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Thread: Best current budget light ?

  1. #1
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Best current budget light ?

    I don't follow bike lights much so I'm asking... Friend at work want to set his family bikes up with lights for night riding. Will be on-street as well as off-road.
    I'm guessing minimum of 250-300 lumen, not much more. He's not a die-hard biker, just a casual pedal through the woods. He is fine with ordering from China. Ok with 18650 though he doesn't have a charger for them.

    Want to spend Max of $30 each. ( Please, $30, no more. Don't go "It's only $35.)

    What's regarded as the best around these days that fits this ?

    Thanks.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Best current budget light ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay R View Post
    I don't follow bike lights much so I'm asking... Friend at work want to set his family bikes up with lights for night riding. Will be on-street as well as off-road.
    I'm guessing minimum of 250-300 lumen, not much more. He's not a die-hard biker, just a casual pedal through the woods. He is fine with ordering from China. Ok with 18650 though he doesn't have a charger for them.

    Want to spend Max of $30 each. ( Please, $30, no more. Don't go "It's only $35.)

    I've been using the same 2 (front and rear) Cateye lites for over 5 years with no problems. I don't know the lumens but the front lite will lite up a stop sign 2 blocks away. There are many models of this brand; the models I use are so old they are no longer available.


    I also use a Blitzu on my downtube for extra visibility.

    What's regarded as the best around these days that fits this ?

    Thanks.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Best current budget light ?

    Something I'm using now that works really well is an Eagle Eye X2R with with a cheap rubber mount. Total cost was $16 for the light, $3 for the mount and $15 for two Sanyo NCR18650GA batteries. The total comes in under $30 when you consider there are two batteries.

    The Eagle Eye has a micro USB port to charge the battery so your friend wouldn't even need to buy a charger.

    The only problem with this setup is that I live in the north central U.S. which gets very cold in winter. Then the rubber mount gets too stiff to insert the light. Your profile says you're in Bracknell, which very rarely would get that cold. (I've visited Bracknell a couple times BTW.)

    You could do something very similar with a Convoy S2+ instead of the Eagle Eye. The Convoy has many more choices as to tint, output, etc. but lacks the charging port. Also, if I had it to do over again I'd spend just a couple dollars more and buy protected batteries to avoid over discharge and other problems (it would still come in at your $30 mark). This is my first venture into the LiIon world and I'm still a little skittish about them.

  4. #4
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: Best current budget light ?

    I did suggest a regular flashlight on a mount but I think he was concerned that there wouldn't be enough spill for riding through unlit areas. He was looking at those bike 'triple' led lights of which there are a large number of generic ones around. With those you get a throw reflector and a flood so it's a bit more useful in the woods.

    (If you come back to Bracknell, you won't recognise it. They just spent £50 million on the town centre and it's changed from a dump to quite a nice place.)
    Last edited by Jay R; 11-08-2017 at 10:49 AM.

  5. #5
    Flashaholic angerdan's Avatar
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    Lightbulb Re: Best current budget light ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay R View Post
    Friend at work want to set his family bikes up with lights for night riding.
    Will be on-street as well as off-road.
    I'm guessing minimum of 250-300 lumen, not much more.
    Want to spend Max of $30 each (Please, $30, no more. Don't go "It's only $35)
    What's regarded as the best around these days that fits this ?
    The budget is enough for one of these three solutions:

    1. amazon.co.uk/dp/B01N7JW9FI/
      .
    2. ebay.co.uk/itm/Moon-Gemini-Front-Bike-Cycle-LED-Light-USB-80-Lumens/112119940143
      ebay.co.uk/itm/Moon-Gemini-Rear-Bike-Cycle-LED-Light-USB-30-Lumens/122293850424

      .
    3. banggood.com/XANES-SFL04-750LM-T6-LED-German-Standard-Smart-Induction-Bicycle-Light-IPX4-USB-Rechargeable-Large-F-p-1217023.html
      banggood.com/46-Modes-USB-Rechargeable-Bike-Bicycle-Cycling-Tail-Rear-Safety-Warning-Light-High-Low-Beam-Flash-p-1173432.html


    That is enough for beeing seen even at bright daylight. For offroad use $30 is a very small budget, but a used Nextorch B10 will do it.
    For more recommendations to bikelight sets below $30 in UK, go to:
    bikeforums.net/electronics-lighting-gadgets/1126984-recommendations-lights.html
    Last edited by angerdan; 11-09-2017 at 09:44 AM.

  6. #6
    Flashaholic* Keitho's Avatar
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    Default Re: Best current budget light ?

    I've had good luck with Chinese "Shenkey" brand lights--they come with a helmet and handlebar mount. My wife uses them every day for bike commuting on roads. For real dark (dirt roads, gravel trails), I'd recommend one on the handlebar, one on the helmet. My guess at out-the-front (actual) lumens is about 600. The last time we got them in the US, they were about $20, and I think something equivalent is available on Amazon uk. USB recharge, relatively weatherproof.

    (For real technical MTB, I'd recommend at least a total of 2000 actual lumens, and a larger budget than $35).

    Good luck!

  7. #7

    Default Re: Best current budget light ?

    I've found Xanes SFL lights pretty decent. This one is a slightly augmented version in light output and battery power than their previous models:
    https://www.banggood.com/XANES-SFL04...p-1217023.html
    Fits in your budget too.

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