The MoonShine HID system uses SolarcTM, the brightest bulb on the market. Mounts on your handlebar, helmet, or straps to your head with optional head band. Turn on the Moonshine HID when you need the brightest.
10W Metal Halide white light lighting system.
Power control: RISC processor with 4 levels LED on/off--10W--7W--low battery-indicator.
Power reserve tank: provides up to 30 minutes of additional burn time at 10W.
Quick release clamp or bracket for easy use on handlebar, helmet or on your head. Use it when you are riding, hiking, or climbing.
Mount the lamp on the center of handlebar stem. Easy to adjust it vertically and pivoted 15? laterally.
a Cross Country Rider
from Penn Valley, CA
Date Reviewed: August 5, 2010
Strengths: I like the light, but have not used it much..
Weaknesses: none known
Need your help..
I purchased my light in New Zealand which runs on 240V. I need to get a USA version charger. Do you wanta sell me yours?
I've asked topeak to sell me one - but because this is an older model - there having problems even finding a spare charger..
Bike Setup: Intense 5.5 AVP and 1980 Day-Glow HOT Pink Klien Rascal
from Los Angeles
Date Reviewed: April 5, 2010
A high-intensity discharge light is commonly known as HID light. They are well-known for offering a higher and better light intensity with lower power consumption, it's important for road safety. If a comparison is made with fluorescent and incandescent lights, these light generate a far superior amount of light per unit area of light package.More information visit at: http://www.hidonlinestore.com/
Strengths: Bright smooth beam pattern, well built light head, fast charging time, low price on Ebay
Weaknesses: Battery pack mounting position not ideal, light also could be slightly brighter
So far, this light has proven itself to be a solid buy especially for the low price I found it for on Ebay. It is not blindingly bright, but is not easy to ourun. Generally, I use the light while riding on smooth roads and bike trails, so I can't comment on how well it would perform over less-forgiving terrain. All-in-all the Topeak seems like a good light for anyone needing something powerful enough to clearly illuminate the trail ahead and durable enough to last for years to come.
Similar Products Used: Formerly an ancient Cateye headlight
Bike Setup: Trice QNT recumbent tricycle.
a Cross Country Rider
from Newmarket, Ontario, Canada
Date Reviewed: October 9, 2007
Strengths: Bright light before it dies.
Weaknesses: Disconnect before storing. If it accidently turns on in your equipment bag anything that comes into contact with it will be destroyed and your car/house might catch fire. In other words the lamp get's f'n hot!
This light was awesome when I first got it but the lense cover of the bulb became hazy and the light has now become dim so it's more like the brown spot of a non HID. This is after maybe 30 hours of usage over 2 years. I'm told by the LBS I need a new bulb ($100) which is currently on order. Has anyone else had this problem?
Date Reviewed: September 17, 2007
Strengths: Bright and lightweight. Fixtures to the bike frame are very good. Nice chasis.
Weaknesses: Unreliable, unpredictable.
I originally purchased this light from the local bike shop as I urgently needed a good light to ride home from work and this was the best light that they had. I wanted to be as safe as possible which is why I picked a good light. After charging the battery and using it for the first few times I was very impressed with the amount of light that I was getting out of such a small unit.
About a couple of months down the track I switched it on and the LED indicator system was not working, but I still had light? That was odd I thought. This did not occur again for a while and I decided against taking it back thinking it was just a minor glitch.
About six months down the track I had similar problems with the LED indicator, but it did not appear to effect the main operation of the light so I thought nothing else of it.
Just after the twelve month warranty had expired, it was near dusk and I switched my light on... only there was no light? That was odd? But as soon as it was dark and I tried to switch it on it was fully operational again? that was odd I thought? Perhaps I got more than I bargained for... a light sensor to cut out operation when the ambient background lighting conditions were sufficient? Although I didn't read about any such sensor in the manual?
