Best flashlight to use as a bicycle headlight? Stock not modded. Preferably 18650 or 21700.

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Mikeadoo
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Best flashlight to use as a bicycle headlight? Stock not modded. Preferably 18650 or 21700.

Hey everyone I do a lot of biking on the trails and at night time. I have a thorfire headlight kit for one of my bikes but that don’t fit my hybrid bike. I was just curious if any other members bike at night and what light they use flashlight wise? Preferably 18650 or 21700 cell lights. C8 size or smaller. Maybe a little bigger. I’m open minded.

I have a twofish flashlight mount if that matters.

Something with good light output and decent runtime. I can always carry some extra cells in my bag in the proper battery holders.

Thanks,
Mike

Mike

WalkIntoTheLight
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I use a BLF A6 on the front of my bike, and a Zebralight headlight on my head. The front light gives a bright, floody beam ahead of me, while the headlight allows me to see wherever I look. That’s the combo I like best. Oh, and a rear red light, but that doesn’t help me see, of course.

Pretty much any 18650 EDC flashlight will do. They’re all small, with good flood.

Zebralight’s have the best efficiency and run-time, so I occasionally will use one on the front of my bike if I’m going more than a couple of hours and don’t want to change the battery. Any of the SC64/SC600 series are good for that. The other advantage over cheaper lights (like the BLF A6) is that thermal regulation is based on temperature, so when you’re riding the light stays cool and won’t step-down. The BLF A6 uses a timed step-down, so max is only viable for brief periods. Not that using max on any light is practical anyway, since it will drain your battery fast.

Sometimes I don’t bother with the headlight, if I know I’ll be on roads the whole time. Its main benefit is when I’m on paths, where I’m looking around more.

Mikeadoo
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Ive never heard of Zebralight before. SC64/SC600 are the Zebralights? I do most trail riding and some riding on the back roads here with no street lights at all. So i like having some kind of light on me. I also need to get a rear light thanks for the reminder Walkintothelight

Mike

cu42
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I also use my BLF A6. It seems to have a good flood/beam combo to cover it all for biking on the flat. I do switch out for the TK18 or VG10, but A6 is the go to.

18650 seems to give long consistent usage in a small form. I havent gone any smaller.

Mikeadoo
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cu42 wrote:
I also use my BLF A6. It seems to have a good flood/beam combo to cover it all for biking on the flat. I do switch out for the TK18 or VG10, but A6 is the go to.

18650 seems to give long consistent usage in a small form. I havent gone any smaller.


I’ve heard a lot of awesomeness about the A6 and have seen videos also. I do mostly trail riding but it’s also really dark here with no street lights at all.

Mike

korkfoto
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I am using Convoys S2+. One in the city, 1 or 2 outside. I carry a pack of 2 spare 18650s. And a Liitokala Li-100. In this way, I can refuel my flashlight or my phone. Smile

FIAT LUX!

cu42
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I have been told that the quads and triples can be more efficient at usable outputs since you are not driving a single LED closer to the edge and can be more floody as well depending on model and optics.
I would think you could get a slightly larger but much brighter quad and run it on medium and have great flood and output.

Boro
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Left handlebar Fenix BC30, right handlebar fenix a-10 mount with sc600. About 4,000mi a year. Not much by some standards, but works for me.
I use two taillights as well. I find motorist appreciate(move over) easy to see riders.

CM2010
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I’ve currently been testing out a few of my lights on my bike this week.

Using this mount I’ve been using a Rofis MR70 (26650 light) and will be testing it out with a Lumintop ODF30 when it arrives sometime soon.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Bicycle-Light-Flashlight-Mount-Bracket-Holder-B...

I’ve also been using my Zebralight SC600 Mk III.

korkfoto
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Apart from the Convoys, I use a pair of cheap but quite visible blinkies (from Lidl – they come in pair – white/red) attached to my helmet. The white one facing forward and the red one, the opposite direction. This way, am I more visible to motorists as I move the head (towards them).

FIAT LUX!

wle
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I would just get a $30 bike headlight with 4 18650s in the battery pack.

