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  1. #1
    Glutton for Punishment
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    Which type of mirror?

    My wife had some of the vertebrae in her neck laminated a few years ago, and consequently doesn't have full side-to-side movement anymore. For her, a mirror is a real necessity to keep tabs on overtaking traffic. Right now she's got a generic bar-mounted mirror with a shaft about 8" long on her Raleigh Superbe, and she just can't seem to get it into a useful position. I need to find a better solution for her. She wears bifocals, so I'm not certain a helmet-mounted mirror would be useful either.

    What would be a better option for the North End-style bars on her bike? Same type with a longer shaft? Bar-end? Ride behind her all the time and holler "Look out!"?

  2. #2
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    A Third Eye mirror she can attach to her glasses would be cool. She would just need to adjust the mirror and glance the eye to the left when she wanted to look back and see what traffic was looking like.

    Koffee

  3. #3
    Glutton for Punishment
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    Yeah, I suppose she wouldn't really have to change the focus of her eye from far to near just to tell if there's a car in the mirror. Maybe I'll tape a dental mirror to her helmet to see if it's a viable idea for her.

  4. #4
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    I thought the mirrors had that special surface so you could see traffic from farther away. Does a dental mirror give the same result? If not, it would probably be a bit safer to get the third eye.

    Try the Hot Deals Forum here and get the 20% off coupon code for Performance Bike and get the Third Eye. It won't cost you hardly anything, and if you live close to a Performance, you can avoid paying shipping by having it sent to the store (I tell you to get it off the website because I don't think the 20% off would apply if you went inside the store).

    Koffee

  5. #5
    LeMond Lives! Dusk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mswantak
    Yeah, I suppose she wouldn't really have to change the focus of her eye from far to near just to tell if there's a car in the mirror. Maybe I'll tape a dental mirror to her helmet to see if it's a viable idea for her.

    Please be careful! if your Dental mirror is a real glass mirror you are taking a risk that is not worth it. For $10- 14 get a Third eye or any biking mirror that is plastic is much safer. No one plans on going down on a bike or losing an eye in a test.

    Cheers.

  6. #6
    Glutton for Punishment
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    The dental mirror would just be to test whether she could use a helmet-mount mirror comfortably, but no, it doesn't have a convex surface -- it's not even glass, just polished, plated metal.

    I'm still trying to understand why a helmet-mount ought to cost more than a conventional mirror; it's not made of anything different than a regular mirror, and in fact uses less of it. Oh, well...

  7. #7
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    I have tried the "glasses mirror" for a number of years and I have always found them to require much concentration to look into the mirror, focus on the traffic, and determine what the situation is. Remember that the mirror is very small and your head must be in just the right position to see the road behind you. I have used a number of different types of bar end mirrors, and I have found the one shown below to be the best for a couple of reasons.

    Mirrors that attach to the bar via velcro shake too much to work. Some mirrors that screw into the end of the bar will work themselves lose and fall out while you are riding. At a minimum you have to stop, turnaround and retrieve the mirror and most of the time the fall will break the mirror glass. I went through one a year for a bout 4 years before I tired this model, which I have not had a problem with. This model also folds nicely if you have limited space in the garage or while transporting the bike.

    My 2 cents worth based on trying lost of mirrors.

  8. #8
    Glutton for Punishment
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    A bar-end mirror is what I've been leaning toward. I used them for years on my motorcycles, and they seem like the best option for seeing something beside your own armpit.

  9. #9
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    http://www.cycleaware.com/products/reflex.php


    I have this mirror and never leave home without it. She need only move her eyes to see behind her. My wife had a laminectomy of nearly her entire spinal column to remove a benign tumor that compressed her spinal cord 90%.

  10. #10
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    I've been using the eyeglass-mounted type for a little while now and I like it a lot - and I use bifocals. True, you have to glance slightly upward and to the left to see the road, but once I got used to it, it has lowered my stress level on busy streets. My local bike store told me that the advantage of the gless-mounted one is that it doesn't jump all over the place like a handlebar or helmet one. I dunno - that's just a thought.

    CAUTION, though: it's really easy to get too caught up with the luxury of having a view of what's behind you. As always, pay attention to the ride.

    Oh, and also: I "practiced" a bit in my driveway to get used to the novelty. I figure that beats rolling my head around and trying to adjust it as I dashed down the street...

  11. #11
    Glutton for Punishment
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ranger
    My wife had a laminectomy of nearly her entire spinal column to remove a benign tumor that compressed her spinal cord 90%.
    Yikes! My missus had a laminectomy of C3, 4, & 5 in 1998, and a fusion of L4 & 5 last December, but that's a hangnail compared to what your wife's been through. Hope she's doing okay, Ranger.

