30 votes
Accepted

Is turning head to look backwards while riding a bike a safe and recommended technique?

Yes - looking behind you (briefly) is a perfectly good way to find out what's there. The dangers of not-looking-behind are much higher than a brief interruption of looking forward. You're right that ...
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  • 96.5k
14 votes

Is turning head to look backwards while riding a bike a safe and recommended technique?

You need to be able to check over your shoulder. It will get easier with practice. Taking your points in order: You shouldn't ever need to signal which side to pass you - the passing side is defined ...
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  • 45.1k
11 votes

Where to mount a headlight if the handlebar is obscured by a basket

Something like this accessory is what you need: Can be fitted onto wired or meshed bicycle baskets. This specific model is made by the "Rixen & Kaul" and can be found in many online shops. E.g. ...
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11 votes

Reflective tape for polyester rain jacket

I think you run the risk of ruining your jacket by doing anything with it with heat or stickers. Instead I would suggest adding passive reflective materials to your kit. 3M has a reflective spray ...
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  • 96.5k
8 votes

Conceptual: Bike Lights built into Grips

You would be entering in a very busy market with no obvious advantages. Let's look at the two types of LEDs that you might use: If you're using inexpensive and low-power 5050 LEDs (15 lumens@350mW; ...
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  • 28.4k
8 votes
Accepted

How should I configure my tail-lights?

I run The Bike Light Database (which started from a series of blog posts on this very Stack Exchange site). The Cygolite Hotshot and the NiteRider Solas are actually two of my top recommended lights, ...
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  • 3,763
7 votes

When riding with a single pannier, does it matter which side it's on?

I wasn't aware of a rule for this, but I would hang a single pannier on left because it's the non-drive side of the bike. I doubt it matters though. When I was buying a new rear wheel a few months ...
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  • 301
7 votes

What's a safer alternative to a flag for marking special bikes?

Some local recumbent users have a different style flag on their bikes rather than the rectangle or the pennant. I couldn't find a photo online, but the flag is about a 1~1.5 meters tall, and the poll ...
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  • 2,301
6 votes

When riding with a single pannier, does it matter which side it's on?

I'm primarily a daytime rider; if I'm riding with two panniers I mount the one on the left first because that is the side with my kickstand, and putting weight on the left (kickstand) side of the bike ...
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6 votes

How can I prevent glasses fogging when cycling in the cold with face covered

What you are looking for is a product that covers your face (to keep it warm) seals along the upper edge to your face (to keep breath from leaking up under your glasses) and uses a design to direct ...
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  • 9,858
6 votes

Is turning head to look backwards while riding a bike a safe and recommended technique?

Whether I was taught this along the line or mimicking someone I saw doing this, my way of looking behind--"checking my 6"--when riding is down and thru my (usually) left arm. It's generally ...
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  • 6,868
6 votes

Is turning head to look backwards while riding a bike a safe and recommended technique?

Looking over your shoulder before manoeuvering was mandatory in the road test for motorbikes and I would guess still is. I always do it whether on bicycle, motorbike or in car and it has saved me ...
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  • 161
5 votes
Accepted

Screwing reflectors to pedals - what washers do I need, and where?

The "normal" stacking order for those would be Reflector Pedal body Flat washer Spring washer Nut The flat washer spreads the load, and the spring washer is supposed ...
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  • 96.5k
5 votes

Where to mount a headlight if the handlebar is obscured by a basket

Attach a pipe or pole to the basket and hey presto! Another "handlebar"! Photos from Bike Hacks contributors:
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  • 1,329
5 votes

Is turning head to look backwards while riding a bike a safe and recommended technique?

It's essential to master the last-second "lifesaver" visual check over your shoulder before turning across traffic (that includes a check for "undertaking" cyclists) - mirrors have ...
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  • 369
5 votes

Reflective tape for polyester rain jacket

Expanding on my comments, and in addition to AndyP's mention of a hi-vis vest I'd look into the following hi-vis (fluorescent and reflective) accessories, some of which can also be illuminated: ...
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  • 45.1k
5 votes

Reflective tape for polyester rain jacket

Scotchlite is the material usually used to add reflective elements to clothing. You can get it in tape form. I've used it to add reflective dots to some of my bike gear. It sticks pretty well, it's ...
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  • 23.8k
5 votes
Accepted

Safety vest: is an all-reflective one fine?

I think your main problem will be when it’s not dark. I’ve noticed with my Castelli Gabba jersey which is a really bright fluorescent yellow that people notice me much earlier at intersections or when ...
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  • 19.2k
4 votes

When riding with a single pannier, does it matter which side it's on?

Most people have their single pannier on the left side for balance reasons because they are using single-leg kick-stands, which usually mount on the non-drive-side. I have a double-leg kickstand so ...
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  • 28.4k
4 votes
Accepted

Does a highly visible frame colour improve safety significantly?

It wouldn’t make much difference from the rear. All a driver could see from the rear is the top of your seat stays, which aren’t very large. Same goes for the front. From the side, it would make more ...
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  • 10.5k
4 votes

Screwing reflectors to pedals - what washers do I need, and where?

Danger danger! I have used those reflectors and they are a piece of crap. The failure mode is the plastic breaking. Your shoes will damage them in no time. I'd expect 2000 km use out of them. Then you'...
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  • 11.6k
4 votes

Reflective tape for polyester rain jacket

Gore have a support page that mentions ironing as a method to reactivate DWR treatments on SOME of their products. But this is with a towel placed between so that you are not applying heat directly. ...
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  • 12.7k
4 votes

Reflective tape for polyester rain jacket

I think I have the same jacket :) I put on a thrifted orange running vest that has reflective properties. I agree about the gloves/arms needing something to signal turns at night. My coldest weather ...
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3 votes

How can I prevent glasses fogging when cycling in the cold with face covered

Glasses fogging is constant problem in cold weather... the good news we are in the midst of a trend towards more cold weather riding and products are starting to come to market to reflect that trend.. ...
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  • 1,418
3 votes

Does a highly visible frame colour improve safety significantly?

I found a nice product that is a roll of shiny black tape that reflects very brightly at night and would just look like a faint black stripe on your black frame when not reflecting. It works during ...
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  • 1,292
3 votes
Accepted

What's a safer alternative to a flag for marking special bikes?

Despite editing this down I could make it into a comment (plus:pictures), so here are some ideas: At the very least 1 or more streamer (like wide ribbons) would be less likely to snag than a large ...
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  • 45.1k
3 votes

What's a safer alternative to a flag for marking special bikes?

Print t shirts. It's what festivals and bands do, and it's cheap. If you want them to stand out pick an unusual colour, but regardless, print something big on the back and front. If you're already ...
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  • 23k
3 votes

Is turning head to look backwards while riding a bike a safe and recommended technique?

A few points not yet covered: Mirrors can have blind spots Just like a car's mirrors, any mirror you use on a bicycle can have blind spots. You'll have to turn your head to check those. Mirrors can ...
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  • 8,399
3 votes

Is turning head to look backwards while riding a bike a safe and recommended technique?

Mirrors can be used to address this problem. My past experience with mirrors was not among the best. The first mirror I tried long time ago was mounted on a long rod, sensitive to vibration to degree ...
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  • 3,422
2 votes

Safety vests: Yellow vs. Orange?

You have to understand this: the purpose of a safety vest is to set yourself apart from an environment. So logically speaking, you can buy both : one for in autumn, yellow, since most leafs are ...
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