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Source: (consider it) Thread: "My chain fell off.....": A cycling thread
Gee D
Shipmate
# 13815

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quote:
Originally posted by no_prophet:
The idea or requirement to ring or honk to peds is of no value when they are iPlodding along, grooving to their thrash metal screemo, oblivious to all environmental sounds.

Pedestrian training should include the simple rule "do not try to dodge out of the way of a cyclist, unless you want to be hit, let the cyclist navigate around you".

As for the legality of cycling on sidewalks/pavements. What may be illegal can save your life. But police can be hopeless in some places. Tell the local council or whomever is the local Grand Poobah to make things safe!

Not everyone has an iPod in use while walking to work.

The rule of navigation is that power gives way to sail gives way to rowing. Cyclists would do well to remember this, particularly in cities.

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Not every Anglican in Sydney is Sydney Anglican

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Patdys
Iron Wannabe
RooK-Annoyer
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I am very happy to give way to sailboats and rowers. It is just the pedestrians I struggle with. Actually, it is the cyclists responsibility to pass safely and allow for odd last minute movements.

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Marathon run. Next Dream. Australian this time.

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Welease Woderwick

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Cows have automatic right of way here but they are generally slow moving and have some traffic sense. Young goats move more quickly and have less sense. The biggest problem for me is autorickshaws and I'm sure the drivers round here have learnt any amount of basic Anglo-Saxon from me in the last few years. When I am very cross I also hit offending vehicles with the flat of my hand - in a very Quakerly manner.

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Sioni Sais
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# 5713

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quote:
Originally posted by Welease Woderwick:
Cows have automatic right of way here but they are generally slow moving and have some traffic sense. Young goats move more quickly and have less sense. The biggest problem for me is autorickshaws and I'm sure the drivers round here have learnt any amount of basic Anglo-Saxon from me in the last few years. When I am very cross I also hit offending vehicles with the flat of my hand - in a very Quakerly manner.

Does that mean you hit them very quietly. Is your hand fitted with a silencer?

Apropos unsafe roads for cyclists: I reckon roundabouts are appalling for them (as they are for pedestrians) and this is not helped by others having (> 0) clues about how they are to be used. It is nevertheless disconcerting to find a cyclist coming the wrong way round a roundabout, in the dark, no lights, wearing dark clothes!

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balaam

Making an ass of myself
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You mean suicyclists.

Roundabouts are dangerous, especially as some drivers assume that because you are turning off at the next exit if you are on the outside. If you are not turning off giving a right* turn signal reduces being cut off dramatically.

Opting for a route that avoids the roundabout is even better.

*If you live in a drive on the left country.

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ken
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# 2460

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Roundabouts are scary. I used to cycle to work in Canary Wharf via an underground roundabout at West Ferry Circus. I l learned how to negotiate it after some months by imitating some police motorcyclists I followed round once. They arm-signalled right on entry, moved into the middle, then went round with their left arms sticking out. It works. Almost always. Going round in the outside lane is disastrous. You need to be visible.

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Ken

L’amor che move il sole e l’altre stelle.

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Carys

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# 78

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quote:
Originally posted by Balaam:
Roundabouts are dangerous, especially as some drivers assume that because you are turning off at the next exit if you are on the outside. If you are not turning off giving a right* turn signal reduces being cut off dramatically.

Although the highway guide suggests cycling round the outside of the roundabout -- I find it a lot safer to take the path a car would take.

Carys

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To The Pain
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While I agree with ken and Carys about roundabouts, the Granite City has an infamous roundabout that is very very busy and terrifies most car drivers. I find it a lot easier to circumnavigate on a bicycle (even turning right) for several reasons - as a cyclist I am a little higher up than most drivers and can see over the central foliage to establish who is about to come on to the roundabout at each entrance, I move slower than the cars when I set off so there isn't the same pressure to squeak into a tiny space and, finally, once I am sailing around the roundabout on my upright bicycle in my flappy mac (complete with custom reflective tape) all the drivers seem to be terrified to join the roundabout until I am well out of the way.

I am very concerned for the number of international students who are clearly new to cycling and unfamiliar with the Highway Code, but hopefuly they will learn from experience quickly.

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the giant cheeseburger
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I don't find roundabouts much of an issue, to do it safely you just need to approach it as a road user (obeying traffic rules and taking the lane) rather than as a pedestrian (circumnavigating, crossing each entry and exit as a ped would). The caveat is that you need to have the legs allowing for a short and sharp acceleration so as to be closer to car speed than pedestrian speed if you want to be taken seriously as a road user. Using a roundabout is definitely preferable to the alternative of having to move across two lanes of traffic into the right-hand turn lane at a major intersection, until you start talking about complex arrangements with six or more roads involved.

