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  1. #51
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    Thanks for that Cat. Always had an eye on those too. The 180 visibility is great indeed - my chinese 5-led sucks compared to this.
    Will have a proper tail light soon, so no worries.

  2. #52
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    Mech, I hope you don't mind; I copied this from the thread you started a while back. Since it had a lot to do with the topic of visibility I thought I would re-post it because it looked like a good option for inexpensive side visibility lighting.

    Quote Originally Posted by mechBgon View Post
    I had one of these before and got quite a bit of use out of it before it quit, so I recently got another one. They're powered by two AAAs and come in various colors, and are $15. I use amber since it's a recognized side-visibility color.












    The light zip-ties onto whatever you want to attach it to. It doesn't have any particular water-resistance features, so I'd avoid putting it in the path of tire spray or other especially wet locations. The underside of the top tube is a good spot for it, and its light hits my waterbottles and my legs for some extra visibility. Facing forward on the seat tube could be even better, but I think it would interfere with my waterbottle.

    The power button is soft rubber with no tactile feedback, and has "soft-OFF," which means it will slowly deplete your batteries even when OFF. So I try to remember to recharge my AAAs once or twice a week, depending on how many hours I'm riding. It has steady-burn and three flashing speeds.

    Removing the batteries can be slightly annoying since the light is zip-tied to the bike and the second battery doesn't always come out easily.

    This video clip shows the BikeBrightz along with some other lights.

    I figure you could adapt these real easy to work with Velcro for easy on/off quick release. Likely they aren't going to hold up to hard use but for $15 not a bad deal.

    Posted by PedroDank;

    Thanks for that Cat. Always had an eye on those too. The 180 visibility is great indeed - my chinese 5-led sucks compared to this.
    Will have a proper tail light soon, so no worries.
    Actually it is more like 220 of visibility to be more accurate. Just keep in mind that I wasn't endorsing the light, just commenting on it. If you already have a cheap 5-led blinkie then you would want to upgrade to something better. I'd recommend something like the Niterider Solas, Cygolite Hotshot or Moon Shield.

    I noticed the other day that there is a smaller version of the rear laser light. That might be better because it takes up less room. Still, I wouldn't use these for solo rides but for group rides where they might be more practical since you really don't want to blind the guy riding in back of you anyway. My Moon Shield is quite bright even on low. I certainly wouldn't want to ride behind somebody using one, even on low.

  3. #53
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    Great thread. I'm in the process of setting up a daytime commuter bike, and while being completely happy with my Dinotte 300R, I'm planning to acquire one of these when they become available. The info below is from emails dated 28 Nov, and 23 Dec. Here's hoping NiteFlux comes through on these.

    An estimated 400 lumens at 8w.





    Good things come to those who wait:
    Attached are photos of the new Niteflux red zone product. It is improved on the original in many ways:

    even easier to see from all angles
    much easier switch action
    longer runtime
    easier to attach to seat posts
    repairable/battery replaceable

    Also, in response to requests from USA, it is also going to be available in DOUBLE power. That is 8W peak power in flash mode and over 400lm!

    We are now finished pre-production test on this new unit. It has taken some time to finalise the design but it will be worth the wait. We are now beginning the first production cycle. This will take around 4-6 weeks.

    For those who have asked about getting a new niteflux red zone for xmas, I am sorry but we wont be guaranteeing delivery before xmas.
    For those who have asked about international delivery, we usually ship these from a warehouse in USA but there have been changes in the postal system in USA banning all batteries in the short term. This is expected to be reviewed with new rules in place on Jan 1 2013. Niteflx bicycle lights will comply with the new rules and international postage will resume at that time.

    If you are receiving this email it is because you have sent a back-order enquiry to niteflux. Sorry we cant give individualised replies to all emails. We get too many. Thanks for your patience, we will be making a special offer to all back-order customers: A free upgrade from 4W version to 8W version. Just reply to this email to book your 8W version if you want it. Otherwise, we will send another email when the first batch of stock is available.

    Best Regards,
    David
    Dear Customers,

    I am writing with an update about the new red zone 4, red zone 8 and white equivalents.
    We are close to finishing the first production batch of these new lights but are forced to pause now while local factories shutdown over xmas. Production will resume in mid January.

