Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

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Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby __PG__ » Wed May 22, 2013 3:50 pm

After a suggestion for a helmet mounted front light. Have been using an old 3 AA LED light jerry-rigged onto my helmet but I'm after something newer and brighter with more compact technology designed for a helmet mount.

Handlebar front light is a Light 'n' Motion Urban 500. This is to see where I'm going. I just want another helmet mounted light to make sure I stand out in traffic.

I suppose one option is to buy another Light'n'Motion unit.
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by BNA » Wed May 22, 2013 4:14 pm

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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby jacks1071 » Wed May 22, 2013 4:14 pm

I've never felt that helmet mounted lights were a good idea on the road - Ie. you might look at someone and blind them.

In the bush, helmet mounted absolutely the way to go in combination with a good handlebar light.
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby __PG__ » Wed May 22, 2013 4:28 pm

I disagree. Bike lights are usually at the same level as a car. Cars entering from sidestreets may not see your lights if there are parked cars in the way. But a small light on the top of your helmet is always visible.

I'm not talking about a set of head-mounted AYUPs here. I'm just after a simple helmet mounted low-power light to attract attention.
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby takai » Wed May 22, 2013 4:39 pm

I quite liked my one of these: http://www.topeak.com/products/Lights/headlux

Unfortunately it didnt survive a low hanging tree on a trail one night. I now use a pair of cheap $2 LED lights from ebay, the "frog" copy style. One on the front one on the rear.
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby trailgumby » Wed May 22, 2013 6:19 pm

I disagree also, wiht respect.

I've literally lost count of the number of times cars have jerked to a halt when I've beamed them, that were about to commence a collision course with yours truly (pull out from side street, enter roundabout from left, right turn across my bows, you know the types of interactions :x ).

Now these are now quite old units. I might have cause to revisit that with the current version when I get around to upgrading, but so far I'd say that far from being a problem, the ability to aim and get attention on me as required has been a positive selling point for me.
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby rangersac » Wed May 22, 2013 7:48 pm

trailgumby wrote:'ve literally lost count of the number of times cars have jerked to a halt when I've beamed them, that were about to commence a collision course with yours truly (pull out from side street, enter roundabout from left, right turn across my bows, you know the types of interactions :x ).


Can't agree enough with this. I used to commute with bar mounted Ay-ups, but since switching to the helmet mount I've had zero entry from side issues. It's the first piece of advice I have for anyone riding on the road in the dark.
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby Mulger bill » Wed May 22, 2013 8:21 pm

rangersac wrote:
trailgumby wrote:'ve literally lost count of the number of times cars have jerked to a halt when I've beamed them, that were about to commence a collision course with yours truly (pull out from side street, enter roundabout from left, right turn across my bows, you know the types of interactions :x ).


Can't agree enough with this. I used to commute with bar mounted Ay-ups, but since switching to the helmet mount I've had zero entry from side issues. It's the first piece of advice I have for anyone riding on the road in the dark.

Annnnd another one. The best "be seen" lights all have lid mounts. It's easy enough to turn them off when you don't need them.
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby jacks1071 » Wed May 22, 2013 10:23 pm

Interesting feedback, I'd only used my Ayup's on the helmet and I felt they were far too bright to use helmet mounted on the road.

I guess a much more dull light maybe an idea?
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby trailgumby » Wed May 22, 2013 10:42 pm

Mmmm, I think the trick actually is to aim them at a spot on the road a bit further ahead of your bar lights, and then use your eyes to scan instead of moving our head. It takes practice but does become habit. That way you avoid dazzling other road users unnecessarily.

I find though, when my peripheral vision detects something approaching swiftly from the side that is a potential collision threat (car, ped, Domino's Pizza sign being waved about by some twit) that the natural instinct kicks in and they get the full power of the light's hotspot courtesy of the "oh, shoot! What's that?! :shock: " reflex.

