TechnologyTell

The Orp Smart Horn is Making Cyclists More Visible and Audible on the Road

Sections: Audio, Gadgets / Other, Transportation

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Who really has it out for bike riders? Nobody, right? Sure. As a car-less, bike-dependent city dwelling young person, let me be the first to tell you that the majority of drivers in my town heed two-wheeled travelers a dangerously lot less than you’d expect. Even lighting attachments or traditional bells provide less-than-sufficient precautions to gain attention of cars or trucks sharing the roads.

But leave it folks in the famously bike-friendly city of Portland, OR, to create a device that gives cyclists more of a fighting chance out there during their commutes. Toren Orzeck, industrial designer leads the Orp team and is currently working on a handlebar attachment with solutions to make bikers more well seen and heard by drivers.

The cute, weatherproof Orp features a dual-tone high decibel horn and a brightly illuminated, front beacon LED headlight in one package. The Orp is rechargeable via a mini-USB port hidden within it’s tiny frame; packing a huge punch for such a small unit.

It’s ‘Wail Tail’ is a trigger that activates three sound settings: off or no sound, obviously; it’s ‘friendly sound’ which is something akin to an electronic alarm clock preset at 76 decibels; and it’s ‘loud sound,’ alerting passerbys with an piercing 96 decibel alert sound — definitely creating a clamorous presence to help keep you safe from others. (Because as all bikers know, it’s not about how you ride so much as it is about how others drive.)

The pair of high-powered LED beacon lights on the face of the Orp can be switched off and on as a slow strobe, a fast strobe or to remain constantly on. They put out 87 lumen brightness; even in pitch darkness, others using the roadways will spot you on your two wheels.

The Orp is set to be made available in various colors: Asphalt Black, Frostbyte White, Safety Cone Orange, Wail Blue, Snot Green and Worm White.

Orp is on Kickstarter and as of today, with 20 days left to go. They have almost 900 backers and are at nearly half of the needed amount to put Orp into production. For $45, you can pre-order yours and in my opinion, it is worth the price, tenfold.

That dreaded ‘right hook.’ I’ve been victim to it and the majority of ‘bike people’ that I know have as well. Please support this cause to put an end to those afflicted by this traumatic event. Luckily for me, it only resulted in a ruined bike frame, some bruising and the wits being scared the hell out of my trembling body; also a missed day of work. I consider myself lucky.

With a gadget so practical like this, I’d love to see this small company succeed.

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