For more than a century, cyclists have been accustomed to alerting people in their way by using a bulky bell on their handlebar. Bicycles have undergone several transformations over the years, but the handy bell still remains the same. Australian bike accessories company Knog is re-introducing the bike bell with a new, modern look and a different sound.
Called the “Oi,” this sleek, curved piece of metal hugs the average 22.2mm handlebar, with spacers that come in the pack. In some ways, it’s a discreet design, but it stands out among other types of bells. Knog’s team of engineers tested out numerous types of metals to obtain the perfect sound, volume, and length of ding. The bell is built with a spring-loaded actuator on the mount, allowing the ‘ding’ to sound firm and fast. This gives the bell’s sound a good balance of volume and and longevity.
The Oi bell has different pitch tones, consisting of one core and several higher tones that ensure the bell to be heard. “We realized when we started cutting up bits of metal and pipes you could hit one of them and it would make a beautiful sound, then you would clamp it to the handlebars and it would make a dull thwap,” says Knog co-founder Hugo Davidson in an interview with Wired. “We wanted something that was a little more harmonic. The loudest bell would be so big you couldn’t put it on your handlebars.”
Oi comes in five different styles, including brushed aluminium, brass-plated, copper-plated, and black, with the premium style coming in titanium. The singing bike bell surpassed its $14,247 goal within 24 hours of its March 1st Kickstarter campaign launch. You can pre-order the Oi bike bell for $19.