Mountain Bike Light Update

Back in 2008 I researched and bought some cheap mountain bike lights from DealExtreme. The TrustFire TR-801 lights worked fine, no complaints.

Then a few years later the lights got brighter and a few of my friends got some. For climbing and flat riding the brighter lights didn't make much difference, but for long downhill runs I noticed my lights didn't shine far enough down the trail so I'd slow down.

I finally bought a 1200 lumen (more like 1000 lumens) light for the handlebars. It cost me around $80 and came with a 4 cell battery pack good for 2.5 hours on 100% brightness.

SingFire SF-90 Cree XM-L T6 4-Mode 1000lm White Bicycle Headlamp - Silver + Grey (4 x 18650)
This thing is crazy bright. I can't outrun this light with my moderate DH skill. When I finish my ride, pack my bike in the car and drive home, the car headlights look dim and twice now I've stopped to make sure they were both working. I've had this light for a few years and I haven't had any trouble with it, although I have lost a few of the o-rings that mount it to the handlebars. I recommend tethering the o-ring to the light with string. I bought a pack of o-rings from Harbor Freight for replacements.

Now an equivalent light (with battery pack, charger and accessories) is only $32. Stunningly cheap.
UPDATE: The light is even cheaper on Amazon, only $21. And some riders prefer to use this wide angle lens to change the beam from a round 10 degree spot to a 10 degree tall by 30 degree wide-angle pattern.

The bike light section of DealExtreme is a lot bigger; now there are pages of lights.

This light looks nicer - a real battery pack with rubber straps. $75 is a fair price.
MagicShine MJ-808E HA-III CREE XM-LT60 3-Mode 1000-Lumen LED Bike Light Set (4x18650)
And for those who go warp speed, or for some reason need more light, there's this 2000 lumen beast:
UltraFire D88 3 x Cree XM-L T6 2000lm 5-Mode White Light Bicycle Lamp - Black + Silver (4 x 18650)

Or how about 2700 lumens:
SingFire SF-530 3 x Cree XM-L T6 2730lm 4-Mode White Bicycle Lamp - Silver + Black (4 x 18650)

Yeah, you can go nuts with lights these days. I feel for most riders 800 - 1000 lumens is enough.

So with the brighter light on the bars I've got plenty of light. I still wear the TR-801 on my helmet so I get light where I look, which is helpful for switchbacks and spotting low branches. This setup works OK but the TR-801 looks dim compared to the handlebar light so maybe I'll upgrade the helmet with this 350 lumen light:
FandyFire 2100 CREE XP-GR5 1-Mode 350-Lumen White LED Flashlight with Strap (1 x 18650 / 2 x 16340)

If you want to try night riding, there are a lot of bright lights available now for not much money.


zim said...

Love the Deal extreme!

Hollow Orings said...

Thanks for the update.