Informal Survey about Blinky Lights

This topic contains 55 replies, has 31 voices, and was last updated by  Drewbacca 2 yrs, 7 mos.

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 56 total)
Author Posts
Author Posts


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 9:06am #

Do you one one?
Front / rear / both?
What brand / model(s)?
Where is it mounted / attached?
Use during daylight or dark only?

Thank you for your replies!


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 9:20am #

Planet bike Superflash, back, mounted on my helmet. I use it whenever it’s dark enough to be visible.
Since people are also posting about steady lights — I have a PrincetonTec Remix steady white light on my helmet in front, and a Dirk Strothmann red MagnicLight on my rear wheel.


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 9:32am #

Avenir Panorama (planet bike superflash ripoff) Tail light zip tied to my backpack light strap – Used at dusk or night only.

Avenir Panorama (planet bike superflash ripoff) head light zip tied to my backpack arm strap – Used at dusk or night only.

Knog blinder on my seatpost – Used when it’s dark or low light or on country roads.

Cygolite Metro 350 on handlebars- Used in Day light on flash (as needed), at night on solid.


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 9:47am #

Front: Planet Bike Blaze 0.5 watt blinking daylight only
300 lumen front light at dusk/dark on solid

Rear: Superflash mounted to helmet on blinking
no-name mounted to seatpost on solid
(both used in low light including grey days)

Ps. I also where a safety vest and have reflective tape on helmet, bags, etc. I am a dork you can not miss!


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 9:49am #

Rear: Planet Bike superflash mounted on the back of my rear rack.
Front: Light & Motion Urban 500 mounted on the handlebars.

I use these 90% of the time, the exception being <10 min rides in daylight.


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 9:51am #

On my seat post I use the planet bike super flash (very bright.. Have you ever ridden behind someone who is using one? It is blinding) with rechargeable AAA batteries, 800 lumen cygolite on my helmet (so i can direct my beam into the faces of drivers who are trying to pull out from side streets and may not be paying attention). During the day when it is sunny I won’t use the cygolite but probably should. I use the steady beam with a pulse setting at night. I tend to use the rear blinky all of the time.
I have small planet bike spok blinkies mounted on my helmet as backups.

I have killed a few planet bike superflash blinkies because I got caught in a downpour for 4 hours or so at a time. I guess if water gets in them, they get messed up. They will just cycle through the settings on their own and even turn off and on while just sitting around. That can be solved with a plastic bag I suppose.


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 9:54am #

I run a nite ize 5 led rear light mounted to my back basket
another cheap blinky and a planet bike flashlight up front on handlebars. also wear petzl on my helmet .
I have one rear binky on at all times when on the road ,
at dusk i run them all ! one small bilinky in back and the bigger one on solid red .
Everyone who rides at night should run lights with 2 in back so you have a back up !!!


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 10:00am #

Yet another planet bike superflash. On back of helmet and used consistently as light wanes, less consistently otherwise. Tiny little no-name keychain-ish blinker facing forward from helmet.

Absurdly bright magic-shine headlight used in non-blink mode only as light wanes. Lots of retroreflective tape, the part of the frame not obscured by panniers, fork, and helmet.


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 10:07am #

Back: A Planet Bike Superflash on my rack, a Blackburn Flea on my pack.

Front: NiteRider 650. Ridiculously bright.

All lights in flash mode regardless of daylight conditions.


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 10:14am #

Four (when I’m in traffic, always)
two red on each side of the rear rack: Cygolite hotshot and a Planetbike.
one red Bell on the back of the helmet.
one white on the handlebars.

I use a non-blinky headlamp on the fork too… so I guess that makes 4 blinkies and one non-blinky. I’m a bit of a spaz when it comes to wanting to ‘be seen’ when riding in traffic. I’d put a disco ball on there if I could.

For trail riding, I only use the steady headlamp and one rear red blinky, sometimes, I don’t in bright daylight.


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 10:28am #

Four blinkies – 2 on front, 2 on back

One on the front is a Cateye Volt rechargable. The other is a cheap AA battery blinky.

On the back I have a Cateye Reflex Auto, which comes on by itself when it’s dim/dark and moving. The other is a Planet Bike helmet blinky.

I run all four all of the time, unless it’s crazy sunny, and then I only run the front blinky.


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 10:30am #

I’d put a disco ball on there if I could.

I love that mental image.

