Author Topic: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike  (Read 2635 times)

Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #25 on: September 12, 2018, 11:21:01 am »
I don't think visibility is the issue. They can see you, they just don't care.

A touring trick i've seen relatively frequently is to strap a long bit of garden cane from the pannier rack so that it sticks out a metre on the traffic side. Usually a high vis ribbon or something to mark the end. Negligible weight or aero penalty, it'll break if hit and forces space as the passing motorist doesn't want a scratch on their passenger door. You just have to remember it's there and not try to filter or squeeze through gaps.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #26 on: September 12, 2018, 11:44:13 am »
I've had similar results from a poster tube attached horizontally.  Of course, you've got to beware of bollards.

On the other hand, there's a guy who sometimes comes on the local group's rides who has (along with various FRIKKIN LAZERS) some sort of shiny pom-pom on a telescopic fishing rod arrangement attached to his handlebars.  Funnily enough, he seems to have far more trouble with motorists than anyone else, but that appears to be down to riding style (particularly road positioning and predictable behaviour - or lack thereof - at junctions) rather than any exotic bike accessories.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Riggers

  • Mine's a pipe, er… pint!
Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #27 on: September 12, 2018, 12:24:27 pm »
Thank you all for your inputs and, if nothing else, it's a way of venting one's spleen.

There are several sad factors involved with todays driver that add up to potential accidents, and has been noted already by others – laziness and just not paying enough attention to operate the vehicle at ALL times; cars are treated by their owners as another physical extension of themselves and woe betide if you touch their car and, as an extension to this observation, I cannot understand why they will give more room to overtaking another car and not us. Maybe it's deemed cars will cause more damage on impact and we won't.

I know the other exit routes in Lewes Dan (and used those too) and I've been cycling for quite a number of years, and this is the very first time there's been any sort of incident in Lewes. We're always on more alert at 'commuter times' during the day, but this was midday-isa, and she was just a dozy cow: lazy, away with the fairies somewhere, staring at god-know's-what. Her speed was very low, which suspects me to speculate that perhaps she did see me, but just didn't have a fucking clue to hold back at that pinch-point traffic spot. She turned down St Andrew's Lane, but I couldn't be bothered to go and remonstrate with her, and frighten the kids in the car.

One time, after buying an axe at the Sunday market held at Brighton Marina, I continued my ride and, on a stretch that joins Newhaven to Lewes, where often (nowadays) you can get lazy overtaking, this time people gave me plenty of room. Maybe it was the wooden handle sticking out the top pf the backpack? Who knows?
Certainly never seen cycling south of Sussex

Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #28 on: September 12, 2018, 12:41:20 pm »
I don't think visibility is the issue. They can see you, they just don't care.

A touring trick i've seen relatively frequently is to strap a long bit of garden cane from the pannier rack so that it sticks out a metre on the traffic side. Usually a high vis ribbon or something to mark the end. Negligible weight or aero penalty, it'll break if hit and forces space as the passing motorist doesn't want a scratch on their passenger door. You just have to remember it's there and not try to filter or squeeze through gaps.

I recently did something similar with a length of very lightweight metal tube, zip-tied across the pannier rack in such a way as it could be slid from side to side, so it could be central, extending no wider than the panniers, or out to the right in "give me some space you f**ing moron" mode.  What didnt work was hanging a 1/2 watt blinky off it, because it just spun around to face the ground.   Now just rigged the blinky as far outboard on the pannier as it is possible to go.

Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #29 on: September 12, 2018, 12:50:33 pm »
I've also tried something like this.  A year or two ago on commute, I used a length of light weight metallic broom handle with reflective tape and a flashing light on the end.  It was attached to the classic rack of my barley, protruded about 40cm, and could bend away if caught on something.  Not sure if it helped.  I have also thought of using a pool woggle/noodle lying around in the shed, cut in half length & width ways, for more reflective tape etc.  It's flexible, but seems rigid enough to hold straight.   Might have a go and see what it's like.  :)

"an inordinate fondness for beetles"

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #30 on: September 12, 2018, 12:55:48 pm »
I can't help thinking that adding lights/reflectives to the sticky-out object is a bit of an own goal.  Turns it from "dodgy-looking load" to "bicycle safety device", which can therefore be ignored.  If you do want to draw attention to it, I'd go with the bit-of-hivis-bib-tied-on-at-the-end approach, in the style of van drivers with long ladders / bits of wood.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #31 on: September 12, 2018, 01:08:39 pm »
Good point.  Something dangly and reflective on the end, perhaps 'disembodied & floating' near the bike at night...
"an inordinate fondness for beetles"

Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #32 on: September 12, 2018, 01:10:27 pm »
; cars are treated by their owners as another physical extension of themselves and woe betide if you touch their car and, as an extension to this observation, I cannot understand why they will give more room to overtaking another car and not us. Maybe it's deemed cars will cause more damage on impact and we won't.

