Saturday, 7 September 2013

CyFy WristView mirror review **

I got my hands on the CyFy WristView mirror for cyclists via Amazon's US site.
 
The wrist-mounted, rear-view mirror for cyclists is a crowd-funded project. The designers used Kickstarter to get their business off the ground and took on board some of the suggestions they received from backers. For instance there is space on the wrist band on which you can use a marker pen to add emergency contact details, allowing the product to double as an ID bracelet. 
 
The triangular pack, ready to unfold
The CyFy WristView mirror arrives in a clever, origami-style box. Open it up and nestling in there is a little round mirror, sitting snugly on a tightly-coiled 'snap band'. Nothing else. The mirror is durable enough to survive the journey without additional packaging material and it's so simple that an instruction leaflet would be very brief indeed: Wear on wrist. Look in mirror.  
 
The snap-band bracelet means that it's a fit-all product. It also makes it quick and fuss-free to wear. You just snap and ride. The only adjustment needed is to twist it round a bit so that the mirror is pretty much in line with your thumb, to provide best rear view. I have tried it on my right wrist and on my left, as shown on the packaging illustration. Both seem to work equally well but for me, it is more comfortable to wear on the right simply because my watch is on the left. 

To view the mirror, you need to lift your hand and bend your elbow until your thumb is at head-level.  The time I most need to see what is behind is when I want to pull out to the right. It seems to make more sense to wear the mirror on that side so that the extended arm movement needed to check the mirror, doesn't suggest to following traffic that I am about to turn left.  
 
Getting maximum safety out of the product, the snap-band is made out of high-visibility, super-reflective material. The makers claim that it makes me 200 times more visible as I wobble along the road in low-light conditions, adding ominously, that I will be visible at 400 feet. Great for life expectancy but in all honesty, I'm not sure I want to be that easy to pick out in a crowd. The band wipes clean after a muddy ride and springs straight back into that neat little coil which fits handily into my rack bag. 
 
The mirror is circular, about two inches in diameter (radius? circumference? Gosh those maths lessons seem so long ago...the crossways measurement. Nothing to do with p. Come to think of it, my whole life has been nothing to do with p, despite what those despairing teachers would have had me believe).  
 
I digress.
 
The mirror is set in a plastic casing and it's the casing that is fixed to the band by dint of what looks like a pretty sturdy rivet. I've not had it long enough to give it an extended test and I was initially a bit worried because the natural - though incorrect - motion is to detach the snap-band by pulling the mirror. So far, my mirror is not budging.
This picture gives an idea of the product size
 
When riding with the mirror, it's been comfortable and hasn't got in the way when I've needed to change gear or brake. As it is so light, I pretty much forget I am wearing it.
 
This isn't a mirror into which you glance while riding naturally. To get a good view you have got to make that salute movement. 

In fairness, following traffic will almost certainly have their attention grabbed by your peculiar arm motion. While they think back to their cycling proficiency days in an attempt to recall what on earth that hand signal means, you have a little more time to pull round the pothole.
 
The makers emphasise that the mirror isn't a replacement for turning your head to see for yourself exactly what is bearing down on you. It certainly isn't. No mirror is going to remove the need for that shoulder check. It is, though, a valuable aid. It's a bit like having a passenger in the car, giving you a heads-up when it is clear to pull out. You still look before you leap but you've had help avoiding the obviously unsafe times to manoeuvre.


Advantages of the CyFy WristView Mirror
* It is easy to put on and remove. No tools required.
* It is small and easy to carry.
* The snap-band doubles as a high-viz reflector.
* You can use it to apply make-up on arrival if you are so inclined.

Disadvantages of the CyFy WristView Mirror
* It is currently quite difficult to get hold of one in the UK
* You need to take your hand off the handlebar whenever you want to check the mirror.
* It doesn't come with a draw-string bag of the kind you sometimes get with sunglasses. That would be really useful to prevent the mirror getting scratched when it is in your bag. I'm currently carrying the box in my rack bag but it is taking-up more space than it needs.

The CyFy WristView Mirror 
 
 
 
 

2 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. I don't know, John. However if you are choosing a wearable mirror I would DEFINITELY opt for the RearViz one. You can see my review of that here: http://theresherides.blogspot.com/2013/10/the-rearviz-armband-mirror-for-cyclists.html Since I had my RearViz mirror I haven't touched the CyFy one. Unfortunately RearViz is also an import and because of that, even more expensive. RearViz have been seeking UK distributors and were at the London Cycle Show earlier this month.

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