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Making Rims Reflective: Alternative to Limited Selection Reflective Tires

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Making Rims Reflective: Alternative to Limited Selection Reflective Tires

Old 11-28-18, 01:33 AM
  #1  
michaelm101
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Making Rims Reflective: Alternative to Limited Selection Reflective Tires

75% of my riding occurs after sundown, and it's the reason all my bikes are equipped with reflective tires. The reflective tires immediately signal "BIKE" to the brains of persons driving automobiles, far better than anything else reflective, according to subjective experience AND research.

Dilemma: a friend just handed me a pair of Clement Xplor tires and they have been exactly what the doctor ordered! I like them better than my heavy, reflective Schwalbe Marathons. Unfortunately, they're standard black and not reflective.

Is there any company out there producing reflective materials for rims?

I have found these forums to be a much better use of time v.s. multiple Google searches. Thanks in advance!
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Old 11-28-18, 04:10 AM
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Do you have disc brakes? There are stickers, black stickers, that you can apply to your rims that are reflective at night. this is just one example. obviously would not work on the rim's sidewall if you have rim brakes

http://a.co/d/iMYYPZE

eric/fresno, ca.
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Old 11-28-18, 06:23 AM
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Oralite reflective conspicuity tape.

https://www.orafol.com/rs/americas/en/frontpage

https://www.hhsignsupply.com/product...Vinyl-c753.htm

I have used it on all my wheels. Video below.

@michaelm101, PM me your address and I'll send you an 8x10 sheet of the stuff, probably enough to do several sets of wheels as shown below. Or you can order it by the foot at H&H Sign Supply linked above.




-Tim

Last edited by TimothyH; 11-28-18 at 02:55 PM.
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Old 11-28-18, 08:03 AM
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Check out Albedo 100 reflective spray:https://www.albedo100.se/
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Old 11-28-18, 10:10 AM
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Continental GP 4000 S II Reflex
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Old 11-28-18, 11:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Elvo View Post
Continental GP 4000 S II Reflex
I have those in 25mm on another set of rims. Great tire, but a bit sketchy on the trails… Perhaps the 35s would do better, but I want to use the Clements!
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Old 11-28-18, 11:57 AM
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I know someone that put some form of reflective material on his spokes. Google - reflective bicycle spokes price - and see what you think.

I bought some wheel reflectors several years ago, they were not very reflective at all. So, that I am not recommending.
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Old 11-28-18, 12:00 PM
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patches of reflective tape, if not using rim brakes, they can wrap over that.


Decades ago I brought back from NL, a ring of reflective plastic tubing,
with a steel wire through it ..

it interlaced through the spokes of the wheel , so above the rim
and so not getting darkened by road and rim brake smunge,
like sidewall reflective bands do..
... unless you keep cleaning the sides of the tires...





...

Last edited by fietsbob; 11-28-18 at 04:09 PM.
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Old 11-29-18, 01:22 PM
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Originally Posted by michaelm101 View Post
75% of my riding occurs after sundown, and it's the reason all my bikes are equipped with reflective tires. The reflective tires immediately signal "BIKE" to the brains of persons driving automobiles, far better than anything else reflective, according to subjective experience AND research...
If you can fit full fenders to bike, they make an excellent surface for the application of retroreflective sheeting like 3M Scotchlite. Fenders offer perhaps 10X more reflective area than the little shiny strips on some tires, reflect ~180 degrees from left, rearwards and to the right and keep road debris off your clothing, bags, bike and drivetrain.

Bought some good reflective tape

Some taillights emit light to the sides in addition to rear. You could mount tailights directed to each side, which may be more conspicuous/safer than reflective tires or fenders.
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Old 11-29-18, 01:25 PM
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Lightbulb

Why not just get the Schwalbe tires you need?
Nearly all current models are reflective.
schwalbe.com/en/start.html
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Old 11-29-18, 02:53 PM
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This is what you're talking about, I think. These
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Old 11-29-18, 03:00 PM
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Originally Posted by seeker333 View Post
If you can fit full fenders to bike, they make an excellent surface for the application of retroreflective sheeting like 3M Scotchlite. Fenders offer perhaps 10X more reflective area than the little shiny strips on some tires, reflect ~180 degrees from left, rearwards and to the right and keep road debris off your clothing, bags, bike and drivetrain.