    The response to our offer of free upgrade to rz8 has been very strong, much more than I expected even. This shows a hidden demand for even more visible lights on the road and we are happy to help. I can tell you the new tail lights are very visible in bright daylight, from more than 180degrees. That's right, even past fully side on.

    I hope you all enjoy a happy and safe Christmas. I will write again in the new year.

    Best Regards,
    David






    Last edited by pigmode; 12-29-2012 at 04:23 PM.

  4. #54
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    Mech, I hope you don't mind; I copied this from the thread you started a while back. Since it had a lot to do with the topic of visibility I thought I would re-post it because it looked like a good option for inexpensive side visibility lighting.
    No problem

    Great thread. I'm in the process of setting up a daytime commuter bike, and while being completely happy with my Dinotte 300R, I'm planning to acquire one of these when they become available. The info below is from emails dated 28 Nov, and 23 Dec. Here's hoping NiteFlux comes through on these.

    An estimated 400 lumens at 8w.
    I want one too. They emailed me the same info, since my RZ4 won't turn on anymore, so I'm in line for an RZ8 when they become available. From my test video, even the RZ4 was visible from a side view, in overcast daylight, at a range of about 1/2 mile. And that was with my old Canon camera that shoots video at a mere 640 x 480.

  5. #55
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    Its good to know they are backing up their product, as I'm really liking the horizontal saddle mount. Btw, are you going for the 4w or 8w version?

  6. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by pigmode View Post
    Its good to know they are backing up their product, as I'm really liking the horizontal saddle mount. Btw, are you going for the 4w or 8w version?
    I'll go with 8W. That's the maximum, but I can always run it lower. Assuming they use the same user interface as before, I can pick which steady or flashing output levels I want to appear in the cycle, as well as choose a flash pattern (the default quad-burst mode is just one of the possibilities).

  7. #57
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    Hi All, as an avid commuter in NYC I'm in search for a practical, maintenance free tail light. So far, I think I have my front covered, but it is always in the tail that I feel insecure. Currently, I am using a Light and Motion vis 180 micro in the back of my helmet and a Portland Design Danger Zone blinky clipped on my pack. The L&M works great, but the blink looses output dramatically as soon as is off axis, I believe I need to replace it and I don't want another blinky. I would love to have your opinions on the following:

    1. Dinotte 300R, expensive and I'm not sure about the side visibility
    2. Exposure Flare, relatively cheap, but does it compare?
    3. Wait for the Niteflux 4 or 8? Why?

    For those of you that know NYC, I ride from Park Slope (Bklyn) to Union sq. and back, that's an 8-9km stretch full of car traffic but also some bike traffic, especially over the Manhattan or Brooklyn bridges. I want something super bright but I'm afraid to blind my fellow cyclists as they are crossing the bridge behind me, that's also a reason I haven't immediately gone for the dinotte.

    Any suggestions would be really appreciated. Thanks!

  8. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guydebord View Post
    Hi All, as an avid commuter in NYC I'm in search for a practical, maintenance free tail light. So far, I think I have my front covered, but it is always in the tail that I feel insecure. Currently, I am using a Light and Motion vis 180 micro in the back of my helmet and a Portland Design Danger Zone blinky clipped on my pack. The L&M works great, but the blink looses output dramatically as soon as is off axis, I believe I need to replace it and I don't want another blinky. I would love to have your opinions on the following:

    1. Dinotte 300R, expensive and I'm not sure about the side visibility
    2. Exposure Flare, relatively cheap, but does it compare?
    3. Wait for the Niteflux 4 or 8? Why?

    For those of you that know NYC, I ride from Park Slope (Bklyn) to Union sq. and back, that's an 8-9km stretch full of car traffic but also some bike traffic, especially over the Manhattan or Brooklyn bridges. I want something super bright but I'm afraid to blind my fellow cyclists as they are crossing the bridge behind me, that's also a reason I haven't immediately gone for the dinotte.

