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Old 06-25-09, 08:50 AM   #1
raybo
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El-wire for people riding at night?

A recent thread about someone being killed while riding at 1am reminded me of riding at night at Burning Man (BM). There are no lights at BM and so everyone lights up their bikes with stuff called El-Wire. The plastic wire comes in any length and is powered by batteries (My 6-foot strand was powered with a single AA battery). It comes in all kinds of colors and is flexible enough to put into all kinds of configurations. When it is turned on, it looks like thin strands of neon light.

Of course, at BM there are no limits to what people do with the wire (birds, insects, artwork). But, if night riding is a possibility, el-wire might be a good thing to have.

Here is a link:http://www.thatscoolwire.com/?gclid=...FRdbbQodFyAkBg

Here's an idea of what you can do (and the thumping music that goes on 24x7 at BM): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-PORxJCF-Mg

Ray
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Old 06-25-09, 09:05 AM   #2
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why not just wear something like this?http://www.webbikeworld.com/r3/safet...beaconwear.htm
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Old 06-25-09, 09:13 AM   #3
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For night riding on the road I'd rather have good headlights, taillights and reflective material on my bike. Burning Man is a unique environment with few vehicles and lots of bikes and peds all coming at you from different angles and moving relatively slowly. This calls for different lighting than the higher speeds and uniform travel direction of bike riding on the road.

Having said that I just ordered a bunch of EL wire to decorate my Surly Pugsley for Burning Man this year.
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Old 06-25-09, 06:47 PM   #4
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But, if night riding is a possibility, el-wire might be a good thing to have.
Like this?
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Old 10-24-13, 11:37 AM   #5
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EL Clothing

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why not just wear something like this?http://www.webbikeworld.com/r3/safet...beaconwear.htm
Even better than that you can ride in style with 6 diffrent designs and 10 light color options. Check it out on kickstarter they are pretty sweet. http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/...kets-re-launch
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Old 10-24-13, 05:19 PM   #6
Jim Kukula
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sekuclip spoke reflectors are nice... plus reflective tape here and there... definitely headlight and tail lights too!

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Old 10-24-13, 05:21 PM   #7
Jim Kukula
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Here's my headlight as the sun is going down:
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Old 10-28-13, 09:46 AM   #8
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Problems with reflectors.

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sekuclip spoke reflectors are nice... plus reflective tape here and there... definitely headlight and tail lights too!


Reflectors are great but in my research that ive done there not very effective and its easy to confuse your reflection with every other thing on the road that reflects. Also you have to have light on you for them to work and by that time it can be way way to late. Also with light sources you can make them flash which is way more eye catching if you think about the way the brain and your eyes react while scanning the area your mind only picks up and brings to your consciousness things that your eyes fixate on. As such when a light is produced in darkness and is flashing it stands out so much more than even when you have light on a reflector because at the point when the light hits you every thing is lit up and about the same color the reflectors enhances the light but its still not as eye catching as light produced in darkness it creates less of a fixation. With less of a fixation its a toss up if it make it to your consciousness. This is why even with reflective gear people still get hit by cars and are not seen. I highly suggest these EL jackets that were to deigned to create eye fixations.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/...kets-re-launch
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Old 10-28-13, 10:32 AM   #9
Erick L
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Reflectors are great but in my research that ive done
What research? I bike I and drive and few things say "bike ahead" better than pedal and wheel reflectors. Add an active light on the rack and/or fender and more reflective tape on the rear fender. Most panniers have reflective parts too. Even better is a "slow vehicule" triangle. The problem with the clothes you're trying to sell is that you have to wear them.
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Old 10-28-13, 11:43 AM   #10
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... few things say "bike ahead" better than pedal and wheel reflectors. Add an active light on the rack and/or fender and more reflective tape on the rear fender. Most panniers have reflective parts too. Even better is a "slow vehicule" triangle. The problem with the clothes you're trying to sell is that you have to wear them.
I do not have pedal reflectors, but I put reflective tape on my left crankarm for some up and down movement for those behind me at night.

Also have purchased wheel reflectors for my wheels, I built up the wheels so they did not include reflectors.

I do not know who owns this bike, but when I saw it, I had to take a photo of it.

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Old 10-28-13, 12:08 PM   #11
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To be totally honest for me its not about selling something to you no matter what you may believe. I was rear ened on my motorcycle one night and I recognized a huge visibility problem and I started looking into it. I started this project to help people be visible.

The research I have done has been with eye fixation and how it translates to the brain. I've also talked with local construction companies one Being Kokosing about how reflective clothing and barrels affect safety and what they think of it. I found out the more people I talked to on job sites and in other scenarios like city roads that its hard to distinguish what some thing is based on its reflective signature but this also depends on where your at also. Now with putting reflectors on your pedals and things that move on your bike I totally agree its basically the same as a flashing light and creates a better eye fixation to drivers. But the huge problem with reflectors not taking away from how awesome they are in many different scenarios is that they have to have light on them to work so around turns or when your crossing roads you never see it coming till your in front of the head lights. That's where these jackets really shine forgive the pun... but you can see them coming and we have done tests where our lime green color is visible beyond 1500 feet basically a 1/4 of a mile.

Agreed putting them on is a problem in some instances when its hot out but its normally much cooler in the evenings when they are most needed.
I am mostly an advocate of putting lights on things to be safer just because of the research I've done but its up to every one to do their own research and find out for them selves I try not to be bias because I don't want to seem as though im talking out my ass for a sales pitch so I try to be real if you have any information contrary to mine I would be glade to read it.
Thanks
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Old 10-28-13, 12:32 PM   #12
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Reflectors are better than nothing but only work when an external light hits them and are limited in their range. Unfortunately by the time a car's headlights catch the reflectors, it might be too late for the car to avoid you. No doubt, a safer method is to have something on you or your bike that generates it's own light and can be seen at 360 dgrees and over a great distance. Remember the person driving the vehicle doesn't have the same spatial clues or depth perception that they have during lighted hours and therefore the farther away they can spot you, the more reaction time the driver has.
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Old 10-28-13, 03:33 PM   #13
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Yeah I have dynamo powered front and rear lights along with all the reflective stuff on my bike. My dynamo lights turn on and off automatically - it can be fun, coasting down a hill in and out of the shade, to feel the power kick on and off. The lights have capacitors to keep them on for a couple minutes if/when I stop. I seem to notice the lights kicking on mostly at the start, when the capacitors are empty and need to charge up. After a minute or so the vibration from the dynamo seems to mellow out.

I also have a battery powered light on my saddle bag. When I have my panniers on, they each have a battery light also. Usually I put these battery lights in blink mode, once it gets dark enough that I can see my headlight hitting the road ahead. Before it gets that dark I start to notice my headlight reflecting off road signs. Before even that, I just see my fork-crown mounted headlight illuminating the top of my front fender.

With all my lights and reflectors, I feel safer riding at night than during the day! Cars going by give me huge space!

The really dangerous time is riding into the sun. I sure try to time my rides to avoid that!
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