Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Night Ride!!!

Old 12-27-05, 09:49 PM
  #1  
BillyBob
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Night Ride!!!

Over the summer, I pulling myself out of bed at 5 am to get in a ride before work. After a couple of days, I was hooked. It was great having energy during the day and knowing that my exercise was out of the way.

Fall came and I dedicated myself to the trainer and treadmill because I just couldn't roll out of bed and go exercise in the cold.

I got fat.

Tonight, I hit the road after the kids went to bed. It was great! I put in a 45 min ride up and down some big hills. It beats the heck out of exercising indoors.

I should sell my treadmill and trainer and buy gigawatts worth of lights. Right now, I am using a 10 watt halogen and cateye TL1000 tail light. I NEED MORE POWER!

Over the summer, I learned to use the cyclocross bike for the night rides with the 32mm tires. I figure I won't cry if I destroy my crappy bontrager wheels.

I have been going crazy trying to figure out how to attach more tail lights to my bike. I have a 2006 Lemond Poprad and I don't know how to attach a traditional rack to it. I was thinking of putting on a mountain bike rack just to have more mounting locations for lights.

Also, I am looking for recommendations for a 28 or preferably 32 mm tire with reflective sidewalls. Any suggestionss out there?

Other night riding tips are welcomed.
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Old 12-27-05, 10:38 PM
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Have you seen the IllumiLite clothing reflective clothing? If I rode more at night, I would seriously consider those. I'm also running a Cateye TL-1000, but I use an EL-300 at the front. When I do ride at night, it is in the city on lighted streets. I do wear bright jerseys day or night, but that's as far as I have gone so far.
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Old 12-27-05, 11:35 PM
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As Flatlander_48 recommends, I wear clothing with Illuminite stitching to make myself visable. I also use a rear flashing tailight and until recently was using 10W halogen lights. I've since upgraded to a Light in Motion HID light which not only dwarfs my old Halogen, but also seems to force drivers of automobiles to take notice. Its also lighter weight and lasts far longer than anything else I've used. Definitely worth the expense.
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Old 12-27-05, 11:37 PM
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I ride quite a bit at night now. The illuminite stuff rocks - I have their arm and leg warmers. I frequently wear them at night even when its not cold enough just for the extra visibility.
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Old 12-27-05, 11:50 PM
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Good idea on the illuminite. I need to get a cycling jacket anyhow. I am also thinking about getting some of those flashing LED ankle bands to wear.
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Old 12-28-05, 05:00 AM
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My father seems to think its a crime to ride in the dark! It s#!TS me to tears lol. I would love to do more night riding! What prices are you looking at for a really powerful set of lights?
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Old 12-28-05, 05:15 AM
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I do 20 miles at night. I just got back right now. Left late tonight to go out. Its safer around here to ride at night. I can see the cars coming at the crossing streets by looking for headlights. Very nice.
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Old 12-28-05, 05:28 AM
  #8  
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As far as tires go Vredestein make an interesting tire called the Prefect Moiree, http://www.vredestein.com/Fietsbande...FietsSoortID=2 with reflective sidewalls plus they have other tires with the reflective side walls as well. Its not a lightweight tire but its suitable for fast urban use.

Regards, Anthony
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Old 12-28-05, 06:42 AM
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Originally Posted by squeegy200
As Flatlander_48 recommends, I wear clothing with Illuminite stitching to make myself visable. I also use a rear flashing tailight and until recently was using 10W halogen lights. I've since upgraded to a Light in Motion HID light which not only dwarfs my old Halogen, but also seems to force drivers of automobiles to take notice. Its also lighter weight and lasts far longer than anything else I've used. Definitely worth the expense.
+1 on the Light in Motion, another +1 on the IllumiNITE. I upgraded to the ARC Li-ion Ultra recently after the MTB forum comparison article came out and after doing some looking around a bit on my own. No complaints whatsoever. As for the IllumiNITE, I highly recommend the helmet cover. I just wish that made a heavier jacket for winter riding, although I cannot seem to find the Xenon model. Here are some links to help you out:

> http://www.mtbr.com/spotlight/lightshootout/
> http://www.bikelights.com/Products/arc_liion_ultra.htm
> http://www.illuminite.com/Catalog/cycling.html
> http://www.night-gear.com/Search.bok?oem=illumiNITE

T
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Old 12-28-05, 09:45 AM
  #10  
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Originally Posted by macca123
My father seems to think its a crime to ride in the dark! It s#!TS me to tears lol. I would love to do more night riding! What prices are you looking at for a really powerful set of lights?
If you look at the lights sticky in the commuter section, the sky is the limit. In the short term, I will probably throw another 10 watt halogen on the front for around $100.00 I was thinking of aiming one up higher than the second. I am much more concerned about making myself more visible from the back and will put my money into a niterider taillight and/or more rigging to add more blinking lights back there.

Part of my strategy is to use a sturdy bike so I don't need to see every detail on the road.
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Old 12-28-05, 09:49 AM
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In a strange way I felt safer riding at night. Cars gave me plenty of room and waited if needed to pass me without honking or brushing me. I guess they were shocked to see me or more likely just weren't in a hurry.

