Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

Advocacy & Safety Cyclists should expect and demand safe accommodation on every public road, just as do all other users. Discuss your bicycle advocacy and safety concerns here.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 08-14-09, 02:20 PM   #1
mushrooshi
Hills scare me.
Thread Starter
 
mushrooshi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Bikes: 2008 Giant FCR3
Posts: 97
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Turning signals on bikes?

I'm not quite bad at soldering and making simple electronics. I could make some car-style turning signal lights on a bike, should I do it or not?
mushrooshi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-09, 02:43 PM   #2
John E
feros ferio
 
John E's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: www.ci.encinitas.ca.us
Bikes: 1959 Capo; 1980 Peugeot PKN-10; 1981 Bianchi; 1988 Schwinn KOM-10;
Posts: 17,299
Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 135 Post(s)
The main issues are visibility under bright daylight conditions and wide enough physical spacing to convey one's intent unambiguously, particularly if used in conjunction with a blinkie or two.
__________________
"Early to bed, early to rise. Work like hell, and advertise." -- George Stahlman
Capo [dschaw'-poe]: 1959 Modell Campagnolo, S/N 40324; 1960 Sieger, S/N 42624
Peugeot: 1970 UO-8, S/N 0010468
Bianchi: 1981 Campione d'Italia, S/N 1.M9914
Schwinn: 1988 Project KOM-10, S/N F804069
John E is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-09, 03:03 PM   #3
San Rensho 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 5,559
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 24 Post(s)
Bad idea. People will leave them on by mistake and cars will cut them off thinking that they are signalling a turn when they intend to go straight.

I learned this very early while riding motorcycles. Leave your left turn signal on by mistake and an approaching car will think you are turning left and left hook you.

It will only work if it has a very loud obnoxious alarm that sounds while the turn signal is on.
__________________
Il faut de l'audace, encore de l'audace, toujours de l'audace

1980 3Rensho-- 1975 Raleigh Sprite 3spd
1990s Raleigh M20 MTB--2007 Windsor Hour (track)
1988 Ducati 750 F1
San Rensho is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-09, 03:23 PM   #4
Laggard
Lance Hater
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Los Angeles
Bikes:
Posts: 4,403
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
I was born with two turn signals.
Laggard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-09, 09:52 PM   #5
BarracksSi
Bike ≠ Car ≠ Ped.
 
BarracksSi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Washington, DC
Bikes: Some bikes. Hell, they're all the same, ain't they?
Posts: 13,858
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My thoughts last year: Why don't I see turn signals on bicycles?

From this thread: http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...59#post7311859

Cliff's notes: I think that if you're in a position where you need a turn signal to be safer, you're dependent on the ability of others to pay attention and decipher what they're seeing. I don't put that kind of trust in people on the street.

Another post I made in a later thread:
Turn Signals?
BarracksSi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-09, 11:44 PM   #6
Chris516
24-Speed Machine
 
Chris516's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Wash. Grove, MD
Bikes: 2003 Specialized Allez 24-Speed Road Bike
Posts: 6,054
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by mushrooshi View Post
I'm not quite bad at soldering and making simple electronics. I could make some car-style turning signal lights on a bike, should I do it or not?
More power to ya!!
Chris516 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-09, 12:28 AM   #7
tadawdy
Faster than yesterday
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Evanston, IL
Bikes:
Posts: 1,510
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
meh, I just stick my arms out and point emphatically to tell others where I'm going
tadawdy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-09, 02:43 AM   #8
CommuterRun
Conservative Hippie
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Wakulla Co. FL
Bikes:
Posts: 4,271
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I just use arm signals.

But something I've been thinking of is replacement trailer lights such as is sold in any autoparts store would work well for this. You'd just have to carry enough battery to run them, which is why I haven't done it. You'd also have to rig up some way to mount them to the bike so they would be far enough apart, but that wouldn't be difficult.

The LED replacement trailer lights would make great taillights.
CommuterRun is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-09, 03:28 AM   #9
turbo2L
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Bikes:
Posts: 202
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
When I was a kid I had a turn signal unit for my bike, so they do exist.
turbo2L is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-09, 09:32 AM   #10
geo8rge
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Bikes:
Posts: 2,012
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Laggard View Post
I was born with two turn signals.
Good point, I always thought bright colored cycling gloves would be good at night.
__________________
2000 Montague CX, I do not recommend it, but still ride it.
Strida 3, I recommend it for rides < 10mi wo steep hills.
2006 Rowbike 720 Sport, I recommend it as an exercise bike.
1996 Birdy, Recommend.
Wieleder CARiBIKE (folding), decent frame.
geo8rge is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-09, 10:43 AM   #11
closetbiker
Senior Member
 
closetbiker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Vancouver, BC
Bikes:
Posts: 9,596
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by BarracksSi View Post
...Cliff's notes: I think that if you're in a position where you need a turn signal to be safer, you're dependent on the ability of others to pay attention and decipher what they're seeing. I don't put that kind of trust in people on the street...
me either. I go when I have enough room to do it.

