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  1. #1
    I need more cowbell. Digital Gee's Avatar
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    Rear View Mirrors: What's your experience?

    I must be a slow learner. I've been trying to perfect the technique of glancing over my left shoulder for on-coming traffic without drifting left, and I'm getting better, but I'm not as good as I'd like to be. So I'm thinking, maybe I should get a rear view mirror.

    I know there are at least two types: handlebar and helmet (or sunglass frame-mounted). That's the full extent of my knowledge. Pretty impressive, huh.

    Anyway, anyone with an opinion one way or d'other? Do they work? If so, what kind is best?
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  2. #2
    Berry Pie..the Holy Grail GrannyGear's Avatar
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    Gee,
    My experience with handlebar mounted mirrors is that my hand catches on them and I have to move my upper body to get a good range of rear vision--and, for me, they vibrated and so blurred the image. My helmet mount vibrated as well and my usual careless way with my helmet meant it was often knocked askew. For some years I've used a sunglass mounted. Less vibration, to range my field of vision I merely turn my head a little bit. People seem to use all three...sunglass mounts are my preference.

    P.S....like getting used to bifocals, having the mirror in your normal field of vision and tilting the head a bit for (1)far behind you or (2) right beside you becomes second nature after a few rides.

  3. #3
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    Gee,
    I have a 'Cat Eye' bar end mirror and won't leave home without it . I do have
    to move my left thigh a bit but it is now second nature. Mine did vibrate a bit but
    the mirror was loose in the housing which super-glue fixed. I used clothes pins as clamps
    at three points on the mirror and put drops of glue beside them, welding the mirror to the
    housing. No more vibration.

    I have not tried any other types of mirrors.

    LastPlace

  4. #4
    HomeBrew Master! Gus Riley's Avatar
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    I'd feel naked in public without my glasses mounted mirror. I don't leave home without it.
    2012 TransAm Tour journal link: http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/Threeisacharm

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  5. #5
    Curmudgeon Wil Davis's Avatar
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    I have a bar-end mirror on the bike, but also have a helmet mounted mirror - I use both. The helmet-mounted mirror doesn't give me the wide field of the mirror on the bars, but it is useful in that I can scan around with it just by turning my head - very useful for the cursory look. If I'm about to execute a turn, or change direction, I'll take a quick glance over the shoulder just to make sure. I don't rely on the mirrors entirely, but I've found that I've got so used to them, that I'd feel naked without them.

    - Wil

  6. #6
    Avatar out of order. MarkS's Avatar
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    If you take a regular auto driver's training course, they tell you to keep checking your mirror, as often as every 3 seconds depending on circumstances. If this is true of autos, how much more for bikers? Turning your head every few seconds would get real tiring.

    I tried the "3rd Eye" mirrors. They were OK but a bit flimsy with a small field of vision.

    The "take-a-look" mirror works much better, though you will probably eventually need to glue the plastic insert onto your helmet. I saw it locally at R.E.I. It can also be ordered from crateworks. Its also handy if you want to know who's behind you in the checkout lane. Once you get used to a mirror, you won't want to leave home without it.

  7. #7
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    I've used a Rhode Gear mirror that Velcros to the brake hoods and a glasses-mount one I got from Rivendell. The glasses-mount one takes some getting used to--it's just a couple of inches from your face and you can't see it with both eyes--and it's the geekiest-looking cycling accessory there is. As I get used to it, though, I'm liking it more and more. Can't remember the brand, but it's mounted on a recycled spoke bent to hook on the left temple piece of your glasses. Either one works fine, and they give me piece of mind in traffic. I don't always remember them, but when I do, I'm surprised at how much more confident I feel.
    I've also tried bar-end mount mirrors and one that snaps to the top tube between your legs. I gave up the bar-ender because I switched to barcon shifters, and the other one was useless--all I could see was my package.

  8. #8
    Embrace the weirdness. primaryreality's Avatar
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    The Mountain Mirrycle is an absolutely awesome bar-end mirror--I wouldn't ride without it. It stays put, provides an excellent road-wide view, and on the bikes I've used it on, vibration hasn't been a problem.

    I tried the glasses-mounted kind, but the one I got didn't work well with my wire-framed glasses--needed constant adjustment and never felt secure--and I ended up taking it back to the store.

