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Who has lights on their bike?

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Who has lights on their bike?

Old 03-23-09, 06:44 PM
  #1  
island rider
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Who has lights on their bike?

I'm considering getting a head and tail light for nights when I get home early and want to get a few miles in on the road without getting dead. I envision this mainly for times when I will be coming back at dusk, not truly for "night riding." Just curious how many people have lights for this kind of purpose and what you might use.

I looked at the lighting/electronics forums, and know the plethora of options available, up to and including strapping 4-cell mag lights to every horizontal surface, but I am curious as to whether people use them and what they might use.
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Old 03-23-09, 06:51 PM
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I have a HID on my helmet, and a 4 led flasher on my seatpost. Haven't been hit by a car yet. In fact most cars coming from behind end up passing at a crawl because they have no idea WTF I am.
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Old 03-23-09, 06:57 PM
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for the rear Planet bike super flash (s)
that new kid on the block, which is a very powerful red flashlight.

for the front, a P7 or MC-E torch(es).
then you can also decorate yourself and your bike with prismatic reflective gear.
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Old 03-23-09, 07:07 PM
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If you're going to be riding at night, use lights. It's incredibly unsafe not to and also illegal.

Regardless of what headlight or taillight you choose, I recommend having a second, even if it's not nearly as bright, as backup just in case something happens to the primary light. For the taillight, that means always running two lights as you might not know your main light went out. While I run a very powerful HID headlight, my backup is a simple 5 LED light intended to get me home if for some unpredicted reason my HID's battery dies. I've had to use it a few times and been very happy to have it.

Also note that depending on what state you live in, a rear reflector may be a legal requirement. I have one mounted on my bike that gets a lot of night use and while I doubt it does much, if I ever had to deal with law enforcement while riding at night, it will make my life much easier to be meeting all of the local requirements.
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Old 03-23-09, 07:07 PM
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When I used to be stupid enough that I had to work, and could only ride afterwards, I used to keep this little red strobe that attaches to the seat tube for those times when I came back late. Available at any LBS.
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Old 03-23-09, 07:09 PM
  #6  
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Rowan bought me a Schmidt Dynamo front hub in 2006 ... it was my "engagement ring".

I've got a Lumotec light to go with it.
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Old 03-23-09, 07:13 PM
  #7  
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sweet sweet dynohubs, they're so neat.
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Old 03-23-09, 07:16 PM
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Minewt X2 Dual up front, and PB Superflash in the rear.
When commuting I have another Superflash on my bag.

You could probably get away with the new Minewt that charges via USB, run solid beam, and maybe a Knog Frog on blink, with a Superflash on the back. That's about $130 total, for a good deal of safety.

It's hard to overstate how important some semblance of noticeable lights are, especially when you're dealing with people who have either just woken up or are in a hurry to get home after a long wokr day.
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Old 03-23-09, 07:20 PM
  #9  
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I have a Planet Bike Superflash on the back of my bike. I've actually had motorists tell me the thing really helps make me stand out!
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Old 03-23-09, 07:20 PM
  #10  
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https://www.bikeforums.net/electronics-lighting-gadgets/
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Old 03-23-09, 07:25 PM
  #11  
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I have a Cateye TL LD1000 on the seat post and a generic Trek blinkie on the saddle bag.

On the front I have a 15W 6v Marwi NightPro Torch, and/or a 140ish lumen LED made by Coast and sold at Home Depot.

On the helmet, I use either a 120 lumen Coleman LED from Walmart or a Planet Bike Sport Spot.

I use Two Fish LockBlocks to attach the non bike specific lights to helmet or bars.

I like bar mounted lights to light up the rode and the helmet mounted lights to let me look into corners, or to alert cars approaching on side streets to my presence.
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Old 03-23-09, 07:29 PM
  #12  
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I have a Dinotte 600L and tail light. The light is a very bright LED that will light up the road like a car head light. The batteries are fairly cheap at $50.00 for a two cell and $70.00 for a four cell. The lights are not cheap at $400 or more but it works very well and will last four years.
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Old 03-23-09, 07:34 PM
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P7 up front, dinotte 140l and pbsf in the rear
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Old 03-23-09, 07:43 PM
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Old 03-23-09, 07:49 PM
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Schmidt dynohub user here as well. It's paired w/ a Schmidt Edelux headlight. Although it's possible to run a tail light off the hub, I use several LED lights at the rear.

