Anyone used See.Sense lights?

For discussions about bikes and equipment.
mark a.
Posts: 1358
Joined: 8 Jan 2007, 2:47pm
Location: Surrey

See.Sense bike lights

Postby mark a. » 4 Feb 2015, 1:57pm

Anyone tried a see.sense bike light?

I need a spare "be seen" rear light for a child trailer. I'm sure there are loads of options but this one has intrigued me. It has no buttons and hence no need to remember to turn it on and off, plus it reacts to car lights etc.

With anything automatic and "intelligent" it can be horribly annoying, though, as they can remain utterly stupid or, worse, try to do something "clever" which is the opposite to what you want.

pwa
Posts: 11609
Joined: 2 Oct 2011, 8:55pm

Re: See.Sense bike lights

Postby pwa » 4 Feb 2015, 3:14pm

I couldn't see anything about UK road traffic regulations compliance, and the variation in the way these lights flash makes me wonder if they tick enough of the legal boxes. I'd choose something simpler, that you just switch on when you want to.

And to be honest, having been driven into at low speed from behind whilst having 2 rear lights on, I wouldn't tow a child in a trailer in traffic. That will upset some people, but that minor accident would have finished up in A&E if I had been towing a child.

User avatar
yakdiver
Posts: 1196
Joined: 12 Jul 2007, 2:54pm
Location: North Baddesley Hampshire

Re: See.Sense bike lights

Postby yakdiver » 4 Feb 2015, 3:54pm

Just look at the helmet strap, fat lot of good that is along with the light get a 1 watt smart one
Alias Numbnuts

axel_knutt
Posts: 1513
Joined: 11 Jan 2007, 12:20pm

Re: See.Sense bike lights

Postby axel_knutt » 4 Feb 2015, 5:58pm

I bought a Cateye TL 560 because I wanted an automatic so that I didn't have to stop mid-ride to switch on, but the problem is that midday on a cloudy winters day can be nearly as dark as dusk during mid summer. I found that the light came on at about 2PM, which was self defeating, as it was already switching on before I set off.
“I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you.”
― Friedrich Nietzsche

SA_SA_SA
Posts: 1848
Joined: 31 Oct 2009, 1:46pm

Re: See.Sense bike lights

Postby SA_SA_SA » 4 Feb 2015, 8:13pm

The featured variable flash rate is illegal:

viewtopic.php?f=5&t=90906&hilit=Re%3A+http%3A%2F%2Fseesense%3A+but+did+they%3F&start=15#p839904

I think you could reprogram them via USB to be steady or flash at fixed rate (and set brightness). They don't specify brightness in candelas, just the usual meaningless lumens.
------------You may not use this post in Cycle or other magazine ------ 8)

Vorpal
Moderator
Posts: 17907
Joined: 19 Jan 2009, 3:34pm
Location: Not there ;)

Re: See.Sense bike lights

Postby Vorpal » 4 Feb 2015, 9:30pm

mark a. wrote:Anyone tried a see.sense bike light?

I need a spare "be seen" rear light for a child trailer. I'm sure there are loads of options but this one has intrigued me. It has no buttons and hence no need to remember to turn it on and off, plus it reacts to car lights etc.

With anything automatic and "intelligent" it can be horribly annoying, though, as they can remain utterly stupid or, worse, try to do something "clever" which is the opposite to what you want.

My child trailer has a buggy handle, and I put 6 frog lights on it. That makes it clear that it's wider than a bike, but I've spares if one goes out.

The kids usually remind me about the trailer lights :)
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom

Vorpal
Moderator
Posts: 17907
Joined: 19 Jan 2009, 3:34pm
Location: Not there ;)

Re: See.Sense bike lights

Postby Vorpal » 4 Feb 2015, 9:48pm

pwa wrote:I couldn't see anything about UK road traffic regulations compliance, and the variation in the way these lights flash makes me wonder if they tick enough of the legal boxes. I'd choose something simpler, that you just switch on when you want to.

And to be honest, having been driven into at low speed from behind whilst having 2 rear lights on, I wouldn't tow a child in a trailer in traffic. That will upset some people, but that minor accident would have finished up in A&E if I had been towing a child.


Since it didn't happen, you can't possibly know what would have happened if you had been towing a trailer. As someone who has actually done a fair amount of towing a trailer, I expect that the driver would have seen the trailer and not hit you. I've never been hit by a car, though I've a few near misses close enough to shave with. Drivers give me a much wider berth when I pull the trailer than otherwise.

