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Brightest flashing headlight available?...suggestions?

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Brightest flashing headlight available?...suggestions?

Old 11-03-19, 11:48 PM
  #26  
laternser
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Originally Posted by bpcyclist View Post
.... (material removed) ...........

You just cannot believe how difficult it is to see when you combine the wet with the dark. Cars have trouble seeing. It is bad.
....... (material removed) .........

When you combine these two issues--poor, unpredictable road surface conditions and abundant, dangerous debris on the roadway plus the insane difficulty of seeing at night with so much water coating every surface--well, it's easy to see, riding a bicycle can quickly become extremely dangerous.
........ (material removed ) ........

... a single, good 750-lumen headlight is totally inadequate to ensure rider safety in such conditions.

.........(material removed) .........

As a result, I actually employ three headlights now on my setup. One 1100-lumen Cygolite on my helmet, one 1000-lumen Ceco (which I just love) on my left bar, and one 1300-lumen, 3-LED Cygolite on my right bar.

.......(material removed) ..........
So, there you go. One person's experience on why having more than just a single good headlight, for them, seems to improve safety. Now, a final caveat. In a former life I used to sort of take care of people who had gotten in car crashes. Motorcycle accidents. Biking mishaps.


.....(material removed)
1) Bpcyclist combines extensive experience riding in a rainy climate (Seattle / Portland) and vividly describes the hazards we all pass through routinely without thinking. Without even noting them other than to swerve.

2) Bpcyclist offers a solution that is based on having multiple levels of light which he creates by using multiple sources and explains why it works and documents why you need it; why it increases survival chances. Any person ever riding a bicycle can recognize the truth in his assertions. Yes, you can just slow down... that only saves you from some of the issues ... while leaving you on the street longer and increasing the duration of your exposure. Plus slower means cars come up faster and have less time to react.

3) Bpcyclist offers his knowledge and experience gained from actually encountering actual human test subjects post trauma and actually meeting their now 'special' needs. This gives him heightened awareness ... an outlier as he put it ... of the life changing or life ending result of being on the street (whether in car, motorcycle, or bicycle). The body is fragile. My brother survive 20 years in suffering from being rear ended. Do you ever hear people say "Listen to those with experience." That is how soldiers survive combat until they gain experience. Listen and learn from those that have gone before. The elusive goal of humans is to not have to learn the hard way.

I thank this poster. I intend to follow his advice as best I can. I do ride on ice and snow ... studded tires ... 296 studs per wheel. I have ridden in the worst blizzards ... past automobiles stranded ... for 10 hours at a time. Got stuck in one in the dark at 10F without a working light. Luckily snow is reflective. I have ridden in the dark without lights. I just get off the road when vehicles come ... where I cycle there are very few vehicles. I often just walked in the grass off the road. I knew it was stupid (but always a big blinker on the back (4"x6")).

I will find a way to emulate him. Hope his truthful reminder and ripples of knowledge make life safer for me. Have to laugh about being an outlier. I ride often with a full size slow moving vehicle reflector. Sometimes been shamed out of using it in the past. Partial outlier here perhaps.

Probably the end result is more riding in adverse conditions over longer distances.

Thank you. Salute!

P.S. Maybe I will try some alternative thinking for low light situations. Put my front rack to use.
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Old 11-05-19, 01:56 PM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by bpcyclist View Post
[...] Avoiding debris/road surface hazards as close to 100% of the time as possible for me required more than a single 750-lumen light I found.
[...] In my fairly abundant experience and just personally in my opinion for me, a single, good 750-lumen headlight is totally inadequate to ensure rider safety in such conditions. Just my take.[...]
I disagree here. If you have a proper light, which puts 750 lms on the road (and not in the sky like the lights you use), that is sufficient to travel fast and see obstacles early enough. i am talking about glarefree (or StVZO approved) lights, which have beams similar to a (proper) car low beam. Unfortunately these lights are not really cheap.. Cheapest i know is the Lumintop B01, albeit it has a bit narrow beam pattern. A bit more expensive is the B&M Ixon Space, followed by the Outbound Lighting Road Edition, then comes the Supernova M99 Series and the Lupine SL(F).

I don't bike as consequently as the bpcyclist, but i commute to work quite often by bike, also in autumn with lots of leaves, debris and wet conditions. My SL-F with 850 lm in dipped beam is doing pretty well in these conditions.

Here are some beamshots of the Ixon Space, Outbound Focal Road and the Lupine SL-F, and
here are some beamshots of the Supernova M99 Mini Pro25 vs the Lupine SL-F

For the supernova M99 Mini Pro 25 see also here.
With all these lights you can easily see 50-60 m in dipped mode on the road without having to worry about blinding oncoming traffic (i have been participating in the first two beam shots and own the OL Road and the Lupine SL-F)

Regarding the OP: The Outbound has also a 400 lm flashing mode without blinding everyone (at least if the road version is used).


