Author Topic: Brompton/Spanninga Solo rear dynolight - killing the standlight  (Read 1020 times)

Brompton/Spanninga Solo rear dynolight - killing the standlight
« on: November 01, 2019, 01:38:03 pm »
I recently got the dynolight kit for my Brompton, and am happy enough with it, bar a couple of minor niggles. The first is that I need to faff with the front light mount so that I can angle the light up a bit more, but more serious is the fact that the rear light (I gather it's a Spanninga Solo xds) doesn't have an obvious way to kill the standlight. For a bike that spends a fair amount of time on station platforms this is obviously suboptimal; is there any way to sort this that doesn't involve Kim-ish levels of electron-fettling and wizardry? The Spanninga documentation I could find was no great help.

Re: Brompton/Spanninga Solo rear dynolight - killing the standlight
« Reply #1 on: November 01, 2019, 01:53:42 pm »
The only non-hacky answer is to buy one of the alternative rear lights with a button to extinguish the standlight. The Brompton bracket is a standard 50mm fitting, so it should be straightforward.

Otherwise, whack a glove or something in front of it, and be prepared to mumble apologies at officious station staff.

(the rule exists because drivers are trained to treat an unknown light as an emergency stop signal. If your light isn't pointing towards the cab of a moving train then they have nothing to complain about it)

Re: Brompton/Spanninga Solo rear dynolight - killing the standlight
« Reply #2 on: November 01, 2019, 02:19:45 pm »
Yeah, I've heard mixed things about their longevity, so I may well resort to covering up for now and replacing as and when it goes. I'm not averse to a bit of hackery in principle, but the last time I used a soldering iron was probably decades ago, so there may be a skills deficit...

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Brompton/Spanninga Solo rear dynolight - killing the standlight
« Reply #3 on: November 01, 2019, 04:13:51 pm »
For a bike that spends a fair amount of time on station platforms this is obviously suboptimal; is there any way to sort this that doesn't involve Kim-ish levels of electron-fettling and wizardry? The Spanninga documentation I could find was no great help.

For reference, the Kim hack was to add a tilt switch in series with a low value resistor[1] across the supercapacitor, and mount the tilt switch (using hot glue[2]) so that it closed the circuit when the light was upside down.  The 'kickstand mode' first stage of the fold automagically causes the standlight to discharge over the course of a few seconds, with no need to compromise the waterproofing (which is harder to get right than electronics).


[1] I forget the value, but something in the 10Ω range.  Higher value means it takes longer to discharge.  Lower value means you can potentially lose more of your accumulated charge to road rattle.
[2] If you've got one of these open in the presence of a glue gun, it probably makes sense to blob glue liberally around the supercapacitor to take some of the mechanical stress off the legs.  The spot welds seem prone to vibration failure.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Brompton/Spanninga Solo rear dynolight - killing the standlight
« Reply #4 on: November 01, 2019, 05:23:53 pm »
Yes, I remember you mentioning the tilt switch and thinking it was a clever hack. Will have to see if I can convince an electronics-competent mate to show me how to do it...

Re: Brompton/Spanninga Solo rear dynolight - killing the standlight
« Reply #5 on: November 18, 2019, 07:20:27 pm »
.....the Kim hack was to add a tilt switch...across the supercapacitor, ...using hot glue[2]) ....
[2] If you've got one of these open in the presence of a glue gun, it probably makes sense to blob glue liberally around the supercapacitor to take some of the mechanical stress off the legs.  The spot welds seem prone to vibration failure.
Presumably, if you don't have a glue gun, some sugru would do OK.

Re: Brompton/Spanninga Solo rear dynolight - killing the standlight
« Reply #6 on: November 18, 2019, 07:39:24 pm »
If you have a Brompton without  a  rear-rack (i.e an  L-type in old English) the following comparison video shows why the 2C lamp might be better than the Solo for those:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=68&v=SFjIf4ZtO40&feature=emb_title
You can 'see' the Solo line disappear rather early presumably because obscured by mudguard /brake

The dynamo 2C is only 12 pounds.
https://brilliantbikes.co.uk/-brompton-hub-dynamo-lighting/3252-2c-dynamo-rear-light-by-busch-mueller.html

Re: Brompton/Spanninga Solo rear dynolight - killing the standlight
« Reply #7 on: November 18, 2019, 09:44:53 pm »
For a bike that spends a fair amount of time on station platforms this is obviously suboptimal
I've had a number of complaints from station staff. Fair enough really, but there's not too much I can do, not being as clever as Kim, other than change the light.

Given that it's specifically a commuting bike, you'd think that Brompton would address it and provide a switch.

Re: Brompton/Spanninga Solo rear dynolight - killing the standlight
« Reply #8 on: November 19, 2019, 02:04:41 pm »
The low tech solution would be some stick on velcro loops on the non-optical sides of the lamps and a black cover (cutup thick plastic bag?) with matching stickon hook velcro (or just a large section of hooked sew velcro with smaller loop section stuck in centre) to mask lamp in stations:

I had to do something like that with a red reelite 550..

Re: Brompton/Spanninga Solo rear dynolight - killing the standlight
« Reply #9 on: November 20, 2019, 05:23:34 pm »
.....the Kim hack was to add a tilt switch...across the supercapacitor, ...using hot glue[2]) ....
[2] If you've got one of these open in the presence of a glue gun, it probably makes sense to blob glue liberally around the supercapacitor to take some of the mechanical stress off the legs.  The spot welds seem prone to vibration failure.
Presumably, if you don't have a glue gun, some sugru would do OK.

I have a glue gun, but no soldering iron...

Does the 2C light have a discharge standlight capacitor button on the back? I can't find any clear photos, but the ones I've seen suggest it doesn't.

(For now I'm leaning towards the velcro solution)