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Old 05-19-2011, 12:14 AM   #1
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Pet Peeve: Poorly Designed Side Mirrors

I've noticed that newer cars are being designed with side mirrors that cannot be adjusted properly because they do not rotate to the right angle. Why is this? Because 99% of Americans don't know how to adjust their mirrors properly.

I don't have any blind spots. I can see entirely around any car I drive without a shoulder check because my mirrors capture everything. Blind spots are the result of mirrors being too narrow.

The general public sets their mirrors to where they can see their own car in their side mirror, giving them the exact same view of the rear view mirror.


(I actually don't entirely agree with this - the "too wide" would still be fine because it would give you the view of everything around you. The small 2-3 foot gap isn't even enough to miss a bike, especially if you lean your head as you look since it gives you a "sweep" )

On my mom's Yaris I was annoyed that when I tried adjusting the mirrors out further the physically would not move any further. Manufacturers in an attempt to make cars look more "sleek" are having mirrors folded inwards more, but this is not correct.

See the below links if your mirrors are not set up right.

This is how I set up mine (lean head until it touches window)
http://www.cartalk.com/content/featu...ors/index.html

http://www.linquist.net/motorsports/tech/mirrors/ (shows how most people have their mirror redundantly set up)

An interesting advantage is that by looking forward but glancing at the side mirror, I can lean to the right/left to make a sweeping view of everything from the mirrors view up to the side of my car.

I have never cut off anyone accidentally. I will periodically do shoulder checks but it only confirms what my mirrors told me.


I hope the FT-86/FR-S will have side mirrors that can be adjusted properly. Or I'll be pissed. Probably may not buy the car if it's not correct (serious). My visibility is pretty important to me, being a motorcycle rider as well.
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Old 05-19-2011, 12:31 AM   #2
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Hmmm. Yes, I agree. I set up my mirrors so that the edges of my rear-view is where the side mirrors begin. It's funny how EVERYONE'S car I've driven sets up their side mirrors so that they can see the side of their car. That's probably why so many people nearly crash when changing lanes on the freeway. For them, they HAVE to turn to check blind spots and if they get lazy... And that's a pretty dangerous design flaw if they angle the side mirrors in the way you describe. Manufacturers should keep the mirrors at close to 90 degrees to the car's body. Then if you want aerodynamics, add some plastic up front at sharp angles to decrease wind-resistance.

Edit: To make this more on-topic, let's discuss the size/bulk/angles of the side mirrors on the camouflaged test car.
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Old 05-19-2011, 12:33 AM   #3
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Should it be moved to off topic. It has nothing to do with the car. I mean, this topic is too general.
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Old 05-19-2011, 12:40 AM   #4
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Hmmm. Yes, I agree. I set up my mirrors so that the edges of my rear-view is where the side mirrors begin. It's funny how EVERYONE'S car I've driven sets up their side mirrors so that they can see the side of their car. That's probably why so many people nearly crash when changing lanes on the freeway. For them, they HAVE to turn to check blind spots and if they get lazy... And that's a pretty dangerous design flaw if they angle the side mirrors in the way you describe. Manufacturers should keep the mirrors at close to 90 degrees to the car's body. Then if you want aerodynamics, add some plastic up front at sharp angles to decrease wind-resistance.

Edit: To make this more on-topic, let's discuss the size/bulk/angles of the side mirrors on the camouflaged test car.
I agree. If you watch how other people drive, you may notice most people are terrified to change lanes, or they avoid it a lot. I'm sure this is why. Who wouldn't be scared to do something when they can't see around them?

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Should it be moved to off topic. It has nothing to do with the car. I mean, this topic is too general.
Sort of. I was trying to target it towards the development of this car.

I also noticed from the latest spy photo that the mirrors seem folded in too far.
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Old 05-19-2011, 01:01 AM   #5
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Ahh. I think we can adjust the mirror even the base is a bit off.
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Old 05-19-2011, 01:07 AM   #6
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Well even on my Celica my mirror itself sticks out funny compared to the housing. If I try to tilt the mirror a bit further I hit the limit...
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Old 05-19-2011, 01:14 AM   #7
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It happens to my IS too, but somehow, I have no problem with visibility or blind spot.
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Old 05-19-2011, 01:16 AM   #8
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Eh, its not a big issue unless you're driving a vert.

