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Light Recommendations (formerly Front Light For Dark Country) Road Commute

  • 09-10-2009 11:39am
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 1,897 ✭✭✭ keith_d99


    Hi all,

    Cycled for the first time in pitch darkness on my commute home, part of which is through unlit country roads (and lanes) - and yeah it was dark to say the least!

    Anyhow - had a 9 bulb led front light (BBB) - was grand, but couldn't see to far ahead of me as I had to point it fairly down to watch for potholes etc.

    Can anyone recommend a light? Or should I just get a second led light?

    Cheers,
    Keith.
    Tagged:


«13456727

Comments

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 306 ✭✭ godihatethehils


    Budget?


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 20,298 ✭✭✭✭ Jawgap


    Allow me.......

    http://www.fenixtorch.co.uk/led_torches/fenix_tk11_r2.html

    The Fenix torches are pretty good - I've this one and it's great for the pitch black roads.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,897 ✭✭✭ keith_d99


    Budget? Yeah sorry forgot to mention that ... looked on CRC and realised that yeah you can spend BIG money on lights ... probably around the 50 mark


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 4,038 penexpers


    Hub dynamo + B+Q Lumotec IQ Fly = bright light with very good beam dispersal and never running out of batteries again.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 306 ✭✭ godihatethehils


    I have this and it's very good but clocks in at €150.....

    http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/Models.aspx?ModelID=29549


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  • Registered Users Posts: 30,467 ✭✭✭✭ Lumen


    penexpers wrote: »
    Hub dynamo + B+Q Lumotec IQ Fly = bright light with very good beam dispersal and never running out of batteries again.

    Total cost?


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 18,056 ✭✭✭✭ BostonB


    I have the Cateye HL-EL530 along side another 5 led flasher. The HL-EL530 is only just bright enough on a unlit road. A bit brighter would be better if you're on dark roads a lot. I'm only on a completely unlit road for 5 mins or so, as the rest of the my route has street lights. The EL530 does pickup up the path/road better than other 5 led light. I notice cars noticing a bit earlier with it too. But if I was on unlit dark roads a lot I'd get a really serious rechargable light.

    http://www.cateye.com/en/product_detail/345

    I'm not crazy about the CAT mounting bracket. Both of mine aren't rock solid, slowly slipping around, so I have to adjust every so often. I probably wouldn't buy another for that reason. Though maybe theres a knack to it. I have no other problem with my other lights though.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,024 ✭✭✭ CheGuedara


    Those Fenix torches - what is 225 lumens when it's at home? And for comparison sake what would 900 lumens like on the Luu lights be like?

    I've read it's not as straight forward (or even possible) to say it's like a 100 watt bulb or even comparing it to candle power is bright but if 225 lumens is bright enough to cycle home in pitch blackness then something like 900 must be visible from space or capable of cooking food in the beam of or being seen through a solid wall, right?


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 200 ✭✭ Tawfee


    BostonB wrote: »
    I'm not crazy about the CAT mounting bracket. Both of mine aren't rock solid, slowly slipping around, so I have to adjust every so often. I probably wouldn't buy another for that reason. Though maybe theres a knack to it. I have no other problem with my other lights though.

    i've the Cateye EL135 which has the same bracket & i have to agree with you BostonB, it's hard to get it very tight & even though it sounds contradictory, it's also a nuisance to remove it altogether from the bars. Apart from that the EL135 is a good one, surprising how much light it throws out.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 4,038 penexpers




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  • Registered Users Posts: 4,676 ✭✭✭ Gavin


    + spokes + nipples + build cost ?


    http://wiki.boards.ie/wiki/Bike_lights


    edit - ah I see it has spokes and nipples. That's not a bad price then alright


  • Registered Users Posts: 30,467 ✭✭✭✭ Lumen


    CheGuedara wrote: »
    Those Fenix torches - what is 225 lumens when it's at home? And for comparison sake what would 900 lumens like on the Luu lights be like?

    I've read it's not as straight forward (or even possible) to say it's like a 100 watt bulb or even comparing it to candle power is bright but if 225 lumens is bright enough to cycle home in pitch blackness then something like 900 must be visible from space or capable of cooking food in the beam of or being seen through a solid wall, right?

