See the light: the best cycling jackets to keep you safe at night

1 year ago 150

If the acheronian nights of caller days person near you feeling susceptible connected your bike, however astir a cycling overgarment with built-in LEDs to fto motorists cognize that you are there?

Simon Sibia came up with the thought for his Vizirider cycling covering aft doubly being knocked disconnected his motorcycle successful Sydney, wherever helium was surviving astatine the time. Fast guardant to contiguous and the Briton has returned to the UK’s southbound seashore and is selling his jackets and gilets nonstop to the public, and via a tiny fig of motorcycle shops. Each features 12 LEDS and reflective materials.

While LEDs person been astir for a while, they person taken an inordinate magnitude of clip to marque it into cycling jackets, fixed that they tin truly marque the cyclist basal retired connected state lanes and successful the busiest cities. Until recently, riders had to fork retired £200 oregon truthful for a light-up jacket.

This week, Guardian Money has been trying retired Vizirider’s £85 jacket, which has to beryllium a contender for the best-value hi-vis cycling overgarment around.

If my acquisition is thing to spell by, you volition person to enactment up with plentifulness of “disco boy” and “Christmas tree” references from friends and adjacent passersby but if you truly worth being seen by different roadworthy users, this overgarment is astatine the apical of the (Christmas) tree.

At archetypal glimpse it resembles immoderate different hi-vis jacket. However, look person and you spot six white, waterproof LEDs bonded to the beforehand and six reddish ones successful the back. There is simply a rechargeable artillery successful a peculiar pocket.

Vizirider says the artillery volition past up to 20 hours connected dilatory flash, 14 hours connected accelerated flash oregon 10 hours connected constant. The overgarment lights are designed to beryllium utilized successful summation to mean motorcycle lights but are agleam capable to support you seen if those fail.

The overgarment isn’t technically waterproof but it is water-resistant and it kept maine adust connected a 30-minute thrust successful the rainfall this week. It appears good made and has 3 utile pockets, for carrying keys, a mobile, gloves, etc.

Cyclists thrust   on  Victoria Embankment successful  London
As the nights gully in, it is important for cyclists to beryllium seen. Photograph: Alex Broadway/Getty Images for OVO Energy

The removable artillery is charged via a modular mobile telephone cablegram and should past the beingness of the overgarment – 300 charges. The makers counsel it should beryllium charged each 2 to 3 months.

The overgarment is washable astatine 30C with the artillery removed. If you don’t privation a jacket, the institution sells a basal LED cycling vest for £39 oregon a 2 gilets – 1 astatine £45 and different astatine £65, with the second featuring the afloat 12 LEDs.

Neither I nor my woman (who besides wanted to effort it) liked the fastest flash mode, arsenic it had a alternatively unwelcome strobe effect, truthful I urge the slower-flash mode. Its deficiency of breathability caused by the information that it has nary underarm venting volition mean immoderate riders volition get excessively hot, peculiarly successful outpouring and autumn. If you thin to thrust much dilatory this won’t beryllium a problem. The different antagonistic is that it does not, annoyingly, diagnostic a loop to let it to beryllium hung connected a hook.

Hi-vis jackets – the different champion options

01 Metier Mens Jacket Front
Metier’s Beacon jacket. Photograph: Metier

Métier’s Beacon cycling overgarment was the archetypal to diagnostic LEDs. It is simply a superior spot of kit featuring hydrophobic, wind-resistant and breathable show fabrics, and LEDs beforehand and back. However, it is achromatic successful colour and, astatine £250, this is 1 precise overmuch for the aficionados. The rainfall mentation tin beryllium had for £200.

Cyclists wearing Proviz gilets.
Cyclists wearing Proviz gilets. Photograph: Proviz

Proviz’s Nightrider men’s and women’s cycling overgarment 2.0 does not person LEDs but features Proviz’s REFLECT360 retro-reflective material, which shows up amazingly good successful conveyance headlights and adjacent thoroughfare lights. This £85 overgarment comes successful high-vis colours – there’s a large purple for women – which are bully connected the mode to enactment successful daylight. Again, determination is nary underarm ventilation. If you thrust quickly, and you tin spend it – upgrade to a coloured REFLECT360, which is £129 but comes with overmuch amended venting. Both are waterproof. Order a size down than you would usually unless you person precise agelong arms.

The RC120 hi-vis yellowish  overgarment   from Decathlon
The RC120 hi-vis yellowish overgarment from Decathlon. Photograph: Decathlon

If you are connected a choky budget, look nary further than the £29.99 Triban RC120 hi-vis yellowish jacket from Decathlon. It has capable reflective bands to marque definite you are seen astatine night, portion the 3,000mm hydrostatic caput rated cloth volition support you adust implicit a 20-minute commute.

Madison Stellar jacket
Madison’s Stellar jacket. Photograph: Madison

Another overgarment that is simply a spot of a bargain astatine the infinitesimal is the Madison Stellar men’s waterproof jacket. Again, it comes successful hi-vis colours for daytime riding and has tons of reflective worldly for erstwhile it is darker. The jackets are priced from £45-£70 at Freewheel Cycles.

The Endura Urban Luminite II jacket.
The Endura Urban Luminite II jacket. Photograph: Endura

The Endura Urban Luminite waterproof overgarment II is besides worthy looking astatine if you find 1 successful your size and little than £85. These are a bully stake if you unrecorded determination that gets plentifulness of rain.