Friday, November 16, 2007

The light...

Don't tell Mr. Potasky about these photos. I did take photography class in high school. I really liked the class and did quite well in it, but I will introduce you to some mistakes today. Someone has asked about my light and hub. This will be my last post about it because my next post needs to be about parenting, I have lots of questions.

So the hub is the top of the line Shimano dynamo. It's got a name made up of nothing but random numbers and letters so that nobody will ever remember it. It's a step above the Nexus (I think that is what the lower quality model is, but I also think of shampoo when I see that word). The SON hub is a step above the Shimano that I got, but I was unwilling to pay a lot of extra money for a little better performance. In reality, I can hardly tell that there's more resistance, but I like to blame my slowness on the drag of the new wheel, I know I was faster before the new hub... although it still takes about 45 minutes to get to school every day.

The light I got was a D-lumatec, or something like that. I had a few criteria that I needed 1) I wanted an LED, 2) It needed to be bright enough to see the road and 3) it needed to have a capacitor so that when I came to a stop sign my lights wouldn't go out. This light has all three things and I"m extremely pleased with it. I can finally see the road! I took some pictures to show how bright it is, they didn't turn out that great, but I"m posting them anyway.

Above is the inside of our back door illuminated by my old light.
Above is the inside of the back door with the new light. You will notice that the door handle is all blurry like it was a long exposure with a moving camera. It was. You see, in order to "turn on" the new light, you have to spin the wheel. In order to spin the wheel you have to pick up the front end of the bike. So it took two people to take this picture and still my "tripod" was not stationary (that was my wife's fault, I'm sure).Did you know that there was a feature somewhere so that you can turn pictures sideways... I should try it sometime. Anyway, you can see the old light on the handlebars and the new light is mounted behind the front brake caliper. Neither of the lights are on, but if you take a picture using flash into a reflective material it creates a bad picture, as you see above.
I really wanted to show what it looks like to be riding with the new vs. old lights on the road. This was my first attempt at taking a picture while riding (remember that to stop would mean that the light goes out except for the standby light which is not as bright). Well, somehow in taking the camera out of my pocket I pushed some buttons so that when I took the picture I saw in the viewfinder the camera was counting down from 10. So I aimed up the road, but by the time it got to 3, I noticed a car was coming... that was sort of awkward. Oh, and the flash was on. So this is what you see with flash photography with the new light and an oncoming car. It really isn't a good representation of what you really see.

So, I turned the counter thing off and the flash off so I could really get a good picture while riding with the new light. I should have waited for the passing car to get further ahead of me, but you can see the glow of the light in front of me, that's the new light with like a 30 second exposure, handheld on my handlebars while riding down the street. Riding with it, it seems a lot brighter than that. I'm not going to try any more to get a picture to compare the two lights, I am admitting defeat and leaving it alone.


Emily Allan Wood said...

Lol. You are funny.

Anonymous said...

I have a Sturmey Archer front dynamo hub and I built a wheel for my commuter bike, your light set sounds idea, so where did you get it? Please post reply comment on my blog, Zonkerfiles dot blogspot you know the rest.

BTW great blog! I applaud your efforts!