Touring - I did something very dumb.
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01-21-08, 12:24 AM
Sooooo..... I took my LHT out for a ride with a buddy a few days ago, and for one reason or another, I decided to leave my bike at his place. Long story short, I picked up the bike, put it on my fork mount roof rack and went to run some errands. I'm leaving one of my stops with a really awkward parking lot, and I decide to take the back alley to leave so I don't back out into traffic. There is this garage area with a loft that I needed to drive through, and I hit the bike on the overhang, and it ripped the entire front half of the rack right off of my car. Didnt mess up the bike, put a nice fat dent in my car, along with a couple nice scratches, and the rack is a little tweaked. But everything works. A humbling moment.
01-21-08, 01:16 AM
I almost did that once!! Had two bikes up there and stopped a few inches short... A guy on the sidewalk was waving frantically to try to stop me - he saw it way before I thought about it. Glad it worked out OK in the end though...
I did a fleche (a "team" event of 360km minimum distance in 24 hours) last year. Two of the team (ie, two-thirds of the team) were late to the start because the driver hit a garage roof with TWO bikes on board. Likewise, the roofrack was ripped clean away and there was some denting of the car roof. Most importantly, the bikes were undamaged.
It can happen to anyone. The owner of the business where I work fancied himself as a truck driver... until he got stuck under an overpass because the truck was too high to fit underneath. Quite embarrassing, apparently, because it was on a busy road.
Oh, and on a more basic bicycle level, I've been MTBing and banged my head on an overhanging tree, even though I ducked. Thank goodness for helmets!
We don't seem to cope too well with vertical distance estimation.
The bike is fine. What's the problem? :D Just kidding, but, at least you learned the lesson with a minimum of damage.
01-21-08, 09:14 AM
Another good reasn NOT to have roof racks. I'd be doing this all the time.
And the thread probably really belongs in General. :) Ok it is a touring bike but still probably General. ;)
01-21-08, 10:21 AM
Sorry about that.
If it makes you feel any better I ripped a tandem off my roof at a cars only toll booth. Tandem only needed truing of the rear wheel, but the roof did not look good. Roof racks seem to be like clipless pedals, you will go down at least once with both. The clipped in pedal fall, though embarrasing, is cheap, a roof rack incident is another storry.
After I drove into my garage with the bikes up there I said no more roof racks...
01-24-08, 08:37 AM
haha, along those same lines... I went through a car wash with my bike rack on the back of my jeep. thankfully my bike was not on the rack. But it still demolished the rack and put some scratches on my jeep. Needless to say, I skipped the minute of air drying and shrunk in my seat as i bolted from the car wash before anyone saw me.
I did exactly that with an overhang at a supermarket. I got an ovalised front wheel and two dents in the roof where the carrier was pushed down. Easily done.
You are not alone (http://blogs.newsobserver.com/joemiller/index.php?title=low_clearance&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1) (unless this is you)
But even so, there are people looking out for you (http://www.driveyourbike.org/).
I used to know a guy that had a pickup camper mounted on a lifted 4x4 pickup. He put one of those 102" long steel C.B. antennas on his front bumper with a tennis ball stuck on top, cut off to be just a little taller than the top of his camper. When driving in a place with an overhead obstruction, he would slow down, and if the "sky feeler" hit anything he did a panic stop.
Wouldn't work at much over 5 mph though. Couldn't stop fast enough.
I wonder if you could rig one of those ultrasonic backup alarms up in such a way as to sound off if you approached something low, and rig it so it was mounted on your handlebars (or maybe on a folding pole or something) when the bike was on the rack? Might not work, though, if the sensor was high and you passed under a tree branch or something that barely cleared the roof.
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