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Thread: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

  1. #31
    Flashaholic* znomit's Avatar
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    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by rice rocket View Post
    For those of you who have an aspherical lens for your flashlights, is there something we can coat the lens with to make it semi-frosted? Maybe even a spray paint? If you have a sandblaster, you could just blast a cheap $3 DX lens.
    Glad press'n'seal works ok and is removable.
    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...d.php?t=199140

  2. #32

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    A review of the summarized options (open for corrections, and editing).

    Daytime comparisons of these lights would be fantastic but I doubt anyone with have two of these to compare. So we will take pics of any of these in daytime action showing them near and far if possible. Another idea would be to photgraph them alongside a car's tailights with and without brake lights and signal lights to get an idea of brightness. Angle shots would laso be nice.

    The Dinotte 400L and the K-Lite are bright enough that their hot spot should be aimed at the ground maybe a car lenght back and let the top of the beam only, shine in motorists faces if directly behind. The power is to get a broad fan of light bright enough to carry a fair distance. The red spot on the ground also makes the cyclist in side view. Only the Nova Bull has appreciable direct side output other than from the patch of light thrown on the ground. Superstealths can be used, maybe even facing 45 degrees forward, as they are visible in daylight at the typical distances of intersections where you want to catch a driver's attention.

    Nova Bull
    If you don't have a 12-16 volt lighting system, the Nova Bull will not be a cheap option. It has eight modes, no bike seat post mounting system, though it looks easily adaptable to a rear rack. At $36-40 it may be a good deal for some. It has eight modes but they were not designed with a cyclist in mind so not the best according to one cyclist in a prior thread here. It does provide some side lighting. With three of the same LEDs as the Dinotte 140R at lower curent it has a more horizontal output of about the same intensity

    Dinotte 140L R
    The Dinotte 140LR appears to be a single Luxeon III Red-Orange driven at 1.4 A (about 4 W) and the output is likely close to 140 lumens after lens and normal heat losses. It is $120 without battery and charger, $150 with. Same LED as in 1 What'slight but beamier. More intense and beamier than Pe2er's.

    Dinotte 400L R
    Dinottte has a sale YMMV and this is likely a limited time offer so I'll state it is subject to change without notice.

    The 400L red tailight with one 2-cell battery and charger is just under $200, with a 4-cell battery and charger, just over $220, and with no charger or battery but you must own a Dinotte battery and charger (customer, presumably warranty reasons with non-Dinotte batteries) just under $145. Includes seat post mount. (Now if a friend has a dinotte and you can do a battery....)


    This is a two LED light. It has a 2.5 hour run time on two typical Li-Ion cells. This is about the consumption of Luxeon III Red Orange LEDs plus a driver. If that is what they are, the Luxeon II R/O are supposed to be about 190 lumens each before heat and lens losses, 380 total. They have the same thermal conductivity of 10 * C/W as the CREE XP-E Red-Orange, at 10 * C/W but with over twice the power consumption it runs hotter and will have about twice the loss in efficacy due to heat. Guessing 230-320 lumens out the back depending on temperature and how efficient the lens is and about 9.5 Watts power use. These LED's are discontinued by Phillips. Comes with a seat post mount. You can buy the headlight and tailight pair now for just under $344.


    Ktronik K-Lite Battery powered tail light:
    The Ktronik K-Lite battery powered kit is available in many forms at different prices (PM him). There is also a generator version. The battery version features his 20 mm ID light weight black anodized case with concentric status readout around the switch at the front (non output) end of the light or in remote switch. It uses 3 CREE XP-E Red-Orange bin ?. If it is the P2 Bin (67.2 lumen @350 mA bin), at max 700 mA, it has 1.9 X more output, or 128 lumens before losses. So 383 lumens total and 285-380 lumens depending on lens and temperature. It uses 58% as much power for 15% more light than the Dinotte 400L. If a less effective bin is used the differnece in output wil be less but the power use difference remains.

    Customizing:
    You can opt to use a buck puck or inexpensive 700 mA driver with or without modes and levels. A maxflex won't fit. If you use a Bflex in the K-Lite it has a 750 mA setting, not 700 mA. That will slightly overdrive the Red-Orange to about 2.4 Vf, and 6.7 more lumens each. The K-lite body looks up to handling the extra heat. The power use with Bflex at 750 mA is 6.2 watts and output is 300-400 lumens extrapolating the chart data. Half power (350 mA) is 150 lumens comparable output to the Dinotte 140LR.

