Cycle Lights / Shops in London

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Thomas, Jun 17, 2003.

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  1. Thomas

    Thomas Guest

    Hey all,

    Now we're getting summer weather, there's lots to be done at the office, which means late nights are
    coming up. *sigh*

    Anyways, only recently having aquired my MTB, what lighting would you recommend? I don't have the
    slightest clue as to what to look for, but wouldn't want to spend more than about £40-50 in total.

    Also, does anyone know of any decent bike shops in central London? I'm based in Hammersmith, West
    London, but am more than willing to travel :-D

    Cheers, Thomas (who, of as late, has been slowing down and *stopping* before, rather than shouting
    at, pedestrians)
     
    Tags:


  2. Pete Biggs

    Pete Biggs Guest

    Thomas wrote:
    > Anyways, only recently having aquired my MTB, what lighting would you recommend? I don't have the
    > slightest clue as to what to look for, but wouldn't want to spend more than about £40-50 in total.

    For road riding in London, you generally don't need lights to see but to be seen by. In other words,
    no great need to buy expensive lights that light up the road (although they would be useful in
    places where the street lights are out or for going down dark alleys, or for spotting potholes at
    high speed!).

    For front, Cateye HL-EL200 @ £25 is very eye-catching and econmical to run. Has 3 large superbright
    blue-white LEDs - flashing and steady modes. Just about iluminates the road as well if needs be (but
    only enough for fairly slow-speed cycling if in pitch black).
    . Some of the smaller front flashers are pathetic.
    . Batteries don't tend to last long with low-cost traditional bulb-type lights - so you always
    ending going around with a weak yellow light most of the time (unless using rechargeables
    batteries which provide a constant voltage - but their run-time is short so you must always
    carry spares).
    . A dynamo system is an alternative worth considering to save the hassle of removing lights and
    replacing or recharging batteries.

    For the rear, you need a bright LED light with a flashing mode, in my opinion. Don't bother with a
    cheap bog-standard-type rear light - which aren't very noticeable anyway and cost hassle, weight
    and money.

    Rear reflectors show up very well to motorists so they're worth having (or keeping on) as well.

    > Also, does anyone know of any decent bike shops in central London? I'm based in Hammersmith, West
    > London, but am more than willing to travel :-D

    Evans have got lots of good stock - and branches in central London. Other shops have a better
    reputation for expert service, though (but I hardly use local bike shops at all nowdays so I won't
    recommend any).

    ~PB
     
  3. Steve Peake

    Steve Peake Guest

    On Tue, 17 Jun 2003 22:43:35 +0100, Thomas wrote:

    >
    > Also, does anyone know of any decent bike shops in central London? I'm based in Hammersmith, West
    > London, but am more than willing to travel :-D

    Theres richmond cycles in hammersmith, not the biggest shop but not bad, I use the richmond branch
    all the time. As has already been said Evans has large stores all over the place.

    http://www.richmondcycles.co.uk/ http://www.evanscycles.com/

    Steve
     
  4. Alex Graham

    Alex Graham Guest

  5. Alec Spence

    Alec Spence Guest

    "Pete Biggs" <pLime{remove_fruit}@biggs.tc> wrote:
    > For front, Cateye HL-EL200 @ £25 is very eye-catching and econmical to run. Has 3 large
    > superbright blue-white LEDs - flashing and steady modes. Just about iluminates the road as well if
    > needs be (but only enough for fairly slow-speed cycling if in pitch black).

    Or spend only a couple of pounds more and get the CatEye HL-EL300 for £26.99 (free delivery) from
    www.cyclexpress.co.uk with 5 LEDs - brighter still. I got one last year and it's brilliant. Bought
    it in November and only had to replace the batteries in May, despite using it every day to commute
    (albeit only a 10 min journey) & weekends.

    > For the rear, you need a bright LED light with a flashing mode, in my opinion. Don't bother with a
    > cheap bog-standard-type rear light - which aren't very noticeable anyway and cost hassle, weight
    > and money.

    Many folk swear by the CatEye TL-LD600 (£11.99 from the same source). Again one of the brightest. It
    wasn't a good fit for my seup so I went for the AU100BS which is also excellent.
     
