mirror

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by hod65, Feb 24, 2010.

  1. hod65

    hod65 New Member

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    have being considering getting handle bar mirror think it may be use full for traffic any one out there using them?
     
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  2. cyclingdiary

    cyclingdiary New Member

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    Personally, I do not use a mirror. One reason it can be more of distraction. The key in cycling is to let the driver know you are predictable. So ride in a straight line, use hand signals, and don't do anything unpredictable to drivers. A quick glance over shoulder should do it. Practice this in a parking lot. I guess if you are riding in heavy traffic, a mirror could be useful but personally I think they are useless.

    Cycling Diary
     
  3. randochap

    randochap New Member

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    This guy thinks otherwise. I agree with him. I use bar end mirrors on most of my bikes.
     
  4. 64Paramount

    64Paramount Active Member

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    I always use a handle bar mounted mirror on my bikes. To me a mirror on a bike is just as important as a mirror on a car or motorcycle.

    Edited to add: Hod, I'm sure you're aware of this, but many riders use mirrors that attach to their sunglasses or helmuts, if you would prefer that to a handle bar mirror.

    I've just always prefered a handle bar mounted mirror, I'm not implying that one type of mirror is better than another.
     
  5. nbfman

    nbfman New Member

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    I've tried several types of mirrors that mount on the handle bar and decided I did not like them for general riding. Someone mentioned distraction, and I found it distracting to have to find just the right postion for my head and/or mirror to get the view I was after. It was easier just to just look back as needed. The only time I use a mirror now is when I am riding with my kids and need to frequently check where they are.
     
  6. hod65

    hod65 New Member

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    good point as your head position would change going from hoods to drops etc .the helmit one is worth looking into <no pun intended> if your travelling a bit fast find i cant hear traffic coming from behind me because of wind noise from hellmit i should practice turn head to see not very good at this ....+
     
  7. alienator

    alienator Well-Known Member

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    I think it's hilarious that Heinz Stucke considers mirrors a necessity but doens't always wear a helmet. I guess he's not aware that there are likely helmets out there that would fit him properly and not give him a headache.
     
  8. vspa

    vspa Active Member

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    good hearing is important, with practice and time you will have a 6th sense hearing
    also important is your peripheral vision
    and a quick turn of your head without losing your riding line
     
  9. Billcycle

    Billcycle New Member

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    Very first thing I thought of when I read the linked article....
     
  10. insane

    insane New Member

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    I usually use both a handle-bar end mirror, and glancing over my shoulder when riding on roads. Cos where i live is near an industrial area, where you get lots of trailers and trucks with shipping containers on em.
    The mirror usually helps me keep my riding line, while looking out for vehicles.
    I only glance over my shoulder if it's in my blind spot, or i can't tell the actual size of the vehicle. Although when glancing over my shoulder i tend to lose my riding line, which can be pretty dangerous.
     
  11. dhk2

    dhk2 Active Member

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    I've ridden with the CycleAware helmet mirror for years now, and wouldn't go without it now. I like the assurance that comes from being able to see that the car behind is moving over properly to pass. "Glancing back" can be practiced, but it is very difficult in heavy traffic when hugging the white fog line on roads without shoulders (which are common here in rural areas). Even the simple move over to the left-turn lane in the city is made much easier when you have a clear view of traffic behind.

    Seems the "non-mirror" people I ride with here fall into two camps. One group prides themselves on being able to take a quick glance back over the shoulder (since that's what they learned when they raced), while the other group just feels it's not their responsibility to worry about what's behind them.
     
  12. insane

    insane New Member

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    Sorry to go a little off topic, but that is what youngsters in my area do, they swerve left to right on roads. They feel they have ultimate right of way as cyclists on a road.
     
  13. 64Paramount

    64Paramount Active Member

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    I see that same thing among riders of all ages where I live. It's not uncommon to come up behind 2 or three cyclists riding side by side and none of them have mirrors, or are aware of anything approaching from behind.
     
