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Old 11-14-04, 08:36 PM   #1
Diggy18
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Turning lights OFF for safety

Hey does anybody ever turn off their lights at night so as not to make themselves an easy target for mischeif?

I was riding through this county park tonight. It used to all belong to mental hospital, but now it's a series of paths winding through farmland. The hospital is still there somewhere, too. There's also the local rumor of the Satan's Circle on the grounds somewhere in a copse of trees. Plus the park is on the edge of the county capital, which is known for its crime.

So as I rode through I thought that I should turn off my lights and go into "stealth mode". I've done that in a shady area of town, too.
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Old 11-14-04, 08:46 PM   #2
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hmm, that's a pickle of a situation. if you turn it off, you avoid mischief and the likes, but your chances of getting run over increase, and vice versa. but given the situation, i'd probably do the same, but stay wayyyyyyyyyyyyyy off to the side of the road
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Old 11-14-04, 08:51 PM   #3
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I would just stay out of that park.
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Old 11-15-04, 06:51 AM   #4
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Wear a necklace of garlic and you should be safe, oh wait, that's for vampires.
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Old 11-15-04, 07:51 AM   #5
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Wear a necklace of garlic and you should be safe, oh wait, that's for vampires.
That begs the question of: Would Vampire cyclists show up in your take-a-look bike mirror?


Jay
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Old 11-15-04, 05:51 PM   #6
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Sounds cool. There is a house in the old part of town here that causes all of your bike lights to switch off.
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Old 11-16-04, 09:05 AM   #7
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In Tunisia, NOBODY use lights after dark! Many years, I commute nel Italia & in France with lights front & rear, reflector, tape, gilet, casque, etc... I make sure I seen. I begin commute here, look like Christmas tree with wheels. Work people tell me- no lights! no reflectors! Or you will be easy target for shooters! (Algeria very close by, loro sono tutti pazzi.)

Lights in city, yes, okay. But on road to/from plant, open place, even car have no lights. Also, by day, best is to look like vagabond. Never wash bike, wear old military sopratutto, even Arab kefiya - head scarf.
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Old 11-16-04, 09:32 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Vittorio
In Tunisia, NOBODY use lights after dark! Many years, I commute nel Italia & in France with lights front & rear, reflector, tape, gilet, casque, etc... I make sure I seen. I begin commute here, look like Christmas tree with wheels. Work people tell me- no lights! no reflectors! Or you will be easy target for shooters! (Algeria very close by, loro sono tutti pazzi.)

Lights in city, yes, okay. But on road to/from plant, open place, even car have no lights. Also, by day, best is to look like vagabond. Never wash bike, wear old military sopratutto, even Arab kefiya - head scarf.
Ever thought of moving? Something sounds unsafe about sharing the road with gunmen and non-headlighted cars.
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Old 11-16-04, 09:50 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Diggy18
Hey does anybody ever turn off their lights at night so as not to make themselves an easy target for mischeif?

I was riding through this county park tonight. It used to all belong to mental hospital, but now it's a series of paths winding through farmland. The hospital is still there somewhere, too. There's also the local rumor of the Satan's Circle on the grounds somewhere in a copse of trees. Plus the park is on the edge of the county capital, which is known for its crime.

So as I rode through I thought that I should turn off my lights and go into "stealth mode". I've done that in a shady area of town, too.
>> Why would you go along into a Park that is in a high crime area at night ??? that is asking for trouble might not now but during one ride it could happen and no one is around to hear you scream , either go in a group for the night ride or don't go in at all , but your choice ....Steeker
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Old 11-16-04, 10:08 AM   #10
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Riding on the boulevard at night and riding in areas with no cars are two very different things.

When I lived in Los Gatos the bike shop crew did lots of night rides in both large and small groups. I have many stories and much experience in this as it is one of my favorite types of rides.

The people on this forum don’t seem to post stories so I have refrained from that, but here is a bit of background.

There are many types of night riding but certainly one of the most thrilling is the stealth ride. This is where you dress in black have a black lycra cover for your helmet and remove or cover anything on the bike that would reflect light.
Most of us had a night specific bike for these forays in to the darkness. Dark anodized rimes and black spokes and hubs, acid etched derailleur cages and breaks, black lycra tubes for seat posts and painted cassettes.

The birth of these extreme measures predates my inclusion in the group, but are founded in the fact that many of the truly fine riding areas are closed at dusk The road out to Lake Ranch, Sandborn park, Nycine Marks The Headlands etc. Even St Joseph’s hill is off limits at night. Well this is just unacceptable, and ways to avoid detection and capture were devised.
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Old 11-16-04, 10:13 AM   #11
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Ah so that´s what stealth biking is all about eh? To get into places where you´re not allowed to be I love riding my bike around Reykjavik at 3 am but I don´t necessarily try not to be seen. Besides, there´s no one out at that time of night anyway. Ever notice that it seems like you´re going faster when it´s darker
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Old 11-16-04, 10:30 AM   #12
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You'd think a truly stealth bike would be an all black fixie. No derailler noise either.
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Old 11-16-04, 11:05 AM   #13
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Most night rides do not entail technical climes or descents so most of us run a double and an old sun-tour 6 speed hub because the cogs are black and you get a strong wheel with a near equal dish. There are a lot more lets say less than graceful unplanned dismounts during a night ride than during the day, so the bike must be up for it. There is no question that silence is a virtue in this type of endeavor but the truth is all of us have mastered the silent shift long before ever being invited on one of these rides. The real trick is stifling the announcements that are common in close single track riding.

Long fast descents on a moonlight washed fire road would loose all their appeal if you were on a fixie.
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Old 11-16-04, 12:36 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steele-Bike
Ever thought of moving? Something sounds unsafe about sharing the road with gunmen and non-headlighted cars.
Moving... good idea. Tunisia is big Club Med, terrani golf, all for the tourists... But not too sublime after all... Algeria surround us to west & Libya to east... bad influence, both. But this is fixed-duration tour only. For 4 yrs I run the plant here... with less than halfway to go. After, I am to be only 50, but investments perhaps allow me to retire some place not too expensive. Torino... too expensive. Paris... much too expensive. Presently I look to Greece, perhaps Mexico. (Hmmmmm... opa or olé?)

Meanwhile, food is great, weather is... dry, bicycle ride is beautiful on mountains to coast of mediterraneo.
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Old 11-16-04, 01:50 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Vittorio
allow me to retire some place not too expensive. Torino... too expensive. Paris... much too expensive. Presently I look to Greece, perhaps Mexico. (Hmmmmm... opa or olé?)
Chile (never been there, but it should be similar to California, but cheaper and more spanish speaking).

And, yes, I have turned off lights for safety riding in a downtown area that wasn't the safest, but had street lighting. People under the influence can be unpredictable at times.
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Old 11-17-04, 09:31 AM   #16
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Never done that. I don't think like a victim, I think like a vehicle.

The only time I turn my lights off is on deserted, familiar country roads, just to bask in the wonderful quiet dark moon-on-the-hedgerows loveliness of night riding.
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