We still have the first helmet we ever used (back in the 1970s): the iconic hard-shell Bell helmet. The outside of the helmet has a hard plastic outer shell, mostly to protect against crashes into curbs, rocks, etc. Inside the helmet, for shock absorption, is the expanded polystyrene lining. “Fit and comfort” is provided by the foam padding strategically located at various contact points. It was a game changer back then.
Head protection has come a long way since those days. Today, many riders don’t remember the time when bike helmets were not a required part of cycling gear. Everyone is, of course, much better off today. Still, there is a lot of room for improvement. We are happy to say that the folks at Lumos are doing something significant about it.
Enthusiasts have always been keen on figuring out ways that the latest technology can be adapted for the bicycle. We have noticed a trend toward incorporating the tech directly into the gear worn by the cyclist, especially safety-oriented ideas for lighting and signaling.
Lumos LED Bike Helmet
- Super bright LEDs
- White front lights
- Red rear lights
- Left/right orange turn signaling lights
- Steady or blinking options
- Integrated accelerometer
- Wireless handlebar remote control
- Weather-resistant design
- Rechargeable batteries
- 440g / 15.5 oz
The Lumos’ physical design is similar to most contemporary helmets: hard exterior layer surrounding a shock dispersing frame, lots of vents for plenty of air flow, and adjustable straps with a rotary dial for a proper fit.
Lumos meets the following bicycle helmet safety standards:
The fit and finish of the pieces used in the helmet’s construction is impressive. Especially nice is the translucent layer covering the LEDs. All of the seams blend smoothly with no edges that will snag or catch.
There are 10 white LEDs in the front, 16 red LEDs in the rear, and 16 orange LEDs per side. The power button and the charging port for the rechargeable 1000 mAh battery is in the back. The battery lasts approximately 6 hours on flashing mode and 3 hours on solid mode. Recharging takes approximately 2 hours. Assuming 30 minutes of usage per day, this translates to about a week or so of use per charge.
Wearing a Lumos helmet will definitely give the rider greater visibility, day or night. The ability to give clear turning intentions will absolutely enhance safety not just for the cyclist, but to drivers and pedestrians as well.
One unexpected feature of the Lumos was the ability for the helmet to indicate that the cyclist is slowing, just like the brake lights of a car. It does this by turning on both the Left and Right indicators in red. Note that the accelerometer is not in the helmet, but in the remote signal trigger (if it was in the helmet, the movement of the head would cause too many false signals).
Now that we have had a chance to examine this helmet first hand, it is not hard to see why the Lumos Kickstarter project was such a huge success. With this project under their belt, we wonder where Lumos folks will go from here???
Oh yeah… we should have the FirstUse post ready by the end of Spring!
Links to items mentioned: