Learn more about BikingToronto and Singer Kwinter
Explore more posts like this: . , , , ,

Light Your Bike! Mini-Monkey Spoke Light Review

NOTE: This is a guest post by Emma Jenkin, who wrote a great post for BikingToronto back in September about making a DIY TRON LightBike, and returns to review Mini-Monkey Spokelights! Learn more about Emma at the bottom of this post.

It’s a little after 5:00pm and I’m leaving work. Mid-November. Of course it’s pitch dark outside. It’s depressing. It’s cold.

And there are cyclists out with no lights or reflective clothing. Other cyclists have a variety of red and white LEDs.  It should be noted that by law you need to have a white light on the front of your bike and a red light or red reflector on the rear of your bike from at least 30 minutes before sunset until 30 minutes after sunrise in this great city of Toronto. Sunset comes before 5:00pm and sunrise after 7:00am these days.

As I’ve written before, I don’t feel comfortable enough cycling home in the dark with two sole LED lights. My TRON lights help in a huge way. Then I was lucky enough to get my hands on a Mini Monkey Electric light.

Fresh from the package, the Monkey Electric is bare bones – a wired piece of plastic, accompanied by foam spacers, zip-ties, and a battery pack. I wasn’t sure how this little thing was going to light up my wheel like the website would have me believe. But after adding three AA batteries (not included) and playing with the buttons (three of them control the intensity, colour, and pattern of the lights) I was sold.

The lights were bright. And awesome. I could even make out the different patterns if I shook it hard enough.

Installation was a breeze. The foam spacers go between the Monkey Electric and your spokes, and all is held snugly in place with the zip-ties. A metal strap is even included as a thief-proof safety feature.

Riding with them? A blast. This week alone I’ve been complimented on them by kids, parents, police officers, and fellow cyclists. And while it feels great to be told by total strangers that your bike looks cool, it just goes to show how visible you are.

No means of exaggeration, I feel like I am riding a glowing dragon. It’s that much fun.

Happy (& safe & well-lit) riding!

About the author

Emma started commuting by bike in February of this year and loves it. She always stops at red lights, and wears a helmet. She works in communications at a national arts organization and adores Toronto.

You can learn more about this snazzy individual at about.me/emmajenkin or follow her on twitter at @indeedemma

RECENTLY ON BIKING TORONTO:

10407203_10153342691936264_7289502872289435657_n

OH YEAH! Sexy people stopping at a red light

I shared the above photo on facebook the other day, and it got such a good response, I thought I’d share it here too. Look at all these sexy people on bikes stopped at a red light (at a T intersection, no less). Sooooo hot. See it (and a good discussion) on the City of […]

17181811171_516c3e4ef3_b

PHOTO OF THE DAY: Messenger’s Line

Source: Original photo – by Phanciest on Flickr. Toronto via Flickr. See this and 7,000+ other amazing bike photos in the Biking Toronto Flickr Group.

OH YEAH! Toronto lawyer helps cyclists pedal through ‘unjust’ legal system

For cyclists injured in an accident, navigating the legal system can be as hard as biking through downtown Toronto during rush hour, says lawyer Patrick Brown. “The system can be very complicated and a lot of cyclists don’t know what entitlements they have,” he said. That’s why Brown, an ardent cycling advocate, has partnered with […]

INFRASTRUCTURE: Help out with the Toronto Parks and Trails Wayfinding Strategy

  Help Toronto’s Parks, Forestry and Recreation department design their wayfinding system: What is Wayfinding? Wayfinding encompasses all the ways in which people understand their surroundings and navigate from place to place. Wayfinding is more than signs – it also includes names, landmarks, conventions, maps and new media. What is the Toronto Parks & Trails […]

NEWS: Car Columnist has trouble remembering bicycle turn signals; bitches about it

A car columnist for the Globe whines about hand signals being too confusing for him.  Because remembering stuff is hard. He also blames car-bike collisions on drivers not understanding bike hand signals.  That’s totally the reason there are collisions.  It’s not drivers being inattentive or the self-righteous belief that being in a car means they should […]

CCv4DKBUUAEssXk

INFRASTRUCTURE: New Contraflow Bikelane on Florence St.

Having fun watching cyclists discover the freshly installed bike lane on Florence St. In just a couple minutes since I arrived, over a dozen eastbound cyclists who yesterday were going the wrong way on Florence illegally, have adjusted their lane positioning into the centre of the new contra-flow bicycle lane coming around the corner from […]

OH YEAH: Don’t make bicyclists more visible. Make drivers stop hitting them.

About 100 years ago, the auto industry pulled off a neat trick: It stole the public roadways from us. See, in the early days of the motor vehicle, there used to be this quaint idea that the person operating the giant machine should look out for other people. Then came mass production and the Model […]

17133104996_bb95de4a5a_b

PHOTO OF THE DAY: Richmond street

Source: Original photo – by Fixed in Silver on Flickr.  via Flickr. See this and 7,000+ other amazing bike photos in the Biking Toronto Flickr Group.

INFRASTRUCTURE: Pan Am Path Update: Launch Event May 16

Pan Am Path Art Relay Launch Event May 16 With the international attention that the Pan Am Games will generate, a unique window of opportunity will open to showcase the city’s natural assets to an international public. The Pan Am Path, a project initiated by an independent not-for-profit community-led organization called Friends of the Pan […]

HOW TO: Yvonne Bambrick tackles the commuting fear factor

Is it safe to cycle in a large city like Toronto? In her new book The Urban Cycling Survival Guide, Toronto cycling advocate Yvonne Bambrick attempts to address the “fear factor” that riders new to bike commuting might feel as they roll through our crowded streets.  In a conversation with CBC Radio’s Metro Morning, Bambrick said it […]

Recommended Lights

"Frog" Lights

Planet Bike Light Combo

Planet Bike 5 LED Tail Light
Recommended Books
See More Books