Originally Posted by tomtomtom123 View Post
The best way to prevent blinding of oncoming traffic is to point the light below the height of where the light is mounted. I see lots of other cyclists pointing them straight ahead which sometimes blinds me to a point where I have to slow to a stop because I can't see where I'm going.
...Also some places do not allow bicycles to have blinking lights because they may cause confusion with turn signals or cause distractions.
The best war is to use glarefree lights, shown above.
The real issue with blinking light is: if a car driver (or a biker or a pedestrian) sees a blinking moving light, it is hard for him to estimate the distance to the light source. if you want a blike, use an additional light in constant mode. for your own safety.


Originally Posted by Gadgetech View Post
Im new/just getting into road biking and havent ever used a light on a bicycle, hence my question. Its a generally accepted idea, in the motorcycling world, that yellow lights (selective yellow specifically) are more noticeable than a bright white light. Is a yellow light a thing with bicycles? Granted, not for seeing at night, but being noticed during the day.
The warmer (i.e. the more towards) yellow the light, the easier the lights are on the eyes. However most glarefree bike lights use automotive LED chips, which are more on the neutral too cool white side. Unfortunately. The Outbound light is out-the-front more towards the neutral to warmer side.

Last edited by polyphrast; 11-05-19 at 02:23 PM.
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Old 11-05-19, 02:06 PM
  #28  
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"similar to a (proper) car low beam" is poor logic. Out on my bicycle I do not have a tempered glass windshield, a pressed steel cage or any of numerous other safety features, in front and around my body.

Last year I narrowly avoided being killed or grievously injured due to a snapped off utility pole suspended by it's lines at head height directly in the middle of a downhill bike lane. Had I been using a StVZO light I would have run into it at ~30 miles an hour. Thankfully I had a helmet mounted light that illuminated the pole a few seconds before my regular flashlight rack mounted light did and I was able to stop before impact.

Think about where your light goes, where your head goes and if StVZO lights are for you. I used to use a compliant model on my commuter, never again.
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Old 11-05-19, 02:38 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by Spoonrobot View Post
"similar to a (proper) car low beam" is poor logic. Out on my bicycle I do not have a tempered glass windshield, a pressed steel cage or any of numerous other safety features, in front and around my body.

Last year I narrowly avoided being killed or grievously injured due to a snapped off utility pole suspended by it's lines at head height directly in the middle of a downhill bike lane. Had I been using a StVZO light I would have run into it at ~30 miles an hour. Thankfully I had a helmet mounted light that illuminated the pole a few seconds before my regular flashlight rack mounted light did and I was able to stop before impact.

Think about where your light goes, where your head goes and if StVZO lights are for you. I used to use a compliant model on my commuter, never again.
That it is of course a pretty bad and dangerous situation and i am sorry that you had to encounter this. I know bad bike lanes with potholes and cracks, but at least i never encountered such a thing on bike lanes in germany (and your experience is the first time i ever have heard of such an issue). With my SL-F i have an additional switchable high beam which illuminates everything up to 10-12 ft high, and i use it regularly if there is no oncoming traffic.

And no, that is not poor logic, because on roads it isn't intended either to have obstacles hanging at the drivers head height. The point is was trying to make and which you don't seem to get: to see potholes and obstacles ON the road, you don't need more than 750 lm directed ON the road (shaped like a proper car low beam). Obstacles at the height of your head is a different issue, one which was not adresses by bpcyclist. And i was not talking about the dynamo powered ones or the normal StVZO lights with <300 lm on the road (i have used plenty of these as well), i was talking about high powered lights with 500 - 1000 lm low beam.

Were i concered about obstacles at head height, i'd use an additional helmet light with a more spotty optic in addion to the glare free lights mentioned above ( i have one, i just don't use it on road/ on bike lanes), since you use anyway two lights.

Last edited by polyphrast; 11-05-19 at 03:04 PM.
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Old 11-05-19, 03:05 PM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by polyphrast View Post
I disagree here. If you have a proper light, which puts 750 lms on the road (and not in the sky like the lights you use), that is sufficient to travel fast and see obstacles early enough. i am talking about glarefree (or StVZO approved) lights, which have beams similar to a (proper) car low beam. Unfortunately these lights are not really cheap.. Cheapest i know is the Lumintop B01, albeit it has a bit narrow beam pattern. A bit more expensive is the B&M Ixon Space, followed by the Outbound Lighting Road Edition, then comes the Supernova M99 Series and the Lupine SL(F).

