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Recommend me a rear light

getprggetprg Posts: 245
edited October 2012 in Commuting general
Maybe I'm just unlucky but I haven't managed to get a rear light to last more than two winters of riding/commuting. I have chosen good quality - firstly a Cat Eye (can't remember the model) followed by a Blackburn Mars 3 (following a recommendation on here). They were bright enough but in the end the switches failed - not sure why.

My commute can have some extreme conditions (in the Pennines) with mix of town centre, urban and unlit moorland.

I'm looking for a double set up (just in case one fails) - please help me out. At £20 a time I expect a rear light to last longer than 2 winters.

PS by comparison my cheapo (expendable!) magicshine front, that by all accounts should have died long ago, is now entering the third winter in rude health!
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  • oxomanoxoman Posts: 8,344
    I currently have 2 oxford rear led lights that have been running 2 winters and about to enter their third never been taken off the bike apart from changing batteries .
    Too many bikes according to Mrs O.
  • jejvjejv Posts: 566
    Search for "astrum light" on these forums.
    http://www.wittons.co.uk/product_infos. ... _Light_Red

    We've had half a dozen for a couple of years, without any failures. Then Cambridge is pretty dry. Our bikes with racks also have B&M D-Toplight permanent - cos' it has a long runtime and it's bright-ish. So if anyone gets caught out without proper lights, they have something useful. B&M don't seem to have heard of ingress protecion though,
    so they need dismantling to clean off the corrosion from time to time.
  • Get a Hope district 2 it's expensive but it's worth it, insanely bright, excellent bracket mount, I had a cateye light and it felll off, I have had cheap lights useless things, It's better to buy a good quality light for your rear, I had this light 12 hours and someone asked me what light it was, It is brighter than most car rear fog lights.
  • supersonicsupersonic Posts: 82,708 Lives Here
    I use two very cheap ones, have lasted ages. They can be hit and miss, but so can expensive ones, seen many of those fail too, especially the Hope.
  • prawnyprawny Posts: 5,414
    Smart 1/2 watt if you can still get em. I've had the same two for 4 years.
    Saracen Tenet 3 - 2015 - Dead - Replaced with a Hack Frame
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    Vitus Sentier VRS - 2017
  • getprggetprg Posts: 245
    Thanks everyone for the replies - seems that others have experienced similar problems with rear lights. Reading here and the cyclechat forum the Smart 1/2 watt gets good write ups - so...............

    Smart it will be this time (third brand lucky?)
  • jejvjejv Posts: 566
    supersonic wrote:
    I use two very cheap ones, have lasted ages. They can be hit and miss, but so can expensive ones, seen many of those fail too, especially the Hope.

    Yeah. I figure if I have a couple of decent cheap lights in my pannier/backpack, that's more reliable (and quite a bit cheaper) than one expensive light.
  • Have a look at the Moon Shield 60.

    http://www.wiggle.co.uk/moon-shield-60- ... ear-light/

    It's quite expensive at £40, but well worth it to be visible on the roads. Just got one of these and it is very bright, you are not going to be missed with this on the back . It has 3 different constant brightness settings and 2 flash modes (the strobe effect might wee-wee off drivers though!!) It's great for commuting to work, as it recharges by plugging into the USB port on a computer. It attaches to bike with a rubber strap and the light is easily detachable from the plastic mounting plate by pushing in a release button.

    Can't comment on reliability yet as only had a few months. However, build quality is good and survived several downpours and hosedowns so far!
  • DrLexDrLex Posts: 2,142
    Paddyg7 wrote:
    Have a look at the Moon Shield 60.

    [...]

    Can't comment on reliability yet as only had a few months. However, build quality is good and survived several downpours and hosedowns so far!

    It's a great light - have had one for almost one year. The plastic clip broke on my first one, after I had started to attach it to my saddlebag loop. I now leave the warranty replacement one attached permanently to the rubber bracket (taking the whole thing off to recharge - the rubber socket cover has gone AWOL)
    Location: ciderspace
  • deswellerdesweller Posts: 5,271
    The BlackburnMars 3 is a little vulnerable to water ingress and crud buildup around the button, but it can be recovered by taking it apart, giving it a good clean and rebuilding it with a smear of grease on the mating surfaces.
    - - - - - - - - - -
    On Strava.{/url}
  • desweller wrote:
    The BlackburnMars 3 is a little vulnerable to water ingress and crud buildup around the button, but it can be recovered by taking it apart, giving it a good clean and rebuilding it with a smear of grease on the mating surfaces.

    It's agreat little light, but a little fragile. I used one on my MTB, on rougher ground (with the odd bunny-hop here and there). I rattled it to bits - the bulb housing had come away from the clip mechnism somewhere on the ride.
    If it was on a regular commuting route I would happily buy another one.
    2007 Felt Q720 (the ratbike)
    2012 Cube Ltd SL (the hardtail XC 26er)
    2014 Lapierre Zesty TR 329 (the full-sus 29er)
  • Regarding the Smart... I have one, had two but destroyed one when I lost a fight with gravity, physics and the road...

    Anyway - if you don't have a rear mudguard you might want to tape up (sellotape will do) around the edge of the front/back... as it's not waterproof:)
  • I have two cheap ones. What I would say is avoid the all singing dancing light combination. One of mine has 8 different flashing combos. It takes ages to turn off. All you really need is on/off/flash.
    --
    Saw a sign on a restaurant that said Breakfast, any time -- so I ordered French Toast in the Renaissance.
  • fossyantfossyant Posts: 2,549
    Astrums are good, can get moisture in but does not stop them working, and a while on the radiator sorts that. Smart 0.5w aren't good in wet, slightest damp getting in stops the switch.

