Motorcycle Radar Detector Guide

RoverTtx

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After Vortex's last stream, it seemed like many people could use help running radar detectors on their motorcycles. I'll try to share what I know and make a useful resource here.

Overview:
There are two unique challenges to this:
  1. Mounting the detector
  2. Getting the alerts in your helmet/dash area
The simplest method is to use your phone paired to an intercom like a SENA, then run an app that talks to your detector via bluetooth. This way you'll get alerts on your phone screen as well as through your headset. This will allow the detector to be mounted anywhere with power and not have excess wires, displays, etc.

What's Needed
  • Helmet intercom (Sena, Cardo, etc)
  • Smart phone - If you want to use a Valentine Detector, go for an android. Waterproof is a plus
  • Radar Detector with bluetooth - Bluetooth allows you to control, see, hear it via a phone and avoid audio wires, fumbling with controls while wearing gloves, etc.
    • Typical things still apply in choosing a detector. For example, you probably want something with long range and good false alert filtering.
    • Currently, my top picks would be an Escort Max 360 or a Valentine One Gen 2 but anything with bluetooth and good radar abilities will work. I LOVE using a Valentine with the JBV1 app and that would be my personal choice.
  • Mounts
    • For the phone, I recommend a RAM X mount, but this is just preference
    • For the detector, this is up to you. I'll attach some photos of typical mounts that work well. Remember, most detectors aren't waterproof so consider this when mounting. People used to sell waterproof housings for the Valentine V1 but I can't find them now. Make sure the front of the detector isn't too obstructed, the device is level, and if it has a rear antenna be sure to keep it unobstructed if possible.
    • Detectors are expensive, so be careful mounting near front fenders because rocks can easily kill one
    • Simplest choice is a ram handlebar mount paired to a flat ball attachment. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004O8LF26/?tag=rdf0cd0c-20 https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00JUWB6SO/?tag=rdf0cd0c-20
4-30912P-RADAR-2.jpg
Radar-Detector-Mount1.jpg



Setup:
  • First, mount your phone and detector. Both should be easily removable for security and rain.
  • Run power to the detector. Find a switched and fused 12v power source to tap in to and hardwire detector power to this.
  • Assuming you have your helmet audio figured out already, you just need to connect the detector to your phone. This is different for every detector, so find help for your specific case
  • Many apps will automatically start when the detector turns on and connects. This is probably ideal, so you just turn on your bike and the app opens on your phone.

A few notes:
This setup does rely on a phone, but if you have the display visible and volume maxed on the detector you will likely see/hear it alert even without a phone.
This setup may not be ideal for you, but it's what I've found works best and is the most straight forward to use. Unless you really want a remote display, the phone is ideal for most and probably already has a place on your bike.
 
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RoverTtx

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I would like to add to your fine write up, for consideration the RAM Magnetic mount.
Fast, clean, secure, convenient.
Love mine.
No straps required.
View attachment 165155 View attachment 165156
Nice! I've never used those so I didn't know whether they were trustworthy or not.
I want to add that to the original post but my ability to edit the first post seems to have passed. Maybe a moderator can help me?
But here's that product on amazon if anyone is curious https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004Y0ZC8M/?tag=rdf0cd0c-20
 
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Vortex

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Thanks so much for volunteering to help create an awesome resource for your fellow motorcycle riders! This is great. :)

I love that you're going into details about specifics and things that are unique for using on a motorcycle. Seeing all the setup photos are excellent too.

Do you like those third party visual lights that flash when your detector goes off?
 

LouG

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I too use Gen2/JBV1. Among the many advantages is CSA's on the one screen (no splitting or background running), cam database and user marks all alerting on the JBV1 screen.
Since I've been using apps I have a viable display option with more info at a glance than a detector display can provide.
On sports or naked bikes you usually cannot mount the detector stealthily and easily visible.
As for mounting, I use very strong velcro plus a retaining strap so that it can't be snatched while I'm paying for gas or similar.
 

DC Fluid

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Nice! I've never used those so I didn't know whether they were trustworthy or not.
I want to add that to the original post but my ability to edit the first post seems to have passed. Maybe a moderator can help me?
But here's that product on amazon if anyone is curious https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004Y0ZC8M/?tag=rdf0cd0c-20
You have to twist/slide it off the mount.
Rare earth magnets with about 40lbs of holding force.
A rectangular steel plate is attached to bottom of detector and fits into mount recess.
Very clean.
I have some info here...
 

RoverTtx

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Thanks so much for volunteering to help create an awesome resource for your fellow motorcycle riders! This is great. :)

I love that you're going into details about specifics and things that are unique for using on a motorcycle. Seeing all the setup photos are excellent too.

Do you like those third party visual lights that flash when your detector goes off?
Well it was your idea!
Hopefully it will serve to help someone down the line.
Personally, I don't feel the need to add those lights as I never have trouble getting alerts... but it would be a nice addition for someone willing to go the extra mile.
 

atc250r

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I spent a lot of time, effort, and money making what I consider to be the best set-up for a RD on a motorcycle. I am in Canada, in a province where detectors are illegal so stealth was #1. I also cross the border into ND and MN almost weekly, so again stealth is #1. I came up with this set-up in 2016, so I used a Redline-O, which is still treating me exceptionally well. I bought an electrical enclosure box, and a plastic Shade 5 welding lens For the front of it. I bought a power cord from Safe-N-Sound, with a Power LED light and a mute button. Bought the Escort Ground Loop Isolator and a 3.5mm Y adaptor and Bose QC-20 noise cancelling ear buds.

