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  1. #1
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    All Guns Blazing.

    The master (AKA - Troutie works his magic) - No matter how you look at it, Troutie does produce some amazing goods..

    Here is a daylight shot of the tail end of a ride I did this weekend.


    Now here is my night time shoot of the same place.


    Exposure is as per rules (F4 @ 6 W/B)

    Bike is standing (with support) in the middle of the road. Camera is standing on the kerb to the left of the bike and has used the 25mm of its 14mm-42mm settings (Camera =Olympus E-P2)

    For the reference the five positions (taken from where the bike was on the night), marked in red (A-E) are as follows. Measurements taking using a Garmin 605.

    A: The drain 65ft (19.8mts)
    B: The driveway 235ft (71.6mts)
    C: 1st reflective sign 400ft (121.9mts)
    D: 2nd reflective sign 550ft (167.7mts)
    E: Last of the cats eyes 700ft (213.4mts

    The damage was done by this handful of 14 LEDS.. (2x bar lights plus a helmet light) which consist of a mixture of XPEs, XPGs and XLMs


    Troutie, I do not think anyone can argue with your skills, thank you.. and to be fair with the total cost of what you have sold me has come to less than the price I paid for my Lupine Wilma, it has to be called a bargain.

  2. #2
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    I think that the camera should have been placed in spot C
    CNC LED light housing for DIY projects

  3. #3
    meep meep !!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by EFMax
    All Guns Blazing
    My philosophy in a nutshell.

    I want my bicycle to be visible from space, on a cloudy night.

  4. #4
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    Don't stop until you set the asphalt on fire eh?

  5. #5
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    If I stopped making my own lights, I think Id start buying trouties setups. His look way nicer than mine, and are very minimalist. But that means I couldnt spend as much time in my garage drinking barleywine, so that might be a bad thing.
    QUOTE from MTBR.COM: You have given Brewtality too much Reputation in the last 24 hours, try again later.

  6. #6
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    I have had some weird comments from some local people but my argument is simple, during the day, I run one light at its lowest setting so cars can see me - and it works very well, I have an equally as bright rear light and cars and trucks give me plenty of space - which I appreciate.

    At night, I like to ride off road and often go to some mad places with some twisty and nasty decents, my fav spot in woods has a 800mt down hill section that can see me reaching speeds of around 60ft/sec - when on road I also have a fav decent that see me reaching speeds of 60ft/sec (just over 40mph) and when something runs out (or pulls out) in front of you at night or some little bastard has pulled a log into your down hill path just for a laugh, you need as much information as possible and you need it as fast as possible and at those sort of speeds, reaction times need to be as quick as possible, so everything helps - well thats my excuse for going OTT on both my lights and my brakes.. and its fun

  7. #7
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    EFMax,
    I like your philosophy and I subscribe to it as well.
    I've got about 2200 lumens on the bars and close to 1000 on the helmet and find myself out-riding my lights quite a bit.


    My current setup is a dual 3up XPG driven at 1300mA on the bars.
    and dual XPG with reginas driven at 1500 mA on the helmet.

    After riding with this setup for a while, there are several times I feel like I may need to go with 3 XML driven hard on the bars and 2XML's throwing far on the helmet.

    It may sound crazy to some people.
    I have perfect vision and good night vision as well.

    Don't get me wrong, my setup is great 90% of the time, but it's that other 10% I really worry about.

    I like to ride fast, and usually take the hard lines. Don't get huge airtime or anything. But nothing is funner than descending so fast your eyes start watering......= )
    Look, whatever happens, don't fight the mountain.

  8. #8
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    Thanks EFMax you have started my day off with a good laugh and a warm rosy glow .

    thats some serious lumen power you have on that bike I dont suppose you have seen what it is like coming towards you must be like the police chopper with its night sun on

  9. #9
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    Its funny you should say that Chris as when we did those night shots, we passed a couple of police cars, at first they were parked up and we could see their reflective signage a mile away, then they came passed - very slowly - and they gave us the once over but as they drove away (the little boy in me) had to put my lights back on full, they must have been a good 100mts away and they put on their rear fogs at me, then their flashing blues and then they slowed down.. I got the message - they did not stop but if they had, I would have given them your address..

    In all seriousness though, I do not ride with them on to dazzle and always have them at their low setting when on road and traffic is around (and even then it is just the 7UP on low) and that is plenty to let others see me.