On rare occasions when traffic is very heavy and very slow, and I want to turn, I get the attention of the driver and make sure he gives me the room I need before I go.

It just kills me when I see someone just stick an arm out and go (they probably think it's a safe thing to do too!)
closetbiker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-09, 12:18 PM   #12
nwmtnbkr
Senior Member
 
nwmtnbkr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Bikes:
Posts: 1,054
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I'm adding front and rear turn signals and a rear brake light. I just ordered affordable, amber strobes with 22 LEDs on each strobe light (yes, they're coming from Hong Kong, but a pair of strobes for under $7.00, with the controller, was far cheaper that what I could find from sellers here). I want something bright enough to be seen in daylight. I've come to the conclusion that most younger drivers have no comprehension of hand signals after a number waved when I was signaling a right turn and they definitely don't understand the hand signal for stop. I think it's time for safety regs to be updated and require turn signals and brake lights, especially on power-assisted bicycles. Let's face it, turn signals and brake lights have been required on cars for such a long period, most drivers on the road today have no reason to know hand signals.
nwmtnbkr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-09, 01:57 PM   #13
SingingSabre 
BF's Level 12 Wizard
 
SingingSabre's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Tucson, AZ
Bikes: Diamondback Sorrento turned Xtracycle commuter
Posts: 1,425
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I think that that turn signals would be largely overlooked, unless they were somehow überbright.

Arms convey the message far better, imho.
__________________
Shameless plug (my sites):
Work
Photography
Vanity
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bklyn
Obviously, the guy's like a 12th level white wizard or something. His mere presence is a danger to mortals.
SingingSabre is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-09, 03:03 PM   #14
rwp
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Reno, NV
Bikes:
Posts: 400
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris516 View Post
More power to ya!!
My sentiments exactly. If you put something together that works well - give us a description with some pics or video.
rwp is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-09, 03:13 PM   #15
bluegoatwoods
Senior Member
 
bluegoatwoods's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Central Illinois
Bikes:
Posts: 686
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The only reason that I've been tempted toward electric turn signals is the inability of drivers to understand the signal for a right turn. (Hard to believe they don't understand, but it seems to be the case)

Maybe I'll try using the hand-up right turn signal with my hand curved over my head, index finger pointing to my right. The stop signal might be used with all fingers spread in an obvious "stop" gesture.

Electric turn signals are still tempting, but I'm afraid that anything that is really up to the job will require quite a battery.
bluegoatwoods is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-09, 05:03 PM   #16
nwmtnbkr
Senior Member
 
nwmtnbkr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Bikes:
Posts: 1,054
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
When drivers don't understand arm signals, they don't mean a thing. Like I said in my previous post, younger drivers who've seen me signaling a right turn have thought I'm waiving. Given how long turn signals and brake lights have been mandated safety equipment on cars, most drivers under 30 don't even understand hand signals. It's cold comfort that we cyclists may know hand signals, but if the operators of larger vehicles don't, their use is irrelevant and dangerous.

New lighting technology enables clear views of turn signals both during the day and at night. I really think it's time that safety regulations require turn signals and brake signals on bicycles. The amber strobe lights I've ordered to use as turn signals have 22 bright LEDs on each strobe and the units are good-sized--4 inches by 2 1/2 inches. They'll be visible in daylight and highly visible at night. The brake light will have 9 super bright LEDs. I already have double bright head lamps and a battery-powered LED tail light. I will be adding spoke lights as well. At dawn, dusk and nighttime, you can't have too many lights.
nwmtnbkr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-09, 05:25 PM   #17
LesterOfPuppets
cowboy, steel horse, etc
 
LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Rock Springs, WY
Bikes: My War
Posts: 27,183
Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 545 Post(s)
I always use my right arm to signal right turn. The standard right turn signal seems like it's designed for use while piloting a left-hand drive automobile.

