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Fenix L2D Premium 100 Flashlights as Bicycle Headlights
(Also Known as Fenix Digital L2D RB100 Premium or Fenix L2D Rebel 100)

Mostly as Used on a 2003 Raleigh F500 Mountain Bike (Police-Style Patrol Bike)
and Gary Fisher Caliber 29

E-mail Al: al@ruscelli.com

Photos Al Ruscelli Photography

"My bicycle lights had given the poor guy in the car Richard Dreyfuss/Close Encounters Syndrome. He was left shaken and irradiated by the side of the road, babbling incoherently to the authorities about what he had just seen."

Unknown Cyclist and Flashaholic


Four Fenix L2D Premium 100 flashlights mounted on a Raleigh F500 mountain bike. 

Two of these L2Ds are generally sufficient for most night riding needs of the average recreational night rider, so whoever put this together is probably just showing off (a real poser).  Be that as it may, everyone has different night cycling lighting needs, whether perceived or real. The Fenix L2D LED flashlights put out enough light that one would be sufficient for riding at anything but a fast speed (at least to get you where you need to go and back in relative safety and with decent visibility.  Two, however, are much better.  But, for one rider, that which is overkill to meet their needs might be barely adequate to meet the needs of another rider.  It's all relative to the individual, the kind of night riding they do, how fast they ride, how long they are ought at night, the area in which they ride, etc. 

Most of the content on the following web page was inspired by information from them members of BikeForums.net, CandlePowerForums.com, and the Mtbr.com Forums.

What you see below is what I'm hoping will help me to improve my ability to see when riding my bike at night.  In most examples shown below are two Fenix L2D Premium 100 lights from Fenix-Store.com (now 4sevens.com).  The lights are mounted to a ViewPoint OS Spacebar from Performance Bike (similar versions of which can also be found labeled under a couple of different names).  Lights are mounted to the Spacebar using TwoFish Lockblocks (also from 4sevens.com). 

In the photos immediately below, the lights have been somewhat hastily attached to the bike.  As of the time of taking these photos, I had not even used the light setup yet but was getting them into a rough working position.  I'll likely tweak the setup a bit after use.  The lights should probably be slid a bit farther back, but there was a nice ridge toward the back of the lights to snug the TwoFish Lockblocks up against, so that's what I did initially. 

After I see how this setup works, I'll be adding some kind of helmet light (don't have one yet).  On the back of the bike, I am using a Planet Bike Super Flash (not yet shown). 

 

Fenix L2D Premium 100 Flashlight Out of the Box

The L2D comes nicely boxed with instructions, warranty card, holster, lanyard, spare o-rings, and spare rubber switch boot.

   

Instructions and Warranty Card
(Large Enough to Read)

Instructions / User Manual  Warranty Card

 

Bicycle Handlebar Mounting Options for the Fenix L2D
(Using a ViewPoint Spacebar and TwoFish Lockblocks)

Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Viewpoint OS Space Bar

Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar

Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar

Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar

Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar

Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar

Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Mounted with TwoFish Lockblocks to Viewpoint OS Space Bar

 

 

A Slight Repositioning of the Lights on the Spacebar

Lights centered better in the Lockblocks and spaced farther out from one another on the spacebar.
This position offers better balance for the flashlights in the Lockblocks.

L2D Lights Moved to Ends of Spacebar  L2D Lights Moved to Ends of Spacebar  L2D Lights Moved to Ends of Spacebar

 

 

Yet Another Configuration Using Two ViewPoint Spacebars

I set up two Spacebars to see how much extra real estate I could gain for my already crowded handlebars.  The two Spacebars allow me to easily mount two lights and a bike computer with an extra bit of space in case I need to mount anything else later. 

   

   

Setup with Dual ViewPoint Spacebars  Setup with Dual ViewPoint Spacebars  Setup with Dual ViewPoint Spacebars

Setup with Dual ViewPoint Spacebars  Setup with Dual ViewPoint Spacebars  Setup with Dual ViewPoint Spacebars

 

 

Some Shots of the L2D Premium 100 Lights During the Day

Shots done at 25, 50, 75, and 100 feet, respectively (shot with lens set to 50mm). 

Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights at 25 Feet  Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights at 50 Feet  Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights at 75 Feet  Dual Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights at 100 Feet

 

 

A Closer Look at the ViewPoint OS Spacebar

It need not be taken apart to this degree to mount it!  Just showing its mysterious inner workings here. 

Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Viewpoint OS Space Bar

Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Viewpoint OS Space Bar

Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Viewpoint OS Space Bar  Viewpoint OS Space Bar

 

Photos of Spacebar End Caps

Removing the spacebar end caps, reinserting them at a slight angle, then securing them with electrical tape would be a way to allow the L2D lights to be mounted at a slight outward angle to broaden the light pattern left to right (if desired). 

Note:  Personally, after experimenting around with beam direction, I think it's best to have both lights either aimed to the same spot or one light aimed slightly ahead of the other.  I think pointing the lights to the side, while broadening the overall beam, causes a loss of light intensity in the middle zone.  These lights, while very powerful for their size, are probably more effective when working together without trying to spread the beam too much. The better alternative is to let the two handlebar lights work together and use a third helmet light to supplement any needs for further light to left or right. 

ViewPoint Spacebar with plugs removed  ViewPoint Spacebar with plugs removed

ViewPoint Spacebar with plugs reinserted at angle  ViewPoint Spacebar with plugs reinserted at angle

 

 

Fenix L2D Premium 100 Flashlight and TwoFish Lockblock

OK, the Compact Flash card has nothing to do with the light or the Lockblock, but it does give a frame of reference for size.  Lockblocks and lights available from Fenix-Store.com

Fenix L2D Premium 100 Light and TwoFish Lockblock  TwoFish Lockblock

TwoFish Lockblock  TwoFish Lockblock  TwoFish Lockblock

Fenix L2D Premium 100  Fenix L2D Premium 100 and TwoFish Lockblock  Fenix L2D Premium 100

Fenix L2D Premium 100  Fenix L2D Premium 100  Fenix L2D Premium 100

 

 

TwoFish Lockblocks and TwoFish Bikeblocks Compared

The TwoFish Lockblock has two straps that are perpendicular to each other with perpendicular U-joints and the TwoFish Bikeblock has one long strap wraps around two parallel U-joints.  (I call them U-joints for lack of a better descriptive term).  The Lockblock has a small U-joint and a larger U-joint and the Bikeblock has two large U-joints.  The Lockblocks are best used to attach a light that runs perpendicular to the object to which it attaches (for instance, handlebars or the Spacebars I use).  The Bikeblocks are best used to attach a light that runs parallel to the object to which it attaches (for instance, a helmet joint as seen in the photos farther down this page).  The Lockblocks and Bikeblocks can also be used to attach other items to bikes like bike pumps or U-locks, etc.

Admittedly, there are more photos here than anyone really needs to see.  But there ought to be enough angles to get a pretty good look.  And I am figuring out, though, that with the larger U-joints on the Bikeblocks, it's harder to get a light as slim at the L2D locked in snugly.  The Lockblock as a wider and a narrower U-joint, but the Bikeblock has two wide U-joints.  The width of the U on the Bikeblock is slightly too large to be a snug fit for the L2D (takes more effort to cinch it into place than is needed with the Lockblocks). 

L2D, Bikeblock and straps (top) and Lockblock and straps (bottom)

Fenix L2D and Lockblock (left) and Bikeblock (right)  Fenix L2D and Lockblock (left) and Bikeblock (right)  Fenix L2D and Lockblock (left) and Bikeblock (right)

Bikeblock (left) and Lockblock (right)  Bikeblock (left) and Lockblock (right)  Bikeblock (left) and Lockblock (right)

 Lockblock (left) and Bikeblock (right)  Bikeblock (left) and Lockblock (right)  Bikeblock (left) and Lockblock (right)

Bikeblock (left) and Lockblock (right)  Bikeblock (left) and Lockblock (right)  Bikeblock (left) and Lockblock (right)

