|Schmidt Edelux II||Anton Tutter||10/2/13 7:42 AM|
Given the mention of the upcoming Edelux II in the latest BQ, I am curious whether Schmidt will be selling these in both standard and "inverted" mount configurations? And if so, will they finally correct the inverted light's design flaw of not having a switched taillight output? It is utterly ironic to me that Schmidt designed in one of the most elegant and reliable headlight switching mechanisms into their headlight but made it unable to control a taillight. This leaves the builder with the requirement to either install either a clunky and possibly failure-prone external taillight switch (incongruous with the concept of an "integrated" lighting system) or just forgo a dynamo taillight for a battery operated one. Based on the number of corrective operations I have performed on this light for people who have chosen it for their new custom bikes, I would say it's not a trivial omission on Schmidt's part.
|Re: Schmidt Edelux II||Jansenh||10/2/13 8:20 AM|
From the article -
"I like to hang my headlight from my front rack, which makes it less susceptible to coming loose due to vibrations and provides the best beam pattern for spirited riding. Unfortunately, there are no plans for a “hanging-mount” or “upside-down” Edelux II at this time (above the original version). However, we’ll keep pushing Schmidt Maschinenbau, and hopefully they will reconsider."
|Re: Schmidt Edelux II||Anton Tutter||10/2/13 9:18 AM|
Well if Compass continues to push for an inverted version maybe they can also push for making it fully functional as well?
|Re: Schmidt Edelux II||Jan Heine||10/2/13 9:25 AM|
The taillight connector is part of the hanger that attaches the light. For the "standing" version, that is fine, since the hanger is on the bottom, and any water that collects there will just run out. When you turn the light upside down, then you get problems, so Schmidt just eliminated the taillight connector.
Putting a separate taillight connector on the bottom would require different tooling and a significant investment.
The problem with the hanging attachment lights is that the demand is small, and so these lights aren't a big priority for Schmidt. Most of their lights go on expensive, sturdy and heavy German city and touring bikes that are far from the machines we love.
A better solution is an external switch, for example, in the steerer tube, that allows turning both lights on and off without reaching close to the spokes.
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|Re: Schmidt Edelux II||WMdeR||10/2/13 10:09 AM|
The inverted Edelux was originally intended to be used with an integrated installation and a remote on/off switch for the system (similar to this solution: http://www.renehersestore.com/servlet/the-869/Stem-Cap-Mounted-Light/Detail ,
Both the headlight and taillight are wired in parallel into the harness and switched by the remote.
The ones I've got don't even have a switch on the light body. I believe the version Compass Bicycle sells have a switch.
Another example here:
See the switch? I know these switches must look clunky and failure-prone, but I honestly don't notice it at all until I need my lights, at which time a quick twist of the switch cap (it is the extension above the stem) turns the lights on. That one has been foolproof (and I'm an improved fool) since July 2009 and about 35,000mi. Same with the threadless switch and housing on my Allroad (turned in my shed and installed in 2008), which was one of the inspirations for the switch and housing Mike sells for threadless applications. My home-made versions incorporated a headset compression plug, which was deleted from the production version in favor of a compression collar).
I've seen one of these switches that did have trouble after PBP (a friend's switch worked itself loose and rotated freely in the housing) but it got fixed quickly with a thinwall socket and a spare jam nut. I include a drop of blue loctite on the jam nut threads after observing this issue.
William M. deRosset
Fort Collins, CO
|Re: Schmidt Edelux II||Anton Tutter||10/2/13 12:29 PM|
I am very aware of why the Schmidt designers eliminated the taillight functionality from the inverted Edelux. Since the taillight wire was a separate wire from the coaxial wire supplying dynamo power to the headlight, and whose routing was placed directly through the aluminum mount, it posed a problem for water collection. I get that. The issue I have is why did Schmidt decide that they had to eliminate taillight functionality just because they had to eliminate the taillight wiring? It seems to me that Schmidt did not want to move away from a 2-conductor co-axial wire input when designing the hanging/inverted version. If they had simply swapped out the 2-conductor co-axial wire for 3-conductor cabling, they wouldn't need a separate taillight output!
