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As the summer begins to draw to a close I am starting to think about riding afterwork in the Autumn and Winter and I realise I am going to need some sturdy and very powerfull lights to avoid increasing my crash/near crash/f**kup frequency by several factors of importance. Any suggestions on some really good illumination systems?
 

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I understand the hid systems are great, but i just received a light from bicyclelights.com, and i think it's great, for the money. I'm not trying to convince you it's as good as a 400 dollar system, but for 80 dollars it's a steal, and the owner is great about questions.
 

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Inbred Homebrewer
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Light & Motion ARC cabeza (or whatever the latest version of their top of the line light is called). You'll pay a premium for them but they're worth it.

Very, very bright, light weight, 3.5 hr burn time, ~3 hrs to charge. I've had mine ~ 1.5 yrs. Used it a LOT last fall through spring both on and off-road. No complaints.

roland w. said:
As the summer begins to draw to a close I am starting to think about riding afterwork in the Autumn and Winter and I realise I am going to need some sturdy and very powerfull lights to avoid increasing my crash/near crash/f**kup frequency by several factors of importance. Any suggestions on some really good illumination systems?
 

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roland w. said:
As the summer begins to draw to a close I am starting to think about riding afterwork in the Autumn and Winter and I realise I am going to need some sturdy and very powerfull lights to avoid increasing my crash/near crash/f**kup frequency by several factors of importance. Any suggestions on some really good illumination systems?
Just got back from a pre-dawn trails raid here in Santa Fe powered by the awesome L&M Arc system. I got the NiMH set-up for $325 and can't say enough good things about the system! Powered me and 1/2 my team through 24hrs in The Old Pueblo (Tucson) and many early a.m. late evening rides. The lighter Li-Ion battery is cool, but $100 more. I've also been seeing great deals on NightRider HID systems, but have had little luck with there equipment. IMO, weak connectors, and poor mounting for helmet use, as it cantilevers the whole light/weight from the rear where it mounts to the base. The L&M HID system places the light head centered on the "pad" that attaches to your helmet (same for bar set-up too) that makes it feel "neutral" despite the few ounces on your head!

Lastly, the folks at L&M are great, and super-helpful if ecer needed. I ended up getting a great deal on a 2nd battery to boot, and excellent charging/support at 24HRS. in Tucson.
 

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roland w. said:
As the summer begins to draw to a close I am starting to think about riding afterwork in the Autumn and Winter and I realise I am going to need some sturdy and very powerfull lights to avoid increasing my crash/near crash/f**kup frequency by several factors of importance. Any suggestions on some really good illumination systems?
I use this: http://www.blt-lights.com/hb_betanh40.htm

I *think* it comes with 2 battery packs - each the size of a cigarette pack - no bulky 'water bottle' battery pack to lug around.
 

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Just ordered LUME Strada HID

looks like the most simplified HID system out there, no battery indicator or lo/hi beam settings, just on and off. great reviews on build quality and service and the price is right if you need an HID system. I bought the overnite charger and xtra battery for $340.00 (MTBR link gives you a discount code ...)

more later after I use (and abuse) it...
 

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roland w. said:
As the summer begins to draw to a close I am starting to think about riding afterwork in the Autumn and Winter and I realise I am going to need some sturdy and very powerfull lights to avoid increasing my crash/near crash/f**kup frequency by several factors of importance. Any suggestions on some really good illumination systems?
Dont forget to check out the MTBR light shootout:

http://www.mtbr.com/spotlight/lightshootout/

I personally use the Jet system. Not HID, but significantly less money, and almost as bright. What I do give up is run time 2-2.5hours VS 3-4hours on HID. Awesome lights, great support.

I run one on my helmet, and one on the bars. IF I only could run one I would choose the 20W on the helmet (did that for 2 years)

TJ
 

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006_007 said:
Dont forget to check out the MTBR light shootout:

http://www.mtbr.com/spotlight/lightshootout/

I personally use the Jet system.... Awesome lights, great support.

