there on the surly MUPs. =]

Anyway, see ya at the brevets next year!
I've checked it via a few methods: Window reflection (not blinding). Beam pattern on a wall (top spill below a standard sedan trunk.) And finally, I'm not blinded by the light in a car's rear view mirror as I pull up behind them, so it's not even tall enough a pattern to hit that.
I've got a Cyo on my singlespeed, and I'm guessing he'd have yelled about that one too.

I've got a very full brevet ticket for next season! I'll be seeing you at many events.
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Old 11-11-09, 09:33 PM   #17
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"I run a 600 lumen LED light on my helmet."

@@@

Interested in the details - such as how mounted, what light, etc. Battery pack on back?

I need something for rail tunnels next season. Looking around.
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Old 11-13-09, 12:10 AM   #18
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"I run a 600 lumen LED light on my helmet."

@@@

Interested in the details - such as how mounted, what light, etc. Battery pack on back?

I need something for rail tunnels next season. Looking around.
My light is a Dinotte 600L. It comes with a helmet mount. Battery is small, waterproof and I either put it into the pocket on my jersey or velcro it to a loop on my riding shorts.

The Dinotte lights are really expensive, but very well made. I bought mine for mountain biking, and it has absorbed a LOT of abuse.

I also own a Magicshine 900. Advertised at 900 lumens, but it's not as bright as my 600 lumen light. But, it only costs $85. A helmet mount is $10 extra. It's not nearly as well-built as the Dinotte light, and the battery pack is not waterproof, but the pricepoint is pretty attractive. I don't mountain bike with it, but I do commute with it, and it's fine for road riding.

http://www.geomangear.com/index.php?...enihhogol9vfv3

http://www.dinottelighting.com/
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Old 01-10-10, 03:49 PM   #19
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We all experience far brighter and poorly aimed car headlights without melting down, but a bit of flash from a fellow cyclist often results in twisted knickers. Bike lights are getting brighter every year and for good reason. We are competing for visibility with some very bright objects on the roadways and every little bit helps. Maybe we should spend more effort fighting the good fight to get some reasonable widths and maintenance standards for bike paths rather than yelling at each other. Personally, I consider every bike to be one less car-critter trying to kill me and I suspect that most cyclists are one bad encounter away from going back to being a fossil-fool. That said, none of us would like to be permanently judged by our worst moments; maybe the yeller was just having one of those days that are best forgotten.
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Old 01-10-10, 08:53 PM   #20
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people that ride the B-G need to HT U and stop taking everyone's personal lighting arrays as personal insults.

there are always going to be a few yellers out there, personally i think they need to learn how to ride a bike at night on a trail with occasional bright headlights.


Tip: look down, take a bead on the edge of the pavement. look away from the light. Easy pleasy.

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Old 01-11-10, 07:18 AM   #21
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I get the occasional, "barker" while riding on the bike paths aswell. I don't let it get to me and just go about my day with a smile.
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Old 01-11-10, 11:08 AM   #22
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I've gotten yelled at a few times over my Dinotte 200L. As long as it's pointed down at the ground, and I generally keep it aimed 5 - 10 feet in front of me, I just ignore it.
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Old 01-11-10, 04:28 PM   #23
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Tip: look down, take a bead on the edge of the pavement. look away from the light. Easy pleasy.
There's a couple guys with really bright lights on their helmets, and they seem to get transfixed by oncoming riders so the light is right in your (my) face; and Bek's technique listed here works just fine for me.
Honestly, I've encountered trucks with far worse lighting set ups at blinding angles than anything mounted on a bike.
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Old 01-11-10, 05:20 PM   #24
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I have a light on my recumbent, you saw it on the SIR training ride. Completely out of reach for me while riding. I have had a similar experience on my commute on the SRT with a "barker". I just ignore it. Heck my light is a IQ Cyo, with the squared off upper and left shape to be complaint with German regulations. It shouldn't be a problem for someone riding toward me. I also use Bek's technique for riding trails while facing bright lights. I find trucks and SUVs often have much worse lighting setups but then I DO ride a recumbent and am pretty low.
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