    You may also order a completley built light from Ktronik directly PM him.

    Cutter's price for the K light kit with the Bflex is just under $190 US plus shipping. North American residents save by ordering the Bflex direct from Taskled. Going that route is about $172 plus shipping from Cutter. Exchange rates can change these prices daily. This does not include battery and charger.

    DIY:
    WE have the opportunity to design and build a light with side visibility like 1 what did. http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...d.php?t=264640

    The LuxeonIII is dead, and the latest RedOrange LED for the task is the CREE XP-E. Three XR-E Red-Orange P2's on a triple 20 mm MCPCB and 20 mm Lens, from Cutter is currently about $30 US plus shipping to the US. Driver, wire, cable, connector, case, heat sink, solder, Arctic Alumina and other supplies, extra. Adding a Bflex brings it to about $65. A Maxflex is another $5 and will need heat sinking. These are the best but not cheapest but offer great flexibily in setting up multi level outputs.

    Rice Rocket's P60 host and XP-C Drop in. The post gives the SKU and bits. Module <$9 from DX, host $13, extension $5 at lighthound there will be other sources & prices, 2 18650 Tenergys plus charger $25-30? Aspheric lens to sand until it glows from $0 if you have one to $5 from surplushed and DX in the middle. Say $35-40 with shipping. DX says 900 lumens at 1 A. CREE says XP-C R2 Red-orange has max current of 350 mA and 56 lumens. Even on half power likely 500 mA, it is overdriven. Two flash modes where it will be happier. It looks good close in compared to SBSF. Over 10 hour run times on 1 A constant so at least a week commuting on flash mode. But if size is as important, or more important than intensity, then two with modified bezel fitted with a say a 40 mm + aspheric might do it for about $70 sahring the charger and batteries.


    Anyone want to share their ideas or plans of past, present, or future builds/mods?


    PS I took so long doing this up we have other LED candiadtes and a prototype from 1 What preceding this post. Thanks Guys!
    Last edited by BrianMc; 04-26-2010 at 10:53 AM. Reason: Add PS.

  3. #33

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by rice rocket View Post
    For those of you who have an aspherical lens for your flashlights, is there something we can coat the lens with to make it semi-frosted? Maybe even a spray paint? If you have a sandblaster, you could just blast a cheap $3 DX lens. Then you can run almost any LED flashlight with a red emitter as a tail.
    DX has an adjustable aspheric and if defocused, you get a fairly difuse beam as wide as the adjustment allows. Not a bad approach.

    Quote Originally Posted by rice rocket View Post
    I currently have a Solarforce L2m w/ a Osram Diamond Dragon in red @ 1A (it's rated 160 some lumens @ 1.4A).
    Love to see it in action. (Day.)


    Quote Originally Posted by rice rocket View Post
    Luminus also has the SST-90 in red too, which is good to something silly like 800 lumens.
    I wonder what its lumens/watt look like at something less than the 5 A or whatever max it has. Another post it looks like.

  4. #34

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Found my spare 28mm DX optic, and sanded it with some 120 grit paper. Yeah, it's not ideal, but it allows for a good amount of dispersion. Sandblaster would be better. I took the pics w/o the bezel because I don't have the flat bezel in yet.

    I have no daytime shots, because it's not daytime... But I have a PB Superflash, so you guys can kinda get a feel for it comparatively. Mounted on a Fenix Bike Mount on my seat stay.

    With the bezel:


    Head on:


    Head on (underexposed):


    30 deg off axis:


    90 deg:


    And 90 deg w/o the frosty optic:

  5. #35

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    [QUOTE=rice rocket;3364212]Found my spare 28mm DX optic, and sanded it with some 120 grit paper. ...I have no daytime shots, because it's not daytime... But I have a PB Superflash, so you guys can kinda get a feel for it comparatively. Mounted on a Fenix Bike Mount on my seat stay. /QUOTE]

    NOW I get it. The PBSF is good as a reference except in daytime video it it's on flash mode. Good idea.

