Night Riding (...that sounds ominous!).

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by Komet, Sep 28, 2003.

  1. Komet

    Komet The Voice of Reason

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2002
    Oddometer:
    38,096
    Location:
    Memphis, Tennessee
    Just wonder what some of you guys think about riding at night. Last night, as I was coming home from a little late afternoon jaunt...it kind of dawned on me...I getting where I really don't care for riding that much at night. It's not so much the anemic stock lights that are prevalant with a lot of bikes. It's rather the opposing headlights...seem like they rob me a lot of focusing moreso nowadays (I hope I'm putting it into words correctly)....when I was a youngster, I favored night trips over day...but I think father time is catching up with me. Any opinions?:ear
    #1
  2. Mully

    Mully Kineticist

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2001
    Oddometer:
    3,757
    Location:
    The Comstock
    An anti-reflection coating on your bifocals helps, dude. :D

    And some major photon emitters........ :evil

    mully
    #2
  3. Komet

    Komet The Voice of Reason

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2002
    Oddometer:
    38,096
    Location:
    Memphis, Tennessee
    May have to look into that...because this old man does wear the bifocals!:evil
    #3
  4. dragoon

    dragoon I'm the REAL Dingo Joe

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2003
    Oddometer:
    23,289
    Location:
    Frazeysburg, OH
    I still like the night rides. I pick my moments, full moon, no moon, etc. I like to travel at night during trips. I don't like the dusk time of day, deer races:arg

    How about the BMWRA rally?
    #4
  5. turkish

    turkish Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2002
    Oddometer:
    7,140
    Location:
    Gone fishin
    Hey Pops!

    Night riding is fun!

    [​IMG]
    #5
  6. Komet

    Komet The Voice of Reason

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2002
    Oddometer:
    38,096
    Location:
    Memphis, Tennessee
    I would like that kind...just don't care for the opposing beams!:evil
    #6
  7. MikeO

    MikeO Part-time wage slave...

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2002
    Oddometer:
    7,460
    Location:
    Scarning, today...
    I know this sounds obvious, but - don't look at oncoming headlamps. Although the eyes' natural reaction is to look at bright lights in a dark environment, doing so (fairly obviously) loses you any night vision you've developed.

    Practice looking as far down the nearside (right side to you, left to me :D) kerb as you can, when you detect a vehicle approaching. Looking any further towards the oncoming lights will not gain you any view, as well as risking dazzling yourself.

    Mike
    #7
  8. Tictock

    Tictock Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    central ohio
    i ride every night to work and agreed with you, major PIA. if the cagers and their lights aren't bad enough what about all the reflectorized crap out there; line markers, guard rail markers, signs every 30 feet, and my favorite is driveways; must be a contest to see how many markers the next guy can put up! not long ago i even saw one idiot had used two smv triangles at his drive. isn't there laws for these type?
    when you're riding out there just once in a while that's o.k., but hell i know the deer by first name over here.
    and yes your eyes change as you get older.
    something for you fledglings to look forward to.:mad?
    #8
  9. dragoon

    dragoon I'm the REAL Dingo Joe

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2003
    Oddometer:
    23,289
    Location:
    Frazeysburg, OH
    Central OH! Welcome.:drums
    #9
  10. Tictock

    Tictock Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    central ohio
    thanks for the welcome.
    been here a while.
    don't post much, but try to keep up.
    #10
  11. Kaumajet

    Kaumajet H.I.D. Positive

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2003
    Oddometer:
    10,137
    Location:
    Ottawa
    Tictock raises a good point. I have plenty of illumination on the front of my GS in the form of 520s, 1200s and hot-rodded bulbs, but on my latest trip I had a very bad experience at night.

    I was pushing the edges of dark, fatigue, and weather to get to Kenora, Ontario for the night (should have stopped in Winnipeg). I had failed to realize that it was Sunday night, and all the cagers are coming back from the cottage. So, into a steady stream of headlights I went in the pouring rain, with nearly 500 watts of useless lighting on the front of my scooter. Whenever I did get a break in the traffic, the fucking reflectorized everything killed any chance I had of seeing a deer or moose anyway.

