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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 05-07-12, 01:17 AM   #1
bigfred 
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When a car pulls out in front of a 115kg Clyde barrelling along at 55kph!



On my way up the hill I notice a public works crew showing up at a midhill round-about and thought to myself, "they could be in the way on the way down". On the way back down the hill and approaching said round-about I could see that the work crew had pulled their truck off into the grass and were out of the way. There wasn't any other visible traffic to worry about. And then,......as I approached the traffic circle at approx. 55kph, a car came from the left and proceeded directing into my path, without slowing, stopping or looking for oncoming traffic.

Screeeetchhhhhhhh! I've never heard bike tires make that noise before. They Stopped! And, thank god, started again, providing me with an escape route to the left. I got the front wheel turning again just soon enough to miss them by a good couple inches. Had lost enough speed that recorrecting to the right and missing the outside curb wasn't an issue. The eyes of the works crew were wide. Mine were wide. I'm sure the car drivers were wide.

Must continue to pay attention, regardless of right of way.
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Old 05-07-12, 08:12 AM   #2
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Glad you navigated through that and are OK. Never trust anyone in driving while your riding. Probably looking ahead had prepared your mind and body to be able to react should something happen. I always look ahead/plan ahead and prepare for the worse to happen. I had this happen to me several time on the same descent on my lunch time rides. There is a business on this said hill so traffic in and out of their parking lot can be hairy. I had a pick up truck pull out in front of me an go real slow when I was descending at about 35 mph. I let out a few choice words about why he didn't see me coming. Last week descending the same hill, there was a small truck parked on the other side coming up hill. I noticed a lady in an SUV coming up the hill about a 100 yards from the parked truck. Again, I was descending at about 35 mph and I anticipated that we would be at this truck at the same time and this dumb as nails lady would swerver onto my side of the road to get around the truck with complete disregard to me being oncoming traffic. Needless to say the swerved into my lane, causing me to get close to the edge and almost in the gutter. Again I let many choice words fly because it not like she couldn't see all 235 lbs of me in my flourescent yellow jersey. Moral or the story is never trust anyone in a car while cycling (I am beginning to not trust anyone in a car while driing either) and always look ahead and anticipate what may happen to prepare yourself.
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Old 05-07-12, 08:30 AM   #3
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I'm glad you both made it OK.

When I ride I don't simply drive "defensively". I assume that everyone behind the wheel of a car is a psychopathic killer whose only goal in life is to kill me in as messy a way as possible. My goal is to make it very difficult to do so.

In a country full of numbskulls that believe it's OK to text and drive, I trust in right of way in the same way I trust bankers, lawyers and politicians.
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Old 05-07-12, 08:41 AM   #4
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Even when doing everything right these things happen. Bikes are not the obvious large objects that other cars are and even if they were those things happen anyway. Many would like to think the car drivers are full time jerks but many times they are normal people that just messed up. Of course the outcome of messing up usually ends up hurting others.

Nice job on being able to escape without injury. Rewind and try again and it could have easily turned out another way.
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Old 05-07-12, 10:33 AM   #5
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I'm starting to suspect that there aren't many "normal" people out there. I just run across too many weirdos on a daily basis and sometimes people you "know" for a year or two show up on the weirdo chart all of a sudden.

I rode motorcycles for years when I was younger, and that trains you to watch for awful car behavior. Most of the time its predictable, especially if you can see the driver's head. Tinted windows really ramp up the difficulty level though.

My new favorite car vs bike behavior is when I am on the edge of the left turn lane, turning left with the cars. I usually stop in the cross walk, so I'm right there in the vision of the lead car, usually dressed like a parrot, and not a small parrot either. We all turn left, the lead car pulls ahead of me and then suddenly turns right into the first driveway after the intersection. Now I just expect it and don't go so hard on the green turn arrow.

*sigh*
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Old 05-07-12, 10:43 AM   #6
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You know there are better ways to get your heart rate up, right?

