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Clocks go back and they're out there

Discussion in 'Commuting' started by LOGAN 5, 30 Oct 2007.

  1. LOGAN 5

    LOGAN 5 New Member

    .....cycling with no lights in dark clothing. You can just about see them on lit roads but on the cycle lanes where there is poor/non existent street lighting and they're really difficult to see. They don't seem to have any road/lane sense and weave/wobble unpredictably. How do they expect other road users and cyclists to see them looming out of the murk? It doesn't cost much to put some lights on so why ride without?

    Also experiencing undertaking cyclists when I'm trying to keep a decent lane position. I'm on a slowish bike so don't do primary often but occassionally I am further out than usual for various positioning reasons and get these idiots undertaking. Then get other muppets passing really close on the outside squeezing between me and faster moving traffic. One slight adjustment to my position and we would collide. They obviously think they're totally in control of the overtake which they're not of course riding that close.

    Touched shoulders with one overtaking me last week. He thought he could squeeze past when there wasn't enough room just as I'd moved over to avoid one of those large wet manhole covers.

    It's good to see so many cyclists now riding to work but a fair few of them are nutters and as unpredictable as bad cagers.
     
  2. Twenty Inch

    Twenty Inch New Member

    Location:
    Behind a desk
    They tend not to last long. Either they get injured or they get lights. Sometimes they need to get injured before they get lights, as my (unlit, unreflecting) experience shows. Just be careful.
     
  3. Arch

    Arch Married to Night Train

    Location:
    York, UK

    Indicating left smartly should take care of them...xx( Especially if you take to wearing the arm of a suit of armour.... With a cactus sellotaped to it.

    I think I've been reading Papercorn's posts for too long...
     
  4. Tetedelacourse

    Tetedelacourse New Member

    Location:
    Rosyth
    Here's a daft question (yeah yeah not my first and it wont be my last).

    How do you check that your batteries are OK for your lights? I don't record the length of time I have my lights on - would be several journeys of varying length and too much for my sparrow-brain to calculate. I only ever look at them on when I'm about to set off, and they usually seem bright to me, but then this is in the dark with no other lights around and I can't tell how bright they are!

    Any tips?
     
  5. Molecule Man

    Molecule Man Well-Known Member

    Location:
    London
    Well you can buy battery testers, but it's obviously a bit of a faff to to take the batteries out and test them every time you need to ride in the dark.
    I carry spare sets of batteries with me all the time (in a cheap Lidl saddle pack along with my toolkit, though pockets would be okay), and try to get into the habit of keeping an eye on the brightness of my lights. The front is easy, just wave a hand in front every so often, and my rear light is visible from the side and above, so I can see if it's okay just by looking back.
     
  6. Maz

    Maz Guru

    I normally change batteries after 3 weeks max. There's usually still some life in them, so they end up as spares for the kids toys.
     
  7. For me its not scientific but before switching them off at the other end I give them a quick check if I'm not happy I replace the batteries. I probably replace them too often but I use rechargeables which makes it easier for me. I also tend to carry two sets of lights in winter.
     
  8. Elmer Fudd

    Elmer Fudd Miserable Old Bar Steward

    As I've said elsewhere, re-chargeables, they give a constant output until they die. No real discernible dimming down, they're either working or they aint.
    Keep a spare set in (hopefully) an inside pocket for body heat and Bob's your Aunties Uncles second cousin. Plus they are greener. See here for one of the better makes.
     
  9. Get a dynamo setup.
     
  10. bonj2

    bonj2 Guest

    If they're for commuting, then presumably your journey lasts pretty much the same length of time each day? So given that you know/can work out the maximum burn time of your lights, you can then divide one by the other and work out how many days/weeks they should last. Test/charge them after 3 querters of this time.

    You can get 'smart' battery chargers that have a little LED display for how charged each battery in them is, and stop when they're fully charged - they also function as battery testers.
     
  11. fossyant

    fossyant Ride It Like You Stole It!

    Location:
    South Manchester
    spare batteries. I carry spares for my led's and my main lights run from a water bottle battery which is charged every day at work. If one set fails for some reason, I have backups, including some spare bulbs for my main lights. doesn't take up much room
     
  12. Twenty Inch

    Twenty Inch New Member

    Location:
    Behind a desk
    Spare batteries for all lights in the panniers, a cheap £10 mulitmeter from Hal****'s or Maplin.
     
  13. BentMikey

    BentMikey Rider of Seolferwulf

    Location:
    South London
    I usually have a spare set of emergency blinkies for riding, but my bikes both have 2 front and 2 rear lights anyway. I don't carry spare batteries, since the LEDs I have just go dim for tens and tens of hours. As soon as I see a dim light, I change the batteries.
     
  14. Tynan

    Tynan Veteran

    Location:
    e4
    bought new lights recently, decent ones, £20 the front and £16 the rear, both very very bright and run for 300 hours plus

    there really is no excuse for people, I'm amazed they feel safe, they can have no imagination whatsoever

    the new front one replaced a very old blinky cateye of the first vintage from ten years ago, it's amazingly bright, you can see it reflected in thing a long way away, and I really noticed cars spotting me coming at once rather than late
     
  15. fossyant

    fossyant Ride It Like You Stole It!

    Location:
    South Manchester
    The only problem is when commuting, that mentioning to them to get lights as you pass might not be too good if you get caught at traffic lights, no matter how quick you are..... if they can't be bothered with lights, then I'm fairly sure they wouldn't be too bothered about hitting you !

    I'm just waiting for the 'it's not xmas yet' comments !