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Garmin Varia radar modification for better situational awarenes = better SAFETY?

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Garmin Varia radar modification for better situational awarenes = better SAFETY?

Old 11-29-21, 11:50 AM
  #51  
GrainBrain
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Originally Posted by Hypno Toad View Post
This is great, thanks for sharing!

Like WhyFi, I use a Bluetooth earbud for turn-by-turn directions on my rides and would love to hear Varia alerts in my earbud!!

I just added the app and will pair it to my Varia to test on my afternoon ride.
Originally Posted by WhyFi View Post
Let me know if it works! Getting a new trainer has really made me a wuss, so I haven't ridden outside in weeks.
What version of the varia do you have? I think mine was the second version, I got it on sale. I'll double check but I don't think mine has Bluetooth, just ant+
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Old 11-29-21, 12:17 PM
  #52  
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Originally Posted by GrainBrain View Post
What version of the varia do you have? I think mine was the second version, I got it on sale. I'll double check but I don't think mine has Bluetooth, just ant+
Damn - that's right. I, too, have a RTL510, which is ANT+; the 515 added BT. Oh well, so much for that.
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Old 11-29-21, 12:51 PM
  #53  
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Originally Posted by GrainBrain View Post
What version of the varia do you have? I think mine was the second version, I got it on sale. I'll double check but I don't think mine has Bluetooth, just ant+
I hadn't thought of that ... I'm sure mine is ANT+ only, it's first gen Varia


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Old 11-29-21, 10:38 PM
  #54  
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I've been using the Varia radars since they came out. Fantastic product.

I use it in combination with a mirror on my glasses. I normally scan just like one would in a car, but the Varia warning is when I look in my mirror to see if the car is going wide, and if not, then I'm planning an escape. At 60mph, 400 feet is 4-5 seconds to evaluate the situation and do something about it. That's a lot of time.

The only caveat with the Varia and where one has to be careful, is that radar is not an absolute indication of something behind you. It's an indication of something behind you that is going *faster* than you. If it's pacing you, it will drop off the display. If it's going slower than you, it will drop off the display. Bear that in mind, especially in urban traffic. It is measuring speed differences not distance per se - you don't want to find that out the hard way as you make a left turn in front of a pacing vehicle behind you.

Finally, since I typically listen to podcasts while riding, I also turn on the Varia app. That way I'm getting solid audio notifications since every bike computer on the planet has the most ridiculous cheap beepers known to man. The app is a big improvement and, that way, it also interleaves nicely with my podcasts audio. It only works with the two newer versions that support BTLE (RTL515 and RTR315).

All in all, it's a fantastic addition to safety while riding.
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Old 11-30-21, 06:11 AM
  #55  
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We'll I guess it was still worth the $50 I saved over the Bluetooth version! I love data but I don't know how much I'd glean from it really.

Another somewhat disturbing quirk I've noticed is vehicles with radar detectors or jammers -- they'll get quite close before being detected.

I'll get false positives from what I'm guessing are radar equipped devices around buildings -- don't know if it's for security or automated door opening or general acknowledgement but it happens at the same spots near the numerous Ag operations I ride by.
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