There is one roundabout on the outer edge of the Adelaide parklands that I do avoid if I'm in the area because of the complex layout making it hard to come at from the west or north-west. However, if there was not such a great network of shared tracks in the parklands I would be happy using it from any direction at any time outside of afternoon peak traffic.

[ 10. October 2011, 12:55: Message edited by: the giant cheeseburger ]

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ken
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quote:
Originally posted by the giant cheeseburger:
... until you start talking about complex arrangements with six or more roads involved..

This is a picture of the south side of Vauxhall Bridge in London. Its a nightmare going southbound. 6 lanes of traffic, each signed for a different destination, and if you go under the railway bridge the road splits again into three so there are something like 9 ways out. And yoiu need to choose how to leave the junction before you enter it, which is difficult if you aren't familiar with it - you can't actually see the ways out from the bridge because there are ten-story buildings on each side and a railway station in the middle! And it is surprisingly steeply downhill (a lot of central London bridges are because the south bank is nearer water level than the north). Its horrible.

There is a fascinating helmet-cam video of cycling over the bridge here - it ends just before the worst part but you can see what I mean! And this is the same blogger talking about the uselessness of the car-dominated new plans for the bridge.

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Ken

L’amor che move il sole e l’altre stelle.

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Dinghy Sailor

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# 8507

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Unless the law says so, you don't need a helmet for normal cycling activity. Contrary to what some people would have you believe, it's not particularly dangerous.

My new favourite gadgets are these Scotchlite spoke reflectors. They cost £8 per wheel, massively increase your side visibility under headlights, and are also kinda cool.

Pedal fast. Most people pedal too slowly, in too high a gear. Someone mentioned upthread that cycling hurt their back - to that person I'd suggest dropping at least two gears. Quick pedalling puts much less strain on your back and knees. Watch the Tour de France sometime, you'll note that none of them are grinding along in too high a gear.

High end bikes now have up to 11 gears on the back wheel, not including the multiple chainrings. You don't need this. The absolute maximum number you should buy is 9 - any more will cost a lot of money and will buy you thinner rings and chains that will wear out more quickly. I have a 2x10 speed summer race bike, but that's the only place where so many gears are appropriate.

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the giant cheeseburger
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# 10942

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quote:
Originally posted by Dinghy Sailor:
Unless the law says so, you don't need a helmet for normal cycling activity. Contrary to what some people would have you believe, it's not particularly dangerous.

Bullshit.
Bullshit.
Bullshit.
Bullshit.

That's once for each time a professional medic has declared that my helmet has saved me from possible death, all in normal cycling activity.

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If I give a homeopathy advocate a really huge punch in the face, can the injury be cured by giving them another really small punch in the face?

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Surfing Madness
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# 11087

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I'm with you on the need to wear helmets and wouldn't cycle without one, but I watched this interesting talk, earlier and while I completely disagree with some of it I think it is interesting when he talks about how helmet promotion leads to fear and less cycling.

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Gwai
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# 11076

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quote:
Originally posted by the giant cheeseburger:
quote:
Originally posted by Dinghy Sailor:
Unless the law says so, you don't need a helmet for normal cycling activity. Contrary to what some people would have you believe, it's not particularly dangerous.

Bullshit.
Bullshit.
Bullshit.
Bullshit.

That's once for each time a professional medic has declared that my helmet has saved me from possible death, all in normal cycling activity.

Similarly I was in a very mild accident a month or two ago. It was so mild that no one got bruises. There were three of us involved since I was wearing my daughter on my back while biking and was hit relatively gently by a car. I would say that I was hit gently, but then I looked at my helmet. When hit, my daughter and I banged helmets, and the impact cracked my helmet. That gentle bruiseless accident might have given me a concussion if I hadn't been wearing a helmet.

Still, highly advise people not to Worry about bicycle safety. Use lights when appropriate. Wear a helmet, but also remember how many other moderately dangerous things you do like drive a car, etc. Biking is a million times healthier, cheaper, and in my opinion more fun than driving. So stick your helmet on and get out of the house! [Smile]

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A master of men was the Goodly Fere,
A mate of the wind and sea.
If they think they ha’ slain our Goodly Fere
They are fools eternally.


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aj

firewire technophobe
# 1383

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If you don't want to wear a helmet, and don't live in a country where their use is compulsory, then make up your own mind. It is a good idea to get a helmet before your first accident though, so plan accordingly for the outlay, if purchasing separately to the bike.

i've yet to hear a reason for not wearing a helmet that isn't based on vanity. The arguments about people being put off riding because they live somewhere where helmets are required, are well worn I'm sure.
Fair enough if you don't want to wear a helmet, and cite all the surveys and reports you like, but don't try to kid me that your `logical reason' for not wearing one is based on anything other than the fact that you simply don't want to wear one.

Ride carefully, responsibly and safely so as to avoid getting into a perilous situation and having an accident. This is common sense and no-one's debating that.
Accidents can still happen.

