der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 25

Advantages of a Custom-Installed Radar Detector

T

hese days, it seems more and
more municipalities are using
radar and LIDAR (Light
Detection and Ranging, what most
drivers refer to as speed trap "laser")
to issue speeding tickets to people.
The reality here is that speeding
tickets are all about revenue for that
district. If it were an effective measure
for controlling average speed, then
you wouldn't feel like you were going
to get run over on I-95 when you are
already going 10mph over the speed
limit. There, I said it.
So, how does a person effectively guard against radar and laser
(LIDAR) based speed traps? Well, for
decades we did it with a portable
detector that we placed on our dash.
Unfortunately, they are of no value
when it comes to laser-based radar.
Let me explain. When a traditional
radar gun is being used, the radar
waves travel way past the vehicles
being targeted and your radar detector
picks it up, giving you an opportunity
to slow down. With laser, everything
is different. It is a narrow beam of
light that is only 21" wide at 1000' and
it reflects back off the car that was
targeted. What that means to you is
your portable detector won't go off
until you are being targeted. So, in
essence, a portable detector is only

alerting you to the fact that you are
about to get a ticket.
However, there is hope - cue the
entrance of the custom-installed radar
detector. While it has many cosmetic
advantages in that it is integrated into
the vehicle, it has two main perform-

mal radar, a custom-installed system
can use a larger receiver, improving
range.
Some other benefits of a
custom-installed laser and radar
detector are the cosmetics. You will
have nothing hanging off your dash

By Mark Miller, Tech Talk

(Top) A front mounted laser shifter is barely noticeable. (Above) An
Escort display and controller custom-installed in the car's center console.
ance advantages. First, with regards
to LIDAR, a good system comes with
a laser-shifter or defuser. When it
senses a laser beam, it immediately
fires back powerful beams of light that
prevent the laser gun from getting a
reading. And yes, it is legal in 45
states, including Maryland, Delaware,
Pennsylvania, and West Virginia.
If you live in Virginia or Washington,
D.C., they are illegal and you can
surely reach out to me for more information. Second, with regards to nor-

so there is no invitation to theft.
Also, in the event you get pulled over,
there is nothing visible to the officer,
which is another plus. The system
will turn on and off with the ignition,
meaning you don't have to worry
about driving up the road and forgetting to activate it.
One extremely important thing
to consider when getting one of these
systems installed is the caliber of the
shop and their attention to detail when
performing the install and testing the

system. Our shop has actual police
radar and laser guns that we use to
test all of our systems once the job is
complete. When it comes to placement and aiming of the receivers and
shifters, you don't want a shop to cut
corners to speed up the install or
arrive at a lower price. You are making a significant investment, so be
sure you are getting all the performance possible.
Finally, buy the system from the
shop that is going to do the install.
It is the only way you can guarantee
they will be familiar with the product
and offer service after the sale on the
product itself.
As always, if you have any
questions on this category, feel free to
send me an email or call the store.
I am here to help our fellow BMW
owners.

(Above( A radar receiver mounted
behind the front bumper is hidden
from view.

Mark Miller is the owner of Westminster Speed & Sound, an award-winning vehicle customization facility in
business since 1969. He is the Head Judge in the Mobile Electronics category for the SEMA New Product
Awards, a two-time board member of the Mobile Electronics Retailers Association, and an 11-time recipient of
the Top 50 Retailers Award by ME magazine. Mark is an avid BMW enthusiast and owner. You can reach him
at mark@WestminsterSpeed.com or by calling his store at 410-857-5300

March I April

25


https://www.westminsterspeed.com/ https://www.westminsterspeed.com/

der Bayerische March/April 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of der Bayerische March/April 2020

Intro page
PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE
THE STEERING COLUMN
CALENDAR OF EVENTS
COMING EVENTS
Join Us at the May HPDE at Summit Point’s Jefferson Circuit
2019’s Penultimate DIY Event for Ultimate Driving Machines at BMW of Sterling
2019 Tours Recap and 2020 Preliminary Tour Schedule
November DIY at Bimmer Werks
Driving Through A Looking Glass And Other Strange Sights
December DIY at Craftsman Auto Care
Meet the BMW CCA Raffle Grand Prize Winner: NCC’s Ben Wibisono
Advantages of a Custom-Installed Radar Detector
2020 BMW X2 M35: The BMW GTI
The Habits of Highly Effective Autocrossers: Habit Nine
NEW MEMBERS LIST
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - Intro page
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - Cover1
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - Cover2
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 1
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - THE STEERING COLUMN
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - COMING EVENTS
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 5
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - Join Us at the May HPDE at Summit Point’s Jefferson Circuit
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 2019’s Penultimate DIY Event for Ultimate Driving Machines at BMW of Sterling
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 8
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 9
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 2019 Tours Recap and 2020 Preliminary Tour Schedule
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 11
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - November DIY at Bimmer Werks
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 13
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 14
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - Driving Through A Looking Glass And Other Strange Sights
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 16
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 17
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 18
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - December DIY at Craftsman Auto Care
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 20
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 21
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - Meet the BMW CCA Raffle Grand Prize Winner: NCC’s Ben Wibisono
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 23
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 24
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - Advantages of a Custom-Installed Radar Detector
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 2020 BMW X2 M35: The BMW GTI
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 27
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 28
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 29
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 30
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - The Habits of Highly Effective Autocrossers: Habit Nine
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 32
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 33
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 34
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - NEW MEMBERS LIST
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - 36
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - Cover3
der Bayerische March/April 2020 - Cover4
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