  6. Tony

    Tony Guest

    "Thomas" <tom [at] greysheep [dot] co [dot] uk> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > Hey all,
    >
    > Now we're getting summer weather, there's lots to be done at the office, which means late nights
    > are coming up. *sigh*
    >
    > Anyways, only recently having aquired my MTB, what lighting would you recommend? I don't have the
    > slightest clue as to what to look for, but wouldn't want to spend more than about £40-50 in total.
    >
    > Also, does anyone know of any decent bike shops in central London? I'm based in Hammersmith, West
    > London, but am more than willing to travel :-D
    >
    > Cheers, Thomas (who, of as late, has been slowing down and *stopping* before, rather than shouting
    > at, pedestrians)

    Woolsey of Acton is very good (www.woolseyofacton.co.uk) and not far from Hammersmith. Tony
     
  7. Dave Kahn

    Dave Kahn Guest

    On Wed, 18 Jun 2003 08:59:00 +0000 (UTC), Alex Graham <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Steve Peake wrote:
    >
    >> Theres richmond cycles in hammersmith, not the biggest shop but not bad, I use the richmond
    >> branch all the time. As has already been said Evans has large stores all over the place.
    >>
    >> http://www.richmondcycles.co.uk/ http://www.evanscycles.com/
    >
    >Also www.woolseyofacton.co.uk not far from Hammersmith

    A friend of mine had a wheel repair botched by Woolsey of Acton after she was knocked off by a
    SMIDSY. They never managed to get it right and it was eventually sorted out by the magic touch of
    Francis Thurmer.

    --
    Dave...
     
  8. Thomas wrote:
    > Hey all,
    >=20
    > Now we're getting summer weather, there's lots to be done at the office=
    ,
    > which means late nights are coming up. *sigh*
    >=20
    > Anyways, only recently having aquired my MTB, what lighting would you recommend? I don't have
    > the slightest clue as to what to look for, but wouldn't want to spend more than about =A340-50
    > in total.
    >=20
    > Also, does anyone know of any decent bike shops in central London? I'm =
    based
    > in Hammersmith, West London, but am more than willing to travel :-D
    >

    Bicycle Workshop in All Saints Road,=20 http://www.bicycleworkshop.co.uk/, very friendly and=20
    helpful. They stock most things you need for commuting and=20 always have stuff on clearout.
     
  9. Cd

    Cd Guest

    On Tue, 17 Jun 2003 22:43:35 +0100, "Thomas" <tom [at] greysheep [dot] co [dot] uk> wrote:

    >Hey all,
    >
    >Now we're getting summer weather, there's lots to be done at the office, which means late nights
    >are coming up. *sigh*
    >
    >Anyways, only recently having aquired my MTB, what lighting would you recommend? I don't have the
    >slightest clue as to what to look for, but wouldn't want to spend more than about £40-50 in total.
    >
    >Also, does anyone know of any decent bike shops in central London? I'm based in Hammersmith, West
    >London, but am more than willing to travel :-D

    Many good suggestions in this thread, but won't these do....:

    http://tinyurl.com/enyr I take it there is an Argos in West London...? I use these on dark nights &
    they do me just fine.

    When the supplied Energizers start to go dim, go over to www.7dayshop.com & pick yourself up some
    NiMh batteries & a fast charger, e.g:

    http://tinyurl.com/enza Charger & 4 x AA 2000 MaH

    http://tinyurl.com/43ls another 4 batteries, although there are lots more alternatives on there.

    Total outlay around £40ish with postage.

    I don't know how long your journey home is but those higher capacity NiMh batteries last ages.
    You will of course have the huge inconvenience of removing them & sticking them in the charger
    now & then.

    Cheers

    CD
     
  10. Pete Biggs

    Pete Biggs Guest

    CD wrote:

    > I don't know how long your journey home is but those higher capacity NiMh batteries last ages.
    > You will of course have the huge inconvenience of removing them & sticking them in the charger
    > now & then.

    Depends on the bulb and size of cells. I'm lucky if I get much more than 90 mins from my old
    Eurolight with a bright Krypton bulb and 2 high capacity NiMh C cells. Charging IS inconvenient. And
    batteries running out suddenly is inconvenient.

    ~PB
     
  11. Jim Price

    Jim Price Guest

    Thomas wrote:
    > Anyways, only recently having aquired my MTB, what lighting would you recommend? I don't have the
    > slightest clue as to what to look for, but wouldn't want to spend more than about £40-50 in total.

    Cateye EL-300 for the front (~£33). Cateye AU100BS (~£15) for the back. Strictly speaking, you
    should have lights which conform to BS 6103, which the AU100BS does admirably, including a BS[1]
    rear reflector, which means you can throw away the 'orrible red thing which came with your new bike.
    Unfortunately, the EL-300 is not BS - its just good. A cateye HL-500 is BS (~£15), and plenty good
    enough for London, and cheaper than the EL-300 too, so I suppose I should recomend that as I
    wouldn't want to recomend doing something illegal. It uses up batteries too fast in comparison to
    the LED lights, though. Why no non-Cateye stuff? Well, I think you have to spend a lot more to get
    better, and the cheap stuff is rubbish.

