Topics

Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry!


Brian Louis
 

I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

- Brian Louis


Greg Crowther
 

Brian,

I have had the same unit for the last year. I love it and agree with your observations. Didn’t think about pairing it with another riders Garmin. I also have and recommend the Varia headlight. Super bright. Syncs with the Garmin and auto adjusts Its mode if set.

Greg Crowther 


On Jun 24, 2020, at 3:27 PM, Brian Louis via groups.io <chicagorc@...> wrote:


I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

- Brian Louis


Sheri Rosenbaum
 

Garmin sent me both the Varia RTL515 (radar with taillight) and the RVR315 (radar w/o taillight) to test and review for RBR. I haven't been able to install it yet because the bands that came with the mount wont fit my seat post (too short). Got ahold of Garmin support today and they have me looping two bands together which I'll try after work. 

You do need to make sure you have enough room on your seat post to mount the radar correctly. I have a saddlebag that sits pretty low so not much room. 

As far as pairing one radar with multiple Garmins, I believe it is unlimited, just proximity would be the issue. So if the person with the radar is too far off the back or surges too far ahead, then connections would be lost. 

The Varia comes with three mounts so if you have an aero seatpost or tri bike it should fit. Again clearance is the major factor.

Nice to hear your feedback.
Sheri


From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io <general@BBC-Bike.groups.io> on behalf of Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:26 AM
To: BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry!
 
I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

- Brian Louis


David Holtermann
 

I completely agree with everything Brian wrote here. I have the Varia RTL510, the immediate predecessor model, but the function is very similar. The set up and pairing process was very easy. I've been riding with it for about three weeks and it works exactly as described. I am pretty good at hearing cars behind me but this provides a very welcome alert when your attention starts to drift. I am also happy to report no false negatives - it has spotted every vehicle that has overtaken me.

Depending on where you buy it, the cost is $150 - $200, by the way - not much money for a big safety payoff.

David Holtermann



On Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 3:27 PM Brian Louis <chicagorc@...> wrote:
I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

- Brian Louis


Sean Malia
 

I’ve had mine for a while & agree it works great- the ability to recognize approaching traffic as riders not cars is a bit hit/miss.  Perhaps in my case I’m getting passed so quickly it doesn’t have time to tell the difference :-)

Sean Malia

Please excuse typos

On Jun 24, 2020, at 3:39 PM, Sheri Rosenbaum <luv2bike80@...> wrote:


Garmin sent me both the Varia RTL515 (radar with taillight) and the RVR315 (radar w/o taillight) to test and review for RBR. I haven't been able to install it yet because the bands that came with the mount wont fit my seat post (too short). Got ahold of Garmin support today and they have me looping two bands together which I'll try after work. 

You do need to make sure you have enough room on your seat post to mount the radar correctly. I have a saddlebag that sits pretty low so not much room. 

As far as pairing one radar with multiple Garmins, I believe it is unlimited, just proximity would be the issue. So if the person with the radar is too far off the back or surges too far ahead, then connections would be lost. 

The Varia comes with three mounts so if you have an aero seatpost or tri bike it should fit. Again clearance is the major factor.

Nice to hear your feedback.
Sheri


From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io <general@BBC-Bike.groups.io> on behalf of Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:26 AM
To: BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry!
 
I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

- Brian Louis


Tom Cramer
 

I have been using mine for a few years, just recently had noticed the software update that now shows the green and red lines along with an Audible beep. I didn’t know others can pair to it, that is good info Brian! Maybe when we can ride in a group again, those who have it can pair with others that don’t.

 

Tom Cramer

 

 

From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io [mailto:general@BBC-Bike.groups.io] On Behalf Of David Holtermann
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 3:43 PM
To: Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Cc: BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry! [EXTERNAL EMAIL - CAUTION]

 

I completely agree with everything Brian wrote here. I have the Varia RTL510, the immediate predecessor model, but the function is very similar. The set up and pairing process was very easy. I've been riding with it for about three weeks and it works exactly as described. I am pretty good at hearing cars behind me but this provides a very welcome alert when your attention starts to drift. I am also happy to report no false negatives - it has spotted every vehicle that has overtaken me.

 

Depending on where you buy it, the cost is $150 - $200, by the way - not much money for a big safety payoff.

 

David Holtermann

 

 

 

On Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 3:27 PM Brian Louis <chicagorc@...> wrote:

I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

 

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

 

- Brian Louis


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Lena Chon
 

Brian,
I didn’t know you can pair it with another riders. That’s a motivation to stay tight in the pace line!  I had the experience of riding behind Mark and it was awesome

Interesting about what Sheri said with clearance. That may mean a shorter person like me may not be able to use it. I hardly have space for tail light, unless I move my light down to the fork.

Thank you for sharing,
Lena


On Jun 24, 2020, at 3:39 PM, Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...> wrote:


Garmin sent me both the Varia RTL515 (radar with taillight) and the RVR315 (radar w/o taillight) to test and review for RBR. I haven't been able to install it yet because the bands that came with the mount wont fit my seat post (too short). Got ahold of Garmin support today and they have me looping two bands together which I'll try after work. 

You do need to make sure you have enough room on your seat post to mount the radar correctly. I have a saddlebag that sits pretty low so not much room. 

As far as pairing one radar with multiple Garmins, I believe it is unlimited, just proximity would be the issue. So if the person with the radar is too far off the back or surges too far ahead, then connections would be lost. 

The Varia comes with three mounts so if you have an aero seatpost or tri bike it should fit. Again clearance is the major factor.

Nice to hear your feedback.
Sheri


From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io <general@BBC-Bike.groups.io> on behalf of Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:26 AM
To: BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry!
 
I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

- Brian Louis


Tom Craig
 

I know that this isn’t nearly as cool, but I think this does all of that and more. 😉



On Jun 24, 2020, at 7:48 PM, Lena Chon via groups.io <lmnchon@...> wrote:

Brian,
I didn’t know you can pair it with another riders. That’s a motivation to stay tight in the pace line!  I had the experience of riding behind Mark and it was awesome

Interesting about what Sheri said with clearance. That may mean a shorter person like me may not be able to use it. I hardly have space for tail light, unless I move my light down to the fork.

