Introduction: Magnetic Bicycle Wrist Mirror

Picture of Magnetic Bicycle Wrist Mirror

Sometimes I ride in a really urban setting and I need to see what's behind me but I don't wear a helmet (I know) so I can't mount a mirror there, and I hate those goofy looking eyeglass mounted mirrors, and I break the ones mounted on my bike handle bars so I came up with something else.
Here is a bike mirror you can mount in a few seconds on your wrist watch band or a wrist sweat band (though sweat band requires extra stiff mounting surface of some kind else the mirror will jiggle).
To use it, just raise your hand to the level of your eyes ( a line from Phantom of the Opera - my favorite opera).
When you don't need it anymore, just slide it off sideways and the magnet under the watch band will come with it. Then just store it on one of the steel rails under the bicycle seat.

Great Idea: (thanks for this idea to Kudzu) If you don't like the idea of using magnets, use velcro to secure your mirror. I'm thinking of using this on my gloves for the winter as my wrist watch will be hiding under my coat sleeve.

Note 1: you can also wear it in your cubicle.
Note 2: you can't shake this thing off.
Note 3: magnets are good for you right? And it doesn't seem to effect my watch at all - unless you have a built in watch compass - definitely affects that.
Note 4: for you girls that need to check your makeup while your riding or you guys to see if anything is in your mustache - this mirror is the fix - can't do that with a helmet or glass mount mirror and it is real tricky to do while you are riding wth a handle bar mount mirror. And a convex mirror takes about 10 years off your age.
Note 5:  I went out biking and forgot my watch - but no problem - I just picked my magnetic mirror off my bell, where I store it, used it when I needed it and then put it back - wrist band optional.
Caveat:  I will be the first to admit this mirror mount is not the final solution - a definite downside of it is that the rider is inherently unstable when using it by having only one hand on the handlebars. It is just another option. Also, forgive my rants and unkind remarks about other mirror mounts - I am an opinionated, crotchety old 60 year old (59.5 actually) unlikely to change my ways. 

Required materials:
- two strong neodymium magnets around 1.5 centimeters in diameter - or bigger if you don't trust their strength
- 2 pack blind spot round stick-on wide angle convex mirrors (do yourself a favor and put the second mirror of the 2 pack on your car)
- duct tape

Now I seem awfully set against eyeglass and helmet mounts - the benefit of these is that they are always there and you don't have to take a hand off the handlebar - but then I learned to do that when I learned  hand signals - we do use hand signals right (who am I to preach - I don't even usually wear a helmet)?
This mirror also works on my unicycle - fancy that.

Update Aug 18: Just saw that there was already a KickStarter project out there for a wrist mount mirror. Nothing new under the sun I guess. Not magnetic though.
Update Sep 8: Saw this commercial wrist mirror product:

Step 1: Mount Magnet on Mirror

Picture of Mount Magnet on Mirror

Remove the adhesive protective covering from the backside of the mirror.
Plant a neodymium (powerful) magnet in the center of the adhesive area.
Cover the magnet and adhesive area with a square piece of duct tape.

Step 2: Using the Mirror

Picture of Using the Mirror

Slip a second magnet under your wrist band and set the mirror over the top of this one (the band is between the two magnets).
These magnets are really strong and you can't shake the mirror off your watch band.

When you want to use it, raise it up to eye level. Works great!

When you are finished with it, slide it sideways as you poke the magnet under the wristband out with a finger at the same time - the magnets will then stick to each other. Then store it on the bike. I store mine on my big chrome bell.
To easily separate the magnets when you want to use the mirror, slide them sideways from each other.


Uncle Kudzu (author)2013-09-06

Brilliant! Why didn't I think of this? Gonna make mine using Velcro. Thanks so much for sharing!

JimRD (author)Uncle Kudzu2013-09-06

Great idea Kudzu. If you don't mind I would like to mention your idea in my instructable (coming from you of course).

Uncle Kudzu (author)JimRD2013-09-07

No need for credit, Jim. I'm just glad you shared this 'ible. If the Velcro idea is useful to someone else, then all the better.

saviofernandes1098 (author)2015-06-10

wow !!!!! what an amazing idea

Susitna (author)2014-08-07

What a great idea (although not enough for me to pay $40)! I need knee replacement and will make one to use on my sit on walker. Although one should not move the walker while sitting, I cheat frequently, especially when minding my flea market booth. Pushing backwards is easier on my knee. Thank you for the inspiration!

JimRD (author)Susitna2014-08-07

Now thats a good idea and safer. Yeah, commercial products are expensive, especially in the medical equipment field. Gotta love DIYing.

