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Is there any good non-rechargeable headlights anymore?



 
 
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  #1  
Old May 10th 17, 05:05 PM posted to rec.bicycles.tech
DougC
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Posts: 1,276
Default Is there any good non-rechargeable headlights anymore?

A couple of my old headlights died due to batteries accidentally being
left in them long enough to leak. The old lights were Cateye HL-EL530s,
that took 4 x AA batteries.
http://www.cateye.com/en/products/detail/HL-EL530/
tho mine wasn't that one, mine was the previous-generation that had a
rectangular beam due to a second focusing cone inside the main
reflector. I cleaned them up a bit with some vinegar and water, but
they're probably toast. The reflector surfaces look pretty gray.

So I'm shopping around for ANY kind of headlights that take 4 x AA
batteries, and there is none. The best I can find is one that takes 3 x
AAA, but that doesn't put out anywhere near what the previous lights did.

The best that Cateye offers now is the EL135, which is 3 LEDS and only 2
AA batteries.
http://www.cateye.com/en/products/detail/HL-EL135/

I don't need a whole lot of light, I had two headlights just in case one
failed. And I don't want anything with an external battery pack, even
for free.

Years back the rechargeables cost too much ($100+ just for the smallest
systems). Now they're cheap enough, but they suck compared to the
disposable-battery ones.

At Nashbar, the Nashbar-brand Wedge headlight is 100 lumens, costs $20
and uses 3 AAA batteries. The run time is given as 15 hrs on high, 30
hours on low and 60 hours on flashing.

Nashbar also sells the Cateye Volt 100, the lowest-end Volt model. It is
USB rechargable and the output is given as 100 lumens... But the runtime
is given as "2 to 30 hours depending on mode". Uhhh... no sale.

I'm trying to spend money here and just not seeing a lot that's
interesting.

Plus--on the LWB recumbent, the lights have to be mounted upside-down.
And the old Cateye lights were "waterproof", while almost all of these
new ones are just "water resistant", and I'd bet, not nearly so if
mounted upside down in the rain...

So far the best candidate is the little 3-AAA flashlights with handlebar
mounts. They're round beams but have a spot-flood focusing lens at
least. Plus they all have high/low/flash modes now.
Ads
  #2  
Old May 10th 17, 05:44 PM posted to rec.bicycles.tech
Joerg[_2_]
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Posts: 4,625
Default Is there any good non-rechargeable headlights anymore?

On 2017-05-10 09:05, DougC wrote:
A couple of my old headlights died due to batteries accidentally being
left in them long enough to leak. The old lights were Cateye HL-EL530s,
that took 4 x AA batteries.
http://www.cateye.com/en/products/detail/HL-EL530/
tho mine wasn't that one, mine was the previous-generation that had a
rectangular beam due to a second focusing cone inside the main
reflector. I cleaned them up a bit with some vinegar and water, but
they're probably toast. The reflector surfaces look pretty gray.

So I'm shopping around for ANY kind of headlights that take 4 x AA
batteries, and there is none. The best I can find is one that takes 3 x
AAA, but that doesn't put out anywhere near what the previous lights did.


http://en.bumm.de/produkte/akku-sche...r/ixon-iq.html

Quote "4 rechargeable Ni-MH batteries, each 2100 mAh, no memory effect.
Charging time approx. 5 hours using provided charging unit. Power supply
by 4 non-rechargeable AA batteries possible".

However, their stuff tends to be expensive.

I said good bye to the li'l battery lights a long time ago and now have
a 1000 lumen light on each bike. On the road bike powered by a 8.4V
8800mAh Li-Ion pack which gives me 4-5h at full bore. The MTB has a
battery half that size. In the garage I plug in and it'll be ready for
the next round. What I still have to do is make electrical boxes and
regulators so I can power some modified bright rear lights that then
also do not require swapping out batteries anymore. The topper would be
a hub dynamo to keep things charged but that might never happen.

The only mod I did to the front lights was installing diffuser discs so
they won't blind others and throw a nice amount of light horizontally.

--
Regards, Joerg

http://www.analogconsultants.com/
  #3  
Old May 10th 17, 09:33 PM posted to rec.bicycles.tech
Frank Krygowski[_4_]
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Posts: 5,395
Default Is there any good non-rechargeable headlights anymore?

On 5/10/2017 12:05 PM, DougC wrote:

Plus--on the LWB recumbent, the lights have to be mounted upside-down.
And the old Cateye lights were "waterproof", while almost all of these
new ones are just "water resistant", and I'd bet, not nearly so if
mounted upside down in the rain...


Why mount upside down? Can you not fashion a mounting bracket of some sort?

If I wanted a battery powered light, I'd probably try the IXON that
Joerg linked. But I'd do whatever necessary to mount it right side up,
if only for the optics.


--
- Frank Krygowski
  #4  
Old May 10th 17, 11:45 PM posted to rec.bicycles.tech
DougC
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Posts: 1,276
Default Is there any good non-rechargeable headlights anymore?

The XION (plain and Premium model) may be all there is. I been looking
around a couple hours more and still found none that were 4xAA; they're
either 3xAAA or 2xAA. I may try some cheapo ones on Amazon first
however, since two of the XION Premiums would cost $90 + shipping.