Thank you for sharing,
Lena


On Jun 24, 2020, at 3:39 PM, Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...> wrote:


Garmin sent me both the Varia RTL515 (radar with taillight) and the RVR315 (radar w/o taillight) to test and review for RBR. I haven't been able to install it yet because the bands that came with the mount wont fit my seat post (too short). Got ahold of Garmin support today and they have me looping two bands together which I'll try after work. 

You do need to make sure you have enough room on your seat post to mount the radar correctly. I have a saddlebag that sits pretty low so not much room. 

As far as pairing one radar with multiple Garmins, I believe it is unlimited, just proximity would be the issue. So if the person with the radar is too far off the back or surges too far ahead, then connections would be lost. 

The Varia comes with three mounts so if you have an aero seatpost or tri bike it should fit. Again clearance is the major factor.

Nice to hear your feedback.
Sheri


From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io <general@BBC-Bike.groups.io> on behalf of Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:26 AM
To: BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry!
 
I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

- Brian Louis


Brian Louis
 

I didn't mention earlier that I started using a frame bag instead of the rear saddle bag. I bought it for longer rides and it worked out great since the radar mounts to the seat post. Plus the frame bag holds way more and is narrow enough that you don't really know it is there. It has been great for longer rides to hold all the nutrition you need, tubes, pump, etc. I didn't have to stuff my jersey pockets full of stuff, it all fit in the frame bag. Village has a few different ones, I bought the Black Point Macropod and love it. 


On Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 7:48 PM Lena Chon <lmnchon@...> wrote:
Brian,
I didn’t know you can pair it with another riders. That’s a motivation to stay tight in the pace line!  I had the experience of riding behind Mark and it was awesome

Interesting about what Sheri said with clearance. That may mean a shorter person like me may not be able to use it. I hardly have space for tail light, unless I move my light down to the fork.

Thank you for sharing,
Lena


On Jun 24, 2020, at 3:39 PM, Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...> wrote:


Garmin sent me both the Varia RTL515 (radar with taillight) and the RVR315 (radar w/o taillight) to test and review for RBR. I haven't been able to install it yet because the bands that came with the mount wont fit my seat post (too short). Got ahold of Garmin support today and they have me looping two bands together which I'll try after work. 

You do need to make sure you have enough room on your seat post to mount the radar correctly. I have a saddlebag that sits pretty low so not much room. 

As far as pairing one radar with multiple Garmins, I believe it is unlimited, just proximity would be the issue. So if the person with the radar is too far off the back or surges too far ahead, then connections would be lost. 

The Varia comes with three mounts so if you have an aero seatpost or tri bike it should fit. Again clearance is the major factor.

Nice to hear your feedback.
Sheri


From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io <general@BBC-Bike.groups.io> on behalf of Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:26 AM
To: BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry!
 
I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

- Brian Louis


Tom Craig
 

But seriously...

I'm not sure why we are still so averse to riding with mirrors. Everything else on the road is required to have one and we are THE MOST at-risk. We aren't professional riders with cleared roads, so why wouldn't we want to see what's coming up from behind? During every group ride, I see someone (or multiple someones) drift out to the middle of the lane unaware of cars behind them who have to swerve farther into the oncoming lane than they should have to. I don't see 100% of the cars coming up from behind, but I KNOW I'm much more aware of cars than anyone else who is just hoping to hear them and I do my best to announce and warn. If anyone can give me a reason other than "it's not cool or aero", I would love to hear it. Face it-no one else on the road thinks we look cool in all of that spandex except us, and I'm pretty sure it wouldn't make any difference at the speeds we are riding (except for maybe Snitz or Eldrige and a few others). And remember, most of us were too cool to wear helmets once upon a time. Sorry to lecture, but not sorry. The roads are dangerous places for bikes and we do enough risk-taking as it is. Just something to consider.

I'll go away now. 


On Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 9:40 PM Brian Louis <chicagorc@...> wrote:
I didn't mention earlier that I started using a frame bag instead of the rear saddle bag. I bought it for longer rides and it worked out great since the radar mounts to the seat post. Plus the frame bag holds way more and is narrow enough that you don't really know it is there. It has been great for longer rides to hold all the nutrition you need, tubes, pump, etc. I didn't have to stuff my jersey pockets full of stuff, it all fit in the frame bag. Village has a few different ones, I bought the Black Point Macropod and love it. 

On Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 7:48 PM Lena Chon <lmnchon@...> wrote:
Brian,
I didn’t know you can pair it with another riders. That’s a motivation to stay tight in the pace line!  I had the experience of riding behind Mark and it was awesome

Interesting about what Sheri said with clearance. That may mean a shorter person like me may not be able to use it. I hardly have space for tail light, unless I move my light down to the fork.

Thank you for sharing,
Lena


On Jun 24, 2020, at 3:39 PM, Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...> wrote:


Garmin sent me both the Varia RTL515 (radar with taillight) and the RVR315 (radar w/o taillight) to test and review for RBR. I haven't been able to install it yet because the bands that came with the mount wont fit my seat post (too short). Got ahold of Garmin support today and they have me looping two bands together which I'll try after work. 

You do need to make sure you have enough room on your seat post to mount the radar correctly. I have a saddlebag that sits pretty low so not much room. 

As far as pairing one radar with multiple Garmins, I believe it is unlimited, just proximity would be the issue. So if the person with the radar is too far off the back or surges too far ahead, then connections would be lost. 

The Varia comes with three mounts so if you have an aero seatpost or tri bike it should fit. Again clearance is the major factor.

Nice to hear your feedback.
Sheri


From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io <general@BBC-Bike.groups.io> on behalf of Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:26 AM
To: BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry!
 
I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

- Brian Louis



--
Tom Craig
www.tcraigphoto.com
224-627-6330


Tom Cramer
 

Everyone knows the mirror is pointed up at yourself. “You’re so vain”…lol

 

Tom Cramer

From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io [mailto:general@BBC-Bike.groups.io] On Behalf Of Tom Craig
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:11 PM
To: Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Cc: Lena Chon <lmnchon@...>; Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...>; BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry! [EXTERNAL EMAIL - CAUTION]

 

But seriously...

