|anyone train at night||john de|
Mar 20, 2001 7:24 PM
|i was thinking of getting some good lights for my bike and riding at night cause its so cool and quiet..anyone recommend a certain light, im not sure if i should go all the way and get the lights with the bottle cage battery...|
|re: anyone train at night||Ping Pong|
Mar 21, 2001 1:06 AM
|In my experience, if you are going to ride on otherwise completely unlit roads you need 20 watts of light min. I used to have a 10W light and found that insufficient. Many of the lights are more suitable to off road, giving a wide floodlight effect. On the road with the higher speed you need one focussed beam pointing way ahead of you, and maybe another on the road surface just ahead of you.
Riding at night is a great feeling but you need to maintain a very high level of concentration on the road, especially at speed. Only ride familiar routes where you are fairly sure of the condition of the road surface. I would recommend it as a good way of adding variety to your training but it really does feel a bit too dangerous to me some-times - forget your HRM and computer! ( I go out at night in country lanes, maybe once a fortnight )
Think carefully about your rear lights too, maybe get a couple - I have one powerful constant and a flasher. Some argue that this sort of set up is confusing to motorists, I on the other hand would happily ride along looking like a Xmas tree if I could.
Mar 21, 2001 4:22 AM
|I disagree with some of the other posters remarks. I have a digital Pro-6 from Niterider. Have the ability of 6,10,15 watts from one lamp. That is all you really need.
I'm assuming you want to ride on the road, your post doesn't specify. In the Fall we ride a lot at night to train for Cross season. You're going to want a good long lasting battery. Most lights on full blast are only going to give you 1-1.5 hours of light. Learn to conserve your juice. I ride a lot on the 6 and 10 watt settings and use the 15 for really dark areas. I live in a very rural area, so there are not many street lights. A good full moon and cloudless night help out a lot, but not always needed.
You are most definitely going to want a LED rear light. I wouldn't recommend riding without one. Also get a vest or jersey or something made of Illuminate material. It beats out any reflector any day.
You definitely want to get a bottle cage light. The handlebar mounted, D cell lights are useless.
|I sometimes come in after dark ...||Humma Hah|
Mar 21, 2001 5:17 PM
|... Especially this time of year. I generally leave my LED-blinker on the back (it weighs about an ounce, and I use it all week, commuting). I take the 6W headlight off the bars for most day rides, but if there's a chance I might come back after dark, I toss it in the pack. For a training ride, weight is really not a problem, and I sometimes toss a few extra items in the pack anyway (it feels so good when I go to an event and can ride lighter). |
I don't deliberately train after dark, but I get a lot more riding done if I don't have to worry about remaining daylight.
|I sometimes come in after dark ...||donalson|
Mar 25, 2001 1:23 PM
|well i've not yet got to go on a traning ride...
but i've yet to ride my bike during the day time...i got my road bike about 2 weeks ago. i bought the bike w/ intentions of it being my ride to work (i work graveyard), and getting fit...hopeing to race and do some fun rides once i'm used to biking agin (used to MTB a lot)
in my commutes to work and such i've noticed a few things,..blinky lights on the back of the bike make all the diferance...
I prefer handel bar mounted lights, they stay at a steady angle, and only move when you move the bars; i have a cygo light w/ the dual pitched beams and the rechargable battery (only prob is my wide beam is burrned out and the shop won't have em in till the end of the week) my other problem w/ em is i have profile bars so i hafta figure out a way to make a QR bar on the end to hold a front blinky light and the head lights (in the mean time i have em mounted on my helmat)...
if i was training at night i'd probly use this setup.
front bar...cygo light (dual bulb lights, ones small spread the others wide spread, each is 6.5V i belive)
Front bar...bliky light, (i have a white lensed w/ yellow lights) you can see it for a pretty good distinc.
Helmet...Single bulb 6v set up, (make sure it's light and that you have your helmat straps set up perfect so it dosen't start to creep forward), makes it so you can flash an oncoming car, a car pulling from a corner or something...and you can look around :)
Seat post...Red blinky light...
