CityCyclingEdinburgh Forum » Infrastructure

Mega bright front lights - (again)

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  1. Bigjack
    Member

    I know these aren't going to go away but maybe the manufacturers could provide a dipped beam function so that oncoming cyclists/pedestrians aren't temporarily blinded.
    The worst routes around Edinburgh are the unlit canal path or Innocent Railway Path where understandably good lights are needed to see your way but a bit of common courtesy towards fellow cyclists and other path users would be very welcome.
    (It's similar to driving a car with lights on full beam and never dipping the headlights)

    Posted 1 year ago #
  2. uphill
    Member

    I couldn't agree more! As the owner of a pretty bright light, it does it's jobs of making sure vehicle drivers can never say "Sorry I didn't see you" and lighting the unlit path ahead. I turn it off on the Edinburgh bike path as it is lit to avoid dazzling people coming the other way. As temporary measure if it is on for pedestrians at red lights and people on dark roads/paths I put a finger over it which kills the main beam but still lets me be seen. Tricky to get a handy system for a removable light, but one I feel the manufacturers of these dear lights need to address.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  3. CJC
    Member

    Even worse is super bright lights that are flashing!

    I recently bought a "Lezyne Macro Drive 600XL" which has a super-bright-blind-all-the-people mode and a much lower im-here-but-im-not-blinding-you mode. These can be toggled by touching a button on the light.

    I use this on bike paths and the canal. Full mode when I need to see what's going on, dimmed when someone approaches.

    I've also got a cheap super bright light on my helmet, but I have the beam focussed so it hits the ground a few feet in front of me and not in the eyes of oncoming riders.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  4. Kim
    Member

    Part of the problem is that most of the bright lights on the market in the UK are actually designed for mountain biking, where having a widespread of light is an advantage (when riding single track in the dark, being able to see a low hanging branch is definitely an advantage).

    The only bicycle lights which are explicitly designed road use are dynamo and e-bike lights from German manufactures. This is because the StVZO (Straßenverkehrs-Zulassungs-Ordnung if you insist) require all bicycles, used on road, weighing more than 12 kg to be fitted with dynamo powered (although this might have been changed recently) front and rear lights. The front light is also required to internal reflectors which aim the light down along the road (in the same way the motor vehicle lights on dipped do).

    The exception to this is the Supernova Airstream 2, which is a battery light for non e-bikes which complies with StVZO regs.

    If however, you have an e-bike and want the the ultimate cycle light which is very bright but StVZO compliant you are looking for the Supernova M99 Pro, this light has: an automatic daytime running light, “high beam" and "dipped beam" modes controlled by a thumb switch on your handlebars, and a "smart ECO-Mode" which changes beam intensity depending on your speed. In full high beam mode, it can illuminate the road up to 380m ahead of you...

    Posted 1 year ago #
  5. kaputnik
    Moderator

    Don't get me started on bright, helmet-mounted lights being shone directly into your eyes by oncoming cyclists.

    Two thumbs down to the lady I often see along Riverside Crescent who has two such military specification flashlights attached to her head.

    These don't belong anywhere but serious night-time off-roading.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  6. gembo
    Member

    Pretty easy to tilt your light down to the left side of your wheel. Not sure why people don't. Manufacturers surely can produce an attachment fixing light to bike where the default is tilted down and left or I guess down and right for countries where they drive on the right.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  7. Blueth
    Member

    I got one of the classic cheap Chinese lights for the mountainbike years ago. For road use I got a ribbed, as opposed to plain, lens that produces a letterbox shaped beam on the ground from somewhere in Britain. I'm afraid I can't remember where, should anyone consider the modification.

    Still as bright of course but allows useful lowering of the beam.

    Actually I have now Googled it and they are still available for £3.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  8. bax
    Member

    edelux II ~ toplight line plus = the combo of champions

    macro drive 800xl optional extra for the fast descents

    Posted 1 year ago #
  9. piosad
    Member

    PSA: if you are cycling along the canal and your light is blinding me on the Harrison Road bridge, your beam is pointing too <rule 2> high.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  10. Nelly
    Member

    "I got one of the classic cheap Chinese lights for the mountainbike years ago. For road use I got a ribbed, as opposed to plain, lens that produces a letterbox shaped beam on the ground from somewhere in Britain. I'm afraid I can't remember where, should anyone consider the modification.

    Still as bright of course but allows useful lowering of the beam.

    Actually I have now Googled it and they are still available for £3."

    Ditto - I have bought a diffuser for every light I have bought and they work really well.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  11. Blueth
    Member

    I can second the efficacy of the ribbed diffuser.

    On lights - tonight seemed to be the night for eejits abroad. First the chap with red lights only to front and rear then the one with both red and white to the front but white only to the rear. How to confuse the motorist.

