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Old 02-10-09, 12:26 PM   #1
graywolf
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PING!, DING DONG!, or BRINNNG BRINNG!

I am looking for a bell for my old Dunelt.

What do people here like? My use is mostly one the local 2.5mi MUP, it would be nice if it would get through to half the Ipodders and clumps of conversationalists, the other half would not hear an air raid sirin, without scaring the run of the mill walkers half to death.

There seems to be the Japanese PING style, the European DING DONG! style, and the Englist BRINNNG BRINNNG! style. Which do you like best? And which sounds better brass, aluminum, or steel?

I understand that most of the modern ones do not sound as good as the vintage ones, what do you think? Can one get a decent new one? Or a reasonably priced old one?

Or should one go with a horn because modern Americans have no idea what a bell means any more?
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Old 02-10-09, 12:27 PM   #2
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brass. see my avatar. I think it came from either Riv or VO.
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Old 02-10-09, 12:31 PM   #3
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I like the looks of the Japanese "ding" bells from Riv/VO, and have a couple. They look swell, and are fine for quiet, uncrowded lanes, to give a polite, relatively inobtrusive notification. For more urban riding, they really aren't loud enough (or maybe I'm just going deaf..).
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Old 02-10-09, 12:33 PM   #4
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For the MUP, would a bar-mounted taser be more useful?
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Old 02-10-09, 12:35 PM   #5
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Brass, brinnng, brinnng, the older the better! I only have one of those, but I have a few of these, they are the next best thing to the old classics.
http://www.bikeworldusa.com/product_...oducts_id/1145
Makes pedestrians smile and move over, bulb horn makes them freak out and then smile, "On your left" causes them to either freeze or go in circles. YMMV
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Old 02-10-09, 01:04 PM   #6
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I like ding dongs. I'm impressed by the small newer cateyes.
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Old 02-10-09, 01:08 PM   #7
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+1 on all the advise given so far...I've got lots of bells. So far my fav has been a brass one from VO but it really isn't loud enough. The only attention getter I've used that really worked was a 3 horned bulb horn. I'd sound off from a good distance as to not scare the crap outa people. Another pleasant thing I used on my old commuter was a nice little brass bell hanging from my seat rail. It was constant and got most peoples pleasantly curious attention on the MUP.
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Old 02-10-09, 01:09 PM   #8
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there seems to be a different sound from the brass bells. Maybe it rings longer. Does anyone else's bell sometimes ring itself when you go over bumps? I hate that.

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I like ding dongs.




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Old 02-10-09, 01:09 PM   #9
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The best one I've had that gave the best relative results was an older Specialized dinger with a rotating ring allowing me to give either one ding or a series of ding-dings if necessary. Brake lever clacking seems to do as well these days. And when all else fails -- become the ninja and fly past like the wind before they have a chance to out maneuver you.

This is as close as an example as I can find right now:
http://flickr.com/photos/madison_guy/1273694036/

Last edited by treebound; 02-10-09 at 01:15 PM. Reason: grammeritis
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Old 02-10-09, 04:49 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waldowales View Post
Brass, brinnng, brinnng, the older the better! I only have one of those, but I have a few of these, they are the next best thing to the old classics.
http://www.bikeworldusa.com/product_...oducts_id/1145
Makes pedestrians smile and move over, bulb horn makes them freak out and then smile, "On your left" causes them to either freeze or go in circles. YMMV
Yes, I have noticed that, I now say, "Bicycle", and let them figure it out. It gets smiles instead of frowns, but the HIA crowd does not pay any attention hence my asking about bells.
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Old 02-10-09, 05:58 PM   #11
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The brass English BRINNNG BRINNNG is the most refined way to get peds out of the way.
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Old 02-10-09, 06:15 PM   #12
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I like the brriing-brriing sound better. As stated above, it sounds more refined. I use a Bell bell I bought at walmart.
Ernest

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Old 02-10-09, 07:57 PM   #13
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Hello Greywolf,

After half a century of bicycle riding
last spring I bought my first bell, since
I have got a few more, most are brringg
Iv'e been using the Ding Dong for the last
few months. I'm always looking for the better
bell, Best of luck on your quest.

Cheers.
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Old 02-10-09, 08:24 PM   #14
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What about creating one that when you push the lever it says on your left and when you pull it towards you it says on your right. Or you could have one that just says FREEZE, that way they don't move into your way, that is what I notice the most if I notify that I am behind they always seem to move right where I was going to go to avoid them, go figure.
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Old 02-10-09, 10:15 PM   #15
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I saw a bell this weekend that was huge, almost 3" diameter. It made the most pleasant sound. I forgot to ask where it was purchased.
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Old 02-11-09, 07:13 AM   #16
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I love bells. The nicest sound I've ever heard is the one this one makes:



That's the one on my Dawes. This is the one on my Trek:



I ended up buying 10 of them, all old stock, from a seller in Italy. They cost me $10 each and I gave all but 3 of them away to friends. The bell part are lost-wax cast bronze and they sustain for ages. What's nice is that they are really loud if you push the lever once, fast, but you can also just move the lever about 2mm and get a really clear but quiet ping for when you want to be polite.

This is the old Lucas King of the Road on my girlfriend's Vindec:



One sweep of the lever and back and it rings twice... dong-dong... and sounds just like an old fire engine. It huge... about 3" across.
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Old 02-13-09, 05:47 PM   #17
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Well, I picked up a very cheap Brinnng, Brinnng bell locally. It is not very loud, and I think it will be mistaken for a cel-phone ring and ignored most often. Oh well, it was cheap enough that even I can toss it if it dosen't do the job.
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Old 02-13-09, 05:57 PM   #18
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Just picked up a 1930's bakelite bell off e-bay for £00.99p. I wouldn't normally fit a bell but it was just the right era and look for a project I'm slowly working on at present (I promise to post details when there's more to see!) The bell looks really cool, in smooth browny-black coal type finish with art deco style ribs from the outside of the dome to the centre. I've lost the photo on my PC at the moment but will include a good shot when the bike's built. The really neat thing is the vibrant sound it makes - really loud and cheerful. I'm guessing it must have a rotating steel dome under the bakelite cover but I can't work out if it comes apart to have a look inside. Don't want to break it, it would be hard to get another!
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