Horn or not?

Commuting, Day rides, Audax, Incidents, etc.
swansonj
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Horn or not?

Postby swansonj » 3 Feb 2011, 10:32am

In the "cycle camera" thread, the clip that started it all shows the rider being endangered by a van that cuts in to the left across him. The rider shouts (rather loudly) "keep right". It strikes me this could be a situation where a loud horn (such as the Air Zound) could be useful. John Franklin, on the other hand, recommends against them, on the basis IIRC that they create bad feeling against cyclists among motorists, and that you are better off concentrating on avoiding a collision than in making loud noises at motorists (my paraphrase).

Who uses them and who doesn't? I have one fitted but very rarely have the presence of mind to use it in those split-second-crisis moments when it might be most useful.

james01
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Re: Horn or not?

Postby james01 » 3 Feb 2011, 11:20am

You've hit the nail on the head. When your life is in danger the last thing you're going to do is spend time finding the horn button. Which means that the main use is as a revenge noise to highlight bad driving. Satisfying but illegal.

KTM690
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Joined: 1 Feb 2011, 8:16pm

Re: Horn or not?

Postby KTM690 » 3 Feb 2011, 12:15pm

Using a horn would be politer than bashing the van that your trying to illegally undertake.

Less likely to earn you a kicking as well.

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horizon
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Location: Cornwall

Re: Horn or not?

Postby horizon » 3 Feb 2011, 12:44pm

swansonj wrote:Who uses them and who doesn't?


I fitted one on the tandem. It was really for those "Toad of Toad Hall" moments - you know, toot, toot and all that when being given a send off by relatives. Best £20 worth of fun I've bought in a long time. I did like knowing it was there for pedestrians when making long, fast descents (though being able to stop properly is probably a better strategy). It's also more effective than just a friendly wave to passing cyclists. I've used it a couple of times with cars but don't really know how useful it was. They're really for people who don't mind a bit of clutter on the dashboard (we also bought a motorbike intercom for the tandem so you can see where I am coming from on this :D).
Let's just get Brexit done so that we can get on with the important job of re-joining the EU!

crazydavid
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Re: Horn or not?

Postby crazydavid » 3 Feb 2011, 1:39pm

I have an ecoblaster on my bike. Sold in boat chandlers.

I only use it occasionally. My commute takes me down a quiet country road popular with dog walkers. A quick toot from a few hundred yards away is usually met with a friendly wave.

I do cover the horn button when I approach a particularly dangerous junction, drivers have pulled out on me a few times at this spot and if don't think that they have seen me, I will use it then. I do try to refrain from using it to retaliate, but sometimes I'm not sucessful!

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Mick F
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Re: Horn or not?

Postby Mick F » 3 Feb 2011, 2:10pm

Some years ago, I was going down a narrow shared-use path on my way from the Forth Bridge to Edinburgh - cyclist aren't allowed on the A90.

There's two ladies - of a certain age - walking two abreast ahead of me and I'm approaching from their rear. I ring my bell.
No reaction.
I ring again, getting nearer and nearer.
No reaction.
I'm five yards behind them, and ring, ring, RING.
No reaction. They continue chatting without a care in the world!
I basically stop behind them and say, "Excuse me please."
Old as they were, they jumped out of their skin! Apologies all round, and I left them with smiles!

I wonder if I'd had an Airzound? ............
Mick F. Cornwall

kwackers
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Re: Horn or not?

Postby kwackers » 3 Feb 2011, 2:18pm

KTM690 wrote:Using a horn would be politer than bashing the van that your trying to illegally undertake.

Less likely to earn you a kicking as well.

No offence, but I'd rather trust the police and courts judgement than yours (particularly as they have ALL the facts). With that in mind, which one of the two was prosecuted? Ah, yes. The van driver. 5 points too!
Seems it's you against the justice system then.

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Steve Kish
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Re: Horn or not?

Postby Steve Kish » 3 Feb 2011, 3:47pm

I prefer to either shout lightly like 'mind your backs, please' or if needed 'OY, ARE YOU ******* BLIND, MATE?', depending on circumstances. Horns and bells are too impersonal, IMO.
Old enough to know better but too young to care.

Malaconotus
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Re: Horn or not?

Postby Malaconotus » 3 Feb 2011, 3:49pm

KTM690 wrote:Using a horn would be politer than bashing the van that your trying to illegally undertake.

Less likely to earn you a kicking as well.


This is a really good forum. A lot of people really enjoy the discussions on here. Please stop trolling. Spoiling other people's enjoyment for your own amusement is really quite sad.

Graham

Malaconotus
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Re: Horn or not?

Postby Malaconotus » 3 Feb 2011, 3:49pm

I find other road users, and especially shared path users, really appreciate the friendly ping of my bell and often remark that they wish more people used them.

Graham

ericonabike
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Re: Horn or not?

Postby ericonabike » 3 Feb 2011, 4:11pm

I decided long ago that I wasn't going to die of embarassment and happily bellow 'Oi!' at amax dB if I'm not convinced a motorist has clocked me. With pedestrians, you can't win: if you use a bell to warn of approach you're being domineering; if you prefer 'on your right' or 'excuse me' then there is a 50/50 chance they'll scatter like sheep before a wolf. And will still say you're domineering.
Motorists' mantra: Cyclists must obey the law and the Highway Code AT ALL TIMES. Unless their doing so would HOLD ME UP.

KTM690
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Re: Horn or not?

Postby KTM690 » 3 Feb 2011, 4:21pm

ericonabike wrote:I decided long ago that I wasn't going to die of embarassment and happily bellow 'Oi!' at amax dB if I'm not convinced a motorist has clocked me. With pedestrians, you can't win: if you use a bell to warn of approach you're being domineering; if you prefer 'on your right' or 'excuse me' then there is a 50/50 chance they'll scatter like sheep before a wolf. And will still say you're domineering.


When riding the South Downs I find loudly reciting the "Banjo Duel" from Deliverance, while other cyclists in the group make squealing piggy noises, makes theramblers scatter real quick.

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meic
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Re: Horn or not?

Postby meic » 3 Feb 2011, 4:32pm

Horns are generally not worth it, I got to see and hear one of those bicycle air horns.
Close up and in your ear, it makes an impression but the people in tin boxes will hardly hear it.
I fitted a nice pair of air horns to my motorbike and they make a earsplitting sound in the garage but it still wasnt enough to wake up real motorists out on the road.
Yma o Hyd

KTM690
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Re: Horn or not?

Postby KTM690 » 3 Feb 2011, 4:44pm

meic wrote:Horns are generally not worth it, I got to see and hear one of those bicycle air horns.
Close up and in your ear, it makes an impression but the people in tin boxes will hardly hear it.
I fitted a nice pair of air horns to my motorbike and they make a earsplitting sound in the garage but it still wasnt enough to wake up real motorists out on the road.


I find using the hooter on the motorbike makes progress a lot safer. Be proactive with it to alert other road users of your presence as opposed to reactive ie use when you in a road position you shouldn't be in and feel vulnerable. Coupled with a friendly nod of the head or wave goes a long way in maintaining smooth progress and keeps the journey's positive for all.

KTM690
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Joined: 1 Feb 2011, 8:16pm

Re: Horn or not?

Postby KTM690 » 3 Feb 2011, 4:52pm

kwackers wrote:
KTM690 wrote:Using a horn would be politer than bashing the van that your trying to illegally undertake.

Less likely to earn you a kicking as well.

No offence, but I'd rather trust the police and courts judgement than yours (particularly as they have ALL the facts). With that in mind, which one of the two was prosecuted? Ah, yes. The van driver. 5 points too!
Seems it's you against the justice system then.


Yes and every cyclist hating, gorilla of a van driver, will already be aware of that BBC video. Resulting in their having a very low threshold for battering a cyclist in a similar situation and nicking their camera!

Is it worth the risk of trying to cut up the inside of a vehicle indicating left and then bashing his van?

Would it not be better to avoid confrontation and remain in the queue for the junction or wait untill it's safe to make progress?

You ride a motorbike? Would you try the same move on a moped?