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Old 06-16-06, 06:44 PM   #1
stercomm
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Mirror, Mirror on the ride

Okay folks need you to weigh in. I have some friends who are serious cyclist and even older than me. They are busting my chops to get a mirror (either on the bike or extended one on the glasses). They swear by it, I swear I'd never get a mirror. Now a little background, did a lot of racing in my 20's & 30's and still have not fully flushed out the old mindset that seems to go with that crowd, actually only thing left from those days is an aversion to a mirror. However, having said all of this it does get old having to keep turning around to sort traffic out before making a left hand turn. So if by chance I broke down and got a mirror any suggestions; I'm not saying I will but... plus on today's ride got a dust off from a dump truck who buzzed me at 40-45 mph and was no more than a foot away, no traffic on the other side as there was another dump truck right behind and he eased out and passed with plenty of room to spare. Now one question that comes to mind is it better to see what is coming or just react to it when it happens?
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Old 06-16-06, 09:35 PM   #2
Gary W. Graley
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I really love the mirror on my brake grip, and one day I road without it, couldn't find it after
the winter storage and I was VERY paranoid with not being able to view behind me, and
I see that Nashbar has one smiliar to what I have, looks nicer than mine, it has a bracket
that slips over the base of the brake hood and is then held in place with velcro strap

See their add Here

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Old 06-16-06, 09:54 PM   #3
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This is a difficult subject. I learned the following on a recent cross country tour with lots of traffic:
Most bikers had no mirror.
Some had a helmet mounted mirror.
I was one of the few who had a drop bar mounted large mirror.

My experience was mixed. This mirror needed often fine tuning to be useful. You also have to actually look at it which means you are not looking at the wheel 6 inches in front of you as in a pace line.
The mirror is useful if you ride alone and keep an eye out for things coming up from behind.
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Old 06-16-06, 10:53 PM   #4
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I use the Blackburn mirror referenced above. I have two of them and move from bike to bike as needed. They work on aero or non aero brake hoods and bullhorn bars, there is a lock ring that you can adjust so it stays where you want it to. Once you get used to it, you will not feel right riding without it.




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Old 06-17-06, 12:25 AM   #5
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I'm thoroughly sold on the idea of a mirror - I haven't tried a handlebar style, but the helmet type is excellent - it takes a few rides to get used to and set up right. All it takes is a twitch in the eyeball and you know what's behind you. I find that I'm so used to it that when I stop to buy groceries (I tour), I keep looking up to see what's coming behind me........oh,oh, watch out for the fat broad in a hurry..!
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Old 06-17-06, 05:03 AM   #6
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Stercomm,

I use the one which attaches to the glasses. They are not very expensive (under $10). Require little adjustment during a ride. And are easily used on multible bikes. A slight twist of the neck and I can see what's behind me while still looking forward. I started with one about 4 years ago and don't like to ride without it--- even on trails. Good luck!
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Old 06-17-06, 05:37 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stercomm

However, having said all of this it does get old having to keep turning around to sort traffic out before making a left hand turn.
Having a mirror does not relieve you of turning your head and checking before one makes a left hand turn. Much like automobile mirrors, they can have blind spots, also.

I used to use a glasses-mounted mirror. Then I lost it. I have a brand new one in the garage, still in the container. Haven't used one since I lost the first one.

I found I was watching the mirror too much, and it was detracting from my riding experience. However, the glasses-mounted mirror did work great. It was steady and I adjusted to it very well - a bit too well!

As I have 3 different helmets (one for each bike) I wouldn't want a helmet mirror. Also, I don't treat my helmets very kindly, and I would break them.
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Old 06-17-06, 05:57 AM   #8
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Great advice by all, thanks much. I'll let you know what I decide, I'm leaning towards one that I can attach to my glasses. Good point DnvrFox on the blind spots.
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Old 06-17-06, 06:40 AM   #9
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I have a mirror on my road helmet and one on my commuter helmet. I also have a mirror on the handlebar on my commuter bike.
The helmet mirror lets me see "most" of what's behind me, whether it's a car, truck, or another cyclist coming up on me.
I don't use it to see if it's safe to change lanes or move to the left for a left turn. I use it to see if there is anything back there. If I see something then I know it's not safe to change lanes. If I don't see anything, I turn my head to look and if it's ok, then I'll change lanes. Just like car mirrors, helmet mirrors have blind spots.
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Old 06-17-06, 06:54 AM   #10
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Take-A-Look glasses mounted mirror. Nice large square surface, very adjustable, and can be moved from one style of glasses to another. There is no blind spot. Unlike a car mirror, you can point it where you want by simply turning your head but it's still not a bad idea to look over your shoulder when crossing traffic to be sure. I am very uncomfortable without it. It may not be for everybody but in the situatuon I ride in, narrow road with no shoulder and lots of trucks, it's nice to know when I have semi's coming from behind and from the front. If it looks like we'll all arrive at the same time, I may just pull over.

I highly recommend it depending on your situation.
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Old 06-17-06, 07:54 AM   #11
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I have the Blackburn brake hood mirror on Frankenbike, and like it a lot, but it interferes with the Flightdeck control buttons on my Salsa LaRaza. So I tried the Sprintech bar end mirrors and have been happy with them also. Not as large a viewing area, but can see both sides of the bike. They don't vibrate from the road, adjust easy and just plain look cool:

http://www.theyeagergroup.com/ttdc_sprintech.htm

If you want a glasses mounted mirror, check out the Beerview Mirror that is custom made from the bottle cap of your favorite malty beverage:

http://www.marketingcounsel.com/beerview_mirrors.html

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Old 06-17-06, 09:22 AM   #12
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I use a helmet mounted mirror and can recommend it. I also had a handlebar mirror on my touring bike, but recently broke it. I'll get another.

