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BICYCLE EQUIPMENT NOTE: Bicycle Lights

CHOICE magazine has a review of bike lights out. The review was conducted in-conjunction with Bicycle Victoria’s Ride On magazine.

A panel of 10 judges from the cycling community — including police, government, retailers, community groups and CHOICE — assessed the lights at night at a distance of 200m and also at 50m, with the lights angled at 45° (to simulate the bike approaching an intersection). The flash rate (where applicable) was also assessed.

Our test was conducted on a suburban road with a popular cycle path, and during the test several cyclists passed by with very weak bike lights (or none at all). You should check your bike lights periodically. If they’re looking a bit dim, change the batteries. Our test showed that all the lights were visible at both distances, but some clearly outshone the rest.

Further details of the test and the recommendations can be found at the CHOICE website. Some questions have now been raised about the validity of this survey, its limited nature and making good choices on lights.

I suggest that interested readers click through to the various discussions in the Bicycles Network Australia and other forums.

My choice of bike lights are Fenix L2D CE torches (updated November 20, 2008).  The link takes you to my owner review of same.  There is also now even better LEDs out.  Apparently the R2 module is better than the Q5.

Update June 3, 2008: A good discussion has started up in Bicycles Network Australia forums on another front light option, the Australian lights, Ay-Up, which I had planned to purchase before going with the Fenix torches. A second thread on the Ay-Ups can be found here.

May 28, 2008:I now have a copy of the full article which you can download in two parts.  Part 1 is available here and Part 2 is available here.

Personally in respect to the front lights I would not go with any of the suggestions given here and feel one can do with better with either UltraFire or Fenix torches or Dinotte lights. Observing riders on the road and bike paths (I ride a lot at night) I wouldn’t consider any of the front light options in this review as being suitable. Lights should make one be seen and to be there to see. Poor lights do neither well.

4 Responses to BICYCLE EQUIPMENT NOTE: Bicycle Lights

  1. Duncan March 2, 2010 at 12:44 AM #

    Have a good look the LEDLENSER range to be used with the Two Fish style lock blocks. They are really good torches with beam width control and some have strobe settings also. There are a lot of models but the MT7, M14, P7 & PT7 are all good.

  2. Duncan March 2, 2010 at 12:44 AM #

    Have a good look the LEDLENSER range to be used with the Two Fish style lock blocks. They are really good torches with beam width control and some have strobe settings also. There are a lot of models but the MT7, M14, P7 & PT7 are all good.

  3. Duncan March 2, 2010 at 8:44 AM #

    Have a good look the LEDLENSER range to be used with the Two Fish style lock blocks. They are really good torches with beam width control and some have strobe settings also. There are a lot of models but the MT7, M14, P7 & PT7 are all good.

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  1. Fenix Digital L2D Black Premium Q5 Torch Owner Review | Aushiker: Bicycling & Hiking in Western Australia - November 20, 2008

    […] Discussion of other lightening options can be found in my Bike Lights Review posting. […]

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