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  1. #1
    swag ho Administrator
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    Does your light have flash mode? Have you used it?

    Flash mode on lights... a lot of LED systems have it now.

    Do you have it and do you use it? I ask because some of these new light have a flash mode AND they force you through to scroll through it to turn the light off or to change light intensity.

    For me, this is usesless and an annoyance. I know it's more of an emergency purpose but I don't think there's an emergency where flash mode is going to save my hide. Or maybe it's for commuting. But that's what red flashing tail lamps are for.

    But, maybe I'm way off here. What's your opinioin on flash mode. I'd like to hear it for my review.

    fc
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  2. #2
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    hi francois

    on my recently purchaced 600L i "right click" to go into disco mode, which is insanely bright and that i use for going through dangerous intersections on the road. everything gets lit up with pulsing white light and i get the sense that nearby cars think that there is an emergency vehicle coming through... then i left click once, and am back on high beam. i find this pretty useful at times.





    matt

  3. #3
    swag ho Administrator
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    Quote Originally Posted by matt m
    hi francois

    on my recently purchaced 600L i "right click" to go into disco mode, which is insanely bright and that i use for going through dangerous intersections on the road. everything gets lit up with pulsing white light and i get the sense that nearby cars think that there is an emergency vehicle coming through... then i left click once, and am back on high beam. i find this pretty useful at times.

    matt
    Just tried it. Holy strobelight!

    Dinotte's got this dialed. There's three flash modes but they're all hidden and the user has to toggle to a special mode to access these.

    Some of these lights, you have to go through the flash mode every single time you turn off or change intensity.

    fc
    IPA will save America

  4. #4
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    I appretiate having the flash mode, but I am a commuter. I use it when it isn't dark enough to require a light to see my way but I want to be seen. Yes, I do use a rear blinky, but I also want to be visible from the front and sides. I think a flashing white light on the front catches drivers' attention better than a steady light.

    I'm in the market for a new LED commuter light and for this reason I am leaning toward the Minewt X2 over the Stella because Stella lacks the flash mode.

  5. #5
    Double-metric mtb man
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    I've only got halogens, but I have 4 modes (low, med, high and flash). I find myself riding down a fairly insane street in the evenings on weekends whilst getting home following my rides. I definitely use the flash then to be seen.

    For a purely off-road light, it isn't really needed, but for getting to and from the trail, it can be a real bonus.
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  6. #6
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    I find the flash mode to be usefull just before sundown. we generally start riding while the sun is up and don't finish untill well into the night. there's always 20 to 30 minutes in there where it's still bright enough to see the road, and just dark enough that motorist have trouble seeing us.

    i use the flash mode to save on battery time and remain visible to motorist.

    as for off-road lights, i can't imagine what the flash mode would be good for.

  7. #7
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    I believe the Lupines do but I have no need for it. I do not enjoy roadbiking and would not find myself riding on the road at night. On singletrack, there is no need for it. I do have the Alpine emergency mode and a SOS flash mode as well but those may be illegal to use unless in an emergency but I'll cycle through them for when I go camping or skiing at night.

  8. #8
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    the flash mode is good for freaking people out who don't expect people to be out riding their bikes in the forest at night.

  9. #9
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    I don't use flash modes. All I want is a switch that turns the light on and off.

    When I turn the light on, I want it on 'high' or whatever setting I have selected to be in the 'on' position.

    I really dislike scrolling on switches, unless there are two switches with one for on/off.

  10. #10
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    I am 3 miles from the closest trial-head. I use flash mode on the ride there. Keeps the cars out of my face.

  11. #11
    M070R-M0U7H FR3NCHI3
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    Quote Originally Posted by francois
    For me, this is usesless and an annoyance. I know it's more of an emergency purpose but I don't think there's an emergency where flash mode is going to save my hide. Or maybe it's for commuting. But that's what red flashing tail lamps are for.
    you summed it up right there Francis. I don't use any flashing modes other than my red tail lamp on my road bike.

  12. #12
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    Why do people use flashing rear lights?

    Because they are more visable!

    I use my LED home brew light using a Maxflex driver on on e of its 3 strobe levels when I need to be seen more than I need to see. Common sense really.

    You guys doing the light reviews should include a homebrew couple of lights in there as they are leading the way a lot of the time. (nb thats not to say I'm leading the way, all I've done is follow someone elses lead)

  13. #13
    swag ho Administrator
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    Quote Originally Posted by iggs
    Why do people use flashing rear lights?

    Because they are more visable!

    I use my LED home brew light using a Maxflex driver on on e of its 3 strobe levels when I need to be seen more than I need to see. Common sense really.

    You guys doing the light reviews should include a homebrew couple of lights in there as they are leading the way a lot of the time. (nb thats not to say I'm leading the way, all I've done is follow someone elses lead)
    I guess this is what I'm trying to understand. It looks like folks are using flashing headlamps to be more visible. That's fine, though I never would have expected folks using flashing headlights. To me that would be distracting and hazardous to my vision.

    But if someone is in traffic and doesn't have a tail light, then that would be a decent substitute. Incidentally, I have the Cateye 10-led tail lamp and the the Dinotte 100+ lumen red lamp. Those are visible!

