View Poll Results: Lumens needed for nighttime riding on singletrack?

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  • 300+

    0 0%
  • 400+

    2 4.08%
  • 500+

    4 8.16%
  • 600+

    3 6.12%
  • 700+

    5 10.20%
  • 800+

    2 4.08%
  • 900+

    2 4.08%
  • 1000+

    19 38.78%
  • Higher....no higher....yea that's good

    9 18.37%
  • I like a challenge, I ride in the dark (lol)

    3 6.12%
Results 1 to 18 of 18
  1. #1
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    Suggested Lumens For Night Riding On Singletrack

    How many lumens are suggested for night riding on singletrack? What is the required lowest amount of lumens in your book? What is adequate? What is convenient, but not necessarily needed, but yet helpful? It would be nice if you know of any that are less than $100, but I understand if that's not possible. Quality and Cheap don't ride in the same lane normally.

    It's hard to get a good consensus when googling. I've seen some articles/forums that say 600 and up. I some that say 800 and up. I see some that say absolutely no less than 1000.

  2. #2
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    check out Stupid Bright, new company in SF, i just got a 1k lumen light for 50 bucks. it is supposed to run 3hrs at full power and 6hrs at 500 lumen. it also has a flasher setting. I'm no too stoked on the way it mounts but if that's my biggest problem with it I will be fine. Also comes with a strap to wear on your head.
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  3. #3
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    A more pertinent question would be: how fast do you wish to go?

    300 lumens is more than enough as long as you aren't going fast.

  4. #4
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    I started with couple 320 lumen cygolites then bumped to 600 then 800 then (2) 1200 lumen Gloworm's.

    I will say that when I started to 320's were fine but as I got faster I noticed I needed brighter and more throw - width and distance.

    What I like about my Gloworm's is I can run a lot on super-low or low but then bump to medium or high for the faster stuff. I figure it helps get me little longer overall run times.

    I've got lots of lights and always end up loaning some out but my 'go to' lights are the Gloworm's unless I'm hitting a real fast downhill then I bust out my big 2200 beast

    My 2cents,
    Ed

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by sfgiantsfan View Post
    check out Stupid Bright, new company in SF, i just got a 1k lumen light for 50 bucks. it is supposed to run 3hrs at full power and 6hrs at 500 lumen. it also has a flasher setting. I'm no too stoked on the way it mounts but if that's my biggest problem with it I will be fine. Also comes with a strap to wear on your head.
    It looks to have a really good spread of light! And waaaaay cheaper than anything I've seen for the amount of light it appears to be throwing.

    Quote Originally Posted by wschruba View Post
    A more pertinent question would be: how fast do you wish to go?

    300 lumens is more than enough as long as you aren't going fast.
    I really don't know. As fast as I do in the day time. I don't want to be limited. I'm not riding for leisure, but for fast and fun times.

    Quote Originally Posted by NitroRC Ed View Post
    I started with couple 320 lumen cygolites then bumped to 600 then 800 then (2) 1200 lumen Gloworm's.

    I will say that when I started to 320's were fine but as I got faster I noticed I needed brighter and more throw - width and distance.

    What I like about my Gloworm's is I can run a lot on super-low or low but then bump to medium or high for the faster stuff. I figure it helps get me little longer overall run times.

    I've got lots of lights and always end up loaning some out but my 'go to' lights are the Gloworm's unless I'm hitting a real fast downhill then I bust out my big 2200 beast

    My 2cents,
    Ed
    I will look into these also. The more suggestions the merrier!

  6. #6
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    I run 2 1400 lunen lights on the bars and one on my helmet. It's enough light that other guys can ride in front of me after their batteries are dead. The next lights that I build will be even brighter.

    That said, 15 years ago I started with a flashlight taped to my helmet and somehow I got out of the woods in one piece. Night riding is a lot more fun now that lighting technology has improved and the lights are down right cheap.

    Buy all that you can and you won't be sorry that you don't have more light at the end of a ride.

    Good luck

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by .40AET View Post
    I run 2 1400 lunen lights on the bars and one on my helmet. It's enough light that other guys can ride in front of me after their batteries are dead. The next lights that I build will be even brighter.

    That said, 15 years ago I started with a flashlight taped to my helmet and somehow I got out of the woods in one piece. Night riding is a lot more fun now that lighting technology has improved and the lights are down right cheap.

    Buy all that you can and you won't be sorry that you don't have more light at the end of a ride.

