Revolights: The Future of Bicycle Lights?

Revolights revolutionized bicycle lighting when it tossed aside the conventional single lamp and designed a system of LEDs that mount right onto the wheels. The result is one of the smartest inventions to hit the cycling industry in years—and it has the potential to drastically improve the safety of cyclists around the world.

But is the function and design practical enough to have a lasting impact on cyclists of all types? Let's take a look at the good and bad to see if this creative new design is right for you.

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How It Works

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Two plastic arcs attach to each side of a bicycle rim. Each plastic arc contains 12 LED lights and is connected to a battery that connects around the hub. A magnet that attaches to the frame of the bicycle operates a timing mechanism that keeps the lights illuminated on the front portion of the wheel only (and the reverse on the rear wheel). This creates an arc of light from the wheel that shines on the road to the front and rear while also increasing side visibility, designed to prevent one of the more common causes of car-bicycle related accidents.

The Good

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1. The amount of light these 24 LED's create on each wheel was much brighter than expected. Because the light source is so close to the road, the lumens of the LED's don't need to be as bright to create a sufficient amount of light to see the road in front of you, which cuts cost considerably. Compared to the Lupine Betty R 9, which costs $1,095, these lights are a steal at $200.

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2. The side visibility is second to none. It's nearly impossible for a car not to see you when these are attached to your wheels. There is a true 360 degrees of visibility that provides a level of safety that other lights can't match.

3. The Tron effect of the light arcs looks pretty cool.

4. If you're cramped for training time, especially during the winter when daylight is shortened, these lights will allow you to train safely for longer amounts of time.

5. The customer service for setup and the videos on the Revolights website that are to be used as a guide are detailed, easy to follow and well made.

6. Once the lights are on, they are really fun. Not only do they attract attention from motorists (which is a good thing), they change the cycling experience. I've had zero close calls using these lights for over a month riding at night, which gave me a feeling of safety that I hadn't felt before when riding in the dark.

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