Bike lights...

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Fahel, Mar 21, 2003.

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  1. Fahel

    Fahel Guest

    I have been told of Cateye TL-600 for a rear light and Cateye HL-EL300 for a headlight.

    Looking for any other recommendations for front and rear lights for my road bike.

    Now that it is getting darker earlier I want to start riding at night in the local back streets of
    Beverly Hills. I want to spend under $150 for both.

    What do you recommend and why?

    --
    Regards, FaHeL Sydney Australia

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  2. Tony Raven

    Tony Raven Guest

    FaHeL <[email protected]> wrote:
    > I have been told of Cateye TL-600 for a rear light and Cateye HL-EL300 for a headlight.
    >
    > Looking for any other recommendations for front and rear lights for my road bike.
    >
    > Now that it is getting darker earlier I want to start riding at night in the local back streets of
    > Beverly Hills. I want to spend under $150 for both.
    >
    > What do you recommend and why?

    What conditions? Streetlit, dark? Do you want to front light to see where you are going or is it
    light enough from streetlights and you just want to make sure you are seen by drivers? How fast do
    you ride, what road conditions - do you need to see a lot of stuff to avoid?

    Tony
     
  3. Andrew G

    Andrew G Guest

    i reccomend reflectors. even though lights are mandatory for riding at night, reflectors are far
    more visible to an overtaking vehicle "FaHeL" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    : I have been told of Cateye TL-600 for a rear light and Cateye HL-EL300 for
    a
    : headlight.
    :
    : Looking for any other recommendations for front and rear lights for my
    road
    : bike.
    :
    : Now that it is getting darker earlier I want to start riding at night in
    the
    : local back streets of Beverly Hills. I want to spend under $150 for both.
    :
    : What do you recommend and why?
    :
    : --
    : Regards, FaHeL Sydney Australia
    :
    :
    : ---
    : Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free. Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com).
    : Version: 6.0.463 / Virus Database: 262 - Release Date: 17/03/2003
    :
    :
     
  4. Fahel

    Fahel Guest

    80% is street lit on good roads, and need to be seen by drivers from the rear.

    Ride speed varies but can reach over 30km/h.
    --
    Regards, FaHeL

    Tony Raven" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > FaHeL <[email protected]> wrote:
    > > I have been told of Cateye TL-600 for a rear light and Cateye HL-EL300 for a headlight.
    > >
    > > Looking for any other recommendations for front and rear lights for my road bike.
    > >
    > > Now that it is getting darker earlier I want to start riding at night in the local back streets
    > > of Beverly Hills. I want to spend under $150 for both.
    > >
    > > What do you recommend and why?
    >
    > What conditions? Streetlit, dark? Do you want to front light to see
    where
    > you are going or is it light enough from streetlights and you just want to make sure you are
    > seen by drivers? How fast do you ride, what road conditions - do you need to see a lot of stuff
    > to avoid?
    >
    > Tony
    >
    >

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  5. Ron Hardin

    Ron Hardin Guest

    FaHeL wrote:
    >
    > 80% is street lit on good roads, and need to be seen by drivers from the rear.
    >
    > Ride speed varies but can reach over 30km/h.

    LED headlights are good up to about 7 knots.
    --
    Ron Hardin [email protected]

    On the internet, nobody knows you're a jerk.
     
  6. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    "andrew G" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > i reccomend reflectors. even though lights are mandatory for riding at night, reflectors are far
    > more visible to an overtaking vehicle

    heh - over here both are mandatory, which seems a sensible way to do things.

    cheers, clive
     
  7. Tony Raven

    Tony Raven Guest

    FaHeL <[email protected]> wrote:
    > 80% is street lit on good roads, and need to be seen by drivers from the rear.
    >
    > Ride speed varies but can reach over 30km/h.
    >

    In which case I would go for the HL-EL100 if you can still find one rather than the 300. The early
    white LED Cateye was very visible over a wide range of angles. The new Opticube ones put more light
    on the road (but not enough to be really useful) but at the expense of very poor visibility off
    axis. The 300 is also much bigger, heavier and more expensive. For the rear I would go with the
    TL-AU100. I have an LD-600 and it is good for visibility but I find the width means it touches my
    legs when I'm pedalling. It will depend on your saddle/seatpost arrangement and where you mount it
    but the AU-100 is just as visible and doesn't have the problem.

