Dynamo hubs use the rotation of the front wheel to produce electrical current. The bike hermit doesn’t know how they do this. It is an unknowable mystery of the universe. That hasn’t kept him from using Schmidt brand dynamo lighting systems on two of his bikes and one on Sky King’s bike too. When he owned a bike shop he sold and installed many systems also.
Schmidt dynamo hubs and headlights are made in Germany and they are designed to give at least 50,000 trouble free kilometers of service. They are heavier and have more spinning resistance than standard hubs, but the resistance is less than that of other brands of dynamo hubs. The bike hermit requires a reliable source of light that is always available and not dependent on remembering to buy or recharge batteries. Those who know the bike hermit, know why.
The Schmidt E6 halogen primary headlight Chief has carried on previous tours has been joined by a secondary E6. And it looks awesome.
According to the information that came with the secondary light, full brightness of both lights will only be reached at speeds of 16 kph and upwards. Then, by rights, there should be twice the light of one alone. At speeds less than 16 kph, switching off the secondary light will result in the best light output. Which is fine because at lower speeds it is less important to see far ahead and at higher speeds the extra illumination will be nice.
Here is a question for the non electrically challenged. This is a 6 volt system. Each light is 3 watts. Assuming the bike is traveling over 16 kph so that the entire 6 volts is present, switching on the secondary 3 watt light will draw 1/2 amp more in current than the primary light was drawing. Does this mean there will be more resistance in the hub? Will the bike hermit be working harder to light two lights than he was when only one was turned on? The bike hermit’s head is hurting.
The rear light is easier. The bike hermit uses a Spanninga battery powered light mounted to the fender. The AAA batteries for this light are easy to carry and they last for an extremely long time. They are deceptively bright and they don’t have the annoying strobelight, flashing feature, since flashing tail lights are not allowed in Germany. Smart people.