Lights

Discussion in 'Lights' started by Derkderkall, Sep 7, 2017.

  1. Derkderkall

    Derkderkall Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Covina
    Name:
    Derek Allison
    Current Bike:
    2012 Rockhopper 29
    The days are getting shorter, my time in the saddle was pretty sad last winter due to the early darkness and the fact that I don't have a light. So.

    Good lights for night riding? Suggestions that won't break the bank?
    How many lumens do you have?
     
    Mikie, mike, DangerDirtyD and 2 others like this.
  2. Faust29

    Faust29 MTB Addict

    Location:
    Rancho Santa Margarita
    Name:
    Steve
    Current Bike:
    Chameleon & Highball C
    You're going to get quite a few answers, I'm sure!

    I've been running Amazon cheapies at a claimed 500 lumens for a couple years now, but one of them recently bit the dust. One still functions fine, but it's time to upgrade... I like to ride at night, but feel pretty vulnerable with a single point of failure.


    Current Amazon Cheapie:
    Unknown.jpeg
     
    Mikie, mike and Runs with Scissors like this.
  3. Runs with Scissors

    Runs with Scissors MTB Addict

    Location:
    West Anaheim
    Name:
    Mark Whitaker
    Current Bike:
    2015 Giant XTC Advanced 1 29er
    Don't cheap out on the lights if you want to ride at night. Save yer ducats, get a NiteRider 750 or better. They work. They cost, but dammit they work!!!! If anyone runs you over, they won't be able to say they didn't see you. :whistling:
     
    ricke24, MattB, Cyclotourist and 4 others like this.
  4. Sidewalk

    Sidewalk Well-Known Member

    Location:
    HorsetownUSA
    Name:
    Josh
    Current Bike:
    N+1
    Best advice.

    That said, I have a Brighteyes 1200, buying the new 1600. Actual output is about half that. But sub $50. Good support, cheap replacement batteries and they honor the warranty.

    https://www.brighteyesproducts.com/collections/frontpage
     
  5. Grego

    Grego MTB Addict

    Location:
    Fullerton
    Name:
    joe
    Current Bike:
    WFO9
    Niterider lights have worked well for me. Since 2011 I've had 250 that has been on over 1000 rides and still working. Since then I also use a 300 and a 650. I like the all in one package meaning the battery and light is one piece. Mounts on the bars in seconds while others are still fumbling around with battery packs and wires.
     
  6. littlewave

    littlewave MTB Addict

    Location:
    Newport Beach
    Name:
    Brett
    Current Bike:
    Ibis Ripley LS
    I have a Niterider 750. Only used it on the road so far, no trails close by where night riding is legal. That said, I'd suggest a bar light AND a helmet light.
     
    Cyclotourist, Mikie, mike and 4 others like this.
  7. rossage

    rossage MTB Addict

    Location:
    East Sacramento
    Name:
    Ross Lawson
    Current Bike:
    Highball
    I am currently using Serfas lights, bar and helmet. Good products at a good price. My 950 is very similar to the Nitrider just different logos on the side.
     
    Mikie, mike, Faust29 and 2 others like this.
  8. DangerDirtyD

    DangerDirtyD MTB Addict

    Location:
    La Verne, CA
    Name:
    Dennis (AKA Dio)
    Current Bike:
    2013 Trek Slash 9 (26er)
    Whatever you choose, I recommend avoiding the Chinese knock-offs regardless of savings. You get what you pay for, and cancer is cheap these days. Wash your hands after handling any of the lights since they contain lead.

    A helmet and handlebar combo is ideal. If you wanna BE SEEN at night 250 lumens is enough. However, if you want TO SEE at night, go with a combo of at least 750 lumens on the handlebar and 750 on the helmet. Some lights are handlebar-specific only (I.e., Light &Motion Taz), but that has a great beam. I like the Niterider Lumina series for its reliability, function, and convenience.

