Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Monkey Light M204

The folks at Monkey Light sent me their M204 Bike Wheel Light to review. The M204 is a compact little unit consisting of a circuit board that contains the LEDs, a couple of switches and the electronics, a connecting cable, and a battery pack that holds 3 AA cells. The circuit board is completely coated in clear, flexy silicone and the battery pack and cable look nice and waterproof.

I put it to the test by submerging the whole thing in water. Yep, seems nice and waterproof.

The Monkey Light M204 comes with a bunch of nylon zipties and nice clear installation instructions. It also comes with a couple of metal security zipties if you are worried about someone stealing the light off your wheel.

You can use either alkaline or rechargeable AA cells in the Monkey Light. Depending on which brightess/color of lights you select, a set of alkaline cells can run the Monkey Light M204 for up to 60 hours.

Installing the light is a simple process taking less than five minutes. I installed the light on my pal Hugie's old Schwinn. Note: the reflecting looking thing at the top of the picture below is Hughie's front light, it's not part of the Monkey Light.

The Monkey Light itself is ziptied to the spokes.

The battery pack is ziptied to the hub, 180 degrees opposite the light to keep the weight somewhat in balance. Hughie and I didn't notice any real adverse effects of the weight but the Monkey Light people don't recommend going over 40 mph with the Monkey Light. I don't think Hughie's Schwinn has ever been anywhere close to 40 mph, so we figure he'll be OK.

You can toggle the light through 40 different color/brightness/flash combinations. All the modes are quite eye-catching.

When the wheel is in motion, you get to see the full effect.

When commuting at night, I get to see various lights and reflectors on bikes. Things that move with the wheels, things like the Monkey Light M204 or Salzmann Spoke Reflectors really stand out. They add a lot of visibility for not a lot of money.

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