 

I'm not sure why we are still so averse to riding with mirrors. Everything else on the road is required to have one and we are THE MOST at-risk. We aren't professional riders with cleared roads, so why wouldn't we want to see what's coming up from behind? During every group ride, I see someone (or multiple someones) drift out to the middle of the lane unaware of cars behind them who have to swerve farther into the oncoming lane than they should have to. I don't see 100% of the cars coming up from behind, but I KNOW I'm much more aware of cars than anyone else who is just hoping to hear them and I do my best to announce and warn. If anyone can give me a reason other than "it's not cool or aero", I would love to hear it. Face it-no one else on the road thinks we look cool in all of that spandex except us, and I'm pretty sure it wouldn't make any difference at the speeds we are riding (except for maybe Snitz or Eldrige and a few others). And remember, most of us were too cool to wear helmets once upon a time. Sorry to lecture, but not sorry. The roads are dangerous places for bikes and we do enough risk-taking as it is. Just something to consider.

 

I'll go away now. 

 

 

On Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 9:40 PM Brian Louis <chicagorc@...> wrote:

I didn't mention earlier that I started using a frame bag instead of the rear saddle bag. I bought it for longer rides and it worked out great since the radar mounts to the seat post. Plus the frame bag holds way more and is narrow enough that you don't really know it is there. It has been great for longer rides to hold all the nutrition you need, tubes, pump, etc. I didn't have to stuff my jersey pockets full of stuff, it all fit in the frame bag. Village has a few different ones, I bought the Black Point Macropod and love it. 

 

On Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 7:48 PM Lena Chon <lmnchon@...> wrote:

Brian,

I didn’t know you can pair it with another riders. That’s a motivation to stay tight in the pace line!  I had the experience of riding behind Mark and it was awesome

 

Interesting about what Sheri said with clearance. That may mean a shorter person like me may not be able to use it. I hardly have space for tail light, unless I move my light down to the fork.

 

Thank you for sharing,

Lena



On Jun 24, 2020, at 3:39 PM, Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...> wrote:



Garmin sent me both the Varia RTL515 (radar with taillight) and the RVR315 (radar w/o taillight) to test and review for RBR. I haven't been able to install it yet because the bands that came with the mount wont fit my seat post (too short). Got ahold of Garmin support today and they have me looping two bands together which I'll try after work. 

 

You do need to make sure you have enough room on your seat post to mount the radar correctly. I have a saddlebag that sits pretty low so not much room. 

 

As far as pairing one radar with multiple Garmins, I believe it is unlimited, just proximity would be the issue. So if the person with the radar is too far off the back or surges too far ahead, then connections would be lost. 

 

The Varia comes with three mounts so if you have an aero seatpost or tri bike it should fit. Again clearance is the major factor.

 

Nice to hear your feedback.

Sheri

 


From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io <general@BBC-Bike.groups.io> on behalf of Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:26 AM
To: BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry!

 

I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

 

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

 

- Brian Louis


 

--

Tom Craig
www.tcraigphoto.com

224-627-6330


CONFIDENTIALITY NOTICE: The content of this message and any files transmitted with it is a confidential and proprietary business communication, which is solely for the use of the intended recipient(s). Any use, distribution, duplication or disclosure by any other person or entity is strictly prohibited. If you are not an intended recipient or this has been received in error, please notify the sender and immediately delete all copies of this communication.


Jennifer Goldberg
 

I use BOTH the mirror and the radar. I have the old version of the radar and Ive used it for years. Best money Ive ever spent. In my opinion its not an either or- together you get so much more. You get an advanced audible and visual warning without having to avert your eyes, and then you can use the mirror to see what is coming. No one can look at the mirror constantly and the radar doesnt show you exactly whats coming (semi? Pick up truck?) 

There is no sure protection but together I do feel a lot more aware.  

Please excuse any typos from this device!
Jen

On Jun 24, 2020, at 10:14 PM, Tom Cramer <TCramer@...> wrote:



Everyone knows the mirror is pointed up at yourself. “You’re so vain”…lol

 

Tom Crameror 

From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io [mailto:general@BBC-Bike.groups.io] On Behalf Of Tom Craig
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:11 PM
To: Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Cc: Lena Chon <lmnchon@...>; Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...>; BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry! [EXTERNAL EMAIL - CAUTION]

 

But seriously...

 

I'm not sure why we are still so averse to riding with mirrors. Everything else on the road is required to have one and we are THE MOST at-risk. We aren't professional riders with cleared roads, so why wouldn't we want to see what's coming up from behind? During every group ride, I see someone (or multiple someones) drift out to the middle of the lane unaware of cars behind them who have to swerve farther into the oncoming lane than they should have to. I don't see 100% of the cars coming up from behind, but I KNOW I'm much more aware of cars than anyone else who is just hoping to hear them and I do my best to announce and warn. If anyone can give me a reason other than "it's not cool or aero", I would love to hear it. Face it-no one else on the road thinks we look cool in all of that spandex except us, and I'm pretty sure it wouldn't make any difference at the speeds we are riding (except for maybe Snitz or Eldrige and a few others). And remember, most of us were too cool to wear helmets once upon a time. Sorry to lecture, but not sorry. The roads are dangerous places for bikes and we do enough risk-taking as it is. Just something to consider.

 

I'll go away now. 

 

 

On Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 9:40 PM Brian Louis <chicagorc@...> wrote:

I didn't mention earlier that I started using a frame bag instead of the rear saddle bag. I bought it for longer rides and it worked out great since the radar mounts to the seat post. Plus the frame bag holds way more and is narrow enough that you don't really know it is there. It has been great for longer rides to hold all the nutrition you need, tubes, pump, etc. I didn't have to stuff my jersey pockets full of stuff, it all fit in the frame bag. Village has a few different ones, I bought the Black Point Macropod and love it. 

 

On Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 7:48 PM Lena Chon <lmnchon@...> wrote:

Brian,

I didn’t know you can pair it with another riders. That’s a motivation to stay tight in the pace line!  I had the experience of riding behind Mark and it was awesome

 

Interesting about what Sheri said with clearance. That may mean a shorter person like me may not be able to use it. I hardly have space for tail light, unless I move my light down to the fork.

