Den09
Hi guys,

Looking for any recommendations for bike lights rear and front. I found a brand called Nightprovision maybe you can give me any feedback on the brand or if you know any other brand you can recommend. Thanks!
Quote 0 0
Wonkey
I use the Night Rider Lumina 1100 boost. There’s a display screen 10 different settings for light, more than bright enough to use during the day for a strobe function to alert oncoming cars. 

It charges quick so if you’re doing an extended night ride of 7+ hours, you’ll want a back up light and a portable battery pack. 

For the rear rear light I use the Night Rider Cherry Bomb. It’s not recharable, which I like for the rear light, because I can just add batteries and know it works. 20+ hours of bright pulsing light, with 4 other settings. 
Quote 0 0
HollyBoni

Budget? Do you want to see or just to be seen? 

If you want to see, for the front i'd go with a good quality 18650 chinese flashlight with an adapter, probably in the 900-1000 (real) lumen range. Something like a Convoy:

https://convoy.aliexpress.com/store/330416

S series, M1 or M2. You can "program" some models and choose from tons of different modes and mode groups. There is even a bike flash mode although I think it's too deadly. A few good quality batteries, a nice charger and you're set, you have an awesome light that you can use on and off the bike. Personally I use a Convoy M1 as my main light and a C8 as "high beams". These things are too bright in traffic, so I use the C8 like you use high beams in a car, I turn it on and off when there is oncoming traffic. At full blast they're amazing. On offroad descends in the dark I barely have to pay more attention than if I was riding in the daytime. 

For rear lights I haven't found anything that I really like yet.

Quote 0 0
chas

How do you know if a Chinese light is good quality?  I bought a couple when I was experimenting but they were junk (had good reviews though).  They burned through batteries, and had odd fitting parts, switches that didn’t work well.  That was a while ago, maybe things have changed.  But it convinced me to by name brand stuff for things I care about.  Aliexpress is for stuff I could care less about, or want to experiment with.  (I’ve gotten great stuff there, but it is hit and miss).

 

Personally I love light in motion.  I bought a 800lum last year and liked it so much, I bought another.  Strong, light, powerful, and good mounting system.

 

I also have Cygolite, Nightrider, and the Chinese junk.

With the name brands, the biggest difference is the mounting system flexibility.

I love mounting a light to my helmet (pretty critical for most riding), and on my bars.  So, I would rather have two light lights, rather than one big powerful one.

The problem with a helmet light as it gives no shadows, no depth, and can cause a lot of glare with reflective signs.  So I tend to run my bar mounted light brighter, and my helmet mounted light at about ½ the power.  That lets me see around corners, and have some depth and texture to the road surface.

500 lum is usually plenty, but with an 800-900 lume light, I can run it at partial power and get longer life out of it.

 

Rear:  I like the vertical LEDs (hotrod), although the HotShot is hard to miss.  Weak lights are a waste in the rear. 

Quote 0 0
HollyBoni
chas wrote:

How do you know if a Chinese light is good quality?  I bought a couple when I was experimenting but they were junk (had good reviews though).  They burned through batteries, and had odd fitting parts, switches that didn’t work well.  That was a while ago, maybe things have changed.  But it convinced me to by name brand stuff for things I care about.  Aliexpress is for stuff I could care less about, or want to experiment with.  (I’ve gotten great stuff there, but it is hit and miss).



You read reviews from hardcore flashlight nerds, and you avoid the "1 million lumen" really noname stuff. There are a good amount of trusted brands. The Ali link I posted is the official Convoy store.

If you haven't had one of these lights, you're missing out, and you don't know what you're talking about. 🙂 No hit and miss, constant quality if you buy the right stuff. 

The Convoy lights for example are beautifully made. Not just for a chinese light, compared to any other light. Chinese people can make good stuff too! 🙂
The metal work, the threads, the anodizing, the switch, the reflector, just everything. The name brand stuff might have been made next door in just another chinese factory and sometimes you pay a huge extra. Especially for bike lights. But really Convoy is very well known in the flashlight world.