    I have a 240 lumen Fenix, a 700-900 lumen dealextreme jobby, and a Dereelight DBS (the most throwy torch in the world, I think).

    In total light output there's that not much in it (you can tell my removing the reflector and using the point source to illuminate a dark room).

    The most important thing is beam pattern - getting the light where you want it. The problem (or benefit) of the 700-900 lumen LEDs is that they're actually a 4-element array, so are hard to focus for throw - you tend to end up with a floodlight.

    edit: actually no, the most important thing is reliability.


  • Registered Users Posts: 30,467 ✭✭✭✭ Lumen


    These look good value.

    I'm tempted.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,897 ✭✭✭ keith_d99


    Jeez - wide range of replies!! Keep em coming - thanks all!

    No Cateyes on CRC from what I can see - sounds like a good light with a poor bracket!
    Lumen that Busch + Muller looks good alright - you would need to get the charger too - with shipping comes to just under €80


  • Registered Users Posts: 30,467 ✭✭✭✭ Lumen


    keith_d99 wrote: »
    Lumen that Busch + Muller looks good alright - you would need to get the charger too - with shipping comes to just under €80

    It takes 4xAA, so you'd need a recharger (and rechargables) for that if you want to go that route and avoid long term planet/wallet-killing.

    Or there's the Ixon IQ Speed which has a battery pack, but it's more expensive, but you can go the twin headlight route with the one battery pack.

    There's a lot to be said for lights which take standard cells - batteries die eventually.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,897 ✭✭✭ keith_d99


    Busch + Muller looks top bet at the mo

    Anything on CRC or Wiggle (free shipping) worth a punt???


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,557 ✭✭✭ The tax man


    These look good value.
    I'm tempted.


    Think that's the light Rottenhat had on the Dying sow. Impressive light for the money.


  • Registered Users Posts: 15,989 blorg


    CheGuedara wrote: »
    Those Fenix torches - what is 225 lumens when it's at home? And for comparison sake what would 900 lumens like on the Luu lights be like?
    The Fenix on 225 lumens is more than sufficient for cycling along completely dark country roads. To be honest even the 60 lumen mode on these (15hr+ runtime) is sufficient, the 225 is just luxurious. I have gone on long cycles in the dark (across the country) with it and it works very well.

    The Fenix is very reliable, the "900 lumen" DealExtreme jobs more of a gamble. Maybe not a good idea if they were your only light. The DX ones are also generally considered to be overrated compared to the likes of the Fenix- they are brighter but not that much so.

    As Lumen alludes to the issue with these flashlights is that the beam pattern is pretty much circular so it can blind oncoming motorists. In practice I don't find this a major problem although it could be an issue if on a busy road. On quieter roads running it at full intensity I dip it manually after an oncoming motorist dips theirs. To be honest on a busy road you could probably just leave it on the 60 lumen mode, I don't seem to get flashed with it on this mode. In the city there is so much in the way of other light sources I don't think it is so blinding for them, but they certainly notice you.

    I am sure there are better lens patterns but then the price goes up significantly.


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,604 petethedrummer


    Lumen wrote: »
    batteries die eventually.

    "I think batteries are the most dramatic object of all the objects because other things they stop working or they break. But batteries...they die. If you're a battery you're either working or you're dead. That's a **** life."

    Demetri Martin


  • Registered Users Posts: 12,556 ✭✭✭✭ tunney


    jerseyeire wrote: »
    I spent €129 on a great BBB one from my LBS, 1840 lumens (or lux, which ever sounds realistic). Used it in the country side on a spin last week and it worked a treat.
    Alternatively you can get more info here :D

    you got a 1840 lumen BBB light for €129?

    I don't know where to start with this claim....


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  • Registered Users Posts: 15,989 blorg


    Lumen wrote: »
    There's a lot to be said for lights which take standard cells - batteries die eventually.
    Standard AA cells have substantially lower energy density than the Lithium Ion 18650 cells used by the Fenix (cost under $5 each.) These are basically the cells you have inside laptop batteries. Easy to carry spares; carry three and you have 60 hours of night riding on standard mode between charges. That is a fair bit of night riding.


  • Moderators, Sports Moderators, Regional South East Moderators Posts: 11,377 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Captain Havoc


    tunney wrote: »
    you got a 1840 lumen BBB light for €129?

    I don't know where to start with this claim....