    [1] British Standard, not the more common 'melican usage.
    --
    Jim Price

    http://www.jimprice.dsl.pipex.com

    Conscientious objection is hard work in an economic war.

    Aye!.
     
  12. Alec Spence

    Alec Spence Guest

    wafflyDIRTYcatLITTERhcsBOX <[email protected]> wrote:
    > >Or spend only a couple of pounds more and get the CatEye HL-EL300 for £26.99 (free delivery) from
    > >www.cyclexpress.co.uk with 5 LEDs - brighter still.
    >
    > Just how bright are these ones? Do they actually illuminate the road ahead, rather than just be
    > bright enough to be seen by oncoming traffic? Any good where there is no street lighting??

    Compared with my previous CatEye HL-MC200 it's "similar". The beam is more focussed, going a long
    way with less stray light and tends to look less obvious on the ground - think this may be partly
    the "purer" white colour. On the few unlit areas I ride it does illuminate the road enough for me.

    The focussed beam is enough to be uncomfortable when shone into the eyes from 100 ft away in
    the garden.

    It's obviously not up there with Lumicycles, but the batteries last for *months* so it's as near
    "fit and forget" as you can get without a dynamo system. And you don't have to worry about bulbs
    going. Previously I had to charge my batteries weekly which was still a bit of a palaver - and
    that's with just a short 10 min commute.

    Just wish it was BS-approved, but I'm still infinitely more visible on my LED-lit bike (EL300 &
    older white LD500 as backup at the front & AU100BS at the back) than most other riders I see - at
    least half of which are unlit and clad in stealth black.

    No light is perfect, there are always trade-offs of cost, brightness, battery life and weight. For
    my mainly commuter riding the EL300 was at last the light that met my needs.
     
  13. Helen S wrote:

    >> Or spend only a couple of pounds more and get the CatEye HL-EL300 for £26.99 (free delivery) from
    >> www.cyclexpress.co.uk with 5 LEDs - brighter still.
    >
    > Just how bright are these ones? Do they actually illuminate the road ahead, rather than just be
    > bright enough to be seen by oncoming traffic? Any good where there is no street lighting??

    They seem to be bright enough to make road signs, number plates, etc reflect quite nicely, but I'm
    not so sure about lighting up the road. Weather permitting I shall likely be using a pair of them on
    the Dunwich Dynamo next month, though, so we'll see...

    Dave Larrington - http://www.legslarry.beerdrinkers.co.uk/
    ===========================================================
    Editor - British Human Power Club Newsletter
    http://www.bhpc.org.uk/
    ===========================================================
     
  14. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    On Wed, 18 Jun 2003 23:15:18 +0100, CD <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Many good suggestions in this thread, but won't these do....:

    Those look like AA cells, which have a fairly limited life in a halogen light. The Cateye set with
    the halogen headlight & LED rear is the best value IMO in terms of quantity of light, quality of
    product and battery life.

    I have a hub dynamo on each of my commuting bikes. No flat batteries for me :)

    Guy
    ===
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    notice: ADSL service in process of transfer to a new ISP. Obviously there will be a week of downtime
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  15. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    On Thu, 19 Jun 2003 02:15:53 +0100, Jim Price <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Cateye AU100BS (~£15) for the back. Strictly speaking, you should have lights which conform to BS
    >6103, which the AU100BS does admirably, including a BS[1] rear reflector, Unfortunately, the EL-300
    >is not BS - cateye HL-500 is BS (~£15)

    Correct. And Cateye do a blister pack of one HL-500 and one TL-AU100BS, available from most
    bike shops.

    I would add a second AU-100, one steady one blinking. But I'm cautious that way: I have one of these
    on the back of my bike:

    http://www.reallite.com/

    Guy
    ===
    ** WARNING ** This posting may contain traces of irony. http://www.chapmancentral.com Advance
    notice: ADSL service in process of transfer to a new ISP. Obviously there will be a week of downtime
    between the engineer removing the BT service and the same engineer connecting the same equipment on
    the same line in the same exchange and billing it to the new ISP.
     
  16. Pete Biggs

    Pete Biggs Guest

    wafflyDIRTYcatLITTERhcsBOX wrote:
    >> Or spend only a couple of pounds more and get the CatEye HL-EL300

    > Just how bright are these ones? Do they actually illuminate the road ahead, rather than just be
    > bright enough to be seen by oncoming traffic? Any good where there is no street lighting??