  9. #9
    Get A Life - Get A Bike cheeseflavor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Digital Gee
    Anyway, anyone with an opinion one way or d'other? Do they work? If so, what kind is best?
    My wife and I use the "Take-a-Look" glasses mount mirror by Bike Peddler products. They give you a great feild of vision, are lightweight, and work great. I feel naked without mine now.

    Take care,

    Steve

  10. #10
    kipuka explorer bkrownd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Digital Gee

    Anyway, anyone with an opinion one way or d'other? Do they work? If so, what kind is best?
    I like my m2racer glasses-mounted mirror: Stealth Mirror
    Last edited by bkrownd; 09-19-05 at 07:47 AM.
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  11. #11
    MaNiC! NZLcyclist's Avatar
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    Do any of you have pictures of how your mirrors are mounted? In particular any on the bars of a road bike, as I am visually impaired on my right side, the same side that the traffic is on.

    Brendon
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  12. #12
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    I use the Take a Look too. Glasses mounted works much better than the helmet mount. It doesn't move around like the helmet versions. I have no trouble with the vision. Being left eye dominant might be the reason for that.

  13. #13
    bici accumulatori pinerider's Avatar
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    I've had a few Third Eye Pro helmet mounts, 2 glue ons, 2 visor mounts. I really like the visor mounts, only trouble seems to be when I drop the helmet, it tends to land on the mirror and snap it off. The glue on mounts stay on pretty well, but my present helmet doesn't seem to have many flat areas to put it on.

    I've tried handlebar mounts, found they vibrate too much and require a long look down to see what's behind you. The helmet mount just needs a quick glance and is the best for checking on ramps (turn your head to the left and you can see any traffic on the on ramp behind you) The bar mounted mirrors just can't match the dorkiness factor a helmet mount provides. The visor mounted models are shorter and don't seem to stick out as much as the glue on models.

    I'm a special needs person when it comes to bike mirrors - if I turn my head to look behind me, my next look forward finds me and the bike pointing in a different direction. I'm dangerous without a mirror!
    ...!

  14. #14
    Rides again HiYoSilver's Avatar
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    Still looking for perfect mirror.

    Using helmet mirror for mirror #1
    Adv
    -- clearly see object approaching
    -- slides up out of way if desired
    -- no need to wear glasses
    Dis
    -- blind spots
    -- too often needs to be adjusted and not easy to adjust

    Ultra Lite handlebar mirror
    adv
    -- extremely light
    -- no vibration
    -- no blind spots as uses curved mirror
    -- one mt point is between hoods and drops and does not interfer with shifting
    dis
    -- since mirror is curved, hard to judge distances

    I'd love to find a good flat mirror for road bars.

    Still looking for perfect mirror. I don't want a mirror that requires glasses, as it's fall and no need for sunglasses.
    Hi 'o Silver away

  15. #15
    Senior Member filtersweep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cheeseflavor
    My wife and I use the "Take-a-Look" glasses mount mirror by Bike Peddler products. They give you a great feild of vision, are lightweight, and work great. I feel naked without mine now.

    Take care,

    Steve

    Amen to that- it is an engineering marvel- and it really doesn't vibrate. A great product.

  16. #16
    Senior Member
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    I have had all three. I have broke all three.

    Now I am using the mirror coming out of the end of the handlebar. I like it best. I don't have to move just look down and check the mirror.

    If you drop your bike -hope its on the other side...!!!

  17. #17
    Avatar out of order. MarkS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HiYoSilver
    Still looking for perfect mirror.

    Using helmet mirror for mirror #1

    Dis
    -- blind spots
    -- too often needs to be adjusted and not easy to adjust
    With the take-a-look and the helmet mount adapter, the only blind spot is immediately behind you and maybe off to your right. This would mainly mean that you might be blind to another biker coming up behind you. With a quick glance and a movement of the head, you sweep pretty much everything of concern. The adjustment occurs mainly at the beginning of a ride and only takes a few seconds. If you don't jostle the helmet when you remove it then you might not even need to adjust the mirror on the next outing. Usually when I stop anywhere that I'll be removing the helmet (store, library) I'll pull the mirror off and stick in my bag for safe keeping. Its easy to slip it on when I hit the road again.