    End rant.
    #11
  12. jclark

    jclark Lost again??

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2002
    Oddometer:
    78
    Location:
    Auburn, AL
    I try to avoid riding at night on longer trips or in traffic but I have found a type of night riding I really enjoy.

    If I am in the need for some relaxation or just in the mood for some "wind" I will hop on the bike after dark and try to get myself lost on local dirt roads. I almost never see another car and I am usually going slow enough that I hope I can avoid most animals running into my path or at least cause minimal damage if I do hit something.:uhoh The trip usually ends up taking an hour or two and covers around 50 miles or so.

    Since I do this alone, with no cell phone, and totally spontaneously I am sure it will bite me one night but so be it.

    Jim
    #12
  13. HarveyMushman

    HarveyMushman Tire Squarerer

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2002
    Oddometer:
    16,986
    Location:
    Virginia, USA
    Rode home in the dark and rain last night. Like you, komet, I found the oncoming headlights to be the biggest problem. I know to focus on my lane and not stare at the lights, but between the rain, bug guts, and scratches on my shield, the glare was considerable. Out on my own on a unlit, sparsely signed rural highway, I could see reasonably well, but not so well that I was completely comfortable.
    #13
  14. Chopperman

    Chopperman I am dead

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2001
    Oddometer:
    27,033
    I love night riding. Dangerous, but very meditative.
    #14
  15. kevbo

    kevbo Rubbery-Lip Flappin' PHI

    Joined:
    May 29, 2002
    Oddometer:
    1,478
    Location:
    Albuturkey
    Maybe Mully was just pulling your chain, but if you are one
    (like me) who's vision requires corrective lenses, there ARE a lot of things that can be done to improve night vision.

    I find my night vision with contacts is MUCH better than with eyeglasses. Perhaps because they stay cleaner, and unscratched. Also, I can wear cheap sunglasses during the day, which helps preserve my night vision. The only problem they cause with riding is I have to manage airflow inside the visor so my eyes don't dry out too much. Every year, contacts improve and get easier to wear. If you tried them a long time ago, and they didn't work out, it may be worth another look.

    AR coatings can buy you about 10% more light transmission on high-index plastic lenses. The caveat is that they need to be spotless to work. A fingerprint negates the AR function. There is less reflection off lower index materials, so AR coatings don't do as much good there.

    Many of the high index-of-refraction plastics will result in nasty aberations that are especially noticeable at night....and worse with strong perscriptions (where they tend to be promoted due to the weight advantage) Blinding lights are bad enough without
    large rainbows around them.

    Edge polishing can cause trouble at night too (prisms at the edges) so forget fashion and stick with matt ground edges.

    As far as bifocals go, if you are getting rainbows off the edge of the lower lens, gradient lenses might help. If you just barely need bifocals, you may find contacts allow enough accomidation range that you don't really need the bifocals.
    #15
  16. Tictock

    Tictock Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    central ohio
    kevo, not to criticize your good info. on contact lenses but will that help the lazy DOT crew that won't remove the shipping label from the back of signs? a label made out of scrap reflective material from the sign co..

    ever wonder what that little rectangle glaring back at you is?
    #16
  17. motu

    motu Loose Pre Unit

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2001
    Oddometer:
    4,915
    Location:
    New Zealand
    I too rode home the other night in the rain - even with hopeless lights and...well hopeless everything I had no problems - even when I turned the ign off by mistake and it all went black and quiet.But on that urban fringe with no street lights but more cars it was getting dangerous.These city fringe dwellers in their SUVs just love to have everything on...and to dip your lights for only a motorcycle is a waste of wattage.
    #17
  18. Kaumajet

    Kaumajet H.I.D. Positive

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2003
    Oddometer:
    10,137
    Location:
    Ottawa
    I find this gets their attention...:evil :nod

    Attached Files:

    #18
  19. motu

    motu Loose Pre Unit

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2001
    Oddometer:
    4,915
    Location:
    New Zealand
    This is all I had to hit em with.

    Attached Files:

    #19
  20. Kaumajet

    Kaumajet H.I.D. Positive

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2003
    Oddometer:
    10,137
    Location:
    Ottawa
    :thumb
    #20