This guide has been written by cycling review expert Alex Bristol
Last Updated on
Last Updated on
Bike bells aren’t specifically required by law everywhere, but in any case, unless you’re a track cyclist, getting yourself one would be wise for other road users’ safety and yours. Purchasing and installing a bell on your bike isn’t exactly a hard task, at most you’re required to tighten a screw. On the other hand, you may want to pay a little attention to where you’re going to place it. If you have a road bike this is even more complicated because of the sometimes complicated shape of the handlebar.
As a general rule, bike bells are placed on the opposite side of the front brake, to allow the cyclist to keep a firm grip on it while ringing their bell with their other hand.
You should also be able to reach the bell lever with your thumb without moving your hand from where it’s naturally placed as you ride. It wouldn’t be wise to move your hand from brakes and gear right when you’re getting close to an obstacle. Here’s where things get complicated for road bikers.
What about road bikes?
When you’re riding a road bike your hands are on the horns of your road handlebar for most of the time. Your brakes and gear are there too, so placing your bell anywhere else has no sense. It could be possibly dangerous actually!
You should be able to find a way to place the bell in a way that allows you to push your thumb on the lever while your hand is on the horn. Some install their bells on the horn itself with its lever up, so that you can push it down with the external side of your thumb. Electric bells can be the best solution for road bikes, because the body of the bell (the source of the sound) and the control buttons are separated, so you can mount the body of the bell wherever you want and the controller, which is usually very small, can be easily placed close to your thumb. On the contrary, installing Airzound horns, although they’re useful when you’re riding at top speed on the road for they are as loud as a car horn, can be a problem. Because of their shape and dimension, it’s almost impossible to place them on the horns. There are bells, like trigger bells, that are specifically designed for road bikes. Not only they’re small and they can be placed easily on the horn, but they are designed to allow your thumb to reach the lever from any position that your hand may have on the handlebar during the ride.
It’s definitely not impossible to place a bell on your road bike. More than a screwdriver, though, your key tool should be patience, plus some attention to ensure that you are not going to loosen your grip on your handlebar while ringing your bell.
1. Put A Bell On Your Fast Bike – Article by Bicycling