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Super Bright Flashlight for Bike Light

I've been experimenting with a lighting setup that is as bright as a Dinotte, but way cheaper. It is based on a replacement LED bulb that an inventor I work with has just come out with. With this insert, a 60 lumen Surefire flashlight becomes a 240 lumen monster. The batteries also last longer, due to a heat sink that improves efficiency.

This light is brighter than a car light’s headlights, because I've driven at night in a car, shined the flashlight ahead onto the road, and you can see the spot in the pavement illuminated by the car headlights. It is unbelievably bright. I was camping next to a huge rock outcropping and I lit up the whole rock with this little tiny flashlight. When I drive down the street on my bike in the morning, all the reflective signs bounce light back at me from at least one block away. I took it into an REI store and compared it side by side to a Dinotte, and they were about equal.

Here is the setup on my bike, the Catrike recumbent shown in posts below:

catrike-sep-08-00620

The parts are shown in the picture below, with where to get them listed below the picture. The picture below shows two Surefire flashlight setups. One has a converter, available on ebay for about $8, which allows it to take the longer 17500 batteries, which last longer. The shorter 17670 regular batteries last about 1.5 hours, the larger 17500 ones about 2-2.5 hours.

 
p1010098

p10100971

Flashlight Setup 1: Surefire 6P flashlight (about $60) (or SureFire 6Z, C2, M2 and G2 or Cabela's 6 v flashlight ($32); from Surefire, Amazon, ebay or Cabela's.

Malkoff M60 insert: about $50: (replaces the fragile bulb that comes with the flashlight), from Tactical Design Labs (http://www.tdlabs.com/ if link doesn't work, under the "New" menu tab.) They are selling the Malkoff device as an upgrade for police, who use Surefire flashlights extensively. They say "It will easily illuminate objects at 350+ feet and will blind opponents within a 100 foot radius." I believe a Malkoff equipped flashlight will easily to that.

Surefire converter (extension tube), ebay for $8, allows use of the longer 17500 batteries.

2 Batteries, AW Brand-17500-Protected-Rechargeable-Lithium-Battery from
Lighthound.com, $11 each.

Flashlight Setup 2:

Same flashlight body, and Malkoff insert (LED setup)

1 17670 AW Protected Battery,which is available from Lighthound for $11.

Fenix 360 Bike Mount,
light holder, $15, this is high quality in fit and finish, but rattles. A small rubber band between the top half and bottom half stops the rattle. A no-name brand is also pretty decent, on ebay for $4 shipping, titled:
New Bike/Bicycle LED Flash Light Mount Clamp Holder. These are a little loose on the Surefire, so I put a section of inner tube around the flashlight body, for a tighter fit.

Charger: Ultrafire WF-139 Charger for 3.7 volt Lithium Battery Charger, from Lighthound.com, $18.00 (charges several sizes of batteries)

I hope someone tries this setup and tells me how it works for you.


H. B. Smith Steam Tricycle

New Jersey manufacturer Hezekiah Bradley Smith patented a steam powered tricycle in 1889.  He also built the American Star Bicycle, which sold for $150 in a time when an average income for a man was $500.  Smith did very well with his manufacturing business, and was elected to Congress in 1879.  He purchased the town of Shreveville New Jersey and invested vast sums of money to make it an industrial center.  He renamed the town Smithville,  and the town still hosts the  company Smith founded, the Smith Machine  Co. Hb_smith_steam_tricycle


Long Wheelbase Recumbent Bike

One type of recumbent bike is called a long wheelbase recumbent, and this is an example which was patented in 1981.  There are several commercial models using this general configuration, such as excellent bikes by RANS.

Lwb_recumbent_bike

This model also has under seat steering, with a linkage to the front wheel, which is still a popular mode of steering.

Underseat_steering_recumbent