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Thread: Got a new electric bicycle - flashlight / holder recommendations?

  1. #1
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Got a new electric bicycle - flashlight / holder recommendations?

    My wife presented me with the most awesome gift ever: an electric assist bicycle from Panasonic (Timo S). It comes with a built in headlamp that runs from the main battery. You can run the headlamp without assist if you are low on power, but if the electrical system fails completely you are out of luck.

    I want a brighter light also for bad weather and if I need to cycle without the main battery. I notice there are many simple handlebar mounting lights available that can be charged by USB. Are these any good or should I just look at clipping one of my existing 18650 (or 2xAA) flashlights to the handlebar instead?

    If I clip an existing flashlight, I will use something like this:
    https://www.amazon.co.jp/gp/product/B074CFVFMC/

    Will it hold on or is it a waste of time?
    I would also appreciate recommendations for an additional tail light. The included one is a solar charging red blinker, rather weak.

    The usage case for my bicycle is mostly quick trips for now while I get used to cycling again, and eventually a 15km commute (each way).

    For now as a temporary measure I went to the ¥100 store (like a dollar store) and attached a 5 LED additional frontlight (4xAAA and garbage beam pattern but "follows the law" to let me get home if I can't use the stock headlamp) and a bright red blinker (2x CR2032 powered) to the rear.

  2. #2
    Flashaholic angerdan's Avatar
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    Lightbulb Cateye, Sigma or B&M

    Quote Originally Posted by zipplet View Post
    I want a brighter light also for bad weather and if I need to cycle without the main battery.
    I notice there are many simple handlebar mounting lights available that can be charged by USB.
    Are these any good or should I just look at clipping one of my existing 18650 (or 2xAA) flashlights to the handlebar instead?

    If I clip an existing flashlight, I will use something like this:
    amazon.co.jp/gp/product/B074CFVFMC/
    Will it hold on or is it a waste of time?

    I would also appreciate recommendations for an additional tail light. The included one is a solar charging red blinker, rather weak.
    The usage case for my bicycle is mostly quick trips for now while I get used to cycling again, and eventually a 15km commute (each way).
    How much are you willing to invest in a new light?
    I can recommend you cateye, since you live in the same country as the company:
    cateye.com/intl/products/detail/HL-AU230/
    cateye.com/intl/products/detail/TL-LD710K/
    https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_fro...AU230&_sacat=0
    https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_odk...22&_sacat=7294

    German manufacturers B&M and Sigma also have good AA battery lights:
    bumm.de/en/products/akku-scheinwerfer.html
    sigmasport.com/en/produkte/licht-systeme/
    https://www.ebay.com/sch/Cycling/729...cat=7294&rt=nc
    Last edited by angerdan; 01-02-2018 at 08:06 AM.

  3. #3
    Flashaholic* Keitho's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cateye, Sigma or B&M

    Congratulations on the new bike!

    For the taillight, like you, I like to use two when it is really dark--I don't want my only light to go out while riding without knowing it. For something sleek and multi-use, I use a Zebralight 502pr (red) headlamp on strobe mode. For a really functional year-round light, I use the Planet Bike Radbot (very nice flash mode and built-in reflector). Both run well on Eneloops: the Radbot for at least 6 hours (2xAAA) and the headlamp for at least 2 hours (1xAA).

    Best of luck, and stay safe!

  4. #4
    Moderator Alaric Darconville's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cateye, Sigma or B&M

    Nice! You can zip along with ease yet also get a little more exercise than you would if you were driving a car. Good for the environment, too!

    Quote Originally Posted by Keitho View Post
    For the taillight, like you, I like to use two when it is really dark--I don't want my only light to go out while riding without knowing it.
    Having two could be a good idea, since one could fail at any moment. I would try to mount them in either exactly side-by-side without a height difference, or stacked without any left/right variance. I would also not use extremely bright ones, as that may lead to misidentification of your bicycle as a motorcycle, and that can have serious consequences.

