Adventure Cycling Association Forum

Bicycle Travel => Gear Talk => Topic started by: adventurepete on October 27, 2006, 03:52:19 pm

Title: Mirrors
Post by: adventurepete on October 27, 2006, 03:52:19 pm
I am thinking of adding a mirror onto the handlebar of my bike.Does anyone have experience with mirrors attached to the handlebars? Do handlebar mirrors work well? Is a helmet or glasses mirror better? I appreciate any advice that you can give. Thanks.

Travel Safe.  Peter Campbell
Title: Mirrors
Post by: Sailariel on October 27, 2006, 08:57:23 pm
I,personally like mirrors. The mirror I like is made by Blackburn and attaches to the hoods with Velcro. It`s a good mirror and seems aerodynamic. You`ll probably hear arguments against mirrors--I happen to like them. Rode motorcycles from 1958 to 1982 (got married and wife is terrified of them) and always had mirrors. On a bicycle a mirror on the left is sufficient. Works great for 18wheelers and class B Motorhomes.  Best regards, Alex

Title: Mirrors
Post by: BrianCM on October 28, 2006, 01:25:57 am
I use bar-end mirrors.  They fold out of the way when I don't need them, and they don't take room on the handlebar.

Title: Mirrors
Post by: FredHiltz on October 28, 2006, 08:45:16 am
They all work OK. The choice is personal preference IMO. My choice is eyeglass mount for a couple of reasons: I can scan a wide swath behind me by moving my head. My handlebar mirror too easily bumped out of adjustment and finally broke when my bike fell over one day.

A few folks have worried about trauma to the eye in a crash. I have never seen a report of that, although it has probably happened somewhere, sometime.

My mirror is the Chuck Harris, which has quite a cult following. Google search (


Title: Mirrors
Post by: adventurepete on October 28, 2006, 12:59:52 pm
Great onformation! Thanks, this helps a lot. With the glasses mount I have had trouble getting mine to fit all of my glasses. Sometimes the stems are too thick and I can't attach the mirror.

Travel Safe.  Peter Campbell
Title: Mirrors
Post by: ptaylor on October 28, 2006, 09:19:01 pm
I prefer a mirror that mounts to my helmet. It is always there, regardless of what glasses I am using. It also gives me an added incentive to wear my helmet, and doesn't break if my bike falls over.

Some people can't focus one eye on the helmet/eyeglass mirror. At least they tell me they can't. I guess it's kind of like learning to aim a rifle with both eyes open. In that case, a handlebar mount is the only option.

Title: Mirrors
Post by: FredHiltz on October 29, 2006, 06:51:47 am
Peter Campbell wrote: With the glasses mount I have had trouble getting mine to fit all of my glasses. Sometimes the stems are too thick and I can't attach the mirror.

Good point. If some of your temples are fat and some are wire-type, you would need two Chuck Harris type mirrors.


Title: Mirrors
Post by: cyclesafe on October 31, 2006, 08:30:50 am
Helmet  mirrors?  Tried them, don't like 'em.  I spend too much time squinting at the little mirror and fiddling with it.  I also tend to forget about what's in front of me.  Same with eyeglass mirrors.  Maybe I am so bad at using these mirrors because I wear glasses to correct a -12 diopter in both eyes (coke bottles).  No, laser surgery (not possible) and contacts (don't want something floating on my eye) are not options (for me).

I haven't tried road bar mounted mirrors because I have observed them falling off or being so subject to vibration as to be useless.  Also, my arms, when using the usual road bar hand positions, seem to block the mirror from any place I might reasonably mount it.  Finally, the view from tube-mounted mirrors (under-the-leg views) will be blocked by my rear panniers.

Before brifters there was a mirror that bolted on the brake levers.  This position would seem ideal, but I am agast at the idea of drilling holes into my STI Ultegras.  Besides, this mirror has been discontinued (Mirrcycle).

After searching the web, I found the 3rd Eye which has a glass convex lens that mounts in the bar end.  I assume that it could then be adjusted for road bars...  Anyone have experience with the 3rd Eye?  

Title: Mirrors
Post by: BC on November 07, 2006, 11:56:13 pm
I used to use the Blackburn mirror which velcro-ed around the STI hood, but it vibrated horribly. I have switched to a StarCycle mirror, sold by Peter White Cycles in New Hampshire. They have a choice of mounting options, a surprisingly large field of view for a small mirror, and are practically vibration-free. I swear by mine and wouldn't leave home without it!

Title: Mirrors
Post by: giantrider on November 08, 2006, 02:19:58 am
several years ago, an old timer loaned me a mirror that actually hooked to your hand with a strap (elastic-I think)This mirror worked very well and could be "aimed" with some hand movement.Does anyone know if anyone still makes this? Would love to get one. Greg

Title: Mirrors
Post by: JayH on November 08, 2006, 12:04:32 pm
I use the "Take-a-Look" brand of mirrors that attaches to my sunglasses (Smith Sliders with multiple tint lenses). Right now since it's fall/winter here in the northeast I am using clear lenses, but usually in the summer, I'll use 15% transmission persimmon colored lenses.

You will have to see whether the mirror fits your sunglasses as it is probably picky in it's application but I love mine and feel naked without it. I commute with it as well as use it when touring.


Title: Mirrors
Post by: fleutz on November 13, 2006, 10:51:33 pm
I currently use a Chuck Harris design mirror it's a hell of lot better than a blackburn helmet mirror. I like because it doesn't move like that other mirror and works on all helmets. Besides where are you going to find one with your club's logo ?

