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Snooper 6
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Darren
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Joined: 11/07/2002 14:36:40
Posts: 23848
Location: Hampshire, UK

PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2003 11:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Take a look at UK Speedtraps, www.ukspeedtraps.co.uk
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Skippy
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Joined: 24/06/2003 00:22:12
Posts: 2946
Location: Escaped to the Antipodies! 36.83S 174.75E

PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2003 1:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Supatramp, I used RADAR detectors for many years when I lived in a country where the Police are very, very nasty - all patrol cars have moving RADAR and they use cameras in discrete, unmarked cars. I brought the Bel 990i during a recent trip home and used it over several thousand miles of travelling, it easily paid for itself.

I have used it a bit here in the UK but not that often to be honest. I don't actually drive long distances that often and generally I know where I am going so I can spot the Gatsos. The RADAR detector doesn't work well on my motorbike which is where I need it more than my car. The bike is faster than the Police anyway. 8O Laughing

For reviews of detectors, check out Speed Trap Bible http://www.speed-trap.co.uk/ They have some good, straight information about what works and what doesn't. PocketGPS is much better informed on the GPS side of things, but the bible has some very good reviews of RADAR detectors and LASER jammers. Crucially, they have done tests with the co-operation of the Police which is rare.

Speed-Trap recommend the Bel990i (I agree that it is an excellent unit) which has now replaced by the Euro550. They are not cheap in the UK (300 quid), but you should consider buying one from the USA and save a lot of money. I don't accept this nonsense about the detector not being "tuned" to the UK RADAR frequencies. My detector is not a UK model and its performance is the same as the so called "special" UK models.

An important feature in the Bel is that you can select the bands you want to use according to which country you are in. This way you can disable the bands which are not in use so you can screen out most of the false alerts from the shop door openers, certain traffic lights, etc which will otherwise drive you mad. The Bel has a nice "City" feature where it beeps once when first it detects a RADAR signal and then mutes but keeps flashing and shows the increasing signal strength. There is also a nice "Dark" mode which is very discrete for use at night time.

Some cheap detectors don't give you enough warning to slow down. Gatsos generally only photograph the back of your car so the "driving towards a camera facing towards you" test is a bit of a nonsense. The most difficult test is "driving towards a gatso facing away from you" - this is how Gatsos work and it is the most difficult situation for the detector to operate under as it has to pick up a reflected signal. If you are overtaking a car and your detector only gives you 3 seconds warning of a Gatso up ahead then you are in big trouble. And they do like to put Gatsos at overtaking places too.

Darren reckons that a LASER detector may give you a warning if a vehicle in front of you is targeted. To be honest, I have not been unfortunate enough to be targeted with a LASER while speeding so I don't know. Perhaps in fairly heavy traffic you might have a chance, if you are the only vehicle in sight then you are nicked. Jammers cost several hundred.

Finally, the police use a lot of non-RADAR methods of measuring your speed (Truvelo, pursuit with calibrated speedo, LASER, SPECS, Vascar etc). I have also known Police in other countries to switch their RADAR off until they see a vehicle they want to target and then "zap" it and get an instant reading.

I hope all this hasn't made you paranoid. Drive Safe!
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Supatramp
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Joined: Nov 21, 2003
Posts: 38
Location: Scotland

PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2003 7:15 pm    Post subject: RADAR Reply with quote

Skippy,

Thanks for all that info, however, just how reliable is the info at Speed-traps.co.uk?? I've just visited and have'nt yet looked though it but they've got a competition on the home page which ended in June, and the latest news in "Latest News" is dated March!!!
Thanks again.
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David
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Dave
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Joined: Sep 10, 2003
Posts: 6460
Location: UK

PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2003 11:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Skippy wrote:
The most difficult test is "driving towards a gatso facing away from you" - this is how Gatsos work and it is the most difficult situation for the detector to operate under as it has to pick up a reflected signal. If you are overtaking a car and your detector only gives you 3 seconds warning of a Gatso up ahead then you are in big trouble. And they do like to put Gatsos at overtaking places too.


I had a GATSO flash me as I approached it from the front (opposite side of the road) the other day. A little perplexed as it's not a Truvello. I hadn't even reached the painted white lines. Hmmm, guess I'm going to have to flip a coin again, consult murphey's law and see what the Gods have to say.

Skippy wrote:
Darren reckons that a LASER detector may give you a warning if a vehicle in front of you is targeted. To be honest, I have not been unfortunate enough to be targeted with a LASER while speeding so I don't know. Perhaps in fairly heavy traffic you might have a chance, if you are the only vehicle in sight then you are nicked. Jammers cost several hundred.


I also have the Bel Euro 550 and I have experienced laser scatter from a copper sat in his car with a Vascar like laser pointing down the hill, I caught the laser scatter just around the bend as it was rebounding off cars, and knew it was a frequent hide out, and dropped my speed by 15mph and it did the trick. That was over a year ago, most forces don't use lasers now.
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Skippy
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Joined: 24/06/2003 00:22:12
Posts: 2946
Location: Escaped to the Antipodies! 36.83S 174.75E

PostPosted: Thu Dec 11, 2003 12:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dave wrote:
I had a GATSO flash me as I approached it from the front (opposite side of the road) the other day. A little perplexed as it's not a Truvello. I hadn't even reached the painted white lines.


I think Gatsos flash randomly just to harrass people from time to time. One flashed me the other day while I was doing about 20 MPH in a 30 zone behind two other cars. 8O Rolling Eyes

The common K-Band RADAR Gatso is only supposed to take a photo of traffic traveling away from the camera. They will flash at a vehicle approaching it face on, but I have been told that it won't take a photo. I have certainly seen motorcycles set them off plenty of times as they drove towards them. Wink Wink Often the vehicle is well out of the picture as the second photo is taken.

The other thing is that they are not supposed to take a photo if there is more than 1 vehicle in the picture. I have seen bikes travel through the camera, front-on at well over the trigger speed and nothing happens if there is a car coming the other way.
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