One of the next times I used the light I was in busy traffic, with many cars behind me and it was hard to differentiate my light from the cars behind me. Then a car pulled out right in front of me! But the LED indicator on my light was working? Inspection of my light revealed that the main light was not working at all! It was initially on when I switched it on, but must have switched off in the middle of the ride, however the green 10W LED was still on! This was pretty dangerous I thought? After all no light must be less dangerous than riding with the false confidence of a light you think is working, but is not!
On future occasions the light would not switch on at all. I mucked about and played with it and noticed that it would resume normal operation if I unplugged the battery cable, gave it a few seconds and plugged it in again, but the light would often switch itself off again moments later.
On yet another occasion it was raining and I had my light operational. It switched itself off and after taking apart the main lighting assembly and taking out the globe I discovered water inside the metal housing? The frequently asked questions on the yellow sheet that come with the light say, quoting: "Your lighting system will work fine in the rain, snow or damp conditions..." This statement is obviously open to question.
On the last occasions I was using my light it would switch on and then off again, with the green LED still on after the battery had been charged and the main light had gone out.
This was a good light when I first purchased it and I invested significantly in a light, where I could have otherwise purchased a second mountain bike with the same amount of money. This light was initially impressive and worked very well, but after just over a year has turned out to be unreliable and non-functional. I am really disappointed that it turned out this way.
I feel that this light has not been engineered to it specification with regard to its robustness to water and its expected life span as quoted in the frequently asked question sheet. I feel that this product requires revision to its design and requires further testing and validation of performance before being put on the market and sold at a premium price.
Similar Products Used: Light and Motion ARC HID LI-ION Bike Light
Bike Setup: Battery was mounted above the forks. Light was mounted on the handlebars.
a Cross Country Rider
from Eagle Rock, CA, USA
Date Reviewed: May 31, 2007
Strengths: Brightness - light weight - compact
After using this light for 6 months - I can say this is one of the best buys I've made for the bike. Going through the trails in SoCal, hard, rough and rocky, the light has not had a single problem. And the way it lights up the trail is beyond impressive. So much so that I prefer it to using a flashlight around the house simply because it light up so well. Using it in the city is equally impressive. Too bright for oncoming traffic. A slight angle adjustment solves that quickly. It cost a bit more than LED's, but it's definitely worth it. Will keep you posted after a year.
a Cross Country Rider
from São Paulo
Date Reviewed: February 23, 2007
This is just an update on my previous post (bellow). Not long after I wrote the review, my MoonShine started to act weird. The battery would not charge despite every effort. I tried to contact Topeak but got no reply, maybe they don´t handle these matters directly when dealing out of US. Took the unit to the importer, who happens to be a friend, and wrote a long letter to Topeak explaining everything I did and everything that happened.
After messing around with another non-working unit (exchanging ballasts, lamps, batteries, etc.) I was able to get one unit working again, using the ballast and battery from my MS with the controller of another one. His Enduro battery would not work though. I was getting 2-3 hours on high.
Then the same problem arose after just a few rides. One night at the trailhead it fired up but started blinking red as in "empty" after just five minutes, going dead shortly after. Bad luck, no cookie this time - drove back home!
I ran a few tests with osciloscopes and other testing equipment, compared the data obtained to the one from the manufacturers (voltage, amperage, input Vs. output, etc.) but wasn´t able to find the problem. After discussing with other electronic heads and trading a few emails with other manufacturers, I have a slight suspicion that maybe the Topeak combo of li-ion battery + charger + WA ballast,and above all the RISC controller, may be flawed. It´s just my take, I could be well wrong.
Topeak has a newer unit with the switch integrated to the battery. Can´t say how it work, never tried it. After this much research and testing I learned a few things about these lights. HIDs are tricky. Very different from halogen and leds and as such they must be used differently. The ballast gets a lot of stress to fire up the lamp, and it doesn´t take the heat buildup very well. That means two things: 1) once you turn an HID on, you keep it on till the end of the ride. That way, both the ballast, lamp and battery will last longer and work smooth. 2) By all means, avoid heat buildup. Keeping it on to drain the battery after a ride, light the ceiling or dazzle your friends with the xenon lamp is a no-no and might cause early problems.
