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  1. #1
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    bar end lights - is there any point ?

    i don't think i see the point in these lights - is there ?

    if i was going to get some for my MTB it would probably be these ( Trek Beacon ) :

    http://revolutioncycles.com/images/l...02908_08_m.jpg

    because they're designed for MTB bar ( LED aimed sideways instead of axially ) and because they use AAA battery ( instead of button cells )

    but what exactly is the purpose ? if you have a decent tail light i doubt these can make you more visible.

    and as far as letting drivers know how wide you are - does that really matter ? i'm not saying it does or it doesn't - i'm asking a question.

    my biggest concern i guess is that these things would actually make my bike about an inch wider ! i once ( when i was 15 ) crashed because i clipped somebody with my handlebar, and this thing would actually make me wider ...

    finally, i sometimes lay my bike on the side with the bar end touching the ground - would i still be able to do this with the flimsy LED lights on the bar ends ?

    if you use bar end lights in addition to more powerful tail lights - do you find the bar end lights useful still ?

    and finally - would having these lights on the bar be distracting to me when i ride ?

    here's some info on the Trek lights:

    Trek Beacon Bar End Lightset Review and Unboxing - YouTube

    http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2673/...a200f8.jpg?v=0

    http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3478/...ecbb10.jpg?v=0

  2. #2
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    ^
    If you don't like it then don't buy it. Life. De-complicated.

    Speaking of complication, there is a discussion already about them, why you had to make separate thread about it I don't know.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gundam168 View Post
    ^
    If you don't like it then don't buy it. Life. De-complicated.
    how am i supposed to know if i don't like them if i never tried them ? PS: thank you for instructing me how to live - i really needed that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gundam168 View Post
    Speaking of complication, there is a discussion already about them, why you had to make separate thread about it I don't know.
    i anticipated you would become hostile i if i brought this question up in your thread, so to avoid the drama i didn't, but you came here to my thread anyway to help me by letting me know that my ideas are invalid because they're different from yours. thanks again.

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    I never said your ideas are invalid. But if what I posted made you believe they are then I can't do anything about it. Don't worry about drama I can handle a little drama in this sub forum.

  5. #5
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    OK i think i figured out what these can be used for ! when on a narrow MUP it might help other riders and pedestrians avoid brushing you by letting them know how wide you are.

    On the other hand i don't think it would be much benefit on the road. On the MUP however ( and even more so on bridges and overpasses ) you often pass people with only inches of clearance, in which case it may be useful.

    On the road i would like cars to pass me with a couple FEET of clearance so the benefit of advertising your width becomes moot there.

    EDIT: except these bar end lights don't project forward ! which you would need to pass somebody on MUP going the other way - HA ! so it's back to uselessness ...

  6. #6
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    While it might seem that some lights are virtually useless, no light is completely useless if someone sees it and then avoids a collision.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    While it might seem that some lights are virtually useless, no light is completely useless if someone sees it and then avoids a collision.
    yeah i'm looking at it from the standpoint of does adding a particular light confuse or clarify what you look like ? for example if you had three similar blinkys all mounted next to each other it would confuse the picture because their blinks would all get jumbled up into a mess. on the other hand if you have one spoke light and you add a second one it clarifies what you see because now it looks more like a wheel rather than a light floating in space.

    i think there is some optimum number of lights that makes the bike most recognizable - too few and you just look like some nondescript blinking object - too many and you look like a christmas tree rather than a vehicle.

    so i think it's not just about total lumens and not just about even 360 degree coverage, but also it's about painting a picture that looks like a bike.

    i think in case of bar end lights they would probably do more good helping you look like a bike than harm making you look like a Christmas tree. i think they're a positive overall, although i don't think there are any out there that are any good.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by androgen View Post
    yeah i'm looking at it from the standpoint of does adding a particular light confuse or clarify what you look like ? for example if you had three similar blinkys all mounted next to each other it would confuse the picture because their blinks would all get jumbled up into a mess. on the other hand if you have one spoke light and you add a second one it clarifies what you see because now it looks more like a wheel rather than a light floating in space....
    Yes I understand and agree with what you are saying but I was simplifying the issue.