We need that kind of crazy for the bikes with menorahs (and without, I think a disco ball would be awesome) join the cars on Chanukah parade! Any chance I can drag you in?


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 11:01am #

And here it is:


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 11:48am #

Do you use one? Yes.

Front / rear / both? Both

What brand / model(s)?

2 up front, both “be seen” lights, one on steady and one blinking. When it gets real dark, I’ll deploy the Magicshine clone I use for riding singletrack at night, but it hasn’t been necessary yet. When it is necessary, I use it on steady when used on the road.

-Planet Bike Super Spot (discontinued) kinda sucks

-Cateye HL-EL220 (it’s m’eh)

1 in the rear, old Planet Bike Superflash, happy with it.

Where is it mounted / attached?

Headlights are both on the handlebar, one to the left of the stem, one to the right. Superflash mounted to the rear of my rack.

Use during daylight or dark only?

Cateye and Superflash, I run at all times. Super Spot, only when I deem the visibility to be poor(er).


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 12:23pm #

I’m in transition, due to my older lights not fitting on the oversized handlebar.
Before: two cheap cateye lights on front.
Now: a light that straps around the head, worn around the neck.
Eventually: waiting for a good deal on an Expilion 350.
Long term: building a wheel around a generator, adding a B&M.

Flashing during the day if I ride in traffic. Always during low or no light.

Current: 5 led cateye on seatpost, 3 led cateye on belt, I also had a serfas seat stay light (brightest of the three) but the band snapped and it fell off. Some dick intentionally ran it over before I could pick it up as it was laying in the middle of a crowded intersection.

Near Future: PDW radbot on the seatpost and cateye reflex on the back of the rack.

Rear lights are just about always on.

I also have some of those nite ize spokelits (red and multi-color), I’m going to swap them out for all blue or all green, which are notably brighter than the red version. I also want to add some fik’s to my wheels… but they won’t fit on my current wheels which are box shaped and have no usable mounting surface.


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 12:31pm #

When commuting…

Front – A generic front white light.

Rear – Planet Bike Super Flash on the seat post and a Planet Bike Rack Blinky on the cargo rack.

My commutes are typically low or no light. I run all lights on blink regardless of how dark it is. I find that the headlight doesn’t give me much benefit on steady since I typically have street lighting on my routes.

On weekends, I typically ride in a group but still early morning. I tend to have only the Super Flash running on blink. Traffic is allot less and I feel safer in a group.

I never really thought of the redundancy for rear lights. I just want to be seen. I guess that is a bonus.


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 1:05pm #

Front: Cygolite Metro, standard handlebar mounting. Use on blink at twilight and steady/low at night unless in a dark area in which case steady/high.

Rear: Cherry Bomb. Mounted on one bike via a hose clamp to the seat tube and on my other bike I have one hose clamped to a hex standoff on the top left corner of a cargo bin that I attached on the rear rack. Use on blinking mode from twilight onward.

My additional 2 ¢: Using a blinking front light on a trail is obnoxious.


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 1:20pm #

I use a bright steady light on the back of my rack and a blinky on my seat post. The blinkie catches the eye and the steady light makes for better tracking.

Once, after cruising Rt 51 on a Saturday night, I discovered my back light was simply not functioning. It was working when I left home aand I had no reason to think it wasn’t just fine.

Now I go for redundancy.

Dusk/dawn or heavy overcast, I blink my front light.


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 1:23pm #

i used to rock dual bonfires (hated carrying all that wood around and had horrible durability in the rain).
then i upgraded to gaslamps (but it kept exploding when i smoked).
I tried using a lighthouse on a trailer (but the foghorn kept outblasting my ipod).

Currently running a quad setup.
Two up front:
Cateye Nima on the headtube
Knog Boomer on the fork
Two in the back:
Knog Blinder 4 (circle) on the seatpost
Cateye Omni 5 on the rear triangle.

the beast

Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 3:21pm #

I use a bright led flashlight in front, flashing when I have decent visibility and solid on dark roads. Cheap Zefal blinkinking on the seatpost.
A side note…I have been attempting to have my kids bike to all of their cub scout meetings with me. They typically end (and now start) after dark. They each have a few different bikes and it was a pain to switch the taillight holders back and forth and they do not always have something to clip onto, so I took a piece of elastic and put a buckle on it and affixed the light to it. Now they just put the strap around their chest with the light in the back. It is easily adjustable and has worked great so far.


