Introduction: Lightrider DIY Bike Light

Picture of Lightrider DIY Bike Light
Made a DIY version of the revolights

total cost for one wheel is about 35 dollar

instead of a microcontroller i use simple reed magnet switches

the two outer rings consist of 18 Led's in 6 groups each all is powered by two AA batteries they are located on the hub

the only thing i don't have because i use the reed switches is the cool animation like revolights when the wheel stands still


36x High Power 8mm Led's (18 on each side)
2x two meter long Aluminum stripes 15mm wide (in my case shortened to 1,75 meter)
6x Reed magnet Switch
2x 2meter 7 pin flat ribbon cable (one for each side)
2x 7 pin mini plugs (for easy installation)
Zip ties to mount the whole thing on the wheel

Soldering iron
Hot glue gun


adamrabbit made it! (author)2014-06-13

I love it :

I tried the first time with just tape... just to make sure I had it right. It worked!... and looked horrendous.. (first pictures)
My second try (second picture) looks much better! It's soldered this time... and has rear facing tail lights :D

Thanks so much for your inspiration!

VanS1 (author)adamrabbit2015-11-01

Ahhh i like the red light on the back. How did you go about this?


adamrabbit (author)VanS12015-11-01

It's just one white strip on the outside, one red one on the inside, wired oppositely. The white uses a lot more power than the red so it would always go out first - definitely need a better power system. If I do this again I'll try to figure out arduino because there are just waaaaay too many wires here!

VanS1 (author)adamrabbit2015-11-01

Any idea where to buy reasonably priced Reed magnet Switches? Obviously more you have lower latency, but all im finding is about $2 for one.

adamrabbit (author)VanS12015-11-01

Yeah, actually, I live far away from even amazon US... I use aliexpress for simple products.

I bought these reed switches first, which are really cool because you can see inside, but they're a bit fragile (glass) for this project:

finally settled on these:

and got these LED's
(they were $13 and are still working great... now they are a crazy $125, you gotta search again )

and this tape is excellent!

Just keep in mind when buying from aliexpress that shipping times are often 19th century (literally 1-2 months) unless you pay for other shipping, and then might as well just use amazon.

VanS1 (author)VanS12015-11-01


VanS1 (author)adamrabbit2015-11-01

Any idea where to buy reasonably priced Reed magnet Switches? Obviously more you have lower latency, but all im finding is about $2 for one.

VanS1 (author)adamrabbit2015-11-01

Any idea where to buy reasonably priced Reed magnet Switches? Obviously more you have lower latency, but all im finding is about $2 for one.

JoshuaF3 (author)adamrabbit2014-11-17

Hey I see you've made it using led strips. Are the led strips sitting on an aluminum strip?

adamrabbit (author)JoshuaF32015-11-01

Actually it's some kind of flexible plastic strip - not a lot of materials where I am.

VanS1 (author)2015-11-01

So I guess im not 100% sure how Reed magnet Switchs work, but they dont start to get messed up at higher speeds from sentrafrugal force do they?

toyzweee (author)2015-05-14

can you please make a step by step instruction?

Luziviech (author)toyzweee2015-08-22

why do you need one? It's pretty simple. You start with the outer rings that hold the leds, depending on what leds (single ones, strips, etc) you wanna use and decide how many sections you wanna have on that ring. Then you buy the equivalent amount of reed-switches and some pin-cables that have the "specific amount" of pins plus one for the positive battery terminal. Put your leds on the ring and start connecting each pin with a section, connect the positive with all of them. Then you go for the inner ring and connect the same amount of reed-switches in a circle and connect them all to the negative battery terminal on the one hand and to the equivalent section of the outer ring on the other hand, just have to make sure that each reed-magnet is connected to the section that beams at the front when this specific reed-switch passes the magnet. And if you want to make things easy, you connect the inner and outer rings with connectors.

SteveP10 (author)2015-06-08

stonioni (author)2014-12-07

and if this would be powered by electromagnetic induction? i did a personal version of the magnetic induction powered tail light, check out:

imagine to substitute the magnetic switches with coils, and put a magnet
strong enough on the fork... with a little capacitor for every led
section i could it's possible to achieve an amazing result.

Diyler (author)stonioni2014-12-12

that's actually a pretty good idea the only problem would be that it stops lighting when you stand still.

stonioni (author)Diyler2014-12-13

Yea, it's true. Would be very complex to add capacitors for every section... Now i'm testing this circuit, maybe you could be interested into:


JoshuaF3 (author)2014-12-05

What do you mount the leds on? Aluminum strips? I was wondering if they would get corroded over time.

Diyler (author)JoshuaF32014-12-12

yes i used aluminum strips they don't corrode

dmuzial (author)2014-12-02

Can anyone mention how this holds up in wet conditions? Long commute to work that is not always dry.

Diyler (author)dmuzial2014-12-02

never had a problem it's just 3 volts.

HumbertoRA (author)2014-02-15


excellent project!!! I will made it


adamrabbit (author)2013-12-03

This is excellent! How's version two coming? I'm really excited that I can do this myself!!

