Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

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.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 05-14-08, 01:23 PM   #1
deez
peaced out
Thread Starter
 
deez's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Bikes:
Posts: 669
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
How to approach a Stop Light

Quick Question.

You approach a red light where there's 3 Cars already stopped do you

1. Pull past the 3 cars all the way up to the Stop line so you are even with the first car.
2. pull up behind the last car in line just as you would on a motorcycle or in a car.


I always do #1 but I often wonder if I'm correct to do so... after all, technically I should abide by all the same rules of the road as anyone else on it. right?
deez is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:27 PM   #2
katmu
Senior Member
 
katmu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Minnesota
Bikes: 1985 Trek 620 and 2006 Breezer Villager
Posts: 117
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I do #2, but like you I'm not really sure if that's right or not.
katmu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:30 PM   #3
ThreLittleBirds
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Bikes:
Posts: 111
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
2 is correct

if you pull even you are lane sharing which is not only illegal it is very dangerous.

what do you do after the light goes green? do you continue to ride next to the front car or do you allow it to pass? I just can not see any advantage to pulling even with the front car, all you are doing is making the road dangerous for everyone and forfeiting your lane position
ThreLittleBirds is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:30 PM   #4
jpdesjar
Guest
 
Bikes:
Posts: n/a
Mentioned: Post(s)
Tagged: Thread(s)
Quoted: Post(s)
I just posted something like this in relation to an article about bike commuting, I get to the front of the line because I am on a bike and I can. I have been doing this for a while. So I get to the front along side the car that is first.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:32 PM   #5
Mr York
Senior Member
 
Mr York's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Bikes:
Posts: 197
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I started out doing #1, but I get better reactions and feel safer doing #2.
Mr York is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:35 PM   #6
JustBrowsing
Seņor Miembro
 
JustBrowsing's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: DC
Bikes:
Posts: 603
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Depends on how wide the lane is. If there's enough room for there to be a proper bike lane (even if there isn't one), I'll slowly ride up to the light. Or if there's no room to the side, like what happened at one light this morning, I'll take my place in line.
JustBrowsing is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:35 PM   #7
jpdesjar
Guest
 
Bikes:
Posts: n/a
Mentioned: Post(s)
Tagged: Thread(s)
Quoted: Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr York View Post
I started out doing #1, but I get better reactions and feel safer doing #2.
Good to know, I may give this a shot today but there are certain lights where I can get a headtstart on the cars behind me. I can see getting better reactions with using approach 2.
I guess I don't really gain much by being one car ahead. Makes sense
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:35 PM   #8
genec
genec
 
genec's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: West Coast
Bikes: custom built, sannino, beachbike, giant trance x2
Posts: 24,632
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 159 Post(s)
I tend to do #2, unless the traffic is backed up... then I figure why add more congestion to the mess, and I filter forward and go with a motorist. (thereby causing no more delay)
genec is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:37 PM   #9
noisebeam
Al
 
noisebeam's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: AZ
Bikes: Cannondale SuperSix, Lemond Poprad. Retired: Jamis Sputnik, Centurion LeMans Fixed, Diamond Back ascent ex
Posts: 14,109
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 27 Post(s)
#2 unless I am certain I will end up waiting an extra light cycle in which case I filter forward only enough to avoid that.

It seems pointless to get passed again and I want the drivers behind me to be most aware of me - and staying in back of line assures that vs. being up front off to the side with blocked sight lines.

Al
noisebeam is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:38 PM   #10
axelfox
Senior Member
 
axelfox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 487
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
In a recent LA Times article about motorcycles, #1 is referred to as "Lane Splitting" which, as far I know, is legal in CA.
axelfox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:40 PM   #11
JeffS
not a role model
 
JeffS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Portland, OR
Bikes:
Posts: 4,659
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
If there's only 3 cars, I wait in line. There's nothing to be gained by passing 3 cars that will just pass me back.

If I were turning right I'd pass them.