    Later this week I will go over to the woods and play..
    Last edited by EFMax; 05-03-2011 at 12:18 AM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by savagemann
    EFMax,
    I like your philosophy and I subscribe to it as well.
    I've got about 2200 lumens on the bars and close to 1000 on the helmet and find myself out-riding my lights quite a bit.


    My current setup is a dual 3up XPG driven at 1300mA on the bars.
    and dual XPG with reginas driven at 1500 mA on the helmet.

    After riding with this setup for a while, there are several times I feel like I may need to go with 3 XML driven hard on the bars and 2XML's throwing far on the helmet.

    It may sound crazy to some people.
    I have perfect vision and good night vision as well.

    Don't get me wrong, my setup is great 90% of the time, but it's that other 10% I really worry about.

    I like to ride fast, and usually take the hard lines. Don't get huge airtime or anything. But nothing is funner than descending so fast your eyes start watering......= )
    I must confess to being greedy, more is better, especially off road. I think all of my lights are driven at 1000mA - the three XML's maybe different as I don't know what Chris set them at - and of course there is the additional weight - which I have got use to (battery wise) as the two bar lights each have a 6.6Ah battery and a the helmet a 4.4Ah - but run times are GOOD.

  11. #11
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    as sent out the 7 up was driven at. 750 ma. but I think you have altered the settings
    the mini was at 1000ma
    and the xml beasty is at the full 3 amps so may get a tad warm somtimes

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by troutie-mtb
    as sent out the 7 up was driven at. 750 ma. but I think you have altered the settings
    the mini was at 1000ma
    and the xml beasty is at the full 3 amps so may get a tad warm somtimes
    Will feedback to you later in the week via email, some thoughts and ideas but overal the big boy is BRIGHT and screams "respect".

  13. #13
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    on the Road, these would all fail , because of safety issues.

    Lets say you got tons of lights, and you could incinerate stray Insects in you path.
    Well , if the beam is not shaped, it would blind the oncoming driver, he won't see where he is going, and at some point you going to be a hood-ornament.
    Truth is, you don't need ton's of LED's, a single bare LED is already there.
    The bare LED visible, because of reflector use, is already thousands of time brighter,
    then the eye can adjust.
    That's why in cars, the bulb is not visible direct, they put a shield on, to avoid that.
    And , Yes it looses lumens. In some cases more then 50%.
    Then the Beam needs to be shaped, and aimed.
    Take a look at standard old, low-beams. Ether the bulb, or the reflector design, has some sort of shield, so you can't see the bulb wire.

    Most of it even applies for off-road. You'd say why ? Who cares ?

    Well, ever been shined, flashed in the eyes, by just a flashlight ?
    How about multiple times? Get annoying fast,eh ?
    How about , you are on a singletrack, with trees, rocks, and a 800 foot drop;
    and another rider, or hiker , blinds you !?
    You going to see stars, one way or the other.

    If it hurts, there is a reason. LED's even small ones, can damage the Retina.
    Now with even more powerful LED's, you'll see little warnings on them, like the Lasers.

    Oh, you said, visible from space ?
    A simple Laser-pointer will do. And those already are outlawed, to be pointed in the sky,
    because pilots, don't like to be blinded, they have to ride a single-track too.
    ---
    Ok, we still need more light, agree. Seen some kids, yesterday, no lights ,...
    For MTB, 2x 500 lm+, and a helmet 300+lm,
    that what there is enough light to spread and shape the light, like flood, etc,...
    For example, take a single 55W low-beam, ~1500 lm(+/- 400),
    some want Two, and they better be HID.
    Whatever amount of light you add, can't be burning Eyes, Retinas, etc. , should be the goal. ....just some thoughts, rambling,...
    --
    Oh, one more thing. Riding behind someone, stuck on the up-hill singletrack,
    and being flashed by some ultra-bright Blinky , while you try to see where you going,
    is really ultra annoying. For MTB night riding, and tail lights, don't really need superbright,
    or blinking tail-lights. What you think ?
    Even with some of the new cars, you're stuck right behind them, and the brake lights are killer. Think they should put a limit on those too.
    --
    Daylight running lights, good Idea. Not just for road riding, but also for Off-Road. In the Woods the light conditions are changing, and having minimum Illumination,
    has a benefits. Yes, you going to get funky looks, from others,... look at this geek, riding at daytime with night lights,....
    cheers, Rob

    Quote Originally Posted by EFMax
    Its funny you should say that Chris as when we did those night shots, we passed a couple of police cars, at first they were parked up and we could see their reflective signage a mile away, then they came passed - very slowly - and they gave us the once over but as they drove away (the little boy in me) had to put my lights back on full, they must have been a good 100mts away and they put on their rear fogs at me, then their flashing blues and then they slowed down.. I got the message - they did not stop but if they had, I would have given them your address..

