21
votes
11answers
494 views

Safely overtaking pedestrians

When riding on bike paths or mixed-use paths, there are usually pedestrians walking along them as well. Pedestrians tend to be somewhat unpredictable; they may suddenly turn around or step to the ...
21
votes
5answers
441 views

What are some good tips for riding in a large group?

One of the popular bike routes near me has a few groups that ride together on Saturday and Sunday. The groups get as big as 30 to 40 riders and they move fast (25 to 35 mph). I have occasionally ...
21
votes
4answers
4k views

Are bananas still a good food to carry when cycling?

I am very much an old school cyclist and I always carry a banana with me when I go on rides longer than an hour. In the past I have found them ideal - they easily fit in my jersey pockets, the ...
21
votes
4answers
346 views

Do I have to simply wait for google maps to add cycling directions to my area? Or can I help?

Related to this question about submitting road data to google maps. I'm curious to know if there is any way to get Google started on cycling data in my city. There are a lot of cyclists in my city, ...
21
votes
4answers
14k views

How can you recognise a quality steel frame?

I'm looking to buy/build a road bike and I would like it to: last 100 years have a low environmental cost As I'm not interested in shedding grams (a diet would be more helpful for me), I'm leaning ...
20
votes
8answers
9k views

Does the plastic cap on a Presta valve serve any purpose once fitted to a rim?

I can see the use of the valve cap on a Presta valve when the tube is still packaged (it obviously stops the valve puncturing the tube), but does it do anything except look pretty (or not) once you've ...
20
votes
13answers
117k views

Can I use a cyclocross bike for regular road-biking purposes?

I want to race cyclocross, and I also want to ride some longer rides out on the road. Can I buy a cyclocross bike and use it for both cyclocross and some serious road rides (I'm talking century type ...
20
votes
10answers
2k views

Theft deterrents (in addition to locking up a bike)

Besides locking a bike up properly, are there other deterrents against theft (such as engraving) that make a bicycle less attractive to a potential bike thief? UPDATE It was stolen. :-(
20
votes
7answers
9k views

New chain is pre-lubricated, should I clean it?

My new chain is totally coated in lube. I would never ride a bike with a chain like this normally. All that goop is just going to collect flotsam from the road and wear out the chain. Should I clean ...
20
votes
9answers
74k views

How to get a very tight tire back on the rim?

I needed to change the tube as a consequence of a flat tire and I am in the situation that it's just impossible to put the tire back on the rim. In almost ten years of experience with road bikes and ...
20
votes
12answers
11k views

What is a good iPhone app for bikers?

There are tons that are out there for recording routes, and such. There's also the physical mounting. Is the iPhone actually good/useful for bikers?
20
votes
7answers
46k views

How can I check tire pressure without a pressure gauge?

I would like to tell if my tires are correctly inflated, in this case road tires, but I do not have a pressure gauge. Is there a handy heuristic for checking the pressure? Could I do it, for example, ...
20
votes
3answers
4k views

It it impolite to “informally” join or draft a group of cyclists?

On a recent Sunday ride on a country road, I was slowly overtaken by a group of (5) guys on carbon-fiber road bikes. They were "proper" road cyclists, if you know what I mean. When they passed me, I ...
20
votes
5answers
2k views

Equipping a commuter bike

My commute is a bit over 5 miles each way through the city. It's not that long a commute; in traffic, it takes about 35 minutes door to door, and I'm never far from public transit that I could use in ...
20
votes
7answers
5k views

How can I teach my capable 20-something friend to ride a bike?

My friend, let's call him Jack, does not know how to ride a bicycle. Jack is a fully capable 27-year-old man. His father was incarcerated during a block of his upbringing, leaving him without a skill ...
20
votes
9answers
38k views

Why don't road bikes use v-brakes?

In my experience, linear pull brakes (v-brakes) have more stopping power than other types of cantilever brakes (let the flames start ;). Modern road bikes always come fitted with dual pivot brakes. ...
20
votes
3answers
2k views

Is fluorescent clothing effective?