The helmet mirror is worth it. It takes a little getting used to but here is a tip. Figure out which is your dominant eye, then put the mirror on the OTHER side. You can determine your dominant eye by simply putting your fist and thumb up at arms length, and then closing one eye and then the other other. It won't "move" with your dominant eye open.

Put the mirror on the other side and you'll have to focus on it to use it, your weaker eye can still scan and see peripherally, and your dominant eye will still have an unobstructed view.
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Old 06-17-06, 09:31 AM   #13
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I agree about not relying on the mirror to make a left turn! But it's like in a car, just to keep in the
know what's coming up, I tried the eye glass mirror but not the helmet style, I just like the one
for the handle bar, the one I have is very old, and not available any longer, it mounts like the one
on Dogbait's bike but has a circular style mirror, I need to tighten it down more as vibration causes
it to move some, so I'm leaning towards getting one like his instead...
G2
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Old 06-17-06, 09:36 AM   #14
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I have tried the glass mounted mirrors. I have a problem in that I get motion sickness when I keep seeing things flying by on the mirror out of the corner of my eye. Does anyone else have this type of experiance? Do I have the mirror adjusted wrong?
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Old 06-17-06, 10:46 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stercomm
Now one question that comes to mind is it better to see what is coming or just react to it when it happens?
My Take-A-Look glasses mounted mirror gives me confidence to ride on busy streets. It is not a cure all, many times a car has snuck up behind me when I wasn't looking.

I have forgetten it a few times. I am never more than 100 feet away from the house before I realize it. Compaired to forgetting other things, I was 6 miles out once before I realized I forgot my gloves.
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Old 06-17-06, 10:52 AM   #16
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Another big fan of the Blackburn velcro-mount mirrors here. I use one on the hoods of my road bike, and one that goes around the end of the flat bars on my MTB. Both of them are mounted on the left. Because I have only one good eye, glasses or helmet mount mirrors did not work very well for me.
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Old 06-17-06, 04:02 PM   #17
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I've used about every variation of mirror over the years, but one thing remains constant -- I feel vulnerable without one. One benefit that isn't obvious 'til you've used one is that you'll know when there are no cars are coming, and the road is yours.

My favorite is the Take-a-Look that others have mentioned. Superior quality and since it mounts on on your glasses, you can scan the road behind you and there's almost never any vibration to blur the image. I've even used it in road races to keep an eye out for wheel suckers.

Whichever mirror you choose, once you've used it for awhile, you won't want to ride without it.
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Old 06-17-06, 04:12 PM   #18
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I brought the mirror question some time back and got some great responses.

http://69.16.211.161/showthread.php?t=139747

I got myself a bar-end mirror and loved it. When I got another bike, I broke the thing that held the mirror on the handlebar, and started riding without a mirror. Apparently, my confidence level (foolishness level?) had increased, because whereas before I was anxious without the mirror, I am now confident without it. I can do the turn my head without turning the bike thing.

That said, I keep meaning to get another mirror (probably a glasses mounted mirror) but keep forgetting.
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Old 06-17-06, 10:35 PM   #19
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Tried every mirror known to biking. With the helmet style I just could never get a consistant field of vision. This mirror works for me. Made in Italy. http://www.biketiresdirect.com/produ...5306&c=1339629

CBO also had them on clearance. I have been riding with a group weekly and many use a mirror and a rear flasher device. Too many insane and careless drivers out there.
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Old 06-18-06, 07:04 AM   #20
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I've tried the mirror mounted on glasses, but I'd put it on and then forget to put on my helmet. Now I use a mirror on my helmet. As I pull out of the driveway, I always look to adjust the mirror. When I can't do that, it means I've forgotten the helmet. Not much of a trip back to the bike shed to get the helmet from the driveway.
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Old 06-18-06, 08:06 AM   #21
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I've got one on my Bent.... i will sometimes wear one on the roads, it's called "take a look" and fits on my glasses.
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Old 06-18-06, 08:22 AM   #22
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I've had several handlebar mounted mirrors and one glasses mounted one. But like someone mentioned above, I was not watching the road ahead as much and it was detracting from the cycling experience. These days my roads are relatively free of cars and I prefer NO mirror. It's a bit of a false sense of security. However, if riding in city traffic a mirror could be a safety feature.
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Old 06-18-06, 09:31 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oilman_15106
Tried every mirror known to biking. With the helmet style I just could never get a consistant field of vision. This mirror works for me. Made in Italy. http://www.biketiresdirect.com/produ...5306&c=1339629

CBO also had them on clearance. I have been riding with a group weekly and many use a mirror and a rear flasher device. Too many insane and careless drivers out there.
I have this setup too.
I never rode with a mirror before this year.
I ride alone, with some traffic and it helps in this situation.
This setup does take some getting use to and requires some fine tuning.
Overall, I give it a B+.
Ride Safe.
Cheers.
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Old 06-18-06, 10:02 PM   #24
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I would recommend any mirror type you feel comfy with. Funny, we wouldn't drive our cars without mirrors, but we have endless debates in BF about their use on bicycles.

Ok show of hands...who rides with a helmet, but without a mirror?
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Old 06-18-06, 10:13 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chipcom
I would recommend any mirror type you feel comfy with. Funny, we wouldn't drive our cars without mirrors, but we have endless debates in BF about their use on bicycles.

Ok show of hands...who rides with a helmet, but without a mirror?
At the moment, me. But I'm going to get another mirror.
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