Rain has been both bane and blessing to humans pretty much ever since humans first existed. Life on Earth depends on water to survive. But that doesn't mean we have to like it when it spatters and mists our eyeglasses, soaks through our clothes, and makes our helmet visors so foggy we can't see properly.

Enter the Indian company Sepal and a universal-fit motorcycle accessory it's devised called the Sepal Shield. And while it does incorporate a tall windscreen as part of its design, it also goes one step further. 

For those familiar with tuk tuk designs, it plops a design that bears a resemblance to the clear front windscreen of a tuk tuk, along with a streamlined roof, down onto the top of the tank of your existing motorcycle.

Gallery: Sepal Shield

There's a base with what appear to be suction cups that you mount on the top of your fuel tank. It uses straps mounted to various points on the bike (both footpegs, as well as another strap that goes around up front) to hold the device steady. 

The windscreen portion is tapered at the bottom, so you can easily reach your hands around it and control the bike. It widens out toward the top to protect you from the elements, as well as potentially from seeing your dash (depending on your height and where your line of sight is). A streamlined roof section is attached to flow out overhead, effectively acting like an awning that stays with you as you roll down the road.

Here's a demonstration of it in action in this video. 

Would It Actually Work?

The video is meant to allay concerns about both the Sepal Shield's sturdiness and its effectiveness against a serious rain. While it's not total sideways torrential stuff, the rain in this video is definitely not a drizzle. The rider arrives to his destination reasonably dry, with the help of a sort of apron fanning out from the base of the Sepal Shield to help keep his legs dry. 

As anyone who's ever ridden in rain can tell you, the tops of your thighs are often like sponges at the least little hint of rain. Whether you have a windscreen or fairing on your bike or not doesn't seem to matter; your thighs are almost always going to get at least a little bit wet. If it's a little bit, it's not so bad, but the more your pants get soaked, the more annoying it is.

That's why Sepal also released its Thigh Flaps (not kidding; that's the product name) as a separate, optional accessory.

Sepal Thigh Flaps

Sepal Thigh Flaps

The intention is clearly good, and it's worth noting that it's also intended for a different market than my own. Language is used differently in different places, so a product name that might sound a bit rude to some English speakers won't necessarily sound that way in some places. I get it. But I still don't know how effective this design would be in practice. 

I also get that it's frequently hot, so the less stuff you have to wear that makes you feel like a baked potato is likely desirable. Rain ponchos and rain gear can be a heavy ask, and an airier, breezier solution like this one might be an easier sell for riders in hot, humid climates.

Get the RideApart Newsletter
Sign Up Today

How well a device like this would work is something that probably depends on two things: Its construction, and where you're planning to ride with it.

Would you want to take it on a highway or other high-speed road? Probably not. The rolling resistance probably wouldn't be fun. Then again, BMW tried it with the C1, so why shouldn't there be a similar device offering universal fitment to multiple bikes?

On the other hand, if you're riding in a dense and congested urban environment, and you're frequently in stop-and-go traffic (either as a delivery or taxi rider, or just as a commuter), it's not difficult to see why this might be appealing in some situations.

While I have yet to experience a serious downpour in India, I have done it in Thailand (although I wasn't riding at the time, just walking). In those situations, people behave how you'd probably expect: Those who don't have to be out in it will stay indoors until it passes. And those who have to be out in it will do what they can to cope. Could riders there use something like this? Maybe, but it all depends on how well it works in the world outside of a short promotional video.

Got a tip for us? Email: tips@rideapart.com