    Tony

    --
    http://www.raven-family.com

    "I don't want any yes-men around me. I want everybody to tell me the truth even if it costs them
    their job."

    Samuel Goldwyn
     
  8. FaHeL wrote:

    > I have been told of Cateye TL-600 for a rear light and Cateye HL-EL300 for a headlight.
    >
    > Looking for any other recommendations for front and rear lights for my road bike.
    >
    > Now that it is getting darker earlier I want to start riding at night in the local back streets of
    > Beverly Hills. I want to spend under $150 for both.
    >
    > What do you recommend and why?

    If you're happy with a (very) DIY solution:

    I was never willing to pay the prices they were asking for decent lights, so I made my own based
    on the Fat Hippy's Mk IV homemade lights.

    See <http://members.iinet.net.au/~fathers/lightstoc.htm>

    I used a 7 degree 12 volt, 12 watt halogen downlight, plenty of light to ride
    at a decent pace without blinding anyone within four suburbs of where you are.

    I'm using a sealed lead-acid battery (I had one lying around) but dollar for dollar, if you have
    to buy batteries anyway, NiCds are the cheapest over their lifetime.

    NiCds are about half the weight of SLA batteries, but about double the price. I would not normally
    recommend NiMH as they are not ideally suited for high discharge. NiMH however, are the most
    environmentally safest of the lot. Your pick.

    For my rear, I stripped down a 'normal' rear flashing red light unit, and filled it with many more
    high brightness red LEDs. I originally built it for my MTB during a 12 hour competition (I was
    going for the brightest lights prize). It has since been moved to my road bike. It is way overkill
    for its current purpose, but since it runs off the same power supply as the front light, I don't
    have to remember to turn it on and off with the front, and I don't have to fiddle with stupid
    little buttons that never work properly anyway.

    Price is the downlight, a bit of cabling, a power switch, and whatever batteries you choose.
    (remember the charger as well).

    This is probably the cheapest, but not by any means the most convenient or easiest to put together
    if you're not technically inclined.

    --
    Linux Registered User # 302622 <http://counter.li.org
     
  9. Tony Raven <[email protected]>
    >I have an LD-600 and it is good for visibility but I find the width means it touches my legs when
    >I'm pedalling.

    Have you never considered mounting it vertically? It fits in the bracket either way round.

    Andrew
     
  10. Ray

    Ray Guest

    In article <[email protected]>,
    [email protected] says...
    > FaHeL wrote:
    >
    > > I have been told of Cateye TL-600 for a rear light and Cateye HL-EL300 for a headlight.
    > >
    > > Looking for any other recommendations for front and rear lights for my road bike.
    > >
    > > Now that it is getting darker earlier I want to start riding at night in the local back streets
    > > of Beverly Hills. I want to spend under $150 for both.
    > >
    > > What do you recommend and why?
    >
    > If you're happy with a (very) DIY solution:
    >
    > I was never willing to pay the prices they were asking for decent lights, so I made my own based
    > on the Fat Hippy's Mk IV homemade lights.
    >
    > See <http://members.iinet.net.au/~fathers/lightstoc.htm>
    >
    > I used a 7 degree 12 volt, 12 watt halogen downlight, plenty of light to ride
    > at a decent pace without blinding anyone within four suburbs of where you are.
    >
    8<
    > Price is the downlight, a bit of cabling, a power switch, and whatever batteries you choose.
    > (remember the charger as well).
    >
    > This is probably the cheapest, but not by any means the most convenient or easiest to put
    > together if you're not technically inclined.

    If you are really technically inclined, have a look at the lightbrain site and their DIY regulator
    design. www.lightbrain.8m.com

    Allows you to dim the lamp to extend battery life (or get away with a smaller one) for when you only
    want to be seen and not need to see where you are going eg steetlights.

    Just a word of advice though after building this myself, the lamp drive signal comes out on pin 5 of
    the PIC, not pin 2 as shown on their schematic. Otherwise works precisely as advertised and even
    gives a low battery warning by pulsing the lamp off very briefly every few seconds.

