MAMIL Matt - struggling on a bike lane near you soon

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Re: MAMIL Matt - struggling on a bike lane near you soon

Postby Fodder » 21 Jul 2015, 22:48

Been looking at getting a Cree for night riding in the woods. Compared to my old BLT setup they are retina searing bright.
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Re: MAMIL Matt - struggling on a bike lane near you soon

Postby Johnmcl7 » 22 Jul 2015, 18:11

I'm a big fan of the cheap Chinese Cree based lights, generally I've had no issues with reliability but for the fraction of the price they are of branded lights I can accept that.

Cree are a company that manufacture a range of LEDs which are graded similar to processors so you have different ranges and within them they are graded top to bottom for their power output.

The following links are all just examples I've quickly grabbed off ebay, I'm not recommending them or the seller.
As a starting point I'd consider some Q5 based lights such as these:

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/2x-CREE-Q5-LE ... 2355268a63

The Q5's are lower power units but they have the advantage they can be powered by AAA batteries so no extra purchases to get them running.

The next range up are the XML series and now the newer XML2's (slightly brighter, a bit more power efficient) which come in a variety of form factors. The Solarstorm version like this is popular:

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Solarstorm-XM ... 418890ead9

I'm a little wary recommending this though as the quality of the battery pack can be poor (and dangerous in some cases) plus it's not cheap to get a decent battery pack.

I use these mostly:

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Ultrafire-WF- ... 4630499ad5

They need 18650 batteries which are sort of larger li-ion versions of aa batteries, they're a standard type but not that common in the UK. It's around £20+ for a pair of decent batteries and charger which is obviously a bit much for your budget.

I started off with a Q5 light to see how I got on as I couldn't believe these lights were as good as people were claiming but sure enough they were noticeably brighter than the £65 Cateye light I previously used. They weren't quite good enough for mountain biking where at times I'm carrying a fair bit of speed and the terrain is rough so need something to light the path up so I can see what the bike is about to hit and have time to react. I probably wouldn't have bothered with anything else though if I'd only needed the lights for the hybrid.

John
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Re: MAMIL Matt - struggling on a bike lane near you soon

Postby Replicant » 22 Jul 2015, 19:05

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MAMIL Matt - struggling on a bike lane near you soon

Postby Advocate » 27 Aug 2015, 22:12

The lights from dx.com are awesome in terms of brightness for price, if I ride on the road with mine I get flashed by cars to dip the headlights. Only real downside is the battery life is quite poor on the models I have. they tend to only last about an hour.

Re pedals: Love clipless on my road bike, tried them on MTB but hated it.
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Postby matt » 28 Aug 2015, 09:29

Hey hey, good to see you back on here.

As I found out the other day, I only really need lights if I'm out on a boozy afternoon and need to get back from a bbq after 10pm. The bypass cycle track is pitch black!! I think I'll need something that I can just leave on the bike with a good battery life so they actually work when I need them rather than lighting up half of oxfordshire. I never really bike into town or anywhere where I leave the bike un-attended and unlikely to get nicked from the work bike shed.

Does that mean a Q5 set is a good bet? How long would you expend them to last when not in use?

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/2x-CREE-Q5-LE ... 1c46a02a18

Worth a punt for £8.50 I think!

regarding clipless, probably not going to invest. I realise I've made the classic mistake (which you all told me not too - my bad) of buying a jack of all trades hyrbid - absolutely fine for my commute and bumpier paths, but not a road bike or MTB it is not. had a go on my mates diamond back MTB and I miss it big time!

Will wait till next years scheme, might have another go at getting something more substantial.
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MAMIL Matt - struggling on a bike lane near you soon

Postby Johnmcl7 » 28 Aug 2015, 13:03

I think the Q5's are a good place to start as they're cheap and you can use standard batteries, I found them fine for standard use (it was only on the MTB I didn't find them powerful enough) and if you buy low discharge batteries like Eneloops they'll stay charged even if inactive for a while.

