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  1. #51
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    Ditto BrianMc. Looks pretty sweet, like you have a cop light bar bouncing down the street after you.
    Phillipians 2:3-8 "...but (Christ) made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant..."

  2. #52
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    I thought the front wheel may be too distracting for me, but after using it I think it would be OK. Most of the mass, (the battery) is located on the hub so it does not take much extra effort to spin it up. I can't tell the differance at all. On a down hill going over 35 MPH I did not feel an imballance. The run time is over 2 hours, I have not tested it longer.
    James
    "My mountain bike needs a new motor; the current one is fat and lazy."

  3. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sanath View Post
    That sounds a bit extreme.
    I've had pedestrians walk out into the street less than 5m in front of me while I'm going about 20MPH. I had 700 lumens flashing light and 700+400 lumens flashlight. I have the hotspot of the 400 lumens aimed such that the center is about 1.5m above ground at about 6m ahead. I don't think it's so much that they didn't see me but rather they consciously choose to ignore me which is just as bad.

  4. #54
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    Very innovative, Fast monte! You have one red and one blue LED bar tied into your spokes, or just a blue one? It looks like a red one at the top, but I only see blue in the light puddle. When the O-ring holding your battery to the hub dries out and breaks (or threatens to break), you don`t have to relace the wheel to put another on, do you?
    Recalculating....

  5. #55
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    There is one blue and one red. At higher speeds they look purple.

    Here is the battery mounted to a hub.



    Here is just the battery and mount.


    Here is the whole thing together.
    Last edited by fast_monte`; 11-30-2012 at 07:58 PM.
    James
    "My mountain bike needs a new motor; the current one is fat and lazy."

  6. #56
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    I just wanted to thank everyone in this thread for their input. While we all take a casual attitude here on the forum, this subject is quite serious. The improvements made on someone's bike due could possibly save their lives. Not only that, this forum appreciates input from all sources . +1

    On a more on topic note, I've been commuting by bike for about 3 years, but only in the last 1.5 years have I had to do serious night time commuting (9+ miles one direction in the dark, sometimes both ways). Amazon had some engineering grade reflective tape for pretty cheap so I picked up a few colors. BikeTiresDirect had a sale for Black Friday so I also scooped up some m232 Monkeylectric spoke lights.

    Previously I used the cheapy NiteEze lights on my spokes due to the concerns I had with night riding so often, but they used watch batteries that didn't last more than a week or two with all the burn time they had. I discontinued their use after many frustrating battery changes.

    I hope these improvements will not only get me noticed but redirect drivers thoughts from "damn bike on MY road" to "that's a damn cool bike" and improve the attitude from my fellow citizens towards me.

  7. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by crazylemurboy View Post
    I just wanted to thank everyone in this thread for their input. While we all take a casual attitude here on the forum, this subject is quite serious. The improvements made on someone's bike due could possibly save their lives. Not only that, this forum appreciates input from all sources . +1

    On a more on topic note, I've been commuting by bike for about 3 years, but only in the last 1.5 years have I had to do serious night time commuting (9+ miles one direction in the dark, sometimes both ways). Amazon had some engineering grade reflective tape for pretty cheap so I picked up a few colors. BikeTiresDirect had a sale for Black Friday so I also scooped up some m232 Monkeylectric spoke lights.

    Previously I used the cheapy NiteEze lights on my spokes due to the concerns I had with night riding so often, but they used watch batteries that didn't last more than a week or two with all the burn time they had. I discontinued their use after many frustrating battery changes.

    I hope these improvements will not only get me noticed but redirect drivers thoughts from "damn bike on MY road" to "that's a damn cool bike" and improve the attitude from my fellow citizens towards me.
    What reflective tape did you buy? I bought some "stealth reflective tape"...it sucks. Barely reflects at all. I want the best/brightest tape on my gear.
    Phillipians 2:3-8 "...but (Christ) made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant..."

  8. #58
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    "Conspicuity Tape" - That's the ticket, stuff better be good, it's priced like it's printed on gold foil.

    IDENTI-TAPE - 3M US DOT Approved Conspicuity Tape

    They carry Iron On "heat transfer" products too:
    IDENTI-TAPE - 3M Scotchlite Heat-Transfer / Iron-on Reflective Tape

    https://www.google.com/webhp?sourcei...w=1112&bih=630
    Phillipians 2:3-8 "...but (Christ) made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant..."

  9. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikeCOLORADO View Post
    What reflective tape did you buy? I bought some "stealth reflective tape"...it sucks. Barely reflects at all. I want the best/brightest tape on my gear.
    JVCC REF-7 Engineering Grade Reflective Tape: 1 in. x 30 ft. (Silver-White) - Amazon.com

    The reviews and price were good so I figured I could gamble $12. Brown Santa paid me a visit yesterday so I'll hopefully have some time on Sunday to try this stuff out.

