Stronger headlight ?

tom foxe

New Member
The headlight on my Gazelle Ami is not very bright - 40 lumens. I'm quite capable of wiring a more powerful light, but does anyone know if the supply device - probably a DC-DC converter- can safely power a stronger light ? The Ami specs don't give enough info, and the electronics are probably buried inside the motor housing. I don't want to fit a more powerful headlight, only to find that shortly afterwards, I've burned out the converter because it wasn't designed to deliver enough power. Tried to google it without success. Can anyone help ?
 
There are suitable lights & DC converters available for this purpose but many who want a brighter headlight get a standalone light with an internal battery instead. Many such lights can be recharged from the bike's USB port and never need to be removed from the bike. They can get pricey though but the convenience of not having to fool with wiring or converters can make the $$ worthwhile.

I've tried several and found this one from Outbound Lighting to be the best so far:


The internal battery lasts long enough for all my night riding and I don't sacrifice range by depleting the bike battery. It can be mounted anywhere on the bike and is easily removed for use as a flashlight for doing nighttime repairs or loading & unloading the bike in the dark.

Welcome to the forum and good luck with your project!
 
Tom, I would suggest you use the existing light wire to power a relay - that uses a much more powerful source of power - with known capabilities. This avoids the situation you're already aware of.....
 
I use this Anderson distribution module between the battery & controller:

71hLkvYzhDL._AC_SL1500_.jpg

 
Headlights that come with most E-bikes are crap.
I got rid of the headlight the moment I received delivery of my new e-bike. Non bike specific, but lights that use 18650 or 21700 batteries are so much better, IMO. These flashlights or even headlamps can easily be adapted for bicycle use.
IMG_7768.jpeg

Here’s a 1,300 lumen Coast headlamp which uses a 18650 battery. At the 500 lumen setting it’ll burn for 8 hours. USB-C rechargeable also.
 
I find the 400 lumens of a catseye totally adequate on road. https://www.modernbike.com/cateye-ampp-400-headlight It straps to the handlebar, and will snap off to be hid in the pannier when I am parked shopping, eating, working or meeting. It flashes brighter once per three-quarter second to identify me as a bicycle. I keep it in a peanut butter jar, since a previous niterider was destroyed by immersion in rainwater in the bag. It charges through a microusb port, same charge port and voltage as my cell phone. A previous taillight was cut off with knife probably by a homeless person seeking food at a church I practice at, so I do not rely on straps anymore.
 
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the problem with flashlights the beam sucks for bike riding. shines everywhere into the eyes of drivers too. the best bike lights shine on the ground only.
Agreed, one drawback. Some flashlight manufacturers actually have bike lights in their product lineup. They look like ordinary flashlights with beam cut off and all that. Cheaper than bike specific headlights.
Most of my night riding are on trails so my setup works for me. Many others I see on the trails use DIY contraptions and most seem to work well.
 
Agreed, one drawback. Some flashlight manufacturers actually have bike lights in their product lineup. They look like ordinary flashlights with beam cut off and all that. Cheaper than bike specific headlights.
Most of my night riding are on trails so my setup works for me. Many others I see on the trails use DIY contraptions and most seem to work well.
I was glad to be able to dump battery powered lights with the e bike. no more daily charging. plus you dont have to turn them on and off.
 
There are suitable lights & DC converters available for this purpose but many who want a brighter headlight get a standalone light with an internal battery instead. Many such lights can be recharged from the bike's USB port and never need to be removed from the bike. They can get pricey though but the convenience of not having to fool with wiring or converters can make the $$ worthwhile.

I've tried several and found this one from Outbound Lighting to be the best so far:


The internal battery lasts long enough for all my night riding and I don't sacrifice range by depleting the bike battery. It can be mounted anywhere on the bike and is easily removed for use as a flashlight for doing nighttime repairs or loading & unloading the bike in the dark.

Welcome to the forum and good luck with your project!
I've also had good luck with this solution. The only downside is the lost handlebar real estate.

The brightness and beam pattern needed for your purposes will be hard to determine without testing. I like to ride laps at night in a poorly lit neighborhood without sidewalks. Lots of folks like to stroll here at night as well — and by "stroll", I mean meander all over the road as if cars and bikes don't exist. Worse yet, many dress like ninjas in all dark clothes.

My stock 120 lumen headlight couldn't show the ninjas in time to avoid collisions. So I added a (nominally) 2,000 lumen light. Big improvement, but 3,000 lumen would have been better in this setting.

Beam pattern and aiming are critical here, as I don't want to blind ninjas coming my way.
 
I use an handler bar extender to center mount a battery powered Niterider 3600lm Enduro light and have an option for a Niterider 2200lm helmet light. I only need to keep both lights on the lowest power level since there is enough street lighting and I have reflective gear on. I like the helmet light because driver's can see it better driving up a side street if my bike light is blocked by parked cars or landscaping. I can also turn my head towards the car on side street to alert them I have the right away.