    This obviously sounds wrong, I'll delete and double check it later.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 492 ✭✭ one2one


    I cycle to work alot on dark country lanes, picked myself up a head light (helmet light in B&Q) and it works wonders! Only cost €15 - I got two, as they have both White LED and Red LED fitted.


  • Registered Users Posts: 30,467 ✭✭✭✭ Lumen


    blorg wrote: »
    Standard AA cells have substantially lower energy density than the Lithium Ion 18650 cells used by the Fenix (cost under $5 each.) These are basically the cells you have inside laptop batteries. Easy to carry spares; carry three and you have 60 hours of night riding on standard mode between charges. That is a fair bit of night riding.

    Sorry for abiguity, 18650 are "standard cells" in my eyes. I meant rather than proprietary battery packs (like in the Ixon IQ Speed).


  • Registered Users Posts: 15,989 blorg


    Lumen wrote: »
    These look good value.

    I'm tempted.
    That looks like a very good price for that light, the beam pattern is meant to be more suitable for road riding all right.

    The Ixon is definitely not as bright as the Fenix but all it has to be is "bright enough" which from the evidence it is...


  • Registered Users Posts: 30,467 ✭✭✭✭ Lumen


    blorg wrote: »
    The Ixon is definitely not as bright as the Fenix but all it has to be is "bright enough" which from the evidence it is...

    Have you seen them together?

    edit...

    The TK-10 is 91 lux at 10m, according to this. I assume this is turbo mode, which lasts 2-3 hours. I assume the TK10 and TK11 are largely identical.

    The Ixon IQ is 40 lux at 10m, for 5 hours
    The Ixon IQ Speed is 50 lux at 10m, for 5 hours.

    So the Ixons give out about half the lux in the centre spot, but (from the pics) have a larger, more controlled area of illumination.

    Horses for courses.


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,604 petethedrummer


    I'm very close to purchasing the fenix tk11 - Are the mounts good for helmets and handlebars?

    http://www.fenixtorch.co.uk/led_torches/fenix_mount.html

    http://www.thetorchsite.co.uk/LED_Lenser_Bike_Mounts.html

    Looks like I won't need a helmet:
    http://www.fenixtorch.co.uk/led_torches/fenix_headband.html


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,352 rottenhat


    Lumen wrote: »
    It takes 4xAA, so you'd need a recharger (and rechargables) for that if you want to go that route and avoid long term planet/wallet-killing.

    The Ixon IQ comes with a set of rechargeable batteries and they charge in the light - it's an all in one package. The light from it was enough to get me and Honkjelly along the Wicklow coast road (which is overhung by trees and is very dark indeed) without any trouble on the Dying Sow. The only problem I've had with it is that electronics knocked out the wireless reception on my computer, but I've since replaced that with a wired one. It's an excellent light.

    Edit: Ah, I see that Bike24 sell the batteries/lead separately...my apologies, that wasn't an option where I bought the light which was Modern Times, but I see their price is up to £75 now, so €70 from Bike24 is cheaper.


  • Registered Users Posts: 30,467 ✭✭✭✭ Lumen


    rottenhat wrote: »
    The Ixon IQ comes with a set of rechargeable batteries and they charge in the light - it's an all in one package.

    Ah, OK. On bike24 they are doing two versions, one with and one without the batteries and charger. The "with" version is €14 extra.

    "Included in delivery: front light incl. standard handle bar mounting (22 bis 26mm), optional available with 4 accus and controlled charger."

    ISTR reading that you also need an extra widget for clamping to O/S bars, if you have those, @ €5.90.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,897 ✭✭✭ keith_d99


    Rottenhat - how do you mean charge in the light?

    There seems to be 2 versions:

    version: without accus and charger (192QM)
    version: incl. accus and charger (192QMLA)

    Is the charger just a regular charger and 2 AA rechargable batteries?
    Link
    rottenhat wrote: »
    The Ixon IQ comes with a set of rechargeable batteries and they charge in the light - it's an all in one package. The light from it was enough to get me and Honkjelly along the Wicklow coast road (which is overhung by trees and is very dark indeed) without any trouble on the Dying Sow. The only problem I've had with it is that electronics knocked out the wireless reception on my computer, but I've since replaced that with a wired one. It's an excellent light.


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