I don't bike as consequently as the bpcyclist, but i commute to work quite often by bike, also in autumn with lots of leaves, debris and wet conditions. My SL-F with 850 lm in dipped beam is doing pretty well in these conditions.

Here are some beamshots of the Ixon Space, Outbound Focal Road and the Lupine SL-F, and
here are some beamshots of the Supernova M99 Mini Pro25 vs the Lupine SL-F

For the supernova M99 Mini Pro 25 see also here.
With all these lights you can easily see 50-60 m in dipped mode on the road without having to worry about blinding oncoming traffic (i have been participating in the first two beam shots and own the OL Road and the Lupine SL-F)

Regarding the OP: The Outbound has also a 400 lm flashing mode without blinding everyone (at least if the road version is used).



The best war is to use glarefree lights, shown above.
The real issue with blinking light is: if a car driver (or a biker or a pedestrian) sees a blinking moving light, it is hard for him to estimate the distance to the light source. if you want a blike, use an additional light in constant mode. for your own safety.



The warmer (i.e. the more towards) yellow the light, the easier the lights are on the eyes. However most glarefree bike lights use automotive LED chips, which are more on the neutral too cool white side. Unfortunately. The Outbound light is out-the-front more towards the neutral to warmer side.
I'm sure I must be confused, but you have never ridden with me here and I have not been to your wonderful country in several years. I do love Munchen, though. In any event, you have not, to the best of my knowledge, ever seen my bike and so you are unaware of precisely how and where my lights are aimed. They are not aimed "...in the sky..." as you for some reason suggest. They are pointed at the road. I have a system that works well for me where I reside. Are you suggesting that I am riding around in a busy city of a bit less than 3 million people firing off my 1300-lumen source at random drivers' eyes? That wouldn't be very thoughtful of me. Why would I want to be angering drivers and having them constantly flash their brights at me? That would just add more stress to what is already a fairly stressful experience riding in the city.

My primary concern is my own safety. Other people have approaches and systems that work for them where they reside. We all have our own way. I enjoyed looking at the photos of some the the lights you mentioned on that other forum. A couple of them definitely got my interest. Clearly, there are a number of good manufacturers worldwide and that is good for us. Competition is important. Hopefully, it will continue to push light makers to develop better and better lights for us, improving safety for everyone. Have fun out there. And definitely--be safe.
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Old 11-05-19, 08:52 PM
  #31  
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Ugh - Here goes the debate again. Maybe we need two separate threads so we can all get along! One for the StVZO fans and one for the non StVZO.

I personally am a fan of the glare-free StVZO which can now be purchased from many sources (mostly imported) and with very good light output levels and for very reasonable prices (thank you Banggood). I like them because I find they do not blind oncoming cars or bikes, and also PRESERVE MY NIGHT VISION so I can fairly well see things above the horizontal cutoff. I have found that with the round flashlight type lights they overilluminate right in front of me which makes my pupils constrict so really that is all I can see. With my shaped beam (even illumination) headlights I retain pretty good night vision out of the "cone" of light in front of me and I can see signs, overhead hazards, etc. I find this a nice balance and with my improved night vision I find I am far more comfortable on longer night rides where I can see well all around me, and not at the expense of everyone else.

But that is just me and I am not asking anyone else change their mind. I know on this topic folks are already pretty well entrenched in their ideas of what is right.

But... If you are researching this topic with an open mind, I suggest you try out a proper StVZO headlight and see what you think. And try setting up a round beam light at normal use angle and approach it in the dark from the other side as if you were an oncoming car and see if you are confortable with a 3,000 pound vehicle traveling toward you at 45 MPH with this view of the road ahead...

Here is an economical 650 lumen StVZO light for example that is less than $15. I find the beam could be a bit wider tough and have considered using two spread a bit to the left and right, both on the medium setting. https://usa.banggood.com/XANES-SFL12...r_warehouse=CN

Last edited by dwmckee; 11-05-19 at 09:07 PM.
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Old 11-05-19, 09:00 PM
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Question

