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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.

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Old 09-18-06, 06:07 PM   #1
Mchaz
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Over the Bars!

So here's my crash story for today.

I'm cruising down a main walkway (about as wide as a 2-lane road) at my university. I am cruising at a pretty good clip so I don't arrive at work late, but not too fast because there are some pedestrians around. Well all of the sudden a guy riding a bike appears in front of me. I mean, I swear he was teleported from the Enterprise right in front of me. Really though, he pulled out of a small path that runs perpendicular to the one I was on without looking. Of course by the time the impulses from my brain hit my muscles I could barely squeeze the brake lever before I slammed into his back wheel. I get pitched right over the bars and land hard on my right shoulder. He sticks around a bit to make sure I'm okay (nice guy), and apologizes. The flock of on-lookers mosey on to their next class, and everyone is fine (well except for me rubbing my shoulder). The kicker is the guy I hit didn't even fall over!

Damage report:
My bike: Just fine. It may have acquired a few more scratches, but it's an older Cannondale mountain bike made for abuse.
His bike: Also fine. The back wheel might be a little out of true, but nothing obvious from just looking at it.
Me: Very sore right shoulder, kinda sore right ankle, miscellaneous minor scrapes, and a scratched up carabiner that I keep my keys on.

Ahh, fun day at the university. If I would have been paying better attention I probably could have burned off a little more speed before slamming into his back wheel a little further rearward. Maybe, just maybe, I could have seen him before pulling out and anticipated him cutting me off. Oh well.

The lessons re-learned, always be watching, and always assume people will cut you off.
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Old 09-18-06, 06:19 PM   #2
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Glad the hear you wlaked away with minor injuries. This summer, I caught a stick through my front spokes and went over the bars into a gravel path. Nothing serious, but parts of my body were hurting for days afterwards. Hopefully you won't find any more serious problems emerging overnight!
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Old 09-18-06, 06:57 PM   #3
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Since the bikes were ok, I wonder if it was your braking more than the impact itself that tossed you. Not that it was necessarily avoidable even if it was. Still, it's worth saying that panic braking can throw you over the bars, and everyone should practice seeing how hard they can stop without nosediving. Just do it carefully and release the front brake if you feel your rear wheel starting to lift!
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Old 09-18-06, 07:14 PM   #4
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Glad to hear you and the bike are ok!
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Old 09-18-06, 08:32 PM   #5
Mchaz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cooker
Since the bikes were ok, I wonder if it was your braking more than the impact itself that tossed you. Not that it was necessarily avoidable even if it was. Still, it's worth saying that panic braking can throw you over the bars, and everyone should practice seeing how hard they can stop without nosediving. Just do it carefully and release the front brake if you feel your rear wheel starting to lift!
I'm pretty savvy with the ways of the front brake, I don't think that was my problem. I would think that if I flipped my self with the brake I would have gone over in more of a straight line rather than the forwards-sideways roll that happened. It was probably the result of my wheel turning abruptly on impact combined with good 'ole conservation of momentum which pitched me. Damn you physics.

Anyways, thanks for the kind words guys. I'm glad I wasn't on my road bike. I would have been sad if I tore that thing up.

Last edited by Mchaz; 09-18-06 at 08:38 PM.
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