  10. #60
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    sounds like you're already quite visible. do you need lights that strobe? or do you just need a really bright headlight to light the path? my pollywog LED and bv headlight are in strobe mode all the time. saves battery and alerts the crazies.

  11. #61
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    JUst couse you have a nice light system, visibility system....

    Will not mean you are "SAFE"

    It takes lots of other things to ensure your safety, most importantly route selection.

  12. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffscott View Post
    JUst couse you have a nice light system, visibility system....

    Will not mean you are "SAFE"

    It takes lots of other things to ensure your safety, most importantly route selection.
    absolutely.

    Visibility is only the first part of it (what you should figure out before you leave the house).

    Riding predictably and on the quietest routes with the most space you can find is going to be at least as important, if not more important like jeffscott says.

    Predictable riding is huge, though. Weaving all over the place and rapidly jumping across lanes and such will make all your other safety measures useless. You need to be constantly aware of your surroundings, signal every time you intend to make a move, and make motorists feel comfortable driving around you. Being visible is only a subset of that.

  13. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by mack_turtle View Post
    tried that. it tells me to take the route I am already taking.

    the first half of the trip home is four lanes populated by strip clubs, Ethiopian restaurants full of cabbies, and gay bars. i don't trust the drivers pulling out of those establishments. fortunately, most of it is lit up and there are four lanes. then I have to make a right turn onto a two-lane street with zero shoulder and a wide sidewalk. shortly after that, I have to make a left turn onto a neighborhood street and I have home-free because that last third is easy. there is no traffic light at that last left turn so I have to sit there for several minutes and then sprint across on foot. it's that busy intersection and subsequent stretch of narrow, busy road and that left turn across traffic that freak me out.
    If this way my ride I would never get home.

  14. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by jojen View Post
    sounds like you're already quite visible. do you need lights that strobe? or do you just need a really bright headlight to light the path? my pollywog LED and bv headlight are in strobe mode all the time. saves battery and alerts the crazies.
    I use a bright 700 lumien light mounted to my helmet and a cheap flashing strobe on the bars. I like the strobe because it has cutouts on the side which allows it to be seen from the side. Its gives me a little more confidence traveling through intersections that I'll be seen from traffic entering the roadway.

  15. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by crazylemurboy View Post
    NateHawk, how well does reflective tape hold up long term? I live in hot & wet central FL and I find that most tape tends to peel back after being wetted and soaked with road debris, and this process continues over time. Eventually I have to remove all the tape and start over. Can you recommend a brand of tape that will avoid this?
    I installed some reflective strips on our bikes years ago. Our bikes sat outside under a covered patio for a good solid year exposed to West Texas: heat, dust storms, and flash floods. As a result, a lot of the hardware has started rusting.

    Anyhow, I all but forgot about it until tonight. I was swapping parts tonight and took a picture to show a friend. That's when I saw the reflectors, reacting to the flash. I only used a few pieces on all sides combined with a front and rear light. I just wanted to pass this along to those thinking about using reflective tape.

    (Yellow reflective tape on Swing arm and fork)


  16. #66
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    Apologies to those who have seen these videos before.

    I use some reflective tape and items and have seen my brass fenders return almost as bright a return.

    Riding roads and streets with little lighting other than from cars makes reflective components a lot less effective. The first video has a vehicle at right angles to the bike. The camera aimed tothe right as if the driver were looking that way. The street bends so the bike is seen first riding away then approaching, then coming from the blind side. The first pass is with about 100 lumen flashlight and the old outmoded Planet Bike Superflash. The second is my headlights and helmet on low power and more powerful tail lights, the last with lights on the ankles asa test to add more side visibility. The reflective bots show up about 1 second before the bike passes in front of the vehicle. Underwhelming.


    Uploaded with ImageShack.us


    This is taken in a well lit parking low with a road extending 1/4 form it. I rode fist pass as if at the right side of the near lane,then two other distances and they away and back. Camera at driver height and vehicle lights on low beam as in the video above:


    Uploaded with ImageShack.us

    Again not too helpful. Better to see me late than never, but relying on reflective surfaces over much for safety is unwise.

    Bear in mind that although this is a good camera for night videos it is not the average human eye. So most would see me a bit sooner/better. I suspect it is as good as many older driver's eyes, who have not yet given up night driving.

    I am awaiting rim GLO tape to arrive soon. It phosphoresces with a frog light shining at one point as it spins by. So it is not dependent on car lights. I also have polished brass fenders and gold anodized bottle cages that have shone about as bright as reflective tape.It will be interesting. My errand bike is festooned in reflective tape with the ghetto panniers in place, another good comparison.

    I find it helps me ride defensively knowing how I look from the driver's seat. Of course, as always, that assumes they are looking.

