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Advocacy & Safety Cyclists should expect and demand safe accommodation on every public road, just as do all other users. Discuss your bicycle advocacy and safety concerns here.

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Old 01-02-05, 03:12 AM   #1
Jeffery
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I rode my bike the whole time on the right side of the street but using a good enough area to stay safe! Not as scared anymore. I know that its a risk no matter what so heck with it. Just be as careful and watchful as you can be. I wanted to take the center of the lane the whole way but never did. Not even sure if that would be a good idea. I think some people may do that but not sure.

I took the middle of the lane when I was turning or stopped for a light as well like I should.

I hope that the more often I do this the less scared and worried I am.

Thanks everyone!
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Old 01-02-05, 03:17 AM   #2
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o_O when you say 'right,' I assume you meant the right hand side? Which side had you been riding on before?
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Old 01-02-05, 03:33 AM   #3
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Yes the right hand side.

I use to ride on the sidewalk sometimes and the very little edge of the bike lane on the right hand side but I learned that its ok to not ride that close to the right side of the right lane. Plus to use the center of the right lane when need be. Though I think some people take the center of the right lane all the time. Not sure if I could ever do that. Maybe. Not even sure it would be a good idea.


I did take you alls advice though. I wave at all the people that beep their horn. I bet that will get them wondering what in the heck is he doing? lol

At least its not anything mean. Just waving at them.
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Old 01-02-05, 08:05 AM   #4
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There have been 2 cycling periods in my life. The first when I was a kid and up into college. During that period, I was clueless, invincible and took joy in creating headaches for cars. It is a wonder I survived. I rode all over Baltimore and Washington DC with abandon and learned how to deal mentally with lots of traffic. That mentality served me well once I woke up and started to ride like I had a brain. The 2nd period began in the 80's when I bought a helmet, started to pay attention to the rules of the road, and lost that chip on my shoulder. But I still took my fair share of the road. I have always felt it to be safer than hugging the curb or the ditch. Being seen is paramount IMO. If they see you, the nice ones will go out of their way to miss you. The nasty ones, well, if they are aiming for you, where you are in the lane may be the difference between being in the ditch or almost in the ditch.

Anyway, congratulations on your first ride without fear. Sounds like you have reached a new plateau in your cycling experience. Way to go.
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Old 01-02-05, 08:06 AM   #5
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It sounds like you are doing all the right things. Good that you have the patience to just wave at the cars that beep, without being mean. Excellent. Keep up the good work. I think you will get more comfortable over time being away from the curb, I did, most people do. Keep being careful. It's encouraging that you are taking good advice and applying it to you riding. I hope we all do that.

Last edited by 2manybikes; 01-02-05 at 08:07 AM. Reason: incomplete
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Old 01-02-05, 10:57 AM   #6
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Most motorists dont want to have a collision so drive to avoid one. There are a few who enjoy giving you a scare, but even they dont want to have a collision. I dont know what part of the world you are in, but in Montreal I find most motorists considerate, a few drive without engaging their brains, but abusive motorists are very rare.
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Old 01-02-05, 11:14 AM   #7
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Yay, go you, Jeffery! Sounds like you were doing just fine - there's usually no need to take the lane the whole time.
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Old 01-02-05, 11:44 AM   #8
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hey good job.

i just got my bike a couple weeks ago, and i'm just getting used to riding more busy streets, too. doesn't it feel better than the sidewalk, though! for me, i think the only thing that will need a little guts are left-turns (and even that's common sense). we don't have many cyclists around here in the suburbs, and it also made me feel better to come here and find out that it IS ok to ride in the street/take upthe lane/or whatever for safety.
seriously nobody told me that (but someone actually did tell me to ride against traffic, which i don't do). good luck!
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Old 01-02-05, 04:40 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeffery
I rode my bike the whole time on the right side of the street but using a good enough area to stay safe! Not as scared anymore. I know that its a risk no matter what so heck with it. Just be as careful and watchful as you can be. I wanted to take the center of the lane the whole way but never did. Not even sure if that would be a good idea. I think some people may do that but not sure.

I took the middle of the lane when I was turning or stopped for a light as well like I should.

