trail riding at night what lights should i get?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    trail riding at night what lights should i get?

    so i want to start riding trails at night because during the day my job,children,wife have a monopoly on my time.
    where do i want to focus; head lamp/light or handlebar light?.
    most of the trails will be single track fairly technical. also it will be on a fat bike
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    what a lovely day

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  2. #2
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    Ideally you should get two lights, one of the helmet and one for the bars. You could get just one light and mount it on the head to start off, but eventually you will get both. Most of the lights that are sold now have a way of attaching them to the helmet and handlebar using a rubber band/oring. So they can easily be converted to a helmet or bar light at will.

    If you want to get something cheap you should check out the following lights
    Solarstorm: X2, X3, XT40,
    Yinding
    Nitefighter BT21, BT40, BT70


    Check the threads below. Most people are buying from gearbest and kaidomain these days, but in the past DX,fasttech, and lightmalls were our primary retailers. If you buy from the Chinese/Malaysian sites you can expect 3-5 weeks shipping times (free shipping). You can speed it up with more expensive shipping but it still might take two weeks. I would avoid amazon and ebay because the quality you receive varies greatly.

    The batteries that come with these light vary greatly in quality. Nitefighter seems to have the best batteries (in the set), Yinding comes with decent batteries, but some of the other batteries won't last very long or will have a reduced capacity. A lot of us just buy light heads as we already have decent batteries. Action led is a good source for quality batteries. Action led is also a good place to get light sets such those from Magicshine, Gemini and the top end Glowworm.

    A lot of lights now come in different color temperature leds. Everything used to come with cool white, which to some people seems a little harsh. But in the last six to twelve months members of the forum have convinced the manufactures to offer neutral white tint. Many people prefer this tint as it's a little more mellow and tends to bring out obstacles a little more. The downside is that it's often not as bright as the cool white. There's pictures posted in the threads. So make sure you know what you are buying.

    For more expensive, more reliable, and possible USA made lights go to the official mtbr light shootout. There's a ton of lights there. Most lights can be broadly categorized into self-contained (light and battery in one unit) and light heads with separate batteries. Both have their advantages and disadvantages.

  3. #3
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    I used just handlebar light in various iterations for a long time. Then I supplemented with a current model on helmet and it makes a big difference having both.
    If I were to go back to only 1 for trail riding im not sure which I would run.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by varider View Post
    Ideally you should get two lights, one of the helmet and one for the bars. You could get just one light and mount it on the head to start off, but eventually you will get both. Most of the lights that are sold now have a way of attaching them to the helmet and handlebar using a rubber band/oring. So they can easily be converted to a helmet or bar light at will.

    If you want to get something cheap you should check out the following lights
    Solarstorm: X2, X3, XT40,
    Yinding
    Nitefighter BT21, BT40, BT70


    Check the threads below. Most people are buying from gearbest and kaidomain these days, but in the past DX,fasttech, and lightmalls were our primary retailers. If you buy from the Chinese/Malaysian sites you can expect 3-5 weeks shipping times (free shipping). You can speed it up with more expensive shipping but it still might take two weeks. I would avoid amazon and ebay because the quality you receive varies greatly.

    The batteries that come with these light vary greatly in quality. Nitefighter seems to have the best batteries (in the set), Yinding comes with decent batteries, but some of the other batteries won't last very long or will have a reduced capacity. A lot of us just buy light heads as we already have decent batteries. Action led is a good source for quality batteries. Action led is also a good place to get light sets such those from Magicshine, Gemini and the top end Glowworm.

    A lot of lights now come in different color temperature leds. Everything used to come with cool white, which to some people seems a little harsh. But in the last six to twelve months members of the forum have convinced the manufactures to offer neutral white tint. Many people prefer this tint as it's a little more mellow and tends to bring out obstacles a little more. The downside is that it's often not as bright as the cool white. There's pictures posted in the threads. So make sure you know what you are buying.

    For more expensive, more reliable, and possible USA made lights go to the official mtbr light shootout. There's a ton of lights there. Most lights can be broadly categorized into self-contained (light and battery in one unit) and light heads with separate batteries. Both have their advantages and disadvantages.
    THIS^^^

    Great advice,,,,Only thing I'd add is if using just one light you do risk a long walk home in the dark if that light fails, and potential injury if that one light fails on a techy section of trail,, so run two lights preferably or at least carry a quality flashlight in your pack to get you home if a second light isn't an option right now.

  5. #5
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    X2 on what varider said!