    Also, I did include a couple cree based DIY lamps in my photoshoot last night.

    fc
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by speed_bump
    I'm in the market for a new LED commuter light and for this reason I am leaning toward the Minewt X2 over the Stella because Stella lacks the flash mode.
    The Stella has a flashing mode. It's kind of in the way since you have to scroll through 5 light modes including flashing to switch from dim to bright.

    fc
    IPA will save America

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by francois
    I guess this is what I'm trying to understand. It looks like folks are using flashing headlamps to be more visible. That's fine, though I never would have expected folks using flashing headlights. To me that would be distracting and hazardous to my vision.

    But if someone is in traffic and doesn't have a tail light, then that would be a decent substitute. Incidentally, I have the Cateye 10-led tail lamp and the the Dinotte 100+ lumen red lamp. Those are visible!

    Also, I did include a couple cree based DIY lamps in my photoshoot last night.

    fc

    i have found it to be most useful in preventing cars whose drivers are waiting to make a left turn and who might have otherwise overlooked you and turned into your right of way. in those cases, just having a taillight is of little value and a constant beam is more easily absorbed into the background of car lights and street lamps. when i turn the disco strobe on, it is like having a police escort through the bad patches of traffic and i truly feel safer. whether i am or not is an entirely different question.

  16. #16
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    Odd that you ask it now, I've been commuting for 10+ years, and I just recently tried using the flashing mode. One of my colleagues, who's commute is over an hour, uses a front flasher all the time, so I thought I'd try it.

    Really, the flashing modes are only useful on well lighted streets, where you don't need a head light to see. It saves power, and makes cars at intersections notice you. Personally I prefer the solid mode. But if you pedal to your group rides, and it's partly on road, the flashing mode is a good way to conserve power...

    No flashing on our trials at night.

  17. #17
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    A flashing light is a lot more visible than a constant light whether on the front or back.

    The upper 2 levels of the maxflex strobe options don't completely dim so there is plenty of light to see where your going by if needed.

    The constant or flashing decision is about the need to either see or be seen and which is most important.

    It does also make a significant difference to battery usage. The introduction of the red led flashing rear light revolutionised cycle lighting in both terms of visibility AND battery life. Its possible to fit a rear light and leave it to just be there for when you need it. 100 hours is a lot of riding at night.

    A flashing rear light is much more important than any form of front light. What happens in front of you you can see and therefore have more chance of doing something about it. Having been hit from behind by a van I'm really conscious of how you just can't see it coming, the first you will know is the impact.

    A flashing front light shouldn't be considered a substitute for a rear light if you have any road riding to do at all. I leave an led rear light permanently attached to my bike just in case I get caught out

  18. #18
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    On the Lupines, Betty and Wilma, you have to hold the switch for 5 seconds to activate it so it is not in the way of high and low beams. Plus you can choose strobe, alpine emergency mode or SOS like Flyer mentioned above. I don't use it, but it is set to S.O.S. on mine in case I get mangled or something and am still able to activate it . Running the Betty on strobe seems impractical actually unless you are going to have a disco on the go. I don't use it.

  19. #19
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    on my latest home brew bike light I have a flashing mode in the bflex but i don't use it. I guess becuase i don't ride on the streets. With the bflex its nice becuase its pretty hard to get into it so there is no way you will accidently go into flashing mode. I just bought a cheap light that goes on my head for walking around and you have to cycle through flash mode before you turn it off. Really annoys me and i have only had it for a couple of days now. Maybe a jogger would use that flash mode but i don't see it being helpful for anything else on a light that goes on your head.

  20. #20
    GMF
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    Quote Originally Posted by francois
    The Stella has a flashing mode. It's kind of in the way since you have to scroll through 5 light modes including flashing to switch from dim to bright.

    fc
    Hey Francois,

    Did you know that the Stella has a "race" mode that you get into by doing a press and hold to turn on (1-2 seconds) instead of the double click? That gets you High and Low only, which non-commuters, and you, might prefer.

    I also think flashing is nice for commuting, but annoying for mountain biking.

  21. #21
    maker of trail
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    I was struggling with what kind of modes to include in my lights... I thought about it long and hard... and really, if its on I want to see, so full power, or off.

    The only reason my light flashes is to warn me to that its about to switch to limp home mode once the battery is down to about 80% capacity. Mainly just so I can slow down if needed

  22. #22
    swag ho Administrator
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    Quote Originally Posted by GMF
    Hey Francois,

    Did you know that the Stella has a "race" mode that you get into by doing a press and hold to turn on (1-2 seconds) instead of the double click? That gets you High and Low only, which non-commuters, and you, might prefer.

    I also think flashing is nice for commuting, but annoying for mountain biking.
    You are correct sir. That's smart design on their part!

    fc
    IPA will save America

  23. #23
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    I've built my own LED systems because I prefer a more custom design and two, because of the cost of the new technology. It doesn't need to be as expensive as it is, proof is in pricing the parts, but that's off topic so I won't go there. The PC Driver Boards I use have UI capabilities and one is flashing mode. I'm new to alot of the features but having options with no added expense is a good thing. I'm finding out the flashing mode is very useful because a cyclist can't do enough to be seen. When on the road bike these lights with flashing have increased my security zone and comfort level. I can tell I'm being seen and that motorists are being more causious. I know alot of mountainbikers don't care about flashing, I don't use it in the woods either, but when you're out in traffic it a must have option.

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