    Any suggestions would be really appreciated. Thanks!
    If you want off-axis visibility, the old NiteFlux was good and I'd expect the new one to be good as well:



    If the price is similar ($100ish) then it'll be a good value too. I've also had the 300R, which isn't quite as omnidirectional but still quite wide. Both would be daytime-visible.

    Although you could program the NiteFlux to cycle through just the power settings you want (say, 8W flashing for cars, and a low-output steady mode for bikes only), it might be simpler just to have a separate low-powered light that you leave on all the time, and switch your "big gun" taillight off when you're in a no-cars zone. If you want a nominee for the low-powered light, I'd actually suggest the Cygolite Hotshot because it's USB-rechargeable and you can dial its steady mode to whatever intensity you want (and still fire up a full-power flash mode if you're in heavy traffic).

  9. #59
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    Black reflective tape. I have some. It's not very visible. It's more visible than the black plastic behind it, but I think it's a waste of time and money unless the surface absolutely has to look black in daylight.

    I strongly believe that the ideal is to make the cyclist readily identifiable. Even if the cyclist is visible, not being identified in time can result in getting hit by a driver that "didn't see you" even though you were very visible. It happens all the time to motorcyclists. Sadly, that also points out the weakness. Drivers just may not be prepared to see a cyclist, and won't no matter what.

    I don't believe that making ourselves even more visible via brighter lights and a more intense strobe is going to help either. If anything, that would blind drivers, resulting in two reasons to get in an accident instead of one.

    I've seen a couple good examples of bikes and riders in this thread that should be easily and quickly identifiable even if I hadn't known what to expect. To this end, I really like reflective surfaces on the main and rear triangle, on the fork, the water bottle, tire and wheel. If fenders are installed, reflective surfaces on that makes it even better. Reflective clothing can really help with drivers approaching from the rear, and to the side to some extent, but as noticed, might not help from the front.

    Increasing visibility and identifiability from the front is a challenge, with two goals that often oppose each other. Modern LED headlights can easily go beyond being visible to being blinding, which would make it impossible to identify a cyclist as anything more than a retina-searing light source. I've thought about using a floody light, probably a flashlight with a wand, on the top tube to illuminate my torso to hopefully make my body visible from the front, but my headlights may defeat this effort. It would also also mess up my vision to some extent. Ideally I'd have headlights that were so efficient at putting light on the ground that they wouldn't be blinding to other drivers, and then I could use other dimmer non-blinding lights to make my bike and torso more visible and identifiable from the front. Some of that efficiency could be gained by swapping my lenses with anti-glare coated lenses. While not efficient, I could also install plates in front of my reflector to block light that spills upwards, much like those in bi-xenon automotive headlamps. Another option is to switch to recoil optic lights that have LED's that face backwards into the reflector so that drivers could not look directly into a blindingly bright LED. Or a plate could be put directly in front of the LED to have the same effect as the shrouds that are installed in front of the bulbs in halogen automotive headlamps and the painted tips of halogen headlight bulbs. The ultimate solution might involve moving micro mirrors, along with the ability to recognize and react to the environment. This is still a far-off dream for automotive lighting even though the technology is already available, but the cost and ability to harness the technology is still being worked on.

    I don't know what to do about animals. Deer do some crazy things.

  10. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by leaftye View Post
    ....I don't believe that making ourselves even more visible via brighter lights and a more intense strobe is going to help either. If anything, that would blind drivers, resulting in two reasons to get in an accident instead of one.

    .
    I have to partially disagree on this point. As far as being viewed from the front by vehicular traffic, any light you have on front of your bike is better than no light at all. As has been pointed out by yourself and others ( myself included ) sometimes those lights are not readily identifiable because they are lost in the mix so to speak. While It happens from time to time it is not the general rule. If it were, motorcycles would never be allowed on the road at night. It's been my experience as a road professional that when viewing bike traffic head on ( or from emerging intersections ), cyclists that have a good quality front blinkie have a distinct advantage over a cyclist that has none. Even better if that blinkie is used in combo with a good steady light source and is spaced farther apart to give the viewer a larger point of reference. ( This is why it is easier to spot cars than motorcycles at night...usually ) Other than this I agree with most everything else you said.

