Philips Saferide mod with Cree XM-L HI- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Philips Saferide mod with Cree XM-L HI

    Inspired by pethelman who did the "Mission Impossible: XML conversion for the Philips SafeRide". I also did the same but instead of using a the big Philips Saferide 80 (powered by battery) I took the small Philips saferide pedelec 80 (for e-bikes).


    My mission: to have a bright light without blinding incoming traffic (as close STVO compliant as possible). I replace the orginal LED by cree XP-L V6.
    But the result was terrible. Causing by the dome sizes of the LEDs are much bigger than original Philips. The beam pattern is totally ruined. I'm totally frustrated.
    As Pethelman mention the beam is bit more diffuse and here is the problem.


    But luckily there is a solution since 29.04.2015 Cree release a new serie Cree XP-L High Intensity without dome! I know in the other post you guys are already talking about the Cree XP-L HI.


    Don't get me wrong, I don't want to blame Pethelman. He did a great job and I'm very thankful for his great post and sharing with us. The first one who did the mission impossible. :-) Unfortunately the domeless Leds wasn't available to that time...


    I want to help/share everyone who also want to modified a Philips Saferide and dreaming from a very bright lamp for the road without blinding incoming traffic. Additional showing the difference beetween XP-L V6 (with dome) and Cree XP-L HI (without dome).


    But first of all I want to explain you why the beam is such important to allowed understanding the issue.


    1. The lamp has to facing down to the ground to not blinding incoming traffic. Means the angle of the lamp cannot by higher than the horizontal (otherwise the beam getting higher as further as it's go).

    Philips Saferide mod with Cree XM-L HI-1-correct-angle.jpg


    2. The beam pattern should be as even as possible. Means same brightness at 5 meter, 10 meter, 15 meter,... But that mean we need a very special beam pattern. The brightest point „hot spot“ has to be as top as possible and shouldn't be wide! Because the distance is the longest. It will automatically getting wider. Addional it needs the most light to get the light up with the same brightness as more the near field.

    Philips Saferide mod with Cree XM-L HI-2-distance.jpg


    How does a perfect beam looks like? Check the beam pattern of your car ;-) or the pic below with the beam pattern of the Philips lamp with the original leds. (I took the all pic with my smartphone which unfortunately only has an automatic mode, no same settings possible, but still enough to show you the difference).
    As you can see the brightest point is in the middle near the cut off the top. (Those blue, green, red tapes on the wall are for position and focus for the camera).

    Philips Saferide mod with Cree XM-L HI-3-philips-ori-beam.jpg


    But after the mod with Cree XP-L V6 the beam pattern looks like this.

    Philips Saferide mod with Cree XM-L HI-4-xp-l-v6.jpg

    The brighest point is far away from cut off / top and more diffuse than the original. Which is very bad. Because:


    -Nearfield is too bright, because the brighest point is in the middle
    -The brighest point is more diffuse that means a larger area getting the same brightness: Let's say for the 5 meter and 15 meter distance the same brightness. At 5 meter the beam is too bright and at 15 meter it's too dark (it's darker becase further away. But we need more light to get a even beam pattern!!!).


    The result is a total ruined beam pattern with too much light at near field / short distance and while to less light for the long distance. What you can do with this beam pattern to light up more further? By changing the angle higher and blinding the incoming traffic. But the cut off is useless because it is too far top. The pic below was taken by Pethelman with his mod saferide.

    Philips Saferide mod with Cree XM-L HI-5-xml.jpg


    Unfortunately I have to say the result from Pethelman with Cree XML Leds is very bad. More lumen doesn't mean to see more or further away.


    The next thing I tried was trying to change the position of the LED to get the brighest spot near to the cut off. It did work but the the beam pattern got total diffused...


    Now the final solution: using LEDs without dome (Cree XP-L HI). Which allowed to get a simliar beam pattern like the original Philips LEDs.

