Reelights

Questions about purchasing bicycles and parts

Reelights

Postby europa » Thu Mar 22, 2007 12:44 pm

What do you think of these things?
Reelight

I like:
- they require no batteries
- no friction like the old dynamos
- they're always on the bike so I can't forget to pack the rotten things
- the blonde ... err, no that wasn't it ... umm ...

I don't like:
- the 'safety is cool' tone of the website
- they don't mention brightness at all so I'm betting they are 'to be seen' only and don't help you see
- the low positioning which might make then too low to be useful as safety aids

You can buy them off flebay for $42 delivered at the moment.

I'm planning to go riding while my son's at soccer training. That's worked nicely up to now but with dusk encroaching into that time and daylight saving ending soon (boooo!), I need to think lighting. I've got battery lights front and rear the front is just a 5 led light and I'll be riding on unlit bike tracks. I'd also like to do Audax at some point. My thinking is that these reelights would be a useful companion to a 'melt the concrete' headlight.

Any thoughts?

Richard
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by BNA » Thu Mar 22, 2007 1:01 pm

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Postby Mulger bill » Thu Mar 22, 2007 1:01 pm

Blinkies should be as high as possible IMO

The concept is great, a zero loss dynamo. Still not sure 'bout the mounting, how would they stand up to vibration?
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Postby tuco » Thu Mar 22, 2007 1:57 pm

A little low I thought.

It does mention brightness, ". . . very strong light." :wink:

Check out the photo of the dorkmeister on the technology page.

They could have spent a few dollars on an interpreter spell checking their site.

I'd be interested to know how big the magnets are.

I think I'll stick to my regular lights with rechargeable AAAs and a few spare fully charged AAAs as a backup.
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Postby pugsly » Thu Mar 22, 2007 2:10 pm

I've only briefly looked at the site, but they also only look like they work when the wheels are spinning - I suspect the faster you go, the brighter/faster the flash - which is fine when you're moving - means you're invisible if you stop though.

Maybe as another set of lights on the bike, but certainly not as the only set.
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Postby europa » Thu Mar 22, 2007 2:54 pm

No, there's some sort of storage system so they keep blinking when you stop for traffic lights. The brightness thing has probably been sorted too. But yeah, you wouldn't want them as your only light. I was thinking 'blinkies plus headlight). They'd be good on days or evenings when it unexpectedly gets a bit dark, because they're always on the bike (yes, I've forgotten my current lights once already this year)

Richard
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Postby tinstaafl » Thu Mar 22, 2007 4:38 pm

I didn't have a real good look at the site because it was clunky and slow but the concept of a frictionless dynamo fascinates me.
I am assuming that this would be some form of 'magnetic induction' like the little magnet on the bike computer but the magnet would have to be strong enough to induce a current.

To quote a famous TV bloke,
In this house we obey the laws of Thermodynamics!

If you are generating electricity at the wheel you must feel it at the pedal.

I think that I'll stick with rechargables.

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Postby gururug » Thu Mar 22, 2007 6:12 pm

Excellent idea for power generation however I think they might blink possibly too fast or too slow at high or low speeds!
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Postby LuckyPierre » Thu Mar 22, 2007 6:48 pm

There was review in one of the Australian bike mags reasonably recently. I haven't found it yet, but I'll pass on the reviewer's thoughts when I find it.
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Postby MountGower » Thu Mar 22, 2007 8:13 pm

Richard
Last edited by MountGower on Mon Mar 23, 2009 1:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby europa » Thu Mar 22, 2007 8:41 pm

It's that ebay posting that put me onto these. Could you have a yarn with him about how effective they are? Are they only warning lights (which is what you'd expect). How do they handle going faster, slower and stopped with regards to blinking rate?

These are questions that have been raised in this thread and I'm sure I'm not the only one who'd like the answers.

I'm in Adelaide and you're in Brisbane so ringing him myself may not be a good idea (I tend to chat).

Thanks for that.

Richard
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Postby Mulger bill » Thu Mar 22, 2007 8:42 pm

tinstaafl wrote:If you are generating electricity at the wheel you must feel it at the pedal.

Electromagnetic induction requires work be performed ie dynamo drag, These lights have effectively no moving parts, so going on the very low voltages drawn by LEDS, I don't think they wolud drag any more than your 'puters sensor. The frictional losses in a bottle or hub dynamo is what hurts your legs.

Shaun hoping desperately someone who knows what they are talking about comes in
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Postby europa » Thu Mar 22, 2007 8:49 pm

hoping desperately someone who knows what they are talking about comes in

The wee bit of text in Shaun's post that no-one could read. I had to copy and enlarge so I could read it, so I thought I'd share it :D

Richard

tip to all users - preview your posts before submitting 8)
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Postby tuco » Thu Mar 22, 2007 8:56 pm

Mulger bill wrote:
tinstaafl wrote:If you are generating electricity at the wheel you must feel it at the pedal.

Electromagnetic induction requires work be performed ie dynamo drag, These lights have effectively no moving parts, so going on the very low voltages drawn by LEDS, I don't think they wolud drag any more than your 'puters sensor. The frictional losses in a bottle or hub dynamo is what hurts your legs.

Shaun hoping desperately someone who knows what they are talking about comes in


Agreed, you wouldn't notice the induction in the pedals. Magnetic forces are small and not much power is needed for LEDs. They're low voltage devices.

The added weight on the bike and the fact they don't look aerodynamic would cause more drag.
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Postby europa » Thu Mar 22, 2007 9:03 pm

tuco wrote:The added weight on the bike and the fact they don't look aerodynamic would cause more drag.


