New lights this winter, what's good?

Discussion in 'General Cycling' started by Andy Morris, Sep 18, 2011.

  1. Andy Morris

    Andy Morris Guest

    My Lumicycles are getting a bit tired after 5 years, the batteries
    holding less charge and the cables are fraying at the joints. What's
    good for the ukrcm collective?

    My choices so far are.

    Some nice new LED Lumicycles - the devil you know and all that.
    http://www.lumicycle.com/product/231/single-light-systems.htm
    http://preview.tinyurl.com/5wvg9jb

    Nice single unit light, designed for road riding from exposure - very
    shiny and no hassle with cables.
    http://www.exposurelights.com/product/000076/strada-mk.3/
    http://preview.tinyurl.com/64oe7w4

    Much cheaper, but looks good.
    http://www.magicshineuk.co.uk/products/Magicshine-bike-light-set-MJ-808LSET
    http://preview.tinyurl.com/3cj7zgw

    Anyone had any experience of any of these?
     
    Andy Morris, Sep 18, 2011
    #1
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  2. Andy Morris

    Phil W Lee Guest

    None of those directly, but I can recommend the B&M Ixon IQ which has
    a great beam shape, adequate output, 5 to 20 hour battery life on low
    self discharge NiMH cells, and is fully legal as it meets German
    standards (so gets through on euro harmonisation).
    Good mounting options too, with extra brackets available so you can
    move it between bikes..

    If you want to upgrade to generator use, it can even take it's input
    from that (via a ride & charge cable), and recharge the cells (AA x 4)
    during daylight, making a useful torch for fixing flats in the dark or
    camping on tour.
     
    Phil W Lee, Sep 19, 2011
    #2
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  3. Andy Morris

    Simon Mason Guest

    I have used an Exposure Six Pack for the last 9 months.
    1800 lumens and no cables or battery packs, but the snag is the cost,
    but hopefully it will be the only light I will ever need and I was
    reading the other day that cycle light brightness is nearing its limit
    now due to issues with dumping the heat from ever more powerful
    lights, so I shouldn't be tempted to upgrade it.

    http://www.bikeradar.com/gear/categ...ont/product/review-exposure-six-pack-10-39881
     
    Simon Mason, Sep 19, 2011
    #3
  4. What is the point, unless you're planning on heading off-road down a
    mountainside at night?
    Can you *really* keep the beam below motorist and cyclist eye height?
     
    Julian Bradfield, Sep 19, 2011
    #4
  5. Andy Morris

    bugbear Guest

    So - effective life of expensive product is only five years?!

    Bugger that.

    BugBear
     
    bugbear, Sep 19, 2011
    #5
  6. Andy Morris

    bugbear Guest

    Improvements in efficiency could change that.

    BugBear
     
    bugbear, Sep 19, 2011
    #6
  7. Andy Morris

    Simon Mason Guest

    One bit of my commute is an ex railway line with no lighting which is
    around four miles long, plus I live in an area that has lots of
    country roads with no street lighting and cycle there on some evenings
    in winter. With that light, I am no longer restricted to keeping to
    lighted areas and as you can see, it points down at quite a sharp
    angle to avoid blinding oncoming drivers/cyclists.

    http://www.swldxer.co.uk/light.jpg
     
    Simon Mason, Sep 19, 2011
    #7
  8. Andy Morris

    Simon Mason Guest

    Yes, but not the exponential rise as seen in memory and data storage
    though.
    For example, the 2012 Six Pack has gone from 1800 to 1925 lumens, but
    I am not going to shell out for an extra 125 lumens.
     
    Simon Mason, Sep 19, 2011
    #8
  9. Interesting. I only have a short unlit stretch, but I find my modest 120
    lumen lamp quite sufficient - indeed, unless I'm in a hurry, I don't
    normally bother to switch it up from 1/4 power. And if your lamp is
    pointed so sharply down, how do you get the long distance view?
    Mine is almost horizontal but has a hand-crafted shield to cut the
    beam off on top. (Wonderful stuff, polymorph.)
     
    Julian Bradfield, Sep 19, 2011
    #9
  10. Andy Morris

    Simon Mason Guest

    When I am cycling on unlit tracks or roads, I am only riding at around
    15mph or so and the light illuminates a pool of light around the same
    distance in front as an ASL, so there is plenty of time to come to a
    halt or swerve if it shows an obstruction. I suppose I could raise it
    to illuminate the path for a further distance when there is no
    oncoming traffic and lower it when I am on the roads again, but that
    would mean leaving it loose enough to move by hand or carry a hex key,
    but that would be too much faffage.
     
    Simon Mason, Sep 19, 2011
    #10
  11. I'm sticking with the SON plus B&M solution :)

    Guy
     
    Just zis Guy, you know?, Sep 19, 2011
    #11
  12. Andy Morris

    Ian Jackson Guest

    That is rather disappointing, isn't it ?

    I'm using a sealed lead-acid battery to drive B&M front and rear
    dynamo lights, which works well for me. I've had the same battery for
    a decade now and it's showing no signs of wear. It used to run for at
    least an hour or two when I had ~18W of halogen lighting; now it's
    driving LEDs I imagine it must last for hours and hours. I plug the
    bike into a charger in the shed.

    You can probably tell that I don't do long night rides :). The only
    real downside is that the battery is quite heavy (and you can't drill
    holes in it to save weight).
     
    Ian Jackson, Sep 19, 2011
    #12
  13. I suppose you /could/, but it's unlikely to end well.

    Guy
     
    Just zis Guy, you know?, Sep 19, 2011
    #13
  14. I've had my Lumicycles for about 10 years now, they're still working.
    Though they have had quite a few replacement bulbs (and I've now
    converted them to LED), and the battery probably doesn't last as long,
    though no problems with the cables.
    I'm not exactly using them regularly, more like once a week or so on the
    mountain bike. If used daily for commuting, they would probably wear out
    more.
    At least with Lumicycle, you get them repaired, or buy spares for most
    parts.

    If the 5 year old Lumicycles are halogens, then I would say its worth
    upgrading to LEDs. They are brighter, plus better battery life, and the
    option of different light levels, and no worries about blowing bulbs etc.
     
    Craig Wallace, Sep 19, 2011
    #14
  15. Andy Morris

    Danny Colyer Guest

    Likewise (except for the LED conversion). One of my Lumis (the one that
    didn't fall off and get run over by a car) still works perfectly well
    after about 10 years. I haven't noticed any problem with the battery,
    but I wouldn't expect it to hold charge as well as it did when new.
    Mine have been used for commuting throughout the winter since I bought
    them, although since I got the Edelux I've only been using one of them
    and then only for the last 3/4 mile of my evening commute. My commute
    has now changed and I'll probably be using both the Lumi and the Edelux
    for the entire ride this winter.
     
    Danny Colyer, Sep 28, 2011
    #15
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