BMW Luxury Touring Community banner

1 - 20 of 54 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
83 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I search for this topic if it has been posted or if a poll was taken but I was unable to locate any discussion, so I apologize in advance if this topic has been “beaten to death” so here it goes…

Do you ride with your high beam on during the daytime? I have read on the other forums that this practice extends the low beam filament life (depending on make and model) as it turns the low beam off. However, my R1200RT’s low and high beam both stays on. I also did notice that I get seen more riding with my high beam on.
So let’s hear it from the RT riders here about the pros and cons of riding with the “HIGH BEAM” on at daytime…

DC
--------
2009 R1200RT
2009 Ultra Classic
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
726 Posts
To answer you question is also two ask why? On a R the head light is so bright that one don’t need to.
How ever on other bikes I have had to because the head light was , well insufficient at best! :rolleyes:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
545 Posts
Always. Clearly makes the bike more visible, and I'm satisfied that in the daytime it's not an annoyance to oncoming drivers, at least as adjusted on my bike. Also have the piaa driving lights on all the time. Same reason. Self preservation. YVMV.

Best, John
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
616 Posts
I never use the high beam during daytime. As Risky mentioned, the headlights are very bright.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,106 Posts
I used to ride my 99RT with high beam on all the time in the daylight. The low beam on the older RTs isn't as bright as yours. Then I had a problem :( The wiring to the headlight circuit on the 99 isn't a very heavy gauge, the wire and the plug on the back of the bulb melted. I re-wired with heavier wire and would have installed a relay if I had kept the bike. I do not know how the wiring is on the 1200 but assume BMW has beefed it up.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
391 Posts
Nope, low beam----I don't want anybody blinded nor do I want to stare into highbeams myself. The lows are very bright anyway.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,879 Posts
It might be different with the RT, but with my K1200LT, I replaced my low beam with an HID that is on all the time. I have a "flicker" on stock high beam that is on most of the time too for safety. If I'm on the interstate and not as worried about side streets and to keep from annoying people I might be following, I'll turn off the high beam and flicker.

I also ride with Moto lights on my fork for others to see me. I have PIAA mounted under my forks and use them mostly at night.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,408 Posts
Trojan said:
Always. Clearly makes the bike more visible, and I'm satisfied that in the daytime it's not an annoyance to oncoming drivers, at least as adjusted on my bike. Also have the piaa driving lights on all the time. Same reason. Self preservation. YVMV.
Oooooh! a pet peeve of mine :D

[soapbox mode /ON]

I'd like to suggest that riding with the high beam on is actually *decreasing* your safety.

While perhaps not instantly intuitive, even in full daylight a high beam can be a source of light bright enough to partially blind. It's not that the cagers can't see you -- they certainly do -- the problem is that the eye can only handle so much incoming light.

When the pupil is at its smallest diameter, the eye has no further means to restrict the incoming light. Many think that in the daytime, you can't blind someone with a high beam -- but that is not true.

High beams are blinding at night in part because the pupil starts nearly fully dialated and requires a relatively long response time to close down, and in part because even when fully closed down, pupil isn't small enough to provide enough incoming light reduction. You all know this from your real-world experience: don't you usually have to squint hard and look away if some jerk won't turn off his/her high beams at night, no matter how long the high beam is in your face?

In the daytime, because the pupil is already very small, it's not often that a new light source (such as an approaching low beam) can suddenly overload the eye "sensors," so many do not believe you can blind someone during the day with a high beam. But actually an excessive light load from a source such as a high beam CAN still put more light than the eye can handle on a driver's eyes, with the same result as at night -- squinting and looking away from the source. Thus, and particularly given that the typical motorcycle headlight sits at or above the typical cage driver's eyes, a motorcycle high beam can be just as blinding from overloading the eye as at night. I don't know about anyone else, but I don't want someone coming at me with a 2-ton weapon when they can't see/judge our closure -- especially if they are wanting to cross my path to get where they are going. The issue isn't whether the blinded driver has seen a high beam -- obvious they have -- the issue is that the excess glare can make it so that they are not able to know exactly where you are or what you or others are doing.

On top of that, running with a low beam on is every bit as effective in daytime as a high beam -- alternatively stated, if the brain-dead aren't going to "see" a low beam, they are no more likely to "see" a high beam because they are not processing the incoming stimuli to perceive a motorcycle (fact is, most of the brain dead are scanning for large, wide objects (cars, trucks), not narrow, tall objects which the brain does not recognize as a threat, i.e., trees).

The human eye is attracted to contrast as compared to the background -- contrast in motion, contrast in brightness and contrast in color, for example -- all of which are provided by a low beam. In other words, a low beam is just as "noticable" as a high beam -- WITHOUT putting out so much light that it hurts other drivers' eyes. (An aside: the subconscious attraction to contrast is why low beam headlight modulators are effective -- the "contrast" of the perceived motion from a 2-4 Hz flashing is highly notable to the brain (not trying to start a modulator debate -- I don't use one; I'm just recognizing the fact that they are highly effective)).

Not using the highbeam in the daytime also avoids giving blinded/annoyed people further a reason to hate motorcycles.

So! Turn off the high beams, please!

[soapbox mode /OFF]
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
472 Posts
... and besides, it's against the law to run the high beam in traffic, day or night.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
67 Posts
Always, along with Motolights. Maybe my eyes are different from others, but high beams in the daylight don't bother my eyes a bit. I believe I'm more visible with high beams on in the daytime, so that's how I ride.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,408 Posts
siman00 said:
but high beams in the daylight don't bother my eyes a bit.
??? The issue isn't your eyes -- it's the eyes of the people you're putting a lot of glare into, not all of whom have the gift of high light tolerance that you do (*especially* older drivers -- I'm only 52, and I'm already noticing that headlights are bothering my eyes more at night).

