How to Build Your Own Bike Lights

How to Build Your Own Bike Lights
For anyone who wants to ride his bike in the dark, safety is a big concern.  Reflective gear on your bike or clothing is a must. Installing a light will ensure that oncoming traffic sees you better and help you see where you are going. Building your own light can save money and make for a great project.


Difficulty: Moderately Challenging

Things You’ll Need:
  • 1 ten-watt bulb
  • 1 bulb socket
  • 1 PVC female cap
  • 1 trap adapter
  • 1 nut and bolt
  • 1 no-hub coupling
  • 1 RCA male/female cord
  • 1 hanger to attach light to bike
Step 1
Decide what type of light you'll use.  You should do a little research to see what works best for you.  Some people use LED lights, but they tend to be weaker.  Halogen lights are priced well and are bright, but they are hotter and use more energy.  For this example, we will use an MR16 halogen bulb.  Make sure to buy an appropriate socket for the bulb.
Step 2
Choose a body to house your light.  The body can be made out of simple items picked up at the plumbing department of your hardware store.  Pick up a PVC female cap (the cap that the light will fit into) and a trap adapter to create the body.
Step 3
Place the socket and a nut and bolt close to you. Take hold of the bulb and place it next to the body conduit hanger.
Step 4
Use a no-hub coupling to make a sleeve for the bulb. Remove the rubber from inside the coupling. Cut it almost in half, but not all the way. You basically want to leave a strip of about ¾ inch to connect the two halves. You will use this as a casing for the bulb, and having it mostly separated will make insertion easier.
Step 5
Drill a small hole into the hanger, and use a small nut and bolt to attach the hanger to the hub.
Step 6
Drill another tiny hole in the body. Cut your RCA male/female cord 3 inches from the end.  Stick the cord in the hole you just drilled and solder it in the socket.
Step 7
Solder the other end of the cord to your battery pack.  A good set of batteries to use would be 10 AAs, held in a container.  Get rechargeable batteries, because this will save you money down the road.
Step 8
Connect it all, and start riding.  The battery pack should last three hours if you're using a 10-watt bulb.

Tips & Warnings

Make sure your light won't go out and has a good charge before you ride long distances at night.

Article Written By Kelsey Childress

Kelsey Childress runs a freelance creative business called Awen Creative that specializes in SEO Web content, social media marketing and blogging. She has been writing for online and in-print publications for over six years, and has a bachelor's degree in English literature and creative writing from Kansas State University.

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