August 23, 2014 Login  


Close call yesterday...
Last Post 05/06/2014 04:00 PM by 79 pmooney. 26 Replies.
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Orange Crush

Posts:1161

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04/29/2014 10:05 PM
Ben - the old Dutch style backpedal brakes; decades of skidding fun in my younger years. Not good on any type of hill though. LSD - nah its not that bad; you just gotta keep your eyes peeled - always.
79pmooney

Posts:1082

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04/29/2014 11:51 PM
O.C., all my fixies have really good brakes, front and rear. All are true road bikes, just with a fixed drivetrain.

I would love to challenge the hottest brakeless fixie rider in Portland (and some of them are very talented) to a simple contest: We ride side-by-side in a big circle in a large empty parking lot. Say at 20 mph. At the center of this circle is a person to judge the contest. He has a whistle. When he sees we are even and evenly matched for speed, he blows the whistle. We both stop, hard. The forward most bike loses. Best of three.

I would let that fixie rider choose the bike for me to ride of my 6 bikes. Course, that could well work to my advantage. My best stoppers are my funky old bikes with equally funky brakes!

I fully agree, those old coaster brakes were a lot of fun, but actually stopping was a gradual process. We used to have contests to see who could skid the farthest. And to get current: when a new, really good gripping tire came out a few years ago, I bought a pair for my winter fixie. Came back to the shop a couple of months later and talked of liking the grippy tread. Shop owner said he sold a few to the fixie crowd but that they took them off after the first hard stop because they were injuring themselves trying to skid a wheel with that sticky a tread. What a concept! Ride slippery tires to avoid injury in panic stops!

Edit: The quick stops I can do riding fixed are not because I resist the pedals hard.  It is because the reaction to not power the pedals (and thereby apply a small drag) is very close to instantaneous.  So my slowing starts much sooner.  And the best time in the stopping process to improve stopping distance is that first instance when you are going the fastest.

Ben
Nick A

Posts:107

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04/30/2014 09:27 AM
I had been riding in group rides before I ever got a drivers license. As a result, when I learned to drive, I often saw dicey moves by brain dead motorists developing long before your typical driver. Agreed, body language is key.

Nick
zootracer

Posts:275

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04/30/2014 06:06 PM
Glad you are o.k. Hard to make "eye contact" these days as most windows are tinted and often cyclist are wearing dark sunglasses. 30-35 MPH is fast. Drivers are not looking for cyclists, they are looking for other vehicles. I read an article somewhere, years ago, about how many more seconds it takes for a motorist to recognize a cyclist, a few more seconds than it takes for a motor vehicle. In our case it could be a matter of life or death. A number of years back I was making a left turn at an intersection, I looked left and right, all clear, started to turn, then low and behold I saw a motorcyclist approaching from my left. I stopped in plenty of time, but to this day have no idea why I did not see him. Also, gripes, I have on very few occasions make a left turn in front of a vehicle, not seeing them. Luckily they saw me, or I would not be typing this. I always anticipate the motorist to do the wrong thing. Most often, they make mistakes. It's the one's that see us and don't give a cra* that really bother me.
THE SKINNY

Posts:380

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04/30/2014 06:18 PM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UfA3ivLK_tE
always look twice.
How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.
zootracer

Posts:275

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04/30/2014 08:09 PM
I counted 13, did not see the bear.
Red Tornado

Posts:34

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05/06/2014 10:41 AM
Follow up events since I started this thread....
Had two similar close calls in as many rides since then.
Cruising home f/work Friday afternoon through a residential neighborhood. An elderly couple pulled out in front of me but luckily I saw this one coming, as the gentleman only looked to his right (I was approaching from his left) and then pulled out - while talking to his wife. Accident averted with a little bit of a cushion, to boot.
Yesterday, again riding home f/work. This time a company van pulls out from my left as I was slowing to turn left. I was able slow enough to give him room to pass through, but he saw me at the last second and stopped in the lane where oncoming traffic would be passing in the next 5-10 seconds. I could tell by his facial expression as I rode past he had no idea I was there until it was almost too late.
Three incidents in three consecutive rides. Wow. Hopefully that's all for the rest of the year. :-)
THE SKINNY

Posts:380

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05/06/2014 11:01 AM
not to be accusatory but it sounds like you're not visible enough?
How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.
zootracer

Posts:275

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05/06/2014 12:24 PM
bad karma?
Red Tornado

Posts:34

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05/06/2014 12:47 PM
I typically wear brightly-colored cycling clothing and am a normal size guy (5'-10") so I don't believe I'm any less visible than the average cyclist, but I suppose you can never be "too visible".
Bad karma? Could be. I'm a decent guy, but I've got my skeletons - as do many others.

Typically I go through stuff in spurts. I've had close calls in past years that were spaced very closely (within a week, or so) and then nothing for approx. 11-12 months. I also get flats in the same manner. I'll go literally for 1-2 years with no flats (road bike) and then have anywhere from 2 to 5 within a 2 weeks (that's almost every, or every other ride), then nothing again for a year or more. Even experienced the same phenomenon with flats when riding dirt - before going tubeless.

Maybe that's just how it works with me. Gotta roll with it.
THE SKINNY

Posts:380

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05/06/2014 02:48 PM
there's probably some scientific name for things like that. on the ride to work i can go all week without incident and then twice in one day i see people run stop signs. stay safe.
How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.
79pmooney

Posts:1082

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05/06/2014 04:00 PM
Last night I was returning home around 10pm. Riding up Terwilliger, the parkway that goes past 2 hospitals. Approaching the first, I see a van coming down the hill to the stop sign on my right. Van slows but makes no indication that it is going to stop or that he/she sees me. (I have my headlight set on flashing. It is not the brightest light out there, but at the two brightest settings and flashing, it it certified "rude". I also have a Planet Bike flasher on the front corner of my right hip specifically for cars pulling out or side streets and am riding a bike decorated with 10' of reflecting tape. Plus a reflecting vest and yellow jersey.)

I am about to get T-boned or it is going to be VERY close. I yell "woa" in a very loud voice. The van stops instantly. I think I awakened he/she from a trance.

Ben
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