I didn't check out any Euro-specific brands because they usually cost so
much more. Pretty much all the B&M lights that I've seen before were big
expensive rechargeable ones.

On 5/10/2017 3:33 PM, Frank Krygowski wrote:

Why mount upside down? Can you not fashion a mounting bracket of some
sort?

If I wanted a battery powered light, I'd probably try the IXON that
Joerg linked. But I'd do whatever necessary to mount it right side up,
if only for the optics.



The recumbent has chopper-style bars and a handlebar bag that covers the
"top" side of the bars and prevents mounting lights right-side up. And
with the Cateyes, they gave the same beam upside down.

Usually I would remove the batteries in the lights I had, if I wasn't
going to be using the bike much (like during winter). This time I just
forgot. And I left the batteries in the rear lights as well, but none of
them rotted. :|

-------

Overall, the rechargeable performance is simply NOT in line with the prices.
For the light that a 2xAA model that costs $20 may put out, it seems
like you need to spend $50-$60-$70 for a rechargeable light to match it.

Another thing I don't like about almost all of the lights I'm looking
at, is that they have no horizontal adjustment at all. With the old
Cateye lights, they had about 8 degrees of left-right adjustment. If the
bars weren't perfectly straight where they were mounted, I still had a
bit of room to adjust them centered, since I normally only use one at a
time.

I am aware of the extra bars just for mounting lights and whatnot. I
didn't want to have to add that on.
  #5  
Old May 11th 17, 01:12 AM posted to rec.bicycles.tech
Frank Krygowski[_4_]
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Posts: 5,395
Default Is there any good non-rechargeable headlights anymore?

On 5/10/2017 6:45 PM, DougC wrote:
The XION (plain and Premium model) may be all there is. I been looking
around a couple hours more and still found none that were 4xAA; they're
either 3xAAA or 2xAA. I may try some cheapo ones on Amazon first
however, since two of the XION Premiums would cost $90 + shipping.

I didn't check out any Euro-specific brands because they usually cost so
much more. Pretty much all the B&M lights that I've seen before were big
expensive rechargeable ones.

On 5/10/2017 3:33 PM, Frank Krygowski wrote:

Why mount upside down? Can you not fashion a mounting bracket of some
sort?

If I wanted a battery powered light, I'd probably try the IXON that
Joerg linked. But I'd do whatever necessary to mount it right side up,
if only for the optics.



The recumbent has chopper-style bars and a handlebar bag that covers the
"top" side of the bars and prevents mounting lights right-side up. And
with the Cateyes, they gave the same beam upside down.

Usually I would remove the batteries in the lights I had, if I wasn't
going to be using the bike much (like during winter). This time I just
forgot. And I left the batteries in the rear lights as well, but none of
them rotted. :|

-------

Overall, the rechargeable performance is simply NOT in line with the
prices.
For the light that a 2xAA model that costs $20 may put out, it seems
like you need to spend $50-$60-$70 for a rechargeable light to match it.

Another thing I don't like about almost all of the lights I'm looking
at, is that they have no horizontal adjustment at all. With the old
Cateye lights, they had about 8 degrees of left-right adjustment. If the
bars weren't perfectly straight where they were mounted, I still had a
bit of room to adjust them centered, since I normally only use one at a
time.

I am aware of the extra bars just for mounting lights and whatnot. I
didn't want to have to add that on.


I've done custom mounts for several different headlights, mostly because
I almost always have handlebar bags mounted. Those interfere with most
handlebar mounted lights . But I'm pretty content when fabricating a
mechanical solution to such a problem.

--
- Frank Krygowski
  #6  
Old May 11th 17, 01:44 AM posted to rec.bicycles.tech
DougC
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Posts: 1,276
Default Is there any good non-rechargeable headlights anymore?

On 5/10/2017 7:12 PM, Frank Krygowski wrote:
...
I've done custom mounts for several different headlights, mostly because
I almost always have handlebar bags mounted. Those interfere with most
handlebar mounted lights . But I'm pretty content when fabricating a
mechanical solution to such a problem.

Welp, I ordered a couple of tactikewl flashlights and some mounts off
Amazon for about $50 (for two of each). The flashlights are 18650 or
3xAA and come with the rechargeable stuff, but also have the 3xAA insert
too. They are claimed as waterproof and have no USB charging ports, so
they /should/ (might?) keep working in the rain.

There is not a great amount of choice it seems.

Apparently roughly 95% of all the flashlights listed on Amazon is one of
maybe 6 different China models, just sold under different names and
prices. And if you disregard the "all-rubber-band-mounts" and the
"fake-Two-Fish-mounts" that don't hold, then there's only about four
different kinds of handlebar-flashlight mounts--a couple of which were
only big enough for the 3xAAA lights, and so were clearly too small for
the flashlights I got.

I can make mounts too but don't really wanna.