Since Schmidt didn't do this, I did. I have converted four "hanging" Edeluxes back into fully functional units that can control a taillight with the built-in switch. I did this by removing the original 2-conductor cabling and replacing it with the same outer diameter cable that carries three conductors. The third conductor is the taillight output, and is soldered to the taillight output section of the circuit, which is just left dormant in the hanging version. The new cable is sealed in the same way that the original is-- it is simply glued in place with a sealant-adhesive. The whole process involves a bit of microsurgery, and of course the warranty is instantly voided, but for customers of high-end custom bikes who didn't want to compromise on functionality and aesthetics, this was the most logical solution. This is what the converted handing Edelux looks like:
In other words, it looks identical to an unmodified hanging Edelux. The 3-conductor round cable is a perfect visual replacement for the 2-conductor cable that all Edeluxes come with, and facilitates restoration of the taillight functionality. The two most recent Weigle customs have my modified inverted Edeluxes and two other recent custom bikes are sporting them. Obviously there is a demand for this!!!
As to Will's point. I think a stem cap switch is an elegant (not clunky!), perfect solution to the Edelux's lack of taillight control. I am aware of this switch but I'm guessing it is even more of a niche product than the hanging Edelux. How many bikes have 1" threadless steerers? If you have a more common 1-1/8" threadless steerer, or you have a threaded steerer, this switch simply won't work, and the only other option is a clunky external switch (or a battery taillight), as I mentioned before.
In short, the hanging Edelux has a bombproof and elegant switch, but can't control a taillight. Simply put, this is a design deficit, and I don't see why Schmidt wasn't able to overcome this design deficit when I could.
PS-- To Will-- if your stem switch design served as the prototype for the Boulder switch, then kudos to you! I really like that switch, it reminds me of the old constructeur stem caps, and I only lament that it's limited to such a narrow subset of stem types.
|Re: Schmidt Edelux II||Jan Heine||10/2/13 1:55 PM|
That is a really smart solution. I'll suggest it to Schmidt when the issue of the hanging Edelux II comes up. Of course, they'd need to make sure that the wires are clearly marked - the last thing I want is a lot of returns because the light isn't working, when the customer simply connected the wrong wires. But there must be a solution to that.
However, on a high-end custom bike, I wouldn't want to go without a switch that allows me to turn the lights on and off while riding, without risking my fingertips getting sliced off by the spokes as I am fumbling underneath my handlebar bag. (This did happen to me during PBP 2007 on a bike that didn't have a remote On/Off switch.)
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|Re: Schmidt Edelux II||Anton Tutter||10/2/13 4:52 PM|
Thanks for your approving nod, Jan. Now that I've convinced you of my design merit, I just have to convince you that my name really isn't Aaron :-).
When you take the existing Edelux design and generate a hanging variant to be used with front racks specially designed for headlight mounting, you are creating a narrow niche product, as you yourself admit. Given that, the concern over whether the end user would hook up the wires properly becomes trivial because anyone who has purchased this light is likely already getting a constructeur-built bike with great attention to build and installation detail. This is hardly rocket science and if anyone can't hook up a three-wire system they should be deferring to someone who can.
But I nonetheless did take ease of installation into account. If you look closely at one of the photos I posted, you can see the stripped ends of the conductors. There is a braided ground, a white wire which I designate the headlight power (dynamo power in), and a red wire which I designate taillight power (headlight power out). The color coding is perfectly logical and any consumer guide to a headlight with these wires could point all this out pretty clearly.
I agree that it is a luxury to have a stem switch, and convenience-wise, it's hard to top. I also happen to think they look good. However, as I pointed out earlier, the switch you have on your Herse is even more of a niche product than the inverted Edelux, that it's largely academic to discuss its merits over switches that are built in to headlights since less than 1% of cyclists will ever have this. It's simply not a reality for the majority of bikes, including customs, being made today. But I totally get your point, and if Boulder's stem switch wasn't as expensive as it is, I'd be putting one on my new Rawland Stag, one of the rare bikes that are actually compatible with it.