Bikeblock (left) and Lockblock (right)  Bikeblock (left) and Lockblock (right)  Bikeblock (left) and Lockblock (right)

Bikeblock (left) and Lockblock (right)  Bikeblock (left) and Lockblock (right)  Bikeblock (left) and Lockblock (right)

 

 

A Minimalist Configuration on Another Bike (Two Lights, Two Lockblocks)

 

 

 

   

 

 

An Over/Under Configuration of Two Lockblocks
Idea Courtesy of Cave Dave of the CandlePower Forums.
The strap from one Lockblock is removed and the strap from the other Lockblock holds both in place on the handlbar.
This configuration could be a real space saver for those with limited handlebar space.

  

  

  

  

  

 

 

A Quad L2D Setup on the Raleigh F500

This setup relies on two Viewpoint spacebars attached to the handlebar of the bike.  The four L2Ds are attached to the spacebars via TwoFish lockblocks. 

  

  

  

  

   

   

   

 

Two ViewPoint SpaceBars Set Up to Accommodate Four Lights

  

 

 

A Quad L2D Setup on the Gary Fisher Caliber 29

This setup uses only TwoFish lockblocks to attach the L2Ds to the handlebar.

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

 

My Daughter Mia's 16-inch Raleigh Retro L2D Setup

Yeah, she wishes this was hers...!

  

  

 

 

Attaching a Helmet Light

Not yet having a proper helmet light, I did some experimenting by mounting one of the Fenix L2D lights to my Bell Variant helmet using one of the TwoFish Lockblocks.  The Lockblocks do not fit my helmet well and need to be replaced with something like the TwoFish Bikeblocks with parallel straps for a better fit on the helmet (as opposed to the perpendicular straps of the Lockblocks). 

I rode with one L2D on the spacebar (as attached to the bike handlebars) and one L2D on the helmet.  Although there was some light drop-off from not having both L2D lights directed consistently on the road in front of me, the second light on the helmet made up for it in many ways (often being directed straight in front of me anyway, or when not directed in front of me, pointed toward where I needed to see when making turns, etc.).  In many ways, I found the ride with the lights in this configuration better than the dual handlebar light setup.  However, what I think would be nearly ideal for me would be the dual L2D handlebar setup along with a matching L2D on my helmet.  Smaller, more compact options are available for the helmet, but I like the idea of having three lights with consistent power source (with the rechargeable AA batteries) and the fact that all three lights would be interchangeable.  Thus, I'm seriously considering a triple L2D setup. 

 

Bell Variant Helmet and Lockblock Mounted Fenix L2D  Bell Variant Helmet and Lockblock Mounted Fenix L2D

 

And the Helmet After Attaching a TwoFish Bikeblock to Replace the Lockblock
(And after acquiring a third L2D light specifically for the helmet)

 

 

 

This Is a Random and Mostly Meaningless Shot, Not a Working Configuration
(Just playing with the lights while doing the Lockblock and Bikeblock shots)

 

 

A Rather Outrageous Three-Light Helmet Setup
(Three Fenix L2D Premium 100 Lights Attached to Helmet with TwoFish Bikeblocks)

Inspired by 4sevens of the CandlePowerForums and Fenix-Store.com (and his frightening five-light helmet)

   

   

   

   

 

Testing, testing...Oops.  (Back to the drawing board.)

 

 

Cateye TL-LD1000 and Planet Bike Super Flash
(A Possible Dual Tail Light Setup)

I might end up using these two tail lights in a dual configuration.  If I were to pick just one, it would be the Planet Bike Super Flash (lower light).  It's lighter, simpler in operation, and less expensive than the Cateye TL-LD1000 (upper light).

Cateye TL-LD1000 and Planet Bike Super Flash  Cateye TL-LD1000 and Planet Bike Super Flash  Cateye TL-LD1000 and Planet Bike Super Flash

   

 

 

 

AA Battery Cases from Thomas Distributing

For Four or Eight Batteries.  Very light weight and not much larger footprint than the batteries themselves.  These run about $1.50 to $2 each.  For those concerned with weight, the small case is about 10 grams empty and 128 grams with a set of four batteries, the large case about 18 grams empty and 252 grams with a set of eight batteries.  I use these cases to carry extra batteries for my camera gear and can just as easily throw four or eight extras in a bike bag. 

