Notices
Electronics, Lighting, & Gadgets HRM, GPS, MP3, HID. Whether it's got an acronym or not, here's where you'll find discussions on all sorts of tools, toys and gadgets.

Helmet Light

Old 02-04-20, 03:59 PM
  #1  
BROOKLINEBIKER
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 314
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 32 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Helmet Light

Hi,
I'm seeking a 500+ Lumens (or close to it) white bike helmet light that flashes, is easily mounted/removed, and *doesn't* use rechargeable batteries. Can anyone recommend one?
BROOKLINEBIKER is offline  
Old 02-04-20, 04:03 PM
  #2  
UniChris
Senior Member
 
UniChris's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2017
Location: NYC
Posts: 1,022

Bikes: 36" Unicycle

Mentioned: 15 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 450 Post(s)
Liked 114 Times in 93 Posts
Originally Posted by BROOKLINEBIKER View Post
Hi,
I'm seeking a 500+ Lumens (or close to it) white bike helmet light that flashes
Please don't!

That much power in a flashing light is just going to be disconcerting to everyone, including yourself.

That kind of brightness is for seeing by, and for that you need steady light.

A blinky to attract attention is far, far less light output.

Last edited by UniChris; 02-04-20 at 04:18 PM.
UniChris is offline  
Likes For UniChris:
Old 02-04-20, 04:49 PM
  #3  
Richard Cranium
Senior Member
 
Richard Cranium's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Deep in the Shawnee Forest
Posts: 2,914

Bikes: LeMond - Gunnar

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 39 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 10 Times in 9 Posts
A flashing helmet light in not very useful.

The single most important aspect of a head-mounted light is the ability to aim it and see objects or dangerous situations that are not directly in front of the bicycle. A focused "spot beam" is generally the best lighting strategy.

For many years I used "Coast" brand light that has an adjustable beam. I would leave it in spot mode - most of the time - and aim it at street signs or the edge of the road to detect animals or object from side streets.
Richard Cranium is offline  
Likes For Richard Cranium:
Old 02-04-20, 06:38 PM
  #4  
VegasTriker
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Sin City, Nevada
Posts: 2,225

Bikes: Catrike 700, Greenspeed GTO trike, , Linear LWB recumbent, Haluzak Horizon SWB recumbent, Balance 450 MTB, Cannondale SM800 Beast of the East

Mentioned: 18 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 344 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 38 Times in 29 Posts
You could be more specific in your request. Is this a daytime running light or used to illuminate your path at night. You don't need a 500 lumen light for a daytime running light.

The only helmet light I have seen up close and one that gets a lot of recommendations is the Lights and Motion Vis 360 ($100) or Vis+ ($180). They are 120 lumens with a 2 hour run time and 250 lumens with a 3 hour run time. That's more than I would want to pay for a running light but it certainly is effective on a fellow rider who uses one. Having a wire dangling from your head to a battery pack is a PIA in my opinion and the battery pack for a 500 lumen light with a decent run time may be heavier than what you would want mounted on a helmet

I don't find a flashing light "not useful". That's what I always use for a running light.
VegasTriker is offline  
Old 02-04-20, 11:12 PM
  #5  
znomit
Zoom zoom zoom zoom bonk
 
znomit's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: New Zealand
Posts: 3,874

Bikes: Giant Defy, Trek 1.7c, BMC GF02, Scott Sub 35

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 218 Post(s)
Liked 86 Times in 49 Posts
What batteries aren't rechargeable?
znomit is offline  
Old 02-05-20, 11:52 AM
  #6  
BROOKLINEBIKER
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 314
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 32 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by VegasTriker View Post
You could be more specific in your request. Is this a daytime running light or used to illuminate your path at night. You don't need a 500 lumen light for a daytime running light.