The Niterider light does not come close to blinding on coming traffic compared to HID/LED headlights on modern cars (bike light pushed down to only illuminating about 10-15 feet ahead). I only use mid/max illumination if trail riding at night.

Handlebar extender:

Fox helmet with Enduro Pro 2200lm with 6 cell battery in backpack or jacket pocket and Light/Motion Vis 180 rear light
Bike Helmet.jpg


Himiway Cobra Pro with Niterider Pro Enduro 3600lm with 8-cell battery pack inside handlebar bag:
Himiway Handlebar.jpg
Himiway Handlebar rear.jpg
 
Headlights that come with most E-bikes are crap.
I got rid of the headlight the moment I received delivery of my new e-bike. Non bike specific, but lights that use 18650 or 21700 batteries are so much better, IMO. These flashlights or even headlamps can easily be adapted for bicycle use.

Here’s a 1,300 lumen Coast headlamp which uses a 18650 battery. At the 500 lumen setting it’ll burn for 8 hours. USB-C rechargeable also.
I'm reasonably sure the Coast lights do not have regulated output, meaning they get dimmer and dimmer throughout the 8 hour period you mention. Besides, I know of no 18650 cell that can supply 500 actual lumens for 8 hours. Not saying there's anything wrong with the Coast, though.
 
I've also had good luck with this solution. The only downside is the lost handlebar real estate.
There is no reason this type of light has to be bar mounted. Any front location would work, if you can make a suitable bracket.

Another plus for these self powered lights is, they can be removed and used as a flashlight. Could come in handy as a work light if you have a breakdown at night.
 
I too am looking to increase my headlight output. My Gazelle headlight has a rated output of 50 lumens. I already have a Cygolite Expilion 680 with self contained battery. This light has been flawless for several years but unfortunately, the mount will not work on my handlebar. I solved a similar problem in the past using a Minoura Space Grip but my old version also does not fit the new bars. I found a newer version of the Space Grip but the reviews on this new design are not that inspiring. I really like the smaller size of the Minoura as opposed to the Handlebar extender that MrGold35 linked above and repeated here.

https://www.amazon.com/Minoura-Accessory-Handlebar

Curious if anyone has found a product similar to the Minoura unit linked above or could speak to the quality of this product.
 

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I too am looking to increase my headlight output. My Gazelle headlight has a rated output of 50 lumens. I already have a Cygolite Expilion 680 with self contained battery. This light has been flawless for several years but unfortunately, the mount will not work on my handlebar. I solved a similar problem in the past using a Minoura Space Grip but my old version also does not fit the new bars. I found a newer version of the Space Grip but the reviews on this new design are not that inspiring. I really like the smaller size of the Minoura as opposed to the Handlebar extender that MrGold35 linked above and repeated here.
just replace the headlight. I have used lights& motion its 800 lumens not bad but this guy that trek uses really just the road well and keeps it out of the drivers eyes. though the flash does not work unless its hooked up to the twilight.
 
If I rode at night very much I'd probably opt for this one. Runs off my 48v battery, so no need to charge a separate battery. And apparently VERY bright. Very inexpensive also.

What I don't know is whether the controller on my ebike could handle the increased current, of if I would need to install a separate on/off switch

 
I too am looking to increase my headlight output. My Gazelle headlight has a rated output of 50 lumens. I already have a Cygolite Expilion 680 with self contained battery. This light has been flawless for several years but unfortunately, the mount will not work on my handlebar. I solved a similar problem in the past using a Minoura Space Grip but my old version also does not fit the new bars. I found a newer version of the Space Grip but the reviews on this new design are not that inspiring. I really like the smaller size of the Minoura as opposed to the Handlebar extender that MrGold35 linked above and repeated here.

https://www.amazon.com/Minoura-Accessory-Handlebar

Curious if anyone has found a product similar to the Minoura unit linked above or could speak to the quality of this product.
I never had much luck with bar extenders. I've tried a few, but none were sturdy enough for my needs. There may well be quality products out there, but I have yet to find one. I eventually decided to spend the $$, and changed out my handlebar with a Jones H bar:
SG25ALblkprofile2angled__01378.1564174438.jpg


I chose one with a 2.5" rise for a more upright riding position, but there are many styles available. All are rock solid and hold my heavy accessories with no movement, even on rough trails.
 
As above, I have both versions of the Jones Bars, standard and the riser. Yes, they are great bars with a nice extension to clamp whatever accessories you have. But keep in mind that these bars will shorten your reach somewhat with the 45 degree grip angle. So you might be looking at swapping out your stem as well.
 
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