What is a Bike Light

The bicycle lighting is the set of components allowing a rider to see and be seen in the dark or low visibility conditions. These components may be lights or reflective elements. In most countries, the lighting is mandatory equipment.

Lighting is an essential element of the urban cyclist. However, it is also useful to the sports cyclist, for drives with little visibility, or for night races.

What is a Bike Light 1

Lighting with generator

The lighting generator (also named dynamo) is a form of lighting used on bicycles, using the propulsion force generated by the user to drive a generator that electrically feeds on or lights .

The device consists of three elements connected together by electrical cable:

  • the current generator, analternator
  • the red light to the rear
  • the headlight
  • the frame, which serves as a ground.

Bicycle generators usually provide an alternating current of 6 volts and 3 watts or 0.5 amps. This power is generally divided into 2.4 W for the headlight and 0.6 W for the rear position lamp. Sometimes the generator has a rated power of 2.4 W, and therefore can not supply the single headlight of 2.4 W. On the contrary there are 3 W bulbs for headlight: they require mounting a standard generator 3 W while excluding the latter feeds the taillight (with filament bulb) at the same time (which will typically be a battery lamp in this case, but can also be powered by the generator if is a lamp with LED, because then very little energy).

What is a Bike Light 2

The disadvantage of the generator is stopped generating electricity off the bike. To compensate, some lighthouses include a capacitor (or rather a super capacitor), which allows them to stay on for a brief stop in the bike, otherwise a battery.

Recent insights bicycle LED, the power consumption is greatly reduced compared to conventional models with filament bulbs, provides power to the same time a headlight and a taillight with any generator, regardless of the rated power thereof. Also the time during which these LED lights can stay on, after stopping the bike with the only super capacitor, is considerably lengthened, commonly up to five minutes or more.

Dynamo “bottle”

A dynamo “bottle” is a current generator driven by a toothed wheel pressed against the sidewall of the tire spring. The body of the generator has a form resembling that of a bottle in miniature, and then the complete wheel this allusion / illusion because enough semblance to a screw cap. Rotated by the friction of the tire, the wheel causes rotation of the rotor of an alternator .When laterally pulls on the generator in order to move it away from the tires, a latch spontaneously engages to hold in the separated position. This latch is disengaged manually or by pressing a button or by pressing longitudinally directly the body of the generator, giving free rein to the spring to support the generator again against the tire wall.

What is a Bike Light 3

Dynamos “bottle” are generally inexpensive and easy to install. However, their operation is noisy, energy-intensive and sensitive to rain/snow/mud. Finally, the operation of the generator is seriously compromised since the wheel will be veiled, especially at high speeds, for causing the generator bursts that interrupt his training. To maximize reliability and minimize tire wear, the dynamo has to be carefully aligned radially with respect to the bicycle wheel with its rotational axis intersecting that of the wheel. Many tires have a molded toothed strip in the sidewall for reliable driving a dynamo “bottle”. But this system does not always guarantee the good functioning, especially in rainy weather, and becomes less effective with wear. The driving wheel may be of metal or plastic, and is almost always serrated longitudinally. It can be equipped with its own mudguards to avoid splashing the rider’s legs (when the dynamo is installed on the rear wheel and if it is already equipped with an efficient fender). There are also knobs shaped small wire wheel, which abrasiveness multiple son steel ensure a more reliable grip in the rain.

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