Bicycles

A tilting bike light that's led by your head

A tilting bike light that's le...
The Speednite in hazard-light mode, with both turn indicators and headlight flashing
The Speednite in hazard-light mode, with both turn indicators and headlight flashing
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The Speednite's helmet-mounted motion sensor
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The Speednite's helmet-mounted motion sensor
The Speednite in hazard-light mode, with both turn indicators and headlight flashing
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The Speednite in hazard-light mode, with both turn indicators and headlight flashing
The Speednite's wireless handlebar remote
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The Speednite's wireless handlebar remote
The Speednite features a tilting 800-lumen headlight
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The Speednite features a tilting 800-lumen headlight
The Speednite's removable and rechargeable lithium-ion battery has a reported run time of about two hours at full headlight output
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The Speednite's removable and rechargeable lithium-ion battery has a reported run time of about two hours at full headlight output
The Speednite's computer is able to display data such as speed, cadence and heart rate from paired third-party devices
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The Speednite's computer is able to display data such as speed, cadence and heart rate from paired third-party devices
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If you're looking for a bicycle handlebar stem with a built-in headlight and computer … well, until now, that would have just been the SpeedForce. Hong Kong-based inventor Kim Luk has taken that concept and added to it, however. His water-resistant Speednite stem not only has a computer and an 800-lumen headlight, but the light tilts up and down as your head does, plus turning your head to either side triggers laser-projected turn indicators.

The basic idea behind the Speednite is that if you're looking at the bit of road that's right in front of you, your head will be angled down, so your light should be too. If you want to see what's farther up the road, your head will be tilted up. Likewise, if you're about to hang a left or right, your head will first turn in that direction.

The headlight-tilting and turn-indicating action is made possible by a motion sensor which is attached to the top of the helmet, that wirelessly communicates with the stem. There's also a wireless handlebar-mounted controller than can be used to manually control those functions – so no, you're not stuck with having the turn indicators come on every time you turn your head.

The Speednite's computer is able to display data such as speed, cadence and heart rate from paired third-party devices
The Speednite's computer is able to display data such as speed, cadence and heart rate from paired third-party devices

For its part, the computer is able to display data such as speed, cadence and heart rate from paired third-party devices. If paired with an iOS/Android app on your smartphone, it can also display things like GPS coordinates. Additionally, if the motion detector detects what might be an accident, the app will send a message to your emergency contacts (unless you stop it from doing so within 10 seconds).

The Speednite's removable and rechargeable lithium-ion battery has a reported run time of about two hours at full headlight output, or anywhere from 4 to 40 if set to a lower-output or flashing mode. Weight of the whole device is 330 grams.

Luk has turned to Kickstarter to finance production of the stem. A pledge of HK$1,200 (about US$150) will get you one in your choice of 90- or 100-mm lengths, when and if they reach the market. The planned retail price is US$299.

It's demonstrated in the following video.

Sources: Speednite, Kickstarter

Speednite - The world's first head motion controlled lighting stem for bikes

View gallery - 6 images
3 comments
JoshSkelton
I'm not one to knock innovation, but... a headlight that turns with your head? I had one of those 20 years ago. It had an elastic strap that went around my head. It was called a 'head light.'
Bob Flint
Hi Josh, go ahead knock innovation, the kid who thinks this is so innovative is probably not old enough to remember headlamps, oh but they still exist today, and are far more versatile than the $300 dollar gadget that has yet another detector that sticks to the top of your helmet, and you also have the phone interface, that's all the rage. Oh but then you forget those cool lasers....
sk8dad
I'm a fan of headlamps for their convenience in many applications like camping/hiking/climbing, but for cycling, bar/stem mounted lamps do have the advantage of enhanced depth perception (through shadow projection) and reduced glare (from dusty/foggy air). This is due to their increased reflection angle as compared to a head/helmet mounted light source. This effect became quite obvious to me when my headlamps started reaching the 400lm neighborhood. The glare got to the point of rendering the light useless. By contrast my bar-mounted lamp (at 750 lm) is plenty useful. This is the same reason why automotive fog lamps are typically mounted as low as possible to maximize the reflection angle. In this case, I think there is indeed a niche potential in such a product. That said, as a rider whose wheels are airborne quite often during a commute or a trail ride, I have reservations which mainly concern the mass and reliability of all the actuating mechanisms.