 

Thank you for sharing,

Lena



On Jun 24, 2020, at 3:39 PM, Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...> wrote:



Garmin sent me both the Varia RTL515 (radar with taillight) and the RVR315 (radar w/o taillight) to test and review for RBR. I haven't been able to install it yet because the bands that came with the mount wont fit my seat post (too short). Got ahold of Garmin support today and they have me looping two bands together which I'll try after work. 

 

You do need to make sure you have enough room on your seat post to mount the radar correctly. I have a saddlebag that sits pretty low so not much room. 

 

As far as pairing one radar with multiple Garmins, I believe it is unlimited, just proximity would be the issue. So if the person with the radar is too far off the back or surges too far ahead, then connections would be lost. 

 

The Varia comes with three mounts so if you have an aero seatpost or tri bike it should fit. Again clearance is the major factor.

 

Nice to hear your feedback.

Sheri

 


From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io <general@BBC-Bike.groups.io> on behalf of Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:26 AM
To: BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry!

 

I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

 

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

 

- Brian Louis


 

--

Tom Craig
www.tcraigphoto.com

224-627-6330


CONFIDENTIALITY NOTICE: The content of this message and any files transmitted with it is a confidential and proprietary business communication, which is solely for the use of the intended recipient(s). Any use, distribution, duplication or disclosure by any other person or entity is strictly prohibited. If you are not an intended recipient or this has been received in error, please notify the sender and immediately delete all copies of this communication.


steveojano
 

I think riding with both is the way to go.  Just my $0.02.  I'm buying a varia because of so many great reviews here I've read and I've been riding with my mirror for a little over 12 years.

Mirrors are great for watching for cars but I honestly use my mirror more to make sure I'm pulling fast enough/not too fast. It's so nice to be able to quickly check my mirror to see other riders' positions.

On Wed, Jun 24, 2020, 10:10 PM Tom Craig <photom63@...> wrote:
But seriously...

I'm not sure why we are still so averse to riding with mirrors. Everything else on the road is required to have one and we are THE MOST at-risk. We aren't professional riders with cleared roads, so why wouldn't we want to see what's coming up from behind? During every group ride, I see someone (or multiple someones) drift out to the middle of the lane unaware of cars behind them who have to swerve farther into the oncoming lane than they should have to. I don't see 100% of the cars coming up from behind, but I KNOW I'm much more aware of cars than anyone else who is just hoping to hear them and I do my best to announce and warn. If anyone can give me a reason other than "it's not cool or aero", I would love to hear it. Face it-no one else on the road thinks we look cool in all of that spandex except us, and I'm pretty sure it wouldn't make any difference at the speeds we are riding (except for maybe Snitz or Eldrige and a few others). And remember, most of us were too cool to wear helmets once upon a time. Sorry to lecture, but not sorry. The roads are dangerous places for bikes and we do enough risk-taking as it is. Just something to consider.

I'll go away now. 


On Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 9:40 PM Brian Louis <chicagorc@...> wrote:
I didn't mention earlier that I started using a frame bag instead of the rear saddle bag. I bought it for longer rides and it worked out great since the radar mounts to the seat post. Plus the frame bag holds way more and is narrow enough that you don't really know it is there. It has been great for longer rides to hold all the nutrition you need, tubes, pump, etc. I didn't have to stuff my jersey pockets full of stuff, it all fit in the frame bag. Village has a few different ones, I bought the Black Point Macropod and love it. 

On Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 7:48 PM Lena Chon <lmnchon@...> wrote:
Brian,
I didn’t know you can pair it with another riders. That’s a motivation to stay tight in the pace line!  I had the experience of riding behind Mark and it was awesome

Interesting about what Sheri said with clearance. That may mean a shorter person like me may not be able to use it. I hardly have space for tail light, unless I move my light down to the fork.

Thank you for sharing,
Lena


On Jun 24, 2020, at 3:39 PM, Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...> wrote:


Garmin sent me both the Varia RTL515 (radar with taillight) and the RVR315 (radar w/o taillight) to test and review for RBR. I haven't been able to install it yet because the bands that came with the mount wont fit my seat post (too short). Got ahold of Garmin support today and they have me looping two bands together which I'll try after work. 

You do need to make sure you have enough room on your seat post to mount the radar correctly. I have a saddlebag that sits pretty low so not much room. 

As far as pairing one radar with multiple Garmins, I believe it is unlimited, just proximity would be the issue. So if the person with the radar is too far off the back or surges too far ahead, then connections would be lost. 

The Varia comes with three mounts so if you have an aero seatpost or tri bike it should fit. Again clearance is the major factor.

Nice to hear your feedback.
Sheri


From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io <general@BBC-Bike.groups.io> on behalf of Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:26 AM
To: BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry!
 
I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

- Brian Louis



--
Tom Craig
www.tcraigphoto.com
224-627-6330


John Clark
 

This may look a bit “dorky”, but this $16 mirror is the best rear view mirror I have used (after trying many).


I found that mirrors that mounted to my bike or helmet vibrated too much to see clearly what is coming behind me.  Some of these were not made of glass which also distorted the rear view. A bike mounted mirror stays with my bike, not with me - meaning that if you own multiple bikes, you need to buy one for every bike you own.  For the handlebar mounted mirror, I also had to look down to see what was coming behind me, which created another safety concern since my eyes weren’t looking ahead.

The take a look active mirror is made out of glass and since it mounts to my sunglasses, it always is with me and is generally is clear and very stable. The mirror gives a full view of what is behind you. I bought my from Village CycleSport a while back.

This mirror, along with flashing front and rear lights (day and night), make me feel pretty safe most of the time.  I use a 1100 lumens Cygolite Metro headlight and a Cygolite Pro 150 tail light (both rechargeable via USB).  These are both very bright and make your bike very visible on the road from a great distance away.

As others have said, I can’t stress enough how important lights are (day and night) to significantly improving the visibility and safety of bike riders.  I know they add more weight to your carbon fiber SRAM Red build super bike (yes, I have one as well), but I think we would all agree that some extra weight is less important than trying to avoid getting hit by a car while riding.