The only helmet light I have seen up close and one that gets a lot of recommendations is the Lights and Motion Vis 360 ($100) or Vis+ ($180). They are 120 lumens with a 2 hour run time and 250 lumens with a 3 hour run time. That's more than I would want to pay for a running light but it certainly is effective on a fellow rider who uses one. Having a wire dangling from your head to a battery pack is a PIA in my opinion and the battery pack for a 500 lumen light with a decent run time may be heavier than what you would want mounted on a helmet

I don't find a flashing light "not useful". That's what I always use for a running light.
Hi VegasTriker,
I would be using the light to ride at night. I'm a bike commuter in an urban area and wish to avoid being run over. I want a blinking light because in my opinion they make one more visible. I'd been told 500 lumens was needed to really be visible but if I can do the job with less, then that would be fine. My budget for the light is under $80 US.
BROOKLINEBIKER is offline  
Old 02-05-20, 02:04 PM
  #7  
canklecat
Me duelen las nalgas
 
canklecat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Texas
Posts: 10,606

Bikes: Centurion Ironman, Trek 5900, Univega Via Carisma, Globe Carmel

Mentioned: 179 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3358 Post(s)
Liked 735 Times in 504 Posts
The problem with non-rechargeable batteries is nobody is developing better lights for AA or AAA batteries anymore. Not worth the hassle or weight and bulk.

The only good replaceable battery bike headlights I've seen are the Serfas SL-255 (discontinued but still available) and the Busch & Muller Ixon IQ Premium.

The Serfas SL-255 takes 2 AA batteries, isn't too heavy and bulky, has high and low steady and bright flashing modes. Maximum brightness is 255 lumens, as the model implies. But it's a spotlight beam, very narrow. With alkaline batteries it gradually dims so after a few hours the bright setting is barely visible. With NiMH rechargeables it stays brighter through most of the runtime but extinguishes suddenly. I use it only as a backup, sometimes as a loaner on casual group rides because invariably some ninja shows up for nighttime rides without lights.

The B&M lights are very good and adequately bright. But no flashing mode (it's prohibited in Germany where B&M are made, and they don't make a special model for the US). But with a payload of 4 AA batteries, even with lighter weight NiMH it would still be bulky and heavy for a helmet.

If you want to rig up a separate head and tail light system, check out the Cygolite Hotshot taillights, the lightest weight and brightest bang for the buck taillights. They are so piercingly bright when viewed from directly behind it helps nudge tailgating drivers to the side.The light aperture is very narrow, so it's not as visible from the sides. But it's a very effective day/night taillight.

We don't really need 500 lumens for a to-be-seen helmet light. I use small, lightweight USB rechargeable helmet lights that get attention just fine from drivers. Check out the Blackburn 2'Fer, and 2'Fer XL. The best buys are in pairs and often a little cheaper via Amazon. I've used a 2'Fer for going on 4 years now, no problems. Good light. Each unit has four modes: steady white and red, flashing white and red. Just push the button to reach the appropriate mode for head or tail mounting.

The Light & Motion VIS 360 may be the best dedicated, integrated helmet mounted head/tail light system for the money.
canklecat is offline  
Old 02-05-20, 02:37 PM
  #8  
znomit
Zoom zoom zoom zoom bonk
 
znomit's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: New Zealand
Posts: 3,874

Bikes: Giant Defy, Trek 1.7c, BMC GF02, Scott Sub 35

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 218 Post(s)
Liked 86 Times in 49 Posts
An AA powered zebralight would work OK. They have around 300lm.

H53Fw AA Headlamp Floody Neutral White
H53w AA Headlamp Neutral White
znomit is offline  
Old 02-07-20, 12:11 AM
  #9  
polyphrast
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2019
Location: Germany, south of the white sausage equator
Posts: 67
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 39 Post(s)
Liked 27 Times in 18 Posts
Blinking lights make it harder for other bikers/motorists to judge the distance between them and you. So unless you have neon yellow reflective clothing, i would strongly suggest you either use a second steady light or you look for a light with a pulsing function. But this is an issue of your own safety. 500 lm for blinking is overkill, especially at night. It might be useful during daylight, but if a motorist doesn't see you then, he is probably distracted and doesn't pay attention anyway.
polyphrast is offline  
Old 02-11-20, 05:38 AM
  #10  
tomtomtom123
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 791
Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 248 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 81 Times in 55 Posts
Don't use super bright lights on your helmet on urban roads because it will definitely blind oncoming traffic. Using a light with a cutoff beam like stvzo may be better but mounting it so far up will make the beam shine into people's eyes, and these lights are meant to light up the road instead of just to be seen. If you want to see how it's like to be blinded, place the activated light on a window sill or table at eye level and stand maybe 10 to 20 meters away and look directly at the light while in the dark.

