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  1. #1
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    Use obnoxious lights

    I'm using a L&M Vis360+ in flash mode, which is a 250 lumen front. It is pretty obnoxious. But it's bright enough that everywhere I see drivers looking up from texting or whatever to see what's going on. That bright flash just grabs the peripheral vision.

    At intersections, or coming up behind parked cars and filling the car with flashing light it gets attention.

    The difference from using just a steady light is significant.

    There are so many distracted drivers - use the most obnoxious flashing light you can.

    And in response to those who don't want to "blind" drivers, please give me just ONE example of an accident caused by a bicycle light. You can't.

    But I can give you thousands of accidents where the driver did not see the cyclist. It's a new day people - distracted drivers are the big risk out there for us now.

  2. #2
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    I'm all for blinding drivers, but riding home last night there were a bunch of guys from a group ride going the opposite direction. They all had obnoxious lights bobbing around on their helmets, and I couldn't see a @#$% thing. If you're in close quarters on a multi-use path it's worth maybe trying to aim a bit, or at least switching off of strobe.

  3. #3
    I Ride for Donuts
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    I use a steady bright light instead of a flashing one because I live in a rural area where it's DARK at night and I depend on it to see where I'm going. Riding into a strobe light in the dark is a weird sensation that I don't like. I guess if I had street lights or other illumination I'd be all about a flashing light.

    What kills me where I'm at is drivers not dimming their high beams when they're coming at me on the 2 lane country roads I ride on. about 1/4 of them get it, and dim the lights. I hate that.
    You have no excuse for driving to work
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    (no excuse for that either)

  4. #4
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    Absolutely - I use a steady light as well, with the super bright flasher on my helmet so I can direct it where I want to.

    Quote Originally Posted by CommuterBoy View Post
    I use a steady bright light instead of a flashing one because I live in a rural area where it's DARK at night and I depend on it to see where I'm going. Riding into a strobe light in the dark is a weird sensation that I don't like. I guess if I had street lights or other illumination I'd be all about a flashing light.

    What kills me where I'm at is drivers not dimming their high beams when they're coming at me on the 2 lane country roads I ride on. about 1/4 of them get it, and dim the lights. I hate that.

  5. #5
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    Got it covered:

    ]

    BrianMc

  6. #6
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    I, too understand the merits of the strobe headlight. I'm using a Magicshine, and the strobe on it is fast enough that it looks more like a flicker from the front end. And yeah, on the MUP I aim down or turn it to steady low. Though where I live now, riding the MUP at night can get you a ticket from the police so full stealth mode would be warranted then.

  7. #7
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    Holy Shift!

    Quote Originally Posted by BrianMc View Post
    Got it covered:

    ]

    BrianMc

  8. #8
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    I run a Serfas True 1000 in strobe mode when it's light out. After dark (or before sunrise) I put it on high as I can't see well with it blinking in the dark. It's definitely an attention getter, I've had people say they thought it was a cop from a ways off, I figure that's a good thing, it'll keep them vigilant.

  9. #9
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    Run two lights on the bar, 1 steady, 1 blinking.

  10. #10
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    I use the flash mode mostly in daylight or when itís not dark enough yet for a headlight to actually show the way. When I got the light and read the instructions it took me a while to figure out what the RLVR mode is. It is the flash mode and is called that because it meets the UK's RVLR (Road Vehicle Lighting Regulations) governing the appropriate intensity and frequency of flashing. I think the intent is to make the flashing tolerable to other road users, but still visible, but I havenít reviewed the actual standard. I enjoy the flashing reflection back off of distant road signs.

  11. #11
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    I find when I'm passing lines of traffic, almost nobody sees me coming and gives me space when I don't have my light, but when I do have it flashing, a fair amount of cars move over so I can get by.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by BrianMc View Post
    Got it covered:

    ]

    BrianMc
    Biggest problem would be having Richard Dryfus chasing you around with an organ playing random 5 note riffs.
    The ridiculousness of cycling clothes increase exponentially in relation to the distance from your bicycle.

  13. #13
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    ^^ Maybe the UFO theme from ET? I just kept upping the ante until they worked.

  14. #14
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    I use a 500mW Cree flashlight strapped on my helmet so I can point it where I'm looking at. I can also immediately point it on the ground in order not to blind other oncoming bikers but can still annoy obnoxious drivers at will.

    I use a red LED blinker at the back of my helmet in order to put it at the highest point on the bike. I also use bar end lights in order for other bikers and drivers to have an idea how wide I am.

  15. #15
    Now, THAT'S gonna hurt!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gundam168 View Post
    I use a 500mW Cree flashlight strapped on my helmet so I can point it where I'm looking at. I can also immediately point it on the ground in order not to blind other oncoming bikers but can still annoy obnoxious drivers at will.
    How do you have it mounted on your helmet?

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oh My Sack! View Post
    How do you have it mounted on your helmet?
    It's snug under a velcro strap with the flashlight strap secured on the back of the helmet in case it falls.

    Use obnoxious lights-2013-09-14_12-17-12_307b.jpg

    Use obnoxious lights-2013-09-14_12-17-29_146b.jpg

    Use obnoxious lights-2013-09-14_12-17-59_890b.jpg
    Last edited by Gundam168; 09-13-2013 at 09:43 PM.

  17. #17
    blet drive
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    love the set up gundam168
    Save a tree & wipe your butt with an owl.
    Thank your local Sierra Club.

  18. #18
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    I'm probably in the minority here it sounds like, but I find blinking lights, of any and all varieties, both obnoxious and dangerous. I've come across many cyclists at night with blinking lights and I've found that that they make it hard to gauge exactly where the cyclist is in relation to everything else. As a result, I end up spending more time assessing where he/she is, and less paying attention to anything else on the road (including other cyclists). Solid lights let me know where they are much more effectively than blinking ones.

