I'm a Nasa engineer – here's how to make your car horn sound friendly instead of an angry honk that'll enrage others | The Sun

A NASA engineer has revealed how you can make your car horn sound friendly instead of an angry honk that just annoys other drivers.

YouTube star Mark Rober took to his channel, which has 28million subscribers, to show just how he did it.

In the description of the video he wrote: “I customised my car horn to play three different sounds.

“The main sound is the ‘Courtesy Honk’ which is used to get the attention of other drivers in a non-emergency scenario.

“It's two quick chirps of the horn that is not only friendly sounding, but it's not as loud as a normal car horn.”

At the beginning of the footage, he is shown stopped at a set of traffic lights behind a grey Porsche 911.

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But when the lights change to green, the sports car in front doesn’t move off, so Mark sounds the ‘courtesy honk’ to alert the driver and they move off.

Mark says: “That’s what I call the courtesy honk, I just pushed this button,” as the camera moves down to show a row of buttons just above the automatic gear lever.

He adds: “It's two super quick chirps of the horn that are not only friendly sounding, but it's intentionally not as loud as a normal horn.”

Mark then sets about showing how he did it.

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He says: “When you think about it, cars only have two built in ways to communicate with each other.

“You got your turn signal and your horn, but the problem with the horn is that it's so one dimensional.

“It's like if your only tool is a hammer it's really good at one thing, but it sucks at everything else.

“But now that pretty much everybody owns a smartphone, 99 per cent of the time I use my horn I'm not trying to avoid a crash, I'm trying to let the person in front of me know it's time to stop reading that text they just received.

“And that's the issue, I'm not upset. I just want to be like, hey dude, the light's green.

“No big deal.

“But I'm not some hardcore, angry, road rage, tough guy.

“But even this Jetta, which has just about the most emasculating horn possible sounds angry when you honk it at a light.

“And if you try and do a nice quick honk it doesn't usually register because it bottoms out too quick.”

Now though, he just pushes his custom-made button instead.

Which he says also has the advantage of working as a way of communicating that can be used in a number of situations, not just at stop signs.

Mark says: “Like if someone is just sort of drifting in your lane you're not sure if they see you or not but you don't want to use your big horn.

“Or, if you just want to get someone's attention to tell them something… If someone needs to move forward in traffic or in a drive-thru.

“It's nice because you don't wanna seem like a jerk as they can look right at you in their rear-view mirror.

“You can even use it as a way to say thank you.

He added that he thought the feature should be added to all cars.

Mark says: “So you still have your big horn that you can't miss in the case of an emergency.

“But there should be a smaller button right over here for the courtesy honk.”

Fortunately for Mark, being an engineer, he had the skills and knowledge to be able to change it around.

Mark revealed that he got a soundboard from Amazon for just over £21 ($27) which allowed him to upload sound effects via a USB.

Then he also purchased three horn buttons to trigger the effects, which cost him £5.50 ($7) each.

He then attached a wire to his car’s cigarette lighter and then used a 12 to five volt power inverter to get the right voltage for the soundboard which is connected to the buttons to trigger the horn sound effects.

Mark then attached a £10 ($13) amp to the soundboard to make it loud enough.

That in turn is linked to a £10 ($13) PA speaker.

Once it was set up, he called his pal Howard to help him install it.

The cables were attached through the dash to the PA speaker which was mounted under the bonnet.

The guys also installed another horn system which is used on trains and trucks and works via a compressor that fills an air tank.

Mark also got the buttons to light up so that they “look really cool at night”.

He also added a third sound which Mark said was designed to be “one notch nicer” than the courtesy honk “if you want to be super chill”.

The button that activates the horn system which is used on trains and trucks, Mark warns, is only to be used in “extreme situations” – like when two teenagers are taking their “sweet time” to cross the road while “fidget spinning”.

Previously, Mark showed his followers the quickest way to de-fog your windscreen in a YouTube science test.

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