Hot answers tagged

78

After 50+ years as a cyclist, this is my approach - ride according to the conditions ride in reasonable proximity to the curb if safe, move over a little as traffic approaches know where I'm going, and do it assertively if somebody honks / shouts / waves, assume that they must be a friend, or are telling me something important, so smile broadly and wave ...


63

No. You should always ride with a white light facing forward and a red light facing backwards. If you want additional illumination, you can add multiple white/red lights in the appropriate direction. Amber/yellow lights can be used facing any direction for additional visibility. The first reason is that it's the law: (a) Every bicycle when in use during ...


56

In general, if a bike path (lane) is on a road, follow the direction of traffic on that road. If there isn't a bike path on the other side, then bike carefully in the road if permitted, or find a different route. If a bike path is separated from the road and there aren't directional signs, stay to the appropriate side of the bike path depending on where in ...


55

A quick search, however, shows other colors available to purchase. Concerning "to be seen" bicycle lights, should they be avoided? Yes, they should be avoided. First, off-colors might not be legal in your area. Second, and more importantly, no one will know what it is. If a driver sees a flashing red taillight, or what looks like a normal white headlight,...


51

Rims are worn out when the groove disappears. If the groove is clearly visible, well-defined and of uniform depth all the way around, the rim is not quite worn out and certainly not dangerous. New brake blocks will cause less wear as they will be free of hard particles of grit and metal that get embedded in the relatively soft rubber over time. Given the ...


50

As cyclists, we are vulnerable to any collision. A collision with a truck, bus, car, bicycle, pram, skateboard, rollerblader, pedestrian, dog, or even a domestic cat, will almost always cause a problem, if not an injury. Vehicle drivers are just people like us, except that they are in a comfortable safe box, maybe with crying kids in the back, and a have ...


50

It's difficult to say without seeing photos of the road layout. However, if the road itself continues round to the left, you should indicate right when you're leaving it. In general, you should think about the topology of the road, rather than its geometry. It doesn't matter that you're following a geometrically straight line; you're still leaving the ...


42

Bicycle mirrors are going fall into two basic categories- the type that you mount somewhere on your bike and the type that you mount somewhere on your head. Both categories have their pros and cons, but many of them are subjective. A pro to one individual may be considered a con to the next. Within those two categories you have a variety of different options ...


42

Most places will legally require you to run with white lights on the front and red lights behind. This is crucially important because it immediately tells everybody else on the road whether you're coming towards them or moving away. I once nearly hit somebody because they had a red light on the front of their bike. I saw that at the usual distance and ...


42

This is an interesting and thoughtful question, and just the fact that you are thinking carefully about how other road users think about you is very valuable and will contribute to your safety on the road. Your question makes a lot of sense. How do you indicate to drivers that you need and deserve their consideration and patience, especially when you have ...


41

There is no one size fits all answer to this, except the first point below. When dealing with police, or other authority figures, always behave respectfully. Contact the people responsible for sweeping the road and ask when or if they are going to do it next. Maybe they only sweep when requested. Find out if there's a local bike advocacy group. They ...


39

The fork is fitted the wrong way around. The brake caliper should be in front of the fork, not behind it. The way it is, the bike will be very, very hard to ride because of the negative rake, making it very nervous. The negative rake is also the reason for the pedal overlap. Normally, you should at most get some toe overlap. Loosen the bolt in the top of ...


37

Stop. Back up if necessary. Don't risk running over it. Snakes almost never chase people, they will only attack if they're cornered or you're lying very still (for very large snakes that eat things the size of people). Running over a snake is probably your worst approach if you don't want to get bitten. Not only do you have to be very close to the snake, ...


37

It may well become uncomfortable after pedalling for some time, so don't rely on a quick test ride to check. More importantly though, you need to be able to stop the bike based on the need to stop, and put your foot down without examining the ground for broken glass, thorns etc. It's not completely unknown to strike the sole of your shoe on the ground, like ...


37

It is really dangerous to follow a large vehicle closely. It is possible behind a directeur sportif in a passenger car which is smaller: you can see through it, and the driver is a cyclist who knows you and knows about you. You cannot see what is coming in front of the truck. If they choose to brake hard, watching the brake lights will be of no use; you have ...


