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Shortening days and unlit routes

pastryboypastryboy Posts: 1,385
edited August 2009 in Commuting chat
winter break on the cards?

I had a look at lights but anything good enough is horribly expensive. My hour long journey is 90% unlit and mostly along canal so poor visibility could be hazardous.

Posts

  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 16,015
    Road route alternative? I used to commute along the canal (waited til it was light enough in the morning before I started) but now take the road. Aside from being quicker, it is more interesting if less attractive. Ultimately, though much of it appears rural, it does pass near some fairly dodgy estates and I wouldn't want to be on it after dark even if I did have good lights.

    Still, if you have the option of flexi time, I found it was really only about ten weeks when it was properly dark in each direction.
    Faster than a tent.......
  • Eau RougeEau Rouge Posts: 1,118
    I used one of these guys
    http://www.wiggle.co.uk/p/cycle/7/Smart ... 360022781/
    on unlit country roads last winter without a problem.
  • whyamiherewhyamihere Posts: 7,596
    Eau Rouge wrote:
    I used one of these guys
    http://www.wiggle.co.uk/p/cycle/7/Smart ... 360022781/
    on unlit country roads last winter without a problem.
    You must be a bat...

    You get what you pay for with the lights.
  • pastryboypastryboy Posts: 1,385
    Roads aren't realy an option - would be something like 13 miles each way through London and where I am around North London is very traffic (and traffic light) dense. Flexi-time I do get but family means I need to get home early.

    Is that light really up to the job in pitch black? I thought the cheaper ones were just intended to keep you visible and you had to spend a fortune for something to actually light your way? Obviously at that price two would be feasible. My concern is really seeing the numerous bumps and cracks in the pathways I travel on - my distance is such that I need to be doing an average of no less than 14mph or it will take too long.
  • JonS123JonS123 Posts: 171
    I hatve a Cateye single shot (http://www.wiggle.co.uk/p/cycle/7/Catey ... 360031623/ chose wiggle as first retailer that came to my head) which lit up the canal toepath more than enough during the winter nights. It comes with a mains charger and does 2 hours on "high"
  • Skippy2309Skippy2309 Posts: 426
    get a torch, a nitecore D10 or D20 are amazingly bright. Fenix have a bike mount system.

    I have had both nitecores mentioned and they are seriously impressive.
    FCN: 5/6 Fixed Gear (quite rapid) in normal clothes and clips :D

    Cannondale CAAD9 / Mongoose Maurice (heavily modified)
  • CiBCiB Posts: 6,098
    Nothing to add, but this gives me the top 5 threads all at once. Bigger than The Beatles me. :)
  • Kieran_BurnsKieran_Burns Posts: 9,757
    It is true you get what you pay for, and you have to balance cost and benefit - I've spent over £200 for the front lights alone but can see well over a 100' of the utterly pitch black bridleway now.

    I'm running a Cateye singleshot plus and a Hope vision 2 - well worth the money (especially as I got the higher output hope for the cost of the lower one!)
    Chunky Cyclists need your love too! :-)
    2009 Specialized Tricross Sport
    2011 Trek Madone 4.5
    2012 Felt F65X
    Proud CX Pervert and quiet roadie. 12 mile commuter
  • symosymo Posts: 1,743
    Last night on dartmoor was poitively apocolyptic. The cloud was dense (at 7:30) effeectively making it pitch black. Then a gale force wind was blowing across, followed by horizontal rain.

    All in all not pleasant.

    However I can report that even wearing sunglasses the new Aurora P7 SSC Torch I got from Dealextreme performed excellently. The light was bright and lit up the road for some distance.
    +++++++++++++++++++++
    we are the proud, the few, Descendents.

    Panama - finally putting a nail in the economic theory of the trickle down effect.
  • prawnyprawny Posts: 5,426
    symo wrote:
    Last night on dartmoor was poitively apocolyptic. The cloud was dense (at 7:30) effeectively making it pitch black. Then a gale force wind was blowing across, followed by horizontal rain.

    All in all not pleasant.

    However I can report that even wearing sunglasses the new Aurora P7 SSC Torch I got from Dealextreme performed excellently. The light was bright and lit up the road for some distance.

    I hear alot of good things about these, I might try one this winter.
    Saracen Tenet 3 - 2015 - Dead - Replaced with a Hack Frame
    Voodoo Bizango - 2014 - Dead - Hit by a car
    Vitus Sentier VRS - 2017
  • R_T_AR_T_A Posts: 488
    pastryboy wrote:
    winter break on the cards?

