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Bike light recommendations?

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Bike light recommendations?

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Old 01-16-19, 07:40 AM
  #101  
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Thanks @cyccommute i think that the mounts you listed are great. I tend to switch back and forth between helmets depending on the temps and don't have to have to switch the light as well. I have thought about a cygolite Dart 350. i know a guy who put one that size on his helmet. It looked like it would mount pretty easy and doesn't weigh much.
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Old 01-16-19, 03:43 PM
  #102  
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Whatever light you use, please don't point it up into the faces of fellow riders passing you in the opposite direction...
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Old 02-15-19, 11:52 AM
  #103  
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Originally Posted by sqwertl View Post
I bike commute to work every day and with the days getting shorter, I wanted to see if anyone had a recommendation for a good bike light. I usually leave work at 7 or 8pm, so it's pitch black outside from October - February. Luckily I'm in Chicago so there are plenty of street lights, but these don't make me any more visible to cars (bike lanes just mean more space for them to attempt u turns) and there's tons of construction so I'd love to see the road more clearly to avoid bumpy damaged spots. I have been looking at NiteRider Lumina, but I have no experience in buying lights and want to make the best purchase. A good mounting system, bright wide beam, and decent battery life are my main focuses. Easy mounting and unmounting would be a plus, because I ride two different bikes depending on if it's snowing/rainy or clear outside.
I use Monkeylectric on the spokes. They do consume batteries but they illuminate well and stand up to the conditions.

I use 2 Cycle Torch "night owl" headlights, which each came with a rear light. The advantage to Cycle Torch lights is that they are charged by USB port on computers (or your USB-supporting surge protector).
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Old 02-20-19, 04:45 PM
  #104  
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I never understood how non-standard batteries are an "advantage". To me, having to take the light (or whatever device) out of service to charge the battery is a major disadvantage. That's why I find, for example, the spoke-mounted MonkeyLights to be at an advantage. It takes standard AAs. I run all NiMH rechargeables, so when the batteries are getting weak, I swap in a charged up set and charge the weak set. I even have several little two-up AA/AAA USB chargers, keep one in each desk drawer and each pannier/bag/pack/etc, so I can charge two at a time almost anywhere. In a pinch, I can go to any store and get a set of Alkalines.
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Old 02-20-19, 05:35 PM
  #105  
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18640 batteries (commonly used in powerful LED flashlights) are not hard to find online (although I've never seen them in a brick&mortar store), and hold many many more mAh. The flashlight I use on my bike requires one 18650, I keep two in rotation, as you describe. For my usage, I charge at most weekly in the winter. My light also can take three AAAs next to each other in a triangle, if it comes to that. The light had a plastic adapter shell to hold them, I've never tried to use it, and it is surely long lost now.

Some LED lights take CR150 batteries, which are also commonly used in cameras, and I have found them in drug stores before.
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Old 02-20-19, 07:18 PM
  #106  
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Now this ^^^^^^ kind of flexibilty makes sense, especially if the device itself doesn't have to be used as the charger. Def. worth looking into.
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Old 02-20-19, 10:31 PM
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I guess I never had a problem popping the light off my bike to plug it into the work computer. I don't see how that's any better or worse than popping it off the bike to change a battery, be it rechargeable or not.

My headlight has an 18650 in it but it hasn't needed replacement yet.
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Old 02-20-19, 10:52 PM
  #108  
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I really liked my Lezyne megadrive. Great design, very bright at 1200 lumen, but it would just not fit in my cockpit with hydraulic brake cables etc. And their newer designs do not have the dame features (field replaceable lithium batteries and clever mechanism of waterproofing of the battery. They are still good I am sure,.

No I use a garmin varia Ut800. At 800 lumen it is not as bright as the Lezyne. Also the battery has a limited duration and is not field replaceable - but good enough for my 30 mi RT commute ( a good part on unlit paths and through woods in Chicagoland). Most important, It has a go pro mount and mounts under my garmin 520 mount. An added feature is it can be controlled by the 520 and has a number of different modes (including based on speed) and it has a good flashing mode for visibility that lasts a long time. The light can be taken off or attached easily with just a twist of the mounting ring (which you can see in the attached photo - the knurled ring above the light).. I can also mount it in my k-edge garmin mount on my road bike. You can mount it on any bar accessory that has the correct orientation go pro undermount.

Not sure if you are looking for anything like this, but thought I'd trow it in.

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Old 02-20-19, 11:12 PM
  #109  
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Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
I guess I never had a problem popping the light off my bike to plug it into the work computer. I don't see how that's any better or worse than popping it off the bike to change a battery, be it rechargeable or not.
With a removable battery, you can pop in a fresh set and be up and running again with no downtime while the other batteries charge. If you've ever left a light on all day (or overnight) and come out to a light with flat batteries, you appreciate the option to swap batteries and go.
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Old 02-21-19, 08:20 AM
  #110  
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Originally Posted by madpogue View Post
Now this ^^^^^^ kind of flexibilty makes sense, especially if the device itself doesn't have to be used as the charger. Def. worth looking into.
Here's a picture and a link for the record. These lights have gotten crazy cheap, I paid like $10-15 a few years ago, now the light is even cheaper than a decent battery (I bought my pair of 18650 batteries separately from batteryjunction.com for like $7 each)