And That's All There Is !
Title: Mirrors
Post by: TGYoung on November 17, 2006, 06:54:57 pm
>After searching the web, I found the 3rd Eye which has
>a glass convex lens that mounts in the bar end.  I
>assume that it could then be adjusted for road bars...
>Anyone have experience with the 3rd Eye?


I've used the 3rd Eye mirror for several years after trying, and giving up on, other styles.  It mounts fine in drop bars with the mirror below the bars themselves.  I usually adjust it so I can see a slight bit of my left leg as a point of reference.

Title: Mirrors
Post by: tofubicycle on November 17, 2006, 09:05:55 pm
I personally do not prefer mirrors though I have ridden with both the barend and the helmet mount varieties. My suggestion to people who do find mirrors helpful is that they take care not to rely exclusively on the mirror when it comes to checking behind you. I my experiences and in talking with others I have come to feel that this is a bad habit which could lead to the occassional bad situation. Consider using the mirror to help determine whether or not you need to look directly behind you. If you see something approaching in your mirror, it's worth your while to check your front and then take a rela look behind you.

Just a thought.

......... __ o
......(O) (O)...........
i'd rather be biking.
Title: Mirrors
Post by: Sailariel on November 18, 2006, 05:44:56 pm
The mirror I have on my road bike is really a mirror designed for hybrids. It fits into the bar end, has an arm about 4" long that orients 90 degrees down from the handlebar. and is then adjustable side to side. Yhe 4" arm moves forward and back for adjustment. I wish I could remember the brand- Delta comes to mind. After riding motorcycles from 1958 to 1982, I have gotten quite used to mirrors. Regards, Alex

Title: Mirrors
Post by: bktourer1 on February 20, 2007, 08:19:32 am
Take a look at teh Zefal "SPY" mirror
good for those with trekking bars


Title: Mirrors
Post by: DaveB on February 20, 2007, 10:05:27 am
I've used the 3rd Eye mirror for several years after trying, and giving up on, other styles.  It mounts fine in drop bars with the mirror below the bars themselves.  I usually adjust it so I can see a slight bit of my left leg as a point of reference.

Another vote for the Third Eye mirror.  It's really best suited to drop bars but gives a wide and stable view.  The only real disqualifier is if you use barcon shifters.

I've also tried all the alternatives; helmet mounts, glasses mounts, etc. and the Third Eye is the only one I use.  

Title: Mirrors
Post by: dombrosk on February 24, 2007, 02:37:50 pm
For bar end mirrors, I'm very happy with my "Mountain Mirrycle" --- it folds up against my handlebar to get out of the way. and is very easy to install.

Title: Mirrors
Post by: Sailariel on March 01, 2007, 01:25:04 pm
Well I managed to break my mirror on my road bike, and now will have bad luck. Went back to the Blacburn mirror with the velcro fastening system on the hoods. I like the position of the mirror because I can see it when I use my aero bars--which is about 70% of the time I ride.

Title: Mirrors
Post by: WesternFlyer on May 28, 2007, 04:11:41 am
I use a 3rd Eye bar end mirror.  It is cheap, has good optical qualities and I can see it clearly no matter where my hands are on my drop handlebars.  Be sure to tighten the nut and screw holding the mirror to the bar end plug after it is adjusted or it can rattle loose.

I have had bad luck with helmet and glasses mirrors.  They have lasted from 7 days to 2 hours before getting lost or broken!

Here looking to the at the road behind,

Western Flyer

Western Flyer
Title: Mirrors
Post by: sps7 on May 28, 2007, 05:53:01 pm
Peter, in 1983 or 1984 I bought a Rhode Gear handlebar mirror that attachs snugly with a velcro band to the brake lever hood. I still have it and use it in every ride. I love it and would always want a mirror like this one if I lost this one. Unfortunately, some time after I bought my Rhode Gear mirror, Blackburn or Bell bought Rhode Gear and discontinued this great mirror which has a metal arm and a nice, slightly convex glass mirror. Sadly, the velcro band is wearing out but still keeps the mirror in place. I sent an email message to Bell the other day to ask if they acquired Rhode Gear parts and items when they (Bell) bought that company many years ago. Maybe I can get from Bell a replacement for the velcro band from old Rhode Gear stock on some Bell shelf or in some drawer somewhere.
Title: Mirrors
Post by: RussellSeaton on June 01, 2007, 01:09:04 pm
For the velcro band for the old Rhode Gear brake hood mirror, you can use a wide pump strap.  The one at Nashbar should work fine if you cut off the foam piece sewn into it.  I used the metal Rhode Gear mirror for many years and like it a lot.  It prevented you from laying the bike down on the non drive side so you had to find something to lean the bike against.  And when the bike fell over, the metal arm got bent.  Able to bend it back though.  It was retired when I bought a new bike with Ergo and the bracket does not fit on Ergo levers.  Rhode Gear mirror was on the touring bike with regular brake hoods and bar ends.  So I had to get the Take A Look sunglass mounted mirror for the Ergo bike.  Once I tried the Take A Look, I never used the Rhode Gear mirror again even on the bike with normal brake hoods and bar end shifters.  The Take A Look was better.

Title: Mirrors
Post by: gponce101 on June 13, 2007, 03:56:04 pm
Been using a Third Eye for a couple years and won't leave home without it.
Don't have any issues with it vibrating out of place etc.

Title: Mirrors
Post by: James on June 17, 2007, 01:48:17 am
Just my opinion, any mirror takes some getting used to. I used one that replaced a handle bar plug on the end of my drop bars, it worked fine. I liked the advanced warning of approaching trucks it gave me on my trans-am tour.  One word of warning, as with other vehicles, mirrors have a blind spot. They are NOT a replacement for looking over your shoulder before pulling out into the middle of a lane to execute a turn.