    The Red SST-90 would be good for someone who wants revenge on drivers who honk upset him at night 2 amp and 300 lumens to 6.5 and over 1000. The 79 lumens/watt is the efficacy of the XP-E at max currrent, and they are lots cheaper.

  6. #36

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by 1 what View Post
    As mentioned in one of my above posts I'd been working on another tail light and the 2 objectives were to have a larger light source area and higher output. .... I knew there was a reason I had a 14.4V and 4,400mAH battrey pack!
    Interesting ideas there. Looking forward to day shots. What about heat? The 1 watts can handle being sealed up?

  7. #37

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by BrianMc View Post
    NOW I get it. The PBSF is good as a reference except in daytime video it it's on flash mode. Good idea.
    Yeah, the optic is only there to protrude past the crown/bezel. I guess you could even use the Fenix dildo diffusers, if you want extra side lighting, but it looks ridiculous.



    I'm not sure how much visibility you're gonna get in the daytime in red. Even tail lights on cars from afar aren't really that great in the daytime. If you choose an emitter w/ a high wavelength and edge it towards orange, it might be more effective.

    Quote Originally Posted by BrianMc View Post
    The Red SST-90 would be good for someone who wants revenge on drivers who honk upset him at night 2 amp and 300 lumens to 6.5 and over 1000. The 79 lumens/watt is the efficacy of the XP-E at max currrent, and they are lots cheaper.
    Haha, with a remote switch? Not a bad idea.

  8. #38

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by rice rocket View Post
    Yeah, the optic is only there to protrude past the crown/bezel. I guess you could even use the Fenix dildo diffusers, if you want extra side lighting, but it looks ridiculous.
    You also grab light you want at say +/-60 degrees to shove it at out at +/- 80 degrees.

    Quote Originally Posted by rice rocket View Post
    I'm not sure how much visibility you're gonna get in the daytime in red. Even tail lights on cars from afar aren't really that great in the daytime. If you choose an emitter w/ a high wavelength and edge it towards orange, it might be more effective.
    I don't want tailights. I want BRAKE lights. Bright enough you turn them to a lower night setting to avoid law enforcement entanglements. And no I also have a yellow strobe so red isn't sacred. Blue is out. White is out. Green is OK but really weird.

    In the XR-E's the amber has a number of drawbacks compared to Red-orange, especially efficacy. The red-orange are also better than red that way. So they are not really red and come close to 100 lumens per watt at 350 mA. Maybe our eyes sensitivity to yellow outweigh the difference. Anybody knoew of data on our color acuity across the yellow red part of the spectrum? The yellow green vest shows better than the flourescent orange one.

    Anyone have equal output XP-E's with the same optics in amber, red-orange, and red? We'd have to assume the camera and our monitors didn't mess it up so it isn't as simple as photographing them and loading them up. You need to note differences and see if they turn up in the recording fairly accurately and report how they didn't hold true if they didn't.

    Quote Originally Posted by rice rocket View Post
    Haha, with a remote switch? Not a bad idea.
    The real advantage is their tremendous output. Almost all of it is within 60 degrees, 16 degrees is FWHM! Lazer like! Using them all the time at 1/6 max is a waste. Fortunately spreading a tight beam is WAY easier than tightening a wide one like the XP-G.

    6.5 amp at 2.2 Vf or something like that. Need short fat wires and very good battery connections and high discharge rate cells. Of course you could put three or four in series to get the battery voltage and discharge rates closer. At something like $40 each. 1 amp and 300 lumens to 6.5 and 3000! Can you see me NOW?
    Last edited by BrianMc; 04-25-2010 at 08:32 PM.

  9. #39
    Flashaholic* 1 what's Avatar
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    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    I'm about to get very busy for a couple of weeks so daytime photos might be some time off. I'll do some beside my car tail light when I get the chance.
    Re the heat.
    For the 3 led model the drive current is a square wave at 2 Hz with a 10% duty cycle and the forward current is 50% of max. They don't get hot at all.
    They are plenty bright enough and I was after a larger light source area as much as a bright light. It's very impressive how much brighter a larger light source looks at a distance.
    I'll look forward to catching up with you all in a couple of weeks and post photos then.