https://www.ebay.com/itm/CREE-T6-LED...szc:rk:32:pf:0
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Old 02-21-19, 01:47 PM
  #111  
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Originally Posted by RubeRad View Post
18650 batteries (commonly used in powerful LED flashlights) are not hard to find online (although I've never seen them in a brick&mortar store), and hold many many more mAh.
My local Fry's brick&mortar stocks 'em. My Fenix BC21R bike headlamp (with its shaped beam) uses one.
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Old 02-21-19, 03:16 PM
  #112  
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Originally Posted by tcs View Post
My local Fry's brick&mortar stocks 'em. My Fenix BC21R bike headlamp (with its shaped beam) uses one.
OK, that's not surprising, but if you're out riding who knows where and desperate for batteries, you're much more likely to come across a convenience, drug, or grocery store.
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Old 02-21-19, 06:08 PM
  #113  
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My Fenix BC21R will accept 2X CR123A in place of the 1X 18650. I see CR123A in the ubiquitous CVS corner drug stores in my area. Since I carry a spare charged 3400mAh Panasonic 18650, it's just a theoretical issue for me. YMMV.
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Old 02-21-19, 06:26 PM
  #114  
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Is that a standard thing, that 2x CR123A can take the place of 1X 18650? I assume the size is right, so they can sneak right in like a tower of minions in a trench coat sneaking into the movies with one ticket. But does the electronics work out right (volts? watts? amps? ohms? currents? resistances? other electric words?)
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Old 02-21-19, 07:20 PM
  #115  
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^^^^ Current, power, resistance are functions of the LOAD. Voltage would vary with how the batteries are arranged. Your old high school physics info still applies. If the tw CR123As are stacked in series, the voltage would be the sum of the voltages of the two batteries. An 18650 is 3.7V; I'd have to look up a CR123A.

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Old 02-21-19, 08:11 PM
  #116  
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If you work sitting at a computer or near a power outlet*, a USB recharged battery light would be practical as long as you trip does not exceed the battery run time

and if close get 2..

*Plug in USB power converter like your Phone Charger?





....
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Old 02-21-19, 08:19 PM
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Originally Posted by madpogue View Post
^^^^ Current, power, resistance are functions of the LOAD. Voltage would vary with how the batteries are arranged. Your old high school physics info still applies. If the tw CR123As are stacked in series, the voltage would be the sum of the voltages of the two batteries. An 18650 is 3.7V; I'd have to look up a CR123A.
Yeah I do not have access to my old high school physics info. That part of my brain has long since calcified.

If 2 CR123As are filling the space of 1 18650, then they would be stacked in series (like a tower of minions in a trench coat (why does the internet have no picture like this? I could have sworn they did this gag in at least one of the Despicable Me movies!))

the webz does say it's in there, but not giving me pictures...
https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.p...otemPoleTrench

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Old 02-22-19, 07:13 AM
  #118  
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The LOAD or light in this case, regulates the power. A good load incorporates a good regulator or power converter for safe operation. A cheap load produces grief.


I like the 18650 cell. Long life and rechargeable. The high current capability of the 18650 must be respected though. Throw a fully charged cell into your pocket with keys and you'll have something like this ..,
A safe way to carry spare 18650s is found at walmart in the camping section
A re-purposed waterproof match case with a 18650 fit.
.

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Old 02-22-19, 09:18 AM
  #119  
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Originally Posted by RubeRad View Post
Is that a standard thing, that 2x CR123A can take the place of 1X 18650? I assume the size is right, so they can sneak right in like a tower of minions in a trench coat sneaking into the movies with one ticket. But does the electronics work out right (volts? watts? amps? ohms? currents? resistances? other electric words?)
Fenix recommends non-rechargeable CR123A only so really just an emergency solution. Voltage will be roughly double so you would need to turn down the brightness or it wouldn't last as long.
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Old 02-22-19, 10:12 AM
  #120  
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i have two lights front and two rear. Last week on my ride in my rechargeable Cyglolite had died. I forgot to charge after a week of riding last week. luckily I had my charged 5000mAh battery pack running my Orphos Flare PRo Red. i might drop one of the lights/ batteries when it is warmer but in the dark ages of winter i like having the extra light and redundancy.
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Old 02-22-19, 10:13 AM
  #121  
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^^^^^ Yeah, 6V in series vs. 3.7. From what I know of LEDs, they tolerate a wide voltage range, but indeed, won't last as long at higher voltage. Most any other device would probably not be as forgiving; an old-school tungsten bulb, for example, would probably burn out in seconds or minutes at nearly twice the rated voltage.

I'd be more tempted to run two very weak CR123As, or one good one and one dead one (as a conductor), in such a situation.

Turns out I have a slew of 18650s, from an abandoned project to rebuild a Ryobi 18V battery pack. I just ordered a light like the one depicted by @RubeRad , with a charger and bracket.
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Old 02-25-19, 08:06 AM
  #122  
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Originally Posted by gregf83 View Post
Fenix recommends non-rechargeable CR123A only so really just an emergency solution. Voltage will be roughly double so you would need to turn down the brightness or it wouldn't last as long.
For my 18650 light, I already generally only run it on medium.
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Old 03-01-19, 08:00 AM
  #123  
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Originally Posted by madpogue View Post
^^^^^ Yeah, 6V in series vs. 3.7. From what I know of LEDs, they tolerate a wide voltage range, but indeed, won't last as long at higher voltage. Most any other device would probably not be as forgiving; an old-school tungsten bulb, for example, would probably burn out in seconds or minutes at nearly twice the rated voltage.

I'd be more tempted to run two very weak CR123As, or one good one and one dead one (as a conductor), in such a situation.

Turns out I have a slew of 18650s, from an abandoned project to rebuild a Ryobi 18V battery pack. I just ordered a light like the one depicted by @RubeRad , with a charger and bracket.
Don't run weak cr123s. Don't use one bad one as a conductor When discharged too low they can explode, start a fire, or pop and release lithium gas ( which is what happened to me). Don't use batteries not recommended for any light.
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Old 03-01-19, 08:19 AM
  #124  
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^^^^^ Eek, good info there. That would disincline me to run CR123As in anything.
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Old 03-01-19, 08:26 AM
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Me too.
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