John Clark
Village of Barrington 
Bike and Pedestrian Committee 


On Jun 25, 2020, at 5:09 AM, Jennifer Goldberg <JenniferLGoldberg@...> wrote:

I use BOTH the mirror and the radar. I have the old version of the radar and Ive used it for years. Best money Ive ever spent. In my opinion its not an either or- together you get so much more. You get an advanced audible and visual warning without having to avert your eyes, and then you can use the mirror to see what is coming. No one can look at the mirror constantly and the radar doesnt show you exactly whats coming (semi? Pick up truck?) 

There is no sure protection but together I do feel a lot more aware.  

Please excuse any typos from this device!
Jen

On Jun 24, 2020, at 10:14 PM, Tom Cramer <TCramer@...> wrote:



Everyone knows the mirror is pointed up at yourself. “You’re so vain”…lol

 

Tom Crameror 

From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io [mailto:general@BBC-Bike.groups.io] On Behalf Of Tom Craig
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:11 PM
To: Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Cc: Lena Chon <lmnchon@...>; Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...>; BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry! [EXTERNAL EMAIL - CAUTION]

 

But seriously...

 

I'm not sure why we are still so averse to riding with mirrors. Everything else on the road is required to have one and we are THE MOST at-risk. We aren't professional riders with cleared roads, so why wouldn't we want to see what's coming up from behind? During every group ride, I see someone (or multiple someones) drift out to the middle of the lane unaware of cars behind them who have to swerve farther into the oncoming lane than they should have to. I don't see 100% of the cars coming up from behind, but I KNOW I'm much more aware of cars than anyone else who is just hoping to hear them and I do my best to announce and warn. If anyone can give me a reason other than "it's not cool or aero", I would love to hear it. Face it-no one else on the road thinks we look cool in all of that spandex except us, and I'm pretty sure it wouldn't make any difference at the speeds we are riding (except for maybe Snitz or Eldrige and a few others). And remember, most of us were too cool to wear helmets once upon a time. Sorry to lecture, but not sorry. The roads are dangerous places for bikes and we do enough risk-taking as it is. Just something to consider.

 

I'll go away now. 

 

 

On Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 9:40 PM Brian Louis <chicagorc@...> wrote:

I didn't mention earlier that I started using a frame bag instead of the rear saddle bag. I bought it for longer rides and it worked out great since the radar mounts to the seat post. Plus the frame bag holds way more and is narrow enough that you don't really know it is there. It has been great for longer rides to hold all the nutrition you need, tubes, pump, etc. I didn't have to stuff my jersey pockets full of stuff, it all fit in the frame bag. Village has a few different ones, I bought the Black Point Macropod and love it. 

 

On Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 7:48 PM Lena Chon <lmnchon@...> wrote:

Brian,

I didn’t know you can pair it with another riders. That’s a motivation to stay tight in the pace line!  I had the experience of riding behind Mark and it was awesome

 

Interesting about what Sheri said with clearance. That may mean a shorter person like me may not be able to use it. I hardly have space for tail light, unless I move my light down to the fork.

 

Thank you for sharing,

Lena



On Jun 24, 2020, at 3:39 PM, Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...> wrote:



Garmin sent me both the Varia RTL515 (radar with taillight) and the RVR315 (radar w/o taillight) to test and review for RBR. I haven't been able to install it yet because the bands that came with the mount wont fit my seat post (too short). Got ahold of Garmin support today and they have me looping two bands together which I'll try after work. 

 

You do need to make sure you have enough room on your seat post to mount the radar correctly. I have a saddlebag that sits pretty low so not much room. 

 

As far as pairing one radar with multiple Garmins, I believe it is unlimited, just proximity would be the issue. So if the person with the radar is too far off the back or surges too far ahead, then connections would be lost. 

 

The Varia comes with three mounts so if you have an aero seatpost or tri bike it should fit. Again clearance is the major factor.

 

Nice to hear your feedback.

Sheri

 


From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io <general@BBC-Bike.groups.io> on behalf of Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:26 AM
To: BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry!

 

I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

 

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

 

- Brian Louis


 

--

Tom Craig
www.tcraigphoto.com

224-627-6330


CONFIDENTIALITY NOTICE: The content of this message and any files transmitted with it is a confidential and proprietary business communication, which is solely for the use of the intended recipient(s). Any use, distribution, duplication or disclosure by any other person or entity is strictly prohibited. If you are not an intended recipient or this has been received in error, please notify the sender and immediately delete all copies of this communication.


Doug Welter
 

Totally agree on the “take a look”. I started using one a few years ago in NM and took some ribbing for my “old man mirror”, but it is great and I don’t ride without it!


On Jun 25, 2020, at 7:41 AM, John Clark <jakuz@...> wrote:

This may look a bit “dorky”, but this $16 mirror is the best rear view mirror I have used (after trying many).


I found that mirrors that mounted to my bike or helmet vibrated too much to see clearly what is coming behind me.  Some of these were not made of glass which also distorted the rear view. A bike mounted mirror stays with my bike, not with me - meaning that if you own multiple bikes, you need to buy one for every bike you own.  For the handlebar mounted mirror, I also had to look down to see what was coming behind me, which created another safety concern since my eyes weren’t looking ahead.

The take a look active mirror is made out of glass and since it mounts to my sunglasses, it always is with me and is generally is clear and very stable. The mirror gives a full view of what is behind you. I bought my from Village CycleSport a while back.

This mirror, along with flashing front and rear lights (day and night), make me feel pretty safe most of the time.  I use a 1100 lumens Cygolite Metro headlight and a Cygolite Pro 150 tail light (both rechargeable via USB).  These are both very bright and make your bike very visible on the road from a great distance away.

As others have said, I can’t stress enough how important lights are (day and night) to significantly improving the visibility and safety of bike riders.  I know they add more weight to your carbon fiber SRAM Red build super bike (yes, I have one as well), but I think we would all agree that some extra weight is less important than trying to avoid getting hit by a car while riding.