I used to have a turn signal back on my bike back in the late 70s, thought it was the coolest thing ever. It wasn't really effective, though.'

Perhaps a single LED flashing on the handlebar-mounted control switch (I'm guessing this is what will be used) would be an adequate reminder that you've a signal on.

Chevron indicators like I've seen on some SUV/truck sideview mirrors would be nice, I'd think.
LesterOfPuppets is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-09, 06:59 PM   #18
Kat12
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Metro Detroit
Bikes: Raleigh C-40
Posts: 35
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I was actually going to mention this in my "oh hi I'm a huge n00b" post. So, here's what I would've said:

And why has no one invented turn signals for bikes? I hate arm signals. Not only do I feel they look dumb, but I don't trust most drivers to know what they mean anyway since they're so scarcely used. Half of them will probably think I'm flipping them off (we won't go into the safety implications of that). A blinking turn signal, everyone understands.

I thought of this on my ride today when waiting to turn left into the driveway of our complex; another car was coming and I stopped, just as I would've in my car, but the driver probably wondered for a split second why I was stopping. But what was I to do, stand there with my arm out until she was past? She probably would've thought I wanted a high-five!

If there's little traffic, no problem. If I'm already in the left-turn lane, no problem. Simple right turn, no problem. But what about changing lanes in traffic? Maybe it's not as difficult on a bike as in a car, I dunno, but sometimes my turn signal is the only thing that gets me space to move over in heavy traffic (and sometimes it just signals other drivers to speed up so they don't have to let me in--boy do they get pissed when I nudge in anyway! But that is SO not possible on a bike).
Kat12 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-09, 07:07 PM   #19
mushrooshi
Hills scare me.
Thread Starter
 
mushrooshi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Bikes: 2008 Giant FCR3
Posts: 97
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Motorcycles have turn signals placed on the handlebars; if people can understand motorcycle turn signals, shouldn't they kind of think 'Hey, those lights on the left are blinking, its yellow like a turn signal, and I've seen them on motorcycles. Hes turning left'. Even in America, I'd hope people aren't thinking. "Those flashing decals are tacky"
mushrooshi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-09, 07:40 PM   #20
prathmann
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Bay Area, Calif.
Bikes:
Posts: 6,222
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 148 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by geo8rge View Post
Good point, I always thought bright colored cycling gloves would be good at night.
I took a piece of yellow reflective 3M tape and taped a piece of cloth duct tape to the back, then sewed that to the back of one pair of cycling gloves.
prathmann is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-09, 09:09 AM   #21
turbo2L
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Bikes:
Posts: 202
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Here you go: wireless turn signals w/ iPod charger!

http://craziestgadgets.com/2009/08/1...-ipod-charger/
turbo2L is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-09, 09:34 AM   #22
Dchiefransom
Senior Member
 
Dchiefransom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Newark, CA. San Francisco Bay Area
Bikes:
Posts: 6,205
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by closetbiker View Post
It just kills me when I see someone just stick an arm out and go (they probably think it's a safe thing to do too!)

That seems to be what most do in their cars.
__________________
Silver Eagle Pilot
Dchiefransom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-09, 09:37 AM   #23
Dchiefransom
Senior Member
 
Dchiefransom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Newark, CA. San Francisco Bay Area
Bikes:
Posts: 6,205
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
In California we're allowed to signal a right turn with our right arm. I just point right.

http://www.gloglov.com/index.html
__________________
Silver Eagle Pilot
Dchiefransom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-09, 10:18 AM   #24
Laggard
Lance Hater
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Los Angeles
Bikes:
Posts: 4,403
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
I prefer to signal a right turn by sticking out my right arm. The old fashioned method results in too many people waving back at me.

By the way, as a kid in the 70s I can recall electric turn signals being sold for bikes.
Laggard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-09, 12:41 PM   #25
bbattle
.
 
bbattle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Rocket City, No'ala
Bikes: 2014 Trek Domane 5.2, 1985 Pinarello Trevisio, 1991 Colnago Master, '06 Bianchi San Jose, 1987 Moulton Fuso, 1990 Gardin Shred, '82 John Howard(Dave Tesch)
Posts: 12,568
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by linkon654 View Post
I think that if you're in a position where you need a turn signal to be safer, you're dependent on the ability of others to pay attention and decipher what they're seeing. I don't put that kind of trust in people on the street.

Ashley Madison
Why am I reminded of the Simpsons episode where all the lonely men are on a party line and Apu says "I don't think there are any women on this line."
bbattle is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:19 PM.