Location, Location, Location: WHERE to Mount your Phone
For various reasons (such as when I’m on call for my firefighting job) some of us have to take our phones with us when we ride. Others just choose to. To do it safely, the goal should be:
- to mount your phone securely (you don't want to be worrying about it falling off!)
- in a location (handlebar, brake/clutch, mirror, windshield, etc) that
- doesn't interfere with driving, and
- where you can easily glance at it
In my last article I focused on (1). In this article, I address (2), because it’s just as much a contributor to (3) and (4).
Because we have customers riding everything from scooters to sportbikes to cruisers (and even Spyders), the answer to the question “where should I mount my phone” is going to be different for each rider. But here are some location options (with pros and cons).
HandlebarThis is a great choice for cruisers, most of which tend to have standard (i.e. round) handlebars. You don’t have to mount in the center area if you don’t have the space (although it does look nice there!) - at least not with Leader mounts. Thanks to the way we designed our mounting bracket, you can even mount completely vertical if that’s what works for you!
The thing to be aware of (like many things related to motorcycles) is space. Sometimes the handlebar is ‘tight’ to the tank, or has cables running all along it, or has other obstacles to getting your phone in a good position.
Thanks to our super-slim URBAN Handlebar Bracket, even motorcycles with very little room in the “cockpit” area can mount a phone on the handlebar.
Another thing to consider is whether mounting on the handlebar will pull your attention down too far; you want to be looking out as much as possible. Not like this guy!
Brake or ClutchI like the URBAN Brake/Clutch Brackets because they work on so many kinds of motorcycles. Simply put: if you have two bolts that hold your brake or clutch assembly together - even if they point up rather than out - you can use them to mount your phone!
There’s no chance the windshield or the gas tank will be in the way which is good. And the bracket is slim and unobtrusive. However, depending on how wide your handlebars go, some riders may find this puts the phone too far to one side or the other.
MirrorMy personal favorite is mounting to the mirror stem. Why? Because it’s up a little higher (i.e., closer to my eyeballs) and more in line with where I want to be looking as I ride. Our URBAN Mirror Stem Bracket is also very low-profile; when my phone is not on the bike, all you see is a 1.25-inch square.
WindshieldWhat can I say about this? There isn’t any other location that puts your phone more front-and-center than mounting to your windshield.
There are, of course, windshields where this isn’t practical (such as on sportbikes) or where the curve of the windshield isn’t conducive to what you’re trying to do (which is to easily see the phone screen while riding). But for those who have a windshield with the brace across it, this is a great option.
If you’re considering a Windshield Mount, take a quick test ride on your motorcycle and pay special attention to how much vibration is generated from the street, through the bike and into your windshield. Some bikes (yes I’m thinking of Harleys here!) have so much vibration it can scramble your phone’s brains (although it won’t affect our mounts, which are solid stainless steel!).
- Tracey Cramer