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Light systems for commuting.

Old 06-02-02, 10:02 AM
  #1  
Anders K
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Light systems for commuting.

Hello everybody, Iīm thinking of getting me a light system. I want a dynamohub, fit and forget. Always there and no noticable drag. No battery to run out and to recharge. Was thinking of a Schmidt SON, but donīt know which lamps to choose. I was thinking of a rear and a front lamp. Have heard or read of a lamp which charge it self up the first mile or so to even shine when bike comes to complete stop for some minutes, that sounds great because I will be visible even when waiting for stopligths to change to green. Anyone with recommendations?

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Old 06-02-02, 11:59 AM
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Anders,
From what I have read, Schmidt is the ONLY way to go for dynohubs. D*Alex has raved about them. You might PM him in case he doesn't see this thread. I also have read of a light with a little capacitor that provides a few minutes of light when stopped for short periods like a stop light or stop sign. See if Lumotec has one. In the US, peterwhitecycles.com handles both Schmidt dynohubs and Lumotec lights to use with them. Check his site and email him if you have questions. Better yet, surely someone in Sweden handles both brands.
Regards,
Raymond
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Old 06-03-02, 12:29 AM
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Try Ken Keiffers web site. He had a bunch of information on them. I had considered them at one time, and still do, as the rechargable battery is last less and less, and the cold here in MN deminishes the length of time too, unless it is sheltered in coat.
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Old 06-03-02, 01:20 AM
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naisme; do you have an address for Ken Keiffers webpage?

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Old 06-03-02, 05:51 AM
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Ummm.......actually, I have a Shimano Nexus dynohub.
I'd love to have a Schmidt, but that was just a bit too expensive for a student. Still, I'd like a Schmidt, and perhaps I'll put one on my current roadbike when I retire it to 'training' useage, once I build my new bike.
As far as the dynohub goes, I haven't once been stranded without current, whereas that used to happen about once a week with batteries. The light from my Lumotec light is good straight ahead, a little weak on the sides, but I guess I cuold always use my old battery light for fill, if the need arises. So far, it hasn't.
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Old 06-03-02, 12:47 PM
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Originally posted by Anders K
naisme; do you have an address for Ken Keiffers webpage?

Anders K
Sweden
https://www.kenkifer.com/bikepages/
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Old 06-04-02, 05:52 AM
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I use a night ride classic plus headlight and a night rider tail light, most of the year my commute involves at least one way in the dark, I use the tail light in the morning all year to give the steel box operators all the help I can to see me. I never run short of battery, my commute is just over 19 miles each way. My routine is to put the charger on as soon as I get home, it takes about 1.5 to 2 hours to fully charge the battery. he system is just over three years old, I use it every day including rain. It has never let me down, for daily commuting, it's the best I've found, the headlight is bright and the tail light is visible even in sunlight. I think on an extended tour a gen set would be a better choice but for daily commuting from home, I believe the night rider is the way to go.
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Old 06-04-02, 07:06 AM
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I agree about the NiteRider. I use a Digital Pro Model. I just got it last fall, but it performed well through hail, sleet and snow all winter. An additional plus is easily moving it (removing it) from bike to bike, I change bikes depending on the weather. I did have a problem with the 1st one I bought, but Performance replaced it.
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Old 07-11-02, 06:42 AM
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I use a eternaLight Marine on my helmet. This light does a reasonable job lighting the roadway and is excellent for visually letting motorist know you are there as you approach them at
right angles. A picture of my helmet setup can be seen at:

https://www.hazbro.com/trek/images/helmet.jpg

The eternaLights make it through an entire winter on a single set of lithium batteries. Details on this LED flashlight can be seen at:

https://www.theledlight.com/eterna-light.html

As for rear safety lights, I attach SAE auto reflectors to the back of the Burley d'Lite trailer I tow. I add a couple of 7-LED red flashers to this setup. The SAE reflectors were a mere $1.00 at an auto parts store and have a much higher reflective rating than the standard reflectors found on bikes.
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Old 07-11-02, 12:16 PM
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TCHazzard,

Cool light. Did you attach that with a hook-and-loop strap (Velcro), glued hook-and-loop, something else?

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Old 07-11-02, 12:46 PM
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Hi; I bought a 2"x3" self sticking velcro pair. I stuck one side on the top of the helmet and the other on the bottom of the light. I then put on the velcro wire wrap (the red wrap you see) as a safety in the event the velcro on the helmet failed (something which has not happened in three years of commuting year round here in Southern Maine.

One thing to note, although this light does not light up the road very far in front of you, I find I can get drivers attention a lot more quickly, especially in one of the programmed strobe modes.

Enjoy!
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Old 07-12-02, 03:31 AM
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I got my Schmidt dynamo hub a week ago. Have not yet mounted any lights. It seems like a very high quality item. Looks good and feels good. The first thing I noticed when I got it per post from SJSC in UK was the force I had to apply to move the hub axle. But when I mounted the wheel and tryed to spinn it the mass of the rim and tyre along whith the rotation effect makes the wheel spin rather friction free. The hub is not the lightest but I can live with that. Specially since I choosed a Sun Rhyno rim for the wheel at about 725 grams. Makes a strong wheel which hopefully will stand everything Iīm gonna thow it at

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Old 07-12-02, 03:48 AM
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Apparently that stiff rotation is deceptive. The hub needs to be "forced" through one segment but then gets a a boost through the next. With about 30 segments, the effect is that you hardly feel the resistance.
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Old 07-12-02, 07:00 AM
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See my post on this same subject at:

https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...1136#post91136

The ethernaLight illuminates the road pretty well, is easy on batterys and the light is always where you are looking.
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Old 07-12-02, 07:07 AM
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Blarg! I meant to post this in a different thread.
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Old 07-12-02, 07:18 AM
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tchazzard and others,

So the question must now be asked:

How does the eternlight illuminate the road as compared to the more expensive/traditional NiteRider Classic approach? This could be the deciding factor for me. I like the battery life and flexibility/light weight of the eternalight but I wonder if it will provide the light I need when cruising through the park after darkness sets in. The park is not lighted, though it is a relatively low traffic two lane roadway with speed limit of 25MPH (realistically, cars travel more in the 35-40 mph range and often pass cyclists aggressively).

