Winter visibilty - more than just lights - Road Cycling UK

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Winter visibilty – more than just lights

It’s late in the year, it’s getting colder and unless you’re lucky enough to lead a life of leisure, It’s getting to the point that most of us are starting and finishing the working day in half light, which is inevitably and rapidly to become complete darkness.

It’s essential that you kit yourself out with some good lights but when commuting in traffic or generally out on the roads at this time of year you’ll need all the help you can get to be seen.

Most of us here in the office undertake the daily commute across central London and since the introduction of those lovely ‘bendy buses,’ which so often seem to completely forget that they have another bus stuck to their back side, we’ve decided to kit ourselves out like Christmas trees (with a hint of 80’s Mr Motivator illuminous lyrcra) to avoid being completely cut up by all moving vehicles, not to mention pedestrians.

And not forgetting those who have a rural commute. The lack of street lights, cars, shops and the general plethora of lights means it’s even more important you take measures to be spotted.


The Hump

First up is the Respo Hi Viz Hump which we swore by last winter, however, this year, there’s more. Now, it’s certainly not designed to be subtle and this year it’s even more of a flashy affair and now comes complete with AA batteries. Basically ‘The Hump’ is a reflective and illuminous ruck-sack cover. This year the range includes the new P15 light version which incorporates electro-luminescent lighting strips which are powered by two AA batteries making the user even more visible.

Hump

We used a flash in this picture and you can see the effect that car headlights would have when then shine onto your back when you’re in motion. It’s a no fuss, cheap and practical way to make yourself more visible so we think, why not really – every little helps!


Pedalite

pedalites

Ideally you want plenty of lights on your bike to make sure that other road users can see you – the innovative new pedal from Pedalite offers a unique solution, and it’s a good one. Indeed Pedalite has been recognised by the plastics industry by winning the Consumer Product Design of the Year award for 2005.

Inside the rugged plastic body is a small micro-generator, powered simply by the body rotating around the axle. Energy is then stored temporarily in capacitor, meaning the LEDs can continue flashing for up to ten minutes after you’ve stopped pedalling. There’s three LED clusters arranged around the side of the pedal. There are also two traditional reflectors on the backs of the pedal. Aside from the LEDS, the pedal looks very much like you’d expect a pretty standard non-clipless flat pedal to look, except it’s considerably chunkier.

Apparently, only 1% of your energy is used to power the LEDS, and in use there is no noticeable difference to a normal flat pedal set-up. It’s not heavy either, and has stood up to plenty of abuse on the streets of London.

Overall, the Pedalite is a great idea and a fantastic product – if you’re commuting short distances in the dark you really should invest in a pair. In fact, we can’t see why these shouldn’t come as standard on all bikes which are sold to commuters.

Price: £49.99
Contact: 0207 376 8438
Web: www.pedalite.com

Tech Specs:

  • Flashing diodes provide 360-degree visibility
  • Provides a unique light signature
  • Rugged and long-lasting
  • Operates automatically when ridden
  • No batteries

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