What's the go with lights?

Equipment and On Road Behaviour, Laws and Rules. Cycling Promotion and Advocacy

Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby RonK » Fri Aug 17, 2012 5:06 pm

gorilla monsoon wrote:And when you nosedive into the shrubbery one night and rip yourself open because your lights were inadequate come and ask me where I got my Ay-Ups from.

I have intermediate beam Ayups - and they are easily aimed so I can see very clearly where I'm going, without dazzling others. I wouldn't want to risk another cyclist colliding with me while he's averting his gaze from my lights.
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by BNA » Fri Aug 17, 2012 7:34 pm

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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby Mulger bill » Fri Aug 17, 2012 7:34 pm

RonK wrote:
gorilla monsoon wrote:And when you nosedive into the shrubbery one night and rip yourself open because your lights were inadequate come and ask me where I got my Ay-Ups from.

I have intermediate beam Ayups - and they are easily aimed so I can see very clearly where I'm going, without dazzling others. I wouldn't want to risk another cyclist colliding with me while he's averting his gaze from my lights.


Which is pretty much what Gumby said. Seems you agree with him. I know I do...
...whatever the road rules, self-preservation is the absolute priority for a cyclist when mixing it with motorised traffic.
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby BigPete » Sat Aug 18, 2012 5:02 pm

Some have suggested that mounting lights lower will reduce the dazzle to oncoming vehicles. In fact the opposite is the case. The higher the light the more the beam can be directed down rather than out in a more horizontal pattern when mounted low.
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby il padrone » Sat Aug 18, 2012 5:47 pm

BigPete wrote: The higher the light the more the beam can be directed down rather than out in a more horizontal pattern when mounted low.

Correct. However the highest mount, the helmet-mount, is exceptionally prone to erratic aiming of the lights. Just have to lift your head up a little and you're dazzling people.

I've always found a fork crown mount to give the best balance of range, road illumination, and showing up of the surface irregularities. The light should be able to be correctly aimed and fixed in its angle of elevation.
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby Alien27 » Sat Aug 18, 2012 6:13 pm

Nobody wrote:
Alien27 wrote:It's a case of the law needing to catch up with the technology as bike lights now seem to be as bright as car lights. They need to regulate the beam spread of bike lights in the same way as car and motorbikes.
Agree, but since bike lights are a bolt-on and not a factory supplied item permanently connected to the bike it won't be that simple. MTB lights with a wider spread will still be available and many will still choose these. Policing on off-road bike tracks is almost non-existent at night, so unlikely to change cyclists' behaviour.


It would have to be a point of sale thing. All lights sold would have to comply with an Aust Standard and have a little sticker like helmets.

There would then be guideline for aiming them much the same as with cars and motorbikes.

I'm from a motorbiking background and while the lights are fixed like you say they still need to be adjusted sometimes with suspension setup changes or long trips with lots of luggage and a pillion on the rear.

It would be cheap to include a light aiming lens and actually concentrate more light where it is needed.

It's something the bike community should get on the front foot with and lobby for. We don't need another issue used against us. Quite a good PR opportunity for us really.
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby bardygrub » Sat Aug 18, 2012 6:17 pm

Has anyone else heard the rumer that you need to have a rear light for racing in Vic meets?
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby greyhoundtom » Sat Aug 18, 2012 7:43 pm

bardygrub wrote:Has anyone else heard the rumer that you need to have a rear light for racing in Vic meets?

From the Southern Masters web site
Rear red lights must be fitted to your bike for ALL SVCC road races, these are mandatory.

Spares, carry your spare tubes etc, you must be self sufficient on the road.

Do not cross double white lines at any stage, especially in an attempt to gain an advantage. The mandatory state wide penalty for crossing double white lines is $250.00 and 1 month suspension

ALL our road races have the 250m marker in place for the final sprint, this must be obeyed at all times.
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby il padrone » Sat Aug 18, 2012 8:40 pm

Didn't know that night racing was the next big thing :? :lol:
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby greyhoundtom » Sat Aug 18, 2012 9:23 pm

All bikes in road racing must be road legal. :roll: ............but then they forgot to mention the must have.......... BELL :lol:
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby il padrone » Sat Aug 18, 2012 9:31 pm

But my point exactly. It is normally legal to ride in daylight hours without any lights at all (course you might need to stop racing in low visibility periods - heavy rain, fog, dark clouds :P )