    Philips Saferide mod with Cree XM-L HI-6-beam-xp-l-hi.jpg


    Very important is the position of the leds. Every millimetre has a big impact! I spend over 1 day to find the perfect position.

    Philips Saferide mod with Cree XM-L HI-7-reflect.jpg


    But one thing need to be change in my eyes: The light spots outside around the beam (red X).

    Philips Saferide mod with Cree XM-L HI-8-light-spots.jpg

    They are OK with the original LEDs with ~400 Lumen. But not with 2000 Lumen. Those small light spots are blinding.


    I hope I can find in the next days time to post more pics from my mod. otherwise at the weekend. ;-) Too bad I do not have a good camera. Only my shitty smartphone...


    Sorry, for my bad english. Hope you understand what I'm saying. ;-)

  2. #2
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    Nice project!!

    Those "flares" in the picture are really odd. Does the reflector have facets in it that create them?
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  3. #3
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    The artifacts are in the lens. The are not pronounced when pushing 300lm, but they are there. Hence the problem of trying to push a lot of light through a lens not designed for the task.

    There's not anything that will fix the heavy spread of light because the Saferide 80 does not have a mechanical cutoff. If you are going to use single LED's pushing high lumens, there's not really any way to get a tight cut-off except putting them behind a half-dome lens and using a mechanical cut-off.

    There's a reason this was done with halogens and HID's. With a combination of a complex lens and a reflector one could get an ok cutoff, but not one that would be compliant when pushing higher lumens.

    Stay within the output range of the older fluted lenses (1200 at best) and you could be ok, but if you want to run high power and be compliant, you've got to include a mechanical cutoff.
    I will suffer no butt-hurt fools!

  4. #4
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    @Flamingtaco You are totally right. The solution is a mechanical cutoff.

    I used an aluminium strip to get an cut off around the middle.

    Philips Saferide mod with Cree XM-L HI-9-front.jpg

    Philips Saferide mod with Cree XM-L HI-10-front.jpg

    Philips Saferide mod with Cree XM-L HI-12-beam-pat.jpg

    The impact to the beam pattern isn't a big deal. Getting a little bit darker and smaller. But those "flares" are gone.

    I could do a test on the road and the result is pretty awesome. Good beam pattern while the lamp is heading to floor to avoid blinding incoming traffic.
    Unfortunately the quality of the pic is very bad. Smartphone camera at night... I will try to organize a good camera.

    Philips Saferide mod with Cree XM-L HI-11-first-test.jpg

  5. #5
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    If you read up a lot on optics maybe you can design something that will work very good.
    this site is about optics Amateur Telescope Optics now its mostly about telescopes but its all closely related.
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  6. #6
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    For a sharp cut off, you need a shield near the LED. Most block maybe 15-20% of total output.

    A good rule of thumb, though, is if drivers stop flashing you. I think most of us can achieve good results with some crafty shielding on the lens, or a cover extending forward of the lens to reduce upward bound light. Ultimately, though, I'd like to see lamps designed to meet NHTSA standards. Ideal would be an internal mechanical cutoff that can be moved away from the LED with a switch, much like they did with the dual HID bulbs for a while.

    Even better would be moveable optics that retain use of otherwise wasted light, but, $$$.
    I will suffer no butt-hurt fools!

  7. #7
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    The artefacts obviusly come from one led shining into the reflector of the other one. Here is how you stop that happening.

    I'm still looking for a good optic for road-biking. If only Phillips would sell these reflectors, or the chinese would finally copy them ...

  8. #8
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    That CPF thread is really good!!!

    I'm another that would really like to get a few of the Phillips reflectors.
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  9. #9
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    Sorry for the thread dig, but I have my hands on a philips saferide where the battery compartment has busted, so I am planning to modify it as a dynamo light. My circuit produces a max of 0.75A, so based on a die size of 3mm, I am tossing up between XP-L hi & XP-G2. Either should produce a significant boost on the original luxeon rebels, although I will test it with the originals in battery configuration & dynamo first.

    Any other suggestions for leds?

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