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  1. #1
    Compulsive Upgrader cyclingshane73's Avatar
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    May 2002
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    Mounting Polar Speed Sensor

    Once again another adventure in very basic bike mechanics.

    I mean how hard is it to mount a simple speed sensor to the fork of your bike right? Well lets just say that my fork (stock carbon blade type) and the Polar sensor did't get along. First off, I previously installed this pain in the arse but never really liked how it looked. Even though I used the kit parts that came with everything, it just looked bad. The zip ties they give you are cheap and brittle and they give you these rubber gasket stick on things that if you stick em on, they make a mess of your fork if you want to move the gasket around.

    My adventure begins with attempting to tidy up my little mess which eventually ended up taking me over an hour until I think I finally have it mounted so that it functions and looks decent at the same time. The manual says to mount the sensor a max. of 50cm (or 1'8") from the h/r monitor. The closer the better. Well alright then. It also says to mount it to the right side of the fork. Sure. The manual also says the sensor can be canted up to 60 degrees using the bike as your straight line to draw your angle from. However, as you can probably tell from this post I'm a little particular (my wife says I'm anal but we'll leave her out of this.) about how a finished job or project looks. This silly little abomination was no different.

    That said, when installed on my fork in the manner suggested by the manual the sensor is canted at this ridiculous looking angle which I don't like. It just makes me think of a big stick getting held close to my front spokes. Not to mention that because the fork is as flat as a pancake the crappy zip ties that kit includes snapped whenever I tried to tighten them down dammit! So the set up was not a secure as I would like it to be. They gave me about 10 ties. I broke them all and ended up using these small white nylon ties I have. They aren't as thick, but they are more flexable and a little stronger. I also went through about a dozen of these until I got everything just the way I wanted it to be. This just because I'd mount the damn thing and then decide I didn't like how I'd done it. Yep very anal... ahem, I mean particular.

    So I decided to mount the sensor upside down so it would tuck in nice and close to the wheel. First mistake. The dirty little bugger don't communicate so well when it is upside down! I solved this problem by moving the sensor over to the left blade still keeping it on the inside. This way it is right side up and still on the inside. Great! Except for two things. Remember that silly rubber stickon gasket. I peeled it off and it left a nice patch of sticky paper on the blade. Grrrr.... No problem, I've got a better idea. Find an old MTB inner tube. Cut a 1 inch section and slide it onto the fork blade. It fits tight, won't move and protects the entire fork leg from the ties. Well now for some funky reason it don't work so well there. I'm guessing the signal doesn't like to go through the wheel and tire instead of past it. So now I end up moving the watch mount to the left side of bar. This time though, because I didn't snug up the zip ties, (I finally got smart) I tucked the sensor about an inch or so under the brakes (the closer the better eh?). A total of 34 cm's away from the h/r monitor shaving a precious 10cm off the previous distance. Exciting I know. But it works! Victory at last.

    I'm sure a Polar rep might have something to say about my alternate set up, however right now its not moving. Maybe because you can't see flashy logo on the side of the sensor. Not to mention I figure this slightly amusing story is also another opprotunity for the board members to laugh at my expense.

    Anyways, Peace.
    "No drug, not even alcohol, causes the fundamental ills of society. If we're looking for the source of our troubles, we shouldn't test people for drugs. We should test them for stupidity, ignorance, greed, and love of power." -P.J. O'Rourke

  2. #2
    Senior Member Bluechip's Avatar
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    I can't say I even read the install directions but everything works fine. I don't really mind the way it sticks out on the right side but I might try your way. I like your idea of the inner tube instead of the supplied sticky thing though. Just wait until you decide to install the cadence sensor. Talk about ugly. On my 5900 it has to go on the down tube because I could not get it to fit snugly on the seat tube. The lugs flare out too much.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    I mounted mine on the rear wheel - I think it looks better back there - don't notice it as much.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    Oh - the other advantage of mounting it on the rear wheel is you can use it on your trainer.

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