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Lupine Rotlicht Tail-Light
The Lupine Rotlicht (“red light”) is a diminutive go-anywhere tail-light with some nifty features. Made in Germany as with its headlight and headlamp siblings, it is a first class unit whose flexible strap allows it to be easily mounted to a bike frame or seat tube. The battery is integrated LiIon.
Lupine describes the Rotlicht this way:
- In addition to the incredible brightness, the ROTLICHT has some incredible features - like a brake light and brightness sensor. With this light you won't be overlooked anymore on the streets.
- Brake Light. When you brake, the built in acceleration sensor turns the light brighter to gain more attention on the streets.
- Brightness Sensor. Automatic ambient light adjustment. If for example a car comes closer, the light turns brighter.
- Easy and Quick Mounting. Due to the EPDM strap, the ROTLICHT can be mounted on seat-tubes from 22 - 55mm diameter. Other mounts will come soon.
The ROTLICHT comes with 4 different Light modes. All light modes can be adjusted in intensity from 0.1W (10 Lumens) to 2W (160 Lumens).
1. Steady Light
2. Flash Light
3. Wave Pulse Light
4. Pulse Light
One of the best features is the mounting strap which allows instant mounting to any diameter seat post, no small thing when having bikes with different seatpost diameters! It also means that for events not needing a tail-light, it is also instant removal, a plus over the longer lasting but heavier DiNotte 300R or 400R, both of which require that a mount be screwed onto the seatpost.
Discussion follows below.
Runtimes are states as below and in testing on a desk (no movement) these numbers appear to be accurate.
Watts Runtime Steady Blink Pulse Steady+Impulse 0.1W 30h 60h -- 25h 0.25W 12h 24h 24h 10h 0.5W 6h 12h 12h 5h 1.0W 3h 6h 6h 2:30h 2.0W 1:30h 3h 3h --
At night (the intended use for most), the braking feature and brightness sensor make a lot of sense, and should be utilized for most riders.
Daylight riding: I run a headlight and tail-light even during daytime. The Rotlicht is plenty bright to be useful in the daytime! But out on the road, the brake light and/or light-detection feature in particular can cause the light to spend a lot of time in super-bright mode—and lots of hilly riding means frequent braking. In practice this meant up to half the battery life quoted below (e.g. a long descent with frequent braking for corners). To prevent this from happening, disable the feature that brightens the light up with braking to deliver runtime of the rated length as well as the brightness detection feature.