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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

View Poll Results: Should I commute in 18* weather?
Yes! I don't care if *you* get frostbite! 41 78.85%
No way! Why are you even considering commuting in Detroit? 1 1.92%
Pat Buchanan 10 19.23%
Voters: 52. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 02-12-06, 06:46 PM   #1
ElJamoquio
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Election starts today!

So, I promised myself I would commute to work for the first time tomorrow - but then I checked the forecast; 18*F and windy.

So it's time for an election!
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Old 02-12-06, 06:53 PM   #2
JohnBrooking
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The election being, I presume, should you or shouldn't you?

I would say it depends on how prepared you are for that temperature. It might be a little iffy doing it for the first time in this weather, especially if you haven't done a test ride. You probably have no idea if how you plan on dressing will be too warm or too cold. Better the former than the latter, obviously, as you can always take some off.

It would help us decide if we knew how far you were going. Less than 5 miles, go for it! More than that, I don't feel qualified to advise.
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Old 02-12-06, 06:55 PM   #3
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You're going to have to explain Pat Buchanan...
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Old 02-12-06, 07:00 PM   #4
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I also commute to work in 18* weather and it's okay. Ohh... did you mean Fahrenheit?
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Old 02-12-06, 07:27 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnBrooking
You're going to have to explain Pat Buchanan...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/U.S._pr...election,_2000

Scroll down to the butterfly ballot deal... it was a (apparently bad) joke.

Anyway, the election *is* as to whether I should commute tomorrow. It's four miles. And it's dark. And cold. I'm looking for some peer pressure, here.
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Old 02-12-06, 07:49 PM   #6
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I ride in any weather. I just wear the right clothes for the ride.
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Old 02-12-06, 08:20 PM   #7
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How long a commute? If you're going for a 20 mile each way ride for the first time in 18*F weather, I'd say you're a moron to try it (please don't take that the wrong way ).
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Old 02-12-06, 08:39 PM   #8
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Dark, huh? Do you have lights? At least reflectors and bright clothing?
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Old 02-12-06, 09:24 PM   #9
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Quote:
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Dark, huh? Do you have lights? At least reflectors and bright clothing?
I bought a 10W halogen front, and a blinkie for the back to get started on. I don't have any more reflectors than came with the bike right now, but I was planning on wearing a bright yellow jacket as the top layer.

I'm planning on going in around 6:00 AM to keep the traffic problems down. There's a real problem with insane drivers around here. Luckily I'll be on backroads for half the commute. The other half...
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Old 02-12-06, 09:32 PM   #10
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18F isn't that bad providing that you have appropriate clothing.
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Old 02-12-06, 10:22 PM   #11
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Simple:

Be prepared.

Piece o' cake.
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Old 02-12-06, 10:27 PM   #12
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4 miles? Just do it. You will be done before you even get warmed up.

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Old 02-12-06, 10:47 PM   #13
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Old 02-13-06, 01:08 AM   #14
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If I have to do it, I can't see why you can't.
Get some nice warm stuff on and get out there.
It's wonderful feeling that cool breeze on your face.
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Old 02-13-06, 01:28 AM   #15
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Dude, you request an election to determine whether you should ride your bike or not? Sheesh, what do you do when you need to go pee? A quick show of hands?
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Old 02-13-06, 08:02 AM   #16
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18*F is about where I zip up the pit zips on my jacket. Actually it was 16* this morning, and I had to stop halfway and unzip the pit zips again. It has to get down to < 10* before I stop overheating with the vents closed.
The wind can suck though.
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Old 02-13-06, 05:05 PM   #17
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Quote:
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Dude, you request an election to determine whether you should ride your bike or not? Sheesh, what do you do when you need to go pee? A quick show of hands?
Don't be silly. Everyone knows that the urination subcomittee forwards it's recommendations to the general excrement forum. If the forum is in session, a two-thirds majority is required to authorize any general urination. If the forum isn't in session... well, let's just say I need to cross my legs for a while.
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Old 02-13-06, 08:49 PM   #18
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ok, so, I do care if you get frostbite but my vote is "Yes". 18 is what? -8 C? ... Now truth is, I'd reconsider if the roads were icy and I didn't have studded tires.


So did you bike commute today or not?
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Old 02-13-06, 08:53 PM   #19
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What does 18F feel like?
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Old 02-13-06, 08:53 PM   #20
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Quote:
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ok, so, I do care if you get frostbite but my vote is "Yes". 18 is what? -8 C? ... Now truth is, I'd reconsider if the roads were icy and I didn't have studded tires.


So did you bike commute today or not?
Yup. First trip was relatively uneventful... it turns out that it only went down to about 25F. The roads and trails had a few inches of snow; there were some iced-in ruts on one bridge but that was about the only dicey part.

Part II will be tomorrow...
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Old 02-13-06, 09:21 PM   #21
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I've found that I need a ski mask because my face gets too cold from the wind. Other than that, just general warm clothes.

Studs are great for the ice though .
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Old 02-14-06, 07:05 AM   #22
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What does 18F feel like?
Not as cold as the -20 deg F (without including the wind chill) that I've seen before. But I think I mentioned that it actually ended up being 25 deg F.

It actually isn't that bad. This morning was about 28 degrees, no problem.

I think I'm going to cut it off around 15 degrees.
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Old 02-14-06, 12:47 PM   #23
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Go. Most years it gets much colder than that in Michigan, and I've survived (thrived) through 3 winters on my bike so far. Besides, for only four miles, you can get through anything! For four miles, you could ride naked if you had to.

You do have lights don't you?
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Old 02-14-06, 01:03 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ElJamoquio
So, I promised myself I would commute to work for the first time tomorrow - but then I checked the forecast; 18*F and windy.

So it's time for an election!
I commuted Monday, February 13 in Windsor, Ontario, which is about 15 miles from your location. I survived. No frostbite either. The wind was a bit of a problem but you just resign yourself to taking a little longer to get to work. Just dress for the weather. With some experience commuting in cold weather you'll figure out what works and what doesn't.
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Old 02-14-06, 01:16 PM   #25
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I didn't vote, because I didn't like the options. 18 deg F is not that cold. Dress for it. I've ridden in below 0.
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