I made my own helmet light magnetic mounts.
https://www.bikeforums.net/21207410-post6.html
I used $5 lithium polymer lights that are meant to be seen that have an extremely wide beam so you can see it up to 120 degrees. There was some glare when looking at it directly so I added a translucent PVC privacy film to diffuse the light so it's not uncomfortable to look at in the night. The battery lasts around 3 to 4 hours on low output mode. I wouldn't use flashing mode because it's very distracting and also illegal where I ride.

I originally used topeak headlux lights but the button battery dies in cold weather in under 5 minutes. In warm weather it last a few hours.
https://www.bikeforums.net/21115901-post1.html

Also fixed attachments on helmets have a risk of causing injury in a crash, which was why I made my lights attach magnetically. They will slide off with around 300g pressed against them.

Last edited by tomtomtom123; 02-11-20 at 05:47 AM.
tomtomtom123 is offline  
Likes For tomtomtom123:
Old 02-16-20, 02:25 PM
  #11  
Spoonrobot 
Senior Member
 
Spoonrobot's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 3,447
Mentioned: 63 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1167 Post(s)
Liked 111 Times in 79 Posts
A very bright helmet mounted light had done more to increase passing space and decrease passing speed than anything else, when riding at night. I use a 1200 lumen Zebralight H600w Mk IV, with the temperature controlled brightness it is probably closer to 900 lumens sustained but still it works great. Blinding motorists is an issue created in the minds of Bikeforums posters.

You can use primary (non-rechargeable) CR123A lithium batteries and set the strobe level to 502 lumsn for that model of Zebralight. Runtime is impacted but the brightness should stay the same.
Spoonrobot is offline  
Old 02-16-20, 07:55 PM
  #12  
bpcyclist
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Portland
Posts: 1,093
Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 422 Post(s)
Liked 329 Times in 207 Posts
Originally Posted by Spoonrobot View Post
A very bright helmet mounted light had done more to increase passing space and decrease passing speed than anything else, when riding at night. I use a 1200 lumen Zebralight H600w Mk IV, with the temperature controlled brightness it is probably closer to 900 lumens sustained but still it works great. Blinding motorists is an issue created in the minds of Bikeforums posters.

You can use primary (non-rechargeable) CR123A lithium batteries and set the strobe level to 502 lumsn for that model of Zebralight. Runtime is impacted but the brightness should stay the same.
I am very confused by this post. I used to ride with high-lumen lights (bars and helmet). Have done it for years. One of my bar lights was so bright, motorists would flash their brights at me, unless it was basically pointed at the ground. That light was 1300 lumens. Pedestrians and other cyclists covered their eyes in discomfort, completely blinded. People flipped me off and yelled at me--routinely. I am pretty sure none of that was created in my mind. Pretty sure all that happened, like, a million times.

I now use the Outbound Lighting Road Edition, which has a cutoff, and this is just a non-issue now. Great light. Get one with a cutoff, that would be my counsel.
bpcyclist is offline  
Old 02-16-20, 10:23 PM
  #13  
alo
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Posts: 242
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 100 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 48 Times in 33 Posts
Originally Posted by BROOKLINEBIKER View Post
*doesn't* use rechargeable batteries.
Why don't you want rechargeable batteries? Do you want to continually buy new batteries?

I use rechargeable batteries, so I don't have to continually replace them.