Originally Posted by bpcyclist View Post
I actually employ three headlights now on my setup. One 1100-lumen Cygolite on my helmet, one 1000-lumen Ceco (which I just love) on my left bar, and one 1300-lumen, 3-LED Cygolite on my right bar. Won't go into how I aim all these for maximum efficacy and to minimize annoyance to other people and cars, but it's doable. I ride every day unless there's ice. .
I am just curious, have you ever propped your bike up at night with the lights on and stepped back 50 yards or so to see what your view to an oncoming motorist looks like?
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Old 11-06-19, 03:51 AM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by dwmckee View Post
I am just curious, have you ever propped your bike up at night with the lights on and stepped back 50 yards or so to see what your view to an oncoming motorist looks like?
Thank you for suggesting that. I took the bike down by the river in front of my place where there is little lighting and turned on the Cygolite Trion 1300 at a claimed 1300 lumens and the Ceco F1000 at a claim of 1000 and pointed them just as I do when I ride, down toward the pavement.. Then I hiked about twenty yards and took a look. They are very bright. There is no doubt--those lights are very bright. They get your attention. You are not going to miss them, even if you aren't looking directly at them. But at least for me, I did not feel like my eyes were struggling to cope with it. It was more like, wow, that's bright. Huh. It was not like--turn those damn things off! Anyway, then I walked to about fifty yards or so. Looked again. Still quite bright, really, but obviously a bit less pronounced than at the closer position. I obviously wasn't able to include my helmet light, since it goes on me and I can't take a look at me from fifty yards away from me. That said, I do have another basically 1000-lumen source running with those other two and so, it is definitely going to be brighter with it in the mix.

So, I went and did a bunch of reading about this StVZO light uh, I guess, situation, for lack of a better term. I found it quite interesting. And I do like the concept, theoretically. But my fear is that cutting off the top of the beam(s) may increase the risk of not only something weird and disastrous happening, as almost just happened to the very fortunate @Spoonrobot, but also just more mundane incidents and injuries. For example, where I often ride in my city, the streets are lined with very old oak, maple, and black walnut trees. It's fair to say they are not exactly the best maintained trees in the world. My head is on a swivel, but in the dark, my head is most of the time searching for road hazards ahead of me, especially this time of year when there is so much crap on the pavement. As such, I sometimes miss a wayward tree branch or, worse, limb and take one to the head. Maybe I'm an an idiot. In any case, I do avoid virtually all these limbs because I usually see them. My fear with just an StVZO system on-board, is that I would miss more of these hazards and potentially be seriously injured or killed. So that's a concern.

All that being said, because so many of you are so passionate in endorsing StVZO devices, I am going to order a good one today and see what happens. I will report back. And finally one last thing. Although I am a physician by training (retired), my work ended up being the development of lasers and LED systems for medical applications. Long story. I tell you this because I do bring a lot of biases and opinions about all things light to this current discussion based on my years doing what I did. I have no doubt some of those are playing a role in how I approach lighting for my bike. It can't be helped. We are products of our experiences. My primary motivation, whether I am getting ready to go for a 60-miler in the dark, like I am in a couple hours, or when I was about to submit something to the FDA, that overarching priority is/was always safety. FWIW. Safety is what I am about.
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Old 11-06-19, 09:54 AM
  #34  
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This discussion of bright lights and Lumens made me curious how many Lumens I had on a motorcycle that I used to drive at night on the highway in rural areas where there was no additional light from street lights. A google search suggested that my 55 watt low beam H4 bulb likely produced 1,100 to 1,500 Lumens. High beam at 60 or 65 watts would have been a bit more.

Would I have liked to have had more light on the highway at night at highway speeds? Yeah. But that aftermarket Halogen light I was using was a massive improvement over the stock incandescent light that came on the bike, so I was pretty happy with the 1,100 to 1,500 Lumens at highway speeds.

Comparing that to riding a bicycle at night, even down hills you are unlikley to exceed 25 mph. This does put the desire for massive numbers of Lumens into perspective.
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Old 11-06-19, 12:24 PM
  #35  
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Keep in mind that bulb (or dome I suppose for LED) lumens and OTF lumens are still entangled. One poster seeking 1000 lumens may actually be creating his perception of need from a 700 lumen light rated by bulb lumens that is actually putting 450 lumens out the front. So 1000 lumens would make sense given that it's only 650 OTF lumens. Generally it was considered that OTF lumens were 65% of bulb lumens as light is lost to reflector inefficiencies and the shape of the bulb/LED itself. It my short refresher I did not see any significant updates to this figure but most data is 5-10 years old at this point so I may be incorrect.

And that's even disregarding the bin rating of the LED, often the marketing will claim the brightest most luminous bin when reality is a much lower bin with significantly less performance +/-10% was not unusual for early CREE LEDs. Off-brand lights are notorious for this, lights that claim many thousands of lumens but only output a few hundred are legion on internet sales sites.

My average speed at night is right around 15-16 miles an hour, with an average of 50-60 feet of elevation a mile. Obviously I spend a considerable amount of time above 25 mph. I've been happy with 250 lumens in dry weather, much prefer 500 when the road is wet. However through talking with other riders I've learned that night vision varies greatly and such does the requests for a brightness levels in lights.
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Old 11-06-19, 01:18 PM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by bpcyclist View Post
Are you suggesting that I am riding around in a busy city of a bit less than 3 million people firing off my 1300-lumen source at random drivers' eyes?
Never meant anything like this. A just wanted to point out the issue of beam pattern design (which i didn't do well..)

Originally Posted by dwmckee View Post
Ugh - Here goes the debate again. Maybe we need two separate threads so we can all get along! One for the StVZO fans and one for the non StVZO.
sorry for that, that was not my intention. In the states and in canada there is no law requiring glarefree lights on bikes, so people can use whatever they want, and i don't care.

The point i was trying to make is that lumen numbers alone doesn't help, it's mostly a matter of light distribution. And classical conical lights put imo a lot of light where it is not necessarily needed.
I.e. an example for a lamp which is not glarefree but puts the light only where needed, is the Outbound Lighting Focal Trail. Here's a test of a 10 MTB lights, everyone with conical optics except for the OL Trail. You can see the difference in the beam shots there, and it's written there "Another way this light stood out was there wasn't any wasted light above the riders' sightline, allowing all lumens to be utilized for full send". (Of course that lamp has a very wide beam pattern, which is not to everyones likes)

Originally Posted by dwmckee View Post
I personally am a fan of the glare-free StVZO which can now be purchased from many sources (mostly imported) and with very good light output levels and for very reasonable prices (thank you Banggood). I like them because I find they do not blind oncoming cars or bikes, and also PRESERVE MY NIGHT VISION so I can fairly well see things above the horizontal cutoff. I have found that with the round flashlight type lights they overilluminate right in front of me which makes my pupils constrict so really that is all I can see. With my shaped beam (even illumination) headlights I retain pretty good night vision out of the "cone" of light in front of me and I can see signs, overhead hazards, etc.
That is a good point as well. But even the best offical StVZO lights put a lot of light above the cutoff. Not massive, but there is enough stray light to illuminate things at head height. Not 20 m in advance, but a few meters in advance, enough for pulling down your head.

Originally Posted by dwmckee View Post
Here is an economical 650 lumen StVZO light for example that is less than $15. I find the beam could be a bit wider tough and have considered using two spread a bit to the left and right, both on the medium setting.
Interesting light! Could you do me a favor and do a wall shot, like this one (www.instagram.com/p/BlJAkCShZNT) (you might have to reduce the ISO number and/or the exposure time...)? It would help me to get a feeling how glarefree and well designed the reflector is.

Originally Posted by Spoonrobot View Post
Keep in mind that bulb (or dome I suppose for LED) lumens and OTF lumens are still entangled.
True thing. For the Lupine (up to 1000 lm dipped) and the B&M Ixon Space (500 lm) the numbers are measured OTF Lumens.

Last edited by polyphrast; 11-08-19 at 06:28 AM.
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Old 11-06-19, 01:26 PM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
Yes, that's pretty anti-social behavior, and I see it a fair bit on the MUP I take frequently. I guess they figure if the car driver notices you, it's good enough. Well, gee, I'm sure if I ripped the driver out of his car and punched him in the face, he would notice me that way, too, but that doesn't make it a good idea. Nor are those super bright lights necessary on a bike and pedestrian path.
I agree, and blinking headlights are completely pointless on the MUP. It's more common than not, though.

I think a lot of arguments arise from the differences in what people imagine when we talk about this. I've had a (ubiquitous LED, not super-bright) headlight on dim, pointed down (10-15 feet ahead) and to the right, and still had someone yell about it. Someone without *any* headlight I might add. So there's that whole range of what we imagine as "blinding riders" or drivers.
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Old 11-06-19, 03:52 PM
  #38  
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Yes, I notice different people have different sensitivity levels. I find it hard NOT to look at lights that are bothering me. It would be so nice if I could look away easily, but it's hard.
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Old 11-07-19, 09:38 PM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by bpcyclist View Post
Thank you for suggesting that. I took the bike down by the river in front of my place where there is little lighting and turned on the Cygolite Trion 1300 at a claimed 1300 lumens and the Ceco F1000 at a claim of 1000 and pointed them just as I do when I ride, down toward the pavement.. Then I hiked about twenty yards and took a look. They are very bright. There is no doubt--those lights are very bright. They get your attention. You are not going to miss them, even if you aren't looking directly at them. But at least for me, I did not feel like my eyes were struggling to cope with it. It was more like, wow, that's bright. Huh. It was not like--turn those damn things off! Anyway, then I walked to about fifty yards or so. Looked again. Still quite bright, really, but obviously a bit less pronounced than at the closer position. I obviously wasn't able to include my helmet light, since it goes on me and I can't take a look at me from fifty yards away from me. That said, I do have another basically 1000-lumen source running with those other two and so, it is definitely going to be brighter with it in the mix.

