vista lite bulb replacement

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Bill.Raley, Jan 22, 2003.

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  1. Bill.Raley

    Bill.Raley Guest

    I have been told it is proprietary and so I am supposed to pay over $20 for a freaking bulb? Is
    there any alternative? I will not buy a vista lite product anymore if there is not.

    I am not familiar with the bulbs so maybe someone can suggest another bulb that will work in it? It
    is the nightstick version..

    Thanks!

    Bill-West Lafayette IN.
     
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  2. Jmk

    Jmk Guest

    Upon further review...... I located my Vistalite owners manual and it says to use an MR11 bulb. I
    did a search on google for "MR11" and there seems to be a number of sources for this bulb type. The
    prices are far less than the $20 - $30 that other sources have.

    Maybe that helps. I apologize for not being more thorough with my first post.

    Jim

    "jmk" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Bill,
    >
    > The good news is that these guys have them:
    >
    > http://secure.gulf.net/acb/index.cfm?&DID=17
    >
    > The bad news is that they are $30.00!!! Where are you finding replacement bulbs for $20?
    >
    > I corresponded with Vistalite several months ago, and I asked about their intentions to support
    > the Nightstick systems in the future. Their
    response
    > was less than encouraging, and they indicated that they no longer support the product. The only
    > lights that Vistalite does support are the ones
    that
    > contain batteries, the $20-ish products. Vistalite was acquired by Bell, IIRC. There may have been
    > a subsequent acquisition as well.
    >
    > I'm planning an "exit strategy" and a possible move to Nightrider or whatever the Light du jour is
    > when my bulbs fry.
    >
    > Good Luck, Jim
    >
    > "bill.raley" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > I have been told it is proprietary and so I am supposed to pay over $20
    > for
    > > a freaking bulb? Is there any alternative? I will not buy a vista lite product anymore
    if
    > > there is not.
    > >
    > > I am not familiar with the bulbs so maybe someone can suggest another
    bulb
    > > that will work in it? It is the nightstick version..
    > >
    > > Thanks!
    > >
    > > Bill-West Lafayette IN.
    > >
    > >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    > -----= Posted via Newsfeeds.Com, Uncensored Usenet News =----- http://www.newsfeeds.com - The #1
    > Newsgroup Service in the World! -----== Over 80,000 Newsgroups - 16 Different Servers! =-----

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  3. Bicycle Garage Indy (Indianapolis). I am not sure where in the $20s it was, but between $20 and $30.
    I believe it was something like $27.

    Still way too much. VistaLite should consider that they have lost a customer that is ready to buy a
    new lightset because they overprice their bulb.

    Truth is, one of the two lights that I bought at Galyans Indianapolis NEVER worked and they did not
    have a replacement. I never dreamed that a bulb would be so expensive.

    The same bike shop can get the entire light fixture for less than $40 dollars. That includes the
    bulb!!!!! Doesn't take an Einstein to figure out this scenario.

    I will shop for a different light from a different company.

    This is simply my opinion.
     
  4. Baird Webel

    Baird Webel Guest

    On 1/8/03 07:08, in article [email protected], "jmk" <[email protected]> wrote:

    > Upon further review...... I located my Vistalite owners manual and it says to use an MR11 bulb. I
    > did a search on google for "MR11" and there seems to be a number of sources for this bulb type.
    > The prices are far less than the $20 - $30 that other sources have.
    >
    > Maybe that helps. I apologize for not being more thorough with my first post.
    >
    > Jim
    >

    You can get MR-11 bulbs for less that bike specific ones from Vistalite or NiteRider, but the VL and
    NR bulb are going to be brighter. They are "overvolted" bulbs, designed to be run around 5.2 volts
    instead of 6V, thus when you put 6V into them, they put out more light. They are also likely to have
    better optics for cycling than some of the more generic bulbs that often put out a very wide beam.

    If you find a source of overvolted bulbs in narrow beam patterns for less than $20 please do post
    the source. I'd be most interested.