I'd put that into the same box as any set of lights - the difference being that these are on the bike all the time. Wonder if they have some sort of quick release system. Wonder how heavy the magnets are.

Richard
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Postby Mulger bill » Thu Mar 22, 2007 9:13 pm

europa wrote:hoping desperately someone who knows what they are talking about comes in

The wee bit of text in Shaun's post that no-one could read. I had to copy and enlarge so I could read it, so I thought I'd share it :D

Richard

tip to all users - preview your posts before submitting 8)


Gotcha :P Quoting would be easier :wink:

Just my humble way of saying I know a little bit but wish I knew more :oops:

Shaun
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Postby MountGower » Thu Mar 22, 2007 9:34 pm

I am
Last edited by MountGower on Mon Mar 23, 2009 1:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Reelight info

Postby brendanjlee » Fri Mar 23, 2007 8:44 am

Hi. I am the one who sells these on Ebay. I don't know if I am breaking the rules but this is not intended as a plug but more as answering some of the questions that Mount Gower has pointed out to me.
The lights that I am selling do not operate while the bike is not moving. There is an newer version with a capacitor inside available however it has not arrived in Australia yet. (Once it does I will be selling them too.) The lights flash as often as the magnets go past meaning that if you are doing more than about 30 k's an hour the flash turns into more of a pulse. The flash is very bright, even at low speeds. It would be comparable to many of the battery flashers available on the market.
The whole kit weighs about 320 grams including magnets and lights front and rear.
If there are any other questions that you have, I would be more than happy to answer them for you.
Mount Gower has also pointed out that if you want to use them on a bike with flat spokes, you can get so called 'flat spoke magnets' on ebay for a bit of a premium. I have asked the manufacturer if they have any plans to release a flat spoke version but I have not heard anything back yet.
Thanks,
Brendan
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Postby europa » Fri Mar 23, 2007 8:53 am

No rule breaking Brendan. You've come on to answer specific questions about your product - that's different to sneaking on then trying to sell something. Feel free to join in the rest of the bun fight too :D

Now, back to these lights. Can they be mounted elsewhere? For instance, my bike had mounting points on the fork for a front carrier - could they be mounted there. How about on the rear rack supports. Just trying to get them closer to a driver's line of vision (yes, I know, it shouldn't be needed but ...)

Any thoughts on how much dearer the newer version will be? And when they'll be available?

Richard

and thanks to Mountgower for organising this :wink:
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Postby brendanjlee » Fri Mar 23, 2007 9:01 am

Hi Richard.
Unfortunately the lights are designed as a fully integrated package so they will only mount at the wheel hub. A dedicated tinkerer could probably re-wire them to fit where they wanted, but that would be very difficult. I think you'll find that the lights are quite visible where they are. I have them pointed slightly upwards so they are shining into a drivers face when he is about 10 meters behind me :-)

No idea on pricing of the new version, but I can't see it being too much dearer. Maybe an extra $5 or $8... Also, I don't know if they will be a constant on or a flashing light. I'll have to wait until I can get some in my hot little hands :-)

Yeah MG has been great. he started recently at my work and we're the only 2 cyclists in an office of 30. It's great not to be all by myself any more!

Cheers,
Brendan
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Postby Mulger bill » Fri Mar 23, 2007 9:25 am

europa wrote:Now, back to these lights. Can they be mounted elsewhere? For instance, my bike had mounting points on the fork for a front carrier - could they be mounted there. How about on the rear rack supports. Just trying to get them closer to a driver's line of vision (yes, I know, it shouldn't be needed but ...)


This looks like a job for BicycleWA :lol:
I've had a look around the site and found this,
Image
It's an extender bracket for disc brake applications, looks to me like a competent fiddler could work something similar up, just as long as the magnet mountings can be made to line up.

Thinkin' aloud

Shaun
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Postby heavymetal » Fri Mar 23, 2007 11:15 am

Mulger bill wrote:This looks like a job for BicycleWA :lol:


I'm still trying to invent something to stop the wind blowing my candles out when I'm riding. I just about give up and will have to get some lights. :shock:

I wonder how these will mount to the wheel with the front rack hardware and extra lugs on the tourer fork?


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Postby Mulger bill » Fri Mar 23, 2007 11:29 am

Went all nerdy and downloaded more pics, hope the resize worked.
Image
Image
Image

Making the magnets fit out near the rim would be the only question IMHO.
Cobbling up brackets for rackmount holes using the factory units as a template should be a doddle.
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Postby heavymetal » Fri Mar 23, 2007 12:13 pm

With panniers and a BOB trailer on there is no room for these. They look like they should fit without any panniers as they will clear the racks.

Most bikes should be OK, it's just us tourers are a difficult bunch. :shock:

You could mount them higher up with one of those brackets that come off of the brake mounting points. There is a bracket designed for racks that allows racks to mount to the brake pivot points. Using one of these, the light could probably mount OK, but you wouldn't have the magnet going past it as much unless you were riding faster :D
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reelight

Postby brendanjlee » Fri Mar 23, 2007 3:13 pm

It is possible to remove the mounting bracket (the two screws in the back of the module that you can see in the picture) so that you just have the light module. This could then be attached to an appropriate bracket of your own design/manufacture.
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regarding extra equipment

Postby brendanjlee » Fri Mar 23, 2007 3:15 pm

Pannier bags and trailers shouldn't get in the way too much. It simply slips on the inside of the nut that holds the wheel on.
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