    For something sleek and multi-use, I use a Zebralight 502pr (red) headlamp on strobe mode.
    I used to think the strobing taillamp mode was a good idea, but now I'm more with the Germans on this: No flashing/strobing bicycle lamps. I started getting that way when I realized how annoying they are to me as a driver, and how they can make it harder to determine the speed and direction of the bicycle. Strobing lights on the rider itself are annoying, particularly because they move around with the rider's head. More chance for confusing drivers.

    And don't forget the full complement of reflectors!

  5. #5
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: Got a new electric bicycle - flashlight / holder recommendations?

    Thank you everyone for your kind comments! I'm really pleased to own this bike and I personally think that if more people tried out an ebike, they could replace a lot of motorcycles/mopeds typically used for shorter journeys. They also provide access to the roads for the partially handicapped/older people. Recently we had an article in Japanese newspapers saying that it is a life saving invention for older people who can cycle safely, but cannot handle hills. It allows them to remain mobile a little longer.

    My budget: I don't mind spending a decent amount for quality lighting - whether that be "official" bicycle lighting or flashlights mounted to the bike. Clearly for the rear light I need something designed for a bicycle as it must be red. Ideally I want to purchase from Amazon Japan or my bike dealer.

    I agree that a rear flashing light is annoying for drivers especially if bright (I was once a driver). The built in one is a solar charged one (replaceable NiMH cell) that is motion activated, and not too bright/annoying to traffic so I think it can stay. I'd like a static red light that makes me highly visible I think.

    I'm especially interested in lights that can use eneloops or 18650. For the rear, an additional light like the suggested Zebralight 502pr would be fantastic, but how do I mount it as it is a headlamp?

    For the front, agreed 100% that it is possible for my primary headlamp to fail especially if an emergency occurs with the electrical system *or* we have an earthquake/etc and I must rely on the bike without electrics, so that's another reason I want a secondary lamp in addition to desiring a brighter one for bad weather. It is rideable with the assist off, modern versions seem to be OK like that. I tried a few models and some of them with the electrics turned off, you could feel the motor resistance. The Panasonic ones feel smooth with the assist turned off.

    Regarding mounting of the extra front headlamp, the stock headlamp has a special mount below the basket, not handlebar mounted. So anything I mount on the top would be slightly offset, but I can try to keep it near the centre of the handlebars.

    I'll keep looking at options for the front headlight. More suggestions are welcome

  6. #6
    Flashaholic angerdan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Got a new electric bicycle - flashlight / holder recommendations?

    Headlight for AA/18650 cells:
    Fenix BC20 (4x AA)
    Fenic BC21 (1x 18650)
    Fenic BC30 (2x 18650)
    Fenix BT20 (AA)
    Nextorch B10 (4x AA)
    B&M Ixon IQ Premium (4x AA)

  7. #7
    Flashaholic* lucca brassi's Avatar
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    Default Re: Got a new electric bicycle - flashlight / holder recommendations?

    under seat ( look like hot balls ;-)) https://www.banggood.com/Cycling-Nig...r_warehouse=CN

    front (close and long light + a lot of juice ) https://www.banggood.com/Cree-L2-LED...r_warehouse=CN

    instead of rubber ring use cable ties

  8. #8
    Flashaholic* Keitho's Avatar
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    Default Re: Got a new electric bicycle - flashlight / holder recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by zipplet View Post
    For the rear, an additional light like the suggested Zebralight 502pr would be fantastic, but how do I mount it as it is a headlamp?
    The ZL comes with a silicone holder that attaches to a headband for head-lamp use. For use as a taillight, I removed the silicone holder from the headband, and used some zip ties to attach it to my seatpost. The lamp is so small and lightweight that secure mounting is easy--there are many ways it could be done.

    The lamp has adjustable brightness levels besides a strobe, and is a very wide floody beam. So, aiming the light isn't important--it will be visible from many angles.

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