    Regardless of how well you prepare yourself for night time road riding ( Lights, blinkies, reflective material on bike or person...) there is always going to be "That person", driving a vehicle who is so engrossed in some other activity that they fail to see you. That being the case you have to accept that as a "given risk" when you ride at night ( or daytime for that matter ). This is why people still have accidents ( with other drivers ) at night when driving, even though most cars have very good head lights and are very easy to see.

    I've driven professionally for more than 30yrs. and I've never been blinded by a bike light while driving down the road. I also see cyclist's who use front blinkies all the time. Never have I been blinded by such. On the other hand I get blinded by cars with bright head lights ALL THE TIME. As such I take it in stride even though it is quite annoying. Regardless I don't think I'm more inclined to hit a car just because their lights are bright. Matter of fact I would think the opposite to be true.

    I believe that a standard 4-led mini front blinkie has enough output to ( safely ) draw attention at night without being overly annoying. Running a mega lumen light on strobe ( at night ) could be disorienting to others as well as to oneself unless you are doing so during the day. Otherwise it would be way overkill at night and a danger to others. In that point we agree. The only exception I see to this is if you use a bright strobe for "Momentary use" only. I do this myself sometimes when going through a particularly dangerous intersection. In such a case I'll reach up to my helmet and turn the helmet strobe on till I have safely merged with traffic. Once cleared of danger I quickly turn it off, usually within 10 sec. Since I can aim the helmet light where ever the most danger is I find It serves a very useful purpose. ( Please note; I would never aim a bright strobe directly at a person driving a car...*UNLESS....they were trying to run me off the road. )
    Last edited by Cat-man-do; 12-31-2012 at 07:55 AM.

  11. #61
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    Drivers just may not be prepared to see a cyclist, and won't no matter what.

    I don't believe that making ourselves even more visible via brighter lights and a more intense strobe is going to help either. If anything, that would blind drivers, resulting in two reasons to get in an accident instead of one.
    To start with, flashing red taillights are associated with cyclists in my country (United States) so it should be self-evident that it's some sort of human-powered transportation, whether the human can be recognized or not.

    I can remark that on the 60mph highway, pro truckers are changing lanes to avoid "whatever that strobing thing is" at a range of 1/4 mile and beyond. They don't have to identify it as a cyclist, or an ambulance, or a towtruck, they just recognize a possible hazard and give it extra space. A significant proportion of non-pro drivers do likewise. Crossing the off-ramps to keep going straight is an especially important place to be detected from maximum range.

    In city traffic, anyone who thinks they'll "blind" a motorist with a bike light is not being realistic. Here's a scene I ride through daily, with two rows of automotive lowbeams glaring down into oncoming traffic from an overlook position:



    Thousands of lumens right in the face, and I don't recall ever seeing an accident there.

  12. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by mechBgon View Post
    If you want off-axis visibility, the old NiteFlux was good and I'd expect the new one to be good as well:

    If the price is similar ($100ish) then it'll be a good value too. I've also had the 300R, which isn't quite as omnidirectional but still quite wide. Both would be daytime-visible.

    Although you could program the NiteFlux to cycle through just the power settings you want (say, 8W flashing for cars, and a low-output steady mode for bikes only), it might be simpler just to have a separate low-powered light that you leave on all the time, and switch your "big gun" taillight off when you're in a no-cars zone. If you want a nominee for the low-powered light, I'd actually suggest the Cygolite Hotshot because it's USB-rechargeable and you can dial its steady mode to whatever intensity you want (and still fire up a full-power flash mode if you're in heavy traffic).
    Thanks, Mech.
    I think I will wait for the NiteFlux, I want something on my backpack and neither the Dinotte nor the Exposure provide me with that option. When I bought the Portland Danger Zone I had the chance to compare it with the Hotshot and PB Turbo, and I believe the Portland is better as a light source, it has a flashing mode that its very eye catching, the only inconvenience is the double AAA's, but I use rechargeables.

    Still, all these blinkies are very weak with side visibility...