    The following is based on my experience and does not necessarily coincide with the manufacturer's instructions: Always store your lights fully charged when not in use, and once you use them, try to discharge them between 75% and 85% (in front of a fan or other source of wind) before recharging them. Do not leave your lights plugged in (charging) for more than a day. If they have sat around for a month unused, discharge them (in front of a fan or other source of wind) and recharge before use or further storage. Freeezing temps will inconspicuously discharge the batteries. Excessive heat will shut the lights off automatically.

    The night time is the right time.
     
  9. OTHRider

    OTHRider Well-Known Member

    Name:
    Duke
    Current Bike:
    '14 Giant TCX SLR2 Cross Bike
    +1 I love my NR 750

    That said I still loan out my Mi-Newts, and my hot-rodded Blackburn - both are 8+ years old and still kicking. My Chinese cheapies work too - I got one of the replacements after the fire fiasco.
     
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  10. evdog

    evdog Well-Known Member

    Location:
    San diego
    Name:
    Evan S
    I've used the Amazon chinese knockoffs for a few years. I've had a few issues with them, but no more than I've had with more expensive lights in the past.

    For $15-20 shipped it is hard to go wrong and there is no pain if they stop working or are lost. I typically ride with a handlebar and a helmet light, and for remote / solo rides I normally have a camping headlamp as backup, so I have multiple redundancy in case something goes wrong. Most of the time it is user error, forgetting to charge a battery before I go out.

    If you are antsy about the quality of knockoffs, there are plenty of lights in the $50-80 range that are good as well. There is no need to spend $200+ on lights these days. And really, you only need 500-750 lumens for most riding especially if you run 2 lights. The 1500-2000 lumen lights lots of people seem to run are obnoxious and completely unnecessary.
     
  11. riiz

    riiz Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Redlands, CA
    Name:
    Eric
    Current Bike:
    Santa Cruz Heckler/Killmaleon
    My advice for night riding, buy 2 lights, one for the bar and one for the helmet. It sucks not being able to see around a corner because the bike isnt pointed that way.

    And the Chinese imports arent bad at all, just take the lumen rating and half it. They work well for the money. I've got a lamp that is still running strong after 5 years, I've purchased battery packs once the originals wore out and it is still going.
     
  12. Danmtchl

    Danmtchl MTB Addict

    Location:
    Bakersfield
    Name:
    Dan
    Current Bike:
    2015 Devinci Troy Carbon 27.5
    I have a NR 750 for the helmet and a Pro 1200 on the bars. Plenty of light where I ride which is pitch black.
     
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  13. DangerDirtyD

    DangerDirtyD MTB Addict

    Location:
    La Verne, CA
    Name:
    Dennis (AKA Dio)
    Current Bike:
    2013 Trek Slash 9 (26er)
    I run NiteRider Lumina lights ranging from 800 to 950 lumens. Two on the handlebar and one on the helmet, with two more in the pack on the really long (or freezing) rides, equates to 2,550 lumens at full power in a given moment. If I wanna go fast at night, as in it doesn't matter what time of day I ride, I need >2,000 lumens.
     
  14. siata94

    siata94 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    lake forest
    Name:
    siata
    Current Bike:
    lazy goat
    I posted this on a similar thread from last year:

    http://www.imtbtrails.com/forum/threads/mtb-lights-how-many-lumens-really.5454/#post-71624

    I have/use custom built flashlights modded to produce max output using high drain batteries.
    They all use a single 18650 cell. No external battery packs, no wiring.

    Helmet light is a triple XP-L max output 4000 lumens (actual measured, not estimated).
    Bar light is a quad XP-L max output 3000 lumens.
    I also have single XP-L lights making 1600 lumens that are my backup and loaner lights.

    Obviously I don't run them at high at all times. Usually mid modes on the climbs to conserve battery. Only
    on high for the descend. I've done several night rides w/ the Irvine Conservancy without needing
    to change batteries altho I carry spares.

    This is the single XP-L light:
    http://www.banggood.com/Astrolux-S1-XPL-1600LM-7-4modes-LED-Flashlight-18650-18350-p-1012721.html

    It's essentially a "modded" light from the factory as the specs were created by flashlight modders and took it out to bid. The only reservation I have with it is that it's not modded further to handle vibration on a bike so it may not last on the bar. But would work great on the helmet, I use 2 16" velcro strips. The mods consists of JB weld or something similar to the circuit board, upgrading the springs.

