There’s a tendency to think that mounting more flashing lights on your bike will increase your night-time visibility. But a series of lights all flashing at different frequencies and out of phase can be confusing for a driver as they approach you on a dark night.
So Colorado-based Thomas Prehn, 1986 US pro champion and bike industry consultant has launched a funding campaign on Kickstarter to raise $20,000 to produce a set of bike lights that flash in sync. He’s patented the synchronised lighting concept and is now hoping to fund its development and the application for approval for the wireless protocol.
Prehn likens the 4Sync lights to the lighting on radio masts or other tall towers, which all flash with the same timing and frequency to make it easier for pilots to identify how far away they are and how quickly they are approaching them. There’s a video of Prehn explaining the concept and the lights in action here.
Up to four lights can be interconnected wirelessly so that changing the lighting mode on one light changes the other lights to the same mode. Switching one light off also switches off all the rest. Prehn claims 40 lumen output for the front light with a run time of one hour in constant mode, and 20 lumens and one hour run time for the rear light units. Put the lights into pulsed mode and run time increases to 16 hours.
Watch: bike light buyer’s guide
The lights themselves are small USB rechargeable LED units and incorporate a rubber strap mounting system to attach them to the bike, a pack or clothing. A pledge of $140 will get you a set of three rear red lights and a white front light, with delivery estimated for December 2016. There are other offers for different funding levels.
Funding for the 4Sync lightset closes on Saturday, 15 October.