Camel bak...lots of reflective stuff on it and if you have an extra blinky light put one on there somewhere...can't be to carful w/ sharing w/ dumb cars
Shoes...Bright shoes w/ lots of reflective stuff on the back and sides
just my .02 if you plan on riding hard during the night...i'd prefer to start early when day is just braking...still nice and cool but you can see other than where you point
|Not yet, but on some doubles||Dog|
Mar 23, 2001 5:43 AM
|Frequently doubles start in the early morning hours, and good lighting is necessary.
I rode one that started in Victorville, Ca., in the middle of the desert, around 4 a.m. Since it was late October, sunrise wasn't until around 7. There was no moon, and I'd never been on these roads before. It was absolutely dark. I mean, if not for your lights, you couldn't see your hand in front of your face.
I used a Cygolight 2 lamp system, with a rechargeable battery pack that hangs over your top tube by a soft cloth and velcro (thus not using up one of your bottle cages). It works great, as one beam is long an narrow, and the other short and wide. You can use either or both at once. So, for slower areas, only the wide beam; for blasting down hills, both together. Plus, this one has the ability to pan the light head a little from side to side if there is a road sign or something you need to see. Using only one beam, of course, saves the battery. At 18 mph, most of the time this was just fine. I never lack for sufficient lighting with this one.
Soon, however, due to the types of events I am going to be doing, I'll need to find something that works all night long, is reliable, and not too heavy at the same time. I'm still investigating, myself. Sooner or later I'll have to train at night, as I'll need to be doing some 24 hour continuous training rides.
For the most part, it scares me to death to ride at night. There are so many things that can go wrong: cars running you over, animals running in front of you, debris in the road, potholes, running off the road... Good lights definitely help, but the bottom line is that I would avoid it if possible. But then, maybe I'm chicken.
|Riders in the Night ...||Breck|
Mar 26, 2001 6:11 PM
|"Wake! For the Sun, who scatter'd into flight |
The Stars before him from the Field of Night,
Drives Night along with them from Heav'n
The Sultan's Turret with a Shaft of Light." ...
- opening lines the Fifth edition of:
The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam from ~ 1100 A.D.
-- rendered by Edward Fitzgerald 1859-1879.
First off tail lights are a must. The flashing LED strobe type lights are the standard choice powered by two "AA" batts or less. From that initial point the bar and helmet lights boil mainly down to perceived use and pocket book. If one is starting in the morning as sun up approaches the needs are less. Riding in and around bright street lights require less see ahead road light. Short evening rides beginning before sun down and ending soon after require little monies to be spent for adequate lighting.
Longer true night rides on the not so well lit out skirts of the city and back country mountain roads with no lighting atall is more my experience and offer the following .....
For simplicity and money savings 4 capacity C-cell bike lights of ~5 watts are my favorite. Can be used on the bar and will make a helmet light too by using the cut to length tacky backed Velcro strip loop side onto the light and hooked side onto the helmet, or reverse. Works great with smaller rectangular shaped lights, easy on and easy off the helmet; no straps required.
For the flash light battery type bar and helmet lights, re-chargeable Ni-Cads in place of one-time use alkalines (a negligible ~ 5% loss in volts ) can be used and fully charged up spares can be carried in the jersey pockets. Always carry spares and in the city can change out the batts under a street light when needed. A small mag type "AA" cell light that can be held between the teeth will prove useful for non lit and back country roads to change out batts, check the bike, etc.
For real power you may want to consider a water bottle battery powered dual light ( my pick being Nitesun Team Issue ) and a separate ~10 watt stick in the jersey pocket battery helmet light to look around you on the road and almost a necessity for true single track trail style MTB night rights with sharp twists and turns, rocks, rutts, etc. to pick your line thru.