    If your wanting full set up (light, battery, charger) then you just can't do better than nitefighter. Lights are same quality as yinding but batteries are BAK cells (are just as good as the big brand cells). So are actually as good as advertised. Best "full kits" available by far. None of the other "budget Chinese lights" use good cells. Solarstorm is bottom of the list for their batteries imo. Light heads are decent (xt40 is a favorite for helmet light) but battery packs are junk.

    If it was me, id get a yinding (only the ones gearbest are the real ones not junk clones or old versions) for helmet and nitefighter bt21 or bt40s for the bars. Or go with bt21 for helent and bt40s for bars.

    Like said above, you'd like the neutral white versions better. Probably with cooler white is looks brighter but see less. Due to glare and "washing out of colors" of terrain. That's my opinion though, I hate cool white emitters for purpose. We've corrupted some hard core cool white users now too lol.

    And x10 on the flashlight, even with only one light its good to carry one just in case.

    If your going light head only route. Do EXACTLY as varider said, Action Led. Pricey but warrantied and their great guys over there. Their packs are worth every penny.

  6. #6
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    What's your budget? If your budget is REALLY tight you may want to go the flashlight route (though that still means buying batteries - 18650's - and a decent charger). Maybe light set for one (bars?) and flashlight on the helmet (if helmet is suitable for mounting). Nice thing about a flashlight is that it doubles as a . . . well . . .flashlight!

    Off the top of my head, flashlight w/NW XM-L2 emitter @ +/- 1,000 lumens about $15 to $20, good budget batteries @ $18 for 4 pk Samsung, and decent budget reliable charger for $15.

    -Garry

  7. #7
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    trail riding at night what lights should i get?

    Look up scar I'm this forum. His amoeba lights are awesome!. Are they the cheapest? Nope but made in USA and great customer service. I was pondering a 24 Hr race and was offered an extra battery even if I couldn't afford it at the time......
    I do have a cookie cutter light for my bars which works pretty good, ideally I'll end up with another amoeba in the future.



    Sent from magic wish granting phone

  8. #8
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    I agree with most everything here too, go with two lights if you can and buy lights that can use the same battery packs, conntectors, and chargers so that you have options if one charger dies on you you will have another to charge batteries with. And you can use either battery pack with either light. Most common is the round magicshine type connectors. I disagree with Varider in only one area, I wouldn't hesitate to order from Amazon because it's almost always super fast shipping and a hassle free return policy.

  9. #9
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    Oh I love amazon, but options are limited and the Chinese lights are a total crap shoot. Can buy 2 of the same lights and only the case of the head ends up the same. Unless you get more brand named/expensive stuff im yet to find a battery pack with any of them that can handle an hour on highest setting. And no neutral white options

  10. #10
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    Yeah you are right about the battery packs on amazon. I haven't seen any I would consider buying off there. I wish Nitefighter would put up their battery packs on amazon and also offer all of their bike lights on there too. A search for neutral white bike lights on amazon yields a few results, but not much. For Nitefighter I only see the full kit bt40s right now on there, but the it's overpriced. Still if you see something at a good price I wouldn't hesitate to buy there. I bought 2 x Olight 18650 3400mah batteries on amazon and 1 of them ended up being DOA. I contacted Amazon and instead of mailing the batteries back to them, they told me to keep them both and they refunded me full price of both batteries as they were sold as a pair. So I got 1 free 18650 out of the deal. I ordered another pair of the Olights and they both are fine. They use panasonic 3400's so they are pretty good. I really wish we could get user replaceable battery packs for all theses type of lights.

    Amazon's selection of neutral white flashlights has improved within the last year though at least. The more neutral white is introduced to more people the better as most people I run into are used to cool white and are surprised when you show them comparisons of cool white and neutral white.

  11. #11
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    Why does someone start a thread, post an unrelated photo and included unrelated information....? Two answers, they're not being serious or they think they're on Facebook. This isn't facebook. We don't need funny photos with captions. ( one of the reasons I don't spend too much time on facebook. )

  12. #12
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    Thanks for the input people, I'm liking that nitefighter bt 21 cause it will helmet mount. Thanks tigris 99 for that breakdown/review on the bt21.
    Good to know about the tints as well.

    To answer Garry hopeing to get into night riding for eighty. The bt21 definitely fits that bill.

  13. #13
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    Look at night rider. They are decent quality and all over ebay for under $50

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by tigris99 View Post
    If it was me, id get a yinding (only the ones gearbest are the real ones not junk clones or old versions) for helmet and nitefighter bt21 or bt40s for the bars.
    Why not BT21 on both? What makes a Yinding more optimal for a helmet than the BT21?

  15. #15
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    Nothing wrong with it but yinding is lighter and a bit better spot. Bt21 has frosted optics so throw isn't great. Definitely doable, but recommend optics change on bt21 for helmet.

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