Crowdfunding has absolutely changed product innovation as we know it. Inventors and designers no longer need to find brands who share their vision, big time investors or proposition scary suits on the Shark Tank or Dragons' Den TV shows to make their dream a reality.
The trouble is, anybody can create a crowdfunding campaign, but not everyone will (or should) succeed. With this in mind, we’ve decided to regularly round up the hottest and ‘not-est’ campaigns seeking your help. We’ll also be sure to provide updates about where successful campaigns are at in delivering their concepts to rideable product.
Brim Brothers Zone DPMX cleat-based power meter
After nearly six-years in development Brim Brothers has finally launched its cleat-based Zone DPMX Power Meter on Kickstarter, which reached its funding goal in an unprecedented nine hours. As it stands at the time of writing the campaign has raised €170,237, and is still climbing.
The Zone DPMX consists of a force sensor that replaces the three- to four-hole cleat adaptor plate in Speedplay cleats, and a pod that sits on the top of the shoe, which determines cadence and sends the information to a paired ANT+ device. For initial release, the DPMX units are limited to Speeplay Zero pedals, with other versions of the Zeros still to be tested for accuracy.
The waterproof self-contained units are claimed to offer plus or minus 2% power accuracy, weigh 44g per shoe and are powered by a rechargeable lithium ion battery for up to 15 hours runtime.
Available in left foot only and dual versions, the DPMX power meters are set to be some of the cheapest power meters on the market.
For more information, check our recent detailed coverage of the Brim Brothers’ Zone DPMX.
TrackStand by OD Designs
Race day can be a stressful time and there’s nothing worse than seeing your ride toppling over after you’ve spent the entire previous night tuning and perfecting it.
Designed in conjunction with Specalized Factory Racing mechanic Sandy Gilchrist, the TrackStand is a compact foldable stand made from 6063-T6 alloy that secures the bike by the chain and seat stays with height adjustable nylon hooks.
There are lots of stands out there, both A-frame and wheel stand style, but neither are compact or lightweight. While there are also similar models to the TrackStand available, they tend to be prone to toppling on uneven surfaces.
The advantage to this stand is that it holds the rear wheel off the ground allowing work to be done on the drivetrain. The stands can also be joined together for storing or displaying a number of bikes.
According to OD Designs, the TrackStand weighs in at 720g and can support the weight of a 16 kg downhill mountain bike.
With just under two weeks to go, the TrackStand has raised well over £4,000, but still has a fair way to go to reach its £25,000 goal
For more info check out the TrackStand Kickstarter campaign.
Faraday Bikes Cortland
You have probably seen Faraday's original Kickstarter the Porteur, a fantastic looking e-utility bike. The reaction to the fully equipped and well thought out e-bike was outstanding and the Porteur raised nearly double its funding goal.
The crew at Faraday are back, this time with a hilarious video presenting a new stepthrough design called the Cortland and a few new accessories.
The Cortland shares design cues with its predecessor and 250W motor, a more efficient 290-watt-hour battery for up to 25-miles of assisted riding, front and rear built in LED lights, Shimano Alfine internally geared hub and Gates carbon belt drive, swappable rack mounts including a child seat and Tektro hydraulic disc brakes. There’s also a more affordable Cortland S model, which features a traditional chain-driven Shimano Altus eight-speed drivetrain and Avid BB5 mechanical disc brakes.
In addition to the stepthrough frame design, Faraday bikes is also releasing an auxiliary battery pack that doubles bikes' assisted range, and a GPS tracking device and accompanying app to help locate your bike in case of theft. The app also allows for the assist level to be tailored, toggling the lights on or off, ride tracking and route planning among other things.
The Cortland has already exceeded its funding goal with just under two weeks to go in their campaign. For more info check out the Kickstarter page
The World's Brightest Cycling Jacket by Noor America
With advances in technology we’re beginning to see clothing and electronics merge. We have already seen a few light-up shirts, jackets and backpacks, but the Noor jacket takes illuminated clothing to the next level with turn signals (controlled by a handlebar mounted wireless remote) and the ability to charge your phone.
Though we like where the designers heads are at with full 360-degree visibility, honestly, in its current form the jacket isn’t something we would wear.
The Power Ranger meets Lost in Space styling of the Noor Light Up jacket is a bit dorky for our taste and with ‘up to 250 LED’s’ we can imagine it’s not too breathable.
We wish Noor would have taken some design cues from POC and its prototype Lightflex vest.
If it floats your boat, however, check out the Noor’s Kickstarter campaign
Rear View Mirror cycle gloves
Cycling rear view mirrors are not a new innovation, and for many prove invaluable for seeing what’s approaching from behind. We’ve seen them mounted on helmets and handlebars and now, thanks to crowdfunding, gloves.
While info on this project is sparse, the idea came about after the creator's son was nearly knocked off his bike by a car he didn’t know was in his blind spot. Wanting to not only help his son but also cyclists around the world, the Rearview Gloves were born.
We’re sure this is the first cycling mirror that fits like a glove, and again we like where this designer's head is at trying to keep his son and others on the road safe, but for us his execution is just a bit off – for starters mirrors don't breathe too well, nor are they best suited to covering your knuckles in case of impact.
For more info on the Rear View Cycle Gloves check out the Indiegogo campaign page
After months of prototyping, the Cycliq Fly12 light/camera is set to ship in April, with CEO Andrew Hagen telling BikeRadar the team have been busy with final preparations for the unit's release. We’ve been putting the prototype unit through it’s paces over the past few months – keep an eye out for a full review once we’ve received the production version.
Limits power meter
The Limits power meter launched last year on Indiegogo and raised 244% of its funding goal. One of the smallest, cheapest and most universally adaptable power meters, the 47g left-based power meter works by threading in between a standard 9/16in pedal and crank.
After slight delays, because of difficulties in precisely bonding strain gauges into the units, the team at Limits is projecting fulfilment in late February/early March 2016. We’re certainly eager to keep up you to date on this one.
In the meantime, see the video below of exactly how this pedal-thread power meter claims to be compatible with hex-install type pedals. It answers one of our biggest burning questions of the product.
Think everyone should know about a certain product you’ve put your money behind? Let us know in the comments below.