By Chad de Alva

If I were a Business Management Professor, Doubletake Mirror would be a company that I would have my students study. If the name doesn’t ring familiar, Doubletake Mirror makes some of the best mirrors you can buy for your motorcycle – but a good product alone doesn’t make a company exceptional or worthy of study in Chad’s fictitious MBA class. What makes Doubletake noteworthy is that they have a good product, and they’ve been listening to customers, taking a critical look at their products, and looking for ways to make their product better. After a couple of years of development, Doubletake Mirror has succeeded in making our favorite mirrors even better. The new Doubletake Mirror System 2.0 delivers what the company and its customers have wished for without giving up anything that made Doubletake System 1.0 Mirrors incredible in the first place.

Doubletake Mirror came to market 14 years ago after founder Ned Suesse had a crash on his KTM Superenduro. While the crash was relatively minor, it proved to be a show-stopper for Ned’s ride: both mirrors and the clutch and brake master cylinders on which the mirrors were mounted had broken – which meant Ned was stranded. He knew there had to be a better way to build a motorcycle mirror. Something that didn’t have the limitations of OEM mirrors and something that would move in the event of a crash so that breaking a perch or master cylinder wouldn’t be anywhere near as likely to happen. What Ned came up with is the Doubletake Mirror System.

A complete Doubletake Mirror System consists of the actual mirror, a mounting arm, and a base ball kit. The Doubletake System currently has three types of mirrors: The Adventure Mirror, with that iconic coffin shape that we all know; the Dual Sport Mirror, which is round; and the Enduro Mirror, which is round with a longer stem. Doubletake offers two mounting arm lengths, which utilize a ball and socket joint at each end so riders can achieve the exact mirror position they want. Doubletake Mirrors use the OEM mirror mounting point(s) on the bike.

Using a Doubletake Mirror is as easy as it gets:
 •  Loosen the mounting arm by turning the thumb nut.
 •  Position the mirror where you want it.
 •  Snug the thumb nut back up.

You can set your mirror in the perfect position for a seated highway blast in seconds. When it’s time to head out on the dirt, you can give the mirror a quick twist to take a peek behind you while riding in the standing position. When things get spicy, and you just want the mirror(s) out of your way, you can fold them over your bars as needed for maximum freedom of movement. You can also easily remove the mirrors entirely when you want to stash them out of the reach of possible thieves. In the event of a crash, the two ball and socket joints allow the mirror to move out of the way instead of communicating damaging force to other parts on the bike, like a perch or master cylinder.

Installing Doubletake Mirrors is one of the first things we do to all of our bikes. After years of using various Doubletake Mirrors on everything from off-road and dual-sport bikes to big adventure bikes, we can say that they’ve proven to be excellent products. The new Doubletake System elevates this user experience with fundamental changes that can only come from listening to customer feedback and looking honestly at your products.

The new Doubletake System starts with an all new base ball. Doubletake wanted to make a ball mount kit that worked on all bikes without the need for stacked adapters. They did this by increasing the diameter of the base ball to 1.125 inches to accommodate a M10 socket head bolt that passes through the ball's center. The base ball mount kit that comes with each mirror includes 4 different bolts of varying lengths and thread pitch to secure the ball to any bike. An included lock washer is installed between the ball and the bike, preventing the system from spinning or coming loose. The ball is made from aluminum and overmolded with nitrile, so it won’t crush or lose its shape when you clamp an arm down on it. This new design is 42% stiffer and more durable than the old 1-inch ball.

Doubletake System "2.0" features two new arms that Doubletake designed and developed in-house to be the best arms made for mirrors. Available in two lengths: 3.5 inches (90mm) and 6 inches (150mm). The shorter arm is great for more aggressive riders, and the longer arm provides better rearward visibility, even around luggage on larger bikes. A longer thumb nut on both arms makes it easier to set the exact clamping force you want, and the thumb nut is offset on the arm to equalize rigidity in the system. In other words, the new arms are easier to adjust and do a better job staying where you set them, thanks to their design optimizations.

Additionally, in the process of developing the new arms, Doubletake made some revisions to the Adventure Mirror itself. While the warranty rate for the mirrors themselves has been tiny historically, a revision that strengthens the connection between the ball and housing on the Adventure Mirror will reduce that rate even further and provide a better product to the customer—a win all around.

All mirrors from the original Doubletake System 1.0 will work with the new System 2.0 arms and bases, and likewise, the Adventure Mirror 2.0 will work with 1.0 arms. The mirror end of the Doubletake System 2.0 arms will accept a 1-inch ball, so riders can still swap out a mirror for a camera, GPS, or other farkle as needed.

We performed back-to-back and side-by-side testing to appreciate exactly how System 2.0 has improved on System 1.0. Installing the new base ball kit is about as easy as it gets: simply select the correct screw(s) for your bike and snug everything up. There's no need to futz with adapters or having to torque multiple things. The System 2.0 base ball is a lower profile package and it does a better job of resisting pirouetting (spinning loose) from impacts, say if your mirror were to hit a branch while riding. A clamped down mirror and arm make for an excellent lever arm, and it’s not hard to knock a System 1.0 base ball loose if you try – the same can’t be said for a System 2.0 base ball kit.

The System 2.0 arms are a win. They look great, and when run side by side against a generic arm, the benefits of the System 2.0 arm are pretty obvious. The System 2.0 arms do a better job of staying where you set them than System 1.0 arms, which can move around a little bit when smashing through rough terrain. The slight increase in System 2.0 arm lengths is also a welcome change. When running one 2.0 mirror and one 1.0 mirror in a side-by-side comparison, the extra length and rigidity of System 2.0 provided better rearward visibility in terms of field of view and less vibration in the mirror. You don’t know how much better something can be until you A/B test it, and System 2.0 has System 1.0 beat, hands down.

Doubletake Mirror has delivered a textbook case study on how to improve on a good thing with their System 2.0. Doubletake System 1.0 worked very well, and there are legions of happy customers worldwide – yet there is always room to improve. By listening to customer feedback, taking a critical look at their current products, and taking their time to do it right and not break what folks loved to begin with, Doubletake Mirror has upped their game with System 2.0. The best has become better, and this update from Doubletake is now on sale and will work with your existing Doubletake Mirrors.

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