Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Commuting
Reload this Page >

Bike Light Suggestions

Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

Bike Light Suggestions

Old 06-06-18, 01:31 AM
Senior Member
ColonelSanders's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Posts: 3,862

Bikes: 2017 Surly Troll with XT Drive Train, 2017 Merida Big Nine XT Edition, 2016 Giant Toughroad SLR 2, 1995 Trek 830

Mentioned: 24 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1221 Post(s)
Liked 8 Times in 8 Posts
Originally Posted by a1penguin View Post
Yep. Cygolite Metro 550 up front and Cygolite Hotshot Pro for the back. If I had to do it over, I would buy a Cygolite 850 and use it on medium. The problem with pretty much any single battery headlight is that you only get 1.5 hours on max, which is often not long enough for my night time rides. Running the 850 on medium would give 3.5-4 hours run time.


This is why I bought the Cateye Volt 1600 and run it at a lower setting, you can get at least 8hrs out of it.
ColonelSanders is offline  
Old 06-06-18, 09:52 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 184

Bikes: Stromer ST-1; Gary Fisher SAAB edition; Dahon Speed D7; Motobecane Grand Touring 1972

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 34 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Massive overkill

I agree with the multiple light philosophy. What I've got is arguably overkill. But I gave up my car 19+ months ago....

So I have mounted a Thule pack n pedal rack in front, and altered it with a light bar. It's got 3 separate lights (cheap chinese stuff). I have a niterider on the handlebar as well as an Orp (which combines a medium loud horn and small "get noticed" light). I have another niterider for my helmet. With all of the lights on at the same time, I can sterilize snails ... the niteriders are USB charged (internal, better weather protection) and the cheap chinese lights have external packs. I carry an extra pack, and I rotate which lights are in use ...

For the back, I typically have two panniers ... so a light on each one, and one on the rack itself. I also have a seatpost mounted light.

For winter commuting, I also toss on an ankle light or two.

As my commute is typical 1hr or less, and I have multiple light options ... I don't really feel a need for dynamos; but that would be a natural next step.
Khb is offline  
Old 06-06-18, 10:14 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 184

Bikes: Stromer ST-1; Gary Fisher SAAB edition; Dahon Speed D7; Motobecane Grand Touring 1972

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 34 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Lightbar picture

Older configuration of my lightbar. The Orp (far left) is now back on the handlebar. In flashing mode it's a pretty good "pay attention" light. It's not a good "light up the road" light.
Khb is offline  
Old 06-07-18, 08:27 AM
Senior Member
chas58's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 3,455

Bikes: too many of all kinds

Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 668 Post(s)
Liked 18 Times in 15 Posts
Originally Posted by Papa Tom View Post
One more thing about ANY lights you choose...

It seems like every few weeks, the light you buy becomes obsolete. I thought my Cygolite Metro 850 was the brightest, most powerful light I could ever want or need. Just a few posts above, I see that someone mentioned a Metro 1100. Now I have buyer's remorse and I want to kill myself.

Don't get caught in the same frustrating cycle. Buy enough light for your purpose and then ignore whatever the lighting manufacturer does to try to convince you it's not enough.
I would rather have 2 lights than one 1100.
I can go on longer rides, by using two lights in series (one after the other)
I can have better coverage by useing two lights in tandem
I have a backup
I can mount on helmet and handlebars
I have a spare for a friend.

I'm not worried about my light becoming obsolete. I just use the old light as my second light - either on the handle bar or the helmet. Two lights rule (although 3 isn't bad either). Its hard to go back to one light in the dark once you get used to the coverage of multiple lights.
chas58 is offline  
Old 06-09-18, 11:00 AM
Senior Member
blue192's Avatar
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Ottawa
Posts: 365

Bikes: Khs Westwood, Jamis Allegro 3x

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 84 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I also agree with chas58, having one light on the helmet in addition to a bike mounted light is very handy indeed. (I use a Cateye Volt 800 on helmet and a Volt 1,700 mounted just above my fork)
blue192 is offline  
Old 06-18-18, 10:45 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Jun 2018
Posts: 12
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
My local Goodwill (Seattle Area) had a stash of brand new LED flashers. 2 lights for $2.99, a white and a red. 3 bright LED's per light. Several flashing and constant modes and they run on AA's. I bought several for myself and my kids. They are surprisingly good quality. They seemed to be a stocked item, not a surplus or a donation.
Whidbey88 is offline  
Old 07-05-18, 02:57 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 19
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I like ReeLights (the big set of front and backs) as "be seen" lights. You'll never worry about batteries again, and they're cheaper than a dynamo hub. Being bolted on and hard-wired, they're not an attraction for theft either.
Like RubeRad, I like a regular Cree flashlight for lighting up the road ahead. I mount mine using a super short handlebar stem (aluminum) with an aluminum flashlight body. It stays bolted on all the time, and is always at the right angle. Never had an issue with theft.
veets is offline  
Old 07-05-18, 03:13 PM
Senior Member
Join Date: May 2014
Location: USA
Posts: 707

Bikes: 2012 Trek DS 8.5

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 134 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
2WheelRide, here is a useful tool to search for front and rear bike lights: The Bike Light Database.

Combined with what folks are suggesting, it might help you think about what you're really looking for, what features you absolutely want, and which features you'd tolerate not having.
Clyde1820 is offline  
Old 07-05-18, 03:44 PM
Senior Member
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 1,705

Bikes: yes

Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 662 Post(s)
Liked 16 Times in 10 Posts
Modern bike has a handy headlight comparison guide, with pictures:


I like Niterider lights but their mounts are crap.

I have a Bontrager Ion 800 that will light up the sky, but it's brand new because it's a warranty replacement for the Bontrager Ion 700 that broke on me, so the jury is still out.

When I'm really doing a lot of night riding I like 2 lights - one on my helmet and one on the bars. As a bonus, the helmet light lets me annoy bad drivers.

Tail lights -- For visibility, the Serfas USL-TL60 can be seen for over a mile away. I've literally had drivers pull up to tell me how far away they could see it. HOWEVER, I've gone through 3 of them -- there's some design flaw in the charging port and it eventually stops working.

The tried-and-true Cygolite Hotshot has been steady-eddie reliable for me.

I just bought a Bontrager Flare R (to replace the Serfas, which died on me). I bought it after a buddy of mine had his on daytime mode during a 10-hour gravel race and it lasted the entire race. So far so good.
ksryder is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.