The plethora of cycling accessories on the market fail to address an overarching combination of issues cyclists face. In response BrightLoc developed a tough-as-nails U-lock, constructed with hardened steel and a keyed double deadbolt for maximum security designed to promote cyclist safety and combat property theft. We combined this with an advanced 360-degree lighting system of LED modules able to attach and detach from the lock to create the ultimate cycling accessory. The BrightLoc system provides theft protection along with a visual appearance much larger than what motorists are used to seeing on the road.
It's no secret that cycling has many benefits to a community, but rider entry can be challenging. To put it plainly, many people are afraid to be on the road with motorists, and for good reason. On average, 2 cyclists die every day from bicycle related accidents. Along with rider safety, bicycle and accessory theft is a major issue for users. In the U.S, a bike is stolen every 2.5 minutes and nearly $1 billion of cycling related accessories are stolen every year.
BrightLoc and Trig worked together to identify the unmet needs in the cycling community, including increased rider safety, bicycle security, minimized accessories, and overall promotion of cycling as a healthy lifestyle. BrightLoc provides unique solutions to these issues through its innovative combination of lock and light systems, which improves street safety, helps riders feel more secure on the road, and provides a greater sense of bike and accessory theft protection. The classic U-lock construction provides maximum theft protection while its coating protects the bicycle’s finish. Elegantly designed detachable light modules allow for multiple use cases including being left on the bicycle without concern for theft or being taken as a personal lighting accessory.
BrightLoc went from university project to Kickstarter campaign through the assistance of Trig’s design for manufacture (DFM) and brand identity services. Trig was approached with this exciting concept that won grant funding from multiple startup competitions and a community that was very excited about the idea and eager to see it come to life. Trig worked closely with the BrightLoc team to develop new sketches for a product more focused on design for manufacture as well as device modularity. We then continued with Trig’s Explore-Prototype-Build process to develop CAD, photorealistic renders for marketing, and a working prototype on our way to production.
While our big-picture challenge was to bring the concept to fruition in terms of a manufactured product, more specific challenges were numerous: How do we make a system of many separable parts look unified in multiple configurations? How do we make the process of going from lock to light to charging as hassle-free as possible? How do we make the system an integral part of the bike while not overwhelming the aesthetics or usability of the bike itself? How do we ensure prevention of improper or reverse attachment of the light modules? This was all accomplished through constant team communication as well as multiple rounds of pragmatic prototyping of these necessary product features.
BrightLoc is a culmination of unique safety and lighting design solutions for cyclists. Through Trig’s concept development process we built upon the founding idea of combining a high strength U-lock with front and rear lights by incorporating modularity into the lighting modules. This feature allows the rider to use the product in multiple scenarios. For example, after removing the lock/lights from its mount points, the user can keep the lights attached to the lock itself when securing their bike, or choose to take the lights with them for safe keeping, lighting the way on a walk or to recharge them with a simple micro USB.
Creating a product that incorporates multiple removable accessories presented the challenge of designing BrighLoc to be effective and appealing in any situation. This meant designing a form that appeared “whole” when the lights were attached or when removed, such as for carrying or charging. This challenge was addressed through the design of complementary interlocking accessories that securely slide together, thus maintaining an aesthetic & symmetrical design while not detracting from the visuals of the bicycle itself. On top of brand identity development, we also created storyboards to better understand the consumer use-case to help solve the afromentioned challenges. Our team then designed a website for the announcement of the Kickstarter launch.
BrightLoc doesn’t require the purchase of multiple separate products to achieve the lighting and locking necessary for cyclists to protect themselves and their bicycles. The final product also reduces the space requirements and clutter of those individual accessories. Mounting of existing U-Locks takes up considerable space within the bike frame but because BrightLoc mounts on the handlebar and seat post, this space is left free. The removable lights contain wide set front and rear lights that wrap the sides to provide 360-degree visibility and an appearance to motorists much larger than what other products provide - a feature we feel should be standard across the industry. Statistics show that low visibility leads to accidents between cyclists and vehicles, especially in areas where city infrastructure does not accommodate cycling. Side and rear collisions are the most common, which is why the side-wrapping lights featured on BrightLoc are a vital component for making cyclists easy to spot by passing motorists. Any product that encourages the use of bicycles over standard motor vehicles is an improvement to both the environment and society, and BrightLoc makes the transition easier, safer, and more convenient than ever before.