John Clark
Village of Barrington 
Bike and Pedestrian Committee 


On Jun 25, 2020, at 5:09 AM, Jennifer Goldberg <JenniferLGoldberg@...> wrote:

I use BOTH the mirror and the radar. I have the old version of the radar and Ive used it for years. Best money Ive ever spent. In my opinion its not an either or- together you get so much more. You get an advanced audible and visual warning without having to avert your eyes, and then you can use the mirror to see what is coming. No one can look at the mirror constantly and the radar doesnt show you exactly whats coming (semi? Pick up truck?) 

There is no sure protection but together I do feel a lot more aware.  

Please excuse any typos from this device!
Jen

On Jun 24, 2020, at 10:14 PM, Tom Cramer <TCramer@...> wrote:



Everyone knows the mirror is pointed up at yourself. “You’re so vain”…lol

 

Tom Crameror 

From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io [mailto:general@BBC-Bike.groups.io] On Behalf Of Tom Craig
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:11 PM
To: Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Cc: Lena Chon <lmnchon@...>; Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...>; BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry! [EXTERNAL EMAIL - CAUTION]

 

But seriously...

 

I'm not sure why we are still so averse to riding with mirrors. Everything else on the road is required to have one and we are THE MOST at-risk. We aren't professional riders with cleared roads, so why wouldn't we want to see what's coming up from behind? During every group ride, I see someone (or multiple someones) drift out to the middle of the lane unaware of cars behind them who have to swerve farther into the oncoming lane than they should have to. I don't see 100% of the cars coming up from behind, but I KNOW I'm much more aware of cars than anyone else who is just hoping to hear them and I do my best to announce and warn. If anyone can give me a reason other than "it's not cool or aero", I would love to hear it. Face it-no one else on the road thinks we look cool in all of that spandex except us, and I'm pretty sure it wouldn't make any difference at the speeds we are riding (except for maybe Snitz or Eldrige and a few others). And remember, most of us were too cool to wear helmets once upon a time. Sorry to lecture, but not sorry. The roads are dangerous places for bikes and we do enough risk-taking as it is. Just something to consider.

 

I'll go away now. 

 

 

On Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 9:40 PM Brian Louis <chicagorc@...> wrote:

I didn't mention earlier that I started using a frame bag instead of the rear saddle bag. I bought it for longer rides and it worked out great since the radar mounts to the seat post. Plus the frame bag holds way more and is narrow enough that you don't really know it is there. It has been great for longer rides to hold all the nutrition you need, tubes, pump, etc. I didn't have to stuff my jersey pockets full of stuff, it all fit in the frame bag. Village has a few different ones, I bought the Black Point Macropod and love it. 

 

On Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 7:48 PM Lena Chon <lmnchon@...> wrote:

Brian,

I didn’t know you can pair it with another riders. That’s a motivation to stay tight in the pace line!  I had the experience of riding behind Mark and it was awesome

 

Interesting about what Sheri said with clearance. That may mean a shorter person like me may not be able to use it. I hardly have space for tail light, unless I move my light down to the fork.

 

Thank you for sharing,

Lena



On Jun 24, 2020, at 3:39 PM, Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...> wrote:



Garmin sent me both the Varia RTL515 (radar with taillight) and the RVR315 (radar w/o taillight) to test and review for RBR. I haven't been able to install it yet because the bands that came with the mount wont fit my seat post (too short). Got ahold of Garmin support today and they have me looping two bands together which I'll try after work. 

 

You do need to make sure you have enough room on your seat post to mount the radar correctly. I have a saddlebag that sits pretty low so not much room. 

 

As far as pairing one radar with multiple Garmins, I believe it is unlimited, just proximity would be the issue. So if the person with the radar is too far off the back or surges too far ahead, then connections would be lost. 

 

The Varia comes with three mounts so if you have an aero seatpost or tri bike it should fit. Again clearance is the major factor.

 

Nice to hear your feedback.

Sheri

 


From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io <general@BBC-Bike.groups.io> on behalf of Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:26 AM
To: BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry!

 

I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

 

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

 

- Brian Louis


 

--

Tom Craig
www.tcraigphoto.com

224-627-6330


CONFIDENTIALITY NOTICE: The content of this message and any files transmitted with it is a confidential and proprietary business communication, which is solely for the use of the intended recipient(s). Any use, distribution, duplication or disclosure by any other person or entity is strictly prohibited. If you are not an intended recipient or this has been received in error, please notify the sender and immediately delete all copies of this communication.


Ryan Aydelott
 

I have a Varia as well - I find it useful on suburban roads where there are groups of cars being let out from lights, and especially useful on rural roads, etc. In the city, I tend to tune it out, just too many alerts/cars all the time. The ability to count the number of cars behind you is also nice and helps keep my attention on it for awareness vs. just a beep. The only downside for me is battery life, for anything more then 4-5 hours you’ll need to bring a battery charger, this includes my garmin head unit as well, but I have an older 520, someone with a larger garmin might not.

Also - I encourage people to learn how to look behind without swerving, for me chin to shoulder so I don’t change my CoG is how I was taught, but everybody has different things that work best for them, a simple google search yields plenty of things to try.

Since we spend an amazing amount of time working on our speed/fitness but rarely dedicate more then a few a year to technique/handling skills, you can get some really big gains for a relatively small commitment in time. 

-ryan 


On Jun 24, 2020, at 7:48 PM, Lena Chon via groups.io <lmnchon@...> wrote:

Brian,
I didn’t know you can pair it with another riders. That’s a motivation to stay tight in the pace line!  I had the experience of riding behind Mark and it was awesome

Interesting about what Sheri said with clearance. That may mean a shorter person like me may not be able to use it. I hardly have space for tail light, unless I move my light down to the fork.

Thank you for sharing,
Lena


On Jun 24, 2020, at 3:39 PM, Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...> wrote:


Garmin sent me both the Varia RTL515 (radar with taillight) and the RVR315 (radar w/o taillight) to test and review for RBR. I haven't been able to install it yet because the bands that came with the mount wont fit my seat post (too short). Got ahold of Garmin support today and they have me looping two bands together which I'll try after work. 

You do need to make sure you have enough room on your seat post to mount the radar correctly. I have a saddlebag that sits pretty low so not much room. 

