Solar Head light

Dan

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May 25, 2008
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I had been meaning to try solar yard lights for months and just got around to it. Works about as good as you would think. In total dark great. Love the free part of solar and think it has great "kewl factor" I put it on the build the Baby's Momma calls the "Electric avocado" (Read Kulana Moon Dog Green Cruiser) Great bike for a motor with awesome tires. A bit small though.
Anyway, great cheap way to be legal here in CT. Not that I have met one cop who is in any way interested in bothering me. Mostly they look up at me, then back down or away. Any conversations I have had with them, they just sort of grin, ask the regular questions, MPG?, top speed?, etc. Then are on their way. Love the nutmeg state.^5
 

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Dan

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Thanks guys. I just did a long ride threw Hartford which was an adventure in it self, snork. But light did well and cars pulling out defiantly saw me and either hurried or let me go. So it did its job well enough there. The bracket needs work. It is to long and the plastic tongue that attaches light to bracket won't last long as is.

The set of lights came with 10 little round lights and 2 that look like head lights. So as soon as I find some clear red plastic, will fabricate a bracket for a tail light.

The rechargeable batteries in theses lights are supposed to last 500 charges and the bulbs 20 yrs. Really doubt it, but even half that is more then I would expect.

To charge them, light has to be in the "on" position in sunlight but only illuminates in the dark. Really cool lil censer turns it on automatically. Just went to the garage for a smoke and bike was lit up as I had forgotten to turn it off.

Some day would like to try and get a stator to charge a battery. It could use the front tire to turn the coils, I think
eBay Motors: STATOR ASSEMBLY (MAGNETO) 49CC 4-STROKE SCOOTER (item 330214261567 end time Jul-21-08 13:42:21 PDT)
 
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Dan

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Had to go out to check what brand name. They are Westinghouse and I can't find "Made in china" on the box or on them. They are supposed to work for 10 hrs on a single charge but I have yet to test it. They are not bright enough to see with any back ground light. But do get you seen quite well. (The bracket I threw together vibrates to the point they almost strobe) They have 3 LEDs in the reflector dome which is diffused into little squares rather then smooth/rounded conical shaped. With better focus, would work much better. I am thinking of using 2 of these on the rear axle as tail lights with red film or plastic and solar powered spot light for the headlight or finally getting around to sending for Norman's light.
Gets some funny reactions from folks when you point out that it is solar.
 

Dan

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May 25, 2008
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Was tooling around looking for some thing else and re-found this thread. but thought this was worth revisiting. Any one try solar yard lights for MBs?

The only problem with mine was that the internal reflection is fragmented and could not find a true solar powered "spot" lite.

The other day, saw a bike with exactly what is pictured above but purpose made for bikes.
 

2door

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Sep 15, 2008
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Solar. Hmmm, that means the sun, right? So, are your lights really as bright as the sun, Dan? That could be a traffic hazard, don't ya thunk?

2008, huh? Wow, have we really been here that long?

Tom
 

BarelyAWake

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Jul 21, 2009
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Was tooling around looking for some thing else and re-found this thread. but thought this was worth revisiting. Any one try solar yard lights for MBs?

The only problem with mine was that the internal reflection is fragmented and could not find a true solar powered "spot" lite.

The other day, saw a bike with exactly what is pictured above but purpose made for bikes.
While not for MB use, I have in the past repurposed solar yard lights (sailboat, boom flood & mast light) & found they're quite handy w/a bit of tinkerin'. Often glued together w/a "no user serviceable parts inside" mentality - this simply isn't true, I'd suggest gutting one to see what you've got. Typically comprised of little more then a photoelectric sensor (can be removed/replaced with a SPST single pole, single throw on/off for this app), the photovoltaic panel, LED & usually two 1.5v cells for 3v DC (AA batteries or equivalent).

While ofc there's some variance from manufacturer & models, generally a very beneficial upgrade would be to replace the included batteries with any rechargeable NiMH cells, 2000 mAh - 2200 mAh AA type would likely be the same physical size (for fitting inside the case) yet have a possible two to three times the reserve capacity. If remote battery location is possible, rechargeable C or D cells would provide far greater reserve. A heads-up however, it's not uncommon for the stock units to have soldered connections - obv use care when applying heat to batteries to desolder if needful lol

Unfortunately with the limited wattage, there's not a lot of options for increasing lumen output to the extent of a viable headlight, but there's still quite a lot of options in better LEDs, lenses & reflectors - for this, flashlights can make excellent, low cost donors.... the only challenge the fit, this is where a dremel may be handy, or ruin everything depending heh :p

There's also solar "security lighting" but as they're often far larger & include motion detection, they may not be a cost effective solution compared to a DIY alternative, such as acquiring the components separately & building from scratch.

The lawn lights have the decided advantage of being cheap & plentiful - perfect for some quality time abomineering :D