But seriously, glad you made it out relatively unscathed.
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Old 05-07-12, 11:27 AM   #7
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Glad you both made it through Okay. Drivers really need to understand that we as cyclists are not going anywhere. More and more legislature is being passed daily. Sooner or later people may begin to turn in plates and so on, myself included.

I am in a similar boat of trusting absolutely no one behind the wheel of a vehicle. Last week, I was traveling in the opposite direction climbing a hill. I have a route that kind of switch backs through the old part of the town I live in. It is constant spinning with intervaled mashing at very "granny like gears" just to maintain momentum. Man does it give a good burn. Anyways, as i was coming to the top of the last switch back, a car was pulling out of a driveway from a church. The driver stopped, and then proceeded to pull directly out in front of me, waving to say "Thanks for letting my 200 hp gasoline driven car go ahead of you, even though your clearly pedaling using your own volition to climb this hill." I must have been moving so slowly that they thought I was stopping. Of course I was "cleat engaged." Brain said stop when they pulled out, hand hit the brake, and my rear hit the pavement. So here I am laying in the middle of the road, tires to the sky, both feet engaged. Of course the driver pulled away oblivious.

I know it may not be entirely there fault, giving the circumstances, and what could have been going through their head. However, that doesnt stop my rear end, and shoulder from hurting. Nor did it stop the instant rage I felt while lying in my own wreckage. Best part was there was a car behind me. He passed me as i was all tangled up. No decency I feel.
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Old 05-07-12, 01:04 PM   #8
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Best part was there was a car behind me. He passed me as i was all tangled up. No decency I feel.
I dunno, I went splat (through my own fault) six weeks or so ago, and made a nice tangled pile of rider and bike, and I swear, the only thing I could think of after coming to a stop was, "please.. .no one saw that, no need to stop, carry on, nothing happened, you saw NUTHIN..."

I might be a bit vain...
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Old 05-07-12, 01:37 PM   #9
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I had someone almost hit me a couple of weeks ago. I wasn't going very fast, was turning right from my street onto the street leading to the school. She came speeding around the corner and came within about two inches of hitting me. I swerved but I was only about a foot from the curb so didn't have far to move over. She had to stop and see if she had hit me, she couldn't tell. I had to stop and sit on the curb for a little while until I quit shaking.

And it turns out she's one of the other moms at the school and now she wants to stop and chat with me whenever I'm picking up the kids, as if she knows me now that she almost ran me over.
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Old 05-07-12, 03:21 PM   #10
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I wish I had stopped and examined the tire at the time. I just kept riding.....and shaking my head. Maybe I could have gotten the driver to cough up for a replacement. Those things aren't cheap around here. (nothing is) Now I'm onto a Rubino Pro, which I don't like and feel is a bit too hard, providing even less traction the next time something like this happens.

It's not as though this is a rare occurence. I would say that at least once or twice a week a car attempts to pass me on the inside of a round about while I'm signalling that I'm continuing around to the next exit. There is one circle in particular that is really bad. It's at the top of a hill, so I'm usually going fairly slowly. I signal, they attempt to pass, almost like clockwork. I though it might be my extended arm being misconstrued, so, I started ensuring that my palm is facing rearward, stop signal style. Same result.

However, yesterday's incident was on a down hill round about. I always watch it closely and generally slow if any traffic is present. In this instance, I never had a chance to see the approaching vehicle from a cross street and they didn't slow. There was approximately a second of my life where I truly thought I might be getting seriously injured.

I'm not sure if a collision had become iminent, if I would have been better off going straight into the side of the crossing vehicle or potentially hooking my bars on it's corner and spinning me to the ground. Thankfully, it was a miss. BUT, not by much. I would guesstimate that there was not more than 100mm between my hands and the tailgate. The rear tire sliding to the left is what I think kept my pedal or foot from catching the bumper.
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Old 05-07-12, 04:00 PM   #11
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I once heard a cop say....do you know how many people I have interviewed in the hospital, who had the right of way?