Last edited by alo; 02-16-20 at 10:25 PM. Reason: add info
alo is offline  
Old 02-17-20, 09:15 AM
  #14  
Koyote
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 1,254
Mentioned: 14 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 662 Post(s)
Liked 394 Times in 223 Posts
Originally Posted by Spoonrobot View Post
A very bright helmet mounted light had done more to increase passing space and decrease passing speed than anything else, when riding at night. I use a 1200 lumen Zebralight H600w Mk IV
Originally Posted by bpcyclist View Post
I am very confused by this post. I used to ride with high-lumen lights (bars and helmet). Have done it for years. One of my bar lights was so bright, motorists would flash their brights at me, unless it was basically pointed at the ground. That light was 1300 lumens. Pedestrians and other cyclists covered their eyes in discomfort, completely blinded. People flipped me off and yelled at me--routinely. I am pretty sure none of that was created in my mind. Pretty sure all that happened, like, a million times.
I think these experiences are not contradictory. I do imagine that a very bright light, especially if shone directly toward motorists, will both drive them away from the source and anger them. Of course, it might also endanger them and/or others, if the light is bright enough to temporarily dazzle them.

Note that I'm not really condemning any approach here. In a society that gives little respect to cyclists, we might have to sometimes take extreme measures to protect ourselves. I'm sure that 'taking the lane' irritates some motorists, but I do it regularly. (And if I'm traveling fast enough, it's perfectly legal.)

Last edited by Koyote; 02-17-20 at 09:20 AM.
Koyote is offline  
Old 02-17-20, 10:45 AM
  #15  
noglider 
aka Tom Reingold
 
noglider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: High Falls, NY, USA
Posts: 38,554

Bikes: 1962 Rudge Sports, 1971 Raleigh Super Course, 1971 Raleigh Pro Track, 1974 Raleigh International, 1975 Viscount Fixie, 1982 McLean, 1996 Lemond (Ti), 2002 Burley Zydeco tandem

Mentioned: 464 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6186 Post(s)
Liked 680 Times in 458 Posts
I don't think irritating people by shining bright lights in their eyes is useful for anything, even though it does get their attention. That's different from irritating them by taking the lane, because taking the lane is useful.
__________________
Tom Reingold, tom@noglider.com
New York City and High Falls, NY
Blogs: The Experienced Cyclist; noglider's ride blog

“When man invented the bicycle he reached the peak of his attainments.” — Elizabeth West, US author

Please email me rather than PM'ing me. Thanks.
noglider is online now  
Likes For noglider:
Old 02-17-20, 12:04 PM
  #16  
Koyote
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 1,254
Mentioned: 14 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 662 Post(s)
Liked 394 Times in 223 Posts
Originally Posted by noglider View Post
I don't think irritating people by shining bright lights in their eyes is useful for anything, even though it does get their attention. That's different from irritating them by taking the lane, because taking the lane is useful.
By and large, I agree. But it might be easier for me to agree, given that I live in a fairly small city and only go through a couple decent intersections on my commute...So the motorists have fewer opportunities to run me down.
Koyote is offline  
Old 02-17-20, 03:11 PM
  #17  
canklecat
Me duelen las nalgas
 
canklecat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Texas
Posts: 10,606

Bikes: Centurion Ironman, Trek 5900, Univega Via Carisma, Globe Carmel

Mentioned: 179 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3358 Post(s)
Liked 735 Times in 504 Posts
Anecdotes about whether to use flashing lights, bright lights, helmet lights, etc., will be all over the place because our experiences are different.

I've actually had drivers and passengers roll down their windows and thank me for using extra lights, especially the helmet blinkies. Helps them to see me better. And it helps to judge distance, speed and relative orientations better. Same reason why motorcycles are generally easier to "see" despite being narrow -- the extra lights offer a better handle on quickly estimating distance, orientation, speed, etc. But on a bicycle it's easier to mount lights vertically separate rather than horizontally.

My lights are relatively dim, mainly useful in low light or at night. The helmet blinky tops out at 300 lumens. The rear red helmet light is less than 100 lumens. I have one non-directional blinky with a frantic strobing effect that seems very effective. The other is directional. I set it up so it aims where I look. I've seen drivers brake suddenly when they were about to leap out of a driveway or parking lot into my path, but stopped when my helmet light hit their eyes because I looked at them.

Regarding drivers flashing their lights or honking in annoyance, that only proves some drivers are jackwads. I've ridden with too many of 'em. Mostly guys who fume and cuss the entire time they're driving, nitpicking every single thing every other driver does: "Lookit at that brightlight m*****f****r!" while he has his own high beams and entire bank of illegal fog lights and roll bar lights bright enough to play a double header ball game. Or blasting the horn the split second the light changes. Their annoyance isn't my problem. As long as they don't physically harass or try to hit me, I don't care.

