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Automatic tail lights?

Old 07-26-21, 02:22 PM
  #1  
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Automatic tail lights?

Hey folks.

Are any of you familiar with what’s available in the auto tail lamp market? I’m looking for reccos, ideally of a lamp which is motion-activated, but photosensitive would be acceptable. Also, USB rechargeable is preferred.

I’m familiar with that round lensed, seat rail mounted unit which got started on Kickstarter a few years ago and which now seems to be a staple of the Chinese knockoff repertoire, but that doesn’t suit me for a number of reasons, so I’m hoping there are other options which I’ve not seen yet.

Your suggestions are appreciated. Thanks!
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Old 07-26-21, 08:07 PM
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Cateye Reflex Auto. 2xAAA (<--edit).

https://www.cateye.com/intl/products...ts/TL-LD570-R/

Last edited by tcs; 07-27-21 at 09:43 AM.
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Old 07-26-21, 08:45 PM
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Originally Posted by tcs View Post
Well hot damn! Dead on it, @tcs! Thanks!

I was looking for a fender mountable one, and I see this has a couple of bracket options I might be able to hack for a solution. It’s only $15, too, so I ordered a couple for the kids’ bikes so that I don’t need to remind them to turn on/off, and so I don’t have to stay vigilant in keeping their current USB rechargeables charged up. Sweet!

Again, thank you!
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Old 07-27-21, 12:45 AM
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Originally Posted by tcs View Post
Cateye Reflex Auto. 2xAA.
These are great lights, ran a pair on my commuter, took the front off when I installed a dynamo lightset. The beam is wide and has a large built in reflector.

Only drawback is when someone bumps my bike on the rack they think they need to turn the light off.
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Old 07-27-21, 04:18 AM
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Your generator lights will also be turned on when riding, off when not riding. Of course more work to install.

REELIGHT has a unique magnet powered light. It takes very little energy to make the taillight flash.
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Old 07-27-21, 04:59 AM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
Your generator lights will also be turned on when riding, off when not riding. Of course more work to install.

REELIGHT has a unique magnet powered light. It takes very little energy to make the taillight flash.
The cateye has a nice blink pattern, so supplements the steady secula dyno rear light well.

I was never happy with my reelights (original) as they would vibrate.

BTW these run AAA not AA. Thats my only gripe, AA NiMh would probably last the whole winter without needing a recharge.
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Old 07-27-21, 06:56 AM
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I have a dynamo, too, but I’m really unimpressed with dynamo tail lights in terms of safety. I don’t think they’re very bright compared to rechargeables, and Inthink flashing lighting is more attention-grabbing (and ergo safer) than steady burn.

I also don’t have any internal routing options, and I don’t want more wire clutter.

Thanks for the heads-up on Reelights; checkin’ em out now!

Last edited by chaadster; 07-27-21 at 07:00 AM.
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Old 07-27-21, 09:32 AM
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The Light & Motion Vya Pro is motion activated, USB rechargeable. I think it stays on for 6 minutes before it decides you've stopped moving. I've got it on my commuter. They do make a manually switched version as well.
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Old 07-27-21, 12:33 PM
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https://www.bumm.de/en/products/akku.../329bshr.html? This one and a few others from B&M.
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Old 07-28-21, 01:01 PM
  #10  
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Varia 510 or 515
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Old 07-28-21, 08:40 PM
  #11  
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Originally Posted by Elvo View Post
Varia 510 or 515
Hmm. Those seem to be either phone app- or head unit- initiated starting, though, is that right? I mean, they’ll start when I start ride recording, but they don’t seem to be either photosensitive or motion sensor activated.
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Old 07-29-21, 05:21 PM
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These lights look good! Are they bright? I agree that dynamo lights are not impressively bright. Also, I suspect there is an advantage to blinking lights. On my bikes that have dynamo lights, I run a blinky battery light, and the automatic light seems like a good idea.
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Old 07-29-21, 05:39 PM
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I'm buying one. I have the older version of this and have used it for some time. I like that it is a reflector as well as a blinky. I thought it was a fine rear light; it's even better now.
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Old 07-29-21, 06:43 PM
  #14  
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Originally Posted by chaadster View Post
Hmm. Those seem to be either phone app- or head unit- initiated starting, though, is that right? I mean, they’ll start when I start ride recording, but they don’t seem to be either photosensitive or motion sensor activated.
Or by button on the unit itself, but you're right - they are NOT motion activated. They ARE motion sensitive and flash faster/brighter as a car approaches. But really, unless you use the radar with the head unit they are gross overkill.
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Old 07-29-21, 06:54 PM
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Originally Posted by BianchisOnly View Post
Or by button on the unit itself, but you're right - they are NOT motion activated. They ARE motion sensitive and flash faster/brighter as a car approaches. But really, unless you use the radar with the head unit they are gross overkill.
They’re not gross overkill, they don’t do anything I was looking for at all, so that’s gross under-kill! Automatic function means I don’t have to manually start them— not by pushing a button on the lights, not by pushing a button on a head unit.