    If you want to be noticed, get brighter lights.

  19. #19
    Now, THAT'S gonna hurt!
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    Quote Originally Posted by evandy View Post
    I'm probably in the minority here it sounds like, but I find blinking lights, of any and all varieties, both obnoxious and dangerous. I've come across many cyclists at night with blinking lights and I've found that that they make it hard to gauge exactly where the cyclist is in relation to everything else. As a result, I end up spending more time assessing where he/she is, and less paying attention to anything else on the road (including other cyclists). Solid lights let me know where they are much more effectively than blinking ones.

    If you want to be noticed, get brighter lights.
    Spot on...no pun intended.

    A standard rule in search and rescue ops (maritime/aviation), especially if you're the one being rescued and are wearing a strobe. You have to turn the strobe off and go to a steady burn because the closer the observer is, the more the strobe dances about making it almost impossible to pinpoint its exact location. It's a very confusing situation to the observer.

    I had a very experienced California Highway Patrol officer relate to me the danger of flashing lights on the side of the road. He said first that drunks are drawn to them like a moth to a flame. Even non-impaired drivers are, too. It becomes a simple situation of target fixation. You go where you look. I'd rather a driver not fixate on my strobe and drive right up my ass.

    I'll always stick with a steady lamp. Just go bright!

  20. #20
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    It may *seem* dangerous, but according to the facts, it is *not* dangerous. The fact that you are assessing where I am is exactly the point. If you can't assess where I am and at the same time avoid hitting other cyclists, then please stop driving and cycle.

    I hear this all the time, "I can't see! I'm blind! I'll slam into everyone around me!"

    Yet there is zero evidence of this ever happening from a bicycle light.

    As a cyclist, the risk of blinding a driver and having him or her strike you or someone else is virtually non-existent. The risk of not being seen and being struck is very real indeed.

    It's an annoyance for a few seconds, nothing more. But I'll trade your momentary annoyance for my safety every time, because I don't have a steel cage around me.

    Quote Originally Posted by evandy View Post
    I'm probably in the minority here it sounds like, but I find blinking lights, of any and all varieties, both obnoxious and dangerous. I've come across many cyclists at night with blinking lights and I've found that that they make it hard to gauge exactly where the cyclist is in relation to everything else. As a result, I end up spending more time assessing where he/she is, and less paying attention to anything else on the road (including other cyclists). Solid lights let me know where they are much more effectively than blinking ones.

    If you want to be noticed, get brighter lights.

  21. #21
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    Well if I'm being searched for by a helicopter over the ocean, I'll consider that.

    Otherwise, everything you've said about drunks is complete hearsay. There is no actual evidence of that risk. My real world experience is that people notice me and do not drive into me. Try to find an example of a distracted driver slamming into a cyclist because they were mesmorized by his or her light.

    They should probably retrofit EVERY EMERGENCY VEHICLE ON THE PLANET, as cars are slamming into them at an alarming rate, you know, with their strobe lights and all.

    Enough BS please.

    Quote Originally Posted by Oh My Sack! View Post
    Spot on...no pun intended.

    A standard rule in search and rescue ops (maritime/aviation), especially if you're the one being rescued and are wearing a strobe. You have to turn the strobe off and go to a steady burn because the closer the observer is, the more the strobe dances about making it almost impossible to pinpoint its exact location. It's a very confusing situation to the observer.

    I had a very experienced California Highway Patrol officer relate to me the danger of flashing lights on the side of the road. He said first that drunks are drawn to them like a moth to a flame. Even non-impaired drivers are, too. It becomes a simple situation of target fixation. You go where you look. I'd rather a driver not fixate on my strobe and drive right up my ass.

    I'll always stick with a steady lamp. Just go bright!

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by canuckjgc View Post
    My real world experience is that people notice me and do not drive into me.
    Mine, too. In fact, when I'm running my blinking bike lights, drivers give me MORE space than they do when I'm not running them. It can't be because they're attracted to them like moths.

  23. #23
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    When Iím driving, if I see something that Iím initially not sure what it is, how big it is, where it is going, etc., my reaction is to immediately slow down to figure it out and to give it a wide berth. Granted, this sometimes means I slow down for a littered beer can reflecting in the headlights. If other drivers slow down and pass generously because of my bike blinkie, all the better.

    That said, there will always be the bad, impaired, or distracted driver that will slam into anything in their path (or off of it).

  24. #24
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    I use a blinking headlight on dark/rainy days and a solid headlight at night. On the rear I use a blinking tail light on dark days and a blinking and a solid tail light after dark. The blinking one to draw attention and the solid one to provide a constant reference. Running both also gives redundancy.

  25. #25
    Unhinged Aussie on a 29er
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    Quote Originally Posted by bedwards1000 View Post
    I use a blinking headlight on dark/rainy days and a solid headlight at night. On the rear I use a blinking tail light on dark days and a blinking and a solid tail light after dark. The blinking one to draw attention and the solid one to provide a constant reference. Running both also gives redundancy.
    I do the blinking/solid combo on my bike too. There's a few reasons for this - what's said above, but also that if the battery on one starts to run low, I can switch the blinking one to solid on. Blinking mode typically gets 5x longer battery life than the solid on mode, so it's a good, "Hmm... I really need to replace those batteries" hint.

    I only use solid front lights though. No blinking unless you're really, really up sh*t creek and you're not going to make it home without your battery running flat. I use a dynohub so that's never going to be an issue.

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