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 3:34pm #

Blaze 1/2 Watt & Superflash Light Set

Usually rear is in blinking mode, front one also in usually in blinking mode. In addition I have Nathan rear light which I usually put on a pocket of my jersey and a chinese light similar to Magic Shine but I acquires it before Magic Shine became popular. It’s 900 chinese lumens (in reality 700+) with three modes: low, high, and blinking high (4 hours, 20 hours and 20 hours of work correspondingly on 4 18650 elements).


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 4:15pm #

pbeaves wrote:i used to rock dual bonfires (hated carrying all that wood around and had horrible durability in the rain).

Burning torches are handy!

Not just for visibility – you can through them through the windows of miscreant drivers! You can get together with the other villagers and storm the castle.


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 5:28pm #

Mick wrote:
Not just for visibility – you can through them through the windows of miscreant drivers! You can get together with the other villagers and storm the castle.

My pitchfork doubles as a tire-lever and air-pump. It was uncomfortable as a saddle&seatpost combo. *rim-shot*


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 6:07pm #

Drewbacca wrote:*rim-shot*

Worst pun.


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 6:15pm #

I have a Cygolite Metro 300 which I’ll flash around dawn/dusk. Rear is a Planet Bike Binky 5 which I run at low-light.

Various coin cell lights as backups.


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 8:38pm #

Two Planet Bike Super’s on my backpack and one Planet Bike 2 watt for my headlight. I feel my headlight could be a bit better. The older I get the more I seem to want. lol Those PB super lights are VERY bright. Any more than that I think you would have drivers wanting to kill you out of spite. Oh and dusk/dark only. In daylight I just wear bright clothes. My backpack is bright orange and in winter I wear a bright jacket. In fall I wear a red one that I think you know what it looks like. Yep, it is well used. :)


Private Message

Nov 6 2013 at 11:59pm #

Mick wrote:

Drewbacca wrote:*rim-shot*

Worst pun.

Nice! That was actually unintentional!


Private Message

Nov 7 2013 at 8:28am #

Planet bike super blinking on rear seat post, Light In Motion Urban 500 on front on bars. I blink in rear if it is dim or dark (dusk, rain, etc), blink in front at dusk and keep front beam steady when it is dark.


Private Message

Nov 7 2013 at 5:54pm #

On the front I use a Cygolite something high, like the 750. I put it on blinky mode and people get really confused and must think for a second I’m a cop or something, because I’ve had people slow down, move over, etc. etc. Very nice for night riding. Plus, during the day people actually assume it is a video camera, which makes people think twice before they act like a jerk. For the back, I saw this really cool thing in the NY Times

Ny Times Article

It is totally nerdy but also super cool to have lines on the street next to you at night. The 2 AAA batteries last surprisingly long. the only drawback is that the screws are super-duper tiny, meaning that you need a crazy small screwdriver (and good eyes) to change the batteries.


Private Message

Nov 7 2013 at 5:56pm #

-Front = Manta Ray D003:
-Rear = Xeccon Geinea Super Bright Micro Rear Light (check out the videos on the attached link):
– Front light is attached to bars, rear light to my seat post.
– I always run both lights in flash mode day or night.

Just to add, I have seen most of the lights mentioned on here and I feel that most people (and manufacturers) significantly overrate the brightness of their lights. Times have changed people. Your biggest threats are texting and distracted drivers. In my opinion you need powerful bright flashing lights to combat the distracted texting driver, day or night. Be as visible as you can – it’s your life.


Private Message

Nov 7 2013 at 6:46pm #

This seems like a good deal, does anyone have experience with the NiteRider MiNewt 150 or the CherryBomb?
$51 for both…


Private Message

Nov 7 2013 at 8:10pm #

One and one, but I am about to upgrade and run two and two. One on the handlebars, one on my helmet. One on my seat post and one on the back of my rack.

Currently, planet bike with AAA batteries on the back and USB rechargeable sunlite on the front.


Private Message

Nov 7 2013 at 8:11pm #

Oh, and I use in low light, dawn and dusk and night time.

Usually not during bright daylight.


Private Message

Nov 7 2013 at 9:47pm #

I will operate at least one front and one rear light whenever I think anybody might kill me, which means on-street in anything other than ideal conditions. If I’m going to be dealing with crossing or overtaking traffic in a busy visual field, I’m going to be lighting up to make sure I’m barking for my share of their limited processing capability.

On the front:
handlebar mounts:
PlantBike 2W led (on, either blink or steady, opposite the MagicShine)
MagicShine knockoff (either blink or steady, opposite the PlanetBike)
Cheapo headlamp on the front of my helmet

On the rear:
(orange reflective slow-vehicle triangle)
rear rack mounts:
Cateye TLD-1100, usually off (in case of an outage)
Portland DesignWorks RadBot1000 usually blinking
DesignShine rear tail light (usually blinking) (some of yinz have seen this)
small rear blinky on helmet

I have one of the dual-laser lane projectors but I find it’s not very pragmatic. Generally, to import a laser for this use into the US, it has to be sub-1/2 watts (iirc), and there’s just not much output at that level; it washes out real easy in ambient urban light.


Private Message

Nov 8 2013 at 1:22am #

Forgot to mention, on the other bike…
Basta Riff dynamo-powered tail light on rack (European market, came on the Focus). The front headlight is the B&M Lumotec LYT (attached at fork crown).

It also has a cheap cateye blinky on the handlebar and a pair of Nite Ize spoke lights.


Private Message

Nov 8 2013 at 9:12am #

Two fore, two aft.

Aft, one on helmet, one dangling very loosely under the seat. I have had very bad luck with taillights snapping off if mounted securely to any part of the bike, one time on the way home from the store where I bought it.

The other aft one is on my helmet, but even that one wants to fly off at odd times. I don’t know a good way to secure it. Both aft lights are fairly standard Planet Bike blinkies that take two AAAs.

Fore, one is a USB rechargeable that I can pop on and off very easily. The charge typically lasts about 20 miles, so comes off with me and goes on the computer once a day. I think the brand is RavX, maybe?

The other is a fairly typical Planet Bike that uses two AAs.

I only use rechargeable cells. I keep one charger on my desk at work, one at home, swapping out cells on one of them about once a week.

My old helmet also had a yellow blinkie mounted on the fore-right side, which I think helped in being seen by people pulling out from right-side entrances, and additional small fore and aft blinkies that took 2032 button cells, but I only used them on occasions where I didn’t think the other two were enough, such as going up Perry Highway after dark.

rice rocket

Private Message

Nov 8 2013 at 9:15am #

One thing that gets pounded into your head around motorcycle-worlds is that it’s really hard for other drivers to judge distance when there’s a single source of light. In a car/truck, there are two headlights, and as you get closer to an observer, the lights will “get further apart” due to perspective. With a single source of light, it’s a million times more difficult for someone to judge how far you are and how fast you’re going because that single light doesn’t really “grow” as you get closer. The most common multi-vehicle accident is when other drivers turn left across the path of travel of a motorcycle.

Same principle applies on bicycles, except your closing speed usually isn’t as great unless you’re bombing down a hill. A single solid light is probably worse than a flashing one at night IMHO, a flashing one adds a component of uncertainty and makes the driver pause and reconsider your distance and closing speed.

Anyways, I ride w/ a triple Cree XM-L light (unbranded) w/ a wide beam lens and usually a MC-E in a flashlight to supplement in blinky mode, PB Superflash rear or a Magicshine MJ-818 if I feel like running the cables.

For my MTB, I have a Lezyne Mega Drive on the bars and a single XM-L for the helmet (though I’m considering a Lezyne Super Drive since external batteries are becoming a pain).


Private Message

Nov 8 2013 at 7:34pm #

I have a related question. I use a Light In Motion Urban 500 and have been generally quite happy with it, but from time to time it doesn’t seem to charge up correctly. Recently, I decided that it might be that I did not DISCHARGE it enough, so I decided to let it run out before plugging in the microusb charger at work. The blasted thing blazed away at 500 lumens for about 4 hours. I rode home the next night with nice lights, but the following night (last night), it blinked off about 20 sec after I started my ride home. This has happened a couple of other times. Right now I am looking at a red blinking led on the back because I forgot to plug it in earlier today when I got to work. Ugh. I’ve bled in about 2h worth of electrons, and I’m going to head home with it on blinker mode mostly to conserve power (it uses vastly less average power when blinking). Anybody had these issues??


Private Message

Nov 10 2013 at 12:01am #

I added two more red blinkers to the back of my commuter. Very effective!


Private Message

Nov 10 2013 at 1:05am #

ajbooth wrote:I added two more red blinkers to the back of my commuter. Very effective!

What on earth mars is going on with your rack??

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 56 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.