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Has anybody tried this headlamp ?(7 posts)

Has anybody tried this headlamp ?PeterRider
Jan 26, 2003 3:53 PM

Comparing to Nitelite products, it looks quite lightweight... and reasonably priced. Has anybody used this headlight ?


I meant Niterider products...PeterRider
Jan 26, 2003 3:56 PM
I meant Niterider products...kgrider
Jan 27, 2003 9:37 AM
For $53 bucks it sounds like a risk worth my opinion.
What kind of Battery?B2
Jan 27, 2003 11:11 AM
I didn't see where it spec'd the type of battery. NiMh seems to be more reliable than NiCads as near as I can tell. The 3.2Ah battery capacity seems a bit suspect. I wouldn't plan on doing any 2 hour rides at night.

Another thing to consider is the recharge time. I didn't see how long it takes to charge the battery on this one. If you ride multiple days in a row or you can only do your commute one way on a charge, then the charge time can be very important.

Good Luck,
Ya get watcha pay for....shawndoggy
Jan 27, 2003 12:53 PM
Do a search over at there's loads of good info (and of course the rabid "this is the best/I hate that" stuff too) regarding lighting systems.

But put simply, you get what you pay for. This system probably uses a sealed lead acid battery, the heaviest of the commonly used batteries (the others being NiMH and NiCD). The downsides of SLA batteries are: a) they are much heavier; b) cold reduces their run-time to a greater degree; and c) you have to be very careful not to run them down too far because running them to nothing will ruin the battery. I'm speaking from personal experience on all three points here. Then again, you can get 6 volt 4.5 amp hour batteries at home depot in the emergency lighting section for about $12+/-, so it isn't the end of the world if you kill one.

The other very cheap thing to come with one of these will be the charger. On a unit this inexpensive there will be none of the digital circuitry that the niteriders have to keep you from overcharging the battery. Charging a battery for too long will also fry the battery. The simple solution here is to set your charger up on a christmas-light type timer so that it turns off after the recommended charging period. A "smart" charger for an SLA battery (which won't be compatible with other battery types) will run you about $40 and will also charge the battery faster, then drop down to a "trickle" charge.

Finally, regardless of the battery's composition, a 3.2 A/h battery isn't going to last too long on the full 25 watts (I'd wager less than an hour, and maybe exactly an hour on 20W), and riding around with the 5 W only will do nothing for your ability to see, but will make you visible to cars, like on streets with street lights. In short you'll need a more powerful battery if you want to reliably ride at night where it is truly dark.

Personally, I've used several cheaper systems (one 12 watt singe beam helmet mount, one 20 watt dual beam bar mount, alone and in combination) over the last three years. I've determined that night riding is a viable option for me (don't mind the dark), and to get in any real training it's a must with a "real" job and a family. So I recently threw down for the niterider storm HID light which is truly amazing. Yep, over $300, but this morning I went out at 5:00 a.m. and returned (in the dark) at 6:40 a.m. and the light worked like a champ over a relatively rural unlighted route. It works so well that for the first time I feel like I can truly "see" in the dark rather than getting a wee bit of light to glimpse by.

Good luck and welcome to the dark side!

Thanks for the infoPeterRider
Jan 27, 2003 6:18 PM
re: Has anybody tried this headlamp ?Bobha8
Jan 27, 2003 6:48 PM
I bought one for my father-in-law, for Christmas. It last 45 minutes with both lights on it has a sla battery. It's not a bad light for commuting cause all you need is the 5 watts, but anything off road it would be useless for.