3366carlos (author)2014-05-18

nice. what type of mirror and where did u buy it from?

vanadium13 (author)2013-12-19

What a great idea !

JimRD (author)vanadium132013-12-21

Thank you! Not riding my bike much now that winter is here.

vanadium13 (author)JimRD2013-12-23

Yeap me too and i have the same watch too :)

JimRD (author)2013-09-06

Great idea Kudzu. If you don't mind I would like to mention your idea in my instructable (coming from you of course).

JimRD (author)2013-09-06

Great idea Kudzu. If you don't mind I would like to mention your idea in my instructable (coming from you of course).

CobraSparrow (author)2013-08-19

I just finished making this and it works great.

JimRD (author)CobraSparrow2013-08-20

I have been waiting for someone to do it and your it. Thanks.

flyingpuppy (author)2013-08-15

Awesome idea! I don't know how people ride without mirrors!

JimRD (author)flyingpuppy2013-08-16

Yeah - my neck is getting too old to turn that far.

Shiseiji (author)2013-08-14

Awesome! I put a pair of Velo Orange porteur handlebars on my new commuter bike and getting a mirror in a decent spot has been tough, I have a nice scratch from it hitting the top tube. Going to give this a try. Bought the bike in April and the Sunday before it was delivered tore my meniscus. I'm just now getting back in the saddle for short rides.

LOL, I pulled out my old G Shock to time my 1st ride the other day so I wouldn't over do. Much older than yours, but the thing was still working. Must be at least 11 years old.

JimRD (author)Shiseiji2013-08-14

Sometimes pain is no gain. Good luck.
I'm glad someone is going to try this. I'm just waiting to hear how others fair with it. I'm hoping the consensus is that it is at least more useful than no mirror at all. Anything less than that will be embarrassing.

ToolboxGuy (author)2013-08-13

Brilliant! Can be stored on the bike for anytime use!
PS -
I don't recommend magnets if you're dirt biking - it picks up all of the iron fines out there in nature, and they're not easy to clean off without a more powerful sacrificial magnet, or an electromagnet.

JimRD (author)ToolboxGuy2013-08-14

Yeah, you will probably knock it off anyway if your dirt biking. The last time I was on a trail I was a young man.

hay_jumper (author)2013-08-13

G-Shock nation, y'all.

JimRD (author)hay_jumper2013-08-13

Too expensive for my tastes - mine cost $16 - including the 10 year battery. But hey, we're in the same Casio family - I'm just a poorer cousin.

riff raff (author)2013-08-13

Cool idea. And good choice on the Casio!

JimRD (author)riff raff2013-08-13

The watch for connoisseurs - plus it has a 10-year battery and I intend to use every bit of it.

rof (author)2013-08-13

I've been off my bike for about 9 months with knee trouble and went out for a short ride today for the first time. I've started wearing glasses and realised on the way back that a wee mirror on the glasses would be great. I found spectacle mirrors through google but the comments weren't good and the price rather high, so imagine my pleasure when I find this Instructable just a few hours later - what great timing !.

Many thanks.

JimRD (author)rof2013-08-13

I hate to diss spectacle and helmet mirrors but they are so precarious. Check out Note 5 - you really don't have to wear it all.

mrmkurtz (author)2013-08-13

What a clever idea! I especially like how low profile and stealthy it is. I've long realized the value of having a mirror while riding in an urban environment, but frankly haven't used one for years since I hate the look of these appendages sprouting out of your helmet :¬D) Well done!

JimRD (author)mrmkurtz2013-08-13

"Clever" - oh I feel my head swelling. Thank you.

jeroenbb (author)2013-08-13

I've got to try this once I get my new recumbent bicycle. Your hands are more or less on eye level already on recumbents with over seat steering, so with a little luck I don't even need to raise my wrist.

Thanks for the inspiration!

HollyMann (author)2013-08-10

Great idea - excellent instructable - although you might want to wear a helmet (but you know) :) LOVE IT! Very creative!

JimRD (author)HollyMann2013-08-10

Thank you. It does seem kind of strange at first but I do use this mirror and forget that it's even there.
Yes, in this city I really need to wear a helmet. I actually had to help a man who was thrown from his motorcycle and lying bleeding on the side of the road until the ambulance arrived. He was not wearing a helmet and he suffered a terrible head injury.
I will work on that.

About This Instructable




Bio: I am an American teaching English at Shangluo University, Shaanxi. I like making machines that do interesting but fairly useless things - I call them Quixotic ... More »
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