    I use this Fenix bar mount:
    http://www.banggood.com/Fenix-ALB-1...-AF02-Upgrade-Type-p-922668.html?rmmds=search

    Let me know if you want to give them a try.

    Further, I've ordered a few modded lights similar to mine for others; the triple was $75 and the single was $50.
     
  15. Derkderkall

    Derkderkall Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Covina
    Name:
    Derek Allison
    Current Bike:
    2012 Rockhopper 29
    Thanks! I'll check out some of these suggestions and see if I can find a good deal!
     
    Danmtchl, Mikie and Faust29 like this.
  16. mtnbikej

    mtnbikej J-Zilla

    Location:
    Orange
    Name:
    J
    Current Bike:
    SC Chameleon SS
    When we talk about lights.....we all talk about price and Lumens.

    Once thing you need to really take a look at is the lumens/burn times.

    There are a lot of self contained lights that burn high lumens.....until you look at the burn time. :55-1:30 if you run it on high. Not enough time to get in a decent ride.

    A lot of the light companies won't tell you how much power you are getting out of each setting as well. They may say it is a 1500 lumen light, has 3 setting(high, med., low)...but until you buy it, you don't know how many lumens you are getting at (med, low)

    Personally, I prefer a light that has a high burn time, even if it is a little lower in power.

    I have been a Niterider fan/user since the early '00's. My 2004 Blowtorch HID still works, however the battery is finally starting to not hold a charge. My orignial MiNewt and TriNewt still get used regularly. With that said, I picked up a free Magicshine 2 years ago as a demo, and it has held up better than I would have thought. Bright light, long burn time, separate battery.

    If you gotta go with 2 lights....bar & helmet, don't go too bright. Especially when it comes to the helmet light. If you ride with others and run a bright helmet light, you will get dusted/white out.

    Also, overly bright lights tend to make the trails seem smoother than they are.....as they tend to just wash out the contours of the trail.

    I can't run a helmet light anymore. I find that I get a sense of vertigo watching the light bounce around.
     
  17. evdog

    evdog Well-Known Member

    Location:
    San diego
    Name:
    Evan S
    That's not so bad. I was referring to the geniuses running 1500-2000 on the bar and the same on the helmet. There comes a point where the extra light doesn't help you ride better or faster. And like Faust mentioned, they probably aren't going to last that long on the searchlight setting.
     
  18. SnakeCharmer

    SnakeCharmer MTB Addict

    Location:
    Crescenta Valley
    Name:
    Mike, aka "Snake"
    Current Bike:
    Salsa/Trek/Kona
    Another Niterider fan here. Their products keep shrinking in size which is great. I have two, a 500 and a 600, both internal battery models which is all I will use. That's plenty of brightness. You can find them on sale often, too. Great value and as others have already stated, they last forever.

    One light for your helmet and one for your bar. And, with two lights, you never need to run them on high so they last all ride long.
     
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  19. da big hills

    da big hills Well-Known Member

    Location:
    pearl harbor
    Name:
    cagey
    Current Bike:
    enduro 29
    that totally sucks. Mountain bike on single trac in the dark "We own the night"
     
  20. bvader

    bvader Well-Known Member

    Location:
    HB
    Name:
    Stephen
    MTBR Light Shootout used to be a good sources, the used to have a really cool Price per Lumen Graph. Strangely they no longer do it, you have to do the math yourself.

    I am partial to Dinotte, solid $$$/Lumen (a little more than cheapie) but good light, solid burn times, Excellent construction, high quality parts / batteries and chargers.
     
    Old&InTheWay, MattB, mtnbikej and 3 others like this.
  21. Mikie

    Mikie Admin/MTB Addict

    Location:
    Lebec, California
    Name:
    Mikie Watson
    Current Bike:
    Yeti ASR5c, SC Hightower
    As always, great info!
    Moved to the Lights Forum to make it easy to find later.