  10. #40
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    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by rice rocket View Post
    Found my spare 28mm DX optic, and sanded it with some 120 grit paper. Yeah, it's not ideal, but it allows for a good amount of dispersion. Sandblaster would be better. I took the pics w/o the bezel because I don't have the flat bezel in yet.

    I have no daytime shots, because it's not daytime... But I have a PB Superflash, so you guys can kinda get a feel for it comparatively. Mounted on a Fenix Bike Mount on my seat stay.

    With the bezel:


    I really like this. Simple, self-contained.

    Is there a red single XP-E flashlight like this on the market with a strobe mode?
    Easy enough to have a PB Superflash attached to the back of a helmet or something to complement a narrow-beam eyeburner for daylight visibility.
    Triple XP-E and XM-L headlamps/ bike lights.
    XP-G Modified PT Apex and EOS
    Custom Night Lightning iBlaast II

  11. #41

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by Offroad'Bent View Post
    I really like this. Simple, self-contained.

    Is there a red single XP-E flashlight like this on the market with a strobe mode?
    Easy enough to have a PB Superflash attached to the back of a helmet or something to complement a narrow-beam eyeburner for daylight visibility.
    Yeah. It has me thinking too.

    DX had a P60 drop in but I don't see it listed now.

    The PBSF helmet light is good at night. BUT.. unless my camera completely missed its flashes in the day, it wasn't doing what I hoped. I am running it ON. When 'ON' the whole body is lit long enough to be seen and not just the small flash so it is visually larger fitting 1 What's size matters concept also increasing the amount of light per second.

  12. #42

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by Offroad'Bent View Post
    I really like this. Simple, self-contained.

    Is there a red single XP-E flashlight like this on the market with a strobe mode?
    Easy enough to have a PB Superflash attached to the back of a helmet or something to complement a narrow-beam eyeburner for daylight visibility.
    DX has a XP-C drop-in for a P60 host, which is ~9 lumens less than the XP-E in top bin.

    SKU 26345.

    The host I have is a Solarforce L2m, designed for 1x(R)CR123A, but takes 18mm cells, allowing you to use Ultrafire XSL 18350's as well (or you can use the included extension tube and run a full 18650 if you want more runtime).

  13. #43
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    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by rice rocket View Post
    DX has a XP-C drop-in for a P60 host, which is ~9 lumens less than the XP-E in top bin.

    SKU 26345.

    The host I have is a Solarforce L2m, designed for 1x(R)CR123A, but takes 18mm cells, allowing you to use Ultrafire XSL 18350's as well (or you can use the included extension tube and run a full 18650 if you want more runtime).
    Wasn't there an "empty" host on DX for these things?
    Triple XP-E and XM-L headlamps/ bike lights.
    XP-G Modified PT Apex and EOS
    Custom Night Lightning iBlaast II

  14. #44

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Yep, in OP and SMO. But for $8.34, that's cheaper than buying the parts separately and soldering them together yourself. But if you really want to...

    $2.97, Reflector + "pill": SKU 3257
    $3.64, Red Cree LED: SKU 1776
    ~$3, pick your desired driver

  15. #45
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    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by 1 what View Post
    It's very impressive how much brighter a larger light source looks at a distance.
    That pretty much sums it up for me. I've thought about putting a pair of star-mounted emitters onto a slab of aluminum and using a piece of half inch thick acrylic that has pockets cut into it for the emitters then frosting the outside of the acrylic to disperse the light. This should produce a light with a wide dispersion pattern. Maybe a pair of red SST-90s powered by a TaskLED hipFlex (so that I can vary the output) drawing off of a 14.8VDC Li-Ion battery pack. I need a job that I can bike commute to!

    There's a guy who is local to me (Leopold Porkstacker on RoadBikeReview.com's forums) who rides during the day time with a tail light that he made himself with hand tools that uses a pair of cheap Chinese made 10W red LEDs that he bought from eBay. He powers them with a 1A buckpuck and a 14.8V Li-Ion battery. I haven't seen it in person but from the daytime pictures I've seen of it this thing is BRIGHT I think people have said that it will give a Dinotte 400L R a run for the money for less than half the cost.

  16. #46

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by PCC View Post
    That pretty much sums it up for me. .... I need a job that I can bike commute to!
    I am leaning that way too.