And I don't run those extra lights on the MUP. That's pointless and is dangerous.
canklecat is offline  
Old 02-17-20, 09:23 PM
  #18  
Spoonrobot 
Senior Member
 
Spoonrobot's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 3,447
Mentioned: 63 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1167 Post(s)
Liked 111 Times in 79 Posts
Why would I shine my light directly at motorists or in their eyes? The light is mounted right side, slightly below the fork crown and aimed to project the hotspot ~75 meters ahead. From the front it appears visually similar to a LED or HiD car headlight. My helmet light projects about half as far and almost never ends up illuminating the passenger compartment of passing or oncoming cars. If it does it's incidental, same as HiD lights cresting a rise before the auto-leveling feature activates.

I've ridden around 150 hours per year at night, the past 7 years, and the only feedback I've ever received has been non-verbal (increased passing distance, decreased speed), or positive - "You're lights are great I saw you from way far away" & "I thought you were a motorcycle haha". In my experience, motorist anger is almost always directed at cyclists because of the activity itself, not the behavior of the participant. Fully half my negative interactions (all during daylight with no lights on) last year were unprovoked verbal assaults from motorists directed at me while riding along a separate bikeway.

As I said:

A very bright helmet mounted light has done more to increase passing space and decrease passing speed than anything else, when riding at night.
But as noted above, individual experience varies so greatly, mainly because the vast majority of cyclists night ride in limited circumstances. Stay bright, stay safe.

Last edited by Spoonrobot; 02-17-20 at 09:52 PM.
Spoonrobot is offline  
Likes For Spoonrobot:
Old 02-18-20, 10:54 AM
  #19  
woodcraft
Senior Member
 
woodcraft's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Nor Cal
Posts: 4,788
Mentioned: 14 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1273 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 256 Times in 156 Posts
Originally Posted by BROOKLINEBIKER View Post
Hi,
I'm seeking a 500+ Lumens (or close to it) white bike helmet light that flashes, is easily mounted/removed, and *doesn't* use rechargeable batteries. Can anyone recommend one?

If you pass me with that- 500 lumens flashing at night, I will swear at you,

and probably others will as well.
woodcraft is offline  
Likes For woodcraft:
Old 02-18-20, 11:30 AM
  #20  
Leisesturm
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 4,295
Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1509 Post(s)
Liked 141 Times in 108 Posts
The o.p. said they were a 'commuter'. My definition of a commuter is someone who is on the bike 3x/wk or more. I also assume that their one way trip from home to the worksite is 1mi - 3mi or more. I don't know of a high output headlight that wouldn't require fresh batteries every week and that just isn't environmentally condonable. I also agree that the top of helmet location is prime real estate for mounting a light to see with. It will have secondary benefit of making you seen but I really can't get down with all the fear of being hit. If that is your concern then take the bus! Nothing worse than a fearful cyclist working on their self fulfilling prophecy outcome. A cyclist is AS likely to hit something and be seriously injured or killed by that as they are of being hit and seriously injured or killed. Wouldn't it really suck to be so concerned about making yourself seen that you neglected the vital importance of being able to see well enough in the dark to avoid a deadly road hazard? I think so.
Leisesturm is offline  
Old 02-18-20, 12:21 PM
  #21  
Koyote
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 1,254
Mentioned: 14 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 662 Post(s)
Liked 394 Times in 223 Posts
Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
The o.p. said they were a 'commuter'. My definition of a commuter is someone who is on the bike 3x/wk or more. I also assume that their one way trip from home to the worksite is 1mi - 3mi or more. I don't know of a high output headlight that wouldn't require fresh batteries every week and that just isn't environmentally condonable. I also agree that the top of helmet location is prime real estate for mounting a light to see with. It will have secondary benefit of making you seen but I really can't get down with all the fear of being hit. If that is your concern then take the bus! Nothing worse than a fearful cyclist working on their self fulfilling prophecy outcome. A cyclist is AS likely to hit something and be seriously injured or killed by that as they are of being hit and seriously injured or killed. Wouldn't it really suck to be so concerned about making yourself seen that you neglected the vital importance of being able to see well enough in the dark to avoid a deadly road hazard? I think so.
First point: Most bike headlights and taillights use integrated rechargeable batteries which are good for 400+ full discharge cycles.