As far as pairing one radar with multiple Garmins, I believe it is unlimited, just proximity would be the issue. So if the person with the radar is too far off the back or surges too far ahead, then connections would be lost. 

The Varia comes with three mounts so if you have an aero seatpost or tri bike it should fit. Again clearance is the major factor.

Nice to hear your feedback.
Sheri


From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io <general@BBC-Bike.groups.io> on behalf of Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:26 AM
To: BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry!
 
I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

- Brian Louis


Mike McGehee (PBM)
 

All,

 

I have the Varia RTL510…. While I like it a lot… My main issue is that the taillight / radar battery outlasts my Garmin 1030.

 

When on long rides I actually disconnect the radar from the garmin so my head unit battery lasts.

 

I find it really frustrating that the radar battery outlasts what it is connected to. i.e. previous comments as well.

 

I get it… if you are in an urban area there will be more traffic, which “lights up” the head unit endlessly….. but….. still allow the head unit to last longer. Perhaps the new 1030 plus handles this better? I mean seriously folks (Garmin) wake up….. Perhaps you can reduce the screen light time OR allow something to override this?

 

B.T.W.  My wife rolled up on me the other day and commented that the light is stellar and she could see me many blocks away in full on daylight…. With that in mind I opted for battery conservation and disconnected while on the rural roads outside Hebron.. etc. where traffic was light.

 

Ryan,

 

I’m with you in this… Every spring when I first get out on the road I use “drills” to specifically help with the look back swerve. Sadly since we live in the Midwest we have to re-learn outside skills every year. Unfortunately a lot of riders fail to practice them.

 

Sheri,

 

Just JB weld them to your bike!!!  HAHA

 

Regards,

PBM

 

From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io <general@BBC-Bike.groups.io> On Behalf Of Ryan Aydelott
Sent: Thursday, June 25, 2020 10:57 AM
To: lmnchon@...
Cc: Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...>; Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>; BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry!

 

I have a Varia as well - I find it useful on suburban roads where there are groups of cars being let out from lights, and especially useful on rural roads, etc. In the city, I tend to tune it out, just too many alerts/cars all the time. The ability to count the number of cars behind you is also nice and helps keep my attention on it for awareness vs. just a beep. The only downside for me is battery life, for anything more then 4-5 hours you’ll need to bring a battery charger, this includes my garmin head unit as well, but I have an older 520, someone with a larger garmin might not.

 

Also - I encourage people to learn how to look behind without swerving, for me chin to shoulder so I don’t change my CoG is how I was taught, but everybody has different things that work best for them, a simple google search yields plenty of things to try.

 

Since we spend an amazing amount of time working on our speed/fitness but rarely dedicate more then a few a year to technique/handling skills, you can get some really big gains for a relatively small commitment in time. 

 

-ryan 

 



On Jun 24, 2020, at 7:48 PM, Lena Chon via groups.io <lmnchon@...> wrote:

 

Brian,

I didn’t know you can pair it with another riders. That’s a motivation to stay tight in the pace line!  I had the experience of riding behind Mark and it was awesome

 

Interesting about what Sheri said with clearance. That may mean a shorter person like me may not be able to use it. I hardly have space for tail light, unless I move my light down to the fork.

 

Thank you for sharing,

Lena



On Jun 24, 2020, at 3:39 PM, Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...> wrote:



Garmin sent me both the Varia RTL515 (radar with taillight) and the RVR315 (radar w/o taillight) to test and review for RBR. I haven't been able to install it yet because the bands that came with the mount wont fit my seat post (too short). Got ahold of Garmin support today and they have me looping two bands together which I'll try after work. 

 

You do need to make sure you have enough room on your seat post to mount the radar correctly. I have a saddlebag that sits pretty low so not much room. 

 

As far as pairing one radar with multiple Garmins, I believe it is unlimited, just proximity would be the issue. So if the person with the radar is too far off the back or surges too far ahead, then connections would be lost. 

 

The Varia comes with three mounts so if you have an aero seatpost or tri bike it should fit. Again clearance is the major factor.

 

Nice to hear your feedback.

Sheri

 


From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io <general@BBC-Bike.groups.io> on behalf of Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:26 AM
To: BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry!

 

I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

 

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

 

- Brian Louis

 


tinasmith7934
 

I broke down and bought a "Take a Look" mirror.  $15.  It rode with me this morning on its solo voyage and it worked GREAT.  Super clear visibility as mirror is glass.  So, maybe I'm an "old lady" now but I will use this as long as I continue to ride solo during Covid.  
Ride safe everyone!
Tina


On Thu, Jun 25, 2020 at 8:38 AM, Doug Welter
<dougwelter@...> wrote:
Totally agree on the “take a look”. I started using one a few years ago in NM and took some ribbing for my “old man mirror”, but it is great and I don’t ride without it!


On Jun 25, 2020, at 7:41 AM, John Clark <jakuz@...> wrote:


This may look a bit “dorky”, but this $16 mirror is the best rear view mirror I have used (after trying many).


I found that mirrors that mounted to my bike or helmet vibrated too much to see clearly what is coming behind me.  Some of these were not made of glass which also distorted the rear view. A bike mounted mirror stays with my bike, not with me - meaning that if you own multiple bikes, you need to buy one for every bike you own.  For the handlebar mounted mirror, I also had to look down to see what was coming behind me, which created another safety concern since my eyes weren’t looking ahead.

The take a look active mirror is made out of glass and since it mounts to my sunglasses, it always is with me and is generally is clear and very stable. The mirror gives a full view of what is behind you. I bought my from Village CycleSport a while back.

This mirror, along with flashing front and rear lights (day and night), make me feel pretty safe most of the time.  I use a 1100 lumens Cygolite Metro headlight and a Cygolite Pro 150 tail light (both rechargeable via USB).  These are both very bright and make your bike very visible on the road from a great distance away.

As others have said, I can’t stress enough how important lights are (day and night) to significantly improving the visibility and safety of bike riders.  I know they add more weight to your carbon fiber SRAM Red build super bike (yes, I have one as well), but I think we would all agree that some extra weight is less important than trying to avoid getting hit by a car while riding.