    In all seriousness though, I do not ride with them on to dazzle and always have them at their low setting when on road and traffic is around (and even then it is just the 7UP on low) and that is plenty to let others see me.

    Later this week I will go over to the woods and play..

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by rschultz101
    on the Road, these would all fail , because of safety issues.

    Lets say you got tons of lights, and you could incinerate stray Insects in you path.
    Well , if the beam is not shaped, it would blind the oncoming driver, he won't see where he is going, and at some point you going to be a hood-ornament.
    Truth is, you don't need ton's of LED's, a single bare LED is already there.
    The bare LED visible, because of reflector use, is already thousands of time brighter,
    then the eye can adjust.
    That's why in cars, the bulb is not visible direct, they put a shield on, to avoid that.
    And , Yes it looses lumens. In some cases more then 50%.
    Then the Beam needs to be shaped, and aimed.
    Take a look at standard old, low-beams. Ether the bulb, or the reflector design, has some sort of shield, so you can't see the bulb wire.

    Most of it even applies for off-road. You'd say why ? Who cares ?

    Well, ever been shined, flashed in the eyes, by just a flashlight ?
    How about multiple times? Get annoying fast,eh ?
    How about , you are on a singletrack, with trees, rocks, and a 800 foot drop;
    and another rider, or hiker , blinds you !?
    You going to see stars, one way or the other.

    If it hurts, there is a reason. LED's even small ones, can damage the Retina.
    Now with even more powerful LED's, you'll see little warnings on them, like the Lasers.

    Oh, you said, visible from space ?
    A simple Laser-pointer will do. And those already are outlawed, to be pointed in the sky,
    because pilots, don't like to be blinded, they have to ride a single-track too.
    ---
    Ok, we still need more light, agree. Seen some kids, yesterday, no lights ,...
    For MTB, 2x 500 lm+, and a helmet 300+lm,
    that what there is enough light to spread and shape the light, like flood, etc,...
    For example, take a single 55W low-beam, ~1500 lm(+/- 400),
    some want Two, and they better be HID.
    Whatever amount of light you add, can't be burning Eyes, Retinas, etc. , should be the goal. ....just some thoughts, rambling,...
    --
    Oh, one more thing. Riding behind someone, stuck on the up-hill singletrack,
    and being flashed by some ultra-bright Blinky , while you try to see where you going,
    is really ultra annoying. For MTB night riding, and tail lights, don't really need superbright,
    or blinking tail-lights. What you think ?
    Even with some of the new cars, you're stuck right behind them, and the brake lights are killer. Think they should put a limit on those too.
    --
    Daylight running lights, good Idea. Not just for road riding, but also for Off-Road. In the Woods the light conditions are changing, and having minimum Illumination,
    has a benefits. Yes, you going to get funky looks, from others,... look at this geek, riding at daytime with night lights,....
    cheers, Rob
    To be fair, most of your post can be address by common sense and while some people may not have much, there is no excuse for bad road manners, be them from a car driver or a biker.

    On the road, from the front (where it seems as if this where most accidents come from) then a rider is best served during the day by "blinding" flashing lights at the front and a steady rear red light - at night on the same roads then the reverse - steady front light that is not too much and a flashing rear light.

    Off road, then manners must be with you, I would expect anyone coming towads me to show respect be you a car driver or a biker (on or off road).

    But when no one else is around or you are in numbers where all is behind you, then just go for it (you can never have too much power up front) and the rear light does not need to blink but I would still keep mine on, as cars never turn theirs off on the roads.. as for OTT car lights - history and research has shown, that many drivers are very slow to react to brake or fog lights so the brighter they are, the more attention they grab.. I know with my lights when I am on the road, I get a lot of respect (in terms of width space around my bike) from car drivers - especially compared to those who ride with no lights at all.

