Saturday, April 5, 2014

NiteRider Lumina 650 (700): A Product Review

 I have originally been unsure of writing reviews on products that I personally use, due to the fact that I am the “First Lady” of Decorah Bicycles and obviously have easy access to some of these things.
Regardless of my luck on being able to test products or have items that aren’t typically sold in-store, I feel that honest opinion(s) on products/accessories are important and valuable for people.


My first product review will be on the NiteRider Lumina 650 (now sold as 700) rechargeable bike light.
When I first started commuting to work and back I had a very basic light that was really only serving legal purposes vs. viewing purposes. It was one of the items that Travis wanted upgraded for me asap, because riding at night can pose its own set of hazards.
If you are on a street that isn’t well-lit, you run the risk of hitting that pothole you would’ve missed in the daylight hours. Having a light that actually projects light out in front of you not only improves your safety, but it also makes you that much more noticeable to drivers. It’s really a bonus and it’s worth spending some money on a very good, durable, and rechargeable light.

With the NiteRider Lumina 650 I plug the USB charger port into my laptop (your laptop must be plugged in and charging).
You will be able to tell when your light needs recharging when it starts to fade in brightness and the button on top glows red. It will glow blue when it is fully charged or in a healthy-charged up state.

For basic town riding I often leave my light in its lowest setting, anything brighter than that isn’t needed for the city (at least for me). That’s pretty awesome when you consider the length of your commute (for myself it’s under 5 minutes, easily.)

Charge times are as follows:
High- 1 ½ hours
Med- 3 hours
Low- 5 ½ hours
Walk-18 hours
The light also has a flash mode if you’re into that sort of thing.
This light has been one of the handiest things I’ve ever had; you can easily use it as a flashlight if you were out on an evening walk in the woods (or trying to find something in your black bike bag, while standing outside in the darkness of night.)

I also feel much more noticeable to drivers, because I have something more than a tiny pair of blinky lights.
It is also very durable and has handled my clumsiness several times. Granted I do not recommend purposely dropping it on the pavement just to see if this proves to be the same for you, but it has handled my accidental drops several times without an issue minus these:
One time I dropped it and a little wire on the inside of the light came disconnected, it was easily fixed by removing the bottom of the light and re-connecting the wire.
There was another time when I accidentally dropped it and the plastic notches were damaged-they help the light stay hooked onto the mount. Travis contacted NiteRider and they sent a replacement bottom for me, hooray!

You might balk at the price of the NiteRider lights but if you are a commuter at night, enjoy night riding, or like to explore places in the dark on bike/foot-you should consider investing in this bike light. It’s strong, has a good stream of light, will make you noticeable in traffic, and provide light for you to see by.

I’ve recommended this light to my friends and it’s a light that I would recommend to anyone. Having gone from a small blinky light to this, I can attest how functional this light is. Plus, rechargeable is great and reduces battery waste. There is a mount for your bike and a mount for your helmet, so you have a couple options on how to use the light.


If you live around/near Decorah stop by Decorah Bicycles or go to your local bike shop and check them out! It’s a simple upgrade that will really improve your ride.

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