Thomas Distributing Battery Holders (Cases)  Thomas Distributing Battery Holders (Cases)

 

 

One L2D Premium 100 Versus Two L2D Premium 100 Flashlights

For these photos, I used a Canon 1D Mark II digital SLR and a 16-35mm f2.8L Canon EF lens.  The lens was used at its widest at 16mm with an aperture of f3.5 and a shutter speed of one-half second.  I tried to be as objective as I could in taking these photos and processing them through my PC and making them reflect as accurately as I could what I actually saw when using the lights (I actually went back and forth several times from my PC to the outside light setup to verify what I was seeing on the PC monitor and compare it to the outdoor lights).  Unfortunately, as I see it there is realistically no way to show in a photo what the human eye is able to pick up in terms of seeing the scene.  While these photos will show a decent relative difference between having one light versus two, the overall lighting of the scene, as viewed via a digital photo, does not in any way match what the human my eye in viewing the scene was able to pick up, especially on the periphery of the lights.  The human eye adjusts.  The camera shows only an average, thus (in my mind) the camera-generated image cannot show with much accuracy what the human eye is realistically able to see.  (Just my opinion, so make of it what you will.) 

I can say this:  the difference that I perceive when using one light versus two is huge.  The difference in viewing these digital photos when seeing the one-light versus two-light image is perceptible, but not as dramatic as what I saw with my own eyes.  And when riding and adding motion/speed to the mix, the difference between using one light versus two is even further magnified. 

If I were to see only these photos and have to make a judgment on the effectiveness of the lights, I would likely misjudge them.  However, when I'm outside actually using the lights, they enable me to see much better than what I feel is represented in these photos. 

 

30 Feet from House
Left Photo One Light, Right Photo Two Lights

 

 

30 Feet from Cars and 50 Feet from Garage
Left Photo One Light, Right Photo Two Lights

 

 

Tests Redone Using Different Setup
(Lights Off Bike and On Tripod for Convenience)

For these tests, I attached compact monopod to the front legs of my camera tripod at the height the lights would be when mounted on the bike handlebars.  The monopod was just about the same diameter of the ViewPoint Spacebar so it was an easy fit for the TwoFish Lockblocks.  The monopod was attached to the tripod using a couple of standard Velcro strips. 

   

 

 

A Few Outdoor Test Beam Shots Using Tripod Setup and Fenix L2D Lights

(Note:  I sincerely believe that there is no way to accurately assess how your eye will view the light from any given light source when judged by photos only.  The human eye adjusts, photos are static and can in no manner accurately emulate human vision, especially along the fringes of the light.)

Far Corner of House 50 feet, Far Fence 80 Feet
16-35mm Lens at 16mm, F2.8 at 1/2 second
Left Photo One Light, Right Photo Two Lights

 

 

Far Corner of House 50 feet, Far Fence 80 Feet
16-35mm Lens at 35mm, F2.8 at 1/2 second
Left Photo One Light, Right Photo Two Lights

 

 

Approx. 40 Feet from House
16-35mm Lens at 16mm, F2.8 at 1/2 second
Left Photo One Light, Right Photo Two Lights

 

 

 

Watch Out for The Fenix Girl!

 

 

 

Wish List Items

(These photos NOT by Al Ruscelli Photography)

These Nitto lamp holders seem to be much sturdier and more well made than the ViewPoint Spacebar being used on the lights in the above photos.  But the Nitto holders are also quite a bit more expensive (neighborhood of $50 US for the big one). 

Nitto Lamp Holder 1  Nitto Lamp Holder 1

Nitto Lamp Holder 2  Nitto Lamp Holder 2

 

 

Links

Where to Get More Cycling and Lighting Info

BikeForums.net

CandlePowerForums.com

4sevens.com

Mtbr.com Forums

 

 

Questions About Anything on This Web Page?

E-mail Al: al@ruscelli.com

 

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