  #7  
Old May 11th 17, 01:55 AM posted to rec.bicycles.tech
avagadro7@gmail.com
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Posts: 6,197
Default Is there any good non-rechargeable headlights anymore?

https://www.google.com/search?site=&...attery+holders
  #8  
Old May 11th 17, 03:51 AM posted to rec.bicycles.tech
Jeff Liebermann
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Posts: 2,569
Default Is there any good non-rechargeable headlights anymore?

On Wed, 10 May 2017 11:05:04 -0500, DougC
wrote:

So I'm shopping around for ANY kind of headlights that take 4 x AA
batteries, and there is none. The best I can find is one that takes 3 x
AAA, but that doesn't put out anywhere near what the previous lights did.


There's a reason why you'll only find 2 or 3 AA batteries. While
LED's require roughly 3.5 to 4.0 volts to operate. Something like
this:
http://us.tdk-lambda.com/lp/images/2011-10-chart.png
This varies with LED type, color temp, bin, etc. You can barely do
that with 2 alkaline AA cells at a nominal 1.5v each. It's easy to do
with 3 AA cells. Actually, it can be done with 2 cells using a boost
inverter to increase the battery voltage, but few do it. I think (not
sure) that my Planet Bike 1 watt Blaze headlight does that. It runs
on 2 AA alkaline batteries.
https://www.amazon.com/Planet-Bike-Blaze-1-Watt-Headlight/dp/B0015R1NBW
It's no longer in production.

It's rated at 76 lumens. Roughly, todays LED's produce 75-80 lumens
per watt of power consumption when warm. So, a 1 watt LED will
produce about 75 lumens. Newer LED's are more efficient, but this is
sufficient for a rough estimate of output.

Incidentally, 3 AAA alkaline batteries have the same capacity as 2 AA
alkaline batteries:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AAA_battery
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AA_battery
A AAA battery has about 1000 ma-hrs of capacity while a AA does about
2500 ma-hrs:
AAA 3 cells * 1000 ma-hr * 1.5v = 4.5 watt-hrs
AA 2 cells * 2500 ma-hr * 1.5v = 4.5 watt-hrs

I don't need a whole lot of light,


How many lumens would you estimate that you need?
http://www.planetbike.com/page/learn/lightfinder

Plus--on the LWB recumbent, the lights have to be mounted upside-down.
And the old Cateye lights were "waterproof", while almost all of these
new ones are just "water resistant", and I'd bet, not nearly so if
mounted upside down in the rain...


Look for IP ratings, not marketing buzzwords.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IP_Code
Hint: You don't want waterproof. If it were, any standing water on
the not so perfect seal would get sucked into the flashlight if the
temperature drops and the air inside the light produces a partial
vacuum.

So far the best candidate is the little 3-AAA flashlights with handlebar
mounts. They're round beams but have a spot-flood focusing lens at
least. Plus they all have high/low/flash modes now.


If you're not picky about beam pattern, you could probably get away
with an LED flashlight and a handlebar mount. Something like this:
https://www.walmart.com/ip/Schwinn-1W-Head-Light/19593671
For a battery, it takes either a single 24650 LiIon cell, a single
18650 LiIon cell with an adapter sleeve, or 3 AAA alkaline batteries
in an included holder.

Given your requirements, I'm not sure what to recommend. However, I
would strongly suggest that you reconsider your aversion to LiIon
batteries. For lighting of any type, they're far superior to
alkaline.

--
Jeff Liebermann
150 Felker St #D
http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060 http://802.11junk.com
Skype: JeffLiebermann AE6KS 831-336-2558
  #9  
Old May 11th 17, 03:53 AM posted to rec.bicycles.tech
SMS
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Posts: 7,997
Default Is there any good non-rechargeable headlights anymore?

On 5/10/2017 9:44 AM, Joerg wrote:

snip

Quote "4 rechargeable Ni-MH batteries, each 2100 mAh, no memory effect.
Charging time approx. 5 hours using provided charging unit. Power supply
by 4 non-rechargeable AA batteries possible".


For a lot of lights, the output is significantly less on primary cells.
Alkaline batteries have high internal resistance and can't provide the
current that NiMH AA batteries provide.

There are some good 4AA flashlights that could double as a bicycle light
but these are high-end lights and are expensive
https://www.fenixlighting.com/product/ld41-fenix-flashlight/.

There is this 3xAA bicycle specific light:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06X6FXCLN

Someone selling a NOS HL-EL530:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Cateye-opticube-hl-el530-cycling-light-/172654249234

There's also the option of powering a light with an external battery
pack made up of AA cells rather than Li-Ion cells. For example,
http://www.herrmans.eu/start-english/products?familyId=2208 will run
on a 6-12V pack. But again, alkaline batteries will leave something to
be desired.
  #10  
Old May 11th 17, 03:56 AM posted to rec.bicycles.tech
SMS
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Posts: 7,997
Default Is there any good non-rechargeable headlights anymore?

On 5/10/2017 5:44 PM, DougC wrote:

snip

I can make mounts too but don't really wanna.


Yeah, I make mounts. Not because I really wanna, but because I can make
mounts that are a lot better than what is commercially available. I use
the Maglite Delrin clamps on a piece of aluminum flat bar mounted to an
aluminum or steel clamp for the bars.
 




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