    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...6&postcount=12

    I have some cheap (2 for $10) plastic (light) halogen landscape 5" 'headlight bulbs' which put out a band of light hoizontal if mounted as intended. They are useless as light sources with very low lumens per watt, BUT they have those nice prisms at $5 a light. A CuLite (also MTBR DIY lights) might be a decent platform to blast some red LED light in to be spread around. They'd even be aero facing backwards. Two of those will make drivers wonder. Wondering is good you've crossed into the conscious part of the brain!

    Start short term with the Census tomorrow. It's been awhile. Bike commute!

    Quote Originally Posted by PCC View Post
    There's a guy who is local to me (Leopold Porkstacker ...it will give a Dinotte 400L R a run for the money for less than half the cost.
    I'll drop a PM invite to him. Read some of his posts.


    NOTE: Added Rice Rocket's DIY to list of options. with approximate cost and lumens. Here.
    Last edited by BrianMc; 04-26-2010 at 10:55 AM.

  17. #47
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    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by rice rocket View Post
    Yep, in OP and SMO. But for $8.34, that's cheaper than buying the parts separately and soldering them together yourself. But if you really want to...

    $2.97, Reflector + "pill": SKU 3257
    $3.64, Red Cree LED: SKU 1776
    ~$3, pick your desired driver
    It's not the P60 I'm thinking about, I'm happy with that drop-in.
    It's the flashlight body I'm looking for. Can you steer me to the SKU for a good body for this?
    Is it this one here: http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.24353?
    Last edited by Offroad'Bent; 04-26-2010 at 02:31 PM. Reason: Updated info
    Triple XP-E and XM-L headlamps/ bike lights.
    XP-G Modified PT Apex and EOS
    Custom Night Lightning iBlaast II

  18. #48

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by Offroad'Bent View Post
    It's not the P60 I'm thinking about, I'm happy with that drop-in.
    It's the flashlight body I'm looking for. Can you steer me to the SKU for a good body for this?
    Is it this one here: http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.24353?
    It is that one, but the tail that DX uses is 'counterfeit', FWIW. Not sure what the difference is myself, but that's what I heard on CPF. They're also not bored for 18mm cells, so you'd have to stick to 16340s or CR123As.

    If you want just the host, itc_shop has them, be sure to read the description about the 18mm cells though. They're based out of Hong Kong though, so support may take a while if you encounter issues. Sbflashlights has 'em for a little more, but Jason is really responsive and will assist you in usually minutes if you have any issues.

  19. #49
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    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Sorry to be dense here, but does the light run on one CR123A or two?
    I'm not sure of the difference between 16340 and CR123A.
    Triple XP-E and XM-L headlamps/ bike lights.
    XP-G Modified PT Apex and EOS
    Custom Night Lightning iBlaast II

  20. #50

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    I googled and found this host just to ballpark price:

    http://www.lighthound.com/Solarforce...ed_p_2982.html

    After DM51 ripped out links to sites on one theread, I wasn't sure this was kosher so I did not list. Here it is and DM51 can remove it - after you've read it. I'd guess there are others this was the first I opened. Presume it is right ID as it has the extension available as an associated link.
    Last edited by BrianMc; 04-26-2010 at 03:18 PM.

  21. #51

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Lighthound is a CPF sponsor, I don't think either would mind.

    Here's the 18mm version I was talking about: http://www.sbflashlights.com/Solarfo...09-L2m-p7.html

    What are the changes in the 2009 L2m?

    The 1x123 L2m body is bored to 18mm, meaning it can fit 18mm cells (18650 w/ ECR extender)

    A L2-ECR, 1xCR123 extension tube is included for use w/ 18650 cells.

    Host includes:
    Solarforce L2-CH Tactical Head
    Solarforce Battery Tube, fits 1x18650, 2xCR123, 2xRCR123
    Solarforce L2-S1 Reverse Click Tailcap
    L2-ECR Extension tube for 18650

  22. #52

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by BrianMc View Post
    The PBSF helmet light is good at night. BUT.. unless my camera completely missed its flashes in the day, it wasn't doing what I hoped. I am running it ON. When 'ON' the whole body is lit long enough to be seen and not just the small flash so it is visually larger fitting 1 What's size matters concept also increasing the amount of light per second.
    Backtracking on this thread a little...

