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Last month, we got a pair of reflective mudflaps from Rainy Day Biking. They come in red or white.
A front mudflap keeps road grime away from your feet and downtube. The closer to the ground it reaches, the better it works. On the rear wheel, a mudflap dramatically decreases the “rooster tail” effect. This is mostly a courtesy to those who may happen to be riding behind you, but with these mudflaps, you’re also giving a highly visible clue to your place on the road. These mudflaps shine like daylight.
I mounted them to the Planet Bike Cascadia fenders on my daily commuter. Admittedly, these fenders already have integrated mudflaps, but I’ve had several other pairs of flapless fenders. I bolted the front mudflap to the outside of the stock one, because the stock one is so long it would almost completely obscure the reflective material. I found that mounting it this way allows the reflective mudflap to move around a bit. During my testing, I drilled a second hole and added another bolt to hold it sturdily into place.
I mounted the rear mudflap in the recommended way, inside the fender (and inside the rear mudflap, on my bike) which resulted in a much sturdier mounting due to the way the internal curvature of the fender grips the new mudflap.
To test, I even whipped out my cheap camera phone, which features a tiny, dim LED as a “flash”. This dim light was more than enough to completely wash out the photo. To the right, you can also see the reflective piping of my seat wedge.
I also leaned my bike up against a sign in my parking lot and hit it with my car’s low-beams from about 100 yards. They light up just as bright as my PlanetBike SuperFlash tail light, but cover much more area. Reflective material shouldn’t be used in place of proper lighting, but every bit helps. These, combined with my reflective vest, SuperFlash and FlashBak safety light makes for a bike that’s really difficult to ignore.