    BrianMc

  17. #67
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    I encountered a poorly lit cyclist tonight as I drove. It was actually pretty shocking how late I saw him. He had a really weak non-blinking taillight and a reflective vest that barely showed up, maybe due to the giant backpack, or perhaps being old or grimy. He was on rte 302 (55mph there I believe), which has some shoulder but squeezes skinnier where there are guard rails, and really dark. When I passed his headlight seemed decent in terms of visibility in the rear view anyway. Charge up your lights, replace your batteries, have a backup, commuters! Hoping I don't read about him in the paper, I'm second-guessing myself for not stopping or something.

  18. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtbxplorer View Post
    I encountered a poorly lit cyclist tonight as I drove. It was actually pretty shocking how late I saw him. He had a really weak non-blinking taillight and a reflective vest that barely showed up, maybe due to the giant backpack, or perhaps being old or grimy. He was on rte 302 (55mph there I believe), which has some shoulder but squeezes skinnier where there are guard rails, and really dark. When I passed his headlight seemed decent in terms of visibility in the rear view anyway. Charge up your lights, replace your batteries, have a backup, commuters! Hoping I don't read about him in the paper, I'm second-guessing myself for not stopping or something.
    That's scary!

    The most under illuminated commuter I saw was a person in a wheel chair wearing dark clothing, black chair/wheels, and absolutely zero reflectors or lights. I only saw a shadow like figure and slowed down thinking it was an animal.

  19. #69
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    Oh, you may want to try monkeylectric.

  20. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by 50calray View Post
    The most under illuminated commuter I saw was a person in a wheel chair wearing dark clothing, black chair/wheels, and absolutely zero reflectors or lights. I only saw a shadow like figure and slowed down thinking it was an animal.
    Makes you wonder if previous unlit night wanderings were the reason for the wheelchair.
    Recalculating....

  21. #71
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    I was amazed in a negative way that reflective vests and bright jackets only show when under street lights at night. In all but very overcast daylight, they are phenomenal. Partly that is a function of how erect a rider is for a behind view of light from low beams at night, No difference from the side.

    Before the bright daytime lights and reflective vest, I frequently had drivers come on me too fast and get too close. Giving them more time or disturbing their phone calls has made such cases very rare. At night a well charged Superflash was almost adequate on the street. Not in a 55 zone, though.

    A Ninja rider blew a 4 way stop and I did not see him until he was straight in front and me rolling. He was lucky I was slow to launch. So the reflectors add a sec (give or take some tenths depending on your speed). They help, but not as much as they look like they should from the side. They should flare for a driver to the rear.

    BrianMc

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  22. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    Makes you wonder if previous unlit night wanderings were the reason for the wheelchair.
    I've seen more than one person in a wheelchair with blinkies and reflective tape. Even one or two with those big orange "slow moving vehicle" triangles on the back.

    The worst nearly invisible ninja I have encountered was when I was in Texas on my way home from the office late (driving). I was driving up the only hill of substance on my route and saw a flash in the lane to my right (I was in the left lane about to make a left turn). In my rearview mirror, I saw a guy on an unlit bmx bike silhouetted against the streetlights at the bottom of the hill. He was probably going at least 20mph down that hill (I know that I frequently break 30mph going down that hill on my commuter bike, occasionally passing cars on the train tracks at the bottom). I didn't see him at all until he was past me and if I was in that right lane, his face would have been in my backseat, most likely.

    After I saw him, I noted a relatively well-lit commuter on the sidewalk going up that hill. That's one spot I was always on the sidewalk, because I'd slow to barely faster than a walk on that climb, and the road had no shoulder. I wonder if the guy on the bmx bike was in the road going the wrong way riding around the guy going up the hill because he didn't want to dismount and walk his bike around the other guy.

  23. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by BrianMc View Post
    I was amazed in a negative way that reflective vests and bright jackets only show when under street lights at night.
    I'll also note that the utility of reflective materials cannot be assessed with flash photography, as much fun as such images are to post (yes, I do it too).

    But not realistic, unless you are absolutely sure that every motorist on your route will have clean, properly-adjusted headlights that are working, every time.

    A lot of the cars on my ride, I'm lucky if they have one dirty DRL on.

  24. #74
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    I've notice that the newer speed limit, etc. signs (the ones that look kind of corrugated up close) are super bright, the reflection from my headlamp is pretty blinding. I don't think it's just because they are new, they seem to be a more reflecty design.

  25. #75
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    ^^ That would up the punch it up. Maybe the 3M stuff.The camera suggests the beam returns to the driver when the bike is about 45 degrees to either side. Narrower when the bike is on the other side of the road suggesting that the brightness factors in when the bike is not on the near side of the road.

    Of course that assumes decent headlights reasonably well aimed, as pointed out. Reflectors are nice and part of a defense in depth. Just more of a last ditch effort.

    BrianMc

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