  13. #63
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    Fyi, the Dinotte 300R does in fact come with a clip on mount (see link below!!!). Which is fortuitous as I now have the option to mount the 300R on my back pack in combination with a blinking light. I also finally have a planet bike turbo, so there are options for different situations.



    Lights for Road use: enhancing road visibility
    Last edited by pigmode; 01-02-2013 at 02:55 PM.

  14. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by pigmode View Post
    Fyi, the Dinotte 300R does in fact come with a clip on mount. Which is fortuitous as I now have the option to mount the 300R on my back pack in combination with a blinking light. I also finally have a planet bike turbo, so there are options for different situations.
    This is great news! Would it be to much to ask for a picture of the clip mount? I have done a google search without luck....

  15. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    I have to partially disagree on this point. As far as being viewed from the front by vehicular traffic, any light you have on front of your bike is better than no light at all.
    I want to clarify or emphasize that I was referring to already having lighting that providing visibility and going beyond that.

    Quote Originally Posted by mechBgon View Post
    To start with, flashing red taillights are associated with cyclists in my country (United States) so it should be self-evident that it's some sort of human-powered transportation, whether the human can be recognized or not.
    Brightly colored ~700 pound motorcycles w/rider with bright halogen lights should be readily self-evident as a vehicle to respect on the roadway, yet motorcyclists get hit frequently by drivers that did not see the motorcycle that were looking directly at.

    Human vision has a huge mental aspect of it, and that involves ignoring a lot of things and making a lot of assumptions. Increasing the recognition of a cyclist as a cyclist instead of some strange conglomeration of blinking lights and seemingly random assortment of bright (reflective) spots is about the best we could do. If we could make ourselves appear like a vehicle, that would be even better at times since that's what drivers most expect to see in the road and will most quickly identify.

    Quote Originally Posted by mechBgon View Post
    Thousands of lumens right in the face, and I don't recall ever seeing an accident there.
    As I mentioned in my post, halogen and xenon bulbs are shrouded. LED's in bike lights are not.

  16. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by leaftye View Post
    I want to clarify or emphasize that I was referring to already having lighting that providing visibility and going beyond that.



    Brightly colored ~700 pound motorcycles w/rider with bright halogen lights should be readily self-evident as a vehicle to respect on the roadway, yet motorcyclists get hit frequently by drivers that did not see the motorcycle that were looking directly at.

    Human vision has a huge mental aspect of it, and that involves ignoring a lot of things and making a lot of assumptions. Increasing the recognition of a cyclist as a cyclist instead of some strange conglomeration of blinking lights and seemingly random assortment of bright (reflective) spots is about the best we could do. If we could make ourselves appear like a vehicle, that would be even better at times since that's what drivers most expect to see in the road and will most quickly identify.
    I certainly approve of filling in "the big picture" for the viewer when possible, and go to great lengths to do that, but have a look at this video I shot. Watch the first half (me riding away from the camera & light source), then imagine it in reverse. How close does a motorist have to get, at a closing speed of 60-80 feet per second, before even a fully-reflectorized human profile "clicks" as a cyclist?



    Even the ambiguous 120-lumen double-flash taillight gives a motorist a solid 30-45 seconds to latch onto the general idea that they're overtaking SOMETHING that's emitting a caution signal. The Nova BULL shown there, along with my DiNotte 140, DiNotte 300R, Hotshot and Solas, have all drawn unsolicited roll-down-the-window praise from motorists for making me easy to notice. I think that tells us something about bright lights.

    Front lights are another question. How do we differentiate ourselves against a backdrop of other steady headlights? Have a look at this photo below... while I was shooting photos here, a cyclist came up the hill towards me with a typical "be-seen" small headlight and a bright-yellow jacket. He was very close before I noticed him, less than a block.



    What would get him noticed here? Would it be technically street-legal? What would you do? Great discussion material For myself, this is where I would be most comfortable with a "shotgun" beam with massive output, e.g. DiNotte 1200+ on HIGH or maybe pulse-flash, and maybe my helmet light as well.