  14. alienator

    alienator Well-Known Member

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    Being unaware of what's behind is a failure of a lot of cyclists, IMHO. It seems they confuse the right to be on the road with not having to pay attention. Let me rephrase that: situational awareness is a weakness--maybe an extreme weakness--of many people on the road, whether they're cyclists, motorcyclists, or drivers. It seems most folks have a small, maybe very small, sphere of awareness. That begs the question: how do you get people to enlarge their sphere of awareness?
     
  15. gman0482

    gman0482 Member

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    I believe that's one of the main reasons why drivers (or people in general) 'hate' or disapprove of cyclists. They're driving along, and pull up behind a couple of stiffs on bikes just rolling in the middle of the road without any awareness of what's behind them. Some do it cause they're not quick to realize, and some do it cause they think their sh1t don't stink. Either way it's ignorant.
     
  16. dhk2

    dhk2 Active Member

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    Good point about awareness. The majority of people I ride with think it's important to "recognize" drivers approaching from behind. When someone in the group yells "car back", most everyone tries to move over into single file. It makes passing easier, but also acknowledges that we see the vehicle and understand what "share the road" means. It's not really a burden, and just may make the driver more tolerant of us.
     
  17. rschleicher

    rschleicher New Member

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    My daughter got me a small mirror that clips onto the left temple of my sunglasses. It was basically hand-made by some individual, out of some small brass wires, some rubber tubing (in the area that grips onto the sunglasses temple), and a mirror that is maybe 1" by 1.5". The mirror can be tilted on two axes. But it is still "fixed", in that your head has to be in a particular position to see the road behind you. I've gotten used to how I need to move my head a bit to see what's behind me.

    The mirror comes in most handy if I am riding on the right shoulder (or a bike lane), and want to at some point cross the lane of traffic (perhaps to get into an upcoming left-turn lane). I don't rely on the mirror to tell me that it is safe, however. I basically use looks in the mirror to tell me that it MIGHT be clear, and still look over my shoulder before making any actual move. I also look into the mirror periodically to see if other faster cyclists are coming up on me - that way I'll stay a bit "more to the right" as they approach.

    I suppose the mirror looks a bit dorky, but I have plenty of other things to worry about than the dork-factor of my mirror! :D
     
  18. vspa

    vspa Active Member

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    and remember that the injured person will always be you (the cyclist) !!!
    :eek:
     
  19. nbfman

    nbfman New Member

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    That is a good question. For motor vehicle drivers, I think the best way for improved awareness is to have tough standards for obtaining and keeping licenses and enforcing harsh penalties for infractions. People tend to be motivated to drive safely if they know that the potential consequences to themselves are severe.

    For cyclists, I think there is more self-enforced awareness, as most people know that they will by far be the biggest loser in any collision with a motor vehicle. However, there is definitely a growing trend where cyclists appear to have a sense of entitlement and exude arrogance on the road. This deservedly makes them hated by drivers and even pedestrians.

    Refining and enforcing laws related to cycling are probably the only ways to deal with it. This seems to be happening in Japan, as in the last few years I have seen increasing instances of police stopping riders. Also, the laws are developing - like riding while suspending an umbrella became illegal a few years ago. Depending on how bad the problems get, one may even have to resort to requiring licenses......
     
  20. alienator

    alienator Well-Known Member

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    As we drift off topic, I think better enforcement of traffic laws for all users is needed, but that's only part of the solution. Better drivers' education is needed. Cyclists are in an odd spot, we're about the only road users that don't require any licensing or specific training/education to be on the road. Frankly, that shows in a lot of riders, a surprisingly high number of riders.

    Anybody that relies on solely a mirror to check behind them needs to learn to look behind them by turning their heads, both directions. If you can't do it without maintaining a decent line, practice until you can. When turning your head, you don't need to look so long behind you that you can read a license plate. All that matters is seeing something--even if it's an unfocused blob--and getting a quick idea of where that something is in relation to you. Mirrors have to be supplemented with looking as mirrors have a field of view much smaller than that of eyes.
     
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