Second point: So, if I am commuting on a bike, I should just hope for the best and not take reasonable actions to protect myself?

Third point: Protecting yourself against being hit, and effectively illuminating your path through the dark, are not mutually exclusive.
Koyote is offline  
Old 02-18-20, 01:46 PM
  #22  
bpcyclist
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Portland
Posts: 1,093
Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 422 Post(s)
Liked 329 Times in 207 Posts
Originally Posted by Spoonrobot View Post
Why would I shine my light directly at motorists or in their eyes? The light is mounted right side, slightly below the fork crown and aimed to project the hotspot ~75 meters ahead. From the front it appears visually similar to a LED or HiD car headlight. My helmet light projects about half as far and almost never ends up illuminating the passenger compartment of passing or oncoming cars. If it does it's incidental, same as HiD lights cresting a rise before the auto-leveling feature activates.

I've ridden around 150 hours per year at night, the past 7 years, and the only feedback I've ever received has been non-verbal (increased passing distance, decreased speed), or positive - "You're lights are great I saw you from way far away" & "I thought you were a motorcycle haha". In my experience, motorist anger is almost always directed at cyclists because of the activity itself, not the behavior of the participant. Fully half my negative interactions (all during daylight with no lights on) last year were unprovoked verbal assaults from motorists directed at me while riding along a separate bikeway.

As I said:



But as noted above, individual experience varies so greatly, mainly because the vast majority of cyclists night ride in limited circumstances. Stay bright, stay safe.
Look, the design of car headlights and the design of virtually all bike headlights is just completely different. They are not remotely comparable, really in any way. The only bike headlights that do somewhat resemble car lights are the German STVZO lights and the Outbound Lighting lights, the latter of which was designed by an automotive lighting designer. It is basically a well-designed, mini-car light for bicycles. Nothing at all like the average bike light.

The other thing that I personally feel is being missed here is the idea that you have to "aim" your light at oncoming traffic to blind them. If you are a using a legit 1000ish lumen, typical bike light--and I have five of them--those lights are so bright, if their claimed lumen output is actually accurate, that pointing them anywhere other than at the ground is going to irritate and blind people. If you have not experienced this, then I suggest that your light is not nearly as bright as you think it is or, you are just not aware of how others are experiencing your light.
bpcyclist is offline  
Likes For bpcyclist:
Old 02-18-20, 01:57 PM
  #23  
Leisesturm
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 4,295
Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1509 Post(s)
Liked 141 Times in 108 Posts
Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
First point: Most bike headlights and taillights use integrated rechargeable batteries which are good for 400+ full discharge cycles.

Second point: So, if I am commuting on a bike, I should just hope for the best and not take reasonable actions to protect myself?

Third point: Protecting yourself against being hit, and effectively illuminating your path through the dark, are not mutually exclusive.
You are not the o.p., the o.p. specifically requested lights that are not rechargeable. Next, you are deliberately taking my words out of context. Why? Lastly, you cannot protect yourself against being hit with lights or clothing. I am not going to debate it. I wear safety gear and mount the legal minimum of safety equipment so that in the unlikely event that I am hit I have complied with the law as it pertains to cyclists sharing the road with motorists. If a motorist sees you they will probably not hit you. Chances are good you drive. How much, how bright, and how extreme does a cyclists kit have to be for you to see them? Not very, right? Do you really need to see the cyclist a half mile away or will 200' (a city block) do the trick? In the worst case scenario a completely unlit cyclist will be seen at 50' and that is enough to avoid hitting them. The FEAR is unwarranted.
Leisesturm is offline  
Old 02-18-20, 04:51 PM
  #24  
Koyote
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 1,254
Mentioned: 14 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 662 Post(s)
Liked 394 Times in 223 Posts
Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
You are not the o.p., the o.p. specifically requested lights that are not rechargeable. Next, you are deliberately taking my words out of context. Why? Lastly, you cannot protect yourself against being hit with lights or clothing. I am not going to debate it. I wear safety gear and mount the legal minimum of safety equipment so that in the unlikely event that I am hit I have complied with the law as it pertains to cyclists sharing the road with motorists. If a motorist sees you they will probably not hit you. Chances are good you drive. How much, how bright, and how extreme does a cyclists kit have to be for you to see them? Not very, right? Do you really need to see the cyclist a half mile away or will 200' (a city block) do the trick? In the worst case scenario a completely unlit cyclist will be seen at 50' and that is enough to avoid hitting them. The FEAR is unwarranted.
You are correct regarding the OP’s statement about batteries… I missed that and I apologize for the mistake. Though hopefully the OP will consider one of the many excellent lights with internal rechargeable batteries. However, even if the OP uses a light which requires new batteries each week, that is still better for the environment than driving a car – if it comes down to that trade off.