I hope that the more often I do this the less scared and worried I am.

Thanks everyone!
Be sure to use a rear view mirror too. If you see a goomba coming up your btut, too fast and too close, weave the bike to get his attention. There's a little bit of dancing assertive we do to take control of our lane.
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Old 01-02-05, 05:48 PM   #10
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Good job! I started riding on the road about 3 months ago and felt weird at first. There's a stretch of roadway near me that I would ride on that little 12" patch of tar to the right of the right white line. Now I ride with my tire a few inches to the left of that what line. Riding here makes it easier when I meet the riders going the wrong way or pedestrians.

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Old 01-02-05, 06:05 PM   #11
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Yes good job...

It is hard to learn to ride on the road. I am not afraid to take the lane now... expecially when the bike lanes are crap... potholes give me a major fit... and flats.
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Old 01-02-05, 06:14 PM   #12
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Yes good job...

It is hard to learn to ride on the road. I am not afraid to take the lane now... expecially when the bike lanes are crap... potholes give me a major fit... and flats.
Bike lanes. Pbbbbbt! Charlotte is starting to put them in, and I've ridden them on my bike and driven along them with my car (may it rest in pieces). Frankly, bike lanes are a well-intentioned but pure evil contrivance. I refuse to ride in them anymore, even if I'm on a road with them. They're usually full of broken glass, rocks, sticks, and trash, for one thing. Other things from the side of the road like trees and bushes overhang them, meaning either I duck or I get slapped in the face with something. Finally, they tell drivers that we don't *really* belong on the road, so they feel justified in yellling and honking at us.

Thanks, but no thanks. I'm sticking to the regular lanes. And most of the time, I ride in the path made by the autos' right wheels - no edge of the lane for me. Too many close calls that way!
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Old 01-02-05, 06:45 PM   #13
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Congrats! from another Jeffrey (different spelling). I used to hug the side like you did. Now I take more of the lane and take it completely when I know that it is dangerous for both a car to try to pass or to try to share the lane with. Most drivers slowly drive behind me and some give me plenty of room. Most drivers are afraid of cyclists and have had bad experiences (wrong way cyclists... kids etc...). Most don't want to damage their pretty car or have to deal with an accident. Today I actually had a car that was stopped beside me give me the "thumbs up" sign and honk with a smile. I knodded and figured they either thought I had a cute butt (spandex shorts) or they like cycling too! This gave me a little more confidence that not all cars are out to get me but I still ride with the attitude that everyone is out to get me since I don't know who is pro cycling and who wants us all of the road. I think when we totally let our guard down it is not helpful to keeping us in one piece.

Happy New Year!

Peace,

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Old 01-02-05, 10:26 PM   #14
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Good work. Riding on the road is sooo much better than sidewalks, but be careful of potholes. I've hit a couple on the edge of the road that have nearly tossed me off the bike (Thank you D.C. Dept. of Public Works). Be careful of bike lanes also, a lot of drivers seem to use them as just a shoulder and ignore cyclists actually using them. Just the other day I'm riding in a bike land on Hilton Head Island, SC and I come around a corner. I was trying to be careful of my bike because I was having a minor mechanical problem. I come around this corner and as I'm in the bike lane an old couple pulls over into the bike lane, parks, and gets out and goes into a restaurant right in front of me. The fact that they pulled directly in front of my and just stopped almost causing me to rearend them pissed me off so much. Just be careful, there are a lot of idiots out there behind the wheel.
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Old 01-03-05, 11:52 AM   #15
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Congratulations, Jeffery. Did you also notice that the traffic lane is smoother than the sidewalk, and you can usually ride a little faster?
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Old 01-04-05, 01:49 PM   #16
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Congratulations, Jeffery. Did you also notice that the traffic lane is smoother than the sidewalk, and you can usually ride a little faster?
Yes.
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Old 01-04-05, 01:50 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kb0tnv
I still ride with the attitude that everyone is out to get me since I don't know who is pro cycling and who wants us all of the road. I think when we totally let our guard down it is not helpful to keeping us in one piece.

Happy New Year!

Peace,

kb0tnv
Thats the exact way I ride as well because I like to be as careful as possible. Good advice!
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