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Helmet Light

Old 02-19-20, 02:03 PM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by polyphrast View Post
It is myth (which unfortunately too many cyclists believe), that lights with a conical beam pattern (i.e. lights without a cut-off) do not blind motorists (or other cyclists or pedestrians). I guess you never gave your light-setup to a friend and made a self test with respect to blinding, haven't you? There is a very solid and good reason why passing beams/dipped beams in car lights have a cut-off. It is near on impossible to adjust a conical beam shaped light in such a way that you don't blind others. and if you don't the first 4 m in front of your bike is heavily overexposed...

If this is a conical light, it is inevitable that it blinds others. Unless the light has a very narrow beam angle (say <10), but that'd make it mostly useless for cycling.


Did you mean that two lights make a cyclist better visible and help others to judge distance and speed? Or did you mean blinking lights helps others to judge the distance to the blinking light source? The latter is false. One needs a constant light source to be able to judge speed and distance. Blinkies only attract attention, but make it very hard for others to judge speed and distance of the blinking object.


That is usually true when trail-riding, but not necessarily when riding on streets, unless they are very curvy. A light for commuting on roads/bike paths is best mounted on the fork or bar and should have a cut-off.

List of possible cut-off lights with decent, usable output that helps to create respect from car drivers: Ravemen PR and CR series, Fenix BC25R and BC35R, Outbound Lighting Focal Road, Lupine SL, SL-F and the coming SL-X, Supernova M99 Series, B&M Ixon Space (and all the other german StVZO lights, i.e. lezyne has some pretty ok StVZO lights, but i don't know whether those are sold in the US/Canada)
Nah, that ain't the way it is in the real world. I'm not blinding motorists and they're not blinding me.

StVZO lights are essentially worthless for road riding.
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Old 02-19-20, 02:41 PM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by Spoonrobot View Post
Nah, that ain't the way it is in the real world. I'm not blinding motorists and they're not blinding me.

StVZO lights are essentially worthless for road riding.
This is a factually incorrect statement. STVZO lights are much safer and more pleasant for others approaching the rider, who are, in the actual, real world, frequently blinded by the very bright ones, such as those over 1000 lumens, commonplace now--everyone but yours, apparently--and far more considerate to others on the road or path. Unless your light is quite low-powered. Perhaps that is the explanation for your experience. Or perhaps, as I say, you are just completely unaware of your impact on others.
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Old 02-19-20, 02:52 PM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by Spoonrobot View Post
Nah, that ain't the way it is in the real world. I'm not blinding motorists and they're not blinding me.
Then you live in a different world than i do. Any conical beam pattern lamp will blind motorists. Of course a motorist will not blind you, because cars and (motor)bikes are forced by law to have passing beams with a cut-off:
1) US based automotive lightning regulations: FMVSS 108, (you'd have to search the text for the actual requirements, i don't know where that is written)
2) UN ECE automotive lighting regulations: UN ECE R149 (on page 31 of the pdf you find requirements for a passing beam, and page 78 you find the measurement screen)

Originally Posted by Spoonrobot View Post
StVZO lights are essentially worthless for road riding.
Contrary to you, I have tested all current high powered StVZO lights available on the market, and these a more than adequat for road riding. I do as well have typical "round beam shape" lights, they do more harm than good on a road, especially with oncoming traffic. You obviously haven't ever tried modern high powered StVZO lights.

Here's a bunch of exemplary (video)links for StVZO (or UN ECE R113) certified lights. Keep in mind that video/camera shots never really give justice to any lights, they are perceived even better in reality
a) Supernova: youtube.com/watch?v=RN_aGFhcnPo; review
b) Lupine 1) youtube.com/watch?v=bOCvVHNaZkw&t=4m25s 2) youtube.com/watch?v=LVVm4UTlkjg&t=2m00s 3) youtube.com/watch?v=sv0GLx7Z07A&t=13m25s
c) B&M Ixon Space youtube.com/watch?v=Uhv7WXj5xpA&t28m20s (dipped a bit low), beamshot on a MUP (optimum adjustment)
d) Outbound Lightning focal road (non StVZO certified but with suitable optics) youtube.com/watch?v=8hnms2k7Ti0

Last edited by polyphrast; 02-19-20 at 03:53 PM.
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Old 02-19-20, 09:25 PM
  #29  
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I've ridden in the country that requires stvzo lights. When riding on the bike path, there is a big difference when passing oncoming cyclists who are using compliant lights and those who buy imported non compliant lights from eBay or Amazon. Those who are using non compliant lights are extremely blinding and I have to stop and look away until they pass because I can't see anything in front of me.

Some of the compliant stvzo lights have surprisingly very wide beams. There are reviews on blogs making comparisons.
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Old 02-19-20, 10:00 PM
  #30  
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I know my Light & Motion Urban 500 appears brighter than it really is and has a lot of spill because I've heard drivers and pedestrians comment on how bright it is. Monday a guy loading his car trunk as I passed said he thought I was on a motorcycle because the light was so bright -- and that was on the medium setting, around 250 lumens, far dimmer than an actual motorcycle headlight. But he noticed the relative intensity of the center spotlight beam.