    So you're saying you'd rather have it solidly on than flash? I disagree with this notion as being more visible; humans (and all animals) notice motion a lot better than just static images. "Size" does matter, but I'd reckon the same size, flashing, would be more eyecatching.

    Actually, more annoying is as well. My friend runs both a PB Superflash and a PB Spok, which is a single 5mm flasher. The visual dissonance created by a non-synchronized, non-sequential lighting up of the lights drew my attention involuntarily to his backside.

  23. #53

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by rice rocket View Post
    I'd reckon the same size, flashing, would be more eyecatching.
    In theory yes. IF it IS actually the same size when it flashes for long enough to be seen that size. In bright sunlight I think that flash is so short and the light isn't fully lit long enough to register "full size" on our retinas. Flash/Motion = attention? Definitely. But remember we are like the video camera: 30 frames per second look continuous to us. I think in daylight that energy saving pulse is a tad too short to work well. I also think the short duration of the on may reduce the apparent size of the light in the day. You don't get the same residual retinal imaging in the day.

    Also, the main part of the flash is quite directional hard to aim it for short and tall vehicles, ones straight behind, those toward the centerline of a wide lane about to pass, etc. ON solid the aiming isn't as critical the whole thing is glowing.

    Quote Originally Posted by rice rocket View Post
    Actually, more annoying is as well. My friend runs both a PB Superflash and a PB Spok, which is a single 5mm flasher. The visual dissonance created by a non-synchronized, non-sequential lighting up of the lights drew my attention involuntarily to his backside.
    I won't say a word. Just keep your feminine side to yourself, buster!

    I am ALL for annoying. I found the Swerves double dance really bugged me. I hated/liked it. Latent epilepsy? But the video of the PBST and the PTS indicated the PTS was tame. So the camera doesn't do either justice in flash mode IMHO. Drivers on the other hand, claimed not to have seen me with three PBSF's! I don't think there is a Driving School for the Blind here. The ANSI vest has been a good move. So I am not as concerned about not being seen at all. Too bad there wasn't a way to increase the on duty by double and leave the flash pattern otherwise intact. Each of us bets our lives and you gotta do what you gotta do until we come up with something better.

    Maybe I need to track down a moderatelly slow motion/high speed camera to rent to ferret this out. PB has had to have made SOME money on SBSF's maybe they would weigh in?
    Last edited by BrianMc; 04-26-2010 at 04:42 PM.

  24. #54
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    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by pe2er View Post
    ... From what I read here, they (the 90mm brakes) are worth the extra cost.
    Some new developments on the SA Brakes...
    Initially, the difference in stopping distance between the small and large drums was 5-6 meters. After finding this difference, he went to velomobiel.nl to install bigger brake drums. They found out that there was a defect in his (small) drum brakes. One of the brake pads (that normally provides 80% of the braking action) did not fit properly. After repair, the difference in brake distance from 34km/h reduced to only one meter. See the very scientific approach to brake distance measurement here.

  25. #55

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by BrianMc View Post
    Maybe I need to track down a moderatelly slow motion/high speed camera to rent to ferret this out. PB has had to have made SOME money on SBSF's maybe they would weigh in?
    You should probably just dress up a dummy on a propped up bike, and drive past it a couple times and see for yourself.

  26. #56
    Flashaholic pe2er's Avatar
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    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by BrianMc View Post
    ... I also think the short duration of the on may reduce the apparent size of the light in the day. You don't get the same residual retinal imaging in the day.

    Also, the main part of the flash is quite directional hard to aim it for short and tall vehicles, ones straight behind, those toward the centerline of a wide lane about to pass, etc. ON solid the aiming isn't as critical the whole thing is glowing.
    Here is a short comparison of the PBSF with the 1 Watt DX spotlight in daylight. PBSF on continuous and flashing. The camera is slightly offset to the left side. I Move around the PBSF to show the relatively narrow beam it casts.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CzbMk6-mK3Y

  27. #57

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by rice rocket View Post
    You should probably just dress up a dummy on a propped up bike, and drive past it a couple times and see for yourself.
    In the devil made me do it Department :

    Smart answer 1: I found it hard to be on the bike and driving by at the same time. OH! you mean a DIFFERENT dummy!