Personally i'm the type of guy that wants to know "what's behind the scenes". I bought a few Convoys for example. I know their REAL lumen output, because a lot of hardcore flashlight nerds have measured them. I know that my lights have good quality batteries in them, because I bought them, and I tested them with my charger. It's also good to know that if something goes wrong (hasn't happened yet) I can just order the replacement part for super cheap and most likely solder it myself. 

Quote 0 0
HollyBoni

When I say "chinese light", this is probably what you think about:

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Zk50-LED-Rechargeable-Flashlight-CREE-XML-T6-linterna-torch-4000-lumens-18650-Battery-Outdoor-Camping-Powerful/32816276576.html?spm=2114.search0104.3.1.612662d9np9kPY&ws_ab_test=searchweb0_0,searchweb201602_3_10065_10068_319_317_10696_453_10084_454_10083_10618_431_10304_10307_10820_10821_537_10302_536_10059_10884_5736015_10887_100031_321_322_10103_5736115,searchweb201603_52,ppcSwitch_0&algo_expid=2a570d97-d6b7-4959-b056-58e8f584ce5f-0&algo_pvid=2a570d97-d6b7-4959-b056-58e8f584ce5f&transAbTest=ae803_3

Well, these are chinese lights too:

https://www.banggood.com/BLF-Q8-4x-XP-L-5000LM-Professional-Multiple-Operation-Procedure-Super-Bright-LED-Flashlight-p-1194351.html?cur_warehouse=CN

https://www.banggood.com/Convoy-Clear-L6-XHP70-3800LM-Super-Bright-Long-Range-LED-Flashlight-p-1083631.html?rmmds=category&ID=521830&cur_warehouse=CN

https://www.banggood.com/Astrolux-MF-01-18x-XP-G3Nichia-219C-12000LM-Super-Bright-LED-Flashlight-18650-p-1165131.html?rmmds=category&ID=522783&cur_warehouse=CN

I'm sure you can see the difference... ÃƒÆ’°Å¸ËœÆ’

For example the BLF Q8 (which is a bit impractical as a bike light because it weighs 500g without the 4 batteries) was designed almost entirely with input by a ton of budgetlightforum.com members, then manufactured by a "chinese light manufacturer" which is pretty darn cool IMO. There is good stuff out there! 

Quote 0 0
Wonkey

Support your LBS when you can. When you show up for a LBS group ride and have a mechanical, and inevitably you will the more you ride, they're going to be there to help. The more support you give them, the more likely you'll be invited to those secret rides and routes that you always seem to see pictures of but never heard about. 

Sure, you can save a couple bucks and rig something that "works" or you can actually support the people that support what you love to do. 

Quote 1 0
HollyBoni
I'd rather not.
I live in a small town, there is one shop. One time I went in, and the owner of the LBS did not know the difference between brake and shift housing. When I really need a tool or something quick, as a last resort I go to my LBS, and 9 out of 10 times they have zero idea what i'm talking about. They mainly work on grocery getter bikes.

Before I started working on my own bikes, I visited a few shops in the area that were a bit further, and I usually just got screwed over.
When I worked as a bike mechanic, the only thing that mattered to my boss was how quick I did a job, not if I did it correctly.

So I have a hard time trusting shops and I'd rather avoid them if possible. 😃 

And when it comes to lights, i'd rather spend half the money and get something that not just "works", but sometimes works better than the big brand stuff. But that might be just me, again. 🙂 Sorry for the rant, it's pretty much mandatory to spread the word when you own good China lights. 😃 They're awesome.
Quote 0 0
Wonkey

Former bike mechanic and sales person here...I'm with you 100% that it doesn't make sense to support an incompetent bike shop(s). And I can't image being in your position where you want to support someone but in good conscience can't. 