    If your driving down the road at night and only see one small "lame" red light you might think, "what's that"? because that is all you see at the moment. As someone else pointed out to me once, "It really doesn't matter if you know what the source of the light is". "It you see the light, you know enough that anything that emits a light is something that you are going to avoid".

    It should also be pointed out that any red light on the side of road that is blinking ( and moving ) will usually be interpreted by the viewer as
    "possible Bicycle" even if they can't see the entire bike at the moment.

    Now the minute you put lights on your wheels you immediately remove any guess work from the viewer ( as long as you are moving ). Once spotted the viewer immediately KNOWS that it's a bicycle.

    While it may be nice to be identified as a bicycle immediately the more light ( or lights ) you add to broaden the viewable picture is usually helpful ( even if the person viewing doesn't quite know what he/she is looking at )

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    It should also be pointed out that any red light on the side of road that is blinking ( and moving ) will usually be interpreted by the viewer as
    "possible Bicycle" even if they can't see the entire bike at the moment.
    you give drivers too much credit. i remember once when i was an alcoholic i was doing 100+ mph on a busy Brooklyn street and i couldn't even see the road - i could see color lights that looked like traffic lights and i could tell that some of them were red and some were green but i couldn't tell which ones were on the intersection nearest to me and which were 2 or 3 intersections down - they were simply color lights floating in the atmosphere and i was absolutely unable to tell which ones were in front of which - not that i could have slowed down in time anyway even if i mashed the brake pedal because i was going 4 times the speed limit.

    you know not all brains work the same. there are people who look at a complex science problem and without thinking know the answer and there are people who look at their own children and can't recognize who they are. we can't assume that drivers will act logically or responsibly - if drivers acted this way car accidents would never happen and no safety measures would be needed - not airbags, not seatbelts, nor anything else.

    the more work we do for the brain of the driver the more likely it is that his brain will complete the work we have started for him.

    in order to interpret a blinking light as "a possible bicycle" a person would need to be free from alcohol, drugs, prescription drugs, alzheimer's, senile dementia, multiple sclerosis, severe depression, any severe distress or pain, not talking on the phone, not texting, not fondling his girlfriend, and just plain not being mentally handicapped.

    like that train driver that went 150 kmh in a turn that can only be taken at 80 kmh max killing 79 people - yeah he was SUPPOSED TO slow down, BUT he was on the phone ...

    most people who don't bike have a mindset that bikes don't belong on the road and they will not make the connection between a light and a bike the way a driver who is also a biker would. also most young people under the age of 25 will crash into something simply because that's what teenagers do.

    there are parts of the world where cyclists outnumber cars on the road ( China, Netherlands ), there are parts of the world where bikes on the road are common ( Bay Area, Manhattan ) and there are parts where bikes are nonexistent ( lets say some small town in Texas ). now what if somebody from that small town visits your city for a vacation - is he going to make a connection between a blinking LED and a bicycle ? my guess is no - even if he is otherwise an intelligent and responsible individual.

  10. #10
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    well i ordered the Moutain Bike version of the Trek lights. it was $16.99 + $7.99 for shipping = $24.98 total. I think this is a reasonable price considering you get two lights.

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    ^ Looks like you found enough of a point to them to buy a pair for yourself.

    Anyway, I also found that I have a use for them as turning signal lights.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gundam168 View Post
    ^ Looks like you found enough of a point to them to buy a pair for yourself.

    Anyway, I also found that I have a use for them as turning signal lights.
    how the **** do you use them as turn signals ?

  13. #13
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    ^
    It's not rocket science bro. You can figure it out. Mine came with chinese instructions but I figured it out.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gundam168 View Post
    ^
    It's not rocket science bro. You can figure it out. Mine came with chinese instructions but I figured it out.
    hehe

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gundam168 View Post
    ^ Looks like you found enough of a point to them to buy a pair for yourself.

    Anyway, I also found that I have a use for them as turning signal lights.
    Novel idea, I never thought of that before. Hand signals are still better during the day though. Judging from the video's while the bar end lights are visible from the rear they are not "super" visible from the rear.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    Novel idea, I never thought of that before. Hand signals are still better during the day though. Judging from the video's while the bar end lights are visible from the rear they are not "super" visible from the rear.
    there is a company ( although i don't know if its actually in business at this point ) called LED by LITE which has a bike lighting system where you can control turn indicators from a bar mounted control panel ...

    my problem with all this is - how does anybody know that by your blinking you're signaling a turn ? also the car may not even see both of your bar ends at the same time so it wouldn't know if one of them is blinking or both.

