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  1. #1
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    Running dual lights

    I just got a Cygolite Centauri 1000 bike light and was planning to get another smaller light like the Lupine piko or something similar for the helmet and put the centauri on the bars. However my recent talk at the LBS left me not so positive on my decision.
    I am not new to night riding but new to LED and proper night lights, I have used for many years a cheap cateye light bar mounted that took 4 double AA batteries. lol I look back now and think how did I do it some of those nights (as I look at the beam of the sun like centauri in comparison). I was under the impression you put your main light the heavier, bigger, brighter, on the bars and the smaller ussually spot? on the helmet. The LBS guy told me that he recommends the bigger light my centauri on the helmet and to put the smaller/backup/secondary light on the bars. He says he has ran his lights in this way for over 10 years. So i'm just wondering which way do you guys/gals prefer to run your lights and is there a correct way or does it just come down to preferance?
    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    I run my big light on my bars, and my spot on my helmet.

  3. #3
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    He may ride a rigid fixie as well......
    We all have our preferences.
    I have twice as many lumens on the helmet as on the bar. Fits my ride style and terrain.
    You will be happy with a Lupine, that being said I think the Centauri on high will wash out the Piko.
    Just don't run the Centauri at full chat, balance its output to compliment the Lupine's output.
    In the end ride what works for you..........

  4. #4
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    Its all personal preference man. I have for a long time run a brighter light on the bars, than on the helmet.

    I leave the light on my bike so its not likely Im going to forget my light at home. So I always have the brighter light with me in case Id forget my helmet, backpack, second light etc. Just seems to be a nice security feature to have the brightest light all the time.

    Also with the bright light on the bars you have the brightest light always looking ahead in case you get distracted or for some reason look to the side. The helmet light in my opinion just serves to fill in that gap on the side where you are looking 'through the turn' where the headlight doesnt quite reach. I dont think you need 45 watts (or whatever a really bright led light is nowadays) to do this.

    All that being said however, if you have different light choices it may come down to which one is better suited to fit either your bars or your helmet. For example, I used to run a niterider digital pro. The battery for this light was encased in a water bottle. It was heavy, and obviously not something you would want in your backpack if you could avoid it. It would roll around, and poke you in the back unless you had a bag with pockets that fit it well. So I kept that light on the bike, and my trail rat which happens to have a much smaller battery, which is much better suited to a packpack, or pocket on my helmet. Also dont forget that the actual headlight is on your head, so a heavy lamp will be annoying... its much better to have a lighter (weight not bright) on your helmet for comfort.

  5. #5
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    I road last night with a buddy who just purchased a Cenrauri 1000.He is running it on his bars with his MityCross 400 on his helmet.Seemed like a good combo to me and no complaints about his MC been washed out from him.The Piko been brighter and a tighter beam should be a great choice for your helmet.
    As far as putting the brighter light on your helmet,,,just depends on what feels best to you and your riding style.Myself i go with the brighter floodier light on the handle bars with the spottier light on my helmet.
    Don't know if you have road with your Centauri yet? But wow!! very nice light!! The beam pattern is so smooth and all the output most would ever need.The way the beam pattern is delivered as it is so smooth i think will be more forgiving to a helmet light with less output.Just depends on how far out you want your helmet light to work for you and your riding style can often be the difference on weather it will be washed out by your more powerfull bar light.CHEERS!!!

  6. #6
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    iduno about where you ride, but can get dusty here and even worse when you ride with others. You need a spot light on the helmet to break through the dust layer other wise its like fog in your face and brighter light on the bars in case you have to turn off the helmet light for sections.

    I think your idea is correct, the 1000 on the bars and light weight Piko or similar on the lid. The helmet light us just for looking through the corners that your bike can't lean through to light up the path.

  7. #7
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    You'll probably find that regardless of beam pattern or power output that you'll end up with the less annoying light on your head. So put the heaviest, biggest light on the bar and the small, light weight one on your head.

