Author Topic: Contingency Light  (Read 1136 times)

Diesel

  • or Richard
Contingency Light
« on: April 14, 2019, 04:37:27 pm »
I have an Exposure Strada for my main light and that should see me through - BUT given that lighting is so critical, I am thinking it would be wise to carry a contingency light as well.

I was thinking of something powered by 1 x AA battery - easy to obtain spare batteries if necessary, but haven't seen anything obvious. I used to have a Cateye light that took one AA which would have done but that died

Given that many lights are USB charged with internal battery, is it worth getting one of these instead with a run time of several hours - enough to get through one night. I'm cautious though as whilst I'll carry a battery pack, I want to avoid any need to mains charge anything in the event.

So any recommendations or thoughts?


Zed43

  • prefers UK hills over Dutch mountains
Re: Contingency Light
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2019, 04:48:40 pm »
I like the Lezyne Femto lights; they run on 2x CR2032 lithium cells which are nearly as ubiquitous as penlites. The front is adequate for legal reasons / to be seen, not for cycling at speed in the dark of night.

SPB

Re: Contingency Light
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2019, 05:00:40 pm »
I have a Moon Nova that takes a single AA, and also a Cateye HL-EL130 that takes two AAs.  I think they're both still available new, certainly the Moon is.

vorsprung

  • Opposites Attract
    • Audaxing
Re: Contingency Light
« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2019, 05:25:28 pm »
The rules are that you must carry two independent lighting systems.  You will have to demonstrate these at the sign in

Read the current rules yourself but it used to be the case that the rear light should run steady, not flashing when demonstrated

My spare front light is one I got from Aldi a couple of years ago.  It runs off 4xAAA.  I have a spare set of lithiums for it.  The rear spare is a smart R1.  I also have a headtorch
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Re: Contingency Light
« Reply #4 on: April 14, 2019, 06:31:40 pm »
Oh is that a new rule? There was no such rule in 2015.  I have a choice of backup lights I could bring so it's a non issue either way.  I usually have backup on rear but not front.

marcusjb

  • Full of bon courage.
    • Occasional wittering
Re: Contingency Light
« Reply #5 on: April 14, 2019, 06:59:05 pm »
The rules are that you must carry two independent lighting systems.  You will have to demonstrate these at the sign in

Read the current rules yourself but it used to be the case that the rear light should run steady, not flashing when demonstrated

My spare front light is one I got from Aldi a couple of years ago.  It runs off 4xAAA.  I have a spare set of lithiums for it.  The rear spare is a smart R1.  I also have a headtorch

I am not sure where the two independent systems comes from:

Article 8 of the regulations:

"Bikes must possess a lighting system powerful enough to be seen at a distance of 100 m from the front and 150 m from the rear. It must be securely and permanently fixed on the bike, even during daytime, and in working order at all times. Flashing LEDs at the rear are forbidden. Backup lighting systems are strongly recommended.
Lights must be turned on at all times during hours of darkness or other low-light conditions, whether the participant rides alone or in a group.
If the controllers stop a rider because of no lighting or insufficient lighting, they will not allow him or her to continue until the lighting failure has been repaired, unless he or she has emergency lighting. In this case he or she may ride to the next checkpoint."

So you do not have to carry backup - but it's a long wait until dawn if you do have a failure.

I have a headtorch that can do white or red and a stupid little clip on USB thing that can, again, do white or red.  Neither would see me riding very fast - but luckily the only failure I've ever had on my dyno light was a dodgy connector (and I now carry a spare).

Edited to add - this is the little emergency light:

https://www.decathlon.co.uk/cl-500-front-rear-usb-red-id_8542475.html

Looks like the mount has been redesigned since I bought mine.
Right! What's next?

Ooooh. That sounds like a daft idea.  I am in!

Diesel

  • or Richard
Re: Contingency Light
« Reply #6 on: April 14, 2019, 07:50:54 pm »
Thanks

I've already got a Lezyne Femto front light for emergency to be seen by, but want something I could continue riding with.

