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Yet another Lights thread

Discussion in 'Commuting' started by Maizie, 18 Aug 2010.

  1. Maizie

    Maizie New Member

    Location:
    NE Hertfordshire
    Yes, I know there are a gazillion topics on lights already. I’ve been reading them. I’m still at a loss of what to buy…

    Commute is about 1 hour each way, probably about half street-lit (villages) and half non-lit (the bits in between the villages). Half busy A road, little bit of country lane, rest fairly quiet B road.
    I am very concerned about being seen on the A road in particular (well, everywhere really, but the A road has more cars on it, going at a faster speed), and obviously I want to be able to see for all those bits without street lights.


    This is new to me, as my previous commute was street-lights all the way so puny lights did me fine.


    Front lighting.

    Is having two Hope Vision 1s complete overkill? I have good quality batteries and charger already, so going for something like this seemed like a good plan. Then I thought for the price of two of these, I could nearly get Ay-ups. But then one Ay-up unit is only one thing, and out of paranoia I’d want a second completely independent thing just in case – and I can’t run to two sets of Ay-ups!

    I know two front lights runs the risk of people thinking you are a car far-away, but one would be angled for seeing the road surface and the other for the cars seeing me. Are there lights better suited to each of these tasks?



    Rear lighting.

    Cheaper, much less discussed, and just as confusing.

    I currently have a Cateye LD 1100, on the back plate of my rack. I want something else to go on seatpost/pannier/personage, again because I like having two independent lights just in case. I hunted around in the garage and it turns out that I also have a Smart 1/2 Watt light but is that good enough? I thinks Mars 4.0 and “Smart 1W something” are ones I’ve seen mentioned as worth getting but just wanted to know what anyone else thought was good.



    I tend to think that you can’t be too visible, especially if you can mount the lights a different heights (so you don’t have two at the same height = distant car). I'd rather be overlit than underlit, anyway :smile:
     
  2. 2Loose

    2Loose Über Member

    Location:
    Nottingham
    For being seen, I don't think you can beat two lights, one of them set to flash. This is just as true at the rear of the bike.
    Smart 0.5W rear lights are great things, bright, tiny and frugle on the battery juice.

    On the front though, a flasher alongside something like the Hope Vision 1 would alow you to not only be seen, but would allow you to actually see where you are going between villages.

    I (still) want one. My commute is urban so my current light setup (2xrear smart and a smart lunar 25lux front) are good enough to be seen by, but the beam from the front light is not good enough to ride fast in the pitch dark. My GF has promised me a Vision 1 for my birthday :biggrin:
     
  3. Panter

    Panter Just call me Chris...

    The front:

    Sounds a very good plan to me, it's what I use and works well.

    The rear:

    Sorry, can't help with that. I have a small top-peak light on each chainstay and a Knogg frog on the back of my helmet.
    My commute is through twisty country lanes so the idea (in my case) is to present a larger, lit shape (if that makes sense) rather than using very powerful lights and the helmet rear light may be visible over hedges etc before the bike lights are.
     
  4. BSRU

    BSRU A Human Being

    Location:
    Swindon
    On the rear a Dinotte 400R will do the trick, lots of different mounting options and it can be seen from space, well almost. The only problem is you can only buy the from the US but well worth the trouble and expense, makes my smart super flashers look really insignificant.
     
  5. BSRU

    BSRU A Human Being

    Location:
    Swindon
    Thanks for that info.

    Although I just looked on ChainReaction and no sign of Dinotte 400R, just a battery bag which is probably old stock.
     
  6. BentMikey

    BentMikey Rider of Seolferwulf

    Location:
    South London
  7. BSRU

    BSRU A Human Being

    Location:
    Swindon
    I think that might be old news unfortunately, the news article before it is about winter 2007.
     
  8. Matty

    Matty Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Nr Edinburgh
    I upgraded to 2 x Hope 1s last year and they are excellent. Easy to remove at work to prevent theft of and easy to switch between bikes, and use as a torch etc. Also have a Smart 1W rear, which is excellent. Both front and rear lights have attracted (positive) comments from driver colleagues at work.
     
  9. bigtrike

    bigtrike Active Member

    Just got a 16W magicshine light, god is it bright, retena burn from the reflection off the lounge wall during the day, plus it the light switch changes colour to show the remaining battery charge and you can dim the light to make it last plus switch between spot and wide beem independently. All for under £100.00 . Im very impressed.
    Running a Dinotte flashing on the rear, Flash,flash,flash................(pause).... Flash,flash,flash, very distinctive and bright.
     
