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moving lights etc from bike to bike

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moving lights etc from bike to bike

Old 11-14-12, 01:54 PM
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noglider 
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moving lights etc from bike to bike

I have too many bikes, but I ride many of them regularly. I'm imagining ways of moving my lights (and perhaps other accessories such as computer and bell) from bike to bike.

Ideas:

Mount them on a metal tube and mount the tube to the bike using quick-disconnect hardware. I'm thinking a flashlight-to-gun mount might work well at this. The metal tube could be anything, perhaps an old handlebar.

My all-purpose bike (APB) has front and rear racks, and I'd like my headlight mounted at the front of the front rack. Using the gun mount, I'd probably want a short metal tube attached to the front rack. I'd also like the taillight to mount to the rear of the rear rack, so same idea there. Can you folks think of a good way to do this?

I bought some coaxial power connectors of the type that small electronics use for low voltage power. I have a hub dynamo on my APB, so I'm thinking of using three of these connections: one where the hub meets the fork, one where the headlight attaches, and another where the taillight attaches.

I'm also thinking I'd be better off with two headlights and maybe three taillights. If I space the headlights as far apart as is practicable, I might be a bit more visible. Drivers will see the two lights at the same level and maybe it will register in their vision in a way that a single light doesn't.

With three taillights, I could point the middle one straight back and the side two lights slightly out to their respective sides. I could have a combination of blinking and steady taillights, reaping the advantages of both types, if any.

I'm also trying to think of a way to make my dyno-hub-equipped front wheel portable among bikes. I saw Sheldon Brown had some sort of rod attached to his front axle and a light attached to the top of the rod. But with the ideas above, I could skip this. Each bike would have wiring -- an electrical system! -- that would welcome the dyno front wheel and also the headlight and taillight.

Thoughts?
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Old 11-14-12, 07:29 PM
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I'm doing something very similar myself and found that solution options were very dependent on the size/shape/mounting orientation of the lights and accessories themselves, and to some extent- the style of handlebars on the bikes. In my case what was to be mounted and moved was picked specifically to facilitate this kind of thing and simplify battery management. No everyone has a simplified situation like that to work with.

My simplest solution just uses accessory clamps to add a length of handlebar below and in front of the original. From there moving all or part of what's on another bike is fast and straightforward, but the initial setup took a bit of work because bar space and cable runs had all been minimized and real estate was pretty scarce.

It would probably help if you posted the specifics about your bikes and the accessories you have in mind.
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Old 11-14-12, 09:59 PM
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While I see that you want to make a whole array of lights portable, maybe the best thing is to keep it simple. I have 2 high-lumen self contained headlights that I move around from bike to bike, one at a time, with only one of them easily mounted to the thicker bars on my main road bike. It's pretty simple with a self-contained light. For taillights I have 2 PB SuperFlash and 2 Chinese knock-offs of them. I have 3 of the 4 mounts, one came off and got lost, plus the seat wedge bag has a loop and I have 2 mounts for that, so that's 5 different mounts. There are 6 bikes in my family but the reality is only 2 are ever out at once at night, and that is rare. By keeping it to a single front and rear, I don't have that much to move around, and they all move easily.

Computers are a lot harder as they have more wiring, and even wireless models have mounts that you don't want to move. The bells should move easily enough, but I only have one and I NEVER use it even when it is on the bike I'm using. My voice is a lot louder and more emphatic than a little ding-ding. (yea, I know, I'm not legal that way in NYC.)

Moving a wheel with connectors sounds like more trouble than its worth.
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Old 11-14-12, 11:03 PM
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Commonalities? Handle bar?, seat post ?
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Old 11-15-12, 09:58 AM
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I take the other extreme. I figure a new bike is actually a new bike kit, which becomes rideable when all the other parts are added. So for each bike I have a couple rear blinkies and a headlight (although when I used big battery lights I'd share them), in addition to the usual computer, saddle, saddle bag, tube, tire irons, spare tube, etc.
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Old 11-15-12, 12:05 PM
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I'm a trained singer, and my voice saved me once in the last year. A van (with bad rearward visibility) was backing out onto the street, and I let out a huge yelp. The driver stopped and apologized to me and complimented me on my voice. But I can't use it for less urgent warnings. It gets worn out quickly. I tried it when going down 7th Ave in Manhattan, and I became hoarse quickly.

Thanks for your points, folks. I will consider them. I really like dynamo lights better than battery lights for their reliability and lower maintenance. Also, because of German laws that regulate bike lights, the quality of the optics on dynamo lights is excellent. My insistence on using dynamo lights makes this experiment tricky. Maybe I'll see if I can drive my dynamo lights with lithium ion batteries on some bikes. LiIon batteries normally put out 3.7 volts (right?), and I think dynamo lights are rated at 6 volts. What is likely to happen if I under drive a light like that?

My bikes vary a lot, which will also make it difficult. I have an old English 3-speed with North Road handlebars, i.e. very twisty. One of my all purpose bikes has all-rounder bars which are almost straight but have rise and sweep bends. And I have two bikes with drop racing bars, one of them being my main APB mentioned above, a Bianchi Volpe from the early or mid 90's. Some bikes have racks, and some don't! Maybe I'll clamp small rack substitutes on the saddles of the bikes that have no racks.

I'm OK with not including the 3-speed in this experiment, and perhaps my go-fast racing bike, too. I haven't decided the scope of the experiment yet. I guess it will evolve as it proceeds. I'm willing to leave computers out, and I probably will, too.

Burton, what kinds of clamps do you use? Links and pictures would help.
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Old 11-15-12, 02:21 PM
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
......

Thanks for your points, folks. I will consider them. I really like dynamo lights better than battery lights for their reliability and lower maintenance. Also, because of German laws that regulate bike lights, the quality of the optics on dynamo lights is excellent. My insistence on using dynamo lights makes this experiment tricky. Maybe I'll see if I can drive my dynamo lights with lithium ion batteries on some bikes. LiIon batteries normally put out 3.7 volts (right?), and I think dynamo lights are rated at 6 volts. What is likely to happen if I under drive a light like that? .....

Burton, what kinds of clamps do you use? Links and pictures would help.

The clamps are pretty standard clamps for mounting accessory bars and are available from a variety of manufactures in both nylon and alloy versions. An example would be this one : https://problemsolversbike.com/produc...ccessory_mount

There are a couple examples of those on this thread: https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...project-part-1

Can't give you a fast answer on your lights. The AC/DC issue is really the problem. Your lights were probably designed to handle an AC input only and wouldn't know what to do with a DC input. And since you happen to like the cut-off in the generator driven lights (something thats really missing on most bike lights) I 'd personally suggest you stick with them.
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