It stuck with me.

I am glad your ok.
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Old 05-07-12, 04:03 PM   #12
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As long as you came out ok , damage to the wheel is secondary. Ken was saying he can buy his tyres from
http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/

Cheaper than here in Aus including shipping... If they wont ship to NZ let me know and i can forward them on with a local .

As my dad taught me when i was learning to ride and drive "don't drive for your self , drive for ever other half wit and idiot out there on the road as they are the ones you have to worry about "

Good work anyway.... what was your heart rate afterwards
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Old 05-07-12, 04:56 PM   #13
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As long as you came out ok , damage to the wheel is secondary. Ken was saying he can buy his tyres from
http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/

Cheaper than here in Aus including shipping... If they wont ship to NZ let me know and i can forward them on with a local .

As my dad taught me when i was learning to ride and drive "don't drive for your self , drive for ever other half wit and idiot out there on the road as they are the ones you have to worry about "

Good work anyway.... what was your heart rate afterwards
Yep, been using CRC, Ribble and PBK. Just need to get CRC to throw in the free shipping for some total less than $400nzd, which also happens to be the personal shopping limit, above which our customs wants to start collecting:-( Got away with it once or twice, but, got nailed for $67 on the last shipment of bits. Still far cheaper than purchasing locally. 2 DT Swiss 585's plus shipping = $210nzd, 1 DT Swiss 585 purchased locally = $240nzd regardless of which shop I try to use. I recongnize that neither the shop nor the distributor is making a killing, but, something is seriously broken in the system.

Living on little tiny Bermuda, with a population of only 64,000, the shops were able to do a better job of being competitive against US retailers and mail order. I'm not buying that NZ's 4 million is too small a market to manage competitive prices. Anyhow, Mrs. Fred is not impressed that I didn't pursue the driver for some reimbursement. So, I've changed the brake pads on the car to reestablish the manly power equalibrium.

Oh, and the heart rate shows about an 8 bpm increase immediately following the decrease in speed from 57kph to 15kph:-) And, you could have cut washers from my anus.
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Old 05-07-12, 09:14 PM   #14
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First off glad you both escaped unharmed. I am getting back into cycling after a 20 year journey of learning how to type just the right things to make the computer do my bidding (computer programmer). Anyway I have never given up 2 wheels entirely I commute on a motorcycle unless its really raining/windy and for shopping I take the pickup then. I have always told people if it was a requirement for a car license to ride a motorcycle for a year without an accident the average motorist would be a whole lot more aware and safer and definately pay more attention to the 2 wheelers. There is just something about people who have 3,000 pounds of metal around them that they feel they are more entitled to a space on the road than cyclists/motorcyclists.

One lady moved into my lane and actually cursed and flipped me off while she was literally pushing me (my left side from my peg to shoulder were in contact with the right front door of her car) off onto the shoulder.
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Old 05-07-12, 10:14 PM   #15
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Wow, close one, glad you're ok!

Ride defensively...all the time!
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Old 05-08-12, 05:15 AM   #16
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Wow, close one, glad you're ok!
Tell me about it! If it weren't for the car needing new pads, I'd have no face left in the eyes of Mrs. Fred. She really thought I should have turned up hill and chased the SUV in question to demand compensation for the tire. As if,.......
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Old 05-08-12, 11:03 AM   #17
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Glad that all you lost was rubber on a tire. Thanks for the always welcome reminders!
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Old 05-08-12, 03:47 PM   #18
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Tell me about it! If it weren't for the car needing new pads, I'd have no face left in the eyes of Mrs. Fred. She really thought I should have turned up hill and chased the SUV in question to demand compensation for the tire. As if,.......
ha,

Chasing after people for Compensation would not be worth the effort. The Non-riders out there don't even seem to understand tyres cost money , at least when it comes to bikes anyway.
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