    It's still an LED-type. Assuming it's similar or less than "twice as good" as the EL200, it'll will
    illuminate the road somewhat (with a blue spot) and be just about good enough when you get caught
    out in otherwise lit areas where some of the street lamps are out, or if going down short unlit
    paths. It won't be adequate for any distance on completely unlit country lanes. It is *possible* to
    ride on unlit roads with this type of light but you have to concentrate like mad not to run into
    anything - especially when doing over 15mph.

    For country winter riding, the sensible options are *powerful* dynamo or rechargeable systems.
    Basically, if it's got a battery, it's got to be a big expensive one! ...Like the type that sit in a
    bottle cage or special bracket on the frame (with cable running up to the separate lamp).

    ~PB
     
  17. Thomas

    Thomas Guest

    "Pete Biggs" <pLime{remove_fruit}@biggs.tc> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > Thomas wrote:
    > > Anyways, only recently having aquired my MTB, what lighting would you recommend? I don't have
    > > the slightest clue as to what to look for, but wouldn't want to spend more than about £40-50 in
    > > total.

    Hi All,

    Thanks for all the suggestions, all very much appreciated for a novice such as myself :)

    In the end, I went with Alex's suggestion of a CatEye HL-EL300 for the front and a CatEye TL-LD600
    on the rear.

    Just had lots of fun fitting mudguards and SPD pedals today. I'm turning into a bit of a
    bike geek...

    Thomas.
     
  18. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    On Thu, 19 Jun 2003 20:04:27 +0100, "Thomas" <tom [at] greysheep [dot] co [dot] uk> wrote:

    >In the end, I went with Alex's suggestion of a CatEye HL-EL300 for the front and a CatEye TL-LD600
    >on the rear.

    Just remember that when Johnny SMIDSY decides that today is your day to eat asphalt his lawyers will
    claim contributory negligence on your part because your bike does not meet the road vehicles
    lighting regulations. If your lights are good they may fail. May.

    I'm not kidding: even though BS approved front and rear lights can be completely worthless and still
    pass the standard I make a point of ensuring that at least one light at each end of any bike I ride
    at night has the fig-leaf of BS approval.

    Sorry.

    Guy
    ===
    ** WARNING ** This posting may contain traces of irony. http://www.chapmancentral.com Advance
    notice: ADSL service in process of transfer to a new ISP. Obviously there will be a week of downtime
    between the engineer removing the BT service and the same engineer connecting the same equipment on
    the same line in the same exchange and billing it to the new ISP.
     
  19. Thomas

    Thomas Guest

    "Just zis Guy, you know?" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:p[email protected]...
    > On Thu, 19 Jun 2003 20:04:27 +0100, "Thomas" <tom [at] greysheep [dot] co [dot] uk> wrote:
    >
    > >In the end, I went with Alex's suggestion of a CatEye HL-EL300 for the
    front
    > >and a CatEye TL-LD600 on the rear.
    >
    > Just remember that when Johnny SMIDSY decides that today is your day to eat asphalt his lawyers
    > will claim contributory negligence on your part because your bike does not meet the road vehicles
    > lighting regulations. If your lights are good they may fail. May.
    >
    > I'm not kidding: even though BS approved front and rear lights can be completely worthless and
    > still pass the standard I make a point of ensuring that at least one light at each end of any bike
    > I ride at night has the fig-leaf of BS approval.
    >
    > Sorry.

    Wow, that's one of those things I simply wouldn't have considered, thank you.

    Moo.

    Well, you can never have too many lights, I suppose. Time to get a cheapo one and a 16-pack of
    "powercell" on Oxford Street.

    Now just need to work out quite how the hell I can fit two lights on the back AND the mudguard
    hanging off. Shall be "fun".

    Thomas.
     
  20. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    On Thu, 19 Jun 2003 22:32:03 +0100, "Thomas" <tom [at] greysheep [dot] co [dot] uk> wrote:

    >Well, you can never have too many lights, I suppose. Time to get a cheapo one and a 16-pack of
    >"powercell" on Oxford Street.

    It's the smart move. They may be crap, but they are legal. The Cateye TL-AU100BS is BS approved and
    well worth having, so I would advise one of those and put your curent one on Flash. Not strictly
    legal, but you won't get called on it and if you also have a legal rear light you should be safe
    from the lawyers. Cagers spot flashers better than steadies.

    Guy
    ===
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    notice: ADSL service in process of transfer to a new ISP. Obviously there will be a week of downtime
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    the same line in the same exchange and billing it to the new ISP.
     
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