It'd be quite legal and safe to ride with your lights in the jersey pocket and fit them when it became darker - but your race rules are over and above this :|



And the bell...... yes where's that rule :? :?: :mrgreen:
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby Nobody » Sat Aug 18, 2012 9:49 pm

Alien27 wrote:It would have to be a point of sale thing. All lights sold would have to comply with an Aust Standard and have a little sticker like helmets.
Good idea. I think they already have the beam cutoff specification for bicycles in Germany already.
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby Nobody » Sat Aug 18, 2012 9:55 pm

il padrone wrote:But my point exactly. It is normally legal to ride in daylight hours without any lights at all (course you might need to stop racing in low visibility periods - heavy rain, fog, dark clouds :P )

It'd be quite legal and safe to ride with your lights in the jersey pocket and fit them when it became darker - but your race rules are over and above this :|
These days unless I'm just traveling to the nearest off-road point, I don't leave the house without front and rear flashing lights in the day time. I just don't have enough faith in people seeing me without them.
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby il padrone » Sat Aug 18, 2012 11:12 pm

'Choice' and 'rules' are two very different things :idea:

And always should be thus.
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby ZepinAtor » Sun Aug 19, 2012 12:24 am

It seems Exposure lights from the UK have this well covered with a beam dip button for on-coming traffic/pedestrians.

After witnessing many joggers & late night walkers covering their eyes with their hands as I approach, it seemed blatantly obvious my lights were way too bright.

I now always dip my lights to the lowest setting in advance as soon as I see an on-coming object. If caught by surprise by a "ghost walker" I simply cover my light with my hand. Looks cool as my hand illuminates red with the beam penetrating the skin & instantly shuts out the glaring light as I pass.
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby Mulger bill » Sun Aug 19, 2012 11:52 am

ZepinAtor wrote:It seems Exposure lights from the UK have this well covered with a beam dip button for on-coming traffic/pedestrians.

After witnessing many joggers & late night walkers covering their eyes with their hands as I approach, it seemed blatantly obvious my lights were way too bright.

I now always dip my lights to the lowest setting in advance as soon as I see an on-coming object. If caught by surprise by a "ghost walker" I simply cover my light with my hand. Looks cool as my hand illuminates red with the beam penetrating the skin & instantly shuts out the glaring light as I pass.



So if I read you aright Zep, you are suggesting bright lights used with consideration for others?

Sounds like a plan to me...

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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby ZepinAtor » Sun Aug 19, 2012 1:53 pm

Mulger bill wrote:
So if I read you aright Zep, you are suggesting bright lights used with consideration for others?

Sounds like a plan to me...

Shaun


Strange as it may seem..................Yes :idea:

Although unfortunately on sharp bends & over the crests of some hills I have still managed to blind on-coming traffic.

Maybe in the not too distant future we could have "auto dipping" GPS enabled detection systems in place ?
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby wombatK » Sun Aug 19, 2012 3:29 pm

Alien27 wrote:It's a case of the law needing to catch up with the technology as bike lights now seem to be as bright as car lights. They need to regulate the beam spread of bike lights in the same way as car and motorbikes.

Nothing is as it seems. Current generation LED bicycle lights, such as the latest cree's and P7 variants,
produce vastly less light than car headlights

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See viewtopic.php?t=54740&start=28 for more details.

The regulations (ADR and underlying ECE Regs 113 and 112) are not deficient in relation to bicycle lighting. There
are proposed amendments required for them to cater for car headlamps comprised of LED modules (i.e. with
multiple emitters) in place of filament bulbs. But automotive LED modules also output way more than is
the case of current generation bicycle lights (and chew so much battery you'll never put them on a bicycle).

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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby Alien27 » Sun Aug 19, 2012 3:39 pm

Thats interesting thanks wombat. Goes to show though just how effective the regulations on car and mbike headlights are at ensuring they are not blinding. I'm no expert in manufacturing but I can't see it adding more than $5 to the cost of a bike light to have a light focusing lens.
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby wombatK » Sun Aug 19, 2012 5:24 pm

Alien27 wrote:Thats interesting thanks wombat. Goes to show though just how effective the regulations on car and mbike headlights are at ensuring they are not blinding. I'm no expert in manufacturing but I can't see it adding more than $5 to the cost of a bike light to have a light focusing lens.

It's not just a matter of putting a focusing lens on the light (actually the Ayups have a focusing lens, but its symmetrical - so you really mean an asymmetrical focusing lens).

