Radar Detectors?

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by ogklx400, Feb 12, 2018.

  1. ogklx400

    ogklx400 Long timer

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    So I'm just wondering about you guys that have radar detectors has it saved you from getting a ticket? If so is this mostly on interstate road? Or has it also helped you out on back road? I haven't had a speeding ticket in many years and most of time I do I ride what the road is posted for or 5 mph over. I'm not looking to buy one because for me it's just another distraction. Just wanted to here some pros and cons about them. Thanks ADV
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  2. jfauerba

    jfauerba Been here awhile

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    Saved me several tickets but you can't use the radar detector alone. It is just one of many tools. Never be the fastest one on the Interstate, just be the tird or forth person back. On back roads, radar is normally used in straight aways but not the fun curves. Speed in the curves but stay within 5 on the straights. Also use Waze. My radar detector is the old model which picks up all the radar's that the new cars are using. When I see the Ka band, that is always a copy, other bands may or may not be.
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  3. ogklx400

    ogklx400 Long timer

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    Thanks for the info jfauerba. I follow some of the same rules as you. I'm glad it's saved your but tickets aren't cheap. Now that I think about it iv got radar that's built into a old K bike I have it's probably a 25 year old unit one that you can't swap from bike to bike someone that owned it before me had it installed I remember having it on the first couple days I owned the bike it would go off non stop if you were rolling threw a city from the buildings that had alarms on them. I was paying to much attention to the beeping noise and flashing red light so after 2 or 3 days of that I had enough and just left it off.
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  4. thebeancounter

    thebeancounter Adventurer

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    My radar detector has saved me from more tickets than I can count. Agree with everything @jfauerba says - you still gotta ride smart. I also use the Legal Speeding HARD system.
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  5. Inzane123

    Inzane123 Been here awhile

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    On a bike, it is just a waste of a power outlet. Keep the speed reasonable and look ahead for the hiding spots. From what I have noticed, most cops will ignore a bike running down the interstate. Also, with all of the collision avoidance systems on cars, a radar detector has become an annoyance that goes off when you overtake a newer car or SUV.
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  6. sanjoh

    sanjoh Purveyor of Light

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    Was once a radar detector user, mostly useless since the advent of laser.

    Never underestimate the capability of industry when there is a buck to be made in the name of safety and with government backing!
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  7. Telekinesis

    Telekinesis Adventurer

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    I use a radar detector in my car (haven't found a good solution for mounting it to my bike, and my radar detector isn't weather proof) and it has saved me from several speeding tickets, some of which would have been quite expensive.

    It's always important to remember that it's a radar detector, not a cop detector, so you have to be smart about speeding - look ahead for the cop on the side of the road, don't be the fastest guy out there, etc.

    This is very location dependent. I've thankfully not seen many laser users in my area, most cops just ride around with their Ka band radars going. My radar detector does detect laser, but my understanding is that by the time you get the alert, recognize it, and get to the speed limit, the cop already has you.
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  8. Thrasherg

    Thrasherg Adventurer

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    I am like many of the above, I have one in my car, but it gives so many false alerts that I refuse to use it on a bike, I want to be concentrating on my riding not some black box that is giving wrong information. Laser really seems very wide spread and most detectors fail to detect it so you still get a ticket. Smart riding seems to be the best solution, always let a faster car go in front of you, stay within 5 mph of the posted limit, use large trucks to your advantage (use them to block a radar's view of you), etc. My detector has not saved me from a single ticket in the 3 years I have owned it and I consider it a complete waste of money.. I started turning off a lot of the older radar bands, so I get a lot fewer false alerts, but the majority of speed traps that I see in Texas use laser and not once has my detector gone off to warn me (It's supposed to detect laser, but doesn't seem too!). Save your money and ride smart..

    Gary
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  9. WindBlast

    WindBlast Recalculating........

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    Waste? I think not. My RD has saved me MANY times. I have won lots of driving awards when I did not have one. Yes the new side radar cars are using make using it more difficult but that only applies in traffic when cars are nearby. If you are out on the open back roads a detector is still worth it's weight in gold. That is where I try to do most of my riding anyways. Valentine supposedly has an update available to deal with the side radar for around $100 so I may have to look into that. Money well spent I would imagine.
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  10. High Country Herb

    High Country Herb Adventure Connoiseur

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    A couple years ago I looked into these, and it seemed like Valentine gave you by far the most information about which side and how many hits it picked up. That seems like useful information to me. If you see 2 ahead, you don't speed back up after only passing one. They have a bunch of stories on their website written by people being saved by it, but it's always hard to tell if they are genuine.

