Sombra bike light ‘lampshade’ aims to reduce blinking effect, improve visibility

Sombra bike light ‘lampshade’ aims to reduce blinking effect, improve visibility

sombra

Sombra in action.

Here’s an interesting idea: A sheet of polypropolene that wraps around your rear light to make it more visible and less annoying at the same time.

How are rear bike lights annoying? Did you forget the huge debate and discussion we had back in July after we shared how someone spray-painted “F*** you and your epileptic bike lights.”

Now a London-based product designer hopes to solve that problem with his “Sombra” — a “lampshade” for your tail light. Sombra’s creator, Offer Canfi, was inspired to create the product after being passed by another rider during a nighttime ride in central London. “He had one of those blinking, bright-red taillights, and in the dark it played some nasty tricks on my eyes,” writes Canfi on the Indiegogo crowdfunding site he’s set up to fund the first run of Sombras.

“The light was so intense,” he continued, “that even as the cyclist pushed further away, I kept feeling disoriented. With cars on my right and the sidewalk to my left, I was forced to stop so I would avoid diving head first into the curb. Needless to say I was annoyed, but my annoyance quickly turned to irony when I realized I had the exact same type of taillight, and that I was probably annoying other cyclists too.”

When Canfi went home later that night and turned on his lampshade, the proverbial light bulb went off in his head and the Sombra was born. Now he’s hoping to raise $3,000 to buy enough sheets of polypropolene to make his first batch.

In addition to lowering your light’s annoying factor, the Sombra diffuses the light to make it visible from all directions. It’s made from recyclable material and it attaches to your seat post clamp. Canfi says it will retail for $10.

This seems like a nifty idea. The material and execution reminds me of the Portland Design Works Origami rear fender. What do you think? Check out the campaign site for more info.

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