Can anyone compare the NiteRider Classic vs. the eternalight in terms of lighting the road in front?

Thanks.
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Old 07-12-02, 11:09 AM
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As I think I mentioned below, the eternalight does not project anywhere as far as the higher end bike lights. This is due to the limits of the LED technology. If you are doing the park thing, I would get a normal bike light. If you are riding on mostly lit streets and want a significant frontal safety signature, then the eternalight is just the thing.
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Old 07-12-02, 11:41 AM
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Are there any high-powered dynohubs? I've tried one and it had hardly any resistance, it must be possible to get 2x or 4x the power and actually get a useful amount of light.
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Old 07-12-02, 02:50 PM
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Anders K
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Ni Knight; If you mean like 12 v, Schmidt is working on such a model which comes with slightly more drag than their 6 v model.

I must say about Schmidt dynohub it seems strong. I took it on a road ride to day but went off road for as long time as on (thank god for a multi capable bike). Feels like a strong hub which hopfully will hold for 50 000 miles or something before needing service.

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Old 07-18-02, 05:26 AM
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I'm a little late on this lighting thread and I know what I am about to write has nothing to do with generators but maybe not everyone wants or can afford a generator for their bike.

My Trek was equipped with a white reflector on the front fork and was held fast by a very stout mounting bracket. I removed the reflector and bent the bracket so the portion where the reflector used to be attached was now basically parallel to the road. With a hose clamp from the auto-parts store, I mounted a waterproof flashlight that runs on 2 D-cells batteries. The light has an adjustable beam, bulbs that are available almost everywhere as is the energy source, and has been a very inexpensive system to put together.

bracket: came with the bike
hose clamp: $1.29
flashlight: $0.50 at a yard sale

Believe it or not, I have actually been "flashed" by oncoming traffic on a couple occasions because the light was too bright. A simple reach over the bars and turn of the head of the light adjusted the beam to a cover a wider swath and was less annoying for oncoming traffic.

From time to time I still contemplate getting a "real" bike lighting system that is a little lighter in weight but this setup works so well, why change? The mounting system obviously doesn't look as professional as the specifically-designed systems, but it is not unattractive either (in my opinion).

I have a pic but it is too large of a file to send across the forum. If you are interested, drop me a note off-list and I'll mail one to you direct. That is, until I figure out how to reduce the file size...any suggestions?

DJ
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Old 07-18-02, 06:25 AM
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Don Johnsonīs lightning setup.

Last edited by Anders K; 07-18-02 at 06:30 AM.
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Old 07-18-02, 06:27 AM
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Donīs light in detail.
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Old 08-03-02, 10:27 AM
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I have just fitted a Busch & Müller Oval Senso Plus frontlight to the Schmidt dynamo hub. This is a serious headlight with whatīs called "standlight". The first thing I did when I had the light mounted was testing this "standlight", and I was not disappointed, rather impressed in fact. When spinning the wheel twenty times or so (with my hand when the bike still in the workstand) before letting it come to complete stop I notice that the extra drag thatīs supposed to be noticable is barely noticable. When sitting on the bike and peddalling this drag must be unoticable. The standlight was in funktion for several MINUTES after these twenty or so wheelspins!!! Pretty good standlight too (a LED light that switches on automatic when the halogen bulb stops shining). There is a funktion called "Senso", and this is a sensor which when activated turn the light on when it gets dark. Itīs so sensitive that when I mount my barbag the light turns on because the shadow under the bag . Good to see itīs working though . The lamp comes with a 2,4 watt bulb for use with a rear lamp, and since I donīt run a rearlight connected to the front light I had to change the bulb for a 3 watt one. The dynamo should always have 3 watt load or the bulb will burn out much faster. If I fit a dynamo powered rearlight instead of my battery one, the frontlamp will control the rearlight with the "Senso"-function. If I get a rear lamp I will make sure it has a standlight. I can recommend this product along whith the Schmidt dynohub to anyone in need of a quality light system. OK itīs a little pricy but compensate with great performance.

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Old 08-03-02, 11:23 AM
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Sounds like a nice setup Anders K! And that Rhyno rim is tremendously strong... at one point, Santana was spec'ing their 5-person tandem with the Rhyno.

As far as higher-powered units go, I'm sure it can be done, but the power has to come from somewhere, and on a dynamo, it comes from the rider. Taking a typical dual-beam halogen system that puts out about 35W, and considering that 746W = 1 horsepower, this is 0.05hp required to power the lights, assuming perfect efficiency. Maybe a single 12W beam would be a good compromise, if they plan to implement a high-output version.
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Old 08-03-02, 12:53 PM
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I dont see why a road rider would need more than the output of a 6v 3watt system. I find that I can ride along unlighted tracks and illuminate up to 30m ahead. People often comment how bright the system is.

If you do need extra illumination, then a mixture of 6v/3w generator and a battery spotlight may be a better combination.

In a couple of years we should be able to buy small methanol fuel-cells to power lighting systems. Although the technology is well established, no-one is really making them is large numbers yet.
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