  8. #8
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    LBS workers are not experts in everything BIKE. Everyone is different. Try both ways and decide. Big bar lights dont do squat in tight singletrack, they lag. Then a light I would put on my lid isn't so big that it weighs it down and irritates me.
    Me, I use niterider with adjustable lumen software. My bar light is dual beam, each at 500 lumen. My lid light is a single 700. They blend awesome together, without over powering each other-thanks to being able to adjust the output. Its easy to look into my turns and plan ahead and also flood the immediate (10-40 ft) area in front of me. I was using some Vistalite Nightsticks 10 and 20 watt bulbs for years. Niterider has always been the standard and leads the way now as well.

  9. #9
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    For industry leaders, I would check out the small shop guys like Scar, Troutie and a few others here. They are truly the leaders in bike lighting.

  10. #10
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    I definitely put the more powerful/heavier one on the bike. In my perception, a more powerful (or the only) light on my head throws more shadows directly away from me, making depth perception difficult.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by epicfsr04
    LBS workers are not experts in everything BIKE. Everyone is different. Try both ways and decide. Big bar lights dont do squat in tight singletrack, they lag. Then a light I would put on my lid isn't so big that it weighs it down and irritates me.
    Me, I use niterider with adjustable lumen software. My bar light is dual beam, each at 500 lumen. My lid light is a single 700. They blend awesome together, without over powering each other-thanks to being able to adjust the output. Its easy to look into my turns and plan ahead and also flood the immediate (10-40 ft) area in front of me. I was using some Vistalite Nightsticks 10 and 20 watt bulbs for years. Niterider has always been the standard and leads the way now as well.

    Well said with the possible exception of Niterider being the standard... They are decent lights, Ive used a few of them, and am still using an old trail rat thats still running strong after a few years. However in my opinion they have some quality/ reliability problems. Ive had numerous problems in the past with the switches not working properly, batteries dying, and in one case I bought a new battery, and when I tried to unplug it from the charger the cable just broke like it was made from wet toilet paper. I contacted niterider and they wouldnt do anything for me. The light was past its warranty period, but the piece that broke is something that should probably NEVER break, so I was amazed that they wouldnt cover it anyways.

  12. #12
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    I think it depends how what lights you use. I run my more powerful light on my helmet because it is a NR Pro 600 and a planet bike light on my bars. I wish I had another NR Pro 1200 to run on my bars. I think the 1200 would be too heavy on my head and like the smaller 600 on my head.

    So it depends on the lights. However, I don't want to spend $800 on bike lights for one bike.

  13. #13
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    Is it uncommon to use the same light on your bars and helmet. Example 2 MS or 2 Gemini?? Just curious
    1983 Ross Custom Deluxe Mtb
    2009 GF Cobia
    2011 NINER EMD
    2014 Giant Anthem Advanced 1 27.5

    SAVE GAS RIDE A MTB BIKE

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by MI-29er
    Is it uncommon to use the same light on your bars and helmet. Example 2 MS or 2 Gemini?? Just curious
    No MI-29er, many use the same two lights for both.Just depends on your personal preference.A pair of Gemini's for example would make a great balanced combo with aprox 1200 lumens combined and not break the bank.Many, myself included prefer a wider beam pattern for the bars while running a more narrow beam with more throw on the helmet.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by indebt
    No MI-29er, many use the same two lights for both.Just depends on your personal preference.A pair of Gemini's for example would make a great balanced combo with aprox 1200 lumens combined and not break the bank.Many, myself included prefer a wider beam pattern for the bars while running a more narrow beam with more throw on the helmet.
    Thanks for that. Know I just have to order up so lights
    1983 Ross Custom Deluxe Mtb
    2009 GF Cobia
    2011 NINER EMD
    2014 Giant Anthem Advanced 1 27.5

    SAVE GAS RIDE A MTB BIKE

  16. #16
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    Two magicshines on bars


  17. #17
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    2 Magicshines on bar, each with a modified flood lens: (Magicshine flood lens, new optics. 1 Dinotte 400L on the helmet. Decent enough for general trail riding.

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