    As I mentioned in my post, halogen and xenon bulbs are shrouded. LED's in bike lights are not.
    Being shrouded doesn't actually help when the headlight's reflector is helpfully directing the light downhill into my face. Super-high-end HIDs are the worst, having massive output and making sure it's all coming down the hill at me. In point of fact, the LED in my main headlight is shrouded and not even visible from the front, being a B&M Cyo. But when it's peeking over a hill at oncoming traffic, I still sometimes get high-beamed by people who are getting the core of the beam in their face. Not much I can do except to show them my real high beam, then turn it off again.

    Thanks, Mech.
    I think I will wait for the NiteFlux, I want something on my backpack and neither the Dinotte nor the Exposure provide me with that option. When I bought the Portland Danger Zone I had the chance to compare it with the Hotshot and PB Turbo, and I believe the Portland is better as a light source, it has a flashing mode that its very eye catching, the only inconvenience is the double AAA's, but I use rechargeables.

    Still, all these blinkies are very weak with side visibility...
    The NiteFlux is one solution. If you wanted something in the meanwhile, also consider the amber/yellow BikeBrightz pictured a few posts up. It's cheap, runs on rechargeable AAAs, and would probably be best on the front side of your seat tube facing forward-ish, so it's visible from the sides and particularly from the front. Or you can run pink, purple or green just to be extra-different

  17. #67
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    Daylight visibility

    A bicycle is almost invisible at 140 meters/459 feet in the day. A rider wearing a high visibility vest will improve visibility. The video and picture comparison will show how invisible bikes really are without rear strobing lights.

    A car travelling at 60mph will reach the bikes in 5.21 seconds. On a highway, it will cover that distance in 3.9 seconds at 80mph. The reaction time of a distracted or drunk driver will further reduce the time margin.



    Last edited by mtbRevolution; 12-31-2012 at 08:19 PM. Reason: typos
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  18. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by leaftye View Post
    I want to clarify or emphasize that I was referring to already having lighting that providing visibility and going beyond that. .
    Understood. As far as being seen by others, I agree there is a point of diminished returns, however the light you use on front of the bike serves two purposes. It allows others to see you but it also allows you to see the things that you need to see in the road so you don't end up killing yourself. As such the second point is just as important as the first but usually requires more light output to get the job done properly.

    Case in point: I use one of the Gloworm X2's on my road set-up. ( MTBR rated to about 1200 lumen on high ) ( with spot optics ). I don't need 1200 lumen to see where I'm going most of the time and I certainly don't need that much for others to see me. That is why I usually ride with the lamp in the 300 lumen mode. However if I hit a fast downhill or a fast section of road that is heavily wooded to the sides THEN I start to need more light so I can be more certain not to hit something either laying on the shoulder of the road or some sort of wildlife that may choose that moment to come popping out of the woods. To see farther you need a light with more output if using the same optical setup. Being seen generally requires less light and so is the smaller part of the issue when it comes to riding the road at night.


    Quote Originally Posted by leaftye View Post
    ....As I mentioned in my post, halogen and xenon bulbs are shrouded. LED's in bike lights are not.
    This is like comparing a peanut to a dollop of peanut butter. One may be slightly different in consistency but each has the same basic favor. When it comes to being blinded by a light source and making comparisons the real issue is output ( lumen ) and intensity ( throw ). Whether it comes from halogen, HID, or LED makes no difference to me. If you are blinded by it you really don't care about the emitter source and whether it is reflected light or light more directly emitted.

  19. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guydebord View Post
    This is great news! Would it be to much to ask for a picture of the clip mount? I have done a google search without luck....

    My bad, and I hope I caught you before ordering. The clip on the 300R is an after thought and nothing more than a total joke made out of painted steel. Here it is temporarily attached, as I've been using the screw-on chainstay mount. Seriously disappointing.


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    Quote Originally Posted by pigmode View Post
    My bad, and I hope I caught you before ordering. The clip on the 300R is an after thought and nothing more than a total joke made out of painted steel. Here it is temporarily attached, as I've been using the screw-on chainstay mount. Seriously disappointing.
    No worries, I think I will wait for the new lights from Australia... though It might take 1 or 2 months.