I think the perspective from a car driver is that moving out into the path of an oncoming car will lead to instant death and a numpty on a bike is a lot more squishy if they have to take avoiding action of said oncoming car - how this translates into a refusal to wait until the large oncoming car has cleared before passing I don't really know.

Similar to my dangerous commuting road post last week I think the only answer is to hold your line, no matter what, maintain a steady even pace and let them deal with you and not the other way round.

I didn't count how many cars passed me this morning on my 15 mile commute but it would have been a lot and only one did something worthy of a score on the numpty-ometer. As a percentage over a year it would be very small but of course that isn't much comfort if it's the one that causes a major problem.
Duct tape is magic and should be worshipped

Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #33 on: September 12, 2018, 01:12:04 pm »
Wear a blonde wig.
It helps if you have a truly great arse too.  Like mine  :smug:
Never tell me the odds.

Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #34 on: September 12, 2018, 01:15:03 pm »
...
One time, after buying an axe at the Sunday market held at Brighton Marina, I continued my ride and, on a stretch that joins Newhaven to Lewes, where often (nowadays) you can get lazy overtaking, this time people gave me plenty of room. Maybe it was the wooden handle sticking out the top pf the backpack? Who knows?
In which case, what about one of these?
L'enfer, c'est les autos.

Zipperhead

  • The cyclist formerly known as Big Helga
Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #35 on: September 12, 2018, 01:29:43 pm »
Wear a blonde wig.
It helps if you have a truly great arse too.  Like mine  :smug:

A huge arse wearing a blond wig? You'll be mistaken for Boris.
Our son does know who Boz Scaggs is, we've done ok as parents.

Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #36 on: September 12, 2018, 02:02:45 pm »
^ POTD.

Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #37 on: September 12, 2018, 05:47:03 pm »
I tried the swimming foam aid, fits really easily to the barley rack and would probably work pretty well as a 1m 'load to keep clear of', but well, how can I put this, just no...  ;D
"an inordinate fondness for beetles"

Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #38 on: September 12, 2018, 07:48:33 pm »
When I had the burley bee kid trailer information loads of room. Only once did someone see it and edge as close as they could and I mean sitting up in seat so could see closer.

When I asked what he was doing he replied it's ok I've seen it. 

Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #39 on: September 12, 2018, 08:37:54 pm »

I know the other exit routes in Lewes Dan (and used those too) and I've been cycling for quite a number of years, and this is the very first time there's been any sort of incident in Lewes. We're always on more alert at 'commuter times' during the day, but this was midday-isa, and she was just a dozy cow: lazy, away with the fairies somewhere, staring at god-know's-what. Her speed was very low, which suspects me to speculate that perhaps she did see me, but just didn't have a fucking clue to hold back at that pinch-point traffic spot. She turned down St Andrew's Lane, but I couldn't be bothered to go and remonstrate with her, and frighten the kids in the car.


Sorry if my reply came off as “I wouldn’t ride up there”. I know you know the area, I was more intending to add to your picture of the place. It’s a shit thing to happen.

Drivers in general should be more aware of the space they’re moving into than they are.


Riggers

  • Mine's a pipe, er… pint!
Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #40 on: September 13, 2018, 10:28:36 am »
No worries Dan.  My 'sensitivity levels' are a little heightened right now, given that these incidences seem to be on the increase (punishment passes, mis-judged passes, peer-pressure passes because of traffic building behind the driver – "I must get pass").

I consider myself a skilled rider and of a certain age that I won't take shit from drivers intimidating me, but . . . all of which we discuss, complaining about piss-poor driving, intimidation, road-rage – any which could lead to a cyclist being injured or worse (and I don't really wish this thread to veer off on another direction) but . . . if, we had much more protection from the law, our streets (and here we should include pedestrians too) would be much more pleasant and safer. There was a piece on R4 this morning, announcing that the penalty for being found guilty of assaulting a member of the emergency services, is being raised from 6 months in prison to 1 year (comes in force in November). That's fine and don't have any issues with any of that, but isn't it time the judicial system, along with Government, looked at bolstering our rights to ride safely on roads.

I'm going off on one again!!! ::-)
Certainly never seen cycling south of Sussex

Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #41 on: September 15, 2018, 11:13:03 am »
I found it a pleasant experiance pottering about the lanes of the Leicestershire, Staffordshire, Derbyshire boarders last week where almost every pass was really courteous.




It may have had something to do with my walking stick strapped across the top of my saddle bag and even when collapsed to its shortest length sticking out ~30cm beyond my right hip  :demon:

It has a nice large rubber foot on the end so unlikely to scratch anything and worse still as an aluminium tube is unlikely to break on impact but it's presence seems to engender a positive reaction.