    :)Mikie
     
  22. ricke24

    ricke24 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    La Habra
    Name:
    RickE
    Current Bike:
    2016 Santa Cruz 5010C
    I have Nite RiderLumina 750 with NiteRider Solas 100 tailight
     
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  23. singlespeedrider

    singlespeedrider Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Irvine
    Name:
    Mark
    Current Bike:
    On One Lurcher Single
    I have the 1200 and just got the 1600 and the 1600 is way better. I do not notice it being much brighter but the dual band mount makes it so much more stable. No bouncing around with this light when heading down a trail.
     
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  24. Faust29

    Faust29 MTB Addict

    Location:
    Rancho Santa Margarita
    Name:
    Steve
    Current Bike:
    Chameleon & Highball C
    I just picked up the 1600 as well. Seems solid, and it went 6 hours on high when I tested it in the kitchen.

    I did put a little tape on the bars where I mounted it, and it worked well on the one ride I have so far. No slipping and it seems bright enough.
     
    Old&InTheWay, Sidewalk, kioti and 2 others like this.
  25. da big hills

    da big hills Well-Known Member

    Location:
    pearl harbor
    Name:
    cagey
    Current Bike:
    enduro 29
    I use a wrap of fiberglass tape on my bar mounting position, it helps stop the slippage
    Happy night trails
     
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  26. Runs with Scissors

    Runs with Scissors MTB Addict

    Location:
    West Anaheim
    Name:
    Mark Whitaker
    Current Bike:
    2015 Giant XTC Advanced 1 29er
    What I have found to work better than anything to keep the light slippage to a minimum, is to use the cut end of bar tape under the clampage of the light.
     
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  27. mtnbikej

    mtnbikej J-Zilla

    Location:
    Orange
    Name:
    J
    Current Bike:
    SC Chameleon SS

    That would be great if I was a roadie and had bar tape laying around.



    Oh, wait....we do have 2 drop bar bikes.....plus I actually do have bar tape in the parts bin....it is great for wrapping chainstays.
     
  28. Sidewalk

    Sidewalk Well-Known Member

    Location:
    HorsetownUSA
    Name:
    Josh
    Current Bike:
    N+1
    My work uses this soft tape type stuff, used for covering up parts to be sand blasted to protect the areas not to be blasted. They go it by the acreage...I use a small strip of it and the cheapo lights stay really still. But I think I like the bar tape idea.
     
    Cyclotourist likes this.
  29. Runs with Scissors

    Runs with Scissors MTB Addict

    Location:
    West Anaheim
    Name:
    Mark Whitaker
    Current Bike:
    2015 Giant XTC Advanced 1 29er
    So, here's my review of the NiteRider Solas 150:

    upload_2018-6-13_20-32-14.png

    The light itself is amazing. It will blind the dead...if someone runs over you while you're running this light, then they are clueless.

    It's bright. It lasts. I had run it on several commutes where I had forgotten to charge it the night before, and it seems to last forever. I never used the highest power-drain setting for any length of time, so I don't know the max-output vs duration formula. This light simply works...on bike paths and riverbeds. It charges via mini-USB either on your confuser or the wall socket.

    I had it on my XTC when I rode Black Star to the Golf Ball to Sierra Peak and down the singletracks last weekend. Somewhere in there the light parted ways with the mounting bracket. For a fairly expensive light, this is the weak point. I like the rubber strap mounting system - it will fit any seatpost/seat tube out there, and the rubber strap will not disengage. However, the light itself does not seem all that secure. As noted above, it detached and went walkies.

    I would recommend this light for road riding, but not for any mountain biking (even on mtb rides we occasionally want rear lights for roadie segments) where you will be getting hits to the rear wheel. It just doesn't seem to be solid enough.

    For what I paid, it shouldn't have this issue.

    I replaced it with a Bontrager light that has a much better mounting system, on which I will report later.
     
    DangerDirtyD likes this.
  30. Grego

    Grego MTB Addict

    Location:
    Fullerton
    Name:
    joe
    Current Bike:
    WFO9
    Runs with Scissors likes this.
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