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PostPosted: Sat Oct 04, 2008 10:13 pm 
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Location: Sol Kitts
The 'Engineers' thread reminded me of a conversation I had had with the ken about building your own lights. I've often looked through the candlepowerforums at some of the DIY lighting systems and always fancied giving it a go, also cycling plus used to run an article from time to time. There are some bits I have no problems with and some things still cause a bit of head scratching and was wondering if the collective wisdom wanted to pool together and try to come up with a practical home made lights system.

This thread will either die a death or we'll get a few folk interested and willing to give it a go. Not everyone has to be an expert either, just bounce a few ideas around and share problems/experiences/solutions etc.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 04, 2008 10:18 pm 
retrobike rider
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Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2008 1:01 pm
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Location: Lurking in the bushes at the bottom of your mums garden....
I have an article in an old copy in mountain bike world, which may be of use.

No scanner, but pm me and i'l see if i can get it copied for you.

Cheers.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 04, 2008 10:45 pm 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
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Location: The desolate flats of Cambridgeshire
I'll post up images and details of the one being worked on at work when I get a chance.

Work mate is driving it, and a couple of us have chipped in here and there.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 05, 2008 12:32 am 
retrobike rider
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Theres normally some entertaining threads on stw, including small fires etc :lol:
I did build a home made 50watt halogen which was stupidly cheap, stupidly bright and with a really heavy battery. It could be adapted to run smaller battery/bulb. I'll see if its still kicking about and post some pics :wink:

Would imagine your thinking of leds though


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 05, 2008 9:16 am 
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Location: No brakes? Way to commit soldier.
http://www.retrobike.co.uk/forum/viewto ... hlight=diy

http://www.retrobike.co.uk/forum/viewto ... iy&start=0

This is a good start, maybe those on the threads above who managed to put something together can give us all a refresher?


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 05, 2008 11:25 am 
retrobike rider
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I remember BITD well before the advent of White LED's (and the Blue one to make them possible). Cateye would be bringing out their rear red LED light (I made my own out of ultrabright (in the day) 10mm red LED's.


Anyway, Car spotlight wired to 'solid' car batteries (quite slimline).

Works a treat, you can see everything and the battery just fits in the bottle cages. Plus you get your own back on the ignorant motorists :twisted: .

Weight wasn't a problem as it only for recreational use, plus since my frined used it and had a proflex.... weight really wasn't something to worry about.

Now building an LED one is pretty simple, you can pick up compact solid batteries at reasonable prices. If you go bulb's, then always add LED as backup for the ride home.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 05, 2008 12:34 pm 
King of the Skip Monkeys
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Location: Moomin Valley
Do you remember the old Eveready Nightriders?

Well, with minimal fuss, the D size battery holder allows for two 4 packs of C size batteries (one pack spare) - fully charged Nicads and a 4.8v Krypton bulb gave about 2 hours and a 1/4 mile beam.

I also used to put the old road lamp 6v batteries in my bottle cage.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 05, 2008 1:35 pm 
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Top work fellah's, yeah was thinking of going the LED route. Currently have 2 small LED torches with cree's fitted to my commuter and the output is amazing. I think they were rated around 120-140 lumens and the battery life has been great.

Where I would struggle is the electrics/electronics side. Types of batteries, voltages etc so may use an existing torch and modify it, this kinda thing http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/showthread.php?t=192912

that is unless someone with the smarts can work out all the bits and bobs fro a simple rechargeable unit.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 06, 2008 1:52 pm 
retrobike rider
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There's a long writeup here of how I built my LED light early last year, as used in the D2D this weekend, although it didn't like having that much rainwater inside...

The housing was the hardest part to sort out, and mine is very agricultural compared to the fancy CNC machined lights you see on Candlepower or the lighting forum on MTBR.com. But the main thing is it does the job.

One of the guys I ride with each week recently made some lights himself using a couple of $20 Cree torches from http://www.dealextreme.com, with the ends cut off and 6AA battery packs wired in. He knows nothing about electronics and didn't have any trouble converting them. The only problem is that being torches they have a very narrow beam, when a wide flood tends to be better for bar mounted lights.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 06, 2008 4:11 pm 
retrobike rider
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Location: Left a bit, no right a bit ......
Mine where the ones Dan was using this weekend, lumi housing, cree R2 tripple kit all run at 700ma, apparently they didn't miss a beat. Thing to watch out for is heat, i used a lump of ally and a file to take care of that


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