T Fergesun (author)2013-11-22

Any update on more simple and clear instructions, I really want to build this! and those Revo lights are just ridiculously expensive!

IAmDougsInstructables (author)2013-10-30

Could this be done with LED strips?

Seems like it would require less wiring? They can be cut into 3 LED sections and wired to the reed switches... Are they too low powered?

Of course you can use led strips. I am actually into building one with led strips for my rear wheel, i just have to finish them. They lay around in my workshop since three months or so :D

When i finish them, i make a new instructable for Version 1.0

naught101 (author)2013-09-18

What kind of output do those LEDs have? About 8000mcd?

kcoetzee (author)2013-08-13

Any idea as to when 2.0 is being uploaded? Keen to build one but will wait for the 'updated' model :)

Diyler (author)kcoetzee2013-08-13

Sorry that you guys have to wait so long. I hope i get it done in about a month or so, the problem is that i have not much free time to do it.

But i will upload the instructable as soon as possible!

flashfreak (author)2013-08-07

Hey, so glad to see this.. my wheels are too big to fit the bought version... anything new on your 2.0 version? I'm going to start building it in like 8ish days... cheers!

Wodanford (author)2013-07-20

This is so cool! Due to being handicapped, I am bound to a wheelchair. The revolights are out of my reach because of the tires having the wrong dimensions. This is something that comes very close to the revolights and I am so going to give this a try!

caniffis (author)2013-06-16

not sure if you have found your batteries yet, if not 23A 12v batteries are the ones to go for, very small and perfect for LED strips.

Diyler (author)caniffis2013-06-24

Thanks for the tip!!!!

i have tried it out and they last very long

version 2.0 will be ready in about a month.

cepi85 (author)2012-09-24

cool video!!!!

Diyler (author)cepi852013-05-15

Thanks :)

Adambowker98 (author)2012-11-01

Could you give some more instructions? This is super cool but I can't really tell how you made it.

Diyler (author)Adambowker982013-05-15

hey sorry for the late reply, right now i´m building a lightrider Version 2.0

it will be ready in a bout a month or so, then i post a new instructable which should be much simpler to build

Mr. Gadgets13 (author)2013-01-05

I think it's a great idea to use reed switches!

Diyler (author)Mr. Gadgets132013-05-15

hey thanks. yeah it´s simple and cheap thats why i´m use them.

wobbler (author)2012-10-25

You have complicated the circuit diagram slightly. It's not necessary to show the wires from the reed switches rotating around to the LED groups. e.g. the white connection from the reed switch could go straight to the LEDs with the yellow LEDs. It's not actually necessary to offset the wiring with respect to the reed switch in reality, you can just position the magnet to a different angle relative to the hub and the LED lighting point should consequently move also.

I presume as you don't have an on-off switch that you leave the bike with the magnet in a dead zone to stop the batteries wearing down when you're not riding it?

Diyler (author)wobbler2012-10-26

yeah you are right it´s a little bit difficult but it´s only a prototype

the on off switch is on the battery case look close

right now i´m into building a much simpler version with smd led strips so it´s less soldering and simpler to install

and a really detailed instructable so anyone can build it

wobbler (author)Diyler2012-10-26

No problem- Instructibles is all about prototypes and how they develop!

I would show the on-off switch in the circuit diagram also. Regarding SMD leds, you can find these cheaply in poundshop (or your equivalent) bike lights. You just have to use a sharp knife to cut though the chip connections and then wire straight to the LEDs.

Look forward to seeing your new improved mk2 version.

Diyler (author)wobbler2013-05-15

hey sorry for the late reply i´m not going to use sms leds alone. I will use led strips

Roshy10 (author)wobbler2013-04-06

You are right, the circuit diagram is overly complicated, but it shows how it is laid out in real life, which is helpful when trying to build this yourself

haemophilic (author)2013-04-14

Hi, Good job you have here. I wonder whats the outcome of your smd led strips version? Hope to hear from you soon.

Diyler (author)haemophilic2013-05-15

hey sorry for the late reply, the led strip version is doing well, i hope in about a month it´s done.

right now i have the aluminum rings done and the led strips are glued to them, next step is soldering and searching for a compact 12 volt battery.

jim_2000 (author)2013-03-15

I love it! I always thought the animation the revolights plays at stops would get annoying to drivers and cyclists.

Dranem (author)2012-12-13

Sie können über "", ein licht mit kein batterie sehen. Achtung! der rote led sind mit 1.7-2 V versorgt.

You can seen on, a light without baterie. Be carefull! Red LED are fed with 1.7-2V.

En tout cas, beau travail......

P.S. :
Here the way i use on my bike (in french, but lots of pics):

lio34 (author)2012-12-07

Hy !
Some news about your much simpler version with smd led strips ?

Diyler (author)lio342012-12-07

i have so much to do right now but i think it will be done in about a month or so the aluminium rings are ready right now so its just a matter of days or weeks i think i will do theme in the christmas holidays

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