Yes I did some of that, and although I can´t say it was the main cause it sure didn´t help. But I had no clue and I was used to other kinds of light. These are very specific tools and should be used as such. I guess manufacturers should warn more clearly about these things and how it may affect the lifespan of their products. Just a few tips and it could save a lot of hassle and disappointment.
End of story: I returned my unit and the other one to the importer and bought me a L&M Arc Li-ion. Yes they were going to get me a new MS but I´d had to wait too long due to importing issues and I didn´t want to. Also, if I am to face difficult service (I´m not in US) then I thought why not go for a better, although more expensive, lightset. In the meantime I had a chance to test a Planet Bike Alias HID (still with me - 1 month / 10 rides and going strong). Will post a review of the Alias and as soon as I have a good record of rides, on the Arc as well.
a Cross Country Rider
from Elkhorn, WI
Date Reviewed: December 31, 2006
Strengths: Mounting kit - helmet, handlebar, battery mount on stem. Light, bright and clean set-up.
Weaknesses: For some reason, when the battery gets low and you power down, at times, the unit will NOT power back up. Therefore, during a mid ride stop, it makes me nervous to shut it off - so I don't.
I use this for road and mountain. On road, you actually have to angle the beam down a bit, otherwise, oncoming traffic has a tendency to flash high beams. Also, for road use, the handlebar mount design is outstanding and I really like the battery mount on the stem. All of this makes for a very easy to use and super clean set-up. Off road, this light is bright at the high power level. The helmet mount is great. I like the way it sets up on the top of the helmet, rather than on the front. I used NR before this light and the weight of the front of helemet mount often pulled my helmet down in front uncomfortably. THe TOPEAK set up did not do this and was very comfortable. The battery cable is long enough for jersey pocket and the super slim, light battery is fine in the jersey pocket. Though the burn time is shorter than more expensive models, (advertised 2hr at high power) I seem to get actually MORE burn time than advertised - very happy about that one.
Purchased At: Back Yard Bikes / LaGrange General Store
Similar Products Used: Nite Rider, Blackburn,
Date Reviewed: November 25, 2006
Strengths: Nice and bright
Bright but failed after 4 uses!
I would have given it a higher rating if it had stayed working! Now I have to take advantage of Performance Bike's fabulous customer service to just return this and order another. Better than waiting for Topeak to send a replacement.
a Cross Country Rider
from Sao Paulo, SP, Brazil
Date Reviewed: November 20, 2006
Strengths: Bright, bright, bright! Plus: Smart design, ease of use, light weight, fast charging, RISC processor w/ warnings and xtra burning time, and small size. Li-ion battery absolutelly ROCKS!
Weaknesses: Light takes few seconds to reach maximum brightness, but that´s a common trait to all HID so can´t really say it´s a weakness.
Setup, battery and headlamp:
Assembly is a breeze. Takes no longer than 5 minutes to put it or remove it from bike. I´ve found the stem cap battery holder wicked in fact, as the unit itself is quite small and light weight. It won´t jack, wobble or anything, just stay there out of the way, solid and tight. You won´t even notice it´s there, and there´s no need to remove the cap for daytime riding (I´m no lazy but that´s handy). I can foresee it breaking in a crash though, so I try to keep the rubber down and head up!
Got me 2x2.3hr batteries instead of the 4hrs Enduro (wich is heavier). Found it more versatile, and the 2 last longer than 1 Enduro as the burn times are longer than said on the manual (safety margin maybe?). The battery is minimal yet puts out 3hrs+ on 7W. I´m scoring 2:40 on 10W after putting a few cycles on the battery. Charging is fast and easy with the smart charger. Li-ion is heaven, absolutelly no missing my Ni-cad and lead-acid "anchors" of old! It´s impressive, new riders might not notice but veteran night owls like me will know what I mean!
