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Knog reinvents the humble bicycle bell

Australian company Knog, best known for its funky locks and lights, has taken to Kickstarter to crowdfund its new bell, called the Oi. In fact, it has surpassed its $20,000 target already, with $66,462 received with 27 days to go.

The Oi is unlike any traditional bicycle bell. The bicycle bell hasn't changed much at all since its invention in 1877, we’re all familiar with their shape and functionality. And that is part of the reason that many cyclists simply don’t fit one. 

knog oi bell  6.jpg

knog oi bell 6.jpg

The Oi bell takes a radical new approach. It’s a slim design that wraps around the handlebar and doesn’t protrude or take up much space. It’s so small that you would hardly notice it on the bars. It’s available in several finishes, or choose black to camouflage it against a black handlebar.

“We wanted to reinvent what the humble bicycle bell was,” says Knog founder Hugo. “We wanted to design a product that was sympathetic to all bikes, that looked great on vintage bikes, all the way through to road bikes.

knog oi bell  7.jpg

knog oi bell 7.jpg

Knog says it went through hundreds of design iterations before settling on the final design. The video also shows extensive work to get the pitch, length of ring and volume of the bell to sound just right. Knog adds that the bell has “…several pitch tones - one core and several supportive higher tones to ensure it's unmistakable and safely heard.”

But why is a successful company with a UK distributor taking to Kickstarter for its latest product? It reckons it can bring the product to market much faster than it normally would, and also adds that it want to test the product idea on Kickstarter. It seems Kickstarter has become something of a safety net, a way of launching a product and gauging interest before putting it into production.

knog oi bell  4.jpg

knog oi bell 4.jpg

There are two Oi bell sizes, a small for 22.2mm diameter bars, and the large for 31.8mm handlebars. Both have a 15mm wide clamp, with a single Phillips head screw securing the bell into place. The clamp expands to fit around the handlebars.  The bell also has a “cable management system” so it can be fitted over cables running along the handlebar. 

You can get a bell by pledging $26 for a standard bell with a choice of size and four finishes, with international delivery ($5 to the UK) and delivery in August. You can get a titanium version for $47.

knog oi bell  5 copy.jpg

knog oi bell 5 copy.jpg

Check it out at https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/-oi/oi-the-bike-bell-that-doesnt-lo...

David has worked on the road.cc tech team since July 2012. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds.

30 comments

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fukawitribe [1926 posts] 1 year ago
11 likes

Blimey, well there's something I never thought i'd say - what a nice looking bell.

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Poptart242 [185 posts] 1 year ago
4 likes

Done and backed. Bargain at roughly £15 too. Never thought I'd want a bell on my road bike but more than happy with this!

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STiG911 [255 posts] 1 year ago
2 likes

Proper bit of Genius, that.

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mcvittees73 [21 posts] 1 year ago
3 likes
Poptart242 wrote:

Done and backed. Bargain at roughly £15 too. Never thought I'd want a bell on my road bike but more than happy with this!

Agreed.  I'm amazed to say I want one!

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arckuk [62 posts] 1 year ago
2 likes

Prices are in Australian, rather than US dollars, which makes $31 delivered equivalent to ~ £15-16. Ordered one for my commuting (road) bike, I'm sure there's a rule that says one shouldn't, but they do look very nice!

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ridein [174 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

LOoking good, maybe it could subsistute for a few fork headset spacers.

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1961BikiE [354 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

Thinking of going for 2 of these which comes to about £30. Look great & stealth and a great sound. Sounds daft but it'll be a long wait for the delivery in August.

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kil0ran [400 posts] 1 year ago
4 likes

Extra points if it actually shouted Oi!

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brooksby [2400 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

Oh wow, but I want one of those: so shiny I wanna die!  yes   Kickstarter funding promised!

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philtregear [121 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

very nice.but i have found talking loudly/ shouting far more effective than a bell  when trying to alert others of my presence

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dazwan [323 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

I'd consider one if I didn't already have a pdw "Alexander Graham" on my bike.

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Mungecrundle [803 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

If Knog made lager - it would probably be the best lager in the world.

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The _Kaner [1121 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

ah well it's only €20 delivered...

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Redvee [333 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
philtregear wrote:

very nice.but i have found talking loudly/ shouting far more effective than a bell  when trying to alert others of my presence

 

My Hope rear hub works well when freewheeling whan approaching pedestrians on shared use pathes but I've backed the bell too, a bit gutted I missed the "xx of 500 option".

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Leviathan [2667 posts] 1 year ago
5 likes

Its in disguise; so when you get pulled over by the NSW polis, you can go ding right in their lug'oles, cheers mates.