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if there's no god, then who turns on the light when you open the fridge?

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Dinghy Sailor

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# 8507

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quote:
Originally posted by Gwai:
I was in a very mild accident a month or two ago. It was so mild that no one got bruises. There were three of us involved since I was wearing my daughter on my back while biking and was hit relatively gently by a car. I would say that I was hit gently, but then I looked at my helmet. When hit, my daughter and I banged helmets, and the impact cracked my helmet. That gentle bruiseless accident might have given me a concussion if I hadn't been wearing a helmet.

It was so mild that you didn't get bruises and your helmet cracked anyway? That just shows that helmets are pretty rubbish and you may as well not bother: if such a small impact will crack a helmet, what good will it be against the sort of major impact that could actually damage your head?

It really is quite peculiar how there are so many more tales of "my helmet saved me from major head injury" than there are zombified, brain-damaged cyclists from the half of the population who don't wear the things. Is it because helmets attract idiot drivers or is it because they don't work nearly as well as people think? In the end, it doesn't really matter much, since in my country you're more likely to get killed in a mile of walking than in a mile of cycling. If you wear your helmet to bike to work, risk analysis says you should wear it when you walk to the shops too!

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Preach Christ, because this old humanity has used up all hopes and expectations, but in Christ hope lives and remains.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer

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Gwai
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# 11076

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quote:
Originally posted by Dinghy Sailor:
quote:
Originally posted by Gwai:
I was in a very mild accident a month or two ago. It was so mild that no one got bruises. There were three of us involved since I was wearing my daughter on my back while biking and was hit relatively gently by a car. I would say that I was hit gently, but then I looked at my helmet. When hit, my daughter and I banged helmets, and the impact cracked my helmet. That gentle bruiseless accident might have given me a concussion if I hadn't been wearing a helmet.

It was so mild that you didn't get bruises and your helmet cracked anyway? That just shows that helmets are pretty rubbish and you may as well not bother: if such a small impact will crack a helmet, what good will it be against the sort of major impact that could actually damage your head?
My head was the only impact point, so it was the only thing that would have been bruised. I wear a helmet despite it being easy to crack, because I don't want my head cracked or even bruised.

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A master of men was the Goodly Fere,
A mate of the wind and sea.
If they think they ha’ slain our Goodly Fere
They are fools eternally.


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Dinghy Sailor

Ship's Jibsheet
# 8507

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That's a lot of faith you're placing in your little bit of polystyrene, against all the evidence you've gathered so far. What makes you think the helmet protected you?

As it happens, polystyrene helmets are meant to absorb energy by crushing rather than cracking - a cracked helmet is most often a sign of a helmet that has failed. Was the polystyrene crushed afterwards, or just cracked?

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Preach Christ, because this old humanity has used up all hopes and expectations, but in Christ hope lives and remains.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer

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balaam

Making an ass of myself
# 4543

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Cycle helmets are designed to be used once and discarded. (that is they are designed for only one impact). I have crash tested two helmets: Once I suffered a shoulder separation, and the other time five broken ribs and a broken leg, so they were not minor accidents.

In both cases the helmets crushed but did not break. If a helmet cracks it is faulty or has been misused - do not drop it on the floor when you are not using it as this can weaken it - always place it somewhere it will not fall.

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Posts: 9049 | From: Hen Ogledd | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged
Gee D
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# 13815

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Here, even the bicycle couriers who make life difficult by riding recklessly along footpaths wear helmets. There are a few nutters (normally on the left) around who say that the compulsory wearing of helmets is an infringement of their rights, but otherwise, wearing is accepted universally.

As others have said, they a use once and throw away, rather like seatbelts.

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aj

firewire technophobe
# 1383

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Ok.
While waiting for a good argument against the wearing of helmets, I'd like to change the subject, if I may.

What's your experience of adding something to a bike to make it more comfortable and enjoyable? I like click-in shoes and pedals. Upgrading the saddle is often an important move.
Klaxon-style horns? Mudguards?

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if there's no god, then who turns on the light when you open the fridge?

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hatless

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quote:
Originally posted by aj:
Ok.
While waiting for a good argument against the wearing of helmets, I'd like to change the subject, if I may.

Here's a good argument against wearing helmets.
quote:

What's your experience of adding something to a bike to make it more comfortable and enjoyable? I like click-in shoes and pedals. Upgrading the saddle is often an important move.
Klaxon-style horns? Mudguards?

Mudguards, definitely. After that it's mainly, especially in my case, the cyclist that needs to be upgraded: bigger muscles, lighter chassis.

Your second bike should be a recumbent.

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Posts: 4531 | From: Stinkers | Registered: Sep 2002  |  IP: Logged
Welease Woderwick

Sister Incubus Nightmare
# 10424

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quote:
Originally posted by aj:
...What's your experience of adding something to a bike to make it more comfortable and enjoyable? I like click-in shoes and pedals. Upgrading the saddle is often an important move.
Klaxon-style horns? Mudguards?

