LUCI EMRG INFLATABLE SOLAR POWERED LIGHT
The Luci EMRG Inflatable Solar Light from MPOWERD is a multi-purpose lightweight solar powered light. It is not cycling specific, but Luci has proved herself a helpful companion in a number of settings. Not surprising; EMPOWERD use money from each purchase to support distribution of lights to people who live in areas where there is no electrical supply.
Design and spec
Packing down to a tad over three centimetres from its fully inflated ten and a half (depends on your puff), Luci does not take up much space in pannier or saddlebag, but she does pack quite a punch. Four LEDs give 25 lumens of light distributed through translucent soft-but-strong plastic walls. The transparent basis designed to act as a flashlight.
Inflated through a neat plastic valve - recessed when not in use - Luci is, effectively, a drum of light capable which can sit on any flat surface, be lodged at an angle, or hung using the plastic strap on the top.
Four modes and power are controlled by a press button sitting amidst the solar panel on top of the light. I have not yet powered-up unintentionally. Bright, super-bright, flash and SOS modes are just a click away. SOS delivers a morse code dit-dit-dit dah-dah-dah dit-dit-dit in alternate bursts of red and white red and white. Other modes provide a glowing white.
Charge times seem to be much as stated by the manufacturer - seven to eight hours in sunlight. Run times, too, seem in line; seven hours in bright mode. There’s no way of knowing charge level, so there’s a bit of guesswork involved when out and about, but Luci has not turned-off on me when fettling or route planning after dark.
Needless to say, Luci is waterproof and will float, but don’t overdo it.
At 68g Luci does not weigh you down; ideal for cycle camping tours, with no need to cart around spare batteries. Equally, charging requires sunlight, so fixing it to the top of a bar bag, rack or pannier helps. She gives off sufficient light for reading and studying maps, though if I were revising for an exam, I’d have a head-torch handy, too. Equally, basic fettling has been successful.
Luci has also been helpful in the shed for evening digs in the spares bucket. An attractive feature in the garden or campsite, the flashlight has not done the same job as a decent head-torch, but seems effective enough for general use.
The Luci family of lights run from the decorative to the functional. The EMRG offers an emergency beacon. Fortunately not used in anger, the SOS and flashing modes have attracted attention, but real use has been for on site fettling and planning. Lucy may join the kit for for challenge day rides of the longer addax variety.
You may also want to take a look at The Luci Original and the Luci Outdoor 2.0.
Cycle campers and long distance night-riders, as well as those who like to head for the back of beyond with limited kit and communication, will find Luci EMRG a good companion. Not cycling specific, but well-made, simple to use, and light. £14.50 ain’t cheap, though you may find it for less if you look around.