Retrobike Forum Index

It is currently Fri Dec 09, 2016 4:54 am

* Login   * Register * Search  * FAQ



Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 14 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Commuting Help?
PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2011 6:56 pm 
Dirt Disciple

Joined: Thu Apr 28, 2011 10:17 am
Posts: 25
Location: Reading
Today was my 1st day commuting in a long time (over 3 years) and in those days I used a mountain bike

Having decided to start using a bike for work again I decided on a road bike and I loved my old richard virenque/team festina rep Peugeot (now in need of several costly parts) so I bought my Falcon Olympic

However, I found the awful road surfaces made the ride really uncomfortable - is this down to the bike, me not riding it in the best way to minimise the impact of the lumps/bumps or is it just an occupational hazard I'll have to deal with?

Also there is a lot of stopping and startind due to traffic lights, junctions etc, but filtering past the traffic was a nightmare due to minimal gaps betveen cars and the kerb/parked cars, other hazards - is it acceptable to filter down the outside of the lane? :/

And is is silly to do things like sprint up hills to liven up the jpourney a bit?

Any advice and any other hints/tips would be greatly appreciated too. :)


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2011 9:01 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Fri May 21, 2010 6:08 pm
Posts: 418
Location: U K
Im not sure what a falcon olympic is but if its a road bike and your used to a mountain bike it might well feel like a harsher ride. You could fit fatter tyres or maybe just persevere and get used to the bike?
If your commuting to work then try looking for a better route - Im lucky enough to have the Bristol to Bath path by my back door and it literally ends by my offices front door - no cars bumps or junctions ( just suicidal pedestrians!!)


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2011 10:19 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:31 pm
Posts: 1112
If you go here you can search your town for routes on the national cycle
network, which consists of routes that are generally not so traffic heavy and are more pleasant to ride:

http://www.sustrans.org.uk/

I wouldn't filter down the outside of cars - cars and trucks turning right
don't usually expect bikes to be there. It's infuriating that people don't
leave enough room for bikes, but there's not much you can do - maybe get a fixie with super narrow bars?

Johnny


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2011 10:40 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Fri Apr 28, 2006 8:42 pm
Posts: 783
Location: Brighton
Ease the bike over poor surfaces. Move your weight backwards or forwards or spring upwards before a pothole to lighten the bike. Imagine a bunny hop where you don't leave the ground.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri May 06, 2011 10:05 am 
Retro Guru
User avatar

Joined: Mon Apr 11, 2011 9:51 am
Posts: 1046
Location: W.yorkshire
yeah just stand up over the worst bumps, it depends on the conditions to be honest...my commute has long stretches of pavement that have never seen pedestrians! so when its tight i just jump onto the pavement so long as there are no pedestrians around.

Mind you i'm a big coward and get off to walk my bike across the worst junctions, id rather take a little bit longer than wind up duck pizza.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat May 07, 2011 5:55 pm 
Retro Guru
User avatar

Joined: Mon Mar 02, 2009 4:22 pm
Posts: 1482
Sorry to hear about your rough roads. I'm able to miss the worst of it on my ride but there are a few where the bike takes a battering. Keep your tyres at top pressure to minimise punctures. For example, 700x23's want about 100psi in the front and 110psi in the back. If you leave them at 80psi or lower you risk pinch punctures. I have 27x1-1/4" tyres on my other road bike and it is a lot smoother on the bumps. Those tyres sit at about 70psi front and 80psi rear.

As for filtering on the right, I do. Unfortunately, years on mopeds has got me in bad habits so I tend to to it purely out of instinct. But you must realise that cars won't expect you to be there and you can't stop as fast as a moped can! Do it at your own risk!

My main advice is be brave and be assertive. People in cars will try and bully you but don't forget they don't want their precious shitboxes scratched. Take plenty of space, don't get pushed around, if you think there isn't enough space for a car to pass you comfortably then ride further out so there's no chance of them overtaking. You can always move into the space you've left for yourself, but you can't if you're already in it.

Final point: of course it's not silly to sprint up hills. Or overtaking other cyclists. Especially if they are in all the gear on a new carbon bike and you're on a rusty old 5-speed racer with a buckled rear wheel :D


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat May 07, 2011 7:03 pm 
Dirt Disciple
User avatar

Joined: Mon Feb 07, 2011 8:28 pm
Posts: 66
Location: North Essex
Johnsqual wrote:

I wouldn't filter down the outside of cars - cars and trucks turning right
don't usually expect bikes to be there.
Johnny


I think it's worth pointing out that filtering down the outside is much, much safer than filtering down the *inside* of traffic! Whether you choose to do it depends upon your confidence, the nature of the road and the traffic situation.

If I do it, and I often do, I filter down the outside carefully - greatly reduced speed, so that I can stop before I get to any car which may suddenly move across my line without warning or any door which may suddenly be opened on me. Give as much space as possible, obviously, and look into wing mirrors to see what the driver's doing.

As for the discomfort angle, check your position on the bike. A lot of novices set the 'bars too high; this makes the bike hard to control and means that the impact all goes straight up your bottom. :shock:


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2011 11:47 am 
Dirt Disciple

Joined: Thu Apr 28, 2011 10:17 am
Posts: 25
Location: Reading
Thanks for all the advice guys, really appreciate it :)

Rather unfortunately, I didnt read the very last point by Simon Daw until now and its too late!! I know my seat is a little low in comparison to the bars but didnt think it'd have that much effect.

Now after my ride in this morning my lower back is stuffed and I'm struggling to sit / stand, which I guess is a combination of my position and the weight of my back pack!

However, lots of good advice there that I'll be putting in to practice once I'm mended


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2011 10:19 pm 
Dirt Disciple
User avatar

Joined: Mon Feb 07, 2011 8:28 pm
Posts: 66
Location: North Essex
Oh, heck - get well soon!

To be honest, I don't think that having your bars too high / saddle too low would have done that to your back so quickly.

I hate riding with a backpack for anything but the shortest distances, though, and never ride with anything heavy on my back - investing in panniers is money well spent (my current set must be about fifteen years old now - maybe more - and they're not going to need replacing for a while yet. They get used for over 100 miles per week).

Try to get someone to help you with your position once you're up and running again. If all else fails, post some photos here - it's not ideal, but people will be able to make some comments if your position is way out.

Hope you're soon feeling better.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2011 4:13 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:31 pm
Posts: 1112
Hey,

Sorry to obsess on the filtering question, but I wonder what the legal situation is about it - is it actually against the law? Do cyclists have to
stay on the pavement side of cars?

I ask because my girlfriend was knocked off her bike by a careless person
opening their door in her face a couple of years ago (they were in a rush to catch a train, so it was their fault and they admitted it). She did quite well out of the insurance, £2000 I seem to remember. However, I wonder if it'd have been different if she had been on the other side of the car.


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 14 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 14 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  

About Us

Follow Retrobike

Other cool stuff

All content © 2005-2015 Retrobike unless otherwise stated.
Cookies Policy.
bikedeals - the best bike deals in one place
FatCOGS - Fat Chance Owner's Group

Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group