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  1. #1
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    Responsive all purpose bike light

    Hi, I'm a third year student at University currently carrying out a project designing a responsive bicycle light, mainly aimed at mountain biking, but that is also versatile for use on the road.
    The concept is to have a mode that uses a light dependent resistor to alter the headlight intensity depending on the light conditions. The original idea was generated from mountain biking in the day, to illuminate dark patches on the trail caused by tree shadows. However the other intention is from cycling on roads with street lights, to turning onto an unlit path or trail, without the need to toggle between modes. Maximum intensity would be around 1000 Lumens for trail riding and turning to a single LED for road riding.
    Any feedback would be greatly appreciated, and is vital to ensure I design something useful!
    Thanks,
    Mark

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by MWILFORD View Post
    Hi, I'm a third year student at University currently carrying out a project designing a responsive bicycle light, mainly aimed at mountain biking, but that is also versatile for use on the road.
    The concept is to have a mode that uses a light dependent resistor to alter the headlight intensity depending on the light conditions. The original idea was generated from mountain biking in the day, to illuminate dark patches on the trail caused by tree shadows. However the other intention is from cycling on roads with street lights, to turning onto an unlit path or trail, without the need to toggle between modes. Maximum intensity would be around 1000 Lumens for trail riding and turning to a single LED for road riding.
    Any feedback would be greatly appreciated, and is vital to ensure I design something useful!
    Thanks,
    Mark
    this idea basically SUX, i can explain why if you want.

    on the other hand there are some clever lights that determine bike speed and adjust output depending on speed.

    the clever-est light ( Busch & Muller Luxos U ) will adjust both output and beam shape based on speed. you can read up about it.

    generally there is a lot of room for innovation with bike lights - A LOT ! especially when it comes to bike safety lights.

    here's me riding with some unusual lights:

    Bike Lights Demonstration - YouTube

    if you want to design an original / creative bike light i might help you come up with ideas, but i'll tell you right now you will not be able to design a good headlight - getting a good beam pattern is too difficult - only the biggest light companies are able to do it.

    for a little guy if you want to make something special you should focus on innovation in safety lights.

    also the professor will give you more credit for a safety innovation for commuting than something designed for a recreational activity like mountain biking. you win nobel prize for saving lives, not for coming up with better ways to have fun. the professor will also appreciate that bike safety innovation will lead to more bikes and fewer cars on the road and therefore fewer carbon emissions.

    if you insist on making a headlight a much better design would be to measure bike speed ( this is a common function of cycling computers so you can find out how it's done ) and then have high and low beams on your light, and turn off the high beam when speed drops. this is basically what B&M Luxos does, but the Luxos is a dynamo powered light and it turns off high beam when the dynamo isn't making enough power - so it doesn't actually measure speed - it just makes the best of available power at any given moment.

    there is a light by a british company called Full Beam Fusion Speed that is battery powered and actually measures bike speed and varies the power accordingly - but it doesn't vary beam shape ( high vs low beams ) only the output power.

    additional benefit of varying output with speed is that more cooling is available for the LEDs at speed ( wind ).

    also, there is a special DIY ( Do It Yourself ) lights forum section here on MTBR - that's where your question really belongs i think.

    if you want an idea on how to build an excellent light check this thread there:

    Mission Impossible: XML conversion for the Philips SafeRide (parts 1 through 5)

    good luck !

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