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Old 11-07-2012, 02:52 AM   #1
newleaf150
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Pics of night-cycling lights

I did a little night cycling last season, but various life commitments and problems stopped me from doing all I wanted to, then. Now, I'm in a better position and hoping to log some good nighttime miles this Winter. To do so, I've expanded my collection of lights.

After a very frustrating name-brand light failure, I bought several eBay specials - like $6 each with shipping. They're tactical light knock-offs, powered by 3 AAA batts each. Two are mounted on my trekking bars, one on each side.
mc2_-120.jpg
The third is attached to my helmet with industrial velcro and stabilized with zip-ties. This is my first time using a helmet-mounted light, and it introduces some interesting problems. Think carving one turn with your bike and a completely different one with your head and eyes as you look at the path to come. Very different from daylight cycling. Nevertheless, I love it.
mc2_-114.jpg
Finally, I have a Planet Bike taillight attached to one of my rack's supports. It transfers to the pannier in the event I'm running loaded.
mc2_-122.jpg
More pics to come; I also run a 3-led blinkey on a swivel on the back of my helmet, and a 5-led Bell light on my Camelbak. You might say I'm lit up like a Christmas tree, fore and aft. My philosophy is that more visibility is pretty much always better

I'll get pics of that, and, hopefully, of the whole setup in action. I'm considering ways to try to get shots of the throw of my headlights out on the trail, but it'll take some effort to do so in a meaningful way.

The twin lights on my bars give a great throw forward and to either side. Makes for easier turns and less of a feeling like you're cycling through a tunnel. The lights' throw is adjustable, and will take more tuning. I ended up with one at its widest setting, the other a bit tighter for better distance. Nice.

The helmet-mounted light, focused a bit more tightly yet, gave me nice throw to look into and through curves, also spot things off-trail - like a deer I startled out of some willows.

I rode toward her for a couple of minutes, looking at the bright reflection of her eyes and wondering if it was an animal or a MUP sign through the bushes. Then I got closer and she moved. Amazing how the eye picks out movement in low light where it can't identify the same object while still.

It's wonderful to spin your way through the dark with 3 lights and enough batteries to replenish all of them. My charger will be getting a workout in days to come. Hopefully, with a little further validation of my rig, I'll be pushing out a bit further in terms of mileage.

Do you cycle after dark? How do you roll in terms of lights?



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Old 11-07-2012, 03:01 AM   #2
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No night riding for me. I really would like to do it but working nights kind of puts a damper on it for me. I do have a set of lights on my Roubaix that I use for early morning rides. They are for making me more visable to motorist on their morning commutes.



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Old 11-07-2012, 03:31 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davereo View Post
No night riding for me. I really would like to do it but working nights kind of puts a damper on it for me. I do have a set of lights on my Roubaix that I use for early morning rides. They are for making me more visable to motorist on their morning commutes.
Good on you! I've seen a lot of different cyclists in the early mornings this season, sadly, from behind the wheel of my car. The ones with lights - even a single one fore and aft - are SO much more visible and noticeable than their counterparts. Much more scarce, too.
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Old 11-07-2012, 11:55 AM   #4
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Nice looking setup! The roads I ride on are too dangerous to ride at night but I love to go out on the mountain bike and ride in the dirt at night.

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Old 11-07-2012, 01:49 PM   #5
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I run a NiteRider MiNewt 600 up front with a 6 LED Streamlight head/helmet lamp kept as a back up. For the rear, I run two PDW DangerZone taillights, one clipped to my saddle bag and one attached to the rear of my helmet.

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Old 11-07-2012, 02:49 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kneedrachen View Post
I run a NiteRider MiNewt 600 up front with a 6 LED Streamlight head/helmet lamp kept as a back up. For the rear, I run two PDW DangerZone taillights, one clipped to my saddle bag and one attached to the rear of my helmet.
Nice! I'd seen the NightRider review before, but recommend checking it out for those who haven't. Good to know others use and like the light
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Old 11-07-2012, 03:20 PM   #7
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I will say, I think the way you are running your lights up front makes a lot of sense as it gives the viewer an idea of your vehicle's width, something a single light does not do.

There's a guy I see every few weeks in the spring/summer that has two lights, one mounted on the front of each drop on his 'bars. Looks like what you have, and I think that makes the cyclist much more visible.

I like having a helmet mount, I've found if a car on a sidestreet may give me a problem I tend to move my head towards them; the light seems to get their attention when it is shining at them.

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Old 11-07-2012, 05:27 PM   #8
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I would also recommend the use of reflective tape on the sides and back of the bike. No batteries, doesn't weigh anything, and it is less distracting to drivers while still getting their attention.

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Old 11-26-2012, 12:13 PM   #9
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yeah, i think so, I would also recommend the use of reflective tape on the sides and back of the bike. No batteries, doesn't weigh anything, and it is less distracting to drivers while still getting their attention.

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Old 02-07-2013, 10:33 PM   #10
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I usually run 4 Cateyes up front (2 smaller ones are usually on flash mode) and 2 Cateyes and 1 Planet Bike Turbo Flash in the back



cat1.jpg   cat2.jpg  
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