As for the rest of it, I do not think that I misunderstood your post, nor did I take anything out of context – to avoid that I did quote your entire post. The problem is that you made a pretty wild assertion without offering any evidence. You summarized it again, above: ”Lastly, you cannot protect yourself against being hit with lights or clothing. I am not going to debate it.” If you do have evidence to support this, I’d love to see it; but without such evidence, your assertion is not very convincing. In fact here is evidence to the contrary, and here is some more. These are just the first two articles that I found with a quick and easy Google search… But there’s plenty of other evidence to make the same point. Note that these are articles from peer reviewed journals – the gold standard.
Koyote is offline  
Old 02-19-20, 12:49 PM
  #25  
polyphrast
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2019
Location: Germany, south of the white sausage equator
Posts: 67
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 39 Post(s)
Liked 27 Times in 18 Posts
Originally Posted by Spoonrobot View Post
Blinding motorists is an issue created in the minds of Bikeforums posters.
It is myth (which unfortunately too many cyclists believe), that lights with a conical beam pattern (i.e. lights without a cut-off) do not blind motorists (or other cyclists or pedestrians). I guess you never gave your light-setup to a friend and made a self test with respect to blinding, haven't you? There is a very solid and good reason why passing beams/dipped beams in car lights have a cut-off. It is near on impossible to adjust a conical beam shaped light in such a way that you don't blind others. and if you do adjusted it non-blinding, the first 2-4 m in front of your bike are heavily overexposed, rendering the high power light useless...
Originally Posted by Spoonrobot View Post
Why would I shine my light directly at motorists or in their eyes? The light is mounted right side, slightly below the fork crown and aimed to project the hotspot ~75 meters ahead.
If this is a conical light, it is inevitable that it blinds others. Unless the light has a very narrow beam angle (say <10°), but that'd make it mostly useless for cycling.

Originally Posted by canklecat View Post
I've actually had drivers and passengers roll down their windows and thank me for using extra lights, especially the helmet blinkies. Helps them to see me better. And it helps to judge distance, speed and relative orientations better. Same reason why motorcycles are generally easier to "see" despite being narrow -- the extra lights offer a better handle on quickly estimating distance, orientation, speed, etc.
Did you mean that two lights make a cyclist better visible and help others to judge distance and speed? Or did you mean blinking lights helps others to judge the distance to the blinking light source? The latter is false. One needs a constant light source to be able to judge speed and distance. Blinkies only attract attention, but make it very hard for others to judge speed and distance of the blinking object.

Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
I also agree that the top of helmet location is prime real estate for mounting a light to see with.
That is usually true when trail-riding, but not necessarily when riding on streets, unless they are very curvy. A light for commuting on roads/bike paths is best mounted on the fork or bar and should have a cut-off.

List of possible cut-off lights with decent, usable output that helps to create respect from car drivers: Ravemen PR and CR series, Fenix BC25R and BC35R, Outbound Lighting Focal Road, Lupine SL, SL-F and the coming SL-X, Supernova M99 Series, B&M Ixon Space (Lezyne also has some pretty ok StVZO lights, but i don't know whether those are sold in the US/Canada)

Last edited by polyphrast; 03-13-20 at 12:12 PM. Reason: spelling
polyphrast is offline  
Likes For polyphrast:

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.