Overade Life dials down the geek factor for light-up bike helmets
While there are now a lot of light-equipped bike helmets on the market, many of them look quite tech-geeky. The Life helmet is different, in that it's sleek and stylish while still packing in multiple lighting features.
Currently the subject of a Kickstarter campaign, the Life is made by French firm Overade. Among other things, the company has previously brought us a folding helmet and LED turn indicators that can be added to third-party helmets.
At first glance, the Life looks pretty normal … fashionable, even. It has a strip of white COB LEDs in its brim, however, along with a strip of red ones in the back. These front and rear strips put out a maximum of 1,200 and 400 lumens, respectively.
One 3-hour charge of the 1,600-mAh lithium battery should reportedly be good for 20 hours of runtime at the default Steady output mode. Four other modes are available, which optimize either light intensity or battery life.
Utilizing a handlebar-mounted wireless remote, the user can activate a turn indicator feature that causes the rear LEDs to start flashing amber in the direction of the upcoming turn. And if a set of Overade's OxiLum bike lights are being used, they will likewise signal the rider's intentions. The helmet beeps while this is happening, to let the rider know that the feature is indeed working.
Additionally, thanks to an Overade OxiBrake wireless pressure sensor on one of the bike's brake levers, the rear LEDs will temporarily illuminate brighter when the rider applies the brakes.
Whereas many other manufacturers use an accelerometer to activate their helmet's brake light, Overade claims that such systems may not be triggered by gentle braking, they can get "confused" by head movements, plus (if they incorporate a timer) they may shut off before the rider has completely braked to a stop.
As an added feature, the rider can manually activate the helmet's headlight strip to start flashing brightly – for maximum visibility – in particularly sketchy situations.
Some of the Life's other features include vegan leather straps with a quick-release magnetic buckle, an optional visor for eye protection, plus the ability to be completely disassembled for repairs or upgrades. It's being offered in just one size that fits head circumferences of 55 to 61 cm (21.7 to 24 in) and is claimed to tip the scales at 450 grams (15.9 oz).
Assuming the Overade Life reaches production, a pledge of US$99 will get you one – the planned retail price is $199. Its features are demonstrated in the video below.