So, I went and did a bunch of reading about this StVZO light uh, I guess, situation, for lack of a better term. I found it quite interesting. And I do like the concept, theoretically. But my fear is that cutting off the top of the beam(s) may increase the risk of not only something weird and disastrous happening, as almost just happened to the very fortunate @Spoonrobot, but also just more mundane incidents and injuries. For example, where I often ride in my city, the streets are lined with very old oak, maple, and black walnut trees. It's fair to say they are not exactly the best maintained trees in the world. My head is on a swivel, but in the dark, my head is most of the time searching for road hazards ahead of me, especially this time of year when there is so much crap on the pavement. As such, I sometimes miss a wayward tree branch or, worse, limb and take one to the head. Maybe I'm an an idiot. In any case, I do avoid virtually all these limbs because I usually see them. My fear with just an StVZO system on-board, is that I would miss more of these hazards and potentially be seriously injured or killed. So that's a concern.

All that being said, because so many of you are so passionate in endorsing StVZO devices, I am going to order a good one today and see what happens. I will report back. And finally one last thing. Although I am a physician by training (retired), my work ended up being the development of lasers and LED systems for medical applications. Long story. I tell you this because I do bring a lot of biases and opinions about all things light to this current discussion based on my years doing what I did. I have no doubt some of those are playing a role in how I approach lighting for my bike. It can't be helped. We are products of our experiences. My primary motivation, whether I am getting ready to go for a 60-miler in the dark, like I am in a couple hours, or when I was about to submit something to the FDA, that overarching priority is/was always safety. FWIW. Safety is what I am about.
Cool. I'd be very interested in your final opinion. The light I posted above is a fairly cheap one and there are much better ones available. The better ones tend to throw more light at the top of the beam pattern to better illuminate distant road surfaces so you wind up with an even road illumination far and near. Car headlights do the same. I have an Edelux II (battery powered) that I use on a touring bike, and the Specialized Flux Expret is a pretty good one too. As said in another post, there is still some spill on objects above the cutoff to help with seeing signs, etc. Some folks also use these lights with a regular round ~400 lumen light aimed more straight ahead for illuminating signs too without overly blinding motorists.

I used to ues max output round lights too before I went to StVZOs and I have to tell you it is "night and day" difference to have less light better aimed and much improved night vision to be able to look around and still ssee stuff outside the old light cone. Way better, especially if you are riding a longer ride at night. You feel way less stressed and enjoy the ride more... And see more actually...

Do some research on peterwhitecycles.com too for a lot of info and beam shots of a lot of the common better lights.

My father in law is an optical engineer and I have background in Physics so I can relate to your scientific approach...
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Old 11-07-19, 09:49 PM
  #40  
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Oh one more thing. With an StVZO light the height and angle of the light is pretty critical to get right. A touch too high or low and you do not get all of the benefit. See the instructions when mounting. Most are meant to be mounted just above the wheel and either centered or slightly to the left of center to get away from wheel spray. The Edelux can be leveled with a level pressed against the bezel of the light to get it exactly vertical for a starting point.
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Old 11-08-19, 04:58 AM
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Originally Posted by dwmckee View Post
Cool. I'd be very interested in your final opinion. The light I posted above is a fairly cheap one and there are much better ones available. The better ones tend to throw more light at the top of the beam pattern to better illuminate distant road surfaces so you wind up with an even road illumination far and near. Car headlights do the same. I have an Edelux II (battery powered) that I use on a touring bike, and the Specialized Flux Expret is a pretty good one too. As said in another post, there is still some spill on objects above the cutoff to help with seeing signs, etc. Some folks also use these lights with a regular round ~400 lumen light aimed more straight ahead for illuminating signs too without overly blinding motorists.

I used to ues max output round lights too before I went to StVZOs and I have to tell you it is "night and day" difference to have less light better aimed and much improved night vision to be able to look around and still ssee stuff outside the old light cone. Way better, especially if you are riding a longer ride at night. You feel way less stressed and enjoy the ride more... And see more actually...

Do some research on peterwhitecycles.com too for a lot of info and beam shots of a lot of the common better lights.