I read recently that fluorescent clothing was not effective at all at night. If this is the case, how effective is it during the day, and should I stop buying tops that are fluorescent to use on my ...
20
votes
5answers
3k views

Spokes keep breaking - bad hub or bad build?

Background information A bit of background information (I'll try keep it brief): Last year I bought an old but unused bike, 5 speeds with internal gearing. Apparently the shop bought a lot of bikes ...
20
votes
2answers
2k views

Practical cleaning routine for a commuter bike

I regularly (almost daily) ride my bike, often in bad weather. I mostly ride on roads, but sometimes through parks, forest etc. on unpaved surfaces. My bike is usually rather dirty, at least the lower ...
20
votes
2answers
5k views

How to store bikes inside a house or unit with limited internal space?

Between my girlfriend and myself, we have 5 bikes of which 3 would ideally be stored inside (the two road bikes and my duallie). However, my house is a relatively small terrace house which doesn't ...
19
votes
25answers
19k views

What is a simple mnemonic for remembering the thread direction when removing pedals?

Given that pedal threads are different on the left and right pedals: the right side pedal has a right-hand thread (removes counterclockwise, installs clockwise); the left side pedal has a left-hand ...
19
votes
9answers
17k views

Safety vests: Yellow vs. Orange?

What are the factors that should affect whether my visibility will be higher with a "high visibility Yellow" vs. a "high visibility Orange" vest or jacket? It seems too simplistic to simply say ...
19
votes
5answers
4k views

Is my stopping dangerous when Idaho Stop is de facto but not legal?

I've been bike commuting in the East Bay Area of California (5mi/day, plus public transport) for a few weeks now. I recently attended an in-class safety course, where I learned the fine for not ...
19
votes
6answers
3k views

How can I interpret the intent of and respond to cars behind me honking?

Two days in a row on my commute home I've had vehicles behind me start honking at me. (Note: I'm in Canada, and drive on the right.) The first time I was riding on a four-lane road, with a left ...
19
votes
5answers
3k views

How should a bicycle helmet fit?

I see enough folks wearing helmets in such a manner that they might as well not be. What is the proper way to fit & wear a bicycle helmet?
19
votes
7answers
1k views

What are some alternatives to fruitlessly ringing my bell at a motorist?

I doubt that motor-vehicle drivers can hear the "ding" sound that a bicycle bell makes. What are some better alternatives?
19
votes
7answers
13k views

How many miles of riding require the same effort as one mile of running?

A co-worker and myself are having a friendly bike / run contest. What is a good ratio for miles ridden vs. miles run? I know it depends on pace. But I'm curious what a generally accepted range of ...
19
votes
8answers
8k views

How to carry a concealed firearm on a bike?

For those of you that happen to cycle through rough neighborhoods and are able to do concealed carry of firearms... Wondering what you wear to conceal them that works well while cycling. Obviously ...
19
votes
6answers
535 views

Do cyclists warrant special consideration under traffic laws?

I recently saw a YouTube channel where a motorist with an agenda has taken it upon himself to film cyclists as they break traffic laws. Most (perhaps not all) of the actions I observed would be what I ...
19
votes
8answers
5k views

What should I look for when buying a used bicycle?

I'm moving to a city where I can ride a bicycle to the grocery store, coffee shop etc. I want to purchase a decent used bicycle. I'm leaning towards a bike that's in between a "10-speed" or road-bike ...
19
votes
4answers
736 views

How to descend mountain roads?

What skills and techniques are required to descending at high speeds while maintaining control of the bicycle? How does this change when the roads are wet or have gravel in them?
19
votes
2answers
9k views

Why can't Yellow Jersey change hands on last day of Tour De France?

I've often read / seen on TV that the race is won by the end of the penultimate day. For example, this article in the Guardian describes this year's (2011) eventual winner as the champion elect in an ...
19
votes
6answers
3k views

Touring load weight distribution

What's the best way to load a touring bike, to increase stability and balance? Assuming a standard two-rack-and-panniers setup, where should I put most of my weight? I have a camping load, about 50 ...
19
votes
2answers
484 views

Why do left pedals have inverted thread?

We all know right pedals are screwed regularly in the cranks. Whereas left ones are screwed in the other direction. Why is it like this and not the other way around? Here is how I see things: under ...
19
votes
7answers
533 views

Discouraging motorists from stopping at an intersection when they have the right-of-way

Where I live, bicycles are widely accepted in traffic; motorists are on balance considerate and careful around us. But on an almost daily basis, I run into motorists who are too "polite" at ...
19
votes
5answers
12k views

How do I reduce slack in the chain of a single-speed bicycle?

I have a single speed bicycle that has some slack in the chain and threatens to come off. How can I reduce this slack?
19
votes
3answers
10k views

What exercise should I do in the gym to assist with hill-climbing?

I have a few events coming up this year which have a fair amount of climbing (one is over a hundred miles with about 6500ft of ascent - that's an average of just over 1% for the entire distance). ...
19
votes
1answer
5k views

How Strong is my road bike?

Background: I have spent most of my time riding mountain bikes but I have recently started riding road sometimes too. I really like the position the road bike puts you in and the fact that you have ...
19
votes
2answers
935 views

Selecting the right crank length

What is the best way to determine the correct crank length for my height and more specifically my leg length?
18
votes
12answers
22k views

How can you speed a road-bike up?

So, I have an 80's raleigh bike, reassembled from spare parts. I'm wondering what the best way to get more speed out of the bike is. Wheels? Gears? Lighter gear? Different pedals? I'm rather fond ...
18
votes
8answers
29k views

Front suspension or full suspension mountain bike

I'm considering buying a mountain bike and have narrowed it down to two models (make and model aren't important for this question). One model is a full suspension bike (front and back), the other is ...
18
votes
9answers
5k views

Why Do I Need a Better/Lighter Road Bicycle to Train For 'Fitness'?

I'm about to purchase a bicycle in the very near future and have been shopping around at different bike shops to see what I like and what they offer. My primary goal here is to commute to work. It's ...
18
votes
9answers
11k views

How to store bicycles outside during winter

Okay. I have a bike which I would like to store for around six moths. Winter temperatures can be as low as -30 C. The problem is that I do not have an indoor storage space, so it is going to reside on ...
18
votes
7answers
1k views

Lock my bicycle on busy or quiet places?

When I lock my bicycle I try to lock it on quiet spots, usually on street racks situated on secondary streets. I think it will be less visible so it will attract less looks. On the other hand, if a ...
18
votes
9answers
28k views

What to use to clean your chain (and cogs)?

I've just tried cleaning my chain and cogs with some really hot water and washing-up liquid. I also used a toothbrush, j-cloth and a non-scratch scourer. After over an hour of some serious elbow ...
18
votes
9answers
7k views

What are the differences (and their practical implications) between a 29" mountain bike and a cyclocross bicycle?

I am considering the purchase of a bicycle for riding off road, and have heard a lot of buzz about 29" mountain bikes. However, I am not particularly interested in technical riding - although I would ...
18
votes
5answers
11k views

Padded saddle VS padded shorts

Why do cyclists use padded shorts instead of padded saddle? It seems like putting padding on the saddle would be more optimal. Doubly so for triathlon.
18
votes
8answers
1k views

Why are battery-powered lights so popular?

Both on this site and "in real life", battery-powered lights appear to be at least as popular as generator-powered lights. I have always been slightly confused by this. To me, a generator-powered ...
18
votes
9answers
1k views

Where to find good bicycle maintenance info?

If there is a good book what would it be? I'm pretty sure I can find stuff on YouTube (any particular user?). Any blogs out there?
18
votes
7answers
2k views

Bicycling and a Right Turn Only Lane?

When commuting with a bike I usually stick to the right lane (I am based in the USA). When approaching a right turn only lane while biking, should I stay in the turn lane and signal to the car behind ...

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