I've not done it [yet] but strapping an AK47 to the top bar with a trigger mechanism on the handlebar appeals!

We have shopping baskets on ours, even on my geared machine, and they are incredibly useful. HWMBO regularly carries ridiculous quantities of shopping home from the market split between the basket and the rear carrier.

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Fancy a break in South India?
Accessible Homestay Guesthouse in Central Kerala, contact me for details

What part of Matt. 7:1 don't you understand?

Posts: 48139 | From: 1st on the right, straight on 'til morning | Registered: Sep 2005  |  IP: Logged
aj

firewire technophobe
# 1383

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quote:
Originally posted by hatless:
Here's a good argument against wearing helmets.

Ah yes - that classic. Any examples of surveys from outside the UK?

quote:

Your second bike should be a recumbent.

I'd love one! They're expensive, but I guess that comes from them being relatively more specialised to make. Two wheels or three?

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if there's no god, then who turns on the light when you open the fridge?

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Laxton's Superba
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# 228

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Does anyone else use a trailer bike, the kind where the child has his/her own seat and bars and back wheel? I am contemplating one of these, or the joiner-on bar that you use to attach a child's bike. My child is too big for a seat on the back of my bike now.
Posts: 187 | From: I wish I knew | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Coffee Cup
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# 13506

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quote:
Originally posted by Gee D: Here, even the bicycle couriers who make life difficult by riding recklessly along footpaths wear helmets. There are a few nutters (normally on the left) around who say that the compulsory wearing of helmets is an infringement of their rights, but otherwise, wearing is accepted universally.

As others have said, they a use once and throw away, rather like seatbelts.

Is there legislation in place to make helmets mandatory in Australia? I wonder is this might be contributing to the different attitudes... Here I think may be half of cyclists have helmets - I'll try to count on my journey this evening.

I cycle every day. I don't have a car (or any real need for one). I normally don't wear a helmet. The main problem is that it's just so inconvenient. At work, it's fine, I can leave it in my office. But when I go into town to shop, when I go out for dinner, basically any time when I'd be walking around with nowhere to dump my stuff, I end up with a helmet to carry. And so, given that I often go shopping, meet people for coffee, head to the cinema, or otherwise have fun after work I mostly don't wear it. This may be vanity. Or laziness. I'm not sure. I'm aware that this is neither a good argument not to wear helmets, nor a study from outside the UK, is is very definitely an anecdote. And after reading this thread about helmets, I wore mine this morning (plus I'm coming straight home after work so it won't get in my way).

Other safety related things for cyclist to consider are good lights, sufficient carrying capacity (I dislike having a backpack on while cycling) and avoiding cycling on the yellow lines wherever possible. If the road is wide enough to cycle further out from the pavement/sidewalk then do so; if it is not the don't encourage cars to dangerously overtake where there isn't enough space.

Much better to talk about are the 'fun' thing. I have a very large bell which makes me happy when I ring it. I have both front and rear baskets and my bike is a 3-speed workhorse with a very low step through frame which allows me to wear skirts and dresses. I cycle in heels; the inside of the heel does get damaged over time, but it's easier to cycle in heels than to walk in them (wedges are much harder to cycle in than regular heels). Finally, I have a little wing mirror which sticks out of my right handlebar, this is both a fun feature and a safety feature: you can see traffic that's about to try to squish you, because it sticks out a bit your bike looks wider and you are given more space, and finally because if a car clips you, the first thing they will hit is the mirror and not you!

Posts: 66 | From: UK | Registered: Mar 2008  |  IP: Logged
Patdys
Iron Wannabe
RooK-Annoyer
# 9397

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quote:
Originally posted by Laxton's Superba:
Does anyone else use a trailer bike, the kind where the child has his/her own seat and bars and back wheel? I am contemplating one of these, or the joiner-on bar that you use to attach a child's bike. My child is too big for a seat on the back of my bike now.

Yes I have a hitch bike. Has a back wheel and seat and chain pedals so the child can help pedal. attaches via a coupling to behind the seatpost.
You can also buy small fully fledged bikes that connect to an adult bike via a pole and double coupling. of the two, the joiner bar seems more adaptable. Let the child ride independent until tired and then hook onto the adult bike.

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balaam

Making an ass of myself
# 4543

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quote:
Originally posted by aj:
What's your experience of adding something to a bike to make it more comfortable and enjoyable? I like click-in shoes and pedals. Upgrading the saddle is often an important move.
Klaxon-style horns? Mudguards?

Mudguards are a must. So is a rack and panniers, so much better to carry your stuff on the bike rather than your back. Good lights. Good waterproofs.