The headlamp is fancy, very minimal and all chrome and shiny. It comes with a plethora of assemblies for both helmet and bar (OS and normal bars, perfect for my road and MTB bikes). I like the fact that it goes centered at the bar and rotates some 15° sideways. It´s impossible not to get the beam exactly where I want or need it. I leave the clamp tight enough so it won´t move when in use, yet I can tilt it up or down by forcing it a bit to aim the beam wherever I need on the trail or road.
The wiring is solid and everything is sealed, no worries using the MoonShine in the rain or mud. The connectors are easy to use, no paranoid gizmos here just realiable and simple solutions, and I appreciate that. The controler has status LEDS and low batt warnings, plus the RISC processor to help with the burning. Also, doesn´t hurt the fact that I can change the bulb myself if needed, as easy as 1-2-3. No need for a round trip to Topeak unless other stuff goes wrong I guess.
The MoonShine really shines, on and off road. Period. I can´t even use it on the streets at night to commute, so much attention it draws with its powerfull, fancy-sportscar white beam. The dark roads get a nice splash of light, I can see road and traffic signs like they´re lit and spot hazards and obstacles from far. Most important: drivers and pedestrians also get to see me! Cool factor 10, safe factor 10+!
On the trail, the 7W setting is more than enough for fast riding on open trails, going up, flat or down. The beam pattern is near-perfect (a hot spot in the center allowing for deep view and a bright halo to give a good sense of surrounding), eliminating the need for a second light. I use a small Cateye LED flahslight attached to my helmet to see gearing, cyclocomputer reading and bike repairing, and that´s it.
Faster, more technical and bumpier downhill are also easily tackled @ 10W wich is slightly brighter and whiter than the 7W. More technical singletrack riding in the woods might demand a 10 or 20W helmet mount though, no matter the output of any bar rig.
I prefer my lights on the bar for many reasons. Trail dust in summer and fog in winter can blind me with such powerful and white light. No blinding riding partners, drivers and pedestrians either. Plus I prefer the shadow pattern of bar lamps to give me a better sense of depth. To cap it off, I can´t get the battery reading with the switch on my helmet. This light is powerful enough for all but the technical riding blasting just from the bars IMHO.
Light choice is highly personal, as most other things. HIDs are powerful either way, just read the reviews on other setups to realize that. 10W, 13W, 16W... you´ll blow everything (including you bank account but that´s another story) with any of these babies. Most users/reviewers share similar opinions on HID capacity but not on wiring, setup, batteries...
This is as powerful as bike lights get, so in deciding to go HID other factors played in. IMHO, at this point it boils down to battery, unit size and design, ease of use and assembly, and reliability. I´ve found the MoonShine to score high on most of those areas, all for a nice price and no fuss. Solid, no-nonsense performer. It´s not super-fancy (unless by its very HID nature), just a small, light and well tought-out bike light to extend my riding pleasure, increase my safety and fun on and off road. And so it does.
Similar Products Used: Dozens of halogen setups (Moon Unit, Marwi, Cateye, etc.), some LED rigs (Cygolite Hi-Flux 100 - nice!) and a few HID setups as well.
Bike Setup: Moots YBB / Scott CR1 Pro
a Cross Country Rider
from Eagle Rock, CA, USA
Date Reviewed: November 14, 2006
Strengths: Bright Light! Light Weight! Very trim fitting, no bulky batteries or wiring. The mounting seems weak but it isn't too bad. Went out on my first night ride down El Prieto, 1 small low speed fall. Fortunately if you haven't tightened it, the mount collapses pretty nicely. Staightened it out and kept going. Small scratch but it's to be expected (now it has some character as my friend will say) Extremely impressed with the unit. Would highly recommend if your doing less than 3 hour rides.
