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Radar protection - for the bike...

  1. #1
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    Radar protection - for the bike...


    Fellow Riders,

    I have recently read and responded to questions and conversations centered on radar protection on 2 other sites. Because this is an important topic, I wanted to share a few of the things I've learned during my recent search for a good set up for my R1.

    Following is the text of one of my recent messages, and it pretty much spells out the good sites to help with this issue. Please let me know if there is anything else I should add or provide. Here's to never getting another speeding ticket on a bike!

    I've just gone through much trial & error getting my radar setup for my bikes just right. This included looking at a multitude of mounting and wiring systems, and several detectors. I purchased, and used the Valentine 1 AND the Escort 8500 - together at the same time for more than a week. I pretty much arrived at the same conclusion you will find on www.radartest.com To make this whole topic REALLY easy on you - hurry over to www.motorcycleradar.com and solve your issues in ONE STOP! Larry is a great guy there, and I have personally purchased from him, and met and discussed the topic with him at length. That site is all ANYONE needs to know about radar protection for bikes...they have top of the line detectors, mounting kits, and the ALL IMPORTANT Radar Screamer!

    Now, if you want to hear the rest of the story...

    First things first: You need a great detector. The Escort 8500 is the best you can buy IMHO (I also own a Valentine 1 that is only a few months old). I bought both detectors, and put them in opposite corners of my car windshield. Then, I drove with them for a week. The Escort 8500 KICKED on the V1 on all but the X band radar (meaningless). Also, the Escort gave fewer "false alarms", and the directional arrows that the V1 tries to sell everyone on - are useless. How many people do you know who have gotten a ticket by a cop who uses radar from BEHIND? Unlikely - and rare at best. There is a great article on this fallacy on www.radartest.com . By the way, I have had both of these detectors mounted on my bikes. The V1 requires TWO outboard components to run (along with more wires), and is $150 more expensive after you are completely installed - 50% more! I don't believe it's worth it for a system that is "as good" or in some instances "not as good". For the real story on these two units - go to www.radartest.com and see for yourself.

    Next: You need a quality mounting system. Larry at the site above can offer you many options - he sells the Stem Stands products. If you need something custom, try www.stemstand.com. The guy who runs that place - Mike Lee - was EXCELLENT at fabricating a CUSTOM mount for my R1. It connects to the inside bolt of the mirror fitting, and it fits perfect. There is also http://www.saeng.com which may be able to offer a solution if Mike doesn't have something for you. They are more expensive though...in most instances.

    Finally: YOU NEED TO HEAR THE WARNING! Get yourself a RADAR SCREAMER! Most people have no idea what this is, but I (and many of my riding partners) use it. It is a device that is powered through a "switched" electrical source on your bike (mine is wired mine into the high beam switch - so I can check it underway - pretty cool). As Randy said above - Chuck is the resident electrical wizard if you have further wiring questions / needs. The system is activated by the detector, and emits a LOUD noise from a piezo speaker that you can hear with a helmet on, earplugs in, and at XXX speeds (not that I would know firsthand). Anyway, this SCREAMER unit is the excellent! It gets rid of all the silly wires, and all the other nonsense. All you have to be able to do once you start your bike, is HEAR! No watching LED readouts, or anything else - get one for $100 - you will be happy you did.

    Now, all that said, you must be smart about the process of SCANNING while you ride too (using your eyes, and other decoys as protection as well). However, if you are willing to spend around $400 - $500, you can have an AWESOME radar protection unit that will pay for itself VERY quickly.

    Do yourself a favor and visit www.motorcycleradar.com - good luck!

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    cRa1g
    2000 YZF-R1
    1999 Ducati 996 S
    1999 YZF-R6 (race)

  2. #2
    Administrator Frankenstein's Avatar
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    Radar protection - for the bike...

    Most 'saves' when I'm riding are with my eyes...and not the radar detector. Often I see the police car from pretty obscene distances. Being observant is the
    And now a few rebutes in defense of the V1....

    The arrows being useless: Well, indeed I've had radar come at me from behind. It's also nice since lots of cops just tool around with their guns on, so I know it if they're creeping up on me. In that exact scenario, the V1 has saved me no less than 5 times in almost 2 years.

    X band is meaningless?: It just so happens that I've had increasingly more frequent encounters with officers that are using x band. Two years ago, I'd never even give the x-band alert a second though...and I'd keep on going....BUT some of them ARE using x band, so beware!

    As for sensitivity....I've never run it on anything but 'L', which as you know is the highest filter setting on the unit...and this includes road trips to Niagara Falls, North Carolina, New Jersey, daily drives to work, and every MC ride I've been on in almost 2 years. Never once have I said 'damn, I wish this thing would let me know sooner when there's a radar signal'. Usually I know a mile or so in advance if the road is reasonably straight.

    I find that on the 'L' setting (maybe that really means loser? Hell...it is on my bike, right? ) ....that false alarms are few and far between, with the exception of every shopping plaza in the country (damn them and their radar-activated auto-opening doors!!! DAMN THEM!!!).

    You're right though, it's pricey, requires extra parts to use on the m/c (if you want an external speaker such as the Radar Screamer, or headphones).