 

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flybywire99 [4 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

It's a nice design and I'm sure it could sell well through the local bicycle shops. I don't see why this was brought out on Kickstarter. The writer of the article stated this as well. It doesn't appear to be that complicated of a design, a curved piece of metal and a couple of molded plastic pieces. I would assume a chinese manufacturing firm could knock those out pretty quickly.

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Dr_Lex [426 posts] 1 year ago
1 like
flybywire99 wrote:

[...] I don't see why this was brought out on Kickstarter[...]

I'm going with publicity and a guaranteed initial production run. The numbers pledged in the first 24 hours shows that there's a demand for a more discrete bell; I've signed up.

(Surprised there's not been a "bells are a £1 in Wilko" reply so far)

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KiwiMike [1298 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

Ordered the 5-pack. I'm after these because traditional bells just take up too much real estate. My wife's CX bike has narrow bars (because she's narrow) andf interrupter brake levers. Add in a light mount and there's genuinely sod-all room for anything else that overlaps. This design is genius, with the low profile it can sit underneath devices like Garmins, phones or wide lights and keeps lines clean. 

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WolfieSmith [1380 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

I have a bell on my around town bike and have to rattle my levers on the rest as I can't face fitting an ugly standard bell on them. 

These are beautiful and subtle. I want one now. Actually I want n+1 now which means I want 4.. Thank you Knog!

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WolfieSmith [1380 posts] 1 year ago
2 likes
Dr_Lex wrote:

 

 

(Surprised there's not been a "bells are a £1 in Wilko" reply so far)

[/quote]

 

Haha. Just a shame Rapha didn't come up with it. Can you imagine the quandary of that for the shabbies? 

 Mind you, it would be £150 not £15. 'Hand tooled in Switzerland in burnished aero grade titanium to a Philippe Starck design..' 

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TypeVertigo [351 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

Great evolution of the bell.

Still - I can't help thinking of a bell design that would somehow be easily activated regardless of whether your hands are on the tops, hoods, or drops. Anyone who could come up with that design, I'd wholeheartedly support.

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rjfrussell [390 posts] 1 year ago
2 likes
TypeVertigo wrote:

Great evolution of the bell.

Still - I can't help thinking of a bell design that would somehow be easily activated regardless of whether your hands are on the tops, hoods, or drops. Anyone who could come up with that design, I'd wholeheartedly support.

 

Saying "ding ding" loudly provides exactly this functionalty. 

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wycombewheeler [1099 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

With a really loud freehub like hope you don't even need that just stop peddling. The will know you are there, and no one will ever interpret it as aggressive.

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Poptart242 [185 posts] 1 year ago
1 like
wycombewheeler wrote:

With a really loud freehub like hope you don't even need that just stop peddling. The will know you are there, and no one will ever interpret it as aggressive.

 

My freehub as loud AF but it doesn't work so well in a city. Bells like this are more piercing above city noise, meaning far more likely to be heard. 

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ofathens [30 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

Disappointed not to find a bicycle bell that shouts 'Oi'. Click bait!

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xcstu [113 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

Want one so invested in the kick starter  3

 

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wycombewheeler [1099 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
Poptart242 wrote:
wycombewheeler wrote:

With a really loud freehub like hope you don't even need that just stop peddling. The will know you are there, and no one will ever interpret it as aggressive.

 

My freehub as loud AF but it doesn't work so well in a city. Bells like this are more piercing above city noise, meaning far more likely to be heard. 

A bell isn't going to do much there anyway, nio way any driver is going to hear a bike bell over the traffic in the metal box.  So trhey are really only of use oin shared foot/cycle paths.

Although just today I had a pedestrian step out onto the the road without looking, as there was no car noise, and as I soon as I stopped pedaling he looked aropund and moved more quickly out of my way.

I like these though, lovely minimalist style, but looking at my bars today, not too sure there is apce for one, also as I don't tend to ride with my hands on the tops, I question hpow useful they are on dropped bar road bikes.

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matthewn5 [1036 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

I had a normal bell on the LH drop just below the STI when I had Shimano. You could hit it from the hoods or the drops. Useful for cycling in town.

Now I have Campag the thumb shifter gets in the way. This won't. Signed up too!

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bendip [38 posts] 10 months ago
0 likes

Has anyone got their bell yet..? i ordered two through kickstarter, the last update i had was on Oct 4th, "bells due at fulfilment centres in the nxt couple of days"..just wondered if anyone had got theirs already

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tritecommentbot [2268 posts] 10 months ago
0 likes

Ordered a couple for the mythical touring bikes we don't have. Same boat as you - probably be a full year to actually get them.