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 'Lighting'

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Waspie
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PostSubject: 'Lighting'   Fri 03 Jun 2011, 05:09

Now the sun is upon us, (here in the UK at least).

I have started to ride with my main beam on. Only when the sun is behind me. (So obviously day time only.) I feel the additional illumination with the sun at my back has increased my visibility for drivers coming towards me.

Since I have started this I have not had anyone attempting to overtake vehicles traveling towards me thereby endangering me. No one has flashed me or indicated my side and main beam combination is too bright.

Does anyone else use this technique? I reckon any aid we have to increase our two wheeled road presence a definite advantage.
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dspevack
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Fri 03 Jun 2011, 08:11

In the states, daytime lighting for motorcycles is a requirement.
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MikeO
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Fri 03 Jun 2011, 08:49

Can you legally run a headlight modulator in the UK?

Unfortunately, no.
The only flashing lights allowed are indicators unless it's an emergency vehicle.
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Buickguy
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Fri 03 Jun 2011, 09:00

I usually ride with my main beam on during the daylight hours.
I reserve the dipped beam for nighttime use.
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Meldrew
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Fri 03 Jun 2011, 09:31

Hi viz gear is a good idea, but here in the UK, Health and Safety regulations mean high viz clothing is compulsory for lots of jobs and has lost a lot of visual impact. Joe Public can also buy hi viz gear cheaply from just about any street market.

It's worn by road construction and repair crews, plant operators, delivery couriers, refuse collectors, truck drivers, building construction workers, just about anyone working down a hole, charity collectors, cyclists, dog walkers, joggers, rail maintenance crews, parking wardens, yobs doing their community service work, the bloke who used to come round to read your gas meter, a hi viz vest is usually de rigeur for any self important saddo wandering round with a clipboard, and of course motorcyclists.
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Waspie
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Fri 03 Jun 2011, 10:29

Agree 100% Meldrew, and most motorcycles have dipped beam as standard these days. So a motorcyclist riding down a busy street, Hi-Vis and dipped beam on isn't going to really stand out.

So the addition of Hi-beam in daylight is something I have adapted to stand out that little bit more.

On this board alone we have had several near misses of late and an actual near fatal SMIDSY.

So Be Seen!!!!!!
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Waspie
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Fri 03 Jun 2011, 12:03

Bigbird, it is the amount of folk now wearing Hi-Vis in the UK that neutralises its effectiveness. As Meldrew pointed out, even dog walkers wear the stuff. Delivery drivers wear it - nigh on every one!!!! Kinda nulls out the whole point of it for us riders.

ROSPA, a road safety organisation wrote an article about light blindness, (including Hi Vis,) In that if every one were to adopt lighting/Hi-Vis clothing all the time then it wouldn't be 'highly' visible in that it would simply blend in and the eye wouldn't see it as any out of the ordinary because it wasn't an uncommon sight.

Re your comment about Police forces etc. Here in the UK it is worn because the Health and Safety executive tell us we have to!!! HAve they done any research into it - Nope!
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Meldrew
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Fri 03 Jun 2011, 12:22

I have an Icon Hi Viz Military-Spec vest, all my bike suits, helmets, and even gloves have reflective patches, we've been headlights on here in the UK for many years now, but it still comes down to my own reactions when dealing with the idiots you come across every day.

As for being mistaken for a police officer or vehicle dressed up in hi viz gear, bikers here had the same theory years ago when white fibreglass fairings were common, and you could add to the illusion by wearing a white helmet..

Nowadays from the back, what we initially think is the familiar red and yellow hi viz reflective chevrons of Police, Fire & Rescue, or Ambulance vehicles, could be a Coastguard, Mountain Rescue, Bomb Disposal, Highways Agency, or one of dozens of company vehicles with the same hi viz reflective stripes at the rear. So it's a lot different riding around on our crowded little island, and the attitude of thinking everyone else on the road is a dickhead apart from you will serve you well.
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honda_silver
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Fri 03 Jun 2011, 13:19

Waspie wrote:
I have started to ride with my main beam on. Only when the sun is behind me. (So obviously day time only.) I feel the additional illumination with the sun at my back has increased my visibility for drivers coming towards me.