I'm surprised you think that about the hybrid, I've been using my MTB as a town bike the last week due to the road bike and car being out of action (the 29er, not the fat bike) and I hate it for that as it just feels like it's sucking away all my power and quick runs feel so much harder work. I had the road bike out yesterday when it was a bit damp and almost crashed it as the thin tyres and rim brakes are terrible in the wet. I'm trying to decide what to do for the winter though as I stopped riding my hybrid a few months back as I found it was causing knee/wrist problems and I don't want to risk bringing them back by experimenting with the bike setup. I don't need the bike daily as I previously did as I don't need to come home for Alfie every day so the durability of the belt drive isn't so necessary, I'm toying with a CX bike as they've dropped a lot in price so I could get a nice last year model with hydraulic brakes, bit longer less twitchy chassis and more room for larger tyres.

Bikes come down to personal preference though so if you prefer an MTB it's worth having a look what's for sale locally, towards the end of the summer it's not unusual to see people who have bought a bike on cycle to work, never used it and then decide to sell it coming up for winter. You could then sell yours to recoup the money.

John
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MAMIL Matt - struggling on a bike lane near you soon

Postby scarbunny » 10 Feb 2016, 12:29

So it's been 6 months hows the cycling going Matt?

I'm half tempted to think about maybe starting to look at researching getting a mountain bike. But I'm not sure I can be bothered or afford it.
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MAMIL Matt - struggling on a bike lane near you soon

Postby matt » 12 Feb 2016, 10:39

bike is in hibernation. Must get back on it as I'm now back to my same belly as last year. Might even look at bike #2 this year, depends on how much I can into longer distance runs.

Setting myself a target for 1000 km this year which would be just over twice what I managed last year.
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Postby matt » 30 Apr 2016, 00:23

need to make an amazon order up, any suggestions for pedals, going to skip the idea of shoes and stay with standard:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/MEETLOCKS%C2%A ... 7E34W1Q21J

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Wellgo-Aluminu ... 7E34W1Q21J

going to give it another summer on the current bike I think before spending big on a new whip / tyres / etc
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Postby Replicant » 30 Apr 2016, 04:56

You can't beat DMR V8 if you want some cheap flatties.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/aw/d/B001GS ... ref=plSrch

Wellgo make an even cheaper and inferior version too
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Postby Johnmcl7 » 30 Apr 2016, 15:23

I don't know what the first pedal is, the second ones are copies (as most cheap pedals are) and I've used similar ones which I thought were terrible. The spiky edges didn't seen to give much grip as they were prone to pedal slips in the wet and those spiky edges made a mess of my shins on some of the worse pedal slips. I use big flat pedals similar to what Chris has linked to and they work well for me.

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MAMIL Matt - struggling on a bike lane near you soon

Postby matt » 02 May 2016, 10:44

went with the V8's, thanks Chris! I got invited to some trail riding yesterday so ditched my plastic £2 jobbies and was so thankful. Think I was pushing my bike to the limit on the down hill sections but the V8's gave me loads of confidence my feet weren't going to slip.

John, this is where we went:
http://www.thecrownestate.co.uk/media/2 ... forest.pdf
https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Attractio ... gland.html

Haven't had a chance to look over the bike yet to see if I've broken anything but would definitely hire a MTB next time. Most of the trail could be done with slow and steady approach apart from a couple of route sections and some of the chaps we were talking too said they route difficulties were not as hard as other tracks. I couldn't see that much difference between blue and red, just more gradient changes.

Think I'll stick with this bike this year and look to upgrade next year to a more road style commuter and or a hard tail.
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MAMIL Matt - struggling on a bike lane near you soon

Postby Replicant » 02 May 2016, 20:31

The V8's are a great budget pedal.

I use a set of V12's at the minute and also have a set of original V12's which I bought new when they were first launched 15 or 20 years ago which I used to race with when I used to downhill.
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Postby matt » 04 Jun 2016, 09:50

did a 33k loop where we tried to stick mostly to bridal paths rather than road biking. Didn't end well around 28km in, we got 4 punctures between us :slap:

my friend was asking for recommendations for his MTB and remember you'd talked about them before:

http://www.tredz.co.uk/.Schwalbe-Marath ... ApiO8P8HAQ

now its scratched an itch with me too but a few places i've read say the ride becomes hard so i'm leaning towards the stnadrard tyres as they are:
http://www.tredz.co.uk/.Schwalbe-Marath ... _72335.htm
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Postby Johnmcl7 » 04 Jun 2016, 20:10

What was the cause of the punctures?
Used correctly terrain is a second weapon in your arsenal, equal to your Titan itself. Make the battlefield work for you, or you will find it working for your opponent.

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