I was talking with some friends at church the other night about staying safe on the bike. This is a couple who have bent over backwards to help us since we arrived. If the weather is bad, or we aren’t feeling up to taking the bikes to church at night, this couple always offers to drive us home to save us the cost of a taxi even though we live the opposite direction from their house.
In our conversation it was mentioned that we need more lights on our bike to be visible. I have wanted to get a headlight for the bikes, but have not wanted to spend the amount of money necessary to do so. While talking about the lights I was reminded of a recent blog article I read where the guy had strapped a flashlight on his bike by using part of an old inner tube. So I had to give it a try.
At first I was thinking that I needed to find a flashlight that was appropriate for this. Then I remembered that I had a couple of $2 lights from Autozone that would be perfect. I also have an old tube that I was keeping for just such occasions.
Tonight was my first chance to use the set-up. It worked very well. It is completely secure. There is no chance that this is falling off. But I can remove it in less than 2 seconds. There is no fiddling with some complicated mount, or fearing that it is going to end up busted on the side of the road.
It is not that great as a light to show me where I am going. That could be due to the fact that the light hardly shines at all. The batteries are terribly weak. But, my purpose is just so people can see that there is an object out in front of them. I don’t plan to blind any drivers with this light, just let them know I exist.
There are a couple of things I plan to do in the future. I will try mounting it under the handlebar instead of on top. I did not have any problem with it wanting to slide around, but mounting it underneath will be just as easy and will eliminate any possibility of gravity pulling it where I don’t want it to go. The second thing I will look at doing is wrapping a bit of tire rubber around that section of the handlebars to cushion the 2 metal objects from one another. It will have the added benefit of holding it even more securely.
If you need a bike light in a pinch, or just don’t want to spend the ridiculous amounts of money the bike shops are asking for a light, give this a try.