    I managed to squeeze everything including the lightbrain and its pushbutton into a towball cover
    (MK3 of fat hippy's I think), tight fit but it does fit reasonably well.

    Cheers Ray
     
  11. [email protected] schreef ...
    > I have been told of Cateye TL-600 for a rear light and Cateye HL-EL300 for a headlight.
    >
    > Looking for any other recommendations for front and rear lights for my road bike.
    >
    > Now that it is getting darker earlier I want to start riding at night in the local back streets of
    > Beverly Hills. I want to spend under $150 for both.
    >
    > What do you recommend and why?
    >
    > --
    > Regards, FaHeL Sydney Australia
    >
    >
    > ---
    > Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free. Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com).
    > Version: 6.0.463 / Virus Database: 262 - Release Date: 17/03/2003
    >
    >
    >
    How about a Nexus hub generator?

    Complete wheelavailable for under $150 from www.peterwhitecycles.com.

    <quote from www.peterwhitecycles.com> Nexus wheel, (hand-built by yours truly) with Sun CR-18
    rim (700c or 26") and DT or Wheelsmith 14-15G double butted spokes; $ 125.00 bolt-on, $ 135.00
    QR. </quote>

    --
    Regards, Marten
     
  12. Tony Raven

    Tony Raven Guest

    Andrew Sweetman <[email protected]> wrote:
    > Tony Raven <[email protected]>
    >> I have an LD-600 and it is good for visibility but I find the width means it touches my legs when
    >> I'm pedalling.
    >
    > Have you never considered mounting it vertically? It fits in the bracket either way round.
    >

    I want a light that is visible from the widest range of horizontal angles. Vertically I'm not
    interested in warning airline pilots so a fairly narrow vertical spread I can point at car/truck
    windscreen height is fine. If I mount the Cateye vertically the wide spread is vertical, the narrow
    is horizontal which is the opposite of what I need.

    Tony

    --
    http://www.raven-family.com

    "I don't want any yes-men around me. I want everybody to tell me the truth even if it costs them
    their job."

    Samuel Goldwyn
     
  13. "Tony Raven" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]
    >
    > I want a light that is visible from the widest range of horizontal angles. Vertically I'm not
    > interested in warning airline pilots so a fairly narrow vertical spread I can point at car/truck
    > windscreen height is fine. If I mount the Cateye vertically the wide spread is vertical, the
    > narrow is horizontal which is the opposite of what I need.

    Is this an LED taillight? LEDs have very little sideways illumination. Most of the brightest light
    is directed straight out fo the diode. The light I think you are referring to has about 5 LEDs in a
    line, however the LEDs are not angled, so the light will still be focused in one direction
    regardless of your vertical/horizontal orientation.

    Have you looked at the Vistalite Eclipse VL700? It has 7 LEDs and is one of the brightest flasher
    lights around.

    Cheers Peter
     
  14. Ray wrote:

    > If you are really technically inclined, have a look at the lightbrain site and their DIY regulator
    > design. www.lightbrain.8m.com

    I recall seeing this some time back. They didn't have a DIY kit at that stage.

    Though they're right about watching the FET Rds on resistance, I made a simple toggle on/off
    switch (made entirely of spare parts we had at work) and had forgotten to check the fets we had.
    Nearly had a meltdown.

    > Allows you to dim the lamp to extend battery life (or get away with a smaller one) for when you
    > only want to be seen and not need to see where you are going eg steetlights.

    I never liked the idea of dimming halogens, apart from the colour change, it reduces the life.

    --
    Linux Registered User # 302622 <http://counter.li.org
     
  15. Call Me Bob

    Call Me Bob Guest

    On Fri, 21 Mar 2003 10:48:54 -0000, "Tony Raven" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >In which case I would go for the HL-EL100 if you can still find one rather than the 300. The early
    >white LED Cateye was very visible over a wide range of angles. The new Opticube ones put more light
    >on the road (but not enough to be really useful) but at the expense of very poor visibility off
    >axis. The 300 is also much bigger, heavier and more expensive.

    No need to search out the old EL100, the new model EL200 is practically identical. The only
    difference I can see is that the new one has a flashing mode, which I find useful.

