Rear light - Flashing or constant?

Discussion in 'General Cycling Discussions' started by mattobrien, 8 Aug 2012.

  1. mattobrien

    mattobrien Veteran

    Location:
    Sunny Suffolk
    I had the unenviable pleasure of taking my MiL, an 11 mile route taking in both town and country driving. While on an unlit section of country road I was behind another car, probably c. 150-200 meters and suddenly I saw a cyclist ahead. No problem as there was time to move out the way and give plenty of clearance while passing, but I saw him later than I would have liked.

    The road wasn't straight with a few curves and I think that I confused his rear light with that of the car in front. He had a constant rear light and not one that automatically says cyclist / one similar in tone to a car rear light at a bit of distance.

    This got me thinking about rear lights and whether or not I would have seen him earlier if he had had a flashing rear light or on that couldn't be mistaken for anything other than a bike light.

    I wanted to as the wisdom of CC whether they have their rear lights se to constant or to flash and whether or not you use instantly distinguishable lights?

    While this cyclist had his rear light on he wasn't as visible as I would want to have been in his circumstances.
     
  2. ianrauk

    ianrauk Tattooed Beat Messiah

    Location:
    Atop a Ti
    A lot of commuting cyclists in London, including myself, utilise two rear lights. One constant, one flashing.
     
    akb, HLaB, dave r and 2 others like this.
  3. Octet

    Octet Über Member

    The law over in Guernsey (Channel Islands) is that you must at night (or poor visibility) have at minimum a red rear reflector, amber plates on the back of your pedals and a flashing red light on the back.
     
  4. summerdays

    summerdays Cycling in the sun Moderator

    Location:
    Bristol
    Mostly as Ian say, but it can depend on the conditions - daylight in winter (in gloomy conditions), often just the one flashing. In heavy traffic, you are probably unlikely to see the light of a cyclist unless it is high up on their helmet, that much in advance.
     
  5. benb

    benb Evidence based cyclist

    Location:
    Epsom
    I have the CatEye TL-LD1100, which I like because you can have solid and flashing in one unit.
    106_img1.jpg
     
    Dayvo likes this.
  6. Arjimlad

    Arjimlad Tights of Cydonia

    Location:
    South Glos
    I keep it on flashing, batteries last longer and it catches the eye more easily.
     
  7. GrasB

    GrasB Veteran

    Location:
    Nr Cambridge
    As Ian said, one of each. If the two lights are close together then make sure the brighter one is flashing!
     
  8. GrasB

    GrasB Veteran

    Location:
    Nr Cambridge
    but it's much harder to judge speed, direction & distance from.
     
  9. Arjimlad

    Arjimlad Tights of Cydonia

    Location:
    South Glos
    Thereby making motorists less confident at close passes ?
     
  10. ianrauk

    ianrauk Tattooed Beat Messiah

    Location:
    Atop a Ti
    Cheers,
    needed some new lights for the upcoming dark evening commutes.
    Think that might be the one.
     
  11. marinyork

    marinyork Resting in suspended Animation

    Location:
    Logopolis
    The 1000 and 1100 have been great. It was just the cost. There are better value for money lights out there that do other things.

    I always liked my 1000 because of the all round visibility vs say mars 4.0 or my smart ones.
     
  12. BSRU

    BSRU A Human Being

    Location:
    Swindon
    The Dinotte 400R has a setting where it is on and pulses, so it does both(steady/flash) at the same time.
    Plus it is very very bright:thumbsup:
     
  13. mcshroom

    mcshroom Bionic Subsonic

    Location:
    Egremont, Cumbria
    I use two, one flashing and one standard. This gives the extra backup of you still having a light on the rear if one of the lights dies on the way home.

    In other countries such as Germany, flashing lights are not legal, so my PIxeo and B&M lights are steady-only
     
  14. albion

    albion Veteran

    Location:
    South Tyneside
    If conditions darken I switch to constant as a flashing light becomes an irritant danger.
     
  15. benb

    benb Evidence based cyclist

    Location:
    Epsom
    The downside, apart from the price, is that it's a bit heavy and bulky. If you're fitting to a bracket on the frame or rack, that's fine, but if you want to clip it to a bag or something you might have an issue. Mine went flying off once, as I had it secured just with the clip onto a rack bag.
     
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