light trails




Homemade bike lights

I've sold out and moved to commercial lighting systems. Given how much good lights have come down in price and the advances in LED technology, it's much harder for a home tinkerer to build value for money for their efforts than it used to be. Of course, it's still fun to play, but most of us would be kidding ourselves if we think we could build a complete LED lightset for under $100 - especially when we include a battery, charger, and our labour. I might have a go at improving my Ayups at some point - or maybe I'll just buy Magicshine - Chinese, cheap and bright...

Because it's such a blast belting down a narrow tunnel of light on a bumpy firetrail, and I was aghast at the cost of reasonable commercial systems, I made my own el cheapo push bike lights. Suddenly I could see and be seen. This early article was originally published by Oz-on-Dirt, a  one time MTB ezine.

This list is really only kept for historical (hysterical?) reasons - cheap LEDs have become common, and even the best LEDs aren't outrageously priced anymore, even if you wouldn't call them cheap. This is the way we used to do it in the good old days, kiddies. Now get offa mah lawn!

Mk I - text version The original "el cheapo" set up, cheap, bright and effective. 20W halogen spotlight.
Mk II - text version Only ever a work in progress, more professional in appearance, using PVC pipe for a housing and including a switch
Mk III - text version The "Rolls Royce" model... dual 20W spotlights mounted in towball covers with built in switches and high beam light.   Includes good lighting links.
Mk IV The next step - a step backward?  No housings anymore, but with thumb mounted switches.  Simpler than the Mk III's, yet elegant. Includes good light links
MkV What? I've gone all high tech - the digital model. More expensive, but way cool. Light links
demento a Mk III converted into a helmet light, now with cool flashing LED's
the shootout AY-UP Luxeon LEDs vs the demento
Why ride at night? Here's a self indulgent, touch-feely list of the things I enjoy about night riding.

the Mk III

fAt  hIpPy productions
another fAt hIpPy production