For another application the Varia might be cool, but it just doesn’t meet any of the needs I have for the application I started the thread about.
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Old 07-30-21, 03:09 AM
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With multiple lights mentioned it is hard to tell which lights #12 and #13 posts refer to...probably the cateye brand.

Last edited by BikeLite; 08-01-21 at 04:23 AM.
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Old 07-30-21, 08:05 AM
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Automatically turns on when I turn on my Garmin Edge cycling computer. Very bright. USB rechargeable.

https://www.trekbikes.com/us/en_US/e...light/p/23999/
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Old 07-31-21, 09:21 AM
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Originally Posted by prj71 View Post
Automatically turns on when I turn on my Garmin Edge cycling computer. Very bright. USB rechargeable.

https://www.trekbikes.com/us/en_US/e...light/p/23999/
Thanks. Not the kind of automatic functionality I’m looking for, but neat lights, and I should probably get some anyway! Some of my clubmates have them, and I’ve been impressed by the flash action and brightness.
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Old 07-31-21, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by chaadster View Post
They’re not gross overkill, they don’t do anything I was looking for at all, so that’s gross under-kill! Automatic function means I don’t have to manually start them— not by pushing a button on the lights, not by pushing a button on a head unit.

For another application the Varia might be cool, but it just doesn’t meet any of the needs I have for the application I started the thread about.
You don't have to push a button on the head unit to start them. It happens automatically. You just have to use a head unit that's paired to them.
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Old 07-31-21, 03:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
You don't have to push a button on the head unit to start them. It happens automatically. You just have to use a head unit that's paired to them.
You don’t have to start the head unit? I think you do…and that the lights turn on when you start recording a ride, no?

In any case, I’m looking for lights which start themselves when the bike is in motion or at least when it gets dark, but I’d really prefer the former, as it appears the Cateye Reflex Auto is.
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Old 07-31-21, 04:05 PM
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Originally Posted by chaadster View Post
You don’t have to start the head unit? I think you do…and that the lights turn on when you start recording a ride, no?

In any case, I’m looking for lights which start themselves when the bike is in motion or at least when it gets dark, but I’d really prefer the former, as it appears the Cateye Reflex Auto is.
I think the head unit just has to be powered on. It tells me about cars approaching before I start a ride, eg when I'm calibrating my power meter. Most people aren't going to spend hundreds on a head unit and not use it, so it's almost functionally identical to what you're asking for in the sense that you don't have to do anything additional that you wouldn't do anyway.

I'm not telling you to buy the Varia, it sounds like the Reflex Auto may be better for your needs. The only reason I'm posting is to clarify how the Varia works. So that you or anyone else who finds this thread has good info to make your or their choice on.
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Old 07-31-21, 04:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
I think the head unit just has to be powered on. It tells me about cars approaching before I start a ride, eg when I'm calibrating my power meter. Most people aren't going to spend hundreds on a head unit and not use it, so it's almost functionally identical to what you're asking for in the sense that you don't have to do anything additional that you wouldn't do anyway.

I'm not telling you to buy the Varia, it sounds like the Reflex Auto may be better for your needs. The only reason I'm posting is to clarify how the Varia works. So that you or anyone else who finds this thread has good info to make your or their choice on.
Yeah, they work how I thought, which is not all “functionally identical” to what I asked for or need, but I appreciate the effort! I may get a Varia to try out in another application, as I imagine it would be nice to have approaching vehicle info in some applications. Thanks.
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Old 08-02-21, 06:36 PM
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One small downside of automatic lights is that they light up in the car when your bike is in the car. Years ago I had some automatic spoke lights and I was carrying my bike in my car. They flashed blue and red alternately. My peripheral vision saw them in my rear view mirror, and I thought a cop was driving up behind me.
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Old 08-03-21, 12:33 AM
  #24  
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
One small downside of automatic lights is that they light up in the car when your bike is in the car. Years ago I had some automatic spoke lights and I was carrying my bike in my car. They flashed blue and red alternately. My peripheral vision saw them in my rear view mirror, and I thought a cop was driving up behind me.
Haha! Yeah, I can imagine that would be annoying, but these are for my kids’ bikes, so they won’t be transported much, I don’t think. Issue noted, though. Thanks!
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Old 08-03-21, 12:36 AM
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I've only had that impromptu disco party inside the car once. You can turn the cateye reflex lights off.
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