But in the US I'm more concerned about being noticed, not by being polite. Unless you've spent a lot of time cycling in the US, particularly in states where laws are very lax for drivers, you have no idea how indifferent and even hostile many drivers are toward pedestrians and cyclists.

Literally, the easiest way to get away with murder in the US is to run over a pedestrian or cyclist and claim "They came out of nowhere! I never saw them!" Unless there is contradictory evidence from witnesses, video, etc., most law enforcement agencies will accept driver statements at face value. If the news media report it at all, they'll mention whether the cyclist wore a helmet, or had functioning brakes. But they won't mention driver negligence or culpability.

I'll worry about my lights after the US changes from this paradigm that pits hostile and indifferent drivers against human lives.

And even with bright and flashing lights and hi-viz colors, that stuff works only if the drivers look or give a damn. I was nearly hit twice Monday, while running bright daytime lights, and wearing hi-viz colors. The first was an Amazon driver who never looked up while turning from a side road into my path. The second was a woman who looked directly at me, made eye contact, then pulled into my path anyway and shrugged indifferently when I yelled and cussed.

Same with the driver who struck me in 2018. She never even looked up from her phone when she turned into my path. The lights, etc., made zero difference. And even with a police witness she wasn't cited for recklessness or negligence.

That's pretty common here, and nothing will change until drivers are forced to change.

If anything, I'm inclined to get brighter and more annoying lights. I'll dim them and lower the beams for cyclists and pedestrians on the MUP. But not for drivers. Not until the laws change regarding training and personal liability for negligent drivers.
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Old 02-29-20, 07:17 PM
  #31  
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I don't care if you flip me off or swear at me. I am not a tough guy but have worked and commuted to the local prison for a long time. But YOU SAW ME right? So how is that a problem? My friends at work have told me I make a spectacle of myself and again, YOU SAW ME! My lights, safety vest and other reflective material seem to keep me seen on the road. I have had helmet lights, monkeylights, and bike lights. Right now I avoid helmet lights. Do what works for you. Be Well, Bluesfrog
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Old 02-29-20, 07:58 PM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by tomtomtom123 View Post
I've ridden in the country that requires stvzo lights. When riding on the bike path, there is a big difference when passing oncoming cyclists who are using compliant lights and those who buy imported non compliant lights from eBay or Amazon. Those who are using non compliant lights are extremely blinding and I have to stop and look away until they pass because I can't see anything in front of me.

Some of the compliant stvzo lights have surprisingly very wide beams. There are reviews on blogs making comparisons.
I had a Breezer commuter with dynamo-driven B&M lights with a proper cutoff, and loved it. I wish the American makers would adopt this standard.

My rechargable helmet-mounted L&M Vis Pro runs 600 lumens at full power, with a front white pulsing mode at 150 lumens. The rear red pulses at 25 lumens. I run the pulse mode in the city at all hours and it is plenty bright day and night. When I'm on the bikeway at night I run steady at 150 or 300 lumens (depending on conditions) to avoid blinding other bikers, and turn my head away when passing

The boys on this thread who are bragging 1000 lumens must be riding on the Autostrada or remote roads - I sure hope I don't come across them.
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Old 03-05-20, 02:15 AM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by BROOKLINEBIKER View Post
Hi VegasTriker,
I would be using the light to ride at night. I'm a bike commuter in an urban area and wish to avoid being run over. I want a blinking light because in my opinion they make one more visible. I'd been told 500 lumens was needed to really be visible but if I can do the job with less, then that would be fine. My budget for the light is under $80 US.
Maybe a blinking red light would be more visible. 500 lumen white light is rather bright one. Not to mention whether it cost more, but it might be bigger/heavier to make sure a big battery for long enough runtime, as well as the heat sink. Put it on helmet seems not good.
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Old 03-05-20, 08:48 AM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by Archwhorides View Post
I had a Breezer commuter with dynamo-driven B&M lights with a proper cutoff, and loved it. I wish the American makers would adopt this standard.

My rechargable helmet-mounted L&M Vis Pro runs 600 lumens at full power, with a front white pulsing mode at 150 lumens. The rear red pulses at 25 lumens. I run the pulse mode in the city at all hours and it is plenty bright day and night. When I'm on the bikeway at night I run steady at 150 or 300 lumens (depending on conditions) to avoid blinding other bikers, and turn my head away when passing

The boys on this thread who are bragging 1000 lumens must be riding on the Autostrada or remote roads - I sure hope I don't come across them.
The Outbound Lighting Road Edition is designed and manufactured in the USA. https://www.outboundlighting.com/pro...-road-edition/
By far the best of the many lights I own.
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Old 03-07-20, 10:10 AM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by bpcyclist View Post
The Outbound Lighting Road Edition is designed and manufactured in the USA. https://www.outboundlighting.com/pro...-road-edition/
By far the best of the many lights I own.
Spendy, but that looks like a great cut-off light! The run-times at lower output look absurdly long, I like that.
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Old 03-15-20, 07:46 PM
  #36  
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I didn't read all the posts, I got through the first two and started choking on the words so I stopped going any further.