  21. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by pigmode View Post
    My bad, and I hope I caught you before ordering. The clip on the 300R is an after thought and nothing more than a total joke made out of painted steel. Here it is temporarily attached, as I've been using the screw-on chainstay mount. Seriously disappointing.

    But the 300R's clip isn't intended to clip onto fabric, it's specifically to clip onto the various mounting bayonets DiNotte includes, like this:



    I agree, it's worthless for clipping onto anything else, but its function is to turn the 300R into a quick-releasable light you can move from bike to bike, or remove from the bike when locking up in public.

  22. #72
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    Lol, that's right. I'm using the non-clip-on with the two vertical screws.

  23. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by mechBgon View Post
    ....Front lights are another question. How do we differentiate ourselves against a backdrop of other steady headlights? Have a look at this photo below... while I was shooting photos here, a cyclist came up the hill towards me with a typical "be-seen" small headlight and a bright-yellow jacket. He was very close before I noticed him, less than a block.



    What would get him noticed here? Would it be technically street-legal? What would you do? Great discussion material For myself, this is where I would be most comfortable with a "shotgun" beam with massive output, e.g. DiNotte 1200+ on HIGH or maybe pulse-flash, and maybe my helmet light as well...
    I thought I would dig this thread up to continue the discussion on front visibility. Mech makes a great point here. How do we make it more apparent that something coming up the road is a bike? Answer: strobes. As Mech pointed out before, blinking lights are associated with bicycles ( at least in the USA ). Just before winter hit my area I purchased a nice little "see me" front blinker called the "axiom" from Performance bike. Real nice mini self-contained light, USB rechargeable, very adjustable and very bright as mini front blinkies go.

    A while back I saw a rider using a blinking light on the front fork to supplement his bar lamp. He was riding in an urban setting much like the photo that Mech supplied. I was coming out of a side road and really only saw him ( among the lights of all the on coming cars ) because he had a strobe mounted low on front of the bike.
    I immediately recognized that this was a really good idea. The only question I had was: Was the strobe action of the light going to interfere ( or distract ) the rider by reflecting off the road? Thankfully I finally got my answer last night while doing a night road ride. With the Axiom mounted on one of my fork legs and tilted slightly upwards, there was no real big bounce effect from the road. All I noticed was the light from my front bar lamp. Occasionally when I approached reflective signs I got some bounce from those but that didn't bother me.

    To sum up; I definitely recommend that anyone riding a bike on the road do exactly as I did. You could place the blinkie on the bars but if your main bar light is brighter it will just drown out the blinkie. Mounting the blinkie lower on the bike gives the viewer a larger target to see ( with main lamp on the bars ). The key here is to keep each light isolated. This works and it works well.

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    Looking for power lights?, see here

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    Daytime rear lights: Amber strobes

    I finally decided to seek out something better than the plain XM-L torch with amber lens I was using for rear daytime duties. After doing some searching on the web it was becoming quite obvious that there are not too many places to find lamps with "true amber led's" Now if you have a couple hundred dollars burning a hole in your pocket you can buy one of the amber DiNotte sets but then you have to deal with bringing bigger batteries along on your day time ride. Personally I like to keep things as small and light weight as possible ( not to mention, inexpensive.. )

    The cheapest idea I had was to find a drop-in for the torch that utilizes a bright amber LED and has a suitable driver with an appropriate "blink/strobe" mode. Web searches brought up nothing. Then I remembered reading on CPF that there are folks that sell custom drop-in's. Didn't take me long to find the website. I then sent off an e-mail to Dave at Customlites.com to see If I could get a custom Amber drop-in. Long story short, I have a nice over-driven Cree Amber XP-E drop-in with several modes, including a strobe with a frequency that is just about perfect. Since the drop-in has memory I don't need to worry about the other modes, simple on/off function.

    I did test it with the Lux meter and at it's brightest hot spot it is almost twice as bright as what the XM-L ( with amber lens ) was. The beam pattern is a bit more narrower than the XM-L but the amber LED is also quite a bit more "orange-ish" then the XM-L with lens. I haven't had a chance to ride with it yet but I like what I'm seeing so far. If it doesn't rain today I will likely have a chance to test it ( crossing fingers ).

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