08 April, 2013

Shiny Bits

Whatever happened to nice fender mounted reflectors, or any nice reflectors for that matter? The reflector above was a present from a Japanese distributor. It is really lovely, a little jewel on the rear fender.
I like how it's radiused at the back.
And the profile is perfect. It just makes me smile. We need to come up with more little bits like this, even if they're not strictly practical.

28 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'd love to see a dynamo-powered rear light that looks like that. That would be classic, beautiful and practical

Anonymous said...

If you could come up with a nice 1/2 watt blinky light (like the Superflash) in a sexy, fender-mountable form factor, you could sell a LOT of units. I know so many people with gorgeous bikes with metal fenders and plastic blinky lights -- they'd go for something like this (as would I), but a reflector just doesn't cut it for daily, or even occasional city commuting.

Dyno said...

You absolutely need to come up with more bits like this! With a heavily loaded rear rack the back of bike can be tricky outfit with highly visible lighting. The fenders are an ideal perch - by why does no one make decent fender lights. PDW makes their fenderbot but it's sadly dim and not even very attractive. I haven't found much else available. I would be very interested in a VO fender-mounted light kit that was both very bright and attractive. With as many fender kits you guys have sold I think you have a market!

VeloOrange said...

I agree. Someone should make dynamo, or even battery, lights styled like this. But VO isn't planning to make lights. We don't have the expertise to make one I'd be satisfied with, sorry. A reflector, maybe?

randy said...

Many states require a rear reflector at night, even if a tail light is used, so a simple, inexpensive, and elegant fender-mount reflector would be a great item, assuming it had the correct DOT approvals.

Anonymous said...

All reflectors and tailights should be round. To my eye, other shapes just don't work on a bike. I completely agree with other commenters that someone needs to market a simple, round fender-mounted dynamo or battery powered light. The various German fender-mounted lights look too much like insects for my taste.

6-3-2 said...

I would buy this right now if it were on sale. I need something exactly like this. Sell it.

Anonymous said...

Spanninga Pixeo?

Anonymous said...

YES, please a beautiful elegant round reflector similar to the example.

Anonymous said...

Not practical? Seems the exact opposite to me. A reflector is nothing but practical.

VeloOrange said...

6-3-2, I only have one and it's not for sale ;<) These are hard to get and darn expensive. But we're looking into it.

Annon, We stopped selling the Pixeo because quality control was a big problem; so many returns. I'd like to see a classically-styled metal-bodied fender light.

Owen Lloyd said...

I am constantly on the lookout for modern dyno lights with the classic look. As far as I can tell fender mount ones are non existent. I have gone as far as retro fitting a classic incandescent housing with a LED. But it would be great to have a less labor intensive option.

Anonymous said...

Jitensha Studio in Berkeley sells these reflectors. I'm sure Velo Orange is acquainted with their product line.

Noah said...

If you make this I'll buy 3. Make a nice fender mounted battery light and dyamo light and I'll buy some of them as well. I'm amazed nobody sells anything like this.

Anonymous said...

VO should be making nice lights and reflectors, both front and rear. That, or offer led conversion kits for vintage lighting similar to what Compass Cycle and Reflectalight offers.

TJC said...

If that unit were available at less than, say, twenty bucks, and assuming that body to be hollow, I am somehow certain that some hackmeister out there would soon enough make it be a light.

Charlie said...

Are those leather washers between the eyebolts and the fender?

Alistair Williamson said...

Of the plastic reflectors, this cat-eye is the best I've seen. It hugs the fender; quite svelte even.

http://www.cateye.com/jp/products/detail/RR-C1/moreinfo/

Tom Reingold said...

I cast another vote in favor of a dynamo powered taillight in that shape. Or not in that shape. It can look different, for all I care. But the back of the fender happens to be an excellent place for a taillight. And most racks etc do not interfere with the path of the light from a light in that location!

Tom Reingold said...

I cast another vote in favor of a dynamo powered taillight in that shape. Or not in that shape. It can look different, for all I care. But the back of the fender happens to be an excellent place for a taillight. And most racks etc do not interfere with the path of the light from a light in that location!

Anonymous said...

You can find these japanese Kimura reflectors here: http://www.cyclesgrandbois.com/SHOP/718629/718635/list.html

Anonymous said...

My Pixeo has been nothing but rock-solid for thousands of miles. Even after getting hit from behind hard enough to knock my U-lock out of the rear rack slot, the light survived the impact with only a few mars and a scratch. It's now on its second bike and going strong. I think PW is the only place to get them these days.

Blogan said...

The first company to make a battery powered tail light with a similar appearance to this reflector will immediately have so many orders on their hands they won't be able to keep up with production. Add a dyno version and you could heat your house with paper money.

Jim said...

If VO do a reflector, maybe they could 'tactically' leave enough space inside so that someone might fit the internals of one of the B&M rear lights.

Not that they'd be making lights, just leaving the door ajar.

lawschoolissoover said...

The problem with making a battery light shaped like this is where you put a battery with sufficient capacity. Disk batteries will keep you going for maybe hours, but not many. So you either need to set the batteries somewhere else (which is not a terrible idea) or go with dyno power. For a dyno, the biggest item in the light is going to be the backup capacitor. The rest of the elements that make up a Pixeo (for example), on the other hand, are tiny and could easily be mounted behind a reflector like this one. Put the Pixeo's LED and prism in the center, leave the rest as a reflector, and you'd be golden.

BTW, what are the quality issues you've seen with the Pixeo? Like all fender-mount lights, it's a royal pain to install. But mine has been absolutely trouble-free since installation, in spite of some very nasty weather conditions.

Parisian said...

I agree, we need a reflector to supplement a lighting system.
There is a small JOS Reflector that is found on some of the nicest Herse bikes. that would be a great starting point. Not too big either.
The small reflectors look the best.
I happen to have the same reflector you've posted on my bike. Love it , but very expensive for what it is.

Captain Blight said...

Bluemels used a small reflector like this on their TdF and Airweight fenders. Pressed or spun alloy, of course, not billet-machined. Chris, this is a soluble problem. If you brought this to market, you'd have lines of people begging you for the chance to write you a check.

Also, many municipalities require the use of a reflector, not a rear light. It's usually overlooked, but the laws are still there.

Jeffrey Downes UK said...

I am the owner of Jeffreys Randonneur By Paulus Quiros

I would love to buy a rear light reflector That would fit on my Zepplin Fenders.

How about it?

Jeffrey Downes