  10. HJ

    HJ Cycling in Scotland

    Location:
    Auld Reekie
    I can vouch for the Dinotte 400L Road Rider’s experience excellent lights, well worth the effort of importing them from the US...
     
  11. hackbike 666

    hackbike 666 Guest

    Why be sorry about this lights thread...I think these threads are great...I have a Tesco torch (AA battery x2) on the front of the fixie which gives out a wide long beam which lights up the street signs....Went to Tesco's to buy another one of these torches but there weren't any of them there...I have a CREE with 18650 battery on the Audax's...I have an LED Lenser on it's way as well.

    Phantom BLT XR9 I think it is on the back with some Superflash x2.
     
  12. BentMikey

    BentMikey Rider of Seolferwulf

    Location:
    South London
    +1 here. They are the beast, leaving a wide bright red swathe of light on the ground behind you.
     
  13. DrSquirrel

    DrSquirrel Guest

    Front:
    Get the Ayups and buy a cheap Cree torch from ebay for around £10 as your backup.
    Run the backup in the lowest setting possible, or off - no problems with "thinking you're a car".
    Get a "button light" (backupz and that sort) and set to strobe - no more thinking you are a car either.


    Rear:
    0.5W is pansy - aim for 2-5W. Run a pair, one flashing one static.
    "button light" as above, on your helmet, flashing.




    Don't rely on photos of lights unless they are taken under controlled settings.
     
  14. hackbike 666

    hackbike 666 Guest

    2 superflash and two Vistalite although I have ordered another three superflash and they will replace the Vistalite.

    [​IMG]

    Vistalite.

    Cree on the Audax's with a 5w handlebar mount light...
    Fixie has a Tesco torch and two lights that take one AA.Also another small light that flashes and takes one AA.Bought from Evans.


    Sickening...I cannot find another one of those Tesco's torches for love nor money.

    Oh yeah two BLT Fantom XR9 rear light is also another light that seems to be discontinued...One fitted on fixie and the other on the Audax 2006
     
  15. Norm

    Norm Guest

    Not overkill but my choice would be one Vision1 and a good head light. It puts the lights at very different heights, removing even the remote possibility of being mistaken for a car, and, of course, it points at what you are looking at. A head light is unbelievably handy on dark roads (what was that making that noise in the hedgerow?) and, IMO, a life-saver when used to glance towards people who may be considering pulling out on you, or to glance when cars don't dip for you. **

    I'll ride anywhere, any time, on or off road, without any concerns about the dark thanks to a decent head light.

    For a specific recommendation, I use an Exposure Joystick with a RedEye Micro which plugs into the back of it to give a very bright head-mounted rear light too. I wear them on a head band, rather than helmet mounted.

    ** I have an Exposure Maxx D on the bars and a Joystick on my head, I have never had a car which didn't dip for me. I pulled into riding stables last winter and my wife didn't even glance up as she thought I was a lorry thanks to the light I was putting out with both on full power.
     
  16. marcw

    marcw Active Member

    get two smart superflash, one on bike, the other on you/ bag. They are visible from more than far away enough for someone to avoid you, they are the little hooligans of the bike light world. I've got a smart 1W on the front and in flash mode it's offensive enough in a lit area. You'd want something wider for riding in unlit areas though.
     
  17. hackbike 666

    hackbike 666 Guest


    Yeah seems pointless to be seen from two miles away unless you are worried about aircraft...I think the superflash are very good...

    Bright front lights are useful for activating the temporary lights at 3 in the morning although the best tactic is to wobble the beam at them to get them to wake up.

    My Tesco and Cree lights do a great job.
     
  18. Maizie

    Maizie New Member

    Location:
    NE Hertfordshire
    Ooooh, lots of responses, thank you! I have lots of options to look at now (will print this thread out tomorrow, then spend the weekend deciding and order on Monday...that way it goes on next month's credit card bill ;) )

    I like the idea of looking like something inexplicable. So drivers think "What's that, I'd better slow down and pass it wide whatever it is, oh, it's a cyclist". Of course, after the first couple of days the regulars will know who/what you are, move the lights around and be a new strange shape time :smile: