Leave it to the treacherous roads and drivers of Boston to inspire somebody to create a bicycle horn that sounds like a car horn—and is just as loud.
That somebody is Jonathan Lansey, who invented the Loud Bicycle Horn, a 23-ounce decibel-pumping unit that mounts to your bike tube just below the handlebars and can be thumb-activated while braking simultaneously. Per product specs, it combines two tones (~420 Hz and ~500 Hz) to mimic the horn sound of a compact car and outputs it at 112 decibels. That's equivalent to a typical car (or a loud rock concert).
In busy urban riding areas—such as Lansey's home streets of Boston—the potential value of this is clear. As he points out with several POV examples from his successful Kickstarter promo video (below), drivers immediately and instinctively respond to the sound of a car horn. For example, a blast of the horn is an effective way to alert (and stop) drivers blindly pulling out into your line.
The Loud Bicycle Horn attaches to the bike tube with some security-enabled attachment system (you need a special included tool to attach or loosen). A plug-in rechargeable battery provides ample honkage for roughly two months or more. And yes, it's legal for bicycles to honk like cars.
Seems reasonably priced at $95. As bike accessories go, especially one that might save your life, it's worth considering, especially if you ride a high-traffic route. If that's not where you ride, however, a Loud Bicycle Horn could quickly become overkill.
“Equipped” is an AMC Outdoors blog, written by Matt Heid.
Labels: Bicycles, Cycling, Safety