    [​IMG]
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  11. Florida Lime

    Florida Lime Long timer

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    I used an original Escort Passport when I did a cross country motorcycle trip back in the mid-eighties. Back in the days of the 55mph national speed limit, and it saved me several times. I used to run a V1 when I had my car, but I sold the car years ago. I run just over the limit on the highway with the van, and really don't need one as I try to get good gas mileage (if 15 mpg is considered good :bluduh).

    I've thought about getting one for the bike again, but I try to ride smart instead.
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  12. max384

    max384 Bandaided

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    I used to use one in my car, but the massive number of false negative beeps made me largely ignore them all because of sensory overload. Not to mention, around here, VASCAR is predominantly used, which is basically just an officer using a stop watch between two known points. Radar detectors can't detect VASCAR. I think in PA, radar can only be used by state police, not locals; though I could be wrong about that.

    The Waze app sounds interesting though. For those of you that use this, does it do a good job of alerting you to speed traps in sparsely populated back roads?
    #12
  13. Tall Man

    Tall Man Priest, Temple of Syrinx

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    Not in my experience. Waze is a user-driven app. I got dinged in October precisely because the driving population, on that day, was too sparse. No drivers = no updates to LEO presence = no alerts for me.

    And of course any other drivers in a given area have to be actively using the app.

    I had the road to myself that day, which was great until I got lit up.

    YMMV
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  14. max384

    max384 Bandaided

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    That's kind of what I figured. Thanks for the feedback.
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  15. BetterLateThanNever

    BetterLateThanNever Long timer

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    x2. Waze is great in cities, very close to useless in rural areas.
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  16. CSI

    CSI Long timer

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    They can certainly save you from the Officer you don't see.....that guy over the hill running radar. But alot of guys don't leave the radar unit transmitting. I always left mine on standby until I saw a violator.....I would then hit he transmit button to confirm my observations. By the time the violator's radar detector went off, it was too late.

    Now, having said all that. Do I wish I had one on my bike?

    Yup.
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  17. Ray916MN

    Ray916MN Dim Mak

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    Use one in my car. Has saved me and is particularly useful on long road trips where an extra 10 mph can trim over an hour off the total travel time. Have used Escort Passports and BELs and am using a Valentine One right now. The directional information on the Valentine is really useful. Helps me identify falses and when a risk is really over. Hadn't thought about it, but I've noticed that allot of what I would have considered falses in the past are actually patrol cars going by in the opposite direction that I can't see through the highway divider barrier. Don't tend to ride much or speed much on highways on the bike and on the two lane back roads I spend most of the time riding, I rarely run into LEOs radar or laser.
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  18. Hi-De-Ho

    Hi-De-Ho Mad Scientist

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    For me, it all depends on which bike I am riding. I don't use a RD in my cars (probably should), but on my larger/faster bikes...you betcha.

    In all seriousness, and with NO bullshit....my Valentine One radar detector has saved me thousands and thousands of dollars in speeding tickets.
    As stated above, it is a TOOL, and not to be used solely as the detection device to find who is watching you. You also need common sense and logic about where the "watchers" are hiding, and how to move through traffic without making yourself stand out.

    I will NOT ride my larger/faster bikes without my Valentine One radar detector, as I ride....phast.....and for me to slow down, it has a negative affect on my riding skills, as it puts me to sleep to drone down the road.

    Valentine even stepped up and replaced my V-1 after the "lightning strike" issue, and gave me a new one in exchange for the cripsy critter one. :permazot
    #18
  19. foxtrapper

    foxtrapper Long timer

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    I've had them off and on, currently don't have one. The false signals on the radar band drives me nuts. It's like listening to disco music, beep beep...beep..beepbeepbeep. Ug. Squelch it down to be quiet and you don't get a warning of the radar on you until you're like 50 feet away. I just couldn't win with radar, regardless of the unit (that said, I never ran a Valentine). But Cobra, Escort, etc., lots of false signal warnings.

    Around here there is a lot of stop watch stuff, which no unit can detect. Good bit of laser also, which they don't detect well. And a good bit of fast moving unmarked cruiser coming up behind you and pacing you for the ticket.

    While I can't recall ever getting a ticket while running a radar detector, I equally can't recall any really good example of it saving me from a ticket either.

    So all in all, it's not been worthwhile for me to use one.
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  20. sanjoh

    sanjoh Purveyor of Light

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    Georgia seems to be very active wrt laser speed sensing. I've seen very small towns (with interstate in jurisdiction) shooting laser to supplement the coffers.

    Fortunately a laser has to be static to get a fix, so I just look for cars/cops on the side of the road or if an active road Waze cannot be beat!
    #20
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