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Commuting in the dark - safety/lighting equipment

JuddlinskiJuddlinski Posts: 54
edited September 2013 in Commuting general
Im still considering commuting in and out of London when the clocks go back/forward/ whichever - I can never remember. When the nights get dark, ok?

Just wondering what your tips/recommendations for lighting/safety equipment are? I've seen some spoke reflectors that look pretty impressive, but just wondering if there are any drawbacks to these things?

Posts

  • andyh01andyh01 Posts: 570
    Whilst not in London and not looking at spoke reflectors for my commute I,m also looking for some lighting equipment, I'm looking at the moon shield package on offer at Stonehenge cycle £85 for a 60 lume rear light and a 500 lume front, I'm looking to replace a lenzye microdrive that went faulty within a yr so managed to get a full refund, I'm also looking at the hope light offering over a 1000 lume front and 100 lume rear but expensive at £200 I'm not sure if the spoke lights are a bit of a gimmick altho people on here have said it does make the wheel stand out and it generally is the first part of the bike that other rd uses will see, I also have reflective clothing too. Remember though cycling even in dark is still safe, and can actually be safer in dark then during day.
  • iPeteiPete Posts: 6,076
    The spoke reflectors are handy, you can also buy a4 strips of 3m tape in black or white that can be fairly inconspicuously placed on your frame.
  • oxomanoxoman Posts: 8,362
    I have spoke reflectors or straws depending on what you want to call them on both my bikes, no drawbacks just need wiping clean occasionally. Cheap Cree light on the front with RSP light with strobe function and smart lunar 2 x1/2 watt rear with small cateye light as a back up. I also wear bibs / jackets with reflective detail also my overshoes are hi viz as well.
    Too many bikes according to Mrs O.
  • The Moon X Power 500 + Shield 60 package is good. The 60 lumen rear light is very bright, I think anything brighter has the potential to become annoying to anyone following. I just ordered a Smart Lunar rear light as a backup too.

    I got some spoke reflectors in the Lidl cycle offers and they're very effective, they even show up quite well in the day but like all reflective stuff a light needs to be shining at them before they do any good. I'm trying to work out the best way to attach pedal reflectors to my Shimano SPD pedals at the moment.

    There's a good summary of the regulations here:
    http://www.ctc.org.uk/cyclists-library/regulations/lighting-regulations
  • spen666spen666 Posts: 17,709
    Juddlinski wrote:
    Im still considering commuting in and out of London when the clocks go back/forward/ whichever - I can never remember. ....
    Spring forward
    Fall back

    easy peasy
    Want to know the Spen666 behind the posts?
    Then read MY BLOG @ http://www.pebennett.com

    Twittering @spen_666
  • t4tomot4tomo Posts: 2,643
    if you are in and out of london in all street light lit zones then you just need a "been seen" light or two - one steady one flashing each end is good.

    the smart R1 rear lights are good but the accompianing front lights isnt brilliant.

    The Knog lights are excellent.

    spokeies / straws or flashing valve lights - see ebay etc - are very good too.

    you do not need a 500-1000 lumen front light unless you plan to go night time MTB in woods or cycle down unlit country lanes.
    Bianchi Infinito CV
    Bianchi Via Nirone 7 Ultegra
    Brompton S Type
    Carrera Vengeance Ultimate Ltd
    Gary Fisher Aquila '98
    Front half of a Viking Saratoga Tandem
  • The Moon X Power 500 + Shield 60 package is good. The 60 lumen rear light is very bright, I think anything brighter has the potential to become annoying to anyone following. I just ordered a Smart Lunar rear light as a backup too.

    I got some spoke reflectors in the Lidl cycle offers and they're very effective, they even show up quite well in the day but like all reflective stuff a light needs to be shining at them before they do any good. I'm trying to work out the best way to attach pedal reflectors to my Shimano SPD pedals at the moment.

    There's a good summary of the regulations here:
    http://www.ctc.org.uk/cyclists-library/regulations/lighting-regulations
    Shimano SM-PD22 refelectors fit most double sided SPD pedals that do not have cages, not cheap though: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Pedalaufsatz-PD ... B000NUEJNG
    or http://www.rosebikes.co.uk/article/shim ... aid:115758
    I bought some from Rose Bikes when I was ordering other stuff and they are quite good quality, solid build, attach very firmly and because they are reasonably heavy they cause the pedal to rotate to the ideal position for clipping in on the other side. I have used them for two years commuting.

    If you are wanting to be totally legal you will need BSI 6102/3 or German K marked lights at front and rear. These are hard to get hold of but there are some around. Best value legal rear light is probably an EL156 or EL153 from Eurocyclelighting: http://www.eurolightcycling.co.uk/products.aspx?id=2
    The EL156 includes a BSI reflector as well, the EL153 is more compact, both can be fitted to a standard reflector bracket, neither will be very bright so use as a back up to your preferred rear light. (The EL123 is also BSI compliant but is a 'krypton filament bulb fossil that is best ignored as the battery consumption will be high and the bulb will keep blowing.) I have just ordered an EL156 so will let you know what it is actually like when it arrives.

    For the front light you are stuck looking at antiquated krypton bulb offerings with BSI marking or go to German K marked quality stuff such as Busch & Muller.

    Alternatively some BSI light sets at Halfords including BSI LED front lights, but quality reported to be variable and some not actually marked on the lense with BSI6102/3 as they should be to be legal. Also for the cheapest set only the rear light is approved.
  • You could go with this....

    2012olympics.jpg
  • The RookieThe Rookie Posts: 27,748
    I use....
    Cheap Cree torch mounted onthe bars at the front
    Hi vis gilet
    Reflectors on the rear of the crank arms (silver tape)
    Reflectors on the rear of the seatpost and panniers (red tape)
    Moon shield 60 rear light - unbeatable for the money!
  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,495
    I'm repeating myself across so many threads - but loads of ppl are asking about lighting ...

    Please make sure you have at least 2 back lights on and working at the start of each run. That way if either one fails the otherone should continue to operate as a backup. Reason being is that you won't notice a back light not working straight away and a light could fail for a number of reasons - including falling off as happened to me last winter (I had 2 other lights on though)
  • slowbike wrote:
    I'm repeating myself across so many threads - but loads of ppl are asking about lighting ...

    Please make sure you have at least 2 back lights on and working at the start of each run. That way if either one fails the otherone should continue to operate as a backup. Reason being is that you won't notice a back light not working straight away and a light could fail for a number of reasons - including falling off as happened to me last winter (I had 2 other lights on though)
    It is a good point and I will be fitting the 'legal' Eurolight EL156 as a back-up to other lights, e.g. my Magicshine MJ818, only used for commuting in traffic as it is flipping bright. For group rides and country lanes I use a more ordinary LED (on steady for group rides). On long runs in the country I also carry a cheap compact 1W LED front light in my saddlebag, which I used once when my previous Magicshine front lamp malfunctioned and it was just about possible to limp home slowly in the dark, a lot better and safer than nothing.
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