New posts

Lights. How FN bright and why the F do they flash?

March 13, 2014, 5:01 a.m.
Posts: 12636
Joined: Jan. 27, 2003

Reflective clothing is good but does not light up unless a headlight is reflecting back. So no help in a rear view mirror or for cross traffic. You need both. The reasonable rule for lights is if the light is as blinding as a car headlight, set it steady. If it's a lame teeny LED that would be lost in a sea of car headlights on steady then set it to flash. If there are many many street, store and car lights set the light to flash to be noticed. On a side street that is poorly lit and there are few other lights steady is good.

Yeah I agree but on a city street at night there is ambient light washing over everything so reflective stuff still lights up in any direction. When viewing cyclists from inside a car I've noticed it's always the people in reflective clothing that are the most visible. People in dark jeans and a hoodie with a blinkie are barely there in comparison. While you're at it sure throw a couple of blinkers on your bike but I don't see any reason why they have to be the brightness of a small star.

www.natooke.com

March 13, 2014, 8:47 a.m.
Posts: 0
Joined: Jan. 28, 2005

What do you guys this about this?
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/embrooke/blaze-bike-light

Technically illegal under the BCMVA, I believe, and rightfully so.

Mighty Riders
On The Rivet Cyclewear
Vallie Components
Novex Clean Delivery Solutions

March 17, 2014, 7:53 a.m.
Posts: 14006
Joined: Feb. 19, 2003

Saw these on Shark Tank, pretty cool use of LED programming.
http://revolights.com/pages/media/

March 20, 2014, 12:37 p.m.
Posts: 5731
Joined: June 24, 2003

Yeah I agree but on a city street at night there is ambient light washing over everything so reflective stuff still lights up in any direction.

I don't think that is possible. You need the illuminating light near eye level so that the light reflects off the object and back to your eye. You will get some sort of glow from side lit reflective things but not that much. The only thing that stands out in lots of ambient light is a light on the bike brighter than the ambient and brighter or close to the car headlights that you compete with for visibility.

There are some really awesome reflective fabrics out there now. Sugoi has shoe covers that are incredible. Because of the surface of those fabrics they might actually reflect some side light in other than straight back to the source direction.

Some manufacturer did a neat video of a pack of runners at night. It demonstrated that bright colours were not particularly more effective than dark but that the reflective fabric was outstanding. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3u-HmsfsPRY[HTML_REMOVED]feature=player_embedded[HTML_REMOVED]list=PL5D845E20CB1E2462

Debate? Bikes are made for riding not pushing.

Nov. 14, 2014, 6:58 a.m.
Posts: 12636
Joined: Jan. 27, 2003

I don't think that is possible. You need the illuminating light near eye level so that the light reflects off the object and back to your eye.

I think the light hitting at an angle still reflects some back to eye level. Either way some of these front lights are just way too much.

The only reason I can think of why you should have a super bright blinky light is because you want to blow through intersections with impunity assuming everyone can see you instead of approaching them cautiously. These kind of cyclists generally look straight ahead at all times, make hand signals and turn without looking, and are generally more focused on their rights and how people in cars aren't acting in according to them and make statements like: "I need a light this bright because everyone driving is too stupid."

In my experience it's much better to ride like you're invisible while taking steps to be visible without being obnoxious about it. Keep your head on a swivel, scan everywhere, be aware of the vehicles around you on the road and look for clues as to what they're going to do next. Look far ahead down the road. Don't insist on riding places that aren't safe. Simply knowing what's going on around you is worth a lot more than a handlebar mounted laser.

www.natooke.com

Nov. 23, 2014, 10:08 p.m.
Posts: 333
Joined: Dec. 21, 2008

My survival strategy for staying alive on the road is to make myself as visible as possible but assume that drivers still won't see me. When it is dark I ride with a very bright light on my helmet and a blinky light on the bars and seat post. The blinkies stay on during the day. I do make an effort not to blind people but the primary objective is to be seen. Has worked for me for the last 30 years.

Nov. 27, 2014, 11 a.m.
Posts: 256
Joined: Jan. 8, 2013

The only reason I can think of why you should have a super bright blinky light is because you want to blow through intersections with impunity assuming everyone can see you instead of approaching them cautiously. These kind of cyclists generally look straight ahead at all times, make hand signals and turn without looking, and are generally more focused on their rights and how people in cars aren't acting in according to them and make statements like: "I need a light this bright because everyone driving is too stupid."

In my experience it's much better to ride like you're invisible while taking steps to be visible without being obnoxious about it. Keep your head on a swivel, scan everywhere, be aware of the vehicles around you on the road and look for clues as to what they're going to do next. Look far ahead down the road. Don't insist on riding places that aren't safe. Simply knowing what's going on around you is worth a lot more than a handlebar mounted laser.

How can paragraph #2 be so right on every single point, and paragraph #1 be so wrong? When it's very rainy, dark and busy (monday was the worst), my usually-uneventful commute becomes a real exercise in survival. I'm running lots of medium-strength blinkies and high-vis-wear, but I'm considering adding a really bright light for those evenings. It's not "everyone driving is too stupid" but I only need three people to almost-hit me to make me say WTF. Sorry to the people annoyed by the light, but those three people ruined it for you all…the lights cater to the lowest common denominator because it only takes one car to kill me. /rant over

Nov. 27, 2014, 11:18 a.m.
Posts: 9747
Joined: Nov. 20, 2002

just turn off the super bright blinky if your on a two way bike lane.

