Bicycling can be an expensive activity. The best equipment often comes with a price tag that’s beyond many riders’ budgets. While the $49 Spurcycle bell certainly ain’t cheap, it’s generally regarded as the finest bicycle bell available at any price. And after using one for more than a year, I’d have to agree. My personal Spurcycle bell has seen duty on every single bike I’ve ridden during that period. Bikes may come and go, but that bell–like my favorite saddle and pedals–always gets transferred from bike to bike.
Born of an extremely successful Kickstarter campaign, the Spurcycle bell remains largely unchanged since its introduction in 2014. The bell’s packaging and presentation is sophisticated, but at the same time, humble. Slide open the box and you might wonder how a bell of such diminutive size could possibly be loud enough to be effective. One flick of the Spurcycle’s ringer is all it takes to erase any doubts as to the tiny bell’s ability to alert those around you.
What is it that sets the $49 Spurcycle bell apart from the competition? Easy–the tone (one of my riding pals described it as, “the sound of angels.” The bright tone is loud enough that even the most distracted riders and walkers will take notice. Even better, though, is that tone’s sustain (Spurcycle claims that it’s 3x longer). Some bells may be almost as loud, but their sound trails off almost immediately. With the Spurcycle, you can ring the bell from farther away, which gives other users ample time to react accordingly.
Is a $49 bicycle bell a bit extravagant? Yes and no. Spurcycle copies can be found for about one-tenth of the cost. Friends report that the knock-offs’ sound and overall quality, however, is nowhere near what you find on the real thing. Personally, I see the Spurcycle bell as an investment. Over the past ten years I’ve spent more way than $50 on an assortment of bells that didn’t sound–or look–as good as the Spurcycle.
Disclosure: Spurcycle provided product samples at no cost, but offered no other form of compensation in exchange for editorial coverage.