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vincentpaul
10-22-2008, 04:18 PM
I need some lighting for my backup bike, so at lunch today I picked up a Coast LED Lenser flashlight from Home Depot. They're selling for $38 and are quoted as producing 141 lumens. I really doubt that they'll produce the quoted lumens and the quoted 36 hours of run time with its 3xAAA batteries. Probably more like 3 hours of full to 1/2 power with rechargeable Nimh batteries. I'm going to mount it with a couple of conduit hangers mounted end-to-end, so that its suspended under the handlebar and can swivel side to side. It's quite small, about 4 1/2" long and 3/4" in diameter. I'll post a review after I've used it for a few days. $40 including mounting hardware would be dirt cheap, if it actually works.

wyeast
10-22-2008, 04:41 PM
Good luck w/ the project! :) Using NiMH's is a good idea - that light is going to be direct drive, so using NiMH's or Lithiums which hold their voltage longer will give you better performance than Alkalines.

That said, my guess is you'll probably get about an hour or two of useful light before it drops to 50% brightness (depending on how hard the emitter is being driven) - just a guesstimate based on the capacity of AAA vs AA batteries.

Based on what I've seen from most Cree-based lights similar to the Led Lenser, I'd guess around 80-100 lumens out the front. Probably going to be similar to the beam on the Coleman MAX 2AA I posted in this thread (http://bikeportland.org/forum/showthread.php?t=2149).

Let us know how the holder works out. Happy riding! :)

LESTER
10-22-2008, 04:52 PM
I just got a Home Depot flashlight, myself. $5.97 for the Husky 9 LED Everglow. No Mounting hardware included, so I O-ringed it to my old Planet Bike Beamer 5, which it outshines by far and has a much wider beam. That's the only light I have to compare it to.

Has a knurled, glow-in-the-dark, rubberized coating over an aluminum body, takes 3 AAA batteries and is quite compact.

I keep the Beamer flashing and the Husky is steady on only. Much better than last year where I'd switch to solid in the dark stretches and flashing when I got back into streetlighted areas.

vincentpaul
10-23-2008, 08:11 PM
The test continues.....

On the way home yesterday I also stopped at Lowe's and picked up a Task Force 3 Watt LED Flashlight, which also runs a Cree LED. It runs on 2 C batteries, so its quite a bit bigger than the Coast LED Lenser. I have a cavernous garage (3 1/2 car w/ 20 foot ceilings) and ran both flashlights for four hours.

When I started I compared them to my current homebrew 12volt 20w halogen spot system, which produces about 400-500 lumens. Running together the two lights put out approximately the same amount of light as the Halogen, although with less spill, which gives it approximately the same spot lighting as the halogen system. The Task Force puts out an extremely bright, focused beam of white light. The Coast put out a slightly dimmer, slightly less focused beam with a little more spill. However, the light has a greenish tint that I hated.

At an hour, the Coast had considerably dimmed. At four hours the coast was non-existent. The Task Force, on the other hand, didn't appear to have dimmed at all even after four hours.

I think the Coast is going back to the store as a return. The Task Force, on the other hand, is the REAL DEAL. $30 for a 3-watt cree. Dang. hMore to follow. Now I have to locate some C rechargeables.

vincentpaul
10-23-2008, 08:59 PM
Good luck w/ the project! :) Using NiMH's is a good idea - that light is going to be direct drive, so using NiMH's or Lithiums which hold their voltage longer will give you better performance than Alkalines.
this thread (http://bikeportland.org/forum/showthread.php?t=2149).
Let us know how the holder works out. Happy riding! :)

I don't know how I managed to miss that thread over the summer. I must have been too busy riding! You did some great writing there. Looks like my comments are old news around here!

I got the idea for the mounting setup from this page (http://nordicgroup.us/s78/flashlights.html). I just finished putting it together. Used short pieces of old narrow bicycle tire tubing instead of the large shrink tubing that that author of that page suggested. By chance I used a similar design to mount my homemade halogen lights.