I'm curious whether Schmidt certifies their lights to be compatible with switching on at full speed. Peter White warns not to do this with the Supernova headlight, and I don't know whether that warning is targeted specifically to that brand, or if it is more general applicable to dynamo headlights in general. I do know that dynamos generate very high voltage at speed when no load is placed on them (not just "6V" as they say), so turning on a headlight at speed causes a large voltage surge to the headlight. I don't know what types of protection are built into different LED lights from various manufacturers, so despite the fact that this has posed no problems for your Edelux, I would be uncomfortable doing this with any headlight without express confirmation from the manufacturer that the headlight can take it repeatedly. Seriously, how much of an inconvenience does it cause to have to stop and turn your headlight on once you see dusk approaching? (Peter White asks this as well). It's not like you have to stop repeatedly to switch it on and off throughout the evening.
|Re: Schmidt Edelux II||Harald Kliems||10/2/13 5:00 PM|
Since the Edelux shares most of the innards of the Bumm Luxos/Cyo IQ II (or whichever one it is), it shouldn't have an issue with being turned on at speed: various Luxos/Cyo models have a light sensor that switches on the light at whatever speed you're at once it gets dark enough. I love that feature and despite the fact that my commute has several downhill underpasses where the light comes on for a few seconds at 45 km/h they still work fine.
|Re: Schmidt Edelux II||Jan Heine||10/2/13 5:03 PM|
I am sorry for the name mixup. The wiring issue is real, as many users install the lights themselves. I actually think the hanging version is much preferable for users who mount the light on their handlebars...
Switching on and off at speed: I discussed this with Schmidt. Obviously, the light sensor of the Edelux already does that whenever you ride through a tunnel or have some trees shading the road at twilight. However, the light sensor is behind the buffer of the capacitor. If you use the Edelux' built-in switch at speed, there is also no concern at all. Using a separate switch in theory could cause trouble, but in practice of many years on this system, it hasn't. Clearly, the electronics can handle it. I suspect the capacitor takes much of the power spike, but I am not an electronics expert... So to conclude, it's not an issue.
Compass Bicycles Ltd.
|Re: Schmidt Edelux II||joe b.||10/2/13 6:07 PM|
Have you noticed if the Cyo senso reacts to cars approaching from behind? On my IQ Fly sensos, overtaking cars trip the sensor and drop the headlight to standby until they pass--just the wrong time for my headlamp to dim! This happens even with my light mounted on the right-hand side below a bar bag. Because of this, I only use the senso feature during daytime to handle underpasses and such, switching the light to On at night (if I remember). Maybe the newer models have improved sensors?
|Re: Schmidt Edelux II||Harald Kliems||10/2/13 6:44 PM|
Nope, never experienced that with either of my sensor-equipped Cyos (model years 2010 and 2011 I think). They are, however, mounted either on the fork crown and underneath a handlebar basket. It seems plausible that mounting them on the side would make them more susceptible to car headlights coming from behind. Good to know...
|Re: Schmidt Edelux II||Andrew Squirrel||10/3/13 10:31 AM|
RE: senso lamps turning on and off
This can be solved with some simple analog (or digital) electronics that use a Hysteresis system to determine the on/off state of the lamp.
In effect there would be a temporary memory (has it been light or dark out for awhile?) that would be the primary influence of the current state. In this example, as a car's headlights are introduced they would need to be present long enough to be considered a valid reason to dim the headlight.
A good example of Hysteresis in every day life is the circuit used in your home thermostat. Notice how when your house temperature finally matches the 65 degree value you set, it doesn't rapidly switch your furnace on & off 100 times per second to perfectly match the temperature? You can thank the Hysteresis system installed.
My guess is that there is some form of Hysteresis already built into most of the Senso lights, perhaps it just needs a bit of improvement.
Personally I'm not a huge fan of the senso lights, I usually like to have full control of my lights being on or off (or just on all the time).
Luxos U with it's remote switch is great for the control freaks out there.
|Re: Schmidt Edelux II||Bengt Sandborgh||10/6/13 9:57 AM|
Aaron, I must ask: Why did you go into all the work required to swap the original cable when you already had a third conductor: the frame?
I have modified two hanging Edelux: I just attached the shield of the coax to the tailight connector on the circuit board and then ground the housing, I used conductive epoxy to "glue" a conductor to the aluminium housing.
|Re: Schmidt Edelux II||Anton Tutter||10/6/13 5:47 PM|
Your method is certainly easier and solves the problem of replacing the original cabling. I did consider relocating the shield to taillight output and grounding the circuit to the housing, but I did not want to use any adhesive to bridge an electrical contact. If there were a way to mechanically fasten a ground to the inside of the housing I would have done that, I didn't want any possibility of a conductive adhesive coming loose. I did these modifications for customers, with the expectation that the modifications will never fail regardless of riding environment or weather environment. That's not to say that the epoxy will fail, it may last you a very long time. But it's an unproven method to me, and I wanted to play it safe. I fully expect these headlights to fail intrinsically before my modifications fail.