When I rode in the morning, people would honk at me even if no one was in the oncoming lane. I think they were just upset that I was out riding and they were on their way to work. I was surprised because it was before 6am and very few cars are out.
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Old 12-28-05, 09:51 AM
  #12  
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Anthony,

Thank you for the tire recommendation. My local LBSs really don't have a wide selection of tires so I will have to mail order tires and recommendations are valuable.
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Old 12-28-05, 09:54 AM
  #13  
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Thomill,

Thanks for the links! The helment cover is another good idea.
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Old 12-28-05, 10:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Thomill
I just wish that made a heavier jacket for winter riding, although I cannot seem to find the Xenon model.
According to illuminite's web site, the Contravento is their winter cycling jacket. Have you seen it?
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Old 12-28-05, 11:06 AM
  #15  
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I just got a 13 watt HID system at BatterySpace.com that I am quite happy with. Can't wait to do a nighttime century one of these days with it. Can't believe how nice it is riding with enough light at night.
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Old 12-28-05, 11:23 AM
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I use a neat little light by Nite-Hawk called the Digital Emmitter.

http://www.nite-hawk.com/bikeemitter.html

I ride with some guys who have halogen and this thing is about as bright as a 10w halogen. It has a much bluer light though, and a longer run time (something like 9 hours on 4 AA batteries). There's another version called the Emmitter(same as digital emmitter just fewer power settings) and Nashbar had 'em for $45 a while back. Great little light - only bad thing is for some reason it wigs out my wireless computers. I have 2 and it messes with both of them.

For tail lights I have a clip on LED blinky on my helmet, one under my seat on my saddle bag, and a red flashing ankle band around my ankle. I also frequently wear the illuminite arm/leg warmers and a high-vis yellow decente vest. If they can't see me then they're freakin' blind and shouldn't be driving anyway.

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Old 12-28-05, 11:34 AM
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For rear lighting, I think it's important to have redundant lights in case one fails.
I like to use the Cateye TLD1000 and a Lightman xenon strobe - I get the strobes
at swps.net, it's a polic supply house.
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Old 12-28-05, 11:43 AM
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strapped to the helmet, I have a Nite Rider 15W that lets me blind oncoming drivers.
on the back pack, I have two flashing strips from ems.
on the bike, I have a small blinking red light bought at an lbs.

I think this is pretty much all you need in a suburban/city setting. I used to ride singletrack with just that 15W light at night.

Don't let the dark, cold, or rain stop you.
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Old 12-28-05, 11:47 AM
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Originally Posted by macca123
My father seems to think its a crime to ride in the dark! It s#!TS me to tears lol. I would love to do more night riding! What prices are you looking at for a really powerful set of lights?
how old are you?

Tell your dad that you are safe
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Old 12-28-05, 01:00 PM
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Originally Posted by BillyBob
According to illuminite's web site, the Contravento is their winter cycling jacket. Have you seen it?
Not yet, but thanks for the reference!

T
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Old 12-28-05, 02:55 PM
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I'm getting annoyed of riding in the cold and dark...

I am going to try and ride in the morning, the night is ticking me off
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Old 12-28-05, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Paul L.
I just got a 13 watt HID system at BatterySpace.com that I am quite happy with. Can't wait to do a nighttime century one of these days with it. Can't believe how nice it is riding with enough light at night.
This is an excellent source for batteries and lights if the price tag on the Designer lights is too much for your pocketbook. Betteryspace has an HID with Li-Ion bike light package for under $200!
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Old 12-28-05, 04:01 PM
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Originally Posted by macca123
My father seems to think its a crime to ride in the dark! It s#!TS me to tears lol. I would love to do more night riding! What prices are you looking at for a really powerful set of lights?
Just a tidbit. Here in Maryland, IT IS illegal to ride your bike at night without any lights. But yeah, to ban it completely without compromise would really be ridiculous.
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Old 12-28-05, 05:07 PM
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Originally Posted by EricDJ
I do 20 miles at night. I just got back right now. Left late tonight to go out. Its safer around here to ride at night. I can see the cars coming at the crossing streets by looking for headlights. Very nice.
Its easier to see them comming up from behind too.
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Old 12-28-05, 05:40 PM
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There are also those red lights that fit in the ends of your road bars. There are some taillights that attach to a battery pack with the front light and they seem to be the brightest.

If you really want to be noticed you can also get a lot of litewire. It is basically a small wire coated with phosphorescence and then a plastic coating in your color of choice over that. A small 2- AA battery pack attaches to it and lights the wire up. Get plenty and don't worry that it will be to bright. The wire is simular to wire in a light electrical coard so it is plenty flexible. You could tape it to all parts of your frame and light your frame up. I can tell you that pink is definatly brighter than orange as I have both colors. (pink for my daughter and orange for me) You could even attach some to the back of your jacket or camelback for extra visability. Here are a couple of eb sites with it so you can see what I am talking about.

However the cold cathode tube will make the ground below you even glow and you will be noticed with this more than anything else out there that I have ever seen! I have seen a couple of road bikes going by with them on and wow do they get noticed.

http://www.elwirecheap.com/index.html
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