    Baird

    > "jmk" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    >> Bill,
    >>
    >> The good news is that these guys have them:
    >>
    >> http://secure.gulf.net/acb/index.cfm?&DID=17
    >>
    >> The bad news is that they are $30.00!!! Where are you finding replacement bulbs for $20?
    >>
    >> I corresponded with Vistalite several months ago, and I asked about their intentions to support
    >> the Nightstick systems in the future. Their
    > response
    >> was less than encouraging, and they indicated that they no longer support the product. The only
    >> lights that Vistalite does support are the ones
    > that
    >> contain batteries, the $20-ish products. Vistalite was acquired by Bell, IIRC. There may have
    >> been a subsequent acquisition as well.
    >>
    >> I'm planning an "exit strategy" and a possible move to Nightrider or whatever the Light du jour
    >> is when my bulbs fry.
    >>
    >> Good Luck, Jim
    >>
    >> "bill.raley" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    >>> I have been told it is proprietary and so I am supposed to pay over $20
    >> for
    >>> a freaking bulb? Is there any alternative? I will not buy a vista lite product anymore
    > if
    >>> there is not.
    >>>
    >>> I am not familiar with the bulbs so maybe someone can suggest another
    > bulb
    >>> that will work in it? It is the nightstick version..
    >>>
    >>> Thanks!
    >>>
    >>> Bill-West Lafayette IN.
     
  5. Paul Kopit

    Paul Kopit Guest

    Almost anything you find will be 12 volt system. The 5 volt ones are expensive and hard to find.

    On Wed, 8 Jan 2003 06:08:15 -0600, "jmk" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Upon further review...... I located my Vistalite owners manual and it says to use an MR11 bulb.
     
  6. Baird Webel wrote:
    >
    >
    > You can get MR-11 bulbs for less that bike specific ones from Vistalite or NiteRider, but the VL
    > and NR bulb are going to be brighter. They are "overvolted" bulbs, designed to be run around 5.2
    > volts instead of 6V, thus when you put 6V into them, they put out more light.

    Are you sure about this? If you want to overvolt, it seems more sensible to put one extra battery in
    the pack, rather than commissioning custom bulbs.

    Has anyone put a voltmeter on the output of a Vistalight Nightstick while it's running? Is it really
    6.0 volts? Just curious.

    > They are also likely to have better optics for cycling than some of the more generic bulbs that
    > often put out a very wide beam.

    For my homebuilt MR-11 unit, I just searched for a "spot" bulb, not a "flood." Of course, mine was
    12 volts, so the search was much easier.

    --
    Frank Krygowski [email protected]
     
  7. Jmk

    Jmk Guest

    "Frank Krygowski" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...

    > Has anyone put a voltmeter on the output of a Vistalight Nightstick while it's running? Is it
    > really 6.0 volts? Just curious.
    >

    I did this morning. It measured 6.3 volts.

    Jim K jkruzit (AT) excite (DOT) com

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  8. Baird Webel

    Baird Webel Guest

    On 1/8/03 10:03, in article [email protected], "Frank Krygowski"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    > Baird Webel wrote:
    >>
    >>
    >> You can get MR-11 bulbs for less that bike specific ones from Vistalite or NiteRider, but the VL
    >> and NR bulb are going to be brighter. They are "overvolted" bulbs, designed to be run around 5.2
    >> volts instead of 6V, thus when you put 6V into them, they put out more light.
    >
    > Are you sure about this? If you want to overvolt, it seems more sensible to put one extra battery
    > in the pack, rather than commissioning custom bulbs.

    Yes, I am about as sure as I can be. The Nicad battery packs that come with VL 6V lighting heads are
    definitely 5 cells at 1.2V per cell.

    I agree with your sentiments, I wish they had just gone to a 6 cell battery; the only thing I can
    figure is that they probably did this when they were wanting to continue using the cheap lead
    acid batteries in with the lighting heads and these can't be raised to 7.2V as easily as the
    Nicads or Nimh?