And that ends up being a kind of synergy - you're working out on reflex whether the threat is going to materialise and at the same time the cause of the risk (inattentive driver) is getting all the warning you can give them delivered right where it needs to go. Shortest possible feedback loop gives everybody more margin.
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby Baalzamon » Wed May 22, 2013 11:25 pm

I only use helmet mounted Ayups when entering unlit corners or I find a driver needs a flash. Other times it's off. The number of times I've been blinded by helmet mounted lights isn't funny
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby trailgumby » Thu May 23, 2013 12:04 am

How do you manage to do that in a timely fashion with the helmet emitters? Do you have a remote on the bars or similar?
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby Baalzamon » Thu May 23, 2013 10:54 am

trailgumby wrote:How do you manage to do that in a timely fashion with the helmet emitters? Do you have a remote on the bars or similar?


Easy, take hand off bars and turn them on. Commute is straight forward so all known spots for helmet light are known. I do have a remote on my bar for my B&M Luxos 179 U
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby find_bruce » Thu May 23, 2013 11:24 am

I have a flood beam on the bars and a spot beam on my helmet, courtesy of a torch. The narrow beam on the helmet means I have good control over where it is aimed & a simple matter to turn the light away from oncoming bikes, peds & cars while still looking ahead. The light naturally sweeps the side streets as I scan them.

Just don't look directly at the cute girl in front of you - a spotlight tends to give that game away fairly quickly.
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby eeksll » Thu May 23, 2013 12:41 pm

wireless ayup switch on the bars would be very handy.
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby find_bruce » Thu May 23, 2013 1:26 pm

eeksll wrote:wireless ayup switch on the bars would be very handy.

There have been a few DIY remotes built on mtbr but if you want to walk in and buy one, coming some time real soon now is the Lupine Betty R 3600 lumens, Wireless remote, 7 LED, $1100 :shock:

I don't know about you, but for $1100 I will reach my hand up & use the switch on my helmet
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby Saturnstarzz » Mon May 27, 2013 8:48 pm

Mulger bill wrote:
rangersac wrote:
trailgumby wrote:'ve literally lost count of the number of times cars have jerked to a halt when I've beamed them, that were about to commence a collision course with yours truly (pull out from side street, enter roundabout from left, right turn across my bows, you know the types of interactions :x ).


Can't agree enough with this. I used to commute with bar mounted Ay-ups, but since switching to the helmet mount I've had zero entry from side issues. It's the first piece of advice I have for anyone riding on the road in the dark.

Annnnd another one. The best "be seen" lights all have lid mounts. It's easy enough to turn them off when you don't need them.



+1 for the lid mounted lights as for choice I have my L+M 500 mounted on my helmet with cable ties. Have it blinky mode and will last few a few week between charge's. As fro blinding someone it takes all of 10 seconds to turn your head away from the oncoming cyclist
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby trailgumby » Mon May 27, 2013 9:42 pm

find_bruce wrote:I don't know about you, but for $1100 I will reach my hand up & use the switch on my helmet

Yep, I'd be wanting to make sure it was still there, too :lol:

I got (justifiably) yelled at by a motorist when I inadvertently had my MTS bar light on full 2700 lumens last week - and it wasn't even dark. In the half-light I couldn't tell which setting it was on. :oops:

3600 lumens - jeepers! Fzzzt! There goes another (ex) possum!
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby Pushy » Thu May 30, 2013 1:47 am


This is a test video of 808#16D lens, but at 1:10+ it shows me switching on twin focused beam helmet lights. Used appropriately it puts your presence 50m+ ahead. Its also useful when one of those badly aimed hi power led lights come towards you on the shared path to light the edge of the path ahead of you without blinding the other rider.
Home made helmet lights.
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby __PG__ » Tue Jun 04, 2013 7:50 pm

I ended up getting a good deal on the Moon Mask from an LBS (online sale). Clips easily onto my helmet and the flashing beam is quite direct.
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby pedaldancer » Wed Jun 12, 2013 9:23 pm

Very happy with my Exposure Joystick and Sirius. One for my helmet and the other on the handlebar. Got a great deal on Wiggle and NO CABLES.
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Re: Helmet mounted front light for urban commuting

Postby gabrielle260 » Wed Jun 12, 2013 9:51 pm

I've been very happy with the Lezyne Microdrive. It is light in weight, compact, puts out a good amount of light for commuting and is USB rechargeable.
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