Reasons:

it will mount better

range/brightness will be ok for riding over an hour – a single 18650 at 700 lumens will be dead in 20 minutes

charging will not require removing the light or the batteries (they come with a charger that ‘replaces’ the headlight during charging)

\light pattern will be optimized for bike

wle

"You never have the wind with you - it's either against you, or you're having a good day."
    Daniel Behrman, "The Man Who Loved Bicycles".
It never gets easy, you just go faster.   
-Greg Lemond.
       ,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸

CM2010
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The Nitenumen X8 from banging looks decent for the price.

adam7027
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I’d recommend Astrolux S41/S41S with quad Nichia 219C (\+TIR optics), because it has a very wide and floody beam pattern. Since I have it, I ‘forgot to use’ both my Convoy S2\+ lights and my BLF A6 (I intend to modify both of them later, however).

WalkIntoTheLight
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Mikeadoo wrote:
Ive never heard of Zebralight before. SC64/SC600 are the Zebralights? I do most trail riding and some riding on the back roads here with no street lights at all. So i like having some kind of light on me. I also need to get a rear light thanks for the reminder Walkintothelight

Yes, Zebralight SC64 and SC600 are their main 18650 flashlights. Small, bright, and efficient. Lots of modes with a great user interface, too. They come in a variety of models from lots of flood to a decent amount of throw, and a good choice of tints.

Anyway, they’re somewhat expensive ($70-$90 US), which is why I don’t always use one on the bike, since if I park it I usually leave the light on it and don’t want an expensive light to get stolen. (The BLF A6 I often use is an inexpensive light ~$25, but still good.) But if you’re always with your bike or you take the light off, then a Zebralight is a great light.

For a bike light, a Zebralight SC600w MkIV (or the older MkIII) is a good option. Good balance of flood and throw. Remove the clip for easy installation to a light holder.

An SC64w is also a good option too, if you want something slightly smaller. Though, personally, I prefer a light a little larger, so that it sticks out from the holder and the air flow can keep it cool.

korkfoto
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wle wrote:
I would just get a $30 bike headlight with 4 18650s in the battery pack.

Reasons:

it will mount better

range/brightness will be ok for riding over an hour – a single 18650 at 700 lumens will be dead in 20 minutes

charging will not require removing the light or the batteries (they come with a charger that ‘replaces’ the headlight during charging)

\light pattern will be optimized for bike

wle

I like to travel quite light and I never leave my bike unattended with all the gear (light, odometer etc.) attached; as I make many stops traveling in the city, you can imagine what would mean to get the 4 pack on&off the bike.

FIAT LUX!

WalkIntoTheLight
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adam7027 wrote:
I’d recommend Astrolux S41/S41S with quad Nichia 219C (TIR optics), because it has a very wide and floody beam pattern. Since I have it, I ‘forgot to use’ both my Convoy S2 lights and my BLF A6 (I intend to modify both of them later, however).

The problem I have with very floody lights (like the S41 quad), is that it bothers drivers coming towards you. Too much of the light goes in all directions, including driver’s eyes.

I find even the BLF A6 is pushing it, when it comes to flood. I sometimes turn it down one level if drivers are coming towards me.

wle
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actually the 4 pack just velcros on in about half a minute

"You never have the wind with you - it's either against you, or you're having a good day."
    Daniel Behrman, "The Man Who Loved Bicycles".
It never gets easy, you just go faster.   
-Greg Lemond.
       ,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸

Sidney Stratton
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click image for album – 2 more pics

Flashlight – Thorfire TK-15

Bike mount

wle
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Sidney Stratton wrote:

click image for album – 2 more pics

Flashlight – Thorfire TK-15

Bike mount

I see – just don’t be surprised when the lumens start dropping off at 20 minutes Smile
wle

"You never have the wind with you - it's either against you, or you're having a good day."
    Daniel Behrman, "The Man Who Loved Bicycles".
It never gets easy, you just go faster.   
-Greg Lemond.
       ,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸

Mikeadoo
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cu42 wrote:
I have been told that the quads and triples can be more efficient at usable outputs since you are not driving a single LED closer to the edge and can be more floody as well depending on model and optics.
I would think you could get a slightly larger but much brighter quad and run it on medium and have great flood and output.