Being a responsible parent :D I investigated the safety of various child carrying devices before I started taking my kids around by bike. What I found was that there were so few documented incidents worldwide, there were not enough statistics to determine which method was safest. Most of the incidents documented of child injuries that resulted from children being carried or towed with an adult bicycle, were things like children being injured from falling from a seat, falling over on a bike while strapped into a seat, or getting a foot caught in spokes. Very, very few injuries as a result of road traffic crashes. My conclusion was that it was a safe form of transport. My epxerience has been that drivers slow down and take care around cyclists when they believe children are being transported. I've been tempted sometimes to haul a trailer around just for the extra care and consideration I get from drivers.
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom

pwa
Posts: 11609
Joined: 2 Oct 2011, 8:55pm

Re: See.Sense bike lights

Postby pwa » 4 Feb 2015, 9:59pm

Vorpal,

the driver who hit me was emerging from a side road at about 5mph having waited for no reason until I was level with him before starting to pull out. He nudged my rear wheel and continued to shunt me slowly across the road with me yelling at him. Maybe he was on the phone or something, I don't know. His vehicle was a transit-style van, and my bike finished up under the front of it. No serious damage done, but I thought at the time how much worse it could have been if I had been towing a child in a trailer with the child so low down. It might not just have been my bike under the van. I was wearing all the yellow stuff and light conditions were good, so I think I was dealing with a dopey, distracted driver.

User avatar
Vantage
Posts: 2704
Joined: 24 Jan 2012, 1:44pm
Location: somewhere in Bolton
Contact:

Re: See.Sense bike lights

Postby Vantage » 4 Feb 2015, 10:02pm

+1
Towing my girls in the trailer, drivers gave me so much room that it was as if I was transporting a ticking nuclear bomb.
2 'normal' lights on each end of the handle and one in the centre made it clear I was towing a wide load. No idea if the flag did any good but I never got hit.
Bill


“Ride as much or as little, or as long or as short as you feel. But ride.” ~ Eddy Merckx
It's a rich man whos children run to him when his pockets are empty.

mark a.
Posts: 1358
Joined: 8 Jan 2007, 2:47pm
Location: Surrey

Re: See.Sense bike lights

Postby mark a. » 4 Feb 2015, 10:39pm

Huh. I had hoped that a UK bicycle light company would be able to produce a UK legal light. Ah well. (Not that anyone actually really cares about legality, but that's another story.)

For the prices of one of those rear lights I could get 2 or 3 Knog ones, so I probably won't get one, but it looked interesting.

John_S
Posts: 329
Joined: 16 Sep 2014, 10:34pm

Re: See.Sense bike lights

Postby John_S » 5 Feb 2015, 10:48am

Hi mark a.

I'm afraid that I can't comment yet on what the See.Sense bike lights are like when placed on a childs trailer but I do have them and use them on my daily commute.

I got the lights this year because prior to a house move earlier this year I lived in a city with only about a two mile well lit urban commute on quiet residential roads without the need to use any main roads at all. This meant that I had scrimped a bit on my financial outlay on lights and relied upon some fairly out dated and pretty cheap lights however they served me well for the purpose so I'm not complaining.

However since moving I now have a 20 mile roundtrip commute using a mixture of unlit rural roads, busy main B roads and main commuter A roads into a city. Basically my entire route is busy with traffic and some of the roads I use are 60mph limit roads and so in the interests of personal safety I decided to spend some money on improving my lights.

I bought both the front and rear See.Sense lights as a be seen light and I've been really impressed with their performance so far throughout the winter! I would not use them as my only light but I have a Trelock LS950 as my main headlight to see with, an additional rear light on solid always on mode plus a helmet mounted light. As a be seen light I think that the See.Sense lights do a really good job in alerting other road users to your presence. Also the fact that they operate intelligently this does seem to save battery life when compared to my other rear light which is a Moon Comet and on which the battery life is not very long however maybe I'm being slightly unfair because the Moon Comet is on permanently and not flashing but I do seem to have to constantly charge the Moon whereas that doesn't feel the case with the See.Sense light.

