Thursday, November 18, 2010

Bicycling at Night

You need a front light and at least a rear reflector and reflectors to the side visible for 600 feet to be legal at night.  I use 3 blinky lights in the rear and a very bright front light.  But there are other features that really help you to be visible at night.  They are:

1) A retro-reflexive bead on your tire.  I use Schwalbe Marathon tires on my winter commuter bike.  They have a 3/8 inch reflexive bead that really stands out as you see by the photo below.

2) Never mind the reflexive striping on my jacket.  Although it helps, these photos were taken with a flash, hence the bright reflection.  When you are riding in urban areas at night most cars have their low beam lights on so the reflexive tape won't show so much.  But reflexive material below your saddle is quite visible.  The photo below shows just how important it is to have pedal reflectors and pant straps that are reflective.  In fact, these two items are probably twice as important as the reflective tape on the jacket.  As I pedal, the reflectors on my feet and legs bob up and down and scream out to any car coming up behind me as long as they have their lights on!
 The jacket is a bomber jacket from Alert Shirts.  $44.95 on sale.  Check them out at this link

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