About this project
Dear Kickstarter Supporter,
Thanks for checking out our project. We hope you are as excited about revolutionizing the bike light industry as we are. With your help, we will morph the Revolights bike lighting system into an innovative solution used worldwide. We recognize these lights are different, but we're from the Bay Area where different is, well, sometimes better. People aren't used to wheel mounted lights, but simply put, we intend to change that.
Today we have a product (patent pending); a product we're proud of and believe in, but it's not complete! Our goal here on kickstarter is clear... we must further the revolution; the bike lighting revolution. We must raise enough support to take the Revolights bike lighting system through the rest of design and final product development. We will take them from where they are now (v4 below) to where they will be at the end of 2011, as a viable, user friendly, finished product.
What is the Revolights bike lighting system? Our lighting system consists of 2 thin profile LED rings (white in front, red in back) that mount directly to each wheel rim (just below the brake calipers) using a series of rim specific clips. Power is supplied via a thin wire to the hub where a lightweight and slim, USB rechargeable polymer lithium-ion battery is held in a special bracket. A small magnet is secured to the fork to provide speed and orientation information to the rings.
(Battery holding device and battery are not pictured, but they will be located on the hub. We promise, they will be very unnoticeable...so, actually, in fact they might just be pictured...)
Where's development at? We currently have the 4th design version complete of the rings and clips. The rings are made of lightweight aluminum alloy, which can be finalized into a production 5th design version quickly. The clips are currently developed for 700c Road and Hybrid Bike style rims only. The battery holding device is in initial design. The first design version of the battery holding device will be complete by the end of the funding duration. The developmental process will take Revolights right up to the point where they will be ready for manufacturing tooling.
What's the money for? As mentioned, we are on prototype design version 4. V4 currently demonstrates all of the critical functions: it is simple to install, does not interfere with the ride, and is fully functioning. But we need to incorporate further design elements to get it to a production ready status; i.e. to a place where it can be used by everyone. This involves construction of a 5th, possibly 6th, prototype version in quantities that will allow testers to assure the lights are ready for prime time.
So, in short: 1) prototype design, 2) prototype building, 3) tester program design, 4) tester acquisition, 5) program execution, 6) data analysis, 7) and repeat…
If funds remain, we will use them to build the working capital necessary for manufacturing the first production batch of the Revolights bike lighting system.
How long are we thinking this will take? If you become one of our supporters, you will get exclusive, regular updates on our status. We believe in transparency, both procedural and financial. We want you to know everything we know. We want your monetary support, but need your involvement. We've got some cool stuff planned. We promise you won’t be let down; let’s ride.
A bit about why we are doing this, and why we believe...
The invention began as little more than an after school idea, but has blossomed into a product that we believe can throw a new "spin" on bicycle rider safety.
On the road, bike lights contribute to rider safety in two ways:
1) lighting - allows riders to safely navigate at night by illuminating their forward path.
2) sighting - increases the rider's front, back, and side visibility which signals their presence (i.e. i am a bike) and location to those sharing the road.
Currently no product on the market provides both lighting and sighting at a functionally high level. Our solution, the Revolights bike lighting system, is a double threat. It represents the first fully functional lighting and sighting solution; more specifically, the first solution based on a spoke/rim/hub mounted design.
Let's use a few stats to paint a picture…
In 2008 :
● The two most frequent causes for the 52,000 reported bicycle accidents are collisions with motor vehicles (58%) and individual falls (30%).
● Of the 716 reported fatalities, 69% occurred in urban areas and 39% were between the hours of 5 p.m. and midnight.
● Nearly 70% of all nighttime Bicycle-Car collisions are due to inadequate side visibility
And finally our hypothesis… an increase in bicycle lighting and sighting has the potential to reduce rider injuries and fatalities. It's time to provide riders with a single bike light solution that allows them to safely experience the joy of riding, regardless of the time of day. Let’s shift the bike light paradigm.
Also, here's a sneak peak at the limited edition, kickstarter only t-shirt that all [Polka Dot jersey] and higher backers will receive. Check out our project update #7 for more info:
In the video it appears that the lights are blinking. That's an effect from the camera. The human eye will see a solid arc, in person, due to a phenomenon called persistence of vision (POV).
So far we don't know how tough they'll hold up riding in snow and being exposed to salt. We have had a number of messages from people in cold environments, so it's definitely a big deal. Wet and cold will be of no issue but the impact of snow/salt on the rings over time could be another story. We are taking comments like this into account as we finalize the design. We're on it.
This is a great suggestion and we've gotten multiple requests from motorcyclists and wheelchair users. While we do not currently have a design that is compatible, we do realize that a future design for use with motorcycles/wheelchairs is a huge opportunity and we'd love to achieve this goal in the future. We'll be sure to let you know if one of our future designs will be compatible via our kickstarter project page or http://revolights.com/. Please stay tuned.
There has been a lot of feedback regarding the stationary illumination pattern and we are currently looking into other options, including solid arc illumination. We'll be sure to provide an update when we have reached a final decision.
The term "patent pending" legally implies that a provisional patent has been submitted to the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
~134 lumens. Each LED is rated for 16.8 lumens of light, and since 8 LEDs are on at any one moment the total projecting forward is 134.4 lumens.
~ 4hrs in the front; longer in back. The current battery spec'ed is a 1000mAh battery. 8 LEDs sink about 250mA total during operation, making for about 4h of runtime.
We are currently in contact with legal to determine exactly what colors are available. We're actively pursuing clarification and will be sure to let you know as soon as we do.
The production version will absolutely be waterproof.
Currently, they are not, but future versions are planned. On v4 we decided to use Lithium ion polymer batteries because they are an efficient way to power LEDs.
The Revolights bike lighting system can only be installed (and uninstalled) with your wheel removed. Therefore they are not, in the current v4 easy to steal. They are only as easy to steal as ones wheel. We consider thievery a certain design priority.
The current version (v4) weighs approximately 6-8 ounces per wheel. The weight of the production version is not yet available as we are still finalizing the design.
Currently the Revolights bike lighting system is developed for Road and Hybrid 700 series rims, (aka 700c aka 622mm). If you don't know your rim size please email any one of the founders with any numbers you can find in your tire/rim and we will figure it out! They will be adapted to more sizes in the future, this is just our initial target.
v4 includes a magnetic timing mechanism that calculates your speed and, based on an algorithm, maintains the illuminated arc size and position. There are plans to incorporate an accelerometer into future designs as a more robust solution.