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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: Do You Wear a Vest?
Yes, always. Only a fool doesn't wear a vest. 23 22.12%
No, never. I'm a cyclist, not a contractor. 38 36.54%
Only at night/in the rain/in heavy fog. 39 37.50%
When I remember to. . . . 4 3.85%
Voters: 104. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 01-03-07, 04:49 PM   #1
Bklyn
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Safety Vest Quest

I have a safety vest. I do, I swear. But I hate it. It's mesh, it crumples, and if I stow it in a bag, it takes up too much space. I'm looking for one of those classic "hall monitor" sashes — just a diagonal reflective sash over the shoulder connected to a reflective belt. Why can't I find this style anywhere? Anybody use this?

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Old 01-03-07, 04:55 PM   #2
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I've had the sash, it falls off. I've used the traffic ones, they suck. The one I have I got from my LBS out of the QBP, It is made by fuel belt. Very light, very reflective (reflective white, with reflective borders and reflective patch on back), and takes up no space if I cram it in a bag or fold it up, fits in a pants pocket.
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Old 01-03-07, 04:57 PM   #3
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Link? Picture?
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Old 01-03-07, 05:03 PM   #4
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I can take a photo after work.

http://www.fuelbelt.com/outdoor/visibility.html

Here is a version in red. The above link has white and red and neon. I like white. The online is cheaper than in store(8$), but I buy everything in store unless it has a huge difference, 20+ dollars.

If you see the little tab on the chest there is another one on the back about 3 1/2 by 5 inches in an oval. It does say "fuel belt". So if you hate advertising.
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Old 01-03-07, 05:11 PM   #5
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I like my crumply mesh vest. Takes up much less space in the pannier than the reflecty raincoat. (I mean, it's only in the pannier when it's wet enough for me to be wearing the raincoat instead).

I wear it when I'm loaded and commuting, but not if I'm just going for a spin for the heck of it (though I always turn my tail lights on).

Kids at daycare and K love the vest, actually. Bankers are freaked out by it.


ps-> I only have the vest 'cause a coworker gave it to me after I got hit by a car.

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Old 01-03-07, 05:13 PM   #6
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Man a lot of people call me a safety nerd...

But even so... I cant do the vest.. I just cant.

yeah...
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Old 01-03-07, 05:20 PM   #7
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I have gotten in the habit of wearing an orange hi-vis T-shirt with reflective striping. I bought an xx-large that is my top layer in the winter and in the summer I ride with a smaller size as my only layer.

It looks dorky but I have noticed that people do pay attention to it. It's outstandingly ridiculous. I tend to cover it or rip it off as soon as I get to my destination so as not to blind or deeply offend the fashion sensibilities of my co-workers.

Here's one in "Big Bird Yellow".
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Old 01-03-07, 09:19 PM   #8
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My father, who works as a surveyor now, gave me a safety vest which I wear sometimes. But my boyfriend wears it more often since it fits him better and also because most of his jackets, shirts and T-shirts are black, blue or charcoal. I generally wear yellow, orange and red on a bike anyway, so am in less of a need of hi-viz reflective stuff.
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Old 01-03-07, 09:50 PM   #9
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I always wear one of the bright red mesh vests, even in full daylight. To me, it is simply part of my safety outfit and is second nature when I put on my helmet. I figure, if I'm going to go play in traffic, I better be as visible as possible. Dorky? Of course. But my bike will soon be even dorkier as I am in the process of putting turn signals and a brake light on it as well.

As soon as I finish installing the lighting system on the bike, I'll see about getting a vest with reflective stripes to wear at night.
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Old 01-03-07, 10:02 PM   #10
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A catalog I got f rom a local hydroponics store listed plastic retroreflective sheets used to line grow rooms. Big sheets, big enough to cut out your own whole torso vest. I will look into just how retro-reflective it is and maybe make one if the DEA does not get me first.
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Old 01-03-07, 10:05 PM   #11
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"Only at night/in the rain/in heavy fog" describes my Winter commute. My red mesh vest has 3 horizontal yellow stripes plus I use ankle bands, other reflective tape, blinkies & a good headlight. I wear my vest year around but have left it at home on the hottest days.
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Old 01-03-07, 10:18 PM   #12
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I'll post pix when I make my new reflective gear. I got a new sewing machine, and I've found some good fabric and reflecty suppliers (thanx to help from fellow forum members.)
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Old 01-03-07, 10:52 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chephy
My father, who works as a surveyor now, gave me a safety vest which I wear sometimes. But my boyfriend wears it more often since it fits him better and also because most of his jackets, shirts and T-shirts are black, blue or charcoal. I generally wear yellow, orange and red on a bike anyway, so am in less of a need of hi-viz reflective stuff.
My wife and I wear a modified surveyor's vest. She took in the side seams and arm holes to make it more snug and added a wide white reflexite band at the waist. She also added an inner pocket big enough to store maps or gloves. We don't leave home without it.
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Old 01-04-07, 08:52 AM   #14
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I wear it when I am working on construction sites.

I've occasionally strapped one to the back of my pack.

I never wear them riding.
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Old 01-04-07, 08:58 AM   #15
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I usually wear mine. It's not mesh really but it's a thin, lightweight nylon. I can't wear it visibly when I'm wearing my backpack, so for the time being I have kept it off. I'm planning on stitching some really annoying bright material and reflective stuff onto my backpack soon.
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Old 01-04-07, 08:59 AM   #16
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Personally, I'd bike to other music than 'Men Without Hats'

S-s-s-s A-a-a-a F-f-f-f E-e-e-e T-t-t-t Y-y-y-y
Safe, dance!


Also, I have a vest, but can't bring myself to wearing it, instead I go a bit over the top on the blinkies.
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Old 01-04-07, 09:02 AM   #17
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Even though I voted for night use of the vest. I always remember this mantra never leave home with out protection!
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Old 01-04-07, 09:57 AM   #18
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Only for night riding. I highly recommend the Amphipod Xinglet. I bought it at EMS. Not as tacky as a Nathan, more comfortable, and way more visible! There's a version with a pocket, and if you really want a vest, they got that too.
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Old 01-04-07, 10:12 AM   #19
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Blaze Orange hunting vest?
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Old 01-04-07, 10:14 AM   #20
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Watch out the aliens are coming!
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Old 01-04-07, 10:18 AM   #21
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ET phone home?!
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Old 01-04-07, 10:21 AM   #22
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Nope, my wife on a 'bent, New Years Eve riding through the midnight passage.
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Old 01-04-07, 10:22 AM   #23
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Doesn't mean I cant call it an alien
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Old 01-04-07, 10:33 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flipped4bikes
Only for night riding. I highly recommend the Amphipod. . . .
OK. That's more like it. I can live with this one.
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Old 01-04-07, 11:18 AM   #25
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I wear an AlertShirt ANSI yellow/lime T-shirt. I have lots of reflective material on my bike, legs and messenger bag. A vest would not help much if at all.
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