Bought some good reflective tape

Some taillights emit light to the sides in addition to rear. You could mount tailights directed to each side, which may be more conspicuous/safer than reflective tires or fenders.
Thanks. Indeed, fenders are great and I had them on one of my bikes, however, I'm in So Cal and the times I actually benefit (as opposed to being burdened) from them are few and far between (I returned them). All my bikes have racks which act as a rear fender and I will be posting about where to find a quickie mount front only fender. About lights, I have plenty, 3 - 750-900s up front, one with an excellent amber sidelight (Lights in Motion), and 3 hotshots in the rear (one spare that stays "off"). Studies have shown that illumination of the circular bike tires are reacted to much faster than anything else, due primarily to the fact that they immediately signal "BIKE" to the brain...
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Old 11-29-18, 03:04 PM
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Originally Posted by angerdan View Post
Why not just get the Schwalbe tires you need?
Nearly all current models are reflective.
schwalbe.com/en/start.html
Thanks. I examined and it appears that only the heavier, "touring" or "commuting" tires are reflective. In fact, I have reflective Marathons, and Contis, but they are all the heavier touring type tires. If anyone knows of a lightweight reflective tire, please chime in...
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Old 11-29-18, 03:12 PM
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I put a couple patches of 3M 680 reflective tape on my rims and crankarms. I've had drivers and other cyclists comment on how recognizable I was (as a cyclist) from a distance. I use a mix of white, red, and black reflective tape, depending on where it's going.
On the rims, I put 4 patches evenly spaced around. They're roughly 1" x 2" each. They extend from the bottom of the brake surface around the 'V' to the bottom of the other brake surface.
On crankarms, I use a strip roughly 3/4" x 4" on the front and back of the crankarm. In my experience, this provides comparable visibility to reflective leg bands, but it maintains its reflective properties when wet.
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Old 11-29-18, 03:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Alphamoose View Post
This is what you're talking about, I think. These
Thanks. Looks good. I just contacted them to see how they mount so perfectly.The last thing I want is imperfect circles spinning around!
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Old 11-29-18, 03:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN View Post
I know someone that put some form of reflective material on his spokes. Google - reflective bicycle spokes price - and see what you think.

I bought some wheel reflectors several years ago, they were not very reflective at all. So, that I am not recommending.
Several of us use this https://lightweights.com/
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Old 11-29-18, 03:56 PM
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I used Lightweights on my spokes and frame, I like it a lot and they have lasted through harsh commuting conditions.





Additionally, I like the Cateye spoke light

Last edited by Hypno Toad; 11-29-18 at 03:59 PM.
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Old 11-29-18, 08:12 PM
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A really simple reflective approach is to take short pieces of tape and wrap them around two adjacent spokes. So with a 32 spoke wheel, you can have 16 pieces of tape. I"ve seen it down. Works really well and is cheap.

Ben
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Old 11-29-18, 10:24 PM
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My spoke lights provide amazing night visibility of my bicycle.

Last edited by wingless; 12-07-18 at 02:32 PM. Reason: Fixed link
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Old 11-30-18, 12:23 AM
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We use 3M spoke reflectors, such as
here here
, on all our bikes. They work great but over time get dirty. On a frequently used bike they need to be taken off and washed maybe once a year. Reflective tires still make it better, but become less critical. To note is that the reflectors come in different lengths and under different brand names. As a reference in Europe a set may cost few euros.
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Old 11-30-18, 03:09 AM
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Why not go the full gorilla...
https://www.monkeylectric.com/m232_bike_light/
​​​​​​​MONKEY LIGHTS
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Old 11-30-18, 02:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Tamiya View Post
Why not go the full gorilla...
https://www.monkeylectric.com/m232_bike_light/
MONKEY LIGHTS
I honestly think there are angry (non-cyclist) drivers out there who will be targeting me if i used these. Thanks everybody!

VERDICT: I'm selling the French Clement Xplors and going German! Schwalbe or Contis with reflective sidewalls! I have them on my other bikes and wheelsets and they truly stand out and make a difference...
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Old 11-30-18, 02:34 PM
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I've got a Monkey Light on my commute bike, and honestly, every time I've used it, if I pass a pedestrian they smile and wave, and I've had drivers pull up to me and tell me how much they enjoy the lights. The only problem, I guess, would be if I they got so entranced that they ran into me...
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Old 12-01-18, 12:40 PM
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Angry

Originally Posted by Tamiya View Post
Why not go the full gorilla...
https://www.monkeylectric.com/m232_bike_light/
​​​​​​​MONKEY LIGHTS
As someone who hates RGB on computer components, those spoke lights triggered me.
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Old 12-03-18, 09:21 AM
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Reflective material is just not as reliable as lights are. The angle has to be right, and often, it is not. It's so easy to put a Nite Ize Spokelit in one of your wheels. You can be sure people will see it, and I would not worry that it will anger people.

You could use two or more, of course. I use one in my rear wheel only because it distracts me in the front wheel.
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