From "Proficient Motorcycling", the sun's shadow points to the dangerous blind-spot.

Waspie wrote:
Does anyone else use this technique?

I replaced both my halogen bulbs with HID bulbs, which greatly helps my visibility both in distance and standing out.

When I approach any vehicle I try to counter-steer toward the vehicle then counter-steer away from the vehicle at least twice which helps two ways.

1) The straight on headlight is stronger than the peripheral headlight. The light difference is significant and perceivable.

2) The multiple counter-steer create a weaving effect. One of the strongest trait of all living creatures is "fight-or-flight" (unless someone is not paying attention in which case someday they could win a Darwin Award). The weave movement helps in multiple ways

a) creates movement which help me to be more visible to people watching

b) some people may only pay attention to a narrow portion of road (since they are typically looking for car/trucks which are wider), so the weave causes you to cover more road width

c) in your example it would allow me to weave in and out of the blind sunspot

d) I have driven several cars where the roof supports create a small blind spots without the drivers realizing ... so anything to get out of the vehicle blindspot helps.
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Windrider
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Fri 03 Jun 2011, 14:07

Bill, I like your ideas. I ride with the high beams on and wear bright colors, my Helment is a dard red.
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honda_silver
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Fri 03 Jun 2011, 15:37

Windrider wrote:
I ride with the high beams on and wear bright colors, my Helment is a dard red.

I wear a white helmet, my gear (Hi-Viz with reflective tape) and my 3M Solas tape ... everyone's first opinion is Police Exclamation
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Meldrew
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Fri 03 Jun 2011, 16:01

honda_silver wrote:
I wear a white helmet, my gear (Hi-Viz with reflective tape) and my 3M Solas tape ... everyone's first opinion is Police Exclamation

You can only assume that, you don't know for certain.

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Buickguy
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Fri 03 Jun 2011, 17:00

Waspie wrote:
Bigbird, it is the amount of folk now wearing Hi-Vis in the UK that neutralises its effectiveness. As Meldrew pointed out, even dog walkers wear the stuff. Delivery drivers wear it - nigh on every one!!!! Kinda nulls out the whole point of it for us riders.

Much like car alarms in the US. At one time they would attract attention with an unusual sound and flashing lights.
Now that they are ubiquitous, no one pays attention any more.
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honda_silver
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Fri 03 Jun 2011, 18:48

Meldrew wrote:
You can only assume that, you don't know for certain.

When I am stopped and if people see me in my gear ... if I am asked a question the first question is typically ... Are you a policeman or fireman?

At night or if the light shines on my windshield, cars coming at my direction will hit their brakes ( as observed in reflections and observed by other drivers) due to where I put my white reflective tape.

At night, cars coming behind will typically slow down behind me (due to red oscillating or flashing for braking and reflective tape) ... they are very slow to pass me when they finally are about even to me they speed up and continue because it was not till that point they determined I was not police.

I am curious if have you ever noticed a Police vehicle without it lights on ... either at in the distance, or unmarked, sitting on the side of the road before you pass it. It could have been the shape, a reflection, or visible equipment. People tend to scan for Police vehicles ... even hitting their brakes when they are doing the speed limit.

All they have to do is notice anything on my SilverWing
- white helmet
- white reflective tape throughout
- yellow reflective tape on my gear
- LEDs visible from the side and back

So the more visible I am, the more people must access their risk. Even if they later determine I am not the Police ... they still had to access what I am.

I plan on adding a small snippet of reflective tape to the wheels ... small enough to create a white flash to vehicles approaching me from the sides
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Waspie
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Fri 03 Jun 2011, 18:51

Buickguy wrote:
Waspie wrote:
Bigbird, it is the amount of folk now wearing Hi-Vis in the UK that neutralises its effectiveness. As Meldrew pointed out, even dog walkers wear the stuff. Delivery drivers wear it - nigh on every one!!!! Kinda nulls out the whole point of it for us riders.