The approx. 10 watt flood/ 20 watt spot dual beam handle bar light combos with water bottle battery such as the Nightsun, etc., are really nice and give you the trade off between long run rate up to three or four hours with the 10 watt flood, and short term bright long range 20 watt spotlight when you need it. They are designed to be run singularly the 10 watt flood most of the time; kikk in the 20 watt high beam when needed; combined out put 30 watts ( for comparison auto beams are typically 55 watts max DOT.) Figure about two and a half to three hours the first ride regardless the mfg. claims as you will be using the bright beam a lot before you settle down into relaxed night riding. Much like your first Scuba dive if you have ever done it. That hour tank only lasts 30 minutes the first time out. You will learn based on your ride time how to meter out the watts so as to get home under light power. Don't forget to plug in the re-charger sooner than later.
Helmet lights are typically ten watt floods and are best served with their own separate re-chargeable batt pack to stick in the rear jersey pocket. The re-chargeable ones like Nightsun are typically two and a half hour straight run time but you can turn on the helmet light as needed and so not run it full time, and a great back up to get home. A roundish style helmet typically works best with the head lights come with the sweat band type helmet strap. One may dedicate a helmet to this light and do away with the strap or what ever by again using heavy duty Velcro, or small nuts and bolts, rubber washers, etc. to "permanently" affix the light onto the dedicated helmet. Of course most will opt to use the standard sweat band s
|Riders in the Night ... continued||Breck|
Mar 26, 2001 6:19 PM
|... Of course most will opt to use the standard sweat band style elastic loop type fastener or what ever comes with the light. |
One truly nice thing about high output bar lights is that the 20 watt or so high beam will cause the oncoming motorist on two lane roads to dim his/ her lights as the glare of on-coming high beams will temporarily blind you as your night vision is trying to deal with your own head light out put to see the near and far road ahead, etc. Clear lens or light yellow tint on the Oakley riding frames, or your pick, is a must of course. A cheap clear plastic hardware store protective lens typically bought for use with power equipment will do also.
Compared to day light riding, night time riding brings out additional dangers and solo night riding in some areas is not advisable as you must know. Always try and take a friend if you can. Cell phones are advisable and let your wife, etc. know your route and approx. return time. Be careful, but do it if you are adventurous or training demands.
Have spent many enjoyable hours night time bike riding both city and mountain back country both road and trail; in groups and solo. Each year in the Fall we up here near Julian in San Diego County do a 60 mile loosely organized desert moon light ride on the week end of the full moon down to Octillo off Interstate 8.
We start in un-attached groups or singly near sun down and stop at Butterfield Ranch to re-group and meet old friends come for the ride. It can be a regular party there with all ages, all types of bikes including road, mountain, tandems, recumbents, etc. Then over Sweeny Pass getting to Octillo about mid night.
The full moon is so bright in the clear cool desert night that one may ride with the light off on the long Imperial County flats leading into Octillo populated only with bikers and the occasional car or van sag support some use. It's truly eerie at times seeing the tandems with their beacon type strobe type lights going off every few seconds as if giant alien lightening bugs along the highway come to check us out.
Sandwiches by Dave of Julian Pie Company at the end; put the seven or more bikes in the trailer pulled by Bob's Five Liter Ford Van we all cram into and the long ride home getting in at three AM. The Collies barking and the geese making a ruckus to greet you as their big webbed feet pick up the van long before the dogs hear it on this remote back country mountain road. Off to bed and wait another year for this wonderful event held during the full moon. Join us next November if you can.
|jesus that was long||john de|
Mar 27, 2001 2:58 PM
|i wish i could go but im on the east coast, sounds like alot of fun...hella fun (west coast expression i cant stand)....i decided not to ride at night for now and my reasess when it becomes summer (its cold)...i guess you like to write|
|jesus that was long||john de|
Mar 27, 2001 2:58 PM
|i wish i could go but im on the east coast, sounds like alot of fun...hella fun (west coast expression i cant stand)....i decided not to ride at night for now and will reasess when it becomes summer (its cold)...i guess you like to write|| |