Does anyone have any lighting suggestions for our Xtracycle hooptie? We'd like to keep it very visible (precious cargo in there) especially when viewed from the side.


Was thinking about an options such as these wrap around lights. Though would prefer something that would make the bike look a little less like a Christmas tree :)


5 Answers 5


If you go to any reasonably well stocked bike shop (or the bike department of a large department store) they will have a fair assortment of bike lights and reflectors. In particular there are a lot of different battery-powered LED flashers available:

enter image description here

Mounting the light/reflector sometimes requires a bit of ingenuity, but you can often do pretty well using a cable clamp from a hardware store to attach to a rack or seat stay (if the light doesn't come with something suitable):

enter image description here


You could try something like the fibre flare on either side of the rack fibre flare

They can be found at http://fibreflare.com/ and they also do a range of different colours for the side if you don't want to do red on the side of the rack. http://fibreflare.com/collections/fibre-flare-side-light-colours

  • I'm for this option, but there are others. Those look pretty pricey. I have Bike Brightz LED Bicycle Safety Light on my kids bikes and mine. They work really well: amzn.com/B0030DDB3M You may be able to find them in departments stores as well (this is where I got my first one)
    – BPugh
    Oct 15, 2014 at 18:58
  • Don't forget to mark your chosen answer.
    – Dan
    Oct 15, 2014 at 20:00

Why not just a regular seat post rear light on that thick tubing pointed to the side? You can also get small lights on the spokes.


My main question is "why is side visibility so important?" If you're riding on a road and you have a good tail light and headlight, you shouldn't have side impacts unless you're running stop lights or stop signs or something.

However, there are some options.

Scotchlite tape is a fantastic thing, though passive (but with a decent range of angles with visibility).

I'd say use one of the multitude of tail lights, reflectors in your wheels, reflective sidewall tires, or one of the many side lighting systems that are now being sold may be useful. Do note that you shouldn't have enough lighting on the sides to be distracting (like those people in the second picture).

  • Thanks. It's important as my kid is in there and I'm a neurotic parent :) Oct 14, 2014 at 16:05
  • 1
    "shouldn't have side impacts unless you're running stop lights or stop signs or something" Or if a car is "running stop lights or stop signs or something" because he didn't see the bike. Many drivers have no problem rolling into the bike lane to make a right-turn while looking only for cars, so anything that the bike can do to make himself visible as the driver approaches the intersection is a good thing.
    – Johnny
    Oct 14, 2014 at 18:43

You can get tires with reflective sidewalls that are quite effective. We have reflective Schwalbe Marathon tires on our bikes and it makes a significant difference at night for traffic coming from the side. The coverage arc is pretty decent, I'd say at least 90 degrees.

The look something like this:

enter image description here

  • Excellent idea - I've got these on my bikes and they're the same concept. They're much more obvious while moving too, and don't require new tyres/tires dx.com/p/… A 12 pack for $3 could even do a couple bikes.
    – Criggie
    Oct 24, 2015 at 21:49

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