Good tyres are a must, bikes from a chain store aimed at motorists (you know who I mean if you are in the UK) often come with poor tyres. Michelin, Continental and Schwalbe are makes I'd recommend.

As for clipping your feet to the pedals, for me it is a must, as I have an arthritic foot so one leg does all the work. I also have more gears on the bike than I'd recommend to someone not carrying some injury. But yes clipping your feet in whether you use the modern and expensive clip in shoes and pedals or, like me, old fashioned clips do make cycling easier, once you've got used to them, as effort can be made when lifting the leg as well as pushing down on the pedal.

As I ride a hybrid, I'm thinking about butterfly handlebars, any thoughts?

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Posts: 9049 | From: Hen Ogledd | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged
Laxton's Superba
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# 228

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Thanks Patdys
How safe do you think these things are - I mean, would you ride on a road with one on the back, or restrict to cyclepaths? I see you can get flags to stick on the back but.......

Posts: 187 | From: I wish I knew | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
hatless

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# 3365

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quote:
Originally posted by aj:
quote:
Originally posted by hatless:
Here's a good argument against wearing helmets.

Ah yes - that classic. Any examples of surveys from outside the UK?

There are plenty of population studies - not sure if that's quite the right term - that look at the before and after effects of laws making helmets compulsory. In Australia and New Zealand and some US states this has happened, and the survey seem to show that cycling has become no safer, sometimes more dangerous. Accident and emergency figures show that people with helmets seem to suffer less serious injuries, but the population studies suggest that helmets make cycling more dangerous.

It could be cars driving more recklessly around helmeted cyclists, as in Ian Walker's survey. It could be that cyclists take more risks when wearing helmets. It could be that only the more reckless cyclists remain on the roads after legislation that underlines the risk of serious injury.

What we do know is that cycling is a very safe activity, comparable to walking, much safer than horse riding, and slightly safer than driving in Belgium. The health benefits from the exercise effortlessly outweigh the risks from accidents.

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Posts: 4531 | From: Stinkers | Registered: Sep 2002  |  IP: Logged
balaam

Making an ass of myself
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I still think that the safest way to deal with drivers that pass you too closely, that study notwithstanding, is to ride far enough from the kerb so that if someone passes you too closely you have room to manoeuvre.

As for those safety statistics, having recently been in Belgium, I am straining to think of something more dangerous than driving there. Having said that Belgian consideration for cyclists by motorists is much higher than in the UK. I only saw one example of a car parked on a cycle lane, and that had German licence plates.

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Posts: 9049 | From: Hen Ogledd | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged
Lola

Ship's kink
# 627

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quote:
Originally posted by Patdys:

The number of bikes you want is always N+1 where N is the number of bikes you have.

The number of bikes you have is N=D-1, where D is the number of bikes that would result in Divorce.

For me, N=4 currently.
(2 roadies= [1 group rides/flats and 1 hill climber], 1 hybrid/commuter and 1 tribike)

Hmm - this is a very accurte description. I personally have 3 bikes (1 roadie, 1 mountain bike, 1 hybrid/commuter) but I am unable to determine N for Mr Lola since he always has a number which are in component pieces in both the shed and the house. Pursuit of the subject will develop quickly into an argument as to whether various frames, handle bars, group sets, wheels should be considered or not. So to increase the value of N - have some of your bikes in bits.
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Sioni Sais
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# 5713

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quote:
Originally posted by hatless:
What we do know is that cycling is a very safe activity, comparable to walking, much safer than horse riding, and slightly safer than driving in Belgium. The health benefits from the exercise effortlessly outweigh the risks from accidents.

i) Cycles do not bolt.
ii) Cycles do not throw or unseat their riders.
iii) No one has ever been bitten or kicked by a cycle.
iv) Cycles are not innately nasty.
v) A cycle rolling over you can cause bumps, scrapes and bruises. I suppose it may be worse, but don't, ever, get under a horse.

They are hardly comparable. Riding a horse is virtually a dangerous sport.

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Posts: 24276 | From: Newport, Wales | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
ken
Ship's Roundhead
# 2460

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quote:
Originally posted by aj:

What's your experience of adding something to a bike to make it more comfortable and enjoyable? I like click-in shoes and pedals. Upgrading the saddle is often an important move.
Klaxon-style horns? Mudguards?

I could never bring myself to use clip-on pedals. For an noncompetent like me that extra fraction of a second pulling the foot off might be a matter of life and death!

I vote against mudguards as well. After one too many struggles with tyres I took my mudguards off. In the street, near Clapham Common. At about one in the morning. Left them mangled and twisted in a rubbish bin by a bus-stop. Never regreted it for a second. Useless things, they just get in the way.


What makes cycling more comfortable and enjoyable?

1) liberal and frequent applications of WD40

2) puncture-resistant kevlar tyres. Worth every penny. Went down from weekly punctures (three in one bloody day!!!!!) to over a year with none at all. (Still didn't put mudguards back on though!)

quote:
Originally posted by aj:

i've yet to hear a reason for not wearing a helmet that isn't based on vanity.