  12. #12
    Humvee of bikes =Worksman Nightshade's Avatar
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    If all else fails do what I did.......look at motor scooter &
    motorcycle mirrors for suitable mirror. I found a dandy scooter
    mirror that I mounted with vinyl coated "P" clips to the bars.

  13. #13
    Glutton for Punishment
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    Yeah, a motorcycle bar-end mirror would work too. A bit heavy, maybe.

    I could always strap the bathroom mirror to my back and ride in front of her, too.

  14. #14
    Senior Member cyclezealot's Avatar
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    The other day on the trail, I saw a mirror on a bike stopped for a break...The owner said the mirror was purchased at Performance.
    It had a concave shape to it..Really took in the big picture..When in Performance I have never seen them on the shelf..Think I would like one.
    It was mounted on the handlebar.

  15. #15
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    I vote for bar end, like tomsanborn's. I've got one on the Giant and really like it, great field of view, rock-steady, and a quality product. About $15 at your LBS.

  16. #16
    Senior Member vixen2yall's Avatar
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    awhile back i was looking at a helmet w/ a built in mirror just like the rear view in a car... not sure where i saw it though. google it and i'm sure it would come up though. might be worth looking into.

    cheers
    kat

  17. #17
    Senior Member Don Cook's Avatar
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    I am going to vote for Coffee's tip on the small mirrors that clip to your eyeglass stem.
    I had 7,000 miles or so riding with one that attaches to the helmut. After awhile, the vibration from road shock etc, would cause it to loose its position. A mirror that mounts to the bike is at least potentially susceptible to the same road shock. About 4 months ago I went looking for a eyeglass mounted mirror. It is great! And it goes with you whether or not you are wearing a helmut.

  18. #18
    LeMond Lives! Dusk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Don Cook
    I am going to vote for Coffee's tip on the small mirrors that clip to your eyeglass stem.
    I had 7,000 miles or so riding with one that attaches to the helmut. After awhile, the vibration from road shock etc, would cause it to loose its position. A mirror that mounts to the bike is at least potentially susceptible to the same road shock. About 4 months ago I went looking for a eyeglass mounted mirror. It is great! And it goes with you whether or not you are wearing a helmut.
    I have had more problem with bike mounted mirrors, stolen, broken, gets bashed in racks as the bike is now wider, vibrates off.

    I had the same problem with the mirror getting loose and moving. I pulled the mirror out of the socket and took some sand paper and roughed it up. The socket was made up of four little arms, that I also tried to sand. Seemed to work fine the thing is still holding.

    Another person said they get the mirror in place and then supper glue it. Any fine tuning is done by bending the wire back into place if it gets bumped.

    About the biggest problem is finding a place on the helmet that is flat that you can mount it to. An old helmet I used to have never had the mirrors double stick tape come off. Now the only flat spot on my two Bells is on the foam in a vent and about every 2-3 months I have to put on new double sided tape.

    Cheers,
    Dusk

  19. #19
    Member ChuckM's Avatar
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    I've been riding a little over a year and got a helmet-mounted mirror after my first fall off the bike caused by wobbling around because I thought there was a car behind me. I was too new to know how to look over my shoulder, and the bad pavement caught my front tire and slammed me over on my left side (nine stitches over the left eye).

    I read somewhere that a bar-end mirror depends on the position of the bar to see behind you, so I got a mirror that I mounted on my visor. After that, I got a road bike and picked up a mirror to mount on my eyeglass temple. (You don't use the visor on a road bike because you'd have to tilt your head 'way back while leaning so far forward.) It had the advantage of being larger and square, giving me a better view. In addition to that, I wear bifocals and it isn't a factor for me at all.

  20. #20
    Member ChuckM's Avatar
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    tomsanborn said: he didn't like that you'd have to turn your head to position the eyeglass-temple-mounted mirror to see behind you. I may well be mistaken, but it seems to me preferable to turn your head a bit to see behind you than to move your handlebars for the same purpose.

  21. #21
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    There was an old movie where an Italian race car driver walks up to his new car and pulls the mirror off saying " I no cara whata behinda me".

    When I ride with my eight year old godson, he cares WAY too much about what is behind him. He is constantly looking back, while a hazard is directly in front of him. I have tried to convince him that his job is to watch the road in front of him, and ride in a straight and steady line. Likewise, it is the job of a driver in the car approaching from the rear to observe where the bikes are, and to make adjustments accordingly. If the driver THINKS the person on the bike is responsible to know the car's position, and then change the bike's position accordingly - that is when problems begin to happen.

    So, an alternative to mirrors is to just watch where you are going and say "I no cara whata behinda me".

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by alanbikehouston
    So, an alternative to mirrors is to just watch where you are going and say "I no cara whata behinda me".
    That may be OK, if you only make right turns

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