2018 Night Riding Lights shopping recommendations

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  • 2018 Night Riding Lights shopping recommendations
  • ogden

    I ran Chinese amazon lights last year and they worked perfectly, they cost me about £50. One broke about 8 months later and they replaced it no problem.

    My mate had two lights that cost him about £400 😆


    I’ve been happily using cheep Chinese lights (Xeccon/One23) for a few years. They’ve used at least once a week, every week and have been pretty reliable for the price.

    The Chinese lights are bright and great VFM but were very ‘spotty’ with hotspot in the middle, ring of light around that and then nothing outside of that ring.

    I’ve recently splashed out on a Glowworm X2 and XS after testing a few of the offerings from Hope etc. and have been hugely impressed with them. I’m still playing around with optics (current just using the XS with 3 spot optics) and the quality of light is vastly improved, no hot spot just bright light with a nice fade to dark/no defined edge of the beam.

    Premier Icon stevied

    For about £200 you could get a bar/helmet combo from Smudge @ MTB Batteries.
    Great quality, UK backup and an allround nice guy 🙂


    I ran chineese tat for a few years on my commuter, moved to an exposure strada on the bars and joystick on the helmet last year and it’s a world of difference in terms of quality and ease of use. Cable free is a revelation.

    Premier Icon tomaso

    My current set up is two Nitefighter BT21s, one on the bar and the other on my helmet. The bar mounted light is a bit battered and seems to need some wiring repairs, so here I am asking for light recommendations – go on tell me what you’ve got and why you know best :mrgreen:

    I am torn between buying a Lumicycle/Hope/Exposure light for £200+ for overall quality, longevity and back up versus cheap Chinese tat that offers brightness and cheapness but not quality, longevity and back up.

    Premier Icon Beagleboy

    I’ve been using cheap Chinese lights for a few years. Probably on my fourth or fifth set now, but at £30-£50 a pop, they’re cheap and easy to replace when they fail. I use them as a backup / helmet light to complement my handlebar mounted Lumicycle LED.

    Reliability and longevity is of major importance to me when winter riding. I’m out in the dark for 4-5 hours on a night ride and need to know that I can rely on my lights to get me out to the trails and back.

    I’ve been using Lumicycles in some shape or form since around 2001/2 and have never had a set die on me. I snigger at the folk who snigger at me for riding with expensive lights because they could buy 5 sets of their cheap lights for the price of mine.

    Yes, you will. 😆

    Premier Icon martymac

    Ive used cheap chinese for a few years, mostly ok, apart from one of the chargers melting the first time it was used.
    I mentioned it on here, and smudge/mtb batteries offered me a replacement charger, in exchange for a donation to a charity he supports.
    The donation wouldn’t have covered the cost of a charger, so it was a very good deal for me.
    So id recommended smudge unreservedly.
    Also, my wife bought me an exposure light for my birthday last year, id recomend them too.
    Ymmv of course, if you regularly smash things to bits maybe a cheap light will be better.

    Premier Icon tomaso

    One of my batteries is from MTB Batteries and it has proved to be a good product and the back up is great. The Lumenator is a good in between option between cheap Chinese and top notch UK built.


    I’ve done the cheap ebay light vs Exposure thing now.

    Used to use a couple of generic “2000” lumen versions, the type you get on Ebay for £20 with a battery. Used them infrequently (once a week in the winter) for several years, got through 3 lamp units and 5 batteries in about 4 years I guess. In pure financial terms, that’s not too bad I guess.

    Then got a load of evans cycles vouchers that meant I could afford an Exposure Toro Mk8 earlier this year – what a difference! A really superb light.

    I now use it multiple times a week, on both road and MTB.

    Is it worth £250+ at face value? No, probably not. I would have had to got through a huge amount of the cheapie ones, but the performance difference is massive.

    I see your budget is £200 ish – I think I’d go down the Exposure or Hope route if it were me.

    Premier Icon slugrider

    Right now Rutlands are selling

    Exposure maxx d mk9 which is a 2000+ lumen smartlight for £250 which is about a third off!

    I run its predecessor and it’s awesome.

    Premier Icon SaxonRider

    I would definitely stay with non-Chinese lights – especially considering the cost is hardly any more, and you get the benefit of having a live person or company here to deal with in the event of failure.

    I bought what I thought would be a good Chinese light of Amazon last year, and it lasted all of two full rides before its battery failed completely. I could turn it on, and the light would burn normally for about 20 minutes, but then while I was out on the dark roads, it would just turn off.

    I’m looking at the candbseen roadie set for this winter, total cost: £60. MTB stuff also available.

    Try calling exposure lights. At ardrock festival . I got a maxx D light for £180. TheEx demo light with full two year warranty included.

    Plus one of friends attended a fire in a house started by a Chinese light charger

    Premier Icon fatbikeandcoffee

    I bought some 2000 lumen jobs from Torchy the battery boy on ebay, good guy, responsive to questions and then you have a UK face to talk to should anything go wrong.

    Seriously impressive service for minimal cash, think I spent £39 ish last year and its going strong.


    Premier Icon FOG

    Well I have a Chi cheapo which has lasted for three years without any problem. I don’t commute but it gets used throughout the year for mtb, road and pub rides and has never left me in darkness at the side of the road. However I bought one from a different outlet as a spare this year and it is nowhere near the quality of the first so there is obviously a hierarchy in cheap lights as well as competition between the big brands.

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