The Cateye HL-EL130 looks promising

" it's a long wait until dawn if you do have a failure" - well put, that's my thinking - to enable me to continue, if necessary at a slightly reduced pace.

vorsprung

  • Opposites Attract
    • Audaxing
Re: Contingency Light
« Reply #7 on: April 14, 2019, 08:43:08 pm »
Oh is that a new rule? There was no such rule in 2015.  I have a choice of backup lights I could bring so it's a non issue either way.  I usually have backup on rear but not front.

It's probably an old rule.  I rode last in 2011.  Thanks to Marcus for the exact quote from the rules :)
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frankly frankie

  • I kid you not
    • Fuchsiaphile
Re: Contingency Light
« Reply #8 on: April 15, 2019, 09:16:01 am »
Something like the Fenix LD12 runs off a single AA cell and offers plenty of brightness or plenty of runtime (but not both at once) provided you're not averse to a circular beam.  I use one of these as my touring front light - minimum weight and size, good for occasional use, multi-mode, weatherproof, can run all night if necessary.  It's very sturdy but weight including a lithium AA cell is 65g.
https://www.fenixtorch.co.uk/Shop/Fenix-Torches/LD-Series/13483-Fenix-LD12-2017.html
"This is a complex subject, with a need for more than one highlighter pen."

wilkyboy

  • "nick" by any other name
    • 16-inch wheels
Re: Contingency Light
« Reply #9 on: April 16, 2019, 11:24:38 pm »
I've already got a Lezyne Femto front light for emergency to be seen by, but want something I could continue riding with.

...

" it's a long wait until dawn if you do have a failure" - well put, that's my thinking - to enable me to continue, if necessary at a slightly reduced pace.

I had a dynamo fail on me at the weekend on a 300.  I always have a Femto rear light to give a gentle blink (they're not very bright) to remind cars behind that the big dynamo rear does not mean "motorbike".  But I added a Femto front as I passed Evans in Norwich.

It was a half-moon night, so about 5% sunlight reflected, and another 5% from the Femto meant I could see where the edges and centre of the road were, and I could tell where most pot holes were, too. 

I had a helmet light, but I knew that wouldn't last the five hours to home, so I used that only when absolutely necessary, like under trees.

It's a funny thing — we've become sooo used to having bright, bright lights on our bikes these days that we've forgotten what it used to be like.  The Femto + moon were just bright enough to guide the bike steadily home, and the helmet light really helped in the dark bits.  Reflective gilet and shoes meant I still looked like a cyclist.

Ironically, I had removed a spare helmet light from my Carradice the weekend before for a 200 completed in daylight.  If I had had the spare with me then I would have had just enough between the two to not require the Femto, and I also carry the little velcro strap specifically so that I can attach it to the bars to be legal (as legal as any battery lights in the UK at the moment, anyway), i.e. my helmet lights are my backup lights.

I got home fine.

Several lessons learnt, but the most useful being that when you don't have much choice then you really can get away with very little light and still be okay.
RRTY #7 done.  Need something else to do ... ah, welcome #8 8)

wilkyboy

  • "nick" by any other name
    • 16-inch wheels
Re: Contingency Light
« Reply #10 on: April 16, 2019, 11:29:00 pm »
I like the Lezyne Femto lights; they run on 2x CR2032 lithium cells which are nearly as ubiquitous as penlites. The front is adequate for legal reasons / to be seen, not for cycling at speed in the dark of night.

Thirty hours on solid is also pretty compelling.  For myself, I also carry several pairs of spare CR2032 cells, as they weigh nothing and take no space and fit in my rear Femto and all the Garmin sensors.
RRTY #7 done.  Need something else to do ... ah, welcome #8 8)

Re: Contingency Light
« Reply #11 on: April 17, 2019, 02:56:53 pm »
I have a spare battery front light so have decided to charge it up and will take on Friday's Easter Arrow.