Plus it made my excuses to the many cyclist who went past me without having to explain I hadn't been on the bike for almost 6 months.

Gattopardo

  • Lord of the sith
  • Overseaing the building of the death star
Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #42 on: September 15, 2018, 02:13:27 pm »
From London experience, people get in to a car and are oblivious as the metal box they are in take them away from being connected to surrounding people.

Didn't someone say a spade or a pickaxe across the rack helped people give them the wider berth.

hellymedic

  • Just do it!
Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #43 on: September 15, 2018, 03:12:24 pm »
Theory of BIG, innit?

Manotea

  • Where there is doubt...
Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #44 on: September 15, 2018, 06:41:42 pm »
my usual technique on the narrow lanes or pinch points is to look back over my right shoulder (when i hear the car coming), wobble towards the middle of the road and back and start pedalling out of saddle rocking the bike side to side pretending i'm pushing very hard. this is very effective, as it gives a message to the driver that i can be unpredictable, but am also trying hard not to hold them up - they usually wait when it's safe to pass (with an odd exception). i also wave them to overtake if they are too hesitant and the road is clear ahead.

Reminds me of my last ascent of White Down (a while back, sadly)... a long queue of traffic behind as I cranked up the hill, a long queue of traffic ahead, all pulled over waiting for me to pass. I felt very proud of all concerned.


Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #45 on: September 29, 2018, 07:54:42 pm »
I ride to the gym on my old MTB wearing scruffy shorts, trainers and a baseball cap worn back to front. I don't get close passes. If I'm out on a road bike, wearing cycling gear and [rare these days] a helmet, I'm often passed close enough to lose skin off my elbows.
We have an old guy around here that works as a gardener.  He rides a scruffy Hybrid bike with a huge Flymo balanced on one shoulder and a fork and spade across the handlebars. He rides the A56 which is one of the busiest roads in the UK. Across the M60 motorway roundabout, in three lanes of mad traffic and I don't know how he survives. But he does. Nobody goes near him and he never gets any abuse.
Nothing left to prove. http://adenough1.blogspot.co.uk/

quixoticgeek

  • Mostly Harmless
Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #46 on: September 29, 2018, 11:56:15 pm »

Cycling in Scandinavia recently there seemed to be two reactions to them finding a cyclist in the middle of nowhere.

"holy crap that's a cyclist!?! I better give them all the space possible" They then over took in the other lane giving me loads of space.

Or the other reaction

"There's no way there's a cyclist crazy enough to be here, I must be imagining it, I'll drive as if they aren't there". The closest pass in 1700km of Scandi was from a Norwegian Ambulance. It wasn't on blues, it passed me under 300mm away.

There is no solution that makes drivers give you space, no amount of hi vi works, no extra lighting. Until the police can start issuing driving bans for anyone passing within 1.5m of a cyclist, there's nothing that will work, and even then it's only going to reduce the number of close passes, it won't eliminate them.

Sorry.

J
--
Beer, bikes, and backpacking
http://b.42q.eu/

Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #47 on: September 30, 2018, 09:15:49 am »
Yesterday's Henley Hilly Hundred was unusual for the number of drivers, on single-track roads, who just kept going towards me, without changing speed at all, and left me to take any necessary evasive action. Plenty of others slowed down and picked a spot for us to pass, of course, or let me do so - and various others waited patiently behind for a good passing place.

But three or four drivers just forcing their way through, in one event, has not happened before. I sometimes wonder whether driving standards vary by area.

LittleWheelsandBig

  • Whimsy Rider
Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #48 on: September 30, 2018, 09:46:13 am »
I find that I tend to fumble my bidon when such folk are barrelling towards me, which can mean the bidon bounces off their windscreen. Of course, staying upright and alive often takes priority over drinking some water.
Wheel meet again, don't know where, don't know when...

Cudzoziemiec

  • Solar powered, tea fuelled cycle-wol
Re: Why I'm getting a lollipop for my road bike
« Reply #49 on: September 30, 2018, 04:19:39 pm »
Yesterday's Henley Hilly Hundred was unusual for the number of drivers, on single-track roads, who just kept going towards me, without changing speed at all, and left me to take any necessary evasive action. Plenty of others slowed down and picked a spot for us to pass, of course, or let me do so - and various others waited patiently behind for a good passing place.

But three or four drivers just forcing their way through, in one event, has not happened before. I sometimes wonder whether driving standards vary by area.
I'm sure they do. And by time of day. It's not just that some places and times are better or worse, but that certain things are the norm or not according to some sort of local "traffic culture".
An ungovernable laughter, a joyous agitation which makes the summer stretching before you seem like an unrolling canvas on which you might draw those first rude pure strokes that are free. (Capote)