Here is a light comparison of my bike with:
- No lights
- Cheap lights
- Good lights
"Good lights" = adds a Planet Bike SuperFlash to the Blackburn rear and uses a Light & Motion Stella 300 Dual (rechargeable Lithium-Ion battery) on the front.
Conclusions from this demo:
- Cheap lights work okay (so long as you keep feeding them batteries) front and rear, but have basically no side visibility.
- Cheap front lights drown in headlights.
- Good lights work great front and rear and provide some side visibility.
- Good lights continue to be seen even when flooded by headlights or competing with sign lights, etc.
- The Down Low Glow provides some flippin' AWESOME side-vis and a wide spot beneath you, discouraging cars from getting too close.
- Also note that I wore dark blue jeans and a black jacket for this demo. While I do own neon cycling clothing, I don't rely on it as my (only) source of visibility. It's best to have your BIKE always be visible so that you can wear whatever you fancy.
Notes on reflective parts (which I didn't include in the video, oops!):
- Reflective sidewalls on front tire (Schwalbe Marathon)
- Reflective/light-up ankle strap
- Orange reflective tape on frame
- Blue reflective "slap bracelets" on head tube
- Reflective detail on trunk bag
- Reflective rear triangle (with a dowel slid in to hold its shape)