Californian based NiteRider have been making making bike lights for over 25 years. Their extensive portfolio offers a wide range of cycle light options, from compact safety lights to powerful off-road headlights. We tested their commuter-friendly NiteRider CherryBomb 35 rear light.
As the name suggests, the NiteRider CherryBomb 35 has a maximum output of 35 Lumens, emitted from 3 LED bulbs. The light is projected via a multi-directional collimator lens. This means that the light is spread over a wider area and blind spots are eliminated. The CherryBomb is powered by two AAA batteries which means that you don’t need to remember to keep charging the light up.
However, it does mean that you need to keep an eye on the battery life and maybe have a couple of spares with you. NiteRider do kindly supply 2 heavy duty batteries with the light. The fixing mount features a hinged plastic bracket so you can adjust the angle of the light. This is fixed by a small screw and nut – to a thick rubber belt that is designed to fit around the seat post. The strap itself has for notches and should fit most seat posts without too much drama.
The NiteRider CherryBomb 35 kicks out an impressive amount of light. It’s 4 modes are practical for riding at night or during the daytime. The flash or strobe setting incorporates all three of the LED’s and flashes in a somewhat sporadic fashion. It certainly draws the eye but is almost distracting and probably better suited to daytime riding. There is a pulse setting, a high beam and a low beam setting. All of which illuminate very well. You have to circle through the modes in order to switch the unit off which can prove a little tedious. Especially as the on/off button is quite sensitive and I found myself switching the light back on several times.
The NiteRider’s rubber seal (the yellow bit) does a good job of waterproofing the unit. We simulated a test due to the lack of cooperation from the weather. The LED’s and batteries are all housed in the upper part of the light so that does mean the rubber seal has to stand up to the job of keeping water out.
The concern that I do have is that you need a coin or coin-like object to open the light. This can be a fiddly process in the short term. But also in the long term, it can damage the rubber seal trying to prize the light open. I’d definitely recommend you use batteries with plenty of life in them.
Lastly we come to the mounting bracket. This is a pretty common set up and fixing a rear bike light to the seat post is almost the norm now. The NiteRider CherryBomb 35 uses a good thick rubber strap for securing around the post. The notches allow you to secure the light securely in place. I like the fact you can adjust the angle and this is done quite easily thanks to its hinge. You may find the screw that holds the hinge together needs tightening over time but this part of the bracket works well.
The light unit has a (belt) clip on the back which is great for securing the light to a backpack or pannier bag – great for commuting. However, the light is let down by its ability to stay fixed to the mount. The clip slide into the bracket but doesn’t really ‘click’ into place. I found it too easy to slide the the light in and out – despite the small locking mechanism. The light also seemed unsecured when riding on rougher ground. This means that using the light off-road could leave you with just a mount and no light.
NiteRider CherryBomb 35 review conclusion
This bike light really has divided my opinion. It offers some really strong features. The light is powerful and the 4 modes all serve their purpose for varied riding conditions. NiteRider’s DVF (daylight visible flash) feature works very well and gets a big thumbs up. I am not a big fan of lights that still use these types of batteries though. Whilst easy to get hold of this seems a bit of a dated set up. Especially with more manufacturers now making sealed, rechargeable units. The bracket itself is nice and secure and the adjustable angel is a nice touch. However, I can’t get passed the fact that the bracket doesn’t hold the light very securely. That being said – it makes a good commuter light that can fix to loops and pockets on bags and jackets. The NiteRider CherryBomb 35 is reasonably priced at £19.99 rrp. But is well discounted at the time of this review in Wiggle and Evans Cycles.