Nov. 27, 2014, 11:24 a.m.
Posts: 256
Joined: Jan. 8, 2013

just turn off the super bright blinky if your on a two way bike lane.

fair enough.

Nov. 28, 2014, 4:36 a.m.
Posts: 12636
Joined: Jan. 27, 2003

How can paragraph #2 be so right on every single point, and paragraph #1 be so wrong? When it's very rainy, dark and busy (monday was the worst), my usually-uneventful commute becomes a real exercise in survival. I'm running lots of medium-strength blinkies and high-vis-wear, but I'm considering adding a really bright light for those evenings. It's not "everyone driving is too stupid" but I only need three people to almost-hit me to make me say WTF. Sorry to the people annoyed by the light, but those three people ruined it for you all…the lights cater to the lowest common denominator because it only takes one car to kill me. /rant over

I find many of these "almost hit me" stories to be overly dramatic. The only situation you can't control on a bike is being hit from behind but thankfully that's the rarest of all bicycle/car collisions.
The most common are cars turning into cyclists from the right or the left and while the car was technically at fault the cyclist was still a dumbass for assuming the car could see them and crossing their intended line.
How do you go through green lights, roundabouts and stop signs where you have right of way? If the answer is full speed ahead without slowing down or looking to the right and left and ahead for cars turning then you're doing it wrong.

www.natooke.com

Nov. 28, 2014, 3:58 p.m.
Posts: 256
Joined: Jan. 8, 2013

The cocky "it-can't-happen-to-me" attitude is not healthy.

The most common are cars turning into cyclists from the right or the left and while the car was technically at fault the cyclist was still a dumbass for assuming the car could see them and crossing their intended line.

What? If a cyclist gets hit from the side, they are a dumbass? Sometimes, but not automatically! If a car is stopped at a side street or driveway, the cyclist sees him stopped, and continues past, and suddenly the car moves forward… "holy shit I didn't see you!"…then the cyclist is the dumbass? Should he stop for every waiting car and get written authorization to proceed?

How do you go through green lights, roundabouts and stop signs where you have right of way? If the answer is full speed ahead without slowing down or looking to the right and left and ahead for cars turning then you're doing it wrong.

Nope. Head on a swivel, leave space, make eye contact. (Difficult when dark/raining so I slow down and leave more space.)

I spend a lot of time commuting in Vancouver (13500kms commuting in the past 3 yrs) and this is what I see-when it's raining. Some people just drive out onto the street without looking both ways carefully. I can't eliminate the risk and immobilize their cars, so I'm hoping a brighter light will make more of those people notice.

Nov. 28, 2014, 10:03 p.m.
Posts: 12636
Joined: Jan. 27, 2003

The cocky "it-can't-happen-to-me" attitude is not healthy.

In 15 years of commuting I've been hit five times. Motorists fault every time but I still could have avoided it.

Going on seven years without incident now but only because I trust no one. No written authorization needed, slow down and look at the driver. Then it's obvious what they will do.

www.natooke.com

Nov. 30, 2014, 8:41 p.m.
Posts: 333
Joined: Dec. 21, 2008

Almost got smoked At Still Creek and Douglas last week. Waiting to cross at the light. As soon as it turned green dumb ass driver flies past me and turns right in front of me while looking left the entire time. No way he saw me. I was paying attention and waited, otherwise would have been under his car. This was on a bright sunny day. He would not have noticed me no matter how many lights I had.

Dec. 2, 2014, 10:30 a.m.
Posts: 26
Joined: Aug. 6, 2004

The last few weeks have been brutal for my commutes around the lower mainland.

Downtown seems to have the best in terms of everyone following the rules and generally looking out for one another.

The north shore is the worst by a large margin. No sooner do I cross over to the north shore its like everyone has the hate on for everyone else on the road.

Maybe its the fact that everyone is frustrated with the traffic congestion but when cars / trucks are cutting you off every few minutes, deliberately blocking the dedicated bike lanes "Capilano Road" or blowing stop signs while giving you the finger.

I was hit "slow moving" by a car pulling a U-turn on Cap road last week to avoid the grid lock down to the lions gate. The dude even had a baby in the back of the car. I was not hurt just knocked down but he bolted before I could even get a plate number.

That makes 5 hit an runs for me over the years. A nice new camera is on the way that will be now recording my commutes to and from work.

Dec. 2, 2014, 10:38 a.m.
Posts: 10077
Joined: Nov. 19, 2002

A nice new camera is on the way that will be now recording my commutes to and from work.

There is a bike commuter woman who lives in Maple Ridge that runs at least 2 and maybe more cameras (pointing both front and back). She posts incidents to G+ and has given footage that has resulted in charges of bad drivers by the RCMP a few times.

Edit to add example of her video and Youtube comments that are cross posted to G+:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k3SOcyTAj_c

Forum jump: