Product Review – Cleanskin Duo Mountain Bike Lights
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Guys, Mountain Bike’s Direct have come up with a great new light system: Cleanskin Solo and Cleanskin Duo. I have got a couple of those lights there. Let’s go and see what’s in the box and then head out for a test.
Again, the first impressions of the Duo nice design, nice 3D box, quite refined, looks quite good. Let’s open up and have a look inside.
Got the recharge battery pack, a little case with a couple of velcro straps, short plugin cable there. The Duo light system itself, again the metal case, power button on the back, mounting bracket on the bottom, short cable there, duo light system, feels really good, really solid, tough out of skin, looks good.
A couple of rubber straps there to mount the light on your bars and on your helmet. So a little go pro mount there, a little screw. Again, have to check that one out.
Helmet mounts with a couple of velcro straps there. Recharge for the duo lights. It is a normal power point charge, not a USB. Couple of more velcro straps and instruction menu. Basic instructions there. Warnings, contents, specs, and a few details on the back: up to 30 hours battery life, water-resistant, and four modes.
Connecting the lights with the battery is simply plug it together… a little flash there, one, two, three, four modes of operation. All the power button on the back and turns off. Recharge, quite easy, similar plug system and indeed normal power outlet.
Now, I am going to set up. Mounting on your bike and mounting on your helmet for the duo light system is identical to the solo. Battery pack here that goes around the top tube of your bike, cable through with the light system mounted on your bars. We have got the helmet mount with the velcro straps that loop through the vent holes in your helmet, fixed at the top, looped around, and then the light fixed at the top of the mountain bracket for the helmet mount set up.
You can see the battery is fully enclosed; a cable connects directly to the inside of the battery, a couple of good things there. Obviously, it is a sealed battery so it is not going to get water dust and dirt in it. But something that comes to mind is replacement for that battery. Now I have already contacted the guys just to understand about replacement batteries, how to go about getting them and what they worth.
Now, what I also want to do is test the battery life. It is one thing for manufacture to state how long you are going to get out of battery but it is another thing to test it. So manufactures have indicated up to 30 hours battery with the Duo. I have given the battery a full charge overnight, set it going, kicked off the timer and let it roll. As I said, manufactures have indicated up to 30 hours. I have run this in the low setting. Obviously, the brighter the setting, the more battery it is going to use. And I have got just over 12 hours with one charge which admittedly I thought that was pretty good. I didn’t get up to the 30 hours, but still a very good light life and a great little unit there.
Okay, now so what I want to do is I would like to mountain my battery pack on the top tube of the frame, obviously, oriented this way. The cable coming out of the battery to this end, plenty of cable length here and then mount the light on the bars either side of the stem is fine, turning the cable back around and connecting those two up, plenty of cable length there, obviously the battery pack can slide and sit anywhere you need to on the top tube so that it doesn’t get in the way of your bottles, cages, and all that sort of things. So let’s just connect that up. So under those velcro straps, just through those loops there, back over the top again, and same for the second one, really easy to do, nice and simple, but nice firm fitting there. I run the cable out through here.
What I am going to do now is we are going to mount the light with the bracket on the bar. So we are going to take the light system, and take one of these rubber bands here. I have gone for the larger of the two rubber bands. The smaller one appears too short. We loop that rubber band just around that little lug and then we are going to pull a tail of that rubber band up and around to the back side of that lug there like that. And then we can connect those two up like so and then we are in business. As you can see there is a fair bit of excess cable there which is good. Obviously, you can wrap those up, cable ties those together, on to your frame, something like that, and you are good to go, it is that easy. Really quick, easy system.
To take that off as simple as it was to put it on, disconnect that plug, undo that rubber band there around the bars and you dismounted that. And under the velcro straps… again really, really easy.
Now this time, we are going to mount the light to your helmet. Now what we are going to do here is use this helmet mount bracket that came with the set. Plenty of straps there. And what I find is using the ventilation holes in our helmet. We use this way to do this, the velcro strap through the hole there.
What we are going to do is come down through your helmet and back up through those slots and on the back of the bracket and finish off to the top of the velcro. I am going to do that on both sides. As you can see, these straps are really, really sticky which is great but they tend to catch on everything including the padding on the inside of your helmet which takes a bit of maneuvering.
And as you can see there the two velcro loops there, the bracket on the top, and all those tails through. As I have said, they are really, really long and give you plenty of flexibility there where you may like to mount this bracket depending on the helmet shape and style that you have. Pull that through nice and firm, press it down there and for me these tails here I probably cut those off, a couple of centimeter from the end just so they are not flapping around because really they are, they just took away.
What we are going to do here is take the light. We are going to mount it to the top of this bracket here. Again, keep the cable to the side. This one is a little bit awkward here. We are going to get one of the rubber bands here. And we have to tuck it down through here, as we did with the handlebar mount, fitted off to the lug at the front and rear of that light.
So what I find the easiest thing to do first up is to put the rubber band through, grab your light, pop it on there like that, turning that around and grab that in front of that little rubber band, loop it over that lug on the front there and then you can easily just swing that around, just to get the light in the right position at the right angle once that’s mounted. That’s the light mounted on the bracket on your helmet, nice and firm, nice and steady. Obviously, it sits up few centimeters up there, so something to be mindful of when you are riding at night in the bush ducking under branches, trees that type of thing. The clearance you need for the light above your helmet is a little more than what you used to. Just be mindful of that otherwise you are going to get caught yourself knock your light off and all that sort of stuff. So just be careful with that and then at the battery pack. Obviously, we have got our cable that comes off here. My preference is to run the cable to the rear and take the battery pack and put it in the pocket in the back of your jersey that way nice and clean, nice and neat. Now you can see got a lot of leftover cable there, guys. You might want to tuck that in just keep that over way there and just be mindful of when you are out in the bush riding and coming through few different sections there, you don’t be skidding court or any hanging branches, or wings or anything like that. You are just going to get in the way. So you might want to tuck down the back of your jersey. But some guys who like travel with the backpack or camelback, just make sure it doesn’t rub on your back there, keeps it out of the way, all nice and neat, all clear, then you are ready to ride guys.
As you can see I have mentioned before about the extra height, the extra clearance you need to be aware of that, again riding under branches, used to ducking, just to clear your helmet, but now you have got a little bit extra height there, just keep that in mind, otherwise gonna clean yourself up, hit a branch, give yourself a thought and knock yourself off the bike. Alright, guys, ready to go and test the lights.
Simply click on the link below to find the test for the solo and the duo. For more great mountain biking information, visit www.sportsadventure.com.au
Click on the links below for –
Click on the links below to see prices for –
All Cleanskin products – Affiliate Link
Cleanskin Solo 1000 Lumen – Affiliate Link
Cleanskin Duo 2200 Lumen – Affiliate Link
Cleanskin Extension Cable – Affiliate Link
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So keep in touch and see you out on the trails.
About The Author
Rod Bucton, mountain bike fanatic from Mid North Coast, New South Wales Australia… helping middle aged men improve their lives with exercise, good nutrition and good health and while you’re at it follow Rod on Facebook or Instagram.
Like any sport, bicycling involves risk of injury and damage. By choosing to ride a bicycle, you assume the responsibility for that risk, so you need to know — and to practice — the rules of safe and responsible riding and of proper use and maintenance. Proper use and maintenance of your bicycle reduces risk of injury