There are few options when it comes to mounting a bell on a bicycle with dropped handlebars. The Incredibell Road Bell by the Mirrycle Corporation in Boulder Colorado, however, is one bell specifically designed to fit on Shimano STI road levels.
This tiny, dinging bell has a dome diameter of just 28mm and a price tag of just $11.00 USD.
The bell comes mounted in the right-hand position, but if you are left-handed rider and would prefer to have the bell on the left side of your bike, you can flip the thumb lever around with just a small adjustment prior to installation.
To install the bell, you first have to determine what type of shifters you have on your bicycle. Then, using the small chart that is included with the bell itself, determine whether or not you need to install any of the extra shims or screws (included with the product) that are needed to match the bell with the specific type of levers you have on your bike. Luckily, my Fuji Touring bicycle, which has Tiagra levers, did not need any extra parts prior to installation, so I was able to skip this step.
After you’ve checked the compatibility chart and followed the instructions for installing any extra pieces that might need to be applied, pull off the top of your lever’s rubber hood. Then, slide the bell onto the exposed brake lever clip (see photos belows). Once you’ve slid the bell into postion on the lever clip, carefully slide in and tighten the small cap screw with the included 2.5mm hex wrench. This cap screw will work to keep the bell held in place while you ride.
Finally, pull the rubber hood of your levers up over the clip on the back of the bell base until it is tight and secure.
Installing this mirror can be a bit tricky, but once you have it in place it’s ready to go and you won’t have to mess with it… to much.
Best Things About This Bell
In the end, the best thing about the Incredibell Road Bell is that it is so incredibly unique. I’ve never seen another bell like it in all my life. The fact that there is even a bell on the market for people who ride with dropped handlebars is pretty impressive. Unlike traditional bike bells, which are mounted onto the handlebars themselves, this bell is mounted in such a position that it is completely out of the way as you ride, so it doesn’t compromise any of your various hand positions. This is a huge plus for any road or touring cyclist.
The design of the mount for the bell is unique as well. If I had been the designer of such a bell I don’t think I ever would have thought to place the mount under the rubber hood of my levers. Very cool!
Worst Things About This Bell
That said, I do have some reservations about this bell overall.
First of all, the bell is somewhat difficult to install. There are installation directions that come with the product itself and all the neessary parts are also included, but figuring out how to mount the bell with all the different shims and screws can be a bit of a pain. But this is to be expected when a product such as this tries to be compatible with a number of different types of levers made by different companies in different shapes and sizes, etc. The fact that the bell works with so many different types of levers should be commended.
My other big criticism about this bell is that even once it is installed it doesn’t seem to fit on the bike all that well. Once installed, the rubber hood (now propped up over the bell base) sticks up and looks a bit strange. On occasion, while testing this bell, the rubber hood would slip out of position and I’d have to stop the bike and wrestle it back over the top of the bell base. Even when I saw this bell at last year’s Interbike trade show in Las Vegas, Nevada, the rubber hood on the back of the levers was out of place – and this was on the product as it was on display at a huge industry event. This tells me that while the design is certainly unique, there is still some work to be done before it is entirely perfect.
My Overall Impression:
After using this bell on my touring bike for a number of weeks I feel safe to say that the bell works and the design is certainly unique. However, I think the position of the bell itself and the design of the base clip need some extra thought. And more importantly, I wonder about the need for a bell of any type on bikes with dropped handlebars. Most people riding with drops are probably more concerned with speed and aerodynamics than they are about ringing a bell at the people in front of them. For the touring market, a product like this might be very much appreciated, but I don’t know how many bells I’m going to see in the road cycling crowd.
My Rating: 7 Out Of 10
More information can be found at: www.mirrycle.com
Additional photos below:
The product featured here was sent to Bicycle Touring Pro at no expense for the purpose of this review.