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  1. #1
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    Self-contained rechargeable front light for roadbike

    So I'm set on the MTB with my Betty and Tesla. However, I don't want to use up a water bottle mount with my Betty battery. Is there a reasonably-priced and reliable light I can use for the front of my road bike? It needs to be self-contained and stable for the bar. I think 600 lumens would be the minimum. Run time- 1.5 hrs minimum at full on...if I can step the power down to get more runtime, that would help. My road rides are usually 2 hours at night. I have been looking at options but also have been a bit unplugged from the light scene for a couple of years, so I am starting from scratch.

    Since I am getting back into the MTB scene, I need to supplement my riding with road rides since the trails are often snow/ice packed in the winter. Yeah, I could use my Camelbak in the roadbike but I'd rather not. It isn't as comfortable as on the MTB and bounces around too much as well. I could also use a helmet light but my road helmet's shape isn't very conducive to a light mount.

  2. #2
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    There's a lot of these types of lights. Lezyne, Niterider, Cygolite, Light and Motion etc. I like the ones with on-the-fly battery replacement. I think they are around the $100-$120 range on amazon. They usually last around an hour and half and most of the use a cree xm-l emitter. Newer models with xm-l2 emitter are also in the process of coming out. They are brighter and run a little bit cooler than the old emitter. I think they all recharge via USB. I think they are perfect for road use.

  3. #3
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    Thanks, I am looking into these. It would be nice to get one with the new emitter, but I need one pretty quickly. This way, I will not run out of water, and then desperately search for a convenience store.

  4. #4
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    My kids have the Taz800 (now Taz1000) from Light and Motion and we'd highly recommend it for a road application. Absolutely excellent beam that definitely punches above it's weight. I think BikTiresdirect has them on sale for $173 or so.

    ... or buy a smaller Lupine battery that you just attach to the frame.

    J.

  5. #5
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    Got anything against a flashlight setup with a two fish handlebar mount? I am using 2 PD35's right now-- one on the handlebars, one on the helmet with some rechargeable 18650 batteries and think it is a great combo that is lighter weight than most integrated setups of the same brightness, and has way more usability off the bike as well.

  6. #6
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    for self-contained bar light i would look at Light & Motion Taz and the Exposure range.

    with the Taz the mount might be a weak link, however i'm sure the light itself is great. with Exposure you will probably get a stronger mount, but less optimized beam.

  7. #7
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    The Exposures looks to be very bright and decent quality but the beam has a super-bright/reflective hotspot, from some reviews I am reading. I am looking into these (including Taz, Urban, etc.) and checking beam patterns and reviews as well.

    Nothing against flashlight setups either, though I need to examine the mount setups more closely. On the roadbike, practically anything goes.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flyer View Post
    The Exposures looks to be very bright and decent quality but the beam has a super-bright/reflective hotspot, from some reviews I am reading. I am looking into these (including Taz, Urban, etc.) and checking beam patterns and reviews as well.

    Nothing against flashlight setups either, though I need to examine the mount setups more closely. On the roadbike, practically anything goes.
    i would still consider wired systems. a 2 cell battery can be mounted on the stem for example. i also have a problem with not having space for all my batteries on the frame but i would rather get creative than go self-contained.

  9. #9
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    I think you want something with bright hot spot, rather than a even flood, on a road bike. The reason being is that you want to overpower any ambient light from cars, street lights etc. You do need some spill however, to prevent getting T-boned at intersections.

  10. #10
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    I ride on the road all the time. You also want something with a bit of flood to it. Lupine's 22-26 degree wide beams are pretty much perfect. They give decent spill over the entire road and have plenty of throw for even going 50Mph on a bike (not recommended at night but you could). Same is true for the L&M Taz800 or 1000. They both have a beam that is excellent on the road.

    Really, I don't find much difference between lights on the road or the trail, the difference is on the trail, you can usually get away with less lumens. In other words, the beam characteristics work well in either application but a trail. On the road, you are typically going faster which also asks for more lumens.

    Where I think you do need different beam characteristics is in a helmet light. I like my helmet lights to tend towards spot instead of flood. So, in the Lupine world the Pika is 22 degree beam and the Wilmas are 26. I'd prefer something near 18 or so on the helmet to work with the 26 on the bars.

    J.

  11. #11
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    I have a taz 1200 that I use on my road bike and I have no complaints with it. The beam pattern is fantastic and for the way I have been utilizing it has proved successful. I ride early morning to where it will be about 1 hour or so of total darkness. I use race mode at 1000 lumens and then switch to flash mode (not pulse) when there is enough light to see with. These rides last anywhere from 3-4 hours depending on distance and speed. The pace I run with the taz1200 in darkness is about 22-24 mph.

    I bought the taz because I simply wanted to try it. I am still considering maybe picking up a couple exposure lights and piggy back 3 cell battery and the seca 2000 enduros and testing them against each other. I have reason for that much output but I am curious as to how they actually work and to see what all the hype is about for each brand.

    Other lights I have are lupine (piko, piko TL, Betty TL, Betty r etc), Blackburn, serfas, etc. So I like the idea of challenging one brand vs another and trying to get my head around the compromised and how they can interfere with my intended use of the lights.

    Sorry for rambling on.

  12. #12
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    Taz 800 or 1200 both are perfect and have the best beam patterns available.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ozzy43 View Post
    Taz 800 or 1200 both are perfect and have the best beam patterns available.
    I'd agree with that and I'm a Lupine guy. The L&M Taz lights are really superb.

    J.

  14. #14
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    I use the L&M Urban 500 and its plenty bright for road use, I would want more for trails though

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
    I'd agree with that and I'm a Lupine guy. The L&M Taz lights are really superb.

    J.
    for a commuter light you would be hard pressed to do better. but for training the battery life will be limiting - of course that's the problem with all self-contained lights, not unique to the Taz.

    that said, the 4 hour battery life of something like NiteFlux Red Zone 8 is already pushing it.

    the actual battery lives i have on my lights are:

    seca - 3 hours ( on high ) // using extra battery i have // can be further extended with more batteries
    niteflux - 4 hours ( on high blink )
    dosun - 5.5 hours ( on high )
    dinotte - 6 hours ( on high blink )
    monkeylectric - about 10 hours ( on high )
    trek beacon - about 20 hours

    i've had a light that had only 2 hour run time ( Philips SafeRide ) but i eliminated it for that reason.

    i personally wouldn't buy a self-contained headlight because none of them have adequate run time. but i already made that point before.

    right now i only do 3 hour rides. but i only been riding for 3 months since i took a 2 year break due to injuries, and 3 months ago i was only riding for 15 minutes, so i hope to be doing longer rides eventually. as of right now i would like any light i'm looking at to get 6 hours of battery life on high. i realize no good headlight can do this on a single battery, but that's what extra batteries are for.

    of course if the OP only needs 2 hours of burn time he could run the Taz on full for an hour and on half power for another hour. that's what i used to do with the Seca, but then i just got a spare battery.

  16. #16
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    The lezyne and cygolite's batteries can be replaced on the trail (or road). You can carry spare batteries in your jacket or pack. This means you can ride as long as you want. It's simply not as big of an issue as androspam makes it out to be.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by androgen View Post
    ....
    of course if the OP only needs 2 hours of burn time he could run the Taz on full for an hour and on half power for another hour. that's what i used to do with the Seca, but then i just got a spare battery.

    I run my taz 1200 in race mode high (1000 lumens) and it will run like that for 2 hours. That should put it in the realm of what the op wants. There isn't much perceivable difference between the 1200 lumen and the 1000 lumen output on the taz1200

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