Black Crater’s cord lock looks gimmicky but quickly becomes a must-have. It’s a tiny three function white Led aimed at anyone enjoying the great outdoors. Powered by two CR1220 batteries, it attaches to clothing, sleeping bags, tents or anything with a cord. It's a great safety backup and powerful enough for map reading or fixing flats. Just a pity it isn't a bit better put together.
Weighing a mere 8g and measuring 35mm x 24mm x 22mm it threads on to anything with a drawstring from casual hoodies through to training jackets and tents. In a pinch you can mount it to your handlebars using a zip tie. Illumination is surprisingly good - enough to get home in an emergency should your main lighting system fail.
Quoted run-times (50 hrs flashing, 20 hours low beam, 12 hrs high beam) won’t set anyone’s inserts ablaze but appear accurate and given that it’s intended as a contingency tool, direct comparison with bike-specific LED lamps is unfair.
It's supposed to be weather resistant but the battery cover definitely benefits from a slither of Vaseline. Ours failed after being dropped into shallow water but made a full recovery when dismantled and allowed to dry.
The Cord Lock light is a very clever idea that could prove invaluable for nocturnal riding but build quality and weather sealing need improvement.
road.cc test report
Make and model: Black Crater Gear Cord lock light
Size tested: N/A
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
The Cord Lock Light is aimed at cyclists, walkers, climbers, runners and any other outdoor pursuits.
Tell us some more about the techincal aspects of the product?
Three LED lighting modes powered by two watch size batteries with run times ranging from 50 hrs flashing through to 12 in high beam. Weighs 8g.
Needs better weather seals, fails when it gets too wet.
Surprisingly good output given the size.
Fine in showers but dropped into shallow water caused ours to fail, demanding it was stripped and dried thoroughly.
Doesn't really weigh anything!
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
It performed very well when used as an emergency light but was let down by build quality.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Unobtrusive, tactile switch.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Effectiveness of weather seals.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes, with reservations
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes, with reservations
About the tester
Age: 35 Height: 1m 81 Weight: 70 kilos
I usually ride: Rough Stuff Tourer Based around 4130 Univega mtb Frameset My best bike is: 1955 Holdsworth Road Path and several others including cross & traditional road
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: cyclo cross, commuting, touring, fixed/singlespeed, mtb,
Shaun Audane is a freelance writer/product tester with over twenty-eight years riding experience, the last twelve (120,000 miles) spent putting bikes and kit through their paces for a variety of publications. Previous generations of his family worked at manufacturing's sharp end, thus Shaun can weld, has a sound understanding of frame building practice and a preference for steel or titanium framesets.
Citing Richard Ballantine and an Au pair as his earliest cycling influences, he is presently writing a cycling book with particular focus upon women, families and disabled audiences (Having been a registered care manager and coached children at Herne Hill Velodrome in earlier careers)