The fact that you may not be sensitive to the extra light doesn't begin to justify a "I'm ok, so it's ok for me to assume no one else is bothered" approach.

siman00 said:
I believe I'm more visible with high beams on in the daytime, so that's how I ride.
The Motolights are a *great* idea -- gives you a trianglar shape which is an eye-attracting high-contrast difference from the background -- with the low beam. No need to add distracting glare on top of that.

I'd ask you to reconsider whether the the high beam *actually* adds any safety -- if you set aside your subjective belief (which I'd suggest is actually not so much a belief but an unsupported *hope* that it makes you safer) and look into the facts, I believe you'll find that you are gaining *nothing* more in terms of your (already excellent with the Motolights) visibility, at the cost of annoying others.

And since I'm not known for sugar-coating, I'll add that IMO your justification is a selfish one -- the "it's ok to annoy/blind others because my eyes aren't bothered" justification borders on childish rationalization by any means to justify doing whatever you want, regardless of the consequences to others.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
729 Posts
mneblett said:
??? The issue isn't your eyes -- it's the eyes of the people you're putting a lot of glare into, not all of whom have the gift of high light tolerance that you do (*especially* older drivers -- I'm only 52, and I'm already noticing that headlights are bothering my eyes more at night).

The fact that you may not be sensitive to the extra light doesn't begin to justify a "I'm ok, so it's ok for me to assume no one else is bothered" approach.

The Motolights are a *great* idea -- gives you a trianglar shape which is an eye-attracting high-contrast difference from the background -- with the low beam. No need to add distracting glare on top of that.

I'd ask you to reconsider whether the the high beam *actually* adds any safety -- if you set aside your subjective belief (which I'd suggest is actually not so much a belief but an unsupported *hope* that it makes you safer) and look into the facts, I believe you'll find that you are gaining *nothing* more in terms of your (already excellent with the Motolights) visibility, at the cost of annoying others.

And since I'm not known for sugar-coating, I'll add that IMO your justification is a selfish one -- the "it's ok to annoy/blind others because my eyes aren't bothered" justification borders on childish rationalization by any means to justify doing whatever you want, regardless of the consequences to others.
I have a feeling you don't buy into "Freedom of Speech" when it comes to straight pipes on V twin motorsicles :D

Oops, on topic, low beam only for me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
431 Posts
No.

And being blinded by oncoming traffic, be it a car, truck or bike, is one thing that really pisses me off. Most times are from mis-aimed lights but to do it deliberately is downright ignorance.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
545 Posts
Trojan said:
Always. Clearly makes the bike more visible, and I'm satisfied that in the daytime it's not an annoyance to oncoming drivers, at least as adjusted on my bike. Also have the piaa driving lights on all the time. Same reason. Self preservation. YVMV.

Best, John
You honyockers have provided food for thought. I've been satisfied with the above, as the lights are presently adjusted on my bikes - however, I'll test 'em out again promptly. Might also be we're pretty much just as visible with the dim light on, rather than the bright. I'll have a second look at that too.

Slightly off topic, but in the spirit of it - thanks again to Ellie for the High-Vis thread. All that stuff together promotes self-preservation. With each passing year, I seem to have a more keenly honed sense of self-preservation. Unlike at age 18, riding while standing on the seat of a Yamaha Big Bear wearing nothing more than cut-offs, showing off for the girls. Yep, times have changed.

Best, John
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
737 Posts
ALMOST never. I run low beams ALMOST all the time during the day. As previously noted, ill-adjusted low beams, high beams or running fog/driving lights during the day DO blind oncoming traffic momentarily. This is especially true of older - and when I say older, I mean mid-lifers or those with vision problems - drivers that may have astigmatism, those that may have had Lasik surgery that left them with halo effects, et al. In extremely heavy multi-lane city traffic I will use my high beam and my PIAAs to flash if it appears someone MAY encroach on my riding position. I do believe there are times that people "see" us in such cases, but don't realize the proximity of our smaller vehicles, to there's. A quick flash of the lights does work effectively in those situations - or at least always has for me.

That said, I do not believe conspicuity is as effective as many/most believe when it comes to motorcycling. I prefer to generally ride like no one can see me, taking full responsibility for my own safety on the bike. That has worked for me for 55 riding years, with a single exception when an older guy was coming down off Independence Pass in CO in blinding [to him] snow and he was hugging my side of the road coming around a blind curve. I avoided him on HIS right and got off the bike in time to watch it head down off the cliff edge and down the mountain. Totaled the bike - which I bought back from the ins co and fixed - took 3 weeks to get it back on the road and put just short of 200,000 on it.

As technology has improved, I have noted that a lot of riders now ride LESS focused as they fiddle with their radios, GPS's and IPods when they ride. I think we all need to re-evaluate what we do on our bikes and recapture that "deliberate" riding style that has kept so many of us older riders safe since motorcycles came to be our primary mode of transportation.

Ride Safe!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,408 Posts
steveaikens said:
That said, I do not believe conspicuity is as effective as many/most believe when it comes to motorcycling. I prefer to generally ride like no one can see me, taking full responsibility for my own safety on the bike.
:thumb: :thumb: :thumb: +1 (or 2 or 3)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,408 Posts
New2rt said:
I have a feeling you don't buy into "Freedom of Speech" when it comes to straight pipes on V twin motorsicles :D
The sound *great* -- at a drag strip!

On the street, they are useless as "warning devices," and have resulted in too many motorcycle bans and ill feelings for the rest of us as a result their selfish compensation-need antics.

Naw, they don't bother me much ... ;)
 
1 - 20 of 54 Posts
Top