    I've never used the 2500, but the V1 performs so well for me that I don't think I'll be buying another detector anytime soon.

    Ok, defensive rant over (joking, I have NO issues with the fact that he THINKS he's got a better detector than me!!! LOL!!!...again, joking folks.)

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  3. #3
    Angry Gumball RandyO's Avatar
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    Radar protection - for the bike...

    I agree with you Josh, the extra features of the V-1 are worthwhile, especially for someone like myself who can't spot cops a long way off, the pointer is very helpful, and the rear sensor, well, it tells you when its ok to TWIST THE THROTTLE again

    Really, unless your riding a Busa @ 193mph why do you really need to know about LEO's that are 3 miles out, I find that even at my SV's top speed (125-130)I can easily slow to the speed limit just by rolling off the throttle in plenty of time

    [Edited on 8/21/01 by RandyO]

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    RandyO
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  4. #4
    Member Chuck's Avatar
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    Radar protection - for the bike...

    Re: Val 1 settings

    "A" is all inclusive coverage and will alert you to basically every alarm within sensory range. Including every door opener and building alarm that exists.

    large "L" will alert you if it even "thinks" it is a cop. Bt will

    Small "L" will only go of if the unit is ABSOLUTELY SURE it is a cop. This is somewhat risky I think. You won't get false alarms, but a cop might slip past it too.

    I use Large "L" and I've disabled the laser. Few areas use laser (except cities, Worcester does, but often they run Ka, which is the most common police radar) and laser is sensitive to ignition noise beyond 2200 micro farads.

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  5. #5
    Administrator Frankenstein's Avatar
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    Radar protection - for the bike...

    I think you've got the large and small l's mixed up. On small L it goes off all the time, but stays in mute mode until the signal reaches a certain strength. On large L it doesn't go off unless it's got a strong signal.

    I've never used mine on anything but L (large), and it still hasn't let me down.

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  6. #6
    Angry Gumball RandyO's Avatar
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    Radar protection - for the bike...

    I even get false alarms with at the large L setting, but it only goes off if the offending building is real close to the road, and I usually only see the side arrow.

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    RandyO
    IBA#9560
    A man with a gun is a citizen
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  7. #7
    Administrator Frankenstein's Avatar
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    Radar protection - for the bike...

    Likewise, I certainly wasn't saying it never gives false alarms, but it goes off much less if it ignores weaker signals.

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  8. #8
    Member Chuck's Avatar
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    Radar protection - for the bike...

    That last post was by me. forgot to add my name when cutting nad pasting from Val1's site.

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  9. #9
    Angry Gumball RandyO's Avatar
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    Radar protection - for the bike...

    "and it knows that K-band bogeys and Instant-on are always threats."

    I am finding that an increasing number of alarm systems produce a K band signal rather than an X band, with the logic set to large L, the most common false alarm is K band, the V-1 logic does a good job with X band

    I also occasionally get enough of a power surge on damp days as I ride under high voltage power lines to get a false rear lazer alert as well as the ones you get at higher rpms.



    :o

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    RandyO
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    A man without a gun is a subject

  10. #10
    Kosher Assassin Stoneman's Avatar
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    Radar protection - for the bike...

    I'm not a firm believer in radar detectors for the bike. I use my old Beltronics 745i in my Subi, and it's saved my ass countless times. But on the bike I just feel that it's too much to pay attention to. And I'm just not sure that at the speeds we usually travel, I'd have enough time to scrub off enough in time anyway....

    I had the RF hot-wired for it, but I rarely used it. I'll still stick with my method of wishful thinking 'til the time comes that I get fucked hard by a speeding ticket. For what it's worth, I haven't gotten a speeding ticket on a bike since '94. And that was two days after picking up my RF900R. Bastard got me doing 73 in a 35!!

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  11. #11
    Member Chuck's Avatar
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    Radar protection - for the bike...

    You still have to keep your eyes open and maintain a sharp alert for cops, especially those coming the other way, which is the most common sighting.

    I run a Val 1 and radar screamer so it's no distration at all. In fact, most bikes in the group can hear the screamer so they have time to scrub off speed. The cop can hear it too, so sometimes I just turn it to low or off until he passes.

    Every mile per hour you can scrub off is worth $10 in fines and you might be able to scrub off enough not to get tagged at all.

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  12. #12
    Kosher Assassin Stoneman's Avatar
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    Radar protection - for the bike...

    Yeah, but I know this lawyer....

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    Did you grit your teeth and try to look like Clint Fuckin' Eastwood?
    Or did you lisp it all hangfisted like a fuckin' flower?

  13. #13
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    Radar protection - for the bike...

    Unfortunately, that lawyer isn't licensed to practice in the state of Vermont.

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    cRa1g
    2000 YZF-R1
    1999 Ducati 996 S
    1999 YZF-R6 (race)

  14. #14
    Kosher Assassin Stoneman's Avatar
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    Radar protection - for the bike...

    Hi, I'm attorney James Sokolov. The insurance companies have lawyers working on their side, shouldn't you?

    Bwaaaa haaaa haaa!!!

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  15. #15
    Administrator Frankenstein's Avatar
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    Radar protection - for the bike...

    Interesting......

    http://www.valentine1.com/lab/V1Hater.asp

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