Do you have any suggestions as far as the multiple emitters go?

Mike

Mikeadoo
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WalkIntoTheLight wrote:
Mikeadoo wrote:
Ive never heard of Zebralight before. SC64/SC600 are the Zebralights? I do most trail riding and some riding on the back roads here with no street lights at all. So i like having some kind of light on me. I also need to get a rear light thanks for the reminder Walkintothelight

Yes, Zebralight SC64 and SC600 are their main 18650 flashlights. Small, bright, and efficient. Lots of modes with a great user interface, too. They come in a variety of models from lots of flood to a decent amount of throw, and a good choice of tints.

Anyway, they’re somewhat expensive ($70-$90 US), which is why I don’t always use one on the bike, since if I park it I usually leave the light on it and don’t want an expensive light to get stolen. (The BLF A6 I often use is an inexpensive light ~$25, but still good.) But if you’re always with your bike or you take the light off, then a Zebralight is a great light.

For a bike light, a Zebralight SC600w MkIV (or the older MkIII) is a good option. Good balance of flood and throw. Remove the clip for easy installation to a light holder.

An SC64w is also a good option too, if you want something slightly smaller. Though, personally, I prefer a light a little larger, so that it sticks out from the holder and the air flow can keep it cool.


Thanks and I seen the price around 80 bucks. I don’t want too small. I use my C8 but am looking for more flood and throw combo than the C8

Mike

Mikeadoo
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I second the flood in the drivers eyes. My thorfire BL3 (something like that) has the 4 cell battery pack with its own charger and I always have to point it down while I am with traffic. It shines in their faces and the rear view mirrors. I get honked at a lot. Great light but can be a little much at certain times. It also wobbles around with the bumpier roads. I will check out them zebralights. Bit pricey but I do have the thorfire VG10-s that may work good enough for now.

It don’t run quite long enough though. Hmmm

Mike

StandardBattery
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I also use a Zebralight on my helmet, and I use a Fenix BC30 Bike light on one bike (2×18650), and a Klarus G20 (1×26650) on another just because I had a spare. I’m not sure if the G20 fits in a twofish mount or not, I have a couple somewhere, but I remember they did support quite a big light. If you’re off road a Fenix TK35 would probably be wonderful, but maybe just a bit much, and I think I would want to secure it with more than a two fish mount. Smile

adam7027
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WalkIntoTheLight wrote:
adam7027 wrote:
I’d recommend Astrolux S41/S41S with quad Nichia 219C (TIR optics), because it has a very wide and floody beam pattern. Since I have it, I ‘forgot to use’ both my Convoy S2 lights and my BLF A6 (I intend to modify both of them later, however).

The problem I have with very floody lights (like the S41 quad), is that it bothers drivers coming towards you. Too much of the light goes in all directions, including driver’s eyes.

I find even the BLF A6 is pushing it, when it comes to flood. I sometimes turn it down one level if drivers are coming towards me.

Yes, I do it all the time. If I enter a more busy area, I reduce to level 3 of 7. Otherwise I enjoy that I can see around Smile

If you need to care about opposite traffic, German standard (StVZO) lights need to be found (unfortunately I cannot recommend a given model yet, which fulfills that, but I might want to see around for that later).

A backup option could be Jaxman E2L, because it has some flood, but in a rather narrow angle, which can be pointed downwards, and that TIR optics (Carclo 10507) has less light outside the hotspot, than e.g. BLF A6 or Convoy S2\+. 5700K CW 90+ CRI is awesome.

cu42
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Mikeadoo wrote:
cu42 wrote:
I have been told that the quads and triples can be more efficient at usable outputs since you are not driving a single LED closer to the edge and can be more floody as well depending on model and optics.
I would think you could get a slightly larger but much brighter quad and run it on medium and have great flood and output.

Do you have any suggestions as far as the multiple emitters go?

I think others here might be better at suggesting from actual experience with something with a larger cell or multiple cells. The 4 cell pack separate from the head sounds like a winner.
I have an S41 with 4 nichia, but it is still a single 18650 which will not power it high long enough.
I have a BLF Q8 which would probably be the LED/battery combo I was thinking of, but I have never tried it on the bike due to its fat body. A Q8 on medium is perfect output though and a bargain.
Mikeadoo
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[quote=StandardBatteryI’m not sure if the G20 fits in a twofish mount or not, I have a couple somewhere, but I remember they did support quite a big light[/quote]
I have a 3 C cell zoomie Ozark trail light and the twofish mount held it pretty securely for such a heavy light. I don’t use that light biking cuz it’s pretty awkward,but i was just curious about it. Do you think if the twofish mount can hold the 3 C light, it could also hold the Klaus G20? That’s single 26650 light correct? I’ve been eyeballing that light for quite a while. I think it would make a good light. How are the run times on the Klarus G20? I won’t be using it on Too high of a mode. Only what’s needed really

Mike

Mikeadoo
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cu42 i have the Q8 and i agree with what you said. But yes the fat body is kinda am issue to me for now.

Mike

Pavlo
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I just bought an Indigo 5 light. It’s a 26650, but specifically designed for cycling with a 3000k 90cri mtg2 emiter for a large hotspot and large spill. Build quality is impecable.

Currently on sale too!

http://indigo.lighting/shop/lights/indigo5

Mikeadoo
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cu42 wrote:
Mikeadoo wrote:
cu42 wrote:
I have been told that the quads and triples can be more efficient at usable outputs since you are not driving a single LED closer to the edge and can be more floody as well depending on model and optics.
I would think you could get a slightly larger but much brighter quad and run it on medium and have great flood and output.

Do you have any suggestions as far as the multiple emitters go?

I think others here might be better at suggesting from actual experience with something with a larger cell or multiple cells. The 4 cell pack separate from the head sounds like a winner.
I have an S41 with 4 nichia, but it is still a single 18650 which will not power it high long enough.
I have a BLF Q8 which would probably be the LED/battery combo I was thinking of, but I have never tried it on the bike due to its fat body. A Q8 on medium is perfect output though and a bargain.

My apologies cu42. I confused myself a little bit about your post of the Q8 on medium.

Mike

Mikeadoo
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StandardBattery wrote:
I also use a Zebralight on my helmet, and I use a Fenix BC30 Bike light on one bike (2×18650), and a Klarus G20 (1×26650) on another just because I had a spare. I’m not sure if the G20 fits in a twofish mount or not, I have a couple somewhere, but I remember they did support quite a big light. If you’re off road a Fenix TK35 would probably be wonderful, but maybe just a bit much, and I think I would want to secure it with more than a two fish mount. Smile

What do you use to mount your Klaus G20?

Mike

Pavlo
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Mikeadoo wrote:
Pavlo wrote:
I just bought an Indigo 5 light. It’s a 26650, but specifically designed for cycling with a 3000k 90cri mtg2 emiter for a large hotspot and large spill. Build quality is impecable.

Currently on sale too!
Pavlo that’s an interesting light. Does it come with a mount? 130 bucks not too shabby. I’ll consider it. Thank you! ☺
http://indigo.lighting/shop/lights/indigo5

Yes, comes with a basic mount and I also purchased the mtb mount for a more secure setup. It uses a boost driver to run the higher voltage emiter off only 1 cell. What is quite unique about the light unlike most other lights is that all modes are fully regulated, so high at 1000 lumens will not step down unless the battery can no longer sustain it. Most lights show off powerful lumens but can’t sustain the output for more than a couple of minutes. The warmer and high CRI tint is very similar to car halogen headlights, best for reducing glare and adding superior definition and clarity on the road. The heart pulse feature is great for city commuting.

I haven’t used mine very much yet, but so far very impressed. The 26650 cell strikes a great balance of longer battery life and still keep the light relatively compact.

I have also owned and used the Fenix BC30r flashlight. Also a great option, but not cheaper and lower color rendering, as well as integrated batteries which is a downside.

Once I have some free time, will try and post a review of the Indigo on BLF.

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