  18. #18
    The Improbable Bulk Little Darwin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NZLcyclist
    Do any of you have pictures of how your mirrors are mounted? In particular any on the bars of a road bike, as I am visually impaired on my right side, the same side that the traffic is on.

    Brendon
    I ride in the states, and my problem is similar, even though my eye with limited vision is on the left. I don't know to what degree your vision is impaired (mine is moderate) but I find that mounting the mirror on the road side of my flat bar bike (end mounted) seems to work well... I don't think that moving my head far enough to see with my right eye is too much more than if my left eye's vision was as good. YMMV since with different impairments, bar styles or riding positions there may be different issue.

    With my vision, I don't do well with helmet or glasses mounted mirrors.
    Slow Ride Cyclists of NEPA

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  19. #19
    "Old & Slow Rider" BJ Ondo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Digital Gee
    I must be a slow learner. I've been trying to perfect the technique of glancing over my left shoulder for on-coming traffic without drifting left, and I'm getting better, but I'm not as good as I'd like to be. So I'm thinking, maybe I should get a rear view mirror.

    I know there are at least two types: handlebar and helmet (or sunglass frame-mounted). That's the full extent of my knowledge. Pretty impressive, huh.

    Anyway, anyone with an opinion one way or d'other? Do they work? If so, what kind is best?

    Well after trying to use one of those little "helmet mirrors", I just gave up, there a RPIA, IMHO! I've installed handlebar end mirrors on mine and the Mrs. bicycles and we really like them. Our's we less than $10 and do a great job, we angled then so they go "under the handlebar grip" on the left side of the bicycle, that way they don't get in the way of your shifting, etc.

    IF we ever go back to clip on mirrors, I'll try the the kind that clip to your glasses not the one's that clip to the helmet, JMHO.
    BJ & Jo Ondo
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  20. #20
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    I bought an "Aspire VeloTech" mirror that attaches to the drop bar end, go here for a good description with photos: http://www.aspirevelotech.com/Listings/Mirror.htm

    He also sells them on Ebay, do a search for "road bike mirror" and you'll find it.

    It works very well for me. It's meant to be mounted underneath your handlebar tape, but for now I have it attached with zip ties until I get around to re-wrapping my tape. This mirror is pretty inconspicuous, if you're image conscious. There's no vibration.

    I added the mirror after being hit from behind by another rider last year. I came away with just bruises and a taco'd rear wheel, but she took an ambulance ride with a broken collarbone and lots of road rash.
    Last edited by Goncalo Alves; 09-19-05 at 09:36 PM. Reason: Added better link to product.

  21. #21
    MaNiC! NZLcyclist's Avatar
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    BINGO!!! JUST what I need!!!!! Thanks
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  22. #22
    Touring senior
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    Hi Gee........I'm a strong proponent of a mirror - I've only used the helmet style, but it saved my life once. It took me 2 or 3 days to get used to it and to position it for easy use, but now it's so natural that I even find myself using it when grocery shopping.

    I did find that the glue stick-on pad will gradually weaken and it will fall off. I took a long darning needle and pierced two thin holes thru the helmet foam and sewed the pad with fine wire to the helmet. I used a doubled up foil from the top of a Gatorade powder can as a washer on the inside of the helmet (I was on tour at the time). It works great. If the geek factor bothers it only takes a moment to pop the arm and mirror off the pad --- but then you can't look at the ladies behind you in the grocery store!

  23. #23
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    I am using a glasses-mount and so far I am liking it. Iíve learned a few things doing so. Some cars sound closer than they are and vice versa. Also, on roads with a median into which cars park head-in and obstruct view to the other side, car sounds from the opposing lane sound similar to cars approaching in the lane I am riding in. Monitoring vehicles in the distance has shown that some catch up to you way faster then you think, while others might be slowly trolling for a parking spot. And last, you can check up on cars that appear suddenly, having just turned onto the same road I am on.

  24. #24
    Senior Member
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    My wife & I use the Blackburn Multi-Mirror which mounts in the bar end on all our road bikes. No vibes, just a clear view of whats behind you in your line of site.

  25. #25
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    i bought a mini wide vision car mirror that i attached to the back of the left glove. hold up and turn my hand and i can see everything behind. works great and was just a couple of bucks. i believe it is aprox 1.250 diameter. can be attached by psa or velcro.

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