  15. #15
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    I always wondered why it is called common sense. as sense on the roads is not too common

    With power comes responsability

    funny only the other day when I was returning from a beamshot trip on dark narrow country lanes saw these lights a fair way off and new they were a gaggle of bikers all had their lights on full power. or so it seemed. to me. I had pulled in to a passing place because I was dazzled. so held the quad xml out the window on full untill they dropped the power they were not very happy to be outgunned

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by troutie-mtb
    they were not very happy to be outgunned
    they'll know not to mess with you again, I bet!

    EFMax, I think the only time you can have too much light off road is if it blanches out trail detail or gets scattered back from vegetation at the side of the track.

    I had a funny story about testing out my new single XP-G commuter light. First time I used it at night I had a ******* student pull out on me (on the phone) then a mile down the road had several cars beep/ flash me because my light was supposedly too bright! Can't win.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by savagemann
    Don't get me wrong, my setup is great 90% of the time, but it's that other 10% I really worry about.

    I like to ride fast, and usually take the hard lines. Don't get huge airtime or anything. But nothing is funner than descending so fast your eyes start watering......= )
    Reading back through this last bit made me smile - then it made me think - where we ride off road, there is something which is just totally insaine about riding down a hill, even if it is a straight hill on loose rolling rubble and trees around you with your eyes (even when protected) fighting to let you keep them open and all of your senses are just on high alert.. I fully understand where you are coming from - for some reason, even when you know the terrority, just because it is at night, it feels better..

    I tried riding my girlfriends bike the other day, she has a single Lupine Wilma on her bars and it's a good light and plenty enough for her (while her confidence builds) but I felt scared riding her bike fast over the same area..

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by rschultz101
    ....Oh, one more thing. Riding behind someone, stuck on the up-hill singletrack,
    and being flashed by some ultra-bright Blinky , while you try to see where you going,
    is really ultra annoying. For MTB night riding, and tail lights, don't really need superbright,
    or blinking tail-lights. What you think ?
    Even with some of the new cars, you're stuck right behind them, and the brake lights are killer. Think they should put a limit on those too.
    --
    Daylight running lights, good Idea. Not just for road riding, but also for Off-Road. In the Woods the light conditions are changing, and having minimum Illumination,
    has a benefits. Yes, you going to get funky looks, from others,... look at this geek, riding at daytime with night lights,....
    cheers, Rob
    rschultz I argee 100% about the part about being stuck behind a car with the new LED rear brake lights. They are a super annoyance. And yes, I see no reason to use a super bright blinky on trails or on group rides. If I ever did do a group night ride I would absolutely hate to be behind someone using a PBsuperflash. It would be a real good idea if the makers of rear bike lights would incorporate a super-LOW setting for group rides.

    My thoughts on Mega- bike lights for the road: Yeah it's nice to be able to see a dime at 50ft but it is a bit of over-kill. On my favorite night ride I do a short road ride before jumping off into the woods. I get a real fast 1.5 mile descent before leveling out to go over a quarter mile long bridge. Since I'm on a MTB top speed is somewhere around 35mph. Even before getting my newer lights ( triple XPG ) I never felt like I was out riding my lights ( Dinotte 600L back then ) except when I hit top speed. For top speed I used my MCE thrower torch on the helmet ( or quad XR-E helmet light ) to compliment the bar light and I was good. Even so, on the road you have the same responsibilities as the cars to not blind on coming traffic. That means powering down when you don't want to ( no matter how fast you are going ) That also means you might have to slow down...I know a real bummer but it's the same as if you were driving a car. You want to let those high beams blast so you can see the pot holes, debris or wildlife jumping out at you BUT you still have to consider blinding on coming traffic which is not a good thing.

    Bright lights on the road ( front and rear ) have their place if and when you know how to use them. For the record I don't have anything near as bright as what was mentioned in the OP but with my triple XP-G on the bars and XM-L thrower torch on the helmet I've never felt I could outride the light ( even on a road bike going down a hill ). Besides at that speed my eyes start to water anyway which, need I say, doesn't help with seeing things riding at high speeds.

    Once again, as had been said likely many times before, LED bar lights with wide beam patterns are not good for the road. This is why I also use a torch on the bars. Torches tend to have more narrow beam patterns. That means you still get some decent throw even on low settings. Doing this will keep the LED nay-sayers at bay besides it just doesn't pay to pi*s off other people on the road.