The concerns that I had before buying the light were mounting it on my bike and I thought that it's worth mentioning because you want to mount it on a childs trailer. The front is easy because it's a tool free design and the rubber strap just goes around your handlebar. You could do the same with the rear on a seat post but this was not an option for me because I use a pannier rack with a rack top bag which totally obscures the seat post from view. I was told that one option that I could try was to use a moulding agent called Sugru (there's info about it on their website http://sugru.com/guides/mount-a-see-sense-bike-light-to-an-aerodynamic-bike-frame ) to make a mould which would then fit onto the back plate on my pannier rack. However whilst this should in theory (because I've not actually tried it myself) work for some people it didn't suit my needs because I wanted to be able to use the light on two different bikes which have different pannier racks and different plates on the back of each pannier. Also I had the Moon Comet fixed to the rear pannier plate at the back of the rack anyway.

Therefore I actually use the supplied rubber strap to attach it to a strap on the back of my rack top bag and through 4 months of daily winter use so far it's performed well and I'm very pleased with it! I'm not a cycle magazine review and I've not had tonnes of lights over the years so I don't have a wealth of other lights to compare it directly against from personal experience so I've no idea whether it's better or worse than other light options.

However as you asked a question about this light I just wanted to say that having had this light for several months now I'm really impressed with it as a be seen light and for me supporting a UK company was also a bonus. I am planning on trying to get a childs bike trailer in the future and so if that plan works out I'll report back one day on how I get on using the See.Sense light on a bike trailer but my apologies as that doesn't help you right now.

I for one am a happy customer and I'm glad that I gave the See.Sense lights a chance because I've been impressed with their performance as a usb chargeable be seen light.

Good luck with finding the right light for your childs bike trailer!

John

Vorpal
Moderator
Posts: 17907
Joined: 19 Jan 2009, 3:34pm
Location: Not there ;)

Re: See.Sense bike lights

Postby Vorpal » 5 Feb 2015, 11:32am

Even if the See.sense is not road-legal, you can still use it. But to be in compliance with the law, it can't be your only light.

lighting regulations... http://www.ctc.org.uk/cyclists-library/ ... egulations
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom

User avatar
[XAP]Bob
Posts: 17178
Joined: 26 Sep 2008, 4:12pm

Re: See.Sense bike lights

Postby [XAP]Bob » 5 Feb 2015, 2:25pm

Vorpal wrote:Even if the See.sense is not road-legal, you can still use it. But to be in compliance with the law, it can't be your only light.

lighting regulations... http://www.ctc.org.uk/cyclists-library/ ... egulations

Not sure that's actually true...

The RVLR is quite prescriptive about flashing lights..
Lamps to show a steady light

13.—(1) Save as provided in paragraph (2), no vehicle shall be fitted with a lamp which automatically emits a flashing light.

(2) Paragraph (1) does not apply in respect of–

(a)a direction indicator;
(b)a headlamp fitted to an emergency vehicle;
(c)a warning beacon or special warning lamp;
(d)a lamp or illuminated sign fitted to a vehicle used for police purposes;
(e)a green warning lamp used as an anti-lock brake indicator; or
(f)lamps forming part of a traffic sign.


Clearly there is an amendment I've missed wrt cycle lighting - but the overriding system here is that nothing shalt flash unless otherwise permitted.
A shortcut has to be a challenge, otherwise it would just be the way. No situation is so dire that panic cannot make it worse.
There are two kinds of people in this world: those can extrapolate from incomplete data.

SA_SA_SA
Posts: 1848
Joined: 31 Oct 2009, 1:46pm

Re: See.Sense bike lights

Postby SA_SA_SA » 5 Feb 2015, 2:50pm

[XAP]Bob wrote:Clearly there is an amendment I've missed wrt cycle lighting - but the overriding system here is that nothing shalt flash unless otherwise permitted.


CJ mentions via the link in my last post why your missing amendment forbids the off the shelf operation of the see sense
http://forum.ctc.org.uk/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=93961#p864005

but allows normal fixed freq flashing lamps both as "approved" (>= 4cd and no steady mode) or just additional lighting
------------You may not use this post in Cycle or other magazine ------ 8)

User avatar
[XAP]Bob
Posts: 17178
Joined: 26 Sep 2008, 4:12pm

Re: See.Sense bike lights

Postby [XAP]Bob » 5 Feb 2015, 3:20pm

Can you copy the specific amendment text/link into this thread as well. Just to make it easier to find in the future ;)
A shortcut has to be a challenge, otherwise it would just be the way. No situation is so dire that panic cannot make it worse.
There are two kinds of people in this world: those can extrapolate from incomplete data.