  17. #17
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    well my Trek Beacons are installed ! and Unboxing video is going to be up on YouTube shortly ( although it isn't particularly interesting ).

    these are very directional - like a blinky. and with the MTB wheel and MTB version of the beacons you can rotate them so they are aimed precisely parallel to the ground. I put a piece of black tape on the wall at the height of the handlebar and aimed the beams precisely at it.

    It was about 7.45 in the morning when i took this picture. The lights are pointing at the camera more or less in this pic. The way the bike is standing this means up, but if the front wheel was straight they would be pointing straight back.

    Of course i will eventually do a video outdoors.

    I had to remove the rubber fins ( that was real easy - just rip them off ) because it wouldn't fit with them. Instead i applied a few turns of 3M electrical tape to it to it and it went in snug but it is still easy to pull out to change the battery. I put Sanyo Eneloop AAA in there, and i'll probably put the included batteries into some remote control.

    So in the pic below the Beacons are running on Eneloop rechargeable batteries.

    The lights are quite sturdy - the only downside is that that my handlebar added more than an inch in width. I guess other bar end lights don't add that much width, but they also don't beam the light backwards.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails bar end lights - is there any point ?-trek-beacon.jpg  

    bar end lights - is there any point ?-trek-beacon.jpg  


  18. #18
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    here is the Unboxing video for the Trek Beacon:

    Here's the Unboxing video :

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    Androgen. I don't understand why you started another thread on this subject, since Gundam168 had already started a thread, which was already getting replies.
    Bar end lights / blinkers

    Now we have two threads on the exact same issue, which is less useful to people who are trying to compare these types of lights. It's easier if it's all in one place.

  20. #20
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    because i didn't want to hijack his thread ...

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    Ok, fair enough.

  22. #22
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    here's the Video with Trek Beacons:

    ( the part with the Beacons starts at 12 minute mark )


  23. #23
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    i have to say the Beacons are cool. they're about as bright as Cateye LD1100 which some people think is a serious tail light, which of course it is not.

    of course on the road they add little to nothing to the output of Dinotte and NiteFlux, but ...

    but i love them on the MUP. when i hit the MUP i turn off ALL my lights except Philips SafeRide and Trek Beacons and it works great.

    i could probably find a way to enable a setting on Red Zone 8 for an ultra low power which could replace the Beacons on MUP, and frankly i wouldn't buy the Beacons again - because they make the bike wider and make bar ends less strong ( these wouldn't be issues with a road bike which has different shape bar ).

    but if you want a low power blinky that doesn't take up space on your seat post it's an option for when you want something that is visible but not too bright.

    i can neither recommend them nor can i recommend that you stay away from them.

    its about halfway between a cool but useless toy and a practical but unremarkable product.

    once again - i wouldn't buy them again, but i also don't regret buying them.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by androgen View Post
    you give drivers too much credit.
    Sorry but I wasn't really following this thread too closely, sorry for the delay in my response. Yes, I tend to give people the benefit of the doubt when it comes to driving motor vehicles. In discussions like this I assume that most people operating a motor vehicle are lucid, sane, sober, not overly distracted, free of mental illness or dementia and can see well enough to operate a motor vehicle legally. That is why I used the phrases, "MOST people" and "usually". There will always be exceptions to the rule. I know that there are people driving motor vehicles that shouldn't be. Not really a lot that I or anyone else can do about it other than take the common sense precautions that are already taken and HOPE LIKE HELL THAT THESE PEOPLE DON'T COME KNOCKING ON YOUR DOOR....so to speak.

    I also assume that since LED blinkies have been around at least 15 years or so that most people who drive cars have seen one in action. Unless you've grown up in the Amazon jungle and are JUST NOW getting a drivers license, you have probably seen someone using an LED blinkie and therefore know "what they are" and "how they are generally used". Even if it's not a cyclist it usually indicates "human activity". Something that most people know to avoid.

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