  19. #19
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    It is good to hear the comments of others - I must say, that to date, I have not actually seen any one on the road with bright or dazzling LED's on their bike and my OP picture was done mainly to make use of the reflective white lines and cats eyes as a means of showing how powerful the lights are - I would hate anyone to think that I ride with my lights like that and to be fair, when I look at my g/f's Lupine Wilma set on low, it is just on the right side of being bright but not enough to pee the on-coming drivers off.. as our lights rae designed for off road use.

    As has been said, we all have a responsibility to show respect to others. That said, during the day, I think I am guilty of riding (when on the road) with lights that are brighter than they need to be as this is when many accidents happen from drivers claiming not to see you and then pull out in front of you - and to that end, that NEVER happens with me and a lot of space is given to me both back and front by other road users.. and I appreciate it.

  20. #20
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    The other point about bright rear brake lights on cars (my take) is that they are needed because much research has shown that humans appear to be responding slower to brake light signals (possibly because cars have better brakes and stop faster) and people just seem to have their focus elsewhere but also the message needs to be carried beyond the car directly behind the car breaking so other drivers can take note... Of course this would be less of a problem if once stopped, people were to ues their hand brake and not keep their feet jammed on the brake pedal - so what would be good would be brake lights that had abmbient light intensity sensors built in and also once the car has come to a stop for the lights to automatically dim.

  21. #21
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    Mmm, mega bike lights for the road. I think Troutie hit the nail on the head when he said
    Quote Originally Posted by troutie-mtb
    With power comes responsability
    My commute into SW London takes me along a fast undulating road through woods with a poor surface near the road edge. The traffic along it is constant, flowing at 40 - 50 mph, with headlight beams shining up into one's eyes as the cars crest the peaks. Cycling on my road bike, a P7 flashlight plus a smaller flood-to-throw aspheric simply isn't enough light on the road - however it is pushing the limits of what is acceptable to others because the beams are not controlled.

    At the moment I have to take Cat-man-do's advice and slow down sometimes, although it is a bummer as you rely on the momentum from one descent to help the next ascent. But it is the reason I'm trying experiments with beams as, for me, I need (well, really really want!) more light on the road but without annoying the car drivers.

  22. #22
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    To mfj197 who gave this comment:

    At the moment I have to take Cat-man-do's advice and slow down sometimes, although it is a bummer as you rely on the momentum from one descent to help the next ascent. But it is the reason I'm trying experiments with beams as, for me, I need (well, really really want!) more light on the road but without annoying the car drivers.
    A bummer it is, especially when you can't see because of someone else's bright lights. The thing is: how many times have you driven your car and had the same situation? Maybe it's raining and you can barely see 50ft in front of you and you have an on-coming vehicle with those new high-tech/high output headlights. Even though you know those are likely only their low-beams they are still so bright you almost have to use your high-beams just so you don't cause an accident.

    Admittedly, I have to confess I've used the high beams ( with on coming traffic ) a time or two while on my bike but only because I felt I was in danger of not seeing the road because of the on-coming glare. Not something I really wanted to do but I wear glasses and if I look down too far I end up looking over the lenses which in my case would mean riding almost blind. Having a visor on the helmet helps but sometimes you still have to make an exception.

    Oh, and what you said about using lights during the day ( on the road ). While it might look dorky I can't say I disagree. If I ever start to do road biking on a regular basis I will use a good light/flasher on the bars especially when riding in areas with lots of intersections and lots of traffic. I figure my Dinotte 600L should fit the bill perfectly.

    EFmax said:

    The other point about bright rear brake lights on cars (my take) is that they are needed because much research has shown that humans appear to be responding slower to brake light signals (possibly because cars have better brakes and stop faster) and people just seem to have their focus elsewhere but also the message needs to be carried beyond the car directly behind the car breaking so other drivers can take note...
    Undoubtedly people are more distracted when driving these days but those super-bright red led tail lights on some cars do nothing but annoy other drivers and make some actually attempt to pass when it is not safe. This happens because when people are mad they often over-react. There are two situations while driving I hate to get into. One is getting behind one of those cars with the bright LED rear lights while in stop and go traffic and the other is to get behind a 18 wheeler while exiting off an exit ramp. However if giving the choice of the two I'd take the 18 wheeler every time ( ** the exception to that rule would be unless it was dark and the 18 wheeler had a totally smooth aluminum rear end! I hate when that happens. )

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