My father in law is an optical engineer and I have background in Physics so I can relate to your scientific approach...
"Night and day." That was awesome!
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Old 11-08-19, 02:22 PM
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Originally Posted by dwmckee View Post
Cool. I'd be very interested in your final opinion. The light I posted above is a fairly cheap one and there are much better ones available. The better ones tend to throw more light at the top of the beam pattern to better illuminate distant road surfaces so you wind up with an even road illumination far and near. Car headlights do the same. I have an Edelux II (battery powered) that I use on a touring bike, and the Specialized Flux Expret is a pretty good one too. As said in another post, there is still some spill on objects above the cutoff to help with seeing signs, etc. Some folks also use these lights with a regular round ~400 lumen light aimed more straight ahead for illuminating signs too without overly blinding motorists.

I used to ues max output round lights too before I went to StVZOs and I have to tell you it is "night and day" difference to have less light better aimed and much improved night vision to be able to look around and still ssee stuff outside the old light cone. Way better, especially if you are riding a longer ride at night. You feel way less stressed and enjoy the ride more... And see more actually...

Do some research on peterwhitecycles.com too for a lot of info and beam shots of a lot of the common better lights.

My father in law is an optical engineer and I have background in Physics so I can relate to your scientific approach...
So, I've had a pretty good look around the globe and it seems like Peter White Cycles are really charging a pretty significant premium for the Ixon Space, the one I think I want. They are around $270, where a couple of the places in Europe and the UK are more like 140 Euros. That is a pretty big difference. The German dealers appear not to ship to the USA, but some of the others didn't indicate they won't, so maybe they do. Is there anyplace else here in the States that might have a bit better pricing? Thanks!
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Old 11-08-19, 09:10 PM
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Here you go. Ixon Space. 113 Euro VAT free. Plus 20 Euro shipping to the US. Enter US destination to remove the VAT from the price.
https://www.bike24.com/p2193743.html
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Old 11-09-19, 12:51 AM
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Have you considered the Outbound lighting road edition? Absolutely glarefree, albeit not officially StVZO certified. The only downside: not self contained. Beam width is more or less the same for Ixon space and OL Road (i compared them). It costs 200 USD (140 USD the lamp head only) and has more output at 1500 Chiplumens, while the ixon space has 500 lm out the front (measured in an integrating sphere for a german bike magazine). Max lux value is a bit higher for the Ixon Space (150 lx) than for the OL Road (110 lx). The OL Road has a bit warmer light colour than the space. The OL Road has a flashing mode (not a crazy flash frequence, more a slower one), while the space does not have this (not stvzo compliant)
Since it is US made, buying/shipping is easy and fast for you.
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Old 11-09-19, 01:36 AM
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Originally Posted by tomtomtom123 View Post
Here you go. Ixon Space. 113 Euro VAT free. Plus 20 Euro shipping to the US. Enter US destination to remove the VAT from the price.
https://www.bike24.com/p2193743.html
I either missed that one or it didn't come up in my search parameters. Thank you very much.
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Old 11-09-19, 01:46 AM
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Originally Posted by polyphrast View Post
Have you considered the Outbound lighting road edition? Absolutely glarefree, albeit not officially StVZO certified. The only downside: not self contained. Beam width is more or less the same for Ixon space and OL Road (i compared them). It costs 200 USD (140 USD the lamp head only) and has more output at 1500 Chiplumens, while the ixon space has 500 lm out the front (measured in an integrating sphere for a german bike magazine). Max lux value is a bit higher for the Ixon Space (150 lx) than for the OL Road (110 lx). The OL Road has a bit warmer light colour than the space. The OL Road has a flashing mode (not a crazy flash frequence, more a slower one), while the space does not have this (not stvzo compliant)
Since it is US made, buying/shipping is easy and fast for you.
I definitely encountered them while reading about this topic, but thank you. I'll dig in some more. Are only German manufacturers able to receive the StVZO certification? Also, assuming their beam profiles must be fairly similar, I do not understand why the one with the higher lumen output is not also the one measuring higher in lux. Maybe I missed something, but that just doesn't make sense to me, unless the shape of the two beams is just totally different--which shouldn't be the case, as far as I understand it.. Any thoughts?
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Old 11-09-19, 02:35 AM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by bpcyclist View Post
I definitely encountered them while reading about this topic, but thank you. I'll dig in some more. Are only German manufacturers able to receive the StVZO certification? Also, assuming their beam profiles must be fairly similar, I do not understand why the one with the higher lumen output is not also the one measuring higher in lux. Maybe I missed something, but that just doesn't make sense to me, unless the shape of the two beams is just totally different--which shouldn't be the case, as far as I understand it.. Any thoughts?
StVZO certification can be obtained by non german manufacturers as well. Roxim as a taiwanese company does it, Hermanns as a company from Finland as well. I think many companies don't do it, because it costs money and you need to fulfill some requirements besides the light parameters. for Outbound probably costs and time were the issue, since the Focal Edition was his first lamp with the company.
Every german manufacturer does it, because lights, which are specifically designed to be mounted on a bike and miss the the StVZO certification, must not be sold in germany (otherwise the german dealer has to pay fines, non german dealers cannot be fined by the german authorities). I.e. the Sigma Buster series is in germany only available as helmet lights, not as lights with mount for the handlebar (the handle bar mounts be only be sold separately....).

lux and lumen: lux = lumen per area. So it is a matter of light distribution.