    Mars 4 is good. Mars 3 can go bonkers if they get wet.
  • alfabluealfablue Posts: 8,497
    The Smart Lunar R2 seems a better design that the 1/2 watts, can be had for £15 or £16. Got one from Wheelies for £13 a few weeks ago, but they have gone up now. We have 3 between us at home and they have been fine, also have some 1/2 watts and have had no problems with water, but we do use mudguards in winter. They certainly seem to be the brightest per £, and the R2 also has some "interesting" flashing modes beyond the usual.
  • HoopdriverHoopdriver Posts: 2,023
    I have written a review comparing four rear lights:
    Cateye 1100
    Blackburn Mars 3.0
    Blackburn Mars 4.0
    Smart 1/2 Watt Rear Light

    I hope it might be of use

    You can read it here:
    http://my-bicycle-and-i.co.uk/2012/lanterns-rouge/
  • MrGrumpyMrGrumpy Posts: 288
    just a thought but maybe some Vaseline round the switches of the smart might do the trick with regard moisture?
  • lee170lee170 Posts: 236
    The new knog blinder rear light is awesome, USB recharge system, insanely bright!! Looks really good to, very slim but one of the brightest lights I have come across,rubber strap with metal clip thing, leaves no marks on seat post.
    £35
    2015 orange crush
    2015 cannondale super six evo
  • alfabluealfablue Posts: 8,497
    The Smart Lunar is £15.99 at the moment. Most lumens per £.
  • The RookieThe Rookie Posts: 27,748
    Moonshield 60 here, used for a year, no failures at all, still bright as a bright thing (drivers at work reckon it's brighter than a car's rear fog light), good life, easy to recharge.
  • fossyantfossyant Posts: 2,549
    If the OP has a Magicshine front, then how about the magicshine 818s rears.

    I have two rears and have changed the battery packs to 6 x AA system as I've used the original lipo batteries as spares for a MS front.

    I had one fail after over a year, partly my fault for opening it wrong, which I replaced.
  • this for £18

    http://road.cc/content/review/55378-pdw ... 0-rear-led

    1w led with combined reflector, it's very bright!
  • http://www.wiggle.co.uk/niterider-cherr ... ear-light/

    £16.24 a bargain. I've got one and it is very very bright and also has good side on visability. Something I did a while back was to buy a large battery charger that can charge 8 at once and buy a load of decent rechargeable batteries such as vapextech ones.
  • HeadhuunterHeadhuunter Posts: 6,494
    Smart ½ watt or 1 watt lights are good for the price but beware if you ride in the wet without mudguards. The slightest sign of rain being sprayed on them by the rear wheel and they start to go doollally, either they switch off completely mid ride and won't come on again until they have been thoroughly dried out, or they won't switch off. Usually they work fine again once they have been dried out but one of mine has stopped working completely or should I say it will not turn off, as soon as you put the batts in, it comes on and the only way of turning it off is by pulling the batts out again.

    It helps if you spread either Vaseline or motor grease on and around the seal...
    Do not write below this line. Office use only.
  • ClairepClairep Posts: 17
    I 've had a Electron EHP228 Pico 7 rear Bike Light for 2 winters no problem, last all winter before changing the batteries its 7 LEDs wide and very visible, £8-15 dependig where on sale.
    Road:Giant SCR3
    Commuting: Giant TCX2
  • +1 for the Moon Shield 60; very bright, lasts for ages on a USB charge , reliable and really quick to fit & remove. If you shop around you can find it for under £36. I use it for commuting and on my MTB for early/late starts, it doesn't seem to mind a bit of wet & crud.
  • wyadvdwyadvd Posts: 590
    This:
    http://store.dinottelighting.com/300r-r ... -p111.aspx

    Just the best you can buy at a price you will not love
  • alfabluealfablue Posts: 8,497
    wyadvd wrote:
    This:
    http://store.dinottelighting.com/300r-r ... -p111.aspx

    Just the best you can buy at a price you will not love
    It really offers little more in terms of illumination than some of the twin LED 1 watt £15-£20 jobbies cited above.

    Also, built in, rechargable batteries are a disadvantage - when you forget to charge it you're stuffed, with mine I just put in another set of AAAs that I carry. Furthermore, Li batteries (all batteries) deteriorate over time, and will fail. Consider, can your built in battery be easily and cheaply be replaced or is the light ready for the bin after the 12-24 months this process takes?

    Some of the "high end" light manufacturers are being slaughtered by the availability of cheap high powered LEDs. For example few years ago I would have to pay £300-£600 for 1000 lumen front lights from the likes of Lupine; now I can get one for £13.
  • prb007prb007 Posts: 703
    This just came from the postie (admittedly after 20 days!)

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/5-LED-Bicycle ... 3f1c021ca7

    Very impressed - a good LED plus you get the fancy integrated laser doodad.
    Very well made, looks well sealed and was well packaged (a magnet-flap
    box, which I will re-use for tubes :D )
    8 and a half quid, not sure you can get more bang for buck from mainstream
    sellers or 'big-name' lights.
    If Wales was flattened out, it'd be bigger than England!
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    Singlespeed Planet X Kaffenback for dodging potholes
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  • prb007prb007 Posts: 703
    I know this is a rear light post...but;

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/1800LM-CREE-X ... 3a7acbc6a2

    These were nearly £100 two years ago :shock:
    If Wales was flattened out, it'd be bigger than England!
    Planet X Ti Sportive for Sportives & tours
    Orange Alpine 160 for Afan,Alps & dodging trees
    Singlespeed Planet X Kaffenback for dodging potholes
    An On-One Inbred for hard-tail shenanigans...
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