    Smart answer 2: I tried that, but he got run over!

    A tricky thing to set up. I didn't think I could find safe spots to video in the first place. Leaving the camera unattended, traffic screwing it up, that sort of thing. I hit on taping to AVOID a drive by and a mannekin. A Crash test dummy like Buster from Mythbusters, is out of my price range. A substitute strong enough to wear a helmet and vest on the bike standing in the middle of a street while you approach from different angles and maybe in different height vehicles is not that easy.

    BUT!

    I don't NEED no stinkin' dummy inflatable or otherwise.

    No, I only need the helmet at head height above the saddle, but not necessarily EXACTLY above the saddle. In can be on a stand that holds the bike upright, which is another issue. The ANSI vest on a hanger hung below the helmet maybe with jacket and a pillow inside the jacket to round the vest out a little. I can try different arrangements to get the best by my eyes. I was VERY lucky to hit on the school drive. All but unused on some evenings and weekends. Nice and wide.

    Some young drivers might still think it funny to hit the lighted bike standing in the street, though. Maybe a concrete block with warning markings either side to remove their sump should they act on thoughts of that sort.

    I can get ready tonight but it will be tomorrow night, soonest.

  28. #58

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by pe2er View Post
    Some new developments on the SA Brakes... After repair, the difference in brake distance from 34km/h reduced to only one meter.
    So when COLD the difference is minimal on small wheels.

    Untested and no conclusions possible:
    1. After repeated stops or slowing on a long descent
    - The larger more massive brakes should both hold more heat and cool better = perform better.

    You have no long downhills. You may not have any anticipated multiple close together stops to heat brakes up. In which case you won't gain much.

    2. On larger wheels turning at fewer RPM, the increased lever arm should allow more stopping power. The 70 mm work great on 20" wheels. On 700C, not very well by the reports I have heard. One brief ride of a bike from the showroom by a person with experience of the 70 mmm said it was an improvement. Not very scientific.
    Last edited by BrianMc; 04-27-2010 at 01:47 PM.

  29. #59

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by pe2er View Post
    Here is a short comparison of the PBSF with the 1 Watt DX spotlight in daylight.
    My first impression (other than the known beaminess), is that enlarged with two 1/2 watt lower LED's and a 1-3 Watt main LED, and twice the diameter and more floody main lens, and we'd have what we are looking for in a day blinkie. Oh, and a lower power night mode. Ultraflash, Superflashes bigger brother. Also Ultraflash Stealth for those who want a to match their carbon fiber bits. Larger, and hungrier, it could run two AA's.

    Planet Bike can PM me here to ask me to evaluate a prototype. Some sacrifices have to be made in the scientific pursuit of safer cycling!

    What they look like up close isn't necessarily what a driver sees approaching them in bright sun. Since my movie camera is not up to the task, I must recruit the human eyeball. I might talk Kathryn into helping as she has a vested interest in my hide.

    I would like to make a record of what I (we) see driving by a lights on a static bike with vest and helmet arranged similar to a rider. Maybe if I took a cell phone pic at every 50 ft (15 m) to mate with my comments at each distance, something could be learned.

    I can mass three SBSF's side by side. If they have slightly different pulse rates they will go in and out of synchrony. Might shed light on the size/blinking issue and solid on. I can also arrange a fan of three: one centered straight back, one aimed toward the center line and the other in between. The outer at 45 , 30, 22.5 degrees, and 15 degrees to determine which startegy works best.

    Any other ideas to add to the testing?

  30. #60
    Flashaholic
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Palgrave, Ontario Canada
    Posts
    223

    Default Re: Designing good daytime rear commuter lights

    Quote Originally Posted by rice rocket View Post
    Lighthound is a CPF sponsor, I don't think either would mind.

    Here's the 18mm version I was talking about: http://www.sbflashlights.com/Solarfo...09-L2m-p7.html
    OK, ordered the drop-in, host and rechargeable CR123As.
    I'll report back how it compares with the Superflash and Mars 4.0.
    Triple XP-E and XM-L headlamps/ bike lights.
    XP-G Modified PT Apex and EOS
    Custom Night Lightning iBlaast II

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