Sending The Right Signal

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Wednesday, August 31, 2011 - 10:00am

Bicyclist invents turn signal glove.

Sometimes life takes interesting turns.

It did for a Portland, Oregon man who hopes to signal a change in the way cyclists follow the rules of the road.

In one of the nation's most bicycle friendly cities, it has not always been friendly to those who ride.

Jack O'Neal, a mechanical engineering student at Portland State University, hopes to add the safety of cyclist and that of drivers.

"I was following a biker on the day I thought of the idea he put his arm out to the left, and just a light bulb when off", said O'Neal.

The "You Turn" is a glove that is sprinkled with LED lights to indicate a cyclist's direction.

"It reads the position of your hand in three dimensions and turns on the corresponding lights," he said. "You want to go left, put your arm in the left position, you want to go right, put your arm in the right position," said O'Neal.

National Cycling Champion Mark Gyulafia tested the glove on the indoor track at River City Bikes in Portland.

"I definitely think there's a large part of the population that needs something like this," said Gyulafia.

So far O'Neal has invested $5,000 on his idea.

"I wanted to keep it grass roots, that's why I put it on Kickstarter," said O'Neal.

Twenty percent of the $50,000 he needs to take it to the next level has been pledged to give his signal strength.

O'Neal has a patent pending on his invention and he's now creating several different versions for those cyclist who wear gloves and those who don't.

"I feel like I'll get it to market eventually at some point," said O'Neal.
 

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