36

Wood et al. (2009): Drivers’ and cyclists’ experiences of sharing the road: incidents, attitudes and perceptions of visibility. Accident Analysis and Prevention, 41 (4), pp. 772-776 About differences in the visibility as perceived by bikers and drivers: The largest difference relates to the visibility of cyclists using lights on their bicycles, where ...


34

A resonant frequency encountered on a road surface would be for the whole bike system, i.e. frame, wheels, rider etc. The rider is effectively attached to the frame via elements with spring, damping and active control properties (arms and legs). Bumps encountered at a specific frequency might buck the rider off. Bicycle frames are pretty stiff so any ...


32

The simplest answers are ask for their ID, or for their car keys if they arrive by car. There are plenty of other options on various forums like https://www.bikeforums.net/general-cycling-discussion/446194-selling-bike-craigslist-test-rides.html https://www.bikeforums.net/general-cycling-discussion/687171-how-do-you-let-potential-buyer-test-ride-your-bike....


31

Please accept my apologies on behalf of cyclists. Hollerin' something at a motorist who was trying to figure out how to handle an obviously unclear situation was inappropriate. Thanks for doing your best and not killing any cyclists that day! In general, I agree with the other answers here that you handled this fine and there isn't some magic you could have ...


31

There's a fake Buddha quote on some internet sites which says, "Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die." The most popular of the genuine Buddha quotes (the Dhammapada) begins with, "He abused me, he struck me, he overpowered me, he robbed me." Those who harbor such thoughts do not still their hatred. "He abused me, ...


31

You have commented I mainly use the back brake. I therefore propose option 4: improve your braking technique before spending any money. If you only use half of your bicycle's brakes, you can't expect to stop quickly. Further, you're using much less than half your available braking force, because the back brake is much less effective than the front one. ...


31

I also live in Ottawa so I can provide some pertinent viewpoints. Yes, you should report it, and yes, it will probably be an exercise in frustration. Don't expect the police to do anything about it. However, you should report it anyway, it might end up in a database somewhere and give them another data point about why it's important to build more cycle ...


30

To be honest, I think you handled the situation pretty well as it was. You've got to get yourself to the bottom of the mountain safely and even in locales which have laws about deliberately impeding following road users you will have to allow people to pass in a manner safe for you, this isn't necessarily going to be immediately. Seems to me that this ...


29

According to Safety effects of permanent running lights for bicycles: A controlled experiment. (Madsen JC1, Andersen T, Lahrmann HS.) they give about a 19% reduction in crash rates. There's a copy of the paper in Scribd as pdf. Every reference I've been able to find appears to refer to this one study. The incidence rate, including all recorded bicycle ...


29

Don't create the situation in the first place. Every large event I've ever been on would either have the roads closed down, or send the riders out in waves so as not to create a situation where a car would have to pass so many cyclists at once. Obviously the guy in the car was in the wrong, but there are still things that can be done to prevent the ...


28

When it comes to stop signs, I live by some simple rules: If it's a multi-way stop and there's another car waiting or just arriving, I stop. If I can't clearly see or judge what I'm riding into, I stop. If it doesn't feel right for some reason, I stop. If there's a cop there (or a history of cops), I stop. I don't necessarily clip out and put my foot ...


27

This is not an either-or proposition. Your bike is hitting the bumps and supporting your full weight (minus the very small proportion of weight that might be falling at that exact moment) regardless of how you stand when you hit the bumps. The difference is whether you're going to let the additional damping effects of the down tube, seat tube, bottom ...


27

I use the method in your 3rd picture - I take the middle of the lane when there are no bike lanes. I am helped in these cases by the fact that these roads in my city usually specify the right-most lane as a shared car and bike lane. Besides the speed issue you state when riding on the sidewalk, it is also hazardous for both the cyclist and pedestrians. I ...


26

The key thing, is that you never want to be to the right of cars that are turning right. Depending on the exact lane setup and traffic amounts, I would do one of these: Merge left into the go-straight (left) lane, so that anybody turning right is in a separate lane to the right of me. Be in the center or left third of the right-turn lane, so that anybody ...


26

You're talking about a "bunny hop" and it can be done at speed on a loaded bike but it's high risk. You'd almost certainly be better off jumping off the bike and rolling. US Bike Trials call it a "side hop", but in anglonesia I've mostly heard it called a bunny hop. Here's a photo of the 2006 Cycle Messenger World Champion doing more or less that at about ...


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