Although I am in favoue of using helmets sometimes I have sometimes had to take it off in very hot weather because I overheated to the point I was having trouble keeping control of the bike. Sweat getting into my eyes and so on. Also if I get too hot I get confused and panicky.

Yes, maybe that's time to stop cycling. But if you are on your way to work and there are still some miles to go...

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L’amor che move il sole e l’altre stelle.

Posts: 39579 | From: London | Registered: Mar 2002  |  IP: Logged
aj

firewire technophobe
# 1383

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quote:
Originally posted by ken:
Although I am in favoue of using helmets sometimes I have sometimes had to take it off in very hot weather because I overheated to the point I was having trouble keeping control of the bike. Sweat getting into my eyes and so on. Also if I get too hot I get confused and panicky.

Fair point. I guess at least helmets are generally better ventilated than they used to be.

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Coffee Cup
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# 13506

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quote:
Originally posted by ken:
I could never bring myself to use clip-on pedals. For an noncompetent like me that extra fraction of a second pulling the foot off might be a matter of life and death!

I'd mainly stuck with the 'I can't wear heels if I have complicated pedals' approach, but that does sound like a mark against them for the casual cyclist.


quote:
Originally posted by ken:
I vote against mudguards as well. After one too many struggles with tyres I took my mudguards off. In the street, near Clapham Common. At about one in the morning. Left them mangled and twisted in a rubbish bin by a bus-stop. Never regreted it for a second. Useless things, they just get in the way.

The only problems I've ever had with my mudguards are when knocks pushed my front mudguard onto the front tyre (acting as a very good brake!). Application of brute force bent the attaching do-hickey back into place. I find them very useful, the insides of them are filthy and I'd prefer not to get the big stripe of mud up my back that some cyclists seem to sport. Maybe if you change clothes after cycling then they are less important?
Posts: 66 | From: UK | Registered: Mar 2008  |  IP: Logged
aj

firewire technophobe
# 1383

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quote:
Originally posted by Coffee Cup:
quote:
Originally posted by ken:
I could never bring myself to use clip-on pedals. For an noncompetent like me that extra fraction of a second pulling the foot off might be a matter of life and death!

I'd mainly stuck with the 'I can't wear heels if I have complicated pedals' approach, but that does sound like a mark against them for the casual cyclist.

Stay with what you're comfortable with.

Personally, it's on longer, continuous rides that I really notice the comfort and ease that goes with having feet properly attached to the pedals. There's a learning curve, but soon it becomes instinctive to release your feet with an outward flick - much better than those toe strap things. I use them for all riding, except when I've got a kid in a child seat or trailer, in which case I just use regular shoes (and a different bike, usually).

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if there's no god, then who turns on the light when you open the fridge?

Posts: 2994 | From: ...on location | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
TomOfTarsus
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# 3053

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quote:
Originally posted by Sioni Sais:
quote:
Originally posted by hatless:
What we do know is that cycling is a very safe activity, comparable to walking, much safer than horse riding, and slightly safer than driving in Belgium. The health benefits from the exercise effortlessly outweigh the risks from accidents.

i) Cycles do not bolt.
ii) Cycles do not throw or unseat their riders.
iii) No one has ever been bitten or kicked by a cycle.
iv) Cycles are not innately nasty.
v) A cycle rolling over you can cause bumps, scrapes and bruises. I suppose it may be worse, but don't, ever, get under a horse.

They are hardly comparable. Riding a horse is virtually a dangerous sport.

vi) Cycles do not leave "horse apples" for others to ride through!

We rode an asphalt trail in central Ohio a couple of months ago that was shared with the local Amish. It was fun and all, but you sure had to watch out for them horse apples!

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By grace are ye saved through faith... not of yourselves; it is the gift of God; not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath ... ordained that we should walk in them.

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BashfulAnthony
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# 15624

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Apropos nothing, I just bought myself one of the new e-16 electric bikes. Super thing, and damned expensive. I used to ride a scooter for work and this is just like one, except for the power of course. All the usual things for cyclists apply , naturally; and a helmet is first on the list.
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BashfulAnthony
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# 15624

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Apropos nothing, I just bought myself one of the new e-16 electric bikes. Super thing, and damned expensive. I used to ride a scooter for work and this is just like one, except for the power of course. All the usual things for cyclists apply , naturally; and a helmet is first on the list.
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Gee D
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# 13815

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Helmets are compulsory on NSW, and I assume other states and territories - perhaps not the NT, where there's a totally different mindset to such things as road safety.

The evidence here is that there has been a very substantial reduction in head injuries following the near universal wearing of helmets. There has not been a statistically significant rise in other injuries beyond that atributable to an increase in cycling.

