Torch T2 Lighted Bicycle Helmet—Safety X 2.
A smiling bike ride is our goal, so less worries of trouble are part of the destination. I have long been an advocate of daytime light use, and of course we all use them when riding in the dark. Most riders feel a quality helmet is a standard part of their bike. Here in the T2 lighted helmet from Torch Apparel, you get both together in a nice wrap-around package that will cover both bases with ease. I was looking for the perfect compliment to match my goals for the ULTIMATE COMMUTER E-BIKE BUILD project, and I found just the thing in this T2 helmet.
They did some great upgrades from the original model and used a crowdfunder to help make it happen. Once I got my T2 I was really impressed with so many of its features. Right off it seemed so light I wasn’t sure they remembered to put the lighting system inside. Extra weight on your head is never good thing, so I have to think keeping it like a feather was an important part of this product. Not only did they succeed, the way the lights work and last between charges is amazing.
I have never been a fan of mountain bike helmets as it seems they don’t offer protection in anything other than a tip of your head incident. The T2 really wraps around well to afford the kind of coverage that most riders need and want. The last time we went helmet shopping that kind of protection was one of our main goals and many of the units out there just didn’t seem to have it. When I wear this Torch helmet I really feel that if anything were to happen, I would be standing tall afterwards.
Other than kids helmets, most come in two basic sizes it seems. The T2 is a one size fits all which at first I thought might be a concern. The included different pads (that stick in place nicely) allow this helmet to fit everyone that I allowed to try it. It also has a adjustment knob in the back for the plastic head band. I am sure in some extremes the fit won’t work for everyone, yet so far so good. For me the fit is comfortable and just snug enough for no movement, yet no pressure either. I have to think the Torch Apparel folks put some extra time in this part of the design, finding just the right contour to work for most.
With vents to keep you cool, it is really the built-in lighting that makes this special. With cold running LED lights and a non-stressed pair of lithium batteries, they don’t create any heat that I noticed. The thought of having these electronics so close to my head came to mind, yet batteries have evolved to the point of nearly 100% safety, so I wear it worry-free. I think the way it protects you from possible injury outweighs any concerns the lighting feature might add to the equation. So you know, the helmet, switches and the lights are weather-resistant.
The lights are particularly bright. On several occasions I have worn the T2 indoors and many shade their eyes from the glare, forcing me to lower the light to the reduced level. Both the front white light and the rear red light have 4 modes. High and low in non-flashing and the same in the flashing modes are your choices. With up to 36 hours in the low-power flashing setting, it tells you they did pack some decent battery power into the Torch T2, even though it is so lightweight it defies that number.
In the really bright setting, the T2 pumps out 6 hours of light between charges (long enough for most any ride). Charging is simple with the modern use of the USB cord. In fact the cord is a Y configuration that allows you to charge both batteries at once. Like so many LED lights nowadays, the light tells you when it is charging and when it is done. Another cool thing I like is how that same light tells you how much charge is left every time you turn the lights off. 4 blinks is full, 3 is ¾’s full and so on. Very smart.
One feature I don’t like is to turn off the lights you need to toggle through all the modes, as opposed to just holding the button for a bit. I do belive this is to accommodate the ‘charge left’ light blinking, as I have other modern LED lights that work in this similar way. Not a problem as it is so nice to be able to monitor how much charge you have available for the next use between charges. All-in-all, I think it is a good way to program such a lighting system.
The T2 comes in different colors, yet with no real decoration on them. This gives you the option of letting the solid color shine or going wild with paint or stickers. I do expect to see more T2 helmets around town, some with the the expressions the riders want to show-off emblazoned for all to see. It is a blank canvas of lighted excitement. And why limit the Torch T2 lighted helmet just for bike riding? I can think of so many sports that can fully capitalize on all the cool things it has to offer.
So I have embraced my new helmet and it has won me over. When I use it at night I can see its flashing light reflecting off buildings and four-wheeled vehicles telling me that I am as visible as it gets. When you add that to the lights on the bike already, I feel good and that keeps me smiling. When I wear it during the day it is that little extra bit of protection I like during a fun bike ride. A smart product for smart riders, the Torch T2.
I can see you, can you see me? Turbo Bob.
“The bicycle is the most efficient machine ever created. Converting calories into gas, a bicycle gets the equivalent of three thousand miles per gallon.”—Bill Strickland, The Quotable Cyclist.
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Here are a couple of the many videos I took that show the T2