Fortunately I'm in an area where we have a handful of excellent bike shops, but my go-to bike shop is Grand Rapids Bicycle Company for their customer service, staff that lives for bikes and actually riding them, and supporting community causes that promote an active life-style around bikes.

I suppose I'm in a different position than many, but I've supported the shop enough over the years that my shop discount (while never asked for but much appreciated) means pricing in-line with most comparable items on-line. 

So to modify my earlier post...support your reputable LBS whenever you can. 😄

Quote 1 0
HollyBoni

Yeah i'd love a nice local shop. But I don't think i've had a single good experience with a bike shop yet... That's the reason I started working on my own bikes. 

One time I needed a cup and cone rear axle changed and I didn't have cone wrenches yet. I took the wheel to a shop. They did it, everything seemed good, but when I got home I randomly checked and all the nuts on the axle were tightened by hand.
What the hell? 

Quote 0 0
bnystrom
A couple of years ago, I picked up some Chinese lights on Ebay just to see if they worked (UniqueFire and Securitying brands). The lights themselves are fine, but the batteries are basically junk that don't deliver anywhere close to their rated run times. This seems to be common and it's due to using junk cells. I'm currently in the process of sourcing quality cells to rebuild the battery packs. Even with the added cost, they're still way cheaper than comparable lights from major brands, so it's a matter of what you're willing to deal with. I bought them as much for fun, experimentation and education as anything else, but I also have some other reliable lights that I can depend on.
Quote 0 0
HollyBoni
This is still the case. Ebay and Ali is still full of junk like that. 20000 lumen lights, XYZfire 7000mAh batteries etc. Run times... No. 😃 Forget it. 

You have to know what to buy. 

For quality cells I recommend Banggood. You can get Samsung, Panasonic etc. cells for a decent price. I tested all the Panasonic NCR18650B batteries I got from Banggod with my charger and they can all deliver their listed 3500mAh capacity. 

Even with "major brands" I don't trust lights with built in batteries. Who knows what's really in them.
Quote 0 0
bnystrom
I'm a little leery of buying cells from China, due to the numerous fakes out there. The prices aren't much different than from US suppliers, so I'll probably buy domestic. I'm leaning toward the Samsung 30Q, which is well-regarded for high-drain uses like bike lights, but the 35E is also an option for their increase capacity. Either one is bound to be better than the junk cells that came with the lights.

Hopefully, I can find them with tabs, which will make building the packs easier. I want to avoid the hassle of buying or building a spot welder.
Quote 0 0
HollyBoni

If you can buy them locally for not much more then go for it, that was not the case for me. 

As always if you read reviews and use common sense, you shouldn't get screwed over. At least I didn't get screwed over yet. I have two Samsung cells and four Panasonic cells that I ordered on two seperate occasions from Banggod and they do what they're supposed to do. 

The 30Q is a good choice although it's not protected, and it's a bit overkill unless you have lights that really put out thousands of lumens. But if you do then go for it. 

Quote 0 0
bnystrom
Are there any cells that are individually protected or do you have to add circuitry for it? I'm planning to rebuild some 2. 4 and 8 cell packs that have circuit boards on them, but I'm not sure if they provide real protection or not.
Quote 0 0
HollyBoni

Well quality protected batteries should be... Protected. 😃 I'm not a big expert on the subject but I think the protection should still work in a pack. Luckily I haven't found out yet if the protection in my batteries works. 😃


"Protected Lithium-Ion (Li-ion) batteries have a small electronic circuit integrated into the cell packaging. This circuit protects the battery against common dangers, such as overcharge, over discharge, short circuit/over current, and temperature."  

Quote 0 0
barturtle

I'm a big fan of lights with German-style shaped beams. I find that in dusty nighttime conditions, when everyone's eyewear is covered with dust, the upward light spill of round beams found on most bike lights can be blinding to those in front of you, as it reflects off the dust on the lenses and makes it impossible to see

The Busch and Muller Ixon IQ is a great AA powered light that I have used multiple times in Trans Iowa.

Quote 1 0