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Black Crater Gear Cord lock light



Innovative but needs better weather seals.

At every product is thoroughly tested for as long as it takes to get a proper insight into how well it works. Our reviewers are experienced cyclists that we trust to be objective. While we strive to ensure that opinions expressed are backed up by facts, reviews are by their nature an informed opinion, not a definitive verdict. We don't intentionally try to break anything (except locks) but we do try to look for weak points in any design. The overall score is not just an average of the other scores: it reflects both a product's function and value – with value determined by how a product compares with items of similar spec, quality, and price.

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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.

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Make and model: Black Crater Gear Cord lock light

Price: 9.99

Weight: 8g

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.

Rate the product for quality of construction:

Needs better weather seals, fails when it gets too wet.

Rate the product for performance:

Surprisingly good output given the size.

Rate the product for durability:

Fine in showers but dropped into shallow water caused ours to fail, demanding it was stripped and dried thoroughly.

Rate the product for weight, if applicable:

Doesn't really weigh anything!

Rate the product for value:

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

Overall rating: 6/10

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)

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