    I had a look at lights but anything good enough is horribly expensive. My hour long journey is 90% unlit and mostly along canal so poor visibility could be hazardous.

    What's your budget? I got a Niteflux vision stick commuter for £63: http://www.jejamescycles.co.uk/id40941.html

    I have that and a Tesco Cree torch (£10) on the helmet for focussing on rougher patches which helps too.[/b]
    Giant Escape R1
    FCN 8
    "Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life."
    - Terry Pratchett.
  • symosymo Posts: 1,743
    deal extreme aurora p7 and two rechargable batteries, a recharger a case to keep the batteries in, handlebar mount and a helmet mount cost me £37. Forget cycle specificlights they just don't offer sensible prices anymore.
    +++++++++++++++++++++
    we are the proud, the few, Descendents.

    Panama - finally putting a nail in the economic theory of the trickle down effect.
  • RedJohnRedJohn Posts: 272
    Eau Rouge wrote:
    I used one of these guys
    http://www.wiggle.co.uk/p/cycle/7/Smart ... 360022781/
    on unlit country roads last winter without a problem.
    I've used two of these (together) as backups ... doable but nervous, I'd say, wouldn't personally recommend it as the only solution, especially if you don't want to slow down.

    I've got a Hope HID MTB light which on-road (and off) is fabulous, however you don't really need to pay for MTB brightness if you're on predictable surfaces like the canal or road. Plus they dazzle pedestrians which is a bit unfriendly.

    Something in between like the Hope Vison 1 (£80 odd) would probably be a good compromise - budget depending of course. Haven't actually used it myself but mulling over the idea as winter approaches.
  • RedJohnRedJohn Posts: 272
    symo wrote:
    deal extreme aurora p7 and two rechargable batteries, a recharger a case to keep the batteries in, handlebar mount and a helmet mount cost me £37. Forget cycle specificlights they just don't offer sensible prices anymore.
    I think that depdns what you are buying. The newest super-bright lights, designed for off road, are very expensive - but they're far brighter than lights used to be.

    For something as bright as was available say 5 or so years ago, prices are probably lower if anything.
  • vorsprungvorsprung Posts: 1,953
    pastryboy wrote:
    winter break on the cards?

    I had a look at lights but anything good enough is horribly expensive. .

    I hear that these jokers

    http://stores.shop.ebay.co.uk/SAM-s-Spo ... QQ_armrsZ1

    Do Ixon lights at a good price. I haven't used them myself
  • AidyAidy Posts: 2,015
    You shouldn't really need anything special to ride along a canal path.

    You only need enough to light your way, pretty much any light which is more than a "be seen by" light should be sufficient.
  • symosymo Posts: 1,743
    First get one of these
    Mount that to your bike with one of these
    Power it with http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.5790 keeping the spare one in this and recharge them here.

    Add in the cost of an adapter plug for the charger and you are good to go. I was looking at a Hope Vision one, but I am more than happy with this.
    +++++++++++++++++++++
    we are the proud, the few, Descendents.

    Panama - finally putting a nail in the economic theory of the trickle down effect.
  • pastryboypastryboy Posts: 1,385
    Thanks for the helpful posts. What is the battery life likely to be on the torches, I need two hours a day.
  • fossyantfossyant Posts: 2,549
    Tesco's give you 1-1.5 hours. So 2 set's of AA rechargeable.

    Cycle specific lights are expensive - I have two Hope Vision 1's, but the torches are a good compromise - watch the angle in traffic or you'll blind someone......

    If using a 'torch' make sure you have a backup light, same goes for any lights really.
  • tjwoodtjwood Posts: 328
    Loads of info about lights for all budgets suitable for offroad use in this sticky in the MTB Buying Advice forum:
    http://www.bikeradar.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=12641036
  • chuckcorkchuckcork Posts: 1,471
    Eau Rouge wrote:
    I used one of these guys
    http://www.wiggle.co.uk/p/cycle/7/Smart ... 360022781/
    on unlit country roads last winter without a problem.

    Absolutely pathetic light for anything but walking along a flat level path with nothing front of you.

    If you can afford it get something decent (I have a SON hub with an Edelux light, absolutely f*cking brilliant for high speed rides on pitch black partly potholed country roads!!!!!!) as this is only good for going into the cellar.
    'Twas Mulga Bill, from Eaglehawk, that caught the cycling craze....
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