The lux value from the StVZO lamps is exactly one (1) point of measurement, with an area of (<65 x <65) mm. Only a tiny area (0.364 m on a vertical screen at 10m distance to the light source) has lux requirements depending on the brightest point of the lamp, it must be at least half of the max lux value. The rest of the defined measurement points is only a minium requirement (above 2 lux). For 150 lux, this 0.364m area needs a light output of >27 lumen (!) to fullfill requirements. The overall requirements are pretty low, and a lamp which fulfills only the required area is not very useful... Here is the StVZO requirement, google translate doesn't do the best job but i hope you can understand it (replace "lie" by "is located"...)

The Space does a pretty good job at light distribution (way better than the StVZO requirements), the OL Road is just differently distributed. So in theory the Space should illuminate the road in small area further ahead than the OL road. In reality this is not noticeable. I haven't done a white wall beam shot of the OL road and the Space at the same distance to the wall, but here is one of the Space at 150 lux, and here (instagram.com/p/BtLWSxLlQnU/ ; the other lamp there is an Ixon IQ) is one of the OL Road. What you can see from these wallshots is that the OL Road is a bight brigher 5 m in front of the bike than the space, whose beam is more homogenously perceived by eye.

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Old 11-09-19, 04:22 AM
  #48  
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The only time I would us a bright flashing light is during the day. My Niteride is plenty bright, but I keep it pointed down towards the ground at night to keep from blinding on-coming motorist. Otherwise, it can be incredibly bright and disorienting.
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Old 11-09-19, 09:41 AM
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Originally Posted by bpcyclist View Post
I either missed that one or it didn't come up in my search parameters. Thank you very much.
Just to compare, I have the Ixon IQ Premium for around 2-3 years, which is labeled as 80 Lux, while the Ixon Space is labeled 150 Lux. The IQ premium 80 Lux is already extremely bright and wide at the high setting. The low setting is 15 Lux and it's quite dim. The 2 packaging options for IQ Premium are either with battery and AC adapter charger or BYOB. I chose BYOB because there is no USB charging. The NiMH batteries that I supplied myself only last at most 2 hours on high 80 Lux, so I recharge them very frequently with some other separate charger. When the battery gets to low power, the light will automatically dim to the low 15 Lux setting.

The old handlebar holder was very shaky because of it's "spherical" floating rubber insert. The QR lever broke a month ago, so I bought the "newer" holder for $5, which is much more stable because they did away with the spherical insert, and the band clamps directly onto the handlebar. Instead, the upper top plate has a left/right swivel to give lateral adjustment. One annoying issue with the IQ Premium is the uneven light distribution. There are bright and dark zones in the beam. The upper center zone has an extremely bright spot and sometimes my eyes tend to unconsciously focus on it.

Generally, the IQ Premium is ok. Very bright and wide beam. But I wish it would have a more even light distribution without the bright spot, and it would be better if it had USB charging.

I have no experience with the Ixon Space, so I can't give any feedback on it. But it does have USB charging. The photos of the holder looks similar to the old "spherical" type that originally came with IQ Premium, but slightly different, so I don't know how its stability compares.
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Old 11-09-19, 10:05 AM
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
Nor are those super bright lights necessary on a bike and pedestrian path.
Interesting thought. I agree lots of light isnt necessary on a MUP/MUT. There are several I have rode a lot, combined -thousands of miles. Lots of them are no where near roads. Ive told other riders - during the daytime when they are on some of these trails - that "your lights are still on" as we pass, as if they forgot to turn them off. If I left my lights on and someone told me that Id be appreciative. Maybe I am an exception, but I like to conserve power in my internally powered Cygolite's so I have juice for when Im on the road - where I need the light, not trails.

The times Ive had issues with other people on MUP/MUT's it has been people tuned in to what their dogs are doing or their heads are burried in their cell phones. So I never thought a flashing light would do much anyway - I just yell at them from a decent distance to announce my presence and passage.

Although, I have never understood why when I yell out "passing on your left" people move to the left - across the whole trail right in front of me. Usually that happens with a spider web of dog leashes in the mix too.

In any event, seems to me to make more sense to leave the lights off on the trails. Even at night I just run enough head light to see where Im going. If trail conditions dictate more I use more.
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