John Clark
Village of Barrington 
Bike and Pedestrian Committee 


On Jun 25, 2020, at 5:09 AM, Jennifer Goldberg <JenniferLGoldberg@...> wrote:


I use BOTH the mirror and the radar. I have the old version of the radar and Ive used it for years. Best money Ive ever spent. In my opinion its not an either or- together you get so much more. You get an advanced audible and visual warning without having to avert your eyes, and then you can use the mirror to see what is coming. No one can look at the mirror constantly and the radar doesnt show you exactly whats coming (semi? Pick up truck?) 

There is no sure protection but together I do feel a lot more aware.  

Please excuse any typos from this device!
Jen

On Jun 24, 2020, at 10:14 PM, Tom Cramer <TCramer@...> wrote:



Everyone knows the mirror is pointed up at yourself. “You’re so vain”…lol

 

Tom Crameror 

From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io [mailto:general@BBC-Bike.groups.io] On Behalf Of Tom Craig
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:11 PM
To: Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Cc: Lena Chon <lmnchon@...>; Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...>; BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry! [EXTERNAL EMAIL - CAUTION]

 

But seriously...

 

I'm not sure why we are still so averse to riding with mirrors. Everything else on the road is required to have one and we are THE MOST at-risk. We aren't professional riders with cleared roads, so why wouldn't we want to see what's coming up from behind? During every group ride, I see someone (or multiple someones) drift out to the middle of the lane unaware of cars behind them who have to swerve farther into the oncoming lane than they should have to. I don't see 100% of the cars coming up from behind, but I KNOW I'm much more aware of cars than anyone else who is just hoping to hear them and I do my best to announce and warn. If anyone can give me a reason other than "it's not cool or aero", I would love to hear it. Face it-no one else on the road thinks we look cool in all of that spandex except us, and I'm pretty sure it wouldn't make any difference at the speeds we are riding (except for maybe Snitz or Eldrige and a few others). And remember, most of us were too cool to wear helmets once upon a time. Sorry to lecture, but not sorry. The roads are dangerous places for bikes and we do enough risk-taking as it is. Just something to consider.

 

I'll go away now. 

 

 

On Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 9:40 PM Brian Louis <chicagorc@...> wrote:

I didn't mention earlier that I started using a frame bag instead of the rear saddle bag. I bought it for longer rides and it worked out great since the radar mounts to the seat post. Plus the frame bag holds way more and is narrow enough that you don't really know it is there. It has been great for longer rides to hold all the nutrition you need, tubes, pump, etc. I didn't have to stuff my jersey pockets full of stuff, it all fit in the frame bag. Village has a few different ones, I bought the Black Point Macropod and love it. 

 

On Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 7:48 PM Lena Chon <lmnchon@...> wrote:

Brian,

I didn’t know you can pair it with another riders. That’s a motivation to stay tight in the pace line!  I had the experience of riding behind Mark and it was awesome

 

Interesting about what Sheri said with clearance. That may mean a shorter person like me may not be able to use it. I hardly have space for tail light, unless I move my light down to the fork.

 

Thank you for sharing,

Lena



On Jun 24, 2020, at 3:39 PM, Sheri Rosenbaum <Luv2Bike80@...> wrote:



Garmin sent me both the Varia RTL515 (radar with taillight) and the RVR315 (radar w/o taillight) to test and review for RBR. I haven't been able to install it yet because the bands that came with the mount wont fit my seat post (too short). Got ahold of Garmin support today and they have me looping two bands together which I'll try after work. 

 

You do need to make sure you have enough room on your seat post to mount the radar correctly. I have a saddlebag that sits pretty low so not much room. 

 

As far as pairing one radar with multiple Garmins, I believe it is unlimited, just proximity would be the issue. So if the person with the radar is too far off the back or surges too far ahead, then connections would be lost. 

 

The Varia comes with three mounts so if you have an aero seatpost or tri bike it should fit. Again clearance is the major factor.

 

Nice to hear your feedback.

Sheri

 


From: general@BBC-Bike.groups.io <general@BBC-Bike.groups.io> on behalf of Brian Louis <chicagorc@...>
Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2020 10:26 AM
To: BBC Groups Io <BBC-Bike@groups.io>
Subject: [BBC-Bike] Garmin Varia Rear Flasher / Radar - Great Accesorry!

 

I recently purchased a Garmin Varia RTL515 Rearview Radar with Taillight. I have had a chance to use it a few times and wanted to share my experience with all of you. It only took a few minutes to decide this thing is awesome and I wish I had bought one sooner. Village Cycle has a few on order according to Mike Page and should have them in stock soon if you decide you want one.  

 

It works like this, when a car approaches the radar picks it up from 150 yards back, gives you an audible alert, and displays on your Garmin (or phone app) amber lines on each side or red lines if the car is approaching rapidly. A small dot moves up your screen as the car approaches, multiple dots for multiple cars, then after all is clear the red lines turn green then go away. The taillight flasher pattern changes when a car approaches to give you way more visibility. This is a great feature! The button to change the pattern manually is easy to reach right on the top of the radar unit. 

 

I rode with a friend and he was able to pair his Garmin to my radar and get these same warnings. I'm not sure how many devices you can pair to 1 radar. When a bike is behind you you get a warning but then after a few seconds it realizes its a bike and the warning goes away. It also changes the flasher to be less obnoxious assuming you are in front of another rider. It will still show cars coming even if there are bikes behind you. The battery life is 15 hours when the taillight is in flasher mode. It comes with 3 different seat post mounts and uses the standard Garmin 1/4 turn mount. 

 

I still see roadies out there everyday riding w/o a rear flasher. You should be using one day or night. Spend a few extra bucks on the Varia and get the additional safety of rear radar. It will take one ride to get used to not having to turn around constantly to see if any cars are coming. I did a long ride last week and was amazed at how many times I was a few feet in the road after 15 or 20 minutes of no cars passing me. My Garmin would beep, I moved over and all was good. 

 

This is one of those accessories I thought about buying for a long time. I wanted to share my experience with all of you in case you were doing the same thing. Go buy one. You will be happy you did! 

 

- Brian Louis


 

--

Tom Craig
www.tcraigphoto.com

224-627-6330


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