Weaknesses: The only weakness I can see is the mount, but so far it has proven itself worthy. Longer battery time would be nice but that would add bulk.
Oh one more thing. If you cruise around the city after your rides, the removal and reinstall is a snap. I really recommend this light for it's simplicity. Very well thought out.
Bike Setup: Trek 9.8 with Weimaraner sometimes pulling ahead
a Weekend Warrior
from INDIAN HEAD, MARYLAND, USA
Date Reviewed: November 3, 2006
Strengths: Bright, light, compact.
Weaknesses: Seems a little flimsy, perhaps "minimalist" is a better word. The light cable connector to the battery cable is very difficult to snap together.
I commute year-round with an HID light for the past six years. I like the wide splash of light it throws on the road and trees along the road, which I think improves my visibility from behind. This light is as bright as the Cateye Stadium light, which was much heavier. It has plenty of power for my 50-minutes-each-way commute. It has an automatic feature that switches to low (7 watts) power on its own when the battery has 30 minutes left -- that comes on during the last ten minutes of my commute. Low power isn't bad at all for commuting. The whole thing is rather flimsy compared to the Cateye Stadium, but it's cheaper and I think it will work well for commuting, maybe not so well for off-road riding or those who take spills.
Similar Products Used: Cateye Stadium III for six years.
Bike Setup: Cannondale H400
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: July 18, 2006
Strengths: Bright light, mounting system is great, reliable.
Weaknesses: none, but am a little concerned about the bracket that holds the battery to the stem, however I have faith that a system made for mountain bikes should be prepared for the bashing that some trails can give.
I do love this light, I have owned a HID light before (lume) but the product was so faulty, a year later I decided to try HID again and reading the below reviews and value for money this was the light. What the previous reviewers have said is true, it stops 4wd's in their tracks, you can blind possums, and you can see spiders in the tree's. The light is bright and constant, it seems custom made to my requirements, nice solid beam. Weight, well if I was worried about weight I wouldn't ride a kona stuff as a cross country racer nor eat krispy kreames like they are going out of business, however, the system is not as heavy as the noghtflux or night stick. The manual is pretty straight forward, do this for that and so on. My one and only concern is the mounting to the stem, the battery has a bracket that attaqches to another bracket and then onto the stem, if care is not taken when mounting it the whole thing appears to explode in your hands and my first attempt saw the battery hit the ground and my jaw drop thinking I killed it, once I mastered the take on and off system I was impressed that the battery can take a knock (not happy about the scratch though). However as I said in the weekness, it doesn't appear that it's super stable but so far it's taken the knocks and bumps of some pretty rough stuff, I have faith that a light designed for this style riding should be able to withstand what I can throw at it, since I am racing with a jump bike I am very used to a point and shoot style riding and just hold on and steer where I want to go........if it ever breaks I will post again.
I highly recommend this light, but i am sure at this price range most HIDs will do the job fine, but what made this stand out is that it's cheaper than most for the same thing, the 30 minute reserve light when the time is up, mounting and the handy risc on off gauge switch.
In short, i went off a cliff and i survived but my light didnt. The light hit a rock and has been out for a couple of days, its not the battery or the connections. When i shake it i get a small rattling noise. Needless to say im pissed that my $400 light is out :madman: but i would like to get it f ... Read More »
I just purchased a Moonshine HID. It is brand new. I have cycled the battery 5 times but I'm getting runtime like 10mins max before the light shut down with the low battery indicator blinking.
I tested the battery with a voltmeter fully charged and after the light shutdown. Both time read in exce ... Read More »
Performance.com has them for $349, but I have a question or 2.
Does anyone know if the charger is a 'smart charger'?
Any other deals out there on HID lights that offer capability to do both helmet and handlebar mounts?
I'm not really in the creativity market for the Trailtech light (likely ... Read More »