Generators eliminate fussing with batteries.

The thing about small LEDs as headlights (no blinkies, please!) is that although they might announce your presence, they are not powerful enough to light your way. If you want to maintain a good speed on unlit roads, you need the kind of light available from a good dynohub or more poweful LED system, otherwise you'll experience the rather unpleasant terror associated w/ outrunning your light.

Lighting options for night riding.
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Old 03-23-09, 07:51 PM
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Originally Posted by island rider View Post
I'm considering getting a head and tail light for nights when I get home early and want to get a few miles in on the road without getting dead. I envision this mainly for times when I will be coming back at dusk, not truly for "night riding." Just curious how many people have lights for this kind of purpose and what you might use.

I looked at the lighting/electronics forums, and know the plethora of options available, up to and including strapping 4-cell mag lights to every horizontal surface, but I am curious as to whether people use them and what they might use.
I use a Soubitez chainstay mounted generator with halogen headlight and tail light, and an LED blinky in the rear for when I'm stopped and not generating power for the halogen bulbs.
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Old 03-23-09, 07:54 PM
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Dinotte 800L and 600L up front. Dinotte 140L tail light.
I also carry a backup cat eye tail light just in case my 140L goes out.
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Old 03-23-09, 08:19 PM
  #18  
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I keep small lights in my bag
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Old 03-23-09, 08:23 PM
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knog frogs in the jersey pocket at even the remote chance of darkness, augmented by the reflective patch on the back of my sidis

I hate dealing with fussy batteries in the high-powered lights (I own a L&M that I never use) and the extra weight on the bars screws up the handling

Commuter MTB has a superflash and a front blinky, they're great!
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Old 03-23-09, 08:26 PM
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Best bet for a 2hr ride is what I am using. Planet Bike Super flash with a P7 LED. Right at $100 bucks for a light that blew my NR out of the water and its a normal flashlight that can be used for things other than riding. I highly recommend the p7 flashlight. Great value and insanely bright
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Old 03-23-09, 08:36 PM
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I have some Night Rider rechargeable thing, I think it is a MiNewt. I use it (and a rear blinkie) for early morning riding.
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Old 03-23-09, 08:39 PM
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Originally Posted by ted ward View Post
I hate dealing with fussy batteries in the high-powered lights (I own a L&M that I never use) and the extra weight on the bars screws up the handling
LOL. OK. Sure.
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Old 03-23-09, 08:39 PM
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I have a Knog toad which gives me good visibility in the front and helps in those dark spots on the Greenway. In the back I have the usual Cateye LD1000 on the seat post, and a small Planet Bike Bike Blinkie on the back of my helmet.

I used to have a Planet Bike Blinkie 7 attached to my rack till I hit a bump too hard which caused the light unit to separate from it's bracket. I also used to have a flat PB amber colored Blinkie that was stolen off my bike while it was chained outside Whole Foods in the East Village. Two reasons why it's helpful to have more than one light.

Last edited by Stacy; 03-23-09 at 08:48 PM.
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Old 03-23-09, 08:44 PM
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PB Superflash on the rear and a DinNotte 200L on the front. These are for being seen, not to see. I'd rather spend the extra $100 on a light than go dark with a blingtastic helmet or something like that.
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Old 03-23-09, 08:53 PM
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If you have some electronics skills you can build yourself a very bright, efficient and inexpensive lighting solution. I'm going to give this a try soon, but here's the site and the designers claim (once again - this is strictly a build it yourself thing):

500 lumen, 460 gram total weight headlamp for under $65

"Race proven! I put the light to the ultimate test by competing in the Gold Rush 24-hour Adventure endurance race in the Sierra Nevada mountains of California. Many of the other competitors had $500 HID lamps from NiteRider, Light & Motion, etc, yet throughout the race nearly everyone that saw my light commented as to its extreme brightness or asked where they could get one. It was that much brighter than anything else.

Specs:
brightness: 500+ lumens / 7 million+ mcd @ 15 degree
weight: 120 gram headlamp + 60 gram electronics + 280 gram battery pack = 460 gram total
cost: $60 including batteries
lifetime: 3, 6, 12, 24 hours (4 brightness settings)
size: headlamp portion 5cm x 5cm x 2.5cm
rechargeable: Ni-MH or Lithium-Ion batteries (your choice)
unbreakable: LED technology"
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