As far as heat is concerned, many of the helmets on the market here have pronounced ribs for ventilation. From the look of them, the ribs would also add to the strength of the helmet.

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Posts: 7028 | From: Warrawee NSW Australia | Registered: Jun 2008  |  IP: Logged
Dinghy Sailor

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# 8507

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quote:
Originally posted by Gee D:
Helmets are compulsory on NSW, and I assume other states and territories - perhaps not the NT, where there's a totally different mindset to such things as road safety.

The evidence here is that there has been a very substantial reduction in head injuries following the near universal wearing of helmets.(my italics)

That's interesting. Are you sure those reductions aren't simply in line with a reduced number of cyclists? The pattern across Australia seems to be that the principal effect of mandatory helmet laws is to reduce cycling, although I'm not aware of any studies in NSW since 1993, 2 years after you introduced compulsion.

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the giant cheeseburger
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# 10942

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quote:
Originally posted by Dinghy Sailor:
quote:
Originally posted by Gee D:
Helmets are compulsory on NSW, and I assume other states and territories - perhaps not the NT, where there's a totally different mindset to such things as road safety.

The evidence here is that there has been a very substantial reduction in head injuries following the near universal wearing of helmets.(my italics)

That's interesting. Are you sure those reductions aren't simply in line with a reduced number of cyclists? The pattern across Australia seems to be that the principal effect of mandatory helmet laws is to reduce cycling, although I'm not aware of any studies in NSW since 1993, 2 years after you introduced compulsion.
The general trend in recent times in South Australia (with compulsory helmets) is actually an increase in cycling. Just don't expect that any of the evidence for helmet use to be reported on an anti-helmet lobby site like the one you linked to.

Regarding the claim upthread that wearing a helmet makes the head overheat, no regular bike helmet I've seen in the last ten years (other than the full-face ones downhillers wear) should cause that thanks to ventilation standards. The front of the helmet should actually catch sweat and absorb it in the padding before it runs down the face, and if there's too much sweat for that wearing a headband underneath the helmet should help.

There are other practical reasons that helmets can be useful, like for mounting a video camera, the serious business of defending against swooping magpies and mounting extra lights for night cycling.


The most important things to add for better cycling would be...
- Quality tyres. I use Maxxis Overdrive slicks with kevlar belts and 3M reflective sidewalls.
- Bottle cages on both the bottom tube and seat tube.
- A compact pump so you can assist people with flat tyres. Of course if you have you'll never need it, but the day you leave it home disaster will strike!
- A computer so you can track your speed at any time and track whether your fitness is improving over time, especially if you have a ride you do quite regularly.
- A rack and either panniers or a trunk bag if you need to haul around stuff. Use racks that attach at the holes just above the rear axle and at the top of the rear stays, and avoid at all costs the ones that clamp onto just the seat post and swing around.
- A hydration pack if you're riding in warm weather, even the cheap ones will keep at least 1.5L quite cold for hours on end, even in >35°C when the weather is officially forecast as "hot" instead of "fine".

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If I give a homeopathy advocate a really huge punch in the face, can the injury be cured by giving them another really small punch in the face?

Posts: 4834 | From: Adelaide, South Australia. | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
Gee D
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# 13815

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TGCB beat me to it. I've been working in the interim.

The assertions are not supported by any figures, and reference to the Bureau of Statistics figures will show that there has been an increase in sales of bikes since helmets became compulsory. Anyone walking/driving around will see many more cycles in use at weekends, than there were 20 years ago. There is in fact little use of cycles as transport to and from work. In my area of suburban Sydney, that is due to topography. There are simply too many steep hills to be climbed to make cycling to work (as opposed to recreational use at weekends) viable.

On the other hand, several schools that I know of have parents cycling groups organised at weekends. That certainly did not occur 20 years ago.

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Welease Woderwick

Sister Incubus Nightmare
# 10424

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This cycle helmet discussion is almost a separate theme; can I suggest that if you want to continue with that particular bit you open a thread for it in Purgatory? That way it won't swamp this thread.

Thanks.

WW
All Saints Host

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Posts: 48139 | From: 1st on the right, straight on 'til morning | Registered: Sep 2005  |  IP: Logged
the giant cheeseburger
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# 10942

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I'm not sure that the helmet debate would work too well in Purg, the problem being that the anti-helmet position is marked by extensive cherry-picking of reports based on sketchy anecdotal evidence. A rational discussion would simply not be possible so I'm not going to bother starting or engaging in it.

quote:
Originally posted by Gee D:
TGCB beat me to it. I've been working in the interim.

The assertions are not supported by any figures, and reference to the Bureau of Statistics figures will show that there has been an increase in sales of bikes since helmets became compulsory. Anyone walking/driving around will see many more cycles in use at weekends, than there were 20 years ago. There is in fact little use of cycles as transport to and from work. In my area of suburban Sydney, that is due to topography. There are simply too many steep hills to be climbed to make cycling to work (as opposed to recreational use at weekends) viable.