    Baird
     
  9. Baird Webel

    Baird Webel Guest

    On 1/8/03 22:14, in article [email protected], "Bill in Indiana"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    > Bicycle Garage Indy (Indianapolis). I am not sure where in the $20s it was, but between $20 and
    > $30. I believe it was something like $27.
    >
    > Still way too much. VistaLite should consider that they have lost a customer that is ready to buy
    > a new lightset because they overprice their bulb.
    >
    > Truth is, one of the two lights that I bought at Galyans Indianapolis NEVER worked and they did
    > not have a replacement. I never dreamed that a bulb would be so expensive.
    >
    > The same bike shop can get the entire light fixture for less than $40 dollars. That includes the
    > bulb!!!!! Doesn't take an Einstein to figure out this scenario.
    >
    > I will shop for a different light from a different company.
    >
    > This is simply my opinion.
    >

    I would agree, but it isn't just VistaLite. I don't think you will find another company with much
    cheaper bulbs. Most other companies make their 6V lights with MR-11 bulbs as well, so if you do find
    cheaper bulbs from Niteriter or the like, you can usually use them in the VistaLite system. All my
    VistaLite lighting heads have NR bulbs, but retail on these bulbs are around $20 as well. I got
    lucky and found some in a closeout bin for $12.

    Now if you want to really pay a lot for bulbs, buy an HID light.

    VistaLite is out of the high powered light business in any case. Anything you find from them now are
    simply close outs.

    Baird
     
  10. Mark Janeba

    Mark Janeba Guest

    Baird Webel wrote:

    > Now if you want to really pay a lot for bulbs, buy an HID light.

    Very true - but can they burn out? (Having no filament, operating by an arc discharge). (I really
    don't know the answer - what would the failure mode be besides breakage?)

    Regards,
    --
    Mark Janeba remove antispam phrase in address to reply
     
  11. Bill Putnam wrote:
    >
    > I have used a 6V 10W push in bulb in my old Union headlamp and found it to give more useful light
    > than 20W MR11 bulbs, and the Bisy and Lumotec headlamps have a better beam pattern than the Union.
    > There may be a concern with the higher wattage bulbs melting plastic parts in the
    > Bisy/Lumotec/Union headlamps, but I have never had any problem with this (most of my bike light
    > use is during cool/cold weather, however).

    I just began playing with a 3" diameter Union headlamp, into which I inserted a halogen bulb from
    Radio Shack. It's marked "Osram, 5.2V, .85A" (which is just 4.4 watts), and it cost just $4. The
    light is very nice, and the beam pattern is such that it lights the road better than my 6 Watt
    Vistalight 4xx series.

    The actual voltage across the bulb is 5.8 Volts, when powered by my lead-acid six Volt battery. So
    that's a bit overvolted too. I haven't used it enough to assess bulb life. I need to work out a
    better mounting system than the temporary hose-clamp thing I've got for testing.

    > The Lumotec powered by a Schmidt hub generator with a 3W bulb, is adequate for my needs (urban
    > riding) anyway so I don't bother with all the expense and hassle of batteries anymore to get
    > marginally more light (at least compared to the 6 and 10 Watt MR11 systems).

    Same here, although I don't have anything as expensive as the Schmidt. I sure like the idea of a
    Schimdt, though.

    --
    Frank Krygowski [email protected]
     
  12. Baird Webel

    Baird Webel Guest

    On 1/9/03 23:32, in article [email protected], "Mark Janeba"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    > Baird Webel wrote:
    >
    >> Now if you want to really pay a lot for bulbs, buy an HID light.
    >
    >
    > Very true - but can they burn out? (Having no filament, operating by an arc discharge). (I really
    > don't know the answer - what would the failure mode be besides breakage?)
    >
    >
    > Regards,

    I forget the technical explanation that I heard, something about the arc not lighting at start up.
    Failure is apparently increased by on-off cycles, so HID should be turned on and left on. I've also
    heard of a couple of HIDs that went bad from some moderately rough handling. I get the feeling that
    HID is not the most robust technology, though I've had no problems myself. The $100+ for bulb
    replacement increases my caution considerably.

