Empowering The Bicycle Traveler

Tail Lights

Not all jurisdictions will require tail lights on a bicycle after dark but a desire for self preservation should overrule and dictate that the bicycle traveler have decent lights on the bike to make them visible to motorists approaching from the rear.

We like the Spanninga fender mounted lights and the XLR Road Handlebar Plug Lights. For those who don’t have fenders (hard to imagine) or who don’t want to mount lights there, here’s a link to some proven tail lights.

side view, mounted

This Spanninga light attaches directly to the rear fender.

reflector on Spanninga taillight

The Spanninga light has a large reflector surface and….

is visible over 180 degrees horizontal, and is very bright directly on axis, due to focusing prisms in front of the super bright LED

The bar end plug light is a pretty clever idea that seems to work well.
I first saw these on a bike we were following on a rainy night in a suburb of Seattle and I was impressed with the extra visibilty they provided. They are friction fit inside the handlebar and run on two camera type batteries, which are included.

3 comments… add one
  • Aushiker November 6, 2011, 4:12 am

    I am bit of a fan of the Radbot 1000. Very bright light (I have had a couple of motorists comment on the brightness and how I was easy too see) but on the down side, battery powered.

    • Bike Hermit November 6, 2011, 7:38 am

      The Radbot is a Portland Design Works brand and I have not had the chance to use it. They make a Fenderbot as well. Both use a really bright one watt led light instead of a prism to focus the light as the Spanninga does. Thanks for the information, I will have to try one out. It’s interesting that the states of Idaho and Washington (and, I’m sure, others) make rear lights optional but both require rear reflectors on bikes, because rear reflectors are passive and solid state, so they will never fail. Personally, I feel much more comfortable with a light as well as a reflector.

  • Joel Niemi February 16, 2015, 12:14 am

    Have you seen the Spanninga Nr. 9 taillight? Such would look great on fenders.


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