I run one on my helmet, and one on the bars. IF I only could run one I would choose the 20W on the helmet (did that for 2 years)

TJ
I forgot to mention JetLites! Doh! On a tighter budget, they are far and away superior to a lot of other non-HID systems, AND sell parts seperately so you can build your own battery packs! I rented a set-up for Moab, loved the interface and durability, and found the run times to be good....

Great folks, fellow riders, and very helpful on the phone. The i13 and i20 are so bright, I found no problems navigating the most technical terrain at night.
 

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I did a 12 hour race (midnight to noon) with some cheap Performance lights and they really left me wanting. So I went out and got A JET helmet light and I love it. I used it at 24 hours of Snowshoe and it performed without fault. You can get a 12w spot light or a 20w flood light. You can also get a smart switch which allows you to pick between 3 light levels.
 

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Digital head trip

3 yrs old, $120. Works great for me. There is stuff out there that will eclipse this, but so does the price. When I ride behind my friend's bar mounted HID, I might as well shut my light off.
Night ride beam attracts bugs which attracts bats. Its wild to watch bats fly in front of you to eat bugs. Try to breathe through your nose for the same reason. Also, deer eyes reflecting back at you from the darkness. Huge almondine eyes if at an angle, bright yellow and round if direct.
 

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sasquatch2 said:
Anyone know what the diff is? looking on th' web, they are the same but LUME has a Xenon setup with more watt (20w?) for less $$.
Hmpf. Not sure, though I know that HID typically has some Xenon gas in the mix, but I thought you could get "xenon" bulbs that had filaments..... worth investigating. HID bulbs have no filament, like a flourescent tube.

AHA! Here's the deal:

"...some companies offer Xenon-filled Halogen filament bulbs..."

This is not the same, in fact nowhere near the same thing as the brightness from an HID light is derived from "energizing" the gas in the bulb, not electrical resistance in a filament....
 

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SwissBuster said:
Damn, it's the beginning of August and you're talking about the end of summer already? We're hardly half-way through.
Yeah..... I dread the time of year AFTER June 21st, start of summer or not, when the days lose 1-2 minutes of daylight each day! This morning, the first 40 minutes of riding required my light, as "1st light" wasn't until about 5:50am! There was some cloud cover, but spotty.

I look at the riding season sort of in a bracketed way, with June 21 being at the "center" of the prime time of year, not the middle of summer 1.5 months later! IMO, "daylight savings time" should be abolished, being a 'morning person' and all. I cherish the "fall back" to "standard time" for the 'extra' hour of light in the a.m.
 

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SwissBuster said:
I love my lupine setup, but I'm not sure if they're available around the world. By German standards they have exceptional customer service.

Damn, it's the beginning of August and you're talking about the end of summer already? We're hardly half-way through.
If anyone is looking for the brightest - The Answer is lupine. Xenon Globe, 18 degree beam, 6000K color temperature long long burning time, blindingly bright!!!

Gretna bikes sell them as do lupine.de and too Canadian darkside-cycles.com

Trevor!
 

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I bought the LUME Lighting Strada HID setup as well. It is EXTREMELY bright and the company, I hear from fellow riders, really backs up their product. It's so bright that I can light up houses (from my deck) 80-100 yards away when their dogs bark and wake me up at night- stupid ******* owners :D I've only done this twice thus the light has been used twice :p

Anyway, I have not done any night riding and I'm not sure if I will but I can attest to the brightness- I got the slightly dispersed version, not the super focused version. I would not get the super focused version since this one is so bright. I would think that if it were any brighter, it would start to reflect off the ground.

Hmmm...I'm debating if I should keep this or sell it.
 

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Nite Rider

Some folks are into Nite Riders......here is a smoking sale on the HID setup...

http://www.jensonusa.com/store/product.aspx?i=LS707A07&sc=EM081104&x=y

If you want to lose some weight over that system with equal, if not better performance, then the Light & Motion Arc Li-Ion systems is the way to go:

http://www.bikelights.com/Products/arc_li_ion.htm

The best dealer prices I've found on L&M products are at: www.mtnhighcyclery.com. You'll need to email or call for a price quote as prices aren't listed on the web site.

--El Beastro
 
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