*** June 8, 2009 update below the main article. Check it out!
I just installed the Pro Pad Mini-Beast Air Horn on my Harley Davidson Electra Glide and all I can say is this little beast is truly LOUD!
You can check out the Mini-Beast Air Horn at the Pro Pad website by clicking here now.
This self contained unit will fit on most Harley Davidson motorcycles, and can be fitted to metric and other types of motorcycles. The most unique feature of this air horn which sets it apart from other air horns is the fact that the air compressor and horn are all contained in a stainless steel cover that is not much bigger than a stock Harley Davidson cow bell horn cover. This horn uses the stock horn button, which is to be expected on any aftermarket horn! I would never buy or install an aftermarket horn which did not use the stock motorcycle horn button.
Other types of air horn systems require you to mount trumpets or some other sounding device on the motorcycle somewhere, and then run an air hose from the trumpets to an air compressor. You then have to find a place on the motorcycle to mount or hide the air compressor, which is a hassle.
The Mini-Beast air horn is self contained in the stainless steel cover. Easy!
The other systems I looked at were also much bigger and take up too much room on the bike. I like the fact that the Mini-Beast not only fits in the stock horn position, but it actually compliments the looks of the big V-Twin engine in the Harley.
You may ask why I decided to put an air horn on my Harley; simple; stock motorcycle horns are basically worthless, especially at highway speeds. A loud air horn gives motorcyclist a LEGAL way of getting a cagers attention even with their windows rolled up, and even when they are on the phone. This is a way of getting noticed without having deafening and illegal loud open pipes on your bike.
I will tell you what, at 128 decibels this Mini-Beast will not only legally get cagers attention; it will shock them! Did I say this thing is loud……….
The installation of the Mini-Beast Air Horn was basically no problem at all because everything I needed to install the horn was contained in the package. The package contained the horn itself, which was pre-mounted in its own stainless steel cover, a wire harness, and large and small tie wraps.
The wire harness itself contains an in line fuse, and a relay, which prevents any damage from being done to the motorcycle if the horn shorts out or goes bad. The relay and the fuse are already connected right out of the box. All of the connections are made with a spade connector, so you could disconnect the relay from the harness if you wanted to. There is no reason to do this unless you wanted to put the relay in some weird position. I installed the small relay into a position in front of the battery. There was plenty of room.
/>The installation process was a snap. I started off by flipping the engine kill switch on the handle bars, and removing the seat. I then removed the stock horn, and disconnected the two spade wire connectors that lead to the stock horn. I then proceeded to route the wire harness along the frame to underneath the gas tank to the stock horn wires.
The only issue I had with this part of the installation was that I wanted a clean look without any wires showing. The way I accomplished this was to jack up my Electra Glide with a motorcycle jack, so that I could get to the bottom of the gas tank, and route the wiring harness, so that it would not be too close to the Engine, and so that it would follow the lines of the stock horn button. Jacking up the bike is not necessary for this install, but I am a stickler for details. With the bike jacked up it is easier to look underneath and to work. I loosely tie wrapped the harness at strategic locations using the supplied tie wraps.
Once I got the harness where I wanted it, I then loosened the bolts on the battery just enough to slip on the u-shaped slotted connector for the positive and negative part of the harness that connects to the battery. I then re-tightened up the bolts, making sure that the wiring harness connectors did not slide off of the battery connection bolts when tightening them back up. It was real fast and easy. I did not have to completely remove the battery cables to install the horn wires; they just slip on the bolt, once the bolt is loosened.
I then made the 4 electrical connections necessary at the horn. The connections are from the two wires that are hanging after you remove the stock horn, and from the two in the Mini-Beast Harness. All of the connections are plug in spade connectors, except for one which uses a round male, female connector from the harness to the horn. It was all plug and play with no crimping or anything like that required; just the way I like it.
Once the connections were made, I mounted the Mini-Beast loosely onto the motorcycle.
I tie wrapped the two wires that come from the Mini-Beast Harness, to the stock horn wires, with small black tie wraps that were included in the kit.
I then took the 4 wires that connect together in back of the mini-beast and individually wrapped them with electrical tape, and then taped the whole bundle to together and stuffed it behind the Chrome Mini-Beast Cover. I probably went a little overboard here, but with electrical connections, I want to make sure that water will not get in and cause a short or something.
I then slowly lowered the motorcycle from the jack, flipped the kill switch on the handlebars to the run position, and fired her up. After a few seconds I hit the horn switch and WOW; the horn worked and was LOUD!
After ensuring that the horn worked, I cut the engine off, and tightened up the horn so that it was solidly mounted on the motorcycle. I then fully tightened and trimmed the tie wraps, and re-installed the seat.
I then took the motorcycle on a little spin through my neighborhood raising hell with the horn. I went up to the mountains, and rode around to ensure that the horn was solidly mounted and to ensure that the harness stayed in place.
This particular horn is a little bit bigger than stock, but it does not interfere with riding at all. In other words, I could not feel it against my leg in a normal riding position. If I purposefully pressed my knee into it, I could feel it. I could also do the same thing with the stock horn.
I have heard that earlier versions of this horn had problems with the mounting bracket breaking. This problem has now been fixed. I have the latest version of this horn and the bracket looks solid to me. There is a very large black plastic spacer that screws onto the stock Harley mounting stud, between the motorcycle and the horn. This thing looks like it will absorb lots of vibration. The horn has a 1 year warranty.
This horn does not sound like a big rig truck, but it is very loud. It sounds more like a car horn on steroids.
If you want to see a video of what the Mini-Beast sounds like click here now. Please note that the Mini-Beast in the video looks like it using the old mount and is slotted differently then the new mini-beast. The video does not do justice to the loudness of this horn. It is louder than what you hear in the video!
You may also click here to hear the horn without video. You may want to check the volume on your computer, especially if you are at work.
I give this horn thumbs up at least for now. Obviously time will tell if it will hold up for the long run. I do many long distance runs in the worst conditions. Only after a few of my 800 mile jaunts will I know for sure whether the Mini-Beast will hold up to extreme highway conditions.
If you are contemplating buying an air horn for your motorcycle, I would highly recommend the Pro Pad Mini-Beast as a great solution, for a low price.
*** June 8, 2009 Update: I received the following email and picture from a Biker Law Blog member. I wish to thank him for updating us on the new and improved Mini Beast Air Horn, and sending his picture of the new Mini Beast Air Horn he installed on his motorcycle.
My Mini Beast Air Horn works just fine since I installed it, but if I ever have to replace it, I will buy a Mini Beast. I like the new style! Thanks Chief. Chief’s email is posted below.
Just wanted to let you know that your info on the Mini Beast Air Horn led to me finally
purchase the new “Mini Beast 2″ for myself. They have made a bunch of improvements to the horn, the brace, and the cover. I purchased the chrome cover, and it looks great on my 2008 Harley Davidson Electra Glide Ultra Classic. Was the perfect fit, and sounds great.
Anyone thinking about a horn would be smart to read your blog and think seriously about this Air Horn. Thanks for your info and to the other riders that posted to your blog about issues they had. I can say that the new Mini Beast 2 will be worth the price and the time to put it on the motorcycle. Mine sounds great…
Gerald “Chief” Major
Corpus Christi, Texas