When I first heard about some bike gloves that have built-in turn signals, my first thought was, “Zackees? More like Whackies! Who would want something so silly?”
Well, apparently about 800 people do with plenty more showing interest. On their popular Kickstarter campaign, Zackees raised more than double their original goal of $35,000!
Check out the Kickstarter video below to see the Zackees turn signal gloves in action and hear from Zackees founder himself, Zach Vorhies on how the whole idea came to be – from fashion statement to cycling safety wear.
The gloves themselves are made from “High Quality Textiles” to compete against top glove makers. Zackees have a comfortable leather palms, an absorbent towel around the thumb, retro-reflective trim and breathable spandex. The electronics are all contained in a waterproof coating, so you can machine wash these gloves on the delicate cycles, just like normal gloves.
The Zackees run on lithium ion watch batteries and they claim to get 3 to 6 months of daily active use (assuming about four minutes of active blinking a day). The lights themselves are LED units and there is a light sensor that boosts light output during the daytime.
The activation of the signals themselves are quite easy, Zackees use a unique patent-pending, nickel-plated steel contact switch that forgoes the need of a button. According to Zackees, “We spent months making the perfect activation switch between the thumb and index finger. We found that metal rivets are by far the most natural to use and the sound they make is strangely addicting.”
Zackees are the brain child of Zach Vorhies, a former Google Earth & Lucasfilm engineer who teamed up with a robotics specialist and a NY fashion designer to invent a disruptive electronics product that’s preventing traffic accidents and deaths.
Zackees are available in the standard glove for $75 or an ultrabright, rechargeable version for $99.99. Size available are XS, SM, MD, LG, XL and they are currently only available in one color (black with white – other colors (red, blue, pink) were offered to early Kickstarter contributors. The first batch of gloves will begin shipping in May.
To find out more or to pre-order, check out their website: www.zackees.com