Any asymmetrical light focusing lens is only as good as the stability of the mount. Unlike the automotive situation, bicycle handlebar mounts aren't permanent fixtures and can be easily knocked a few degrees out of position. That's enough to negate any benefit from the focusing lens. And lack of permanent mounting would also make policing/testing any regulations very problematic. It would all come back to the cyclist aiming the light appropriately, and that is no better than the current lights without a focusing lens.

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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby il padrone » Sun Aug 19, 2012 6:20 pm

wombatK wrote:Any asymmetrical light focusing lens is only as good as the stability of the mount....

....It would all come back to the cyclist aiming the light appropriately, and that is no better than the current lights without a focusing lens.

You are under-valuing the merits of an asymmetrical lens here. They do not simply cut off the beam to reduce dazzle to other drivers, they also focus the beam for greatest vision at different distances. An asymmetrical lens has a beam that is brightest just beneath the horizon and graduates to lower intensity towards the lower beam, to give greatest reach for the beam at longer distance, and to avoid washing out the road surface closer to you. This will not easily be achieved with a concentric beam.

What it looks like against a vertical wall
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to give an even road beam that looks like this
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Another beam comparison - between the Schmidt Edelux (asymmetrical beam) and the Supernova E3 (concentric beam)
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby wombatK » Sun Aug 19, 2012 8:34 pm

il padrone wrote:
wombatK wrote:Any asymmetrical light focusing lens is only as good as the stability of the mount....

....It would all come back to the cyclist aiming the light appropriately, and that is no better than the current lights without a focusing lens.

You are under-valuing the merits of an asymmetrical lens here. They do not simply cut off the beam to reduce dazzle to other drivers, they also focus the beam for greatest vision at different distances.

My point is that no matter how they cut off or focus the beam, and even if it is stronger at some lower angles as a result, that's all to no avail if the torch is pointed too high because the bracket isn't rock-solid.

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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby Alien27 » Sun Aug 19, 2012 9:42 pm

wombatK wrote:
il padrone wrote:
wombatK wrote:Any asymmetrical light focusing lens is only as good as the stability of the mount....

....It would all come back to the cyclist aiming the light appropriately, and that is no better than the current lights without a focusing lens.

You are under-valuing the merits of an asymmetrical lens here. They do not simply cut off the beam to reduce dazzle to other drivers, they also focus the beam for greatest vision at different distances.

My point is that no matter how they cut off or focus the beam, and even if it is stronger at some lower angles as a result, that's all to no avail if the torch is pointed too high because the bracket isn't rock-solid.

Cheers


It's easy to adjust on the fly, the beauty of the asymmetrical lens is that it is adjustable. You have a clear horizon and it's easy to see when it's pointing two high. Simple to point it down. With the normal lights it's either pointed two high and blinding or two low and not much use.
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby il padrone » Sun Aug 19, 2012 10:18 pm

Alien27 wrote:You have a clear horizon and it's easy to see when it's pointing two high. Simple to point it down. With the normal lights it's either pointed two high and blinding or two low and not much use.

A very good point that I had not thought of. I've been using an IQ Cyo for a number of years and the horizon is very clear - easy to judge if it's too high. In the past 18 months I've been using the concentric Supernova E3 Pro and it is a much more difficult thing to judge whether the light is too high or not.

I have been considering going back to the Cyo, or even getting an Edelux. Food for thought after I get back from the Red Centre.
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby ldrcycles » Mon Aug 20, 2012 3:03 pm

il padrone wrote:Didn't know that night racing was the next big thing :? :lol:


Absolutely! The local club up here has night time crits, great fun.
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Re: What's the go with lights?

Postby RonK » Mon Aug 20, 2012 3:45 pm

il padrone wrote:
Alien27 wrote:You have a clear horizon and it's easy to see when it's pointing two high. Simple to point it down. With the normal lights it's either pointed two high and blinding or two low and not much use.

A very good point that I had not thought of. I've been using an IQ Cyo for a number of years and the horizon is very clear - easy to judge if it's too high. In the past 18 months I've been using the concentric Supernova E3 Pro and it is a much more difficult thing to judge whether the light is too high or not.

I have been considering going back to the Cyo, or even getting an Edelux. Food for thought after I get back from the Red Centre.

Ahhhhh, that's the reason I got the the E3 Pro Terraflux.
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