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bike bell
busy city streets
bicycle bells
bicycle bell
road bikes
lever arms
wrong choice
road bike
cyclists
2 Quick Questions Before Making Your First Bike Bell Purchase
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2 Quick Questions Before Making Your First Bike Bell Purchase

Though the bike bell is a simple device, there are a few considerations you should keep in mind before making your first purchase. Most bike bells are returned for two reasons: they aren't loud enough or they don't fit the handlebar they are supposed to be mounted on.

Here are two quick questions to answer before making a selection:

  • Where do you ride?
  • What kind of bike do you ride?

Answering these questions will help you to zero in on the right bicycle bell for your needs.

Where Do You Ride?

Do you ride on busy city streets with other cyclists and cars? Do you ride on shared use paths, having to share the trail with pedestrians? Both of these settings require a bell that has a loud sound that can successfully announce your presence to other people. All bike bells are not created equal. Some make the tiniest of dings when rang, making them useless in places where being heard is vitally important. Others make loud resounding rings that carry and linger after being rung. Look for bells that have spring loaded external lever arms. These tend to produce the loudest rings. Keep in mind that these bicycle bells can be larger than others and consequently take up more handlebar "real estate" when mounted. Make sure you have room to mount your bell before making this selection.

What Kind of Bike Do You Ride?

Do you ride a road bike? Or a mountain bike? Typically road bikes have larger diameter handlebars. When you are making your first purchase, make sure to pay attention to the mount provided with the bike bell. Many times they are smaller than what you need, particularly with road bikes. Another overlooked factor that influences bicycle bell selection: what are the road conditions where you ride? If, like me, you are an avid mountain biker, the trails are rough and bumpy. I failed to take this into consideration when I made my first purchase. The first time out on the trail told me I had made the wrong choice, as the bell rang with every rock and root I hit. If you are an off road rider, make sure you give your potential purchase a good shaking to make sure it only rings when you want it to ring.

The choices are vast these days when it comes to bicycle bells . It's easy to get carried away with all the bright colors and eye catching designs. While it's perfectly acceptable to buy a bell based solely on it's look, I would encourage you to take the above mentioned factors into consideration first. Knowing how loud you need your bell to be and the diameter of your handlebars first - you will be less likely to have to return it because it doesn't suit your needs.


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