I modified the enclosure box to allow it to vent, yet remain waterproof with Frogskinz Vents from the snowmobile world. Drilled a couple 1” holes in the box, then applied the waterproof vents. Then drilled a hole in the box for the power cord to enter, and the Ground Loop Isolator to exit. I sealed that off with a rubber grommet from a Chevy dealer. I wired up the power cord to my low-beam headlight wire, so anytime the engine is running the detector is Live. That is confirmed by the red LED below my speedo. A tiny Mute button is affixed near my left grip to mute an alert I’m not interested in. The LED also flashes with the intensity of the audio alert. The audio comes to the handlebars through the ground loop isolator, into which I have the Y adapter plugged in. The other Male end of the Y adapter is plugged into my bikes audio system, which can be playing music from my phone, Waze, or satellite radio. With the Y adapter, radar alerts are heard above the volume of the music. Into the female end of the Y, I plug in my Bose. These things are amazing. If you want to ride Without wind noise, get a set of QC-20’s.

I tried many other systems (HARD LEDs, Marc Parnes LED, Radar Screamer, etc) but that’s all junk. Audio into your helmet is the only way to go.

I have been running this set-up for 4 years and tens of thousands of miles. It is the bomb. I start the engine, plug in my Bose, and ride away. No worrying about theft when I park overnight at a hotel. No worrying about rain. I leave the detector in that box 24/7.

Any questions, fire away.
 

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DC Fluid

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I spent a lot of time, effort, and money making what I consider to be the best set-up for a RD on a motorcycle. I am in Canada, in a province where detectors are illegal so stealth was #1. I also cross the border into ND and MN almost weekly, so again stealth is #1. I came up with this set-up in 2016, so I used a Redline-O, which is still treating me exceptionally well. I bought an electrical enclosure box, and a plastic Shade 5 welding lens For the front of it. I bought a power cord from Safe-N-Sound, with a Power LED light and a mute button. Bought the Escort Ground Loop Isolator and a 3.5mm Y adaptor and Bose QC-20 noise cancelling ear buds.

I modified the enclosure box to allow it to vent, yet remain waterproof with Frogskinz Vents from the snowmobile world. Drilled a couple 1” holes in the box, then applied the waterproof vents. Then drilled a hole in the box for the power cord to enter, and the Ground Loop Isolator to exit. I sealed that off with a rubber grommet from a Chevy dealer. I wired up the power cord to my low-beam headlight wire, so anytime the engine is running the detector is Live. That is confirmed by the red LED below my speedo. A tiny Mute button is affixed near my left grip to mute an alert I’m not interested in. The LED also flashes with the intensity of the audio alert. The audio comes to the handlebars through the ground loop isolator, into which I have the Y adapter plugged in. The other Male end of the Y adapter is plugged into my bikes audio system, which can be playing music from my phone, Waze, or satellite radio. With the Y adapter, radar alerts are heard above the volume of the music. Into the female end of the Y, I plug in my Bose. These things are amazing. If you want to ride Without wind noise, get a set of QC-20’s.

I tried many other systems (HARD LEDs, Marc Parnes LED, Radar Screamer, etc) but that’s all junk. Audio into your helmet is the only way to go.

I have been running this set-up for 4 years and tens of thousands of miles. It is the bomb. I start the engine, plug in my Bose, and ride away. No worrying about theft when I park overnight at a hotel. No worrying about rain. I leave the detector in that box 24/7.

Any questions, fire away.
And what a bike too!
 

spankyaf

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I recommend Netradar because of its remote antenna, jammer integration and phone app
 

atc250r

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@atc250r very nice. Does the box sitting in your intake affect performance at all?

That’s not actually the air intake on my bike. But there is an oil cooler behind the box that I am blocking about 50% of. This did concern me in the first year, so I carried a Fluke infrared temp gun with me and pulled over and checked oil temps frequently. In my type of riding, 185° is common. I think 210° is the hottest I’ve seen. Granted, I’m not doing stop’n’go rush hour commuting in Phoenix in July. Your results may vary...
 

KeithB

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I prefer simplicity in my setup. I also have to switch between 2 bikes. My setup is to hide the Redline O in a tankbag and a hardwired earphone jack to a speaker installed on my helmet. I figure less "break points" makes it more reliable.

By listening only, I can keep my eyes fully on the road. The K band false alerts keep me assured it's on and working. I just move the tankbag (which also contains the garage door opener and a covid mask) between bikes.
 
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LouG

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That’s not actually the air intake on my bike. But there is an oil cooler behind the box that I am blocking about 50% of. This did concern me in the first year, so I carried a Fluke infrared temp gun with me and pulled over and checked oil temps frequently. In my type of riding, 185° is common. I think 210° is the hottest I’ve seen. Granted, I’m not doing stop’n’go rush hour commuting in Phoenix in July. Your results may vary...
210 (100C) is perfectly fine. Oils can run much hotter than that. My car often gets to 115C.
 

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