On the other hand, several schools that I know of have parents cycling groups organised at weekends. That certainly did not occur 20 years ago.

Adelaide also has the problem of topography, the city being surrounded by hills from the south-west right around to the north-east, most of which have further suburban areas beyond the greenbelt of the hills face zone. The terrain makes for fantastic car rally stages and Tour Down Under cycling stages, but not for cycling as a form of transport open to anyone but enthusiastic cyclists. All of the roads crossing into the hills are good for cycling down (just blend with the traffic) and some are good for going up (with good bike lanes), and there are four dedicated cycle routes and two train routes that help as well, but on the whole it does make it tough with the undulating terrain you get once you get into the hills. One oddity is that for the Belair railway line it is quicker to cycle to the city from Belair (11km), but quicker to use the train for the return journey from Belair to the city (21km).

For me to get home from a place down on the Adelaide plains involves climbing for at least 250 metres of elevation for me on gradients of up to 12%, depending on the route. This rules out the casual cyclist in this area from doing anything more than journeys under 3km to the shops or a school, and restricts commuting by bike to enthusiastic cyclists.

The good thing in Adelaide is that the provision of good routes for cycling is slowly improving. The number of roads with adequate bike lanes is increasing, as is the number of signed cycle routes using secondary roads and non-road tracks, and the various routes are finally getting linked together. As I said before, we now have four cycle-specific routes that cross the hills face zone. Unfortunately the newest of these routes was built by the local council with a quite inappropriate layout, the gradient reaching 20% (1 in 5) at one point just before reaching a hairpin bend!

A major part of the reason that cycling is increasing in Adelaide is that we also host the Tour Down Under, which is the only internationally significant race in Australia. Thanks to the drug-free efforts of Cadel Evans kicking the butts of the world's best in the World Championships a couple of years ago and getting a convincing win in the Tour de France this year, this should only get bigger and better. For the race in 2012 it has been announced that Eddy Mercx will attend it and participate in the community ride on the route of the fourth stage!

[ 12. October 2011, 03:39: Message edited by: the giant cheeseburger ]

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If I give a homeopathy advocate a really huge punch in the face, can the injury be cured by giving them another really small punch in the face?

Posts: 4834 | From: Adelaide, South Australia. | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
balaam

Making an ass of myself
# 4543

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quote:
Originally posted by the giant cheeseburger:
For me to get home from a place down on the Adelaide plains involves climbing for at least 250 metres of elevation for me on gradients of up to 12%, depending on the route. This rules out the casual cyclist in this area from doing anything more than journeys under 3km to the shops or a school, and restricts commuting by bike to enthusiastic cyclists.

That sounds like my commute. A fast descent for just over the first mile, followed by a route along the valley bottom. (This sounds scenic, but it isn't, it is industrial.) The payback comes on the return journey. But I like it this way round, I don't mind struggling to get home, but if I had to struggle to get to work I might take the easy option of the bus.

But even with the correct bike and enough gears someone like me (57 years old with an arthritic foot) can manage these gradients.

Or maybe that's just me. When I was younger, fitter and slimmer I used to seek out 25% gradients just for the fun of it.

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Posts: 9049 | From: Hen Ogledd | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged
balaam

Making an ass of myself
# 4543

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That's 25% uphill. It is far too steep to be any fun to descend unless you are addicted to terror.

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Posts: 9049 | From: Hen Ogledd | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged
daisymay

St Elmo's Fire
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I don't have clip-on pedals, and I always wear whatever on my feet work well on the bike, and so often I have to take "indoor" clean ones to work or visiting someone. I make sure the bike is safe by sensible 'shoes' etc. If they were slippy, or not sticking sensibly on the pedals, they would be more likely to have us having some kind of accident.

I also am one who doesn't wear a helmet, but I'm wondering to buy one for myself and my son as he has two little ones who wear their helmets on a small bike etc. I suppose it would be sensible for them to grow up and wear helmets in London... one of my friends was knocked down in Harrow Road and did not be wearing his helmet - his head and face was damaged and needed operation. He always wears his helmet on his bike now.

The bikes people hire, good high, strong, lighted bikes were originally said to have to be used with helmets but nowadays many many don't wear helmets. The other thing is that many people in London do not have lights on their bikes or their helmets - that is unsafe for us at night when it's dark - the buses and cars etc might not see us. And car people often open their doors and hit a bike coming past, without having looked to see if they should open their door.

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Welease Woderwick

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# 10424

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Nephew Person cycles to a friend's house every morning, leaves his bike and walks to the bus. I/we insist he cycles home on the back lanes as it is always dark by then and the main road is lethal.

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What part of Matt. 7:1 don't you understand?

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