    Baird
     
  13. Baird Webel wrote:
    >
    > On 1/8/03 10:03, in article [email protected], "Frank Krygowski"
    > <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > > Baird Webel wrote:
    > >>
    > >>
    > >> You can get MR-11 bulbs for less that bike specific ones from Vistalite or NiteRider, but the
    > >> VL and NR bulb are going to be brighter. They are "overvolted" bulbs, designed to be run around
    > >> 5.2 volts instead of 6V, thus when you put 6V into them, they put out more light.
    > >
    > > Are you sure about this? If you want to overvolt, it seems more sensible to put one extra
    > > battery in the pack, rather than commissioning custom bulbs.
    >
    > Yes, I am about as sure as I can be. The Nicad battery packs that come with VL 6V lighting heads
    > are definitely 5 cells at 1.2V per cell.
    >
    > I agree with your sentiments, I wish they had just gone to a 6 cell battery; the only thing I can
    > figure is that they probably did this when they were wanting to continue using the cheap lead
    > acid batteries in with the lighting heads and these can't be raised to 7.2V as easily as the
    > Nicads or Nimh?

    Hmmm. You may be right. Lead-acid cells are about 2 volts apiece, so going from 3 to 4 would get up
    to 8 volts. That's enough overvoltage to _really_ shorten bulb life.

    --
    Frank Krygowski [email protected]
     
  14. jmk wrote:
    >
    > "Frank Krygowski" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    >
    > > Has anyone put a voltmeter on the output of a Vistalight Nightstick while it's running? Is it
    > > really 6.0 volts? Just curious.
    > >
    >
    > I did this morning. It measured 6.3 volts.

    Is that at the battery, or at the bulb? You may have some voltage drop in the wiring that
    you missed.

    --
    Frank Krygowski [email protected]
     
  15. Jmk

    Jmk Guest

    It was right on the battery.

    > >
    > > > Has anyone put a voltmeter on the output of a Vistalight Nightstick while it's running? Is it
    > > > really 6.0 volts? Just curious.
    > > >
    > >
    > > I did this morning. It measured 6.3 volts.
    >
    > Is that at the battery, or at the bulb? You may have some voltage drop in the wiring that
    > you missed.
    >
    > --
    > Frank Krygowski [email protected]

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  16. Baird Webel

    Baird Webel Guest

    On 1/10/03 16:22, in article [email protected], "Ray Heindl"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    > Baird Webel <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >> I forget the technical explanation that I heard, something about the arc not lighting at start
    >> up. Failure is apparently increased by on-off cycles, so HID should be turned on and left on.
    >> I've also heard of a couple of HIDs that went bad from some moderately rough handling. I get the
    >> feeling that HID is not the most robust technology, though I've had no problems myself. The $100+
    >> for bulb replacement increases my caution considerably.
    >
    > In principle, HID should be more robust than halogen because there's no filament to break.
    > However, there's often a long way from principle to reality. Starting tends to be hard on
    > discharge lamps, including HIDs and fluorescents. Also there's a lot more electronics in an HID,
    > including very high voltages, so there's more to fail besides the lamp. There are also various
    > chemical processes going on that can do nasty things to the inside of the lamp.
    >
    > Are the bulbs replaceable by the user, or is the $100 also paying for a lot of labor? Or even for
    > a whole new fixture?

    I'm not sure if it is just bulb or bulb+electronics, but my understanding is if you blow a bulb, the
    replacement is about $100, and it is user replaceable.

    Baird
     
  17. Found MR11 6V 5w at Ace Hardware today. They were intended replacements for Christmas gadgets of
    some sort. They were originally $3.99 but were HALF-PRICE.

    I noticed the metal pins were ever-so slightly shorter than my original VL bulb, but tried it
    anyway...and IT WORKS. The brand name was ""Sightsational Fiber Optics" The pins were ever so
    slightly shorter but I tried them and they worked. ( I did tighten up the socket tab by slight
    bending (squeezing it with a small knife) but I am not sure that it was necessary. Just like a
    tight fit.)

    They have a website www.FiberO.com

    I cannot speak to the brighter bulb issue but this one is bright enough for
    me. At $2.00 instead of $20 or $30, I will take lose the .8 watt and be happy!

    Greenspeed Bill
     
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