Lumos Lighted Bicycle Helmet—A New Step to Bike Happiness.
Another cool bike safety accessory has come to us through the crowdfunding world. This time it is the Lumos Helmet, adorned with bright LED lights and more. It meets all the modern requirements for helmets, but has some interesting features you may be looking for. It has the sleek road bike look that talks speed and even comes in 3 different colors. More sizes are in the works, yet for now just one adult size is in the catalog.
So beyond the fact that it is a bicycle helmet there is much more to see. It has 50 super bright LED lights that can blink or stay on steady. They are nicely molded into the helmet for a smooth contour and even though you can’t submerge it in water (although you probably could) it is weatherproof enough for most any conditions you will find during your ride. The lithium battery and LED lights should last for many years, so this is one bike product that will stand the test of time.
Other than just blinking lights (actually 3 modes—solid on—slow blink—fast blink), it has turn signals and a braking light you can actuate. The turn signals are run with a small handlebar mounted remote switch device. Two different choices are included with the helmet, one is a dual button that has both left and right buttons together. The other has short wires so you can have one button by each handgrip. The individual buttons setup still uses the all in one unit, and that is the one that blinks when the turn signal are on. This may seem confusing so check the video I shared below.
When the turn signals are on, half of the front lights (normally white) start blinking in yellow. And the side rear lights (normally off) blink in yellow too. In addition to that, there is a light just above your eyes that blinks too, so maybe you will notice they are on, prompting you to turn them back off when your turn is completed. There is a beep when the signals are turned on or off, yet it is quiet while the turn lights are blinking. That same beep can be heard when the main lights are turned on and off.
In the back of the helmet is the main power switch. Next to it is an Apple like charge receptacle. The remote turn switch for the bars has the same port. The helmet even comes with two charge cords (USB) so charging each is quick and easy. Lumos claims about 2 hours to charge (less if the battery isn’t fully flat) and run times of about 3 hours on solid and 6 on blinking mode. This is pretty much what I found in use, so their numbers match well with the real life experience. For most commuters, this relates to charging it once or twice a week.
The Lumos has a brake light mode, yet this skid lid comes with that feature disabled. They are still working the details, and when perfected if can be uploaded to the unit in the field. It is easy to enable the mode, should work fairly well, but will affect the run times heavily. As for now, I have left mine in the off mode until a time it works with nary a hitch.
Being a one-size fits all helmet for now, you may be a bit too big or small for it. It has the foam inserts that can be changed for thicker ones, yet no extras were in the box. It also has the big knob in the back strapping to help adjust it to your head. For me, the fit is just fine and comfortable. They do claim on their site that soon they will be offering different sizes, so if you are concerned that a standard adult size isn’t for you, just hold on and your wishes should be filled soon. I found it just a tad on the heavy side (pretty close to one pound). For most this will be fine, yet the extreme roadies and people who ride with their backs parallel to the ground, it might add some neck strain.
All in all, I like the Lumos helmet. Truth for me is I rarely wear one, so the testing put me a bit out of my normal box. And as long as I am putting my personal thoughts forward, the turn signal thing doesn’t get me all that excited. The chance of folks around you seeing and interpreting the blinking turn signal light seem on the basically slim side to me. When I was a kid they had gimmicky t/s lights for the back of bikes (in fact they still sell them). Cool I guess, yet not my thing. My arms, body and eyes seem to do what I need to get the people around me attention’s for turns and the such.
What I do really like are the super bright blinking lights in general. Anything you can do to catch the attention of the people that can do you harm is very important. I am all for lots of blinking lights, day or night on everyone’s bikes, so more bright ones on your brain bucket are gold. These lights are very bright. They might not be too noticeable on the sunniest of days, yet in most conditions they will be standing out strong.
Now remember, Jose Jimenez (Bill Dana) hopes you won’t call this a crash helmet, something I hope too. Yet it is nice to know that your bike protection gear serves more than one purpose. It should do a lot to keep you on two wheels, yet if the worse happens, it will be there to back you up you too. 80 lumens of light high above the traffic should make you easy to see anytime you mount up on your bike. And that should make riding much more pleasurable.
Go Lumos and go safe, Turbo Bob.
“A few years ago, I bought a old red bicycle with the words Free Spirit written across the side—which is exactly what I felt when I rode it down the street in a tie-dyed dress.”—Drew Barrymore.
You can find Lumos on their website or Facebook page.
Here are a couple videos I shot with the Lumos Helmet.