Much like car alarms in the US. At one time they would attract attention with an unusual sound and flashing lights.
Now that they are ubiquitous, no one pays attention any more.

Exactly. Smile
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trouble1100
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Fri 03 Jun 2011, 21:04

The theory says that adding a "triangle of light" to the front of a motorcycle will increase its visibility. Yellow or amber will enhance the pattern and make you stand out from all the other traffic.

I have mounted LED’s with yellow lenses low on the front forks to mimic the Goldwing, this makes the unusual triangle shape which catches cagers’ attention.

I have done the fog light thing since the early 70’s on my vehicles and is a very good attention getter. When I work the graveyard shift the person I relieve knows that it’s me checking in at the guard shack -- he says I look like an alien space ship.

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masscoot
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Sat 04 Jun 2011, 00:30

honda_silver wrote:
2) The multiple counter-steer create a weaving effect. One of the strongest trait of all living creatures is "fight-or-flight" (unless someone is not paying attention in which case someday they could win a Darwin Award). The weave movement helps in multiple ways

a) creates movement which help me to be more visible to people watching.

Great point Bill. I've also noticed that when you weave toward them (and their watching) they will make positive eye contact, something I do to every driver who may cross my driving line.

Great stable trouble1100, and cute dog!
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buddy19520
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Sat 11 Jun 2011, 00:27

Ron, I've done the same thing with lights attached to the fork. I wanted the separation from the headlight; some motorcycles with light bars just look like one big light from a distance. I think three separate lights stand out more.

Bill, great idea on the weave. I've been doing that (when I remember) for the last few months, and it does seem to cause drivers to take notice.

As a general note - I have parked my Silverwing on my street (center stand, engine running, low beam) and walked 100-150 feet away. Even though I have adjusted my light to properly light the road at night, it really did NOT stand out very much in the daytime. My rule is to either run my fork lights (50 watts each), or run the high beam during the day. The high beam stands out much more than the low.

Even with the additional wattage, my battery has never complained or needed trickle charging.
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Meldrew
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Mon 20 Jun 2011, 02:49

OK, points out of 10, I like the Schuberth reading light mounted on your C3 helmet, nice jacket, and vest, decent sized saddlebags, and from a personal view the top case could be a lot bigger maybe Givi E52 or E55. I myself stopped riding in jeans may years ago, and I've read in a couple of recent UK forum posts of paramedics and A&E staff having trouble cutting off Kevlar lined jeans.

So I'll give you an excellent 8, and as you're a Canadian I may need your advice about poutine later on this year. Smile
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wingnprayer
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Mon 20 Jun 2011, 17:48

Ironically even the police sometimes suffer from SMIDSY ('Sorry mate I didn't see ya') as this clip shows:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8yoUaH6wGLs
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MadDog
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Sat 26 Aug 2017, 14:00

Has anybody any ideas about having to change direction of dip for France or am I being paranoid
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MikeO
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Sat 26 Aug 2017, 16:53

The Silverwing dips straight ahead so no adjustment is needed.

The only difference between the 'old' models sold in Europe and the UK is the speedometer.
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oldwingguy
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Sat 26 Aug 2017, 18:40

Stateside we were encouraged to ride with the headlights on while we still had switches to shut them off, people said wow that's a good idea, problem is like the hi vis yellow NOW EVERYONE HAS THEIR LIGHTS ON. Shocked
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Sun 27 Aug 2017, 03:36

Thanks Mikeo
That's something else off my check list,I'm looking forward to my trip it'll be the first riding in France for some years. The last time I rode down to the Algarve in Portugal not going that far this time.
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Sun 27 Aug 2017, 03:44

It's a pleasure; have a good trip!
Check the French Rules about having reflective stickers on your crash helmet; I read it as having to have one front and back and one each side. Amazon sell packs of four.

The business of riding with headlights on full-beam, something many riders here think is their divine right, is covered in the Highway Code:

Rule 114

You MUST NOT
•use any lights in a way which would dazzle or cause discomfort to other road users, including pedestrians, cyclists and horse riders
•use front or rear fog lights unless visibility is seriously reduced. You MUST switch them off when visibility improves to avoid dazzling other road users.