Look ideally you should have two headlights, one rated for about 1,100 to 1,200 lumens that you will use in a lower mode of around 700 lumens, this light will be on steady. The reason for the more lumens comes a bigger battery which means on the middle setting it will run longer then getting a 700 lumen light and running it on high. Also 700 lumens is plenty bright for the street considering that cars only have 700 lumen headlights on dim and yet they go faster than a bike does without any problems over riding their lights, so if their not going over ride their 700 lumen light neither will you, so 700 is more than enough, then on really dark perhaps rainy nights you can turn it on high if needed; I rarely go off my mid level mode into high with my main light. Currently I think the best light for the money is the Ravemen PR1200 which puts out 1,200 lumens on high but again not usually necessary to run it that high. The PR1200 is a dual beam (one spot one diffused or wide beam) with automotive designed cut off beam so more of the lights energy is on the road and not wasting some on the trees. There are cheaper generic lights on Amazon for under $40 if money is tight, but with those the Chinese companies that make them way over rate their lumens and their battery life, also Chinese batteries don't last as long in cycles as the name brand light batteries will, so you are giving up quality but if money is tight these will work for at least a couple of years so you can save up money to buy a better light.

The second headlight needs to be smaller at around 400 lumens, this light will attach to your helmet and put on strobe mode, the strobe mode will catch the attention of a motorist pretty quickly; also since it's on your helmet you can aim the light at car windows who are setting at intersections etc to get their attention that you're there, and you can point it at street signs if needed. This light needs to be very small so it doesn't weigh your head down very much, I happen to like the Lezyne Hecto Drive 400XL, it puts out 400 lumens and its small and light weight, but Lezyne isn't offering that one any more instead they make the Hecto Drive 500XL, but I think they reclassified the Hecto 400XL as the Mini Drive 400XL, on daylight flash mode it will run about 7 hours vs 5 hours for the Hecto 500XL. These lights are very well made for the money, the Mini is only $30 vs $40 for the Hecto, I would go with the Mini, it works very good for me.
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Old 03-15-20, 11:01 PM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by greatscott View Post
I didn't read all the posts, I got through the first two and started choking on the words so I stopped going any further.

Look ideally you should have two headlights, one rated for about 1,100 to 1,200 lumens that you will use in a lower mode of around 700 lumens, this light will be on steady. The reason for the more lumens comes a bigger battery which means on the middle setting it will run longer then getting a 700 lumen light and running it on high. Also 700 lumens is plenty bright for the street considering that cars only have 700 lumen headlights on dim and yet they go faster than a bike does without any problems over riding their lights, so if their not going over ride their 700 lumen light neither will you, so 700 is more than enough, then on really dark perhaps rainy nights you can turn it on high if needed; I rarely go off my mid level mode into high with my main light. Currently I think the best light for the money is the Ravemen PR1200 which puts out 1,200 lumens on high but again not usually necessary to run it that high. The PR1200 is a dual beam (one spot one diffused or wide beam) with automotive designed cut off beam so more of the lights energy is on the road and not wasting some on the trees. There are cheaper generic lights on Amazon for under $40 if money is tight, but with those the Chinese companies that make them way over rate their lumens and their battery life, also Chinese batteries don't last as long in cycles as the name brand light batteries will, so you are giving up quality but if money is tight these will work for at least a couple of years so you can save up money to buy a better light.

The second headlight needs to be smaller at around 400 lumens, this light will attach to your helmet and put on strobe mode, the strobe mode will catch the attention of a motorist pretty quickly; also since it's on your helmet you can aim the light at car windows who are setting at intersections etc to get their attention that you're there, and you can point it at street signs if needed. This light needs to be very small so it doesn't weigh your head down very much, I happen to like the Lezyne Hecto Drive 400XL, it puts out 400 lumens and its small and light weight, but Lezyne isn't offering that one any more instead they make the Hecto Drive 500XL, but I think they reclassified the Hecto 400XL as the Mini Drive 400XL, on daylight flash mode it will run about 7 hours vs 5 hours for the Hecto 500XL. These lights are very well made for the money, the Mini is only $30 vs $40 for the Hecto, I would go with the Mini, it works very good for me.
I use a flashing forward-facing light only during daylight and at dusk/dawn. When it is fully dark, I always go with a continuous beam.
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Old 04-06-20, 11:30 AM
  #38  
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If part of your ride is through a park trail at night you'll need about 250 lumen wide beam.

My peeve with modern electrics is that all the controls is with one button. On the road, I forget how many times I have to push to get the setting I want. Sometimes I don't even find it as the ambient light sensor automatically overrides what I want.

All I really need are:
on/off
low (for urban neighbourhood)
low flashing
high wide beam (for unlit park trails)
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