    Good luck
    Lol!!!!! Wow.........a flashlight!?!! Boy were you brave. Do you have any suggestions on brands and possibly ones that are not too badly priced?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by uneek78 View Post
    How many lumens are suggested for night riding on singletrack? What is the required lowest amount of lumens in your book? ...
    Since terrain differs from moment to moment while mountain biking these questions are not easy to answer. The amount of light and beam pattern that works in one situation will not necessarily work in others. Add to that is that you really should use two lamps ( helmet and bar mounted ) for added safety ( for better visibility on turns and in case one lamp fails ).

    With this in mind I would recommend 300 lumen on the bars ( minimum ) and 300 lumen on the helmet ( minimum ). With a total output of 600 lumen this should work in most situations ( As long as your ride doesn't require a high speed downhill run.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    Since terrain differs from moment to moment while mountain biking these questions are not easy to answer. The amount of light and beam pattern that works in one situation will not necessarily work in others. Add to that is that you really should use two lamps ( helmet and bar mounted ) for added safety ( for better visibility on turns and in case one lamp fails ).

    With this in mind I would recommend 300 lumen on the bars ( minimum ) and 300 lumen on the helmet ( minimum ). With a total output of 600 lumen this should work in most situations ( As long as your ride doesn't require a high speed downhill run.
    I recon these lights must be wide angle unlike a flashlight. Would you suggest any particular brand?

  10. #10
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    A problem gathering info like this is most riders have no idea how many Lumen their lights really produce. Most of the answers you'll get will be the light's claimed output. A look at the shootout thread shows there are wildly varying real versus claimed outputs.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by uneek78 View Post
    I recon these lights must be wide angle unlike a flashlight. Would you suggest any particular brand?
    Actually you would be surprised how well some flashlights ( torches ) work. Regardless a dedicated set of bike lights is best. A bike light with a nice medium width beam pattern on the bars would be preferred. A more narrow beam pattern is preferred for the helmet.

    There are lots of lights to chose from depending on how much money you are willing to spend. The more money you spend the more features you can expect as well as a better battery. Still, if you know what you're looking for you can find a good lamp/battery for less money.

    I really don't like to tell people what to buy unless they have narrowed the field down to two or three choices. Then ( if asked ) I might tell them which of the ones I like best and why.

  12. #12
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    Solo riding 600 is more than enough, with others riders or racing as much as you can afford.

  13. #13
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    Well, I have a ton of research to do. I guess that's why I find it easy to go to REI. There's so many brands on the market. Small and large companies. So many you really can't even find a decent pool of reviews on several of them. The large companies get the most reviews. That doesn't mean they're the best; but they charge like they are.

  14. #14
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    depends...

    I have riden fast with a Surefire flashlight (240 lumens) on my helmet. It had a drop in with lots of spill to allow me to see a good area with a piercing spot to allow me to see far ahead)

    Many things will determine how much light do you need:
    -your night vision
    -riding skills
    -terrain (familiar/unfamiliar?, technical? twisty?)
    -speed
    -beam pattern (one of the most important factors IMO)
    -night conditions: full moon, no moon, open areas or inside trees, etc?

    With that been said, 500 is a good starting point although nowadays you can get way more from pretty much any system
    Last edited by BBW; 12-30-2012 at 07:59 PM. Reason: typos
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by uneek78 View Post
    Well, I have a ton of research to do. I guess that's why I find it easy to go to REI. There's so many brands on the market. Small and large companies. So many you really can't even find a decent pool of reviews on several of them. The large companies get the most reviews. That doesn't mean they're the best; but they charge like they are.
    I wouldn't limit yourself to REI or the LBS's. Check out the banner ads here on MTBR. Also check out the Bike Light Shootout link here also on MTBR. If you're looking for reviews this is the place to look. If you get a good idea of what you're interested in run a search here in the Lights and Night riding forum to dig up the threads on the lights you're interested in.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    I wouldn't limit yourself to REI or the LBS's. Check out the banner ads here on MTBR. Also check out the Bike Light Shootout link here also on MTBR. If you're looking for reviews this is the place to look. If you get a good idea of what you're interested in run a search here in the Lights and Night riding forum to dig up the threads on the lights you're interested in.
    I'll take a look around MTBR and see what I come up with. Thanks!

  17. #17
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    I run 2 1000 lumens DiNotte XML X 3's. They melt retinas.
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by irishpitbull View Post
    I run 2 1000 lumens DiNotte XML X 3's. They melt retinas.
    Thanks!!! I will put that on my list of ones to research.

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