    Even if ignorant of the law one might have thought that every other vehicle having white to the front and red to the rear might be a bit of a clue.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  12. the canuck
    Member

    i'm just in here to sing with the choir. i hate those damned lights.
    if you want to see where you're going, point it down.
    if you want to be seen, get a reasonable light and wear lots of reflective gear.

    also, same rules for cycling as for driving--at nighttime, slow down.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  13. kaputnik
    Moderator

    Ah, it's time for me to have my annual, seasonal whinge about bike lights.

    *cracks knuckles, large intake of breath*.

    Helmet mounted light sabres or hillwalking head torches? Get in the sea.

    Strobing lights? In the canal.

    Lights pointing any direction apart from down? Water of Leith for you.

    That is all.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  14. piosad
    Member

    Today I was so blinded by the light from the oncoming cyclist I missed my turn off the towpath and had to retrace my steps, which is not in any way trivial with a tagalong.

    Posted 1 month ago #
  15. wingpig
    Member

    Someone heading north on MMW whilst I was heading south was so bright they genuinely appeared to be a very quiet and slow motorcycle until I passed them.

    Posted 1 month ago #
  16. nedd1e_h
    Member

    I think I'm gonna start shouting "HIGHWAY CODE ONE ONE FOUR" at excessively bright retina searers:

    Rule 114
    You MUST NOT

    use any lights in a way which would dazzle or cause discomfort to other road users, including pedestrians, cyclists and horse riders

    Posted 1 week ago #
  17. SRD
    Moderator

    @wingpig "Someone heading north on MMW whilst I was heading south was so bright they genuinely appeared to be a very quiet and slow motorcycle until I passed them."

    I suspect I saw this same person the other night. Was sure it was a moped or something until we got close. bizarre.

    Posted 1 week ago #
  18. Ed1
    Member

    Its paths that tend to notice these bright lights, would the highway code be applicable to paths?

    Posted 1 week ago #
  19. wingpig
    Member

    The Highway Code Applies. If they had sufficient resources the polices could fine cyclepath ninjas and eye-searers alike. On a motor-vehicle-compatible roadway offensive bicycle lights are usually ameliorated by greater lateral separation, plus there are usually lots of other bright point sources nearby, including the offside lights of vehicles with stupid sparkly LEDs. On a bike path there's often just the oncoming cyclist, a couple of lonely streetlights and a canopy of dark trees.

    Posted 1 week ago #
  20. bax
    Member

    what about ninja squirrels?

    they need to up their game

    too slow at this time of year

    Posted 1 week ago #
  21. Iain McR
    Member

    I use my photon-cannon to ward off the ninja squirrels. No attacks in 2018 as yet - must be working.

    That said, since the thread about possible issues caused by strobing lights, I do turn off the front flasher and set the cannons to lowest setting when I join the Innocent.

    I can not see how anything meaningful can be done to stop this or even stop it getting worse. Brighter lights are getting cheaper.

    Posted 1 week ago #
  22. unhurt
    Member

    Is it actually called a photon cannon? Almost as macho as @Iwrats "exposure joystick" if so.

    In other news I wonder if there's money in making up increasingly epic/allusive names for lights?

    Posted 1 week ago #
  23. Iain McR
    Member

    real names of my lights.

    Exposure Joystick
    Exposure Maxx-D

    photon cannon sounds great though - possible from Star Wars

    Posted 1 week ago #
  24. I were right about that saddle
    Member

    Almost as macho as @Iwrats "exposure joystick" if so.

    I'd have said that was quite a camp name. That's why I bought it anyway. Was planning to fit it on a Rose Beefcake.

    Posted 1 week ago #
  25. unhurt
    Member

    Depends how you expose it. (Is there some sort of film photography joke I'm failing to make here? Or at least a "shake it like a polaroid picture" reference?)

    ...I sort of hate that I went to check if that bike had mechanical disc brakes (it doesn't).

    @Iain McR Exposure Maxx-D Well. That's unsubtle!

    Posted 1 week ago #
  26. bax
    Member

    lou reed was keen on max exposure

    I wish that I was born a thousand years ago
    I wish that I'd sailed the darkened seas
    On a great big clipper ship
    Going from this land here to that
    In a sailor's suit and cap

    Posted 1 week ago #
  27. toomanybikes
    Member

    The Innocent is a lot better for scorched retinas since they put the lights in. More lighting needed on other paths maybe..

    Posted 1 week ago #
  28. amir
    Member

    A tip that I use - learnt on the roads. Firstly don't stare at the light and secondly wear a hat with a peak.

    Posted 1 week ago #
  29. Iain McR
    Member

    @ Amir - hat with a peak.

    yes, i concur - its very useful.

    Posted 1 week ago #
  30. rider73
    Member

    @amir - like a cowboy hat! i like it!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Posted 1 week ago #

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