    I agree that the Opticube one (EL110) has a very narrow beam, I was shocked at how much brightness
    is lost as soon as it's viewed at even a few degrees off dead ahead. Mine went back to the shop and
    was swapped for the EL200 with which I'm very impressed.

    >For the rear I would go with the TL-AU100. I have an LD-600 and it is good for visibility but I
    >find the width means it touches my legs when I'm pedalling. It will depend on your saddle/seatpost
    >arrangement and where you mount it but the AU-100 is just as visible and doesn't have the problem.

    For the rear I'd recommend the Vistalight Nebula 300x. I put one on my commuter a while ago and I'm
    very pleased with it. Five LEDs run from 2 AA batteries. It's big and very bright and
    http://www.cyclexpress.co.uk will sell you one post free for just £5.98. Bargain :eek:)

    One thing to mention is that the Vistalight isn't as easily detachable as some clip on/clip off
    models. Not a problem for me as it stays on my bike permanently but some people may need to strip
    their bikes when they leave them and that would be inconvenient with the supplied bracket.

    Bob
    --
    Mail address is spam trapped To reply by email remove the beverage
     
  16. Tony Raven

    Tony Raven Guest

    Peter Signorini <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > Is this an LED taillight? LEDs have very little sideways illumination. Most of the brightest light
    > is directed straight out fo the diode. The light I think you are referring to has about 5 LEDs in
    > a line, however the LEDs are not angled, so the light will still be focused in one direction
    > regardless of your vertical/horizontal orientation.
    >

    Yes. I agree about LEDs and the brighter they are the narrow the beam from them. I don't have the
    Cateye LD600 to hand but my recollection is that they are slightly fanned on the long axis.

    Tony
     
  17. Iguana Bwana

    Iguana Bwana Guest

    On Sat, 22 Mar 2003 11:39:00 +0000, Call me Bob <[email protected]> wrote:

    >One thing to mention is that the Vistalight isn't as easily detachable as some clip on/clip
    >off models.

    Nebula mightn't be, but their Eclipse is.

    Downsides are that it's (i) pricey, and (ii) less than secure when mounted to anything other than
    the supplied mounting bracket.

    The Eclipse's spring clip lug locks into a mated recess on the supplied mounting bracket which
    prevents it from detaching over rough terrain. But if you clip it directly to your tool/bumpack or
    backpack lightloops, it can and will easily bounce free over the rough stuff. It's happened to me
    and to others. If lucky, one learns the first time and the red lens cover is hopefully still intact.

    I have two Eclipses, and have drilled the mounting arm on them to accept a safety cord. I use thin
    but strong mil spec nylon comms cord so that if it does work itself free when I use it on my
    HydraPak or bumpack, it won't hit the ground. That's the singular weak point of the unit's design.

    Iguana Bwana
     
  18. Iguana Bwana

    Iguana Bwana Guest

    On Sat, 22 Mar 2003 20:18:09 +1100, "Peter Signorini" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Have you looked at the Vistalite Eclipse VL700? It has 7 LEDs and is one of the brightest flasher
    >lights around.

    Concur with Peter on this one. Vistalite's Eclipse is pretty much the business.

    Iguana Bwana
     
  19. Tony Raven <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Andrew Sweetman <[email protected]> wrote:
    > > Tony Raven <[email protected]>
    > >> I have an LD-600 and it is good for visibility but I find the width means it touches my legs
    > >> when I'm pedalling.
    > >
    > > Have you never considered mounting it vertically? It fits in the bracket either way round.
    > >
    >
    > I want a light that is visible from the widest range of horizontal angles. Vertically I'm not
    > interested in warning airline pilots so a fairly narrow vertical spread I can point at car/truck
    > windscreen height is fine. If I mount the Cateye vertically the wide spread is vertical, the
    > narrow is horizontal which is the opposite of what I need.
    >

    there is very little spread in the alignment of the LEDs in the LD-600 (all 5 are pretty much
    parallel, on mine at least), so anything outside a 20-25deg cone directly behind is relying on the
    scatter from the mouldings on the inside of the lens, which is better with it vertical.

    try shining it at a wall in a dark room

    Andrew
     
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