I drive my brothers FC Vert and freekin' hate it because of the ginormous blind spot with the top up. One of the very reasons I can't stand ragtops.
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Old 05-19-2011, 01:19 AM   #9
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I have problem driving my friend S2000 when it tops up too. It's damn annoying.
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Old 05-19-2011, 01:20 AM   #10
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Hah. Convertibles definitely have more visibility with the tops down...
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Old 05-19-2011, 01:48 AM   #11
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I don't think the visibility will be too bad; the panel next to the side windows looks big enough for a soldier check and the back window appears to be sufficient as well. I know almost every Nissan has bad blind spots, but drivers get used to it very quickly with a little adjustment. I personally have my side mirrors set up so I can barely see the paint of my car, but mostly the parallel lanes on either side.
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Old 05-19-2011, 01:53 AM   #12
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Yup.. I have a few nasty blind spots on my car even with my mirrors adjusted correctly. I have to bend my whole body to check over the shoulder... And to reverse.. yea. Foot always on clutch and always on breaks. Slowwwwwwwww backin' out.
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Old 05-19-2011, 01:59 AM   #13
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I'm glad most of you have your mirrors set up right.

I've been trying to make more people aware.
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Old 05-19-2011, 02:04 AM   #14
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Wait I thought you're supposed to look over your shoulder anyways? I do...I've mastered being able to turn really fast without having sunglasses fly off if I'm wearing them, lol.
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Old 05-19-2011, 02:06 AM   #15
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Wait I thought you're supposed to look over your shoulder anyways? I do...I've mastered being able to turn really fast without having sunglasses fly off if I'm wearing them, lol.
It's a good habit.

I definitely do it more since I bought my motorcycle.

But originally I stopped doing it as much since I was 100% confident in what I saw in my mirrors. It was damn near impossible for anyone to "creep" into my "blind spots" without me noticing.
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Old 05-19-2011, 02:10 AM   #16
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Wait I thought you're supposed to look over your shoulder anyways? I do...I've mastered being able to turn really fast without having sunglasses fly off if I'm wearing them, lol.
Don't need to look over the shoulder to pass a car when you just passed that car in either the right or left to cut them off in front of them. Just a glance at your side mirror and the side. :P

The only other time I look at my blind spot is when I'm still driving straight but haven't noticed any cars in the right or left. I'll just take a quick peak and change if anything.

ALSO. Its really hard to hear motorcyclists who have silent exhausts. :/

If you can see the whole front of the car in your side mirror you're good to go. Only other problem I have with my side mirrors are.. guys in their BRO-TRUCKS who have really bright HID lights. It reflects through my side and rearview. Gah.
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Old 05-19-2011, 07:32 AM   #17
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Lots of cars ave huge C pillars that cause massive blind spots regardless of how well your mirrors are adjusted too.
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Old 05-19-2011, 08:34 AM   #18
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If you are going fast enough you don't need mirrors.

But yeah I agree, most people don't know how to adjust them and aren't comfortable if they cant see part of their car in the mirror for reference. There are a lot of motorcycles down here though so I always double check and try to keep track of the vehicles around me.
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Old 05-19-2011, 08:52 AM   #19
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My Golf can be labelled "one of those" cars with crap mirror design. I'm 5'9" and even with the driver mirror adjusted full-out it's still not enough, plus the outer 1" is blocked by the damn mirror housing, how stupid! Add to that a B-pillar that flawlessly blocks the blind spot left by the crap mirror design and I definitely recommend assuming a Golf VI driver cannot see you in the typical semi-truck blind-spots.

Good mirror design and positioning [for all three] means there aren't any blind spots, which means you never have to turn your head to look behind you.
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Old 05-19-2011, 01:33 PM   #20
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I have one of those larger, concave Broadway mirrors that I got from one of the car shops at Yohan (Mitsuwa). It clips over the oem rear view mirror and helps a lot. It might not work on the rear view mirrors that have the auto dimming feature since they are thicker.

*Something like this*

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Old 05-19-2011, 03:30 PM   #21
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If this car had awful blind spots I would install some of these

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Old 05-19-2011, 03:52 PM   #22
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I really like the design of the Celica's rear view mirror because it is just wide enough to cover the entire view out of the rear window. It's a bit wider for extra view, but you can easily see out of the entire rear.
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