I don't think there is one cure all way to be more safe on a bike. I like to be more visible by wearing high viz jackets and paying attention to be in the part of the lane so that I can easily be seen. The only time I think having a little louder pipe would help is when riding just off the rear quarter panel of a car and they pull over in front of you without looking. Having said that, I don't think having a obnoxiously loud exhaust is the answer. Its as simple as not riding besides cars for any length of time (either pass them or stay behind them). Also, when passing them be ready in case they turn the wheel and come into your lane, I like to keep an eye on the front tire while passing. I think this is more of a concern in the city, on the highway always make sure they see you from behind before you pass them. Lets not forget the bike in this equation. Riding this bike makes you more safe because one of the reasons that cars don't notice bikes is because they catch them way too quickly. Since you can't speed down the road at over 100mph, you will catch the car more slowly and they will be more likely to see you.
Having a loud exhaust and being a complete jerk is never a good answer.
no loud pipes do not save lives. loud pipes sounds awesome!
There is no way to prove this one way or the other. Everyone has their opinion and anecdotes for both sides. Improved looks, sound and weight are the plusses. Pissing off car drivers is the down side. Well worth it IMHO.
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it is possible to have the best of both worlds here..
using my old 750/4 with 4 into 1 exhaust, which could 'moan
softly' at low and traffic speeds, not offensively, yet could also
emit a sound that caught the attention of nearby drivers,
in front at stoplights etc by simply blipping it to higher revs
a couple of times.. again not really offensive, just loud enough
to enter their consciousness as they nodded off to sleep
or lost themselves in make-up application..
this isnt a really loud offensive noise likely to cause an aggressive
response in disgruntled cagers strapped into their boxes, but
it is worthwhile catching their attention with a more or less
'normal' traffic/road noise.. the rational reasonable drivers
would appreciate knowing youre there,, and the others
must be considered threats to your welbeing, whereby
a little, short term, attention getting noise is justified..
with that 750/its 4into1's i could still 'sneak' away
without arousing anyone in early morning departures etc,,
simply by riding at low rpm thru the gears,, a good habit
by the way for that initial shift from bi-pedal primate
to active motorcyclist...
admittedly the 750 would make itself heard when overtaking
at high speed say, where the gentle moan became a loud howl,
but even then, its worth it just to let that mack truck know
youre coming past.. not, r not suggesting riding this way
around the local neighbourhood or early in the morning[!]
It seems the speed of sound is much slower than the speed of vision. Add bad driving, hand held communication devices, on top of loud car radios and people wearing ear buds-and it's no contest. "Loud pipes" are just loud pipes.
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