In the light of remarks made recently about my driving-lights, I must make some adjustments to them.
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Meldrew
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Sun 27 Aug 2017, 04:20

The first time I toured in France was in the early Eighties on a MZ TS 250 Supa that had a 6v Tungsten headlight. I stuck a bit of tape over the dip in the time honoured fashion for the trip.

The one and only time I rode at night and it was at least a hundred miles on RN roads, I was constantly and deliberately dazzled by oncoming French car drivers simply because my headlight had a white beam. It didn't matter even if I was cornering at the time, every Pierre or Pascal that noticed that white headlight just lit me up with their full beams regardless.

Back then French vehicles had either yellow filter on their headlights or yellow coated bulbs fitted. There was no mention of them in the 'Touring In France' articles I read, nothing from the AA, the BMF, or the bumf from my insurance provider.
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Sun 27 Aug 2017, 07:38

I've just re-read my last post: by 'here' I mean 'in the UK', not the forum.
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Scootypuff Snr
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Sun 27 Aug 2017, 08:08

MadDog wrote:
Thanks Mikeo
That's something else off my check list,I'm looking forward to my trip it'll be the first riding in France for some years. The last time I rode down to the Algarve in Portugal not going that far this time.

MadDog
When are you thinking of going? I just did 3 days to the Vendee region  (sadly mostly on peagé due to time constraints) to get a caravan (read site office/builders shower) on my build plot.

Unfortunately I buggered my back moving the pikey tin hut so now laid up in UK  knackered.

The 32° heat was lovely. Giving it some giggle stick around the D & C routes proved interesting on several occasions meeting combines and other agricultural machinery coming the other way.

The S/Wing seat is still tops for comfort.

Didn't bother with RR as 1200 miles is lame by standards here Razz

Back on topic i only use full beam when filtering. I've taken to fitting fog lamps since 2014 and despite the legality ride with them on if fitted
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Sun 27 Aug 2017, 08:54

Helmet reflective stickers here:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Scotchlite-Reflective-Helmet-Stickers-reflects/dp/6041346519/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1503838358&sr=8-1&keywords=helmet+reflective+stickers
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MadDog
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PostSubject: Hope now I,ve everything sorted   Sun 27 Aug 2017, 13:12

Ta muchly for all advice,I think I've got it all covered ...GB sticker ,helmet reflectors, Breathlyser, triangle , just find the infor on SatNav's a bit stupid .Off
on the 11th Sept to Newhaven for Dieppe
MadDog
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MadDog
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Sun 27 Aug 2017, 13:20

Forgot to mention tyre sealer installed , new drive belt , dr pulley rollers , and I must mention about police attude to phone satnavs they seem to think because its on a phone you maybe using it to use as a phone so gonna install Lifesaver app it blocks incoming calls etc ,so basically its not used as a phone .
Better to be safe than sorry ,
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Sun 27 Aug 2017, 14:57

HiViz jacket/tabard in case you break down?
I don't think motorcyclists need to carry triangles.
If you are going to use Toll Roads take cash - it's cheaper than using a card.

Apologies if you know all this.
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Scootypuff Snr
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PostSubject: Re: 'Lighting'   Sun 27 Aug 2017, 15:38

Newhaven- Dieppe my favourite crossing route (so relaxed & unofficious)
MikeO is right must have hi viz now in case of breakdown.

French police seem to go out of their way NOT to stop motorcycles. If using sat nav mustn't have camera alert on (probably applies to phones as well) however French police have no power to turn your sat nav on to check if you flick it off before they talk to you.

The bridge at Le Havre has a dedicated free motorcycle lane on one crossing but the one at Le Man off the peagé doesn't work (however relaxed French drivers let you pull in front to pay, just imagine that in UK)

I got caught going in the No motorcycle lane paying €36 (car rate) rather than the €22. Teach me to rush

Have a great trip
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