It’s no secret that cyclists are at a disadvantage when sharing the roads with motorized vehicles – not only do bikes offer less in the way of protection and speed than cars, but drivers often don’t even notice that they’re there. The Hornster, a bicycle featuring what is claimed to be the world’s loudest bicycle horn, was designed to bring attention to that fact.
The bike was designed by Yannick Read, who works for the UK’s Environmental Transport Association (ETA). The company provides insurance for cyclists, and wanted something that would publicize just how important it is for drivers (particularly drivers of big trucks) to acknowledge the presence of cyclists.
... and it’s a fair bet that The Hornster is capable of getting itself acknowledged. It features an Airchime KH3A triple air horn, which was taken from an American locomotive. That horn has been modified to run off of a scuba diving compressed air cylinder, which is mounted in the custom frame. If blasted at full volume (which is not being done in the video at the bottom of the page), it emits a stunning 178 decibels – according to ETA, that’s far louder than a transport truck’s horn, the take-off of an F-14, or the landing of a Concorde.
Should you like the cut of The Hornster’s jib, you can buy it for yourself. It went on sale last Thursday, priced at £4,995 (US$8,074). Needless to say, buyers will have to also budget for all the lawsuits brought against them by deafened drivers and pedestrians.
In a previous similar ETA campaign, Read created something called the BOND Bike – an “urban assault vehicle” that humorously included features such as a handlebar-mounted flamethrower.