I recently ordered a Brodie knob and kerb feelers for my minivan. I would like to know if these are legal for on-road use - they seem very practical, but I never see them on the road. BTW, I live in Virginia.
I do remember curb feelers, but I am not familiar with “Brodie knobs”. Can you explain that reference?
Yes, curb feelers are legal, but until you tell us what Brodie knobs are, I can’t give you any opinion on that. However, whatever opinions are given on this board, you have to remember that they are merely opinions. For a specific answer regarding legality, you have to contact the appropriate authorities in your state.
If you mean Brodie knob as in suicide knob, (mounts to the steering wheel), they’re illegal in all states. They were called suicide knobs because they could come off in your hand as you were turning the vehicle. And that’s why they’re illegal.
There certainly are a lot of web sites selling these knobs; are you usure that they aren’t legal? In any case, Z69105 should contact the Virginia State Police to determine if they are acceptable in Virginia, and on what vehicles. Here’s the URL:
There is probably a telephone number if you can’t find the information on line.
I grew up calling these things “necker knobs” since they allowed steerign with your left hand and wrapping your right arm around your female companion. In those days all US cars had fron bench seats.
We also had them on the tractor steering wheels since you needed that other hand to often adjust the plow or other equipment you were pulling.
If a brodie knob is a knob mounted on the steering wheel, I have seen them used in commercial trucks, which is the worst place to use them. Suppose you are driving along and one of your steering tires suddenly decompresses. There is a good chance the steering wheel will pull hard to one side and break your wrist or your hand. Most trucking companies have policies against them. I suppose they are somewhat safer in a car, but I would not install one in my car unless I had a disability that made it necessary.
Thank you for your answers. I’ve emailed the Virginia State Police and will post my answer here when I get it.
OK, I got the response via email.
No restrictions in VA - and yes, a Brodie knob is a suicide knob.
Another problem with these knobs is what can happen in a collision. Not exactly a smooth, soft surface for your face or upper body to hit. Less of a problem if you have an airbag and it deploys.