Dinotte 200L vs Ford F150 Part II

28 12 2010

Low beam on F150...Dual Dinotte 200Ls at 10m...

I was asked for more photos so here they are.  This one shows F150 on low beams at 10m. Camera is position as if passing in a car.

Same setup as above, but camera positioned as if passing bike...

In this shot I just moved 1m to right to simulate position of car passing the bike.

F150 on low beam...camera 20m away...

This is a shot with F150 on low beam from 20m away positioned as if passing the truck in a car.

Same shot as above 1m to right to simulate passing the bike...

F150 on low beams from 20m camera 1m further to right than shot above to simulate driver of car passing bike.

F150 on high beam at 10m...

F150 on high beam at 10m positioned as if passing truck.

F150 on high beam at 10m...

Camera moved 1m to right to simulate passing bike at 10m.

F150 on high beam at 20m...

F150 on high beam with camera at 20m positioned as if passing in another vehicle.

F150 on high beam at 20m...

F150 on high beam with camera at 20m, but positioned 1m  to right to simulate passing bike.

Two Dinotte 200L lights at 20m...truck lights off...



5 responses

28 12 2010

I think I already know what he’d say, but could be interesting to get some comments from Rob (?) at Dinotte regarding these photos. Not expecting anything though after he wrapped up his commentary over at BROL. (which at least was very cool that he did chime in there)

28 12 2010

I doubt Dinotte would want to say anything further on the subject. They are always welcome to comment here or on BROL, but either they genuinely don’t think the blinding issue is real or they know it is and have no solution they can deploy so they won’t acknowledge it.

They’ll continue to sell lots of lights since most cyclists don’t understand or don’t care about this issue.

At some point bike lights will get so bright they’ll be legislated and when that happens Dinotte will have to comply as will any other bike light manufacturer in North America. Until then they’ll just keep using brighter and brighter LEDS.

28 12 2010
Duncan Watson

I didn’t realize at first what you were showing. The light was so blinding I couldn’t see that there was a bike there at all. I saw the differing levels of brightness on the left and right though.


29 12 2010
Chris Emerson

G’day Vik, I’ve been reading your blog for well over a year now, particularly because you write about the types of bikes I’m most interested in. I have found your opinions good food for thought and have found your detailed descriptions handy.

Regarding dynamo powered LEDs, I recently built up a wheel for my Big Dummy with a SON28 and a Supernova E3 Triple. From what I read it is the brightest LED that has been designed for dynamo hubs, but it has a symmetrical beam for off road riding. I was concerned about the issue of blinding oncoming traffic/cyclists initially and considered the various German asymmetric lights. Supernova also make an asymmetric E3 (not triple LED) which is apparently designed to meet the German road law but doesn’t quite pass the standardised test.

However, I decided to go for the E3 Triple as I wanted the brightest light I could get for blasting down the trails at night. The thing that settled my fear of the light beam not being appropriated for general use was that I saw a photo of an E3 triple that had a simple handmade shield fitted that I figured I could copy if I found the light beam to be problematic (there is no German style light law in Australia that I know of).

The E3 Triple is an awesome bright light (and I love it always being at the ready), but I haven’t fitted a shield yet. I’ve only done a couple hundred mostly highway kilometres so far, but haven’t had anyone flash their lights at me yet (plenty of people would take the opportunity if my light bothered them in the slightest). However, I do intend on fitting the shield soon anyway to be courteous. I plan to make it so that I can quickly clip it on and off without much effort. I imagine there will be a bit of messing around setting it up initially.

You seemed to not be too keen on the shielding solution, which I can understand with a battery light, but if done nicely I think it could be a good solution for someone with a dynamo light in a country without a specific law who would like one light for various purposes. I’m not worried about wasting the light with the shield fitted because the E3 Triple should have more than enough to spare and there is no battery draining needlessly in the case of dynamo power.

Ideally I would like a manufacturer to design a single light with a hi/low beam function using either a flip up or detachable asymmetric lens/shield, or an electronic solution.

Thanks for the blogging, Chris

29 12 2010

Hi Chris – in theory I’m not against the idea of a shield to avoid blinding people. However I would rather buy a light that worked the way I wanted without any modification if possible. For the lights I already own a DIY shield or cut off makes so I can still use them.

My two concerns with a shield are: 1) how effective is it? 2) does it affect my use of the lights?

I found by simply putting some tape over the top 1/3rd of my Dinottes the light going up into the eyes of oncoming traffic was reduced, but it wasn’t as effective as I had hoped due to the design of the reflector. These lights have to come off the bike every time I lock it and they go into my pocket or a bags so an elaborate shield isn’t practical. I’m starting to think I’ll keep them as back up lights for brevets and such to add light on fast downhills and to be used if my main light fails. In this role the symmetrical beam isn’t that critical.

If you had the time to take some photos of your shield setup as well as couple shots of the bike coming towards the camera at night with and without the shield I’d be happy to post them on my blog.

There are lots of expensive symmetrical beam lights out there and if we can show people a way to keep using them without blinding others that would be helpful!

I think the high and low beam idea is a great one and is one of changes I think we’ll see with bike lights as they get brighter and brighter.

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