Now, if there's 20 cars, and I know only 15 will make it through the light, I'm jumping to the front -- maybe not the very front, but close to it. Before my office moved, there was one stoplight that would have required me to sit through three light cycles every single day if I'd waited in line.
JeffS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:40 PM   #12
jpdesjar
Guest
 
Bikes:
Posts: n/a
Mentioned: Post(s)
Tagged: Thread(s)
Quoted: Post(s)
Dang I have been doing approach one this whole time, people in cars must be pissed at me but I did think I was using good judgment. There is one light where many cars get backed up so I just say alright I need to get to the front because I can.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:44 PM   #13
harleyfrog
An Army of Fred
 
harleyfrog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Lost South of Nowhere East of Edan On the Waterfront Far from the Madding Crowd (Biloxi, MS)
Bikes: 1992 Specialized Crossroads Trail
Posts: 1,003
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
#2 here. I feel safer, it lets other drivers know that I consider myself a vehicle and follow the rules of the road, and I find that I can get as quick, if not quicker start, than most cars when stopped at a light, so they can't use the excuse that I'm holding up traffic.
harleyfrog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:47 PM   #14
deez
peaced out
Thread Starter
 
deez's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Bikes:
Posts: 669
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
You are correct, however California is the ONLY state lane splitting is legal in.source


this made a lot of sense to me

Quote:
Originally Posted by noisebeam
It seems pointless to get passed again and I want the drivers behind me to be most aware of me - and staying in back of line assures that vs. being up front off to the side with blocked sight lines.
I think i'll switch it up on the ride home and go for what seems to be the more accepted #2. There's one light though where I cross a busy highway where ALL cyclists regardless pull up past all the cars to the line. I think at that particular light it just makes it easier to hurry up and get across the highway and get in the lane than waiting.
deez is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:49 PM   #15
noisebeam
Al
 
noisebeam's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: AZ
Bikes: Cannondale SuperSix, Lemond Poprad. Retired: Jamis Sputnik, Centurion LeMans Fixed, Diamond Back ascent ex
Posts: 14,109
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 27 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by jpdesjar View Post
Dang I have been doing approach one this whole time, people in cars must be pissed at me but I did think I was using good judgment. There is one light where many cars get backed up so I just say alright I need to get to the front because I can.
I recommend trying approach #2 for a while. I'll betstimate that you will only go back to #1 for cases where you would otherwise end up waiting an extra light cycle or for where you are going to turn right and there is room to safely filter.

This topic by the way is an oft debated one. Not everyone agrees that #2 (with stated exceptions) is preferred, but those are mostly folks who haven't given #2 an honest trial period.

Al
noisebeam is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:49 PM   #16
deez
peaced out
Thread Starter
 
deez's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Bikes:
Posts: 669
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by harleyfrog View Post
#2 here. I feel safer, it lets other drivers know that I consider myself a vehicle and follow the rules of the road,

This is the initial reason I questioned the wisdom of what I was doing. I consider myself a vehicle and I follow the rules of the road. And somewhere along the line I expect to be treated by others as such although i realize thats a whimsical idea at best
deez is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:51 PM   #17
jpdesjar
Guest
 
Bikes:
Posts: n/a
Mentioned: Post(s)
Tagged: Thread(s)
Quoted: Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by noisebeam View Post
I recommend trying approach #2 for a while. I'll betstimate that you will only go back to #1 for cases where you would otherwise end up waiting an extra light cycle or for where you are going to turn right and there is room to safely filter.

This topic by the way is an oft debated one. Not everyone agrees that #2 (with stated exceptions) is preferred, but those are mostly folks who haven't given #2 an honest trial period.

Al
Thanks, I honestly thought nothing of it until this post. The better I can get along with motorists the better. One of the intersections is a tough one because I cross railroad tracks and then the lane splits into three 2 going straight and one going right so I have to make a quick move to get in my lane.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:54 PM   #18
noisebeam
Al
 
noisebeam's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: AZ
Bikes: Cannondale SuperSix, Lemond Poprad. Retired: Jamis Sputnik, Centurion LeMans Fixed, Diamond Back ascent ex
Posts: 14,109
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 27 Post(s)
Another advantage of #2 is when the vehicles in front of you get going, they will get you going quicker due to their draft.

Al
noisebeam is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:54 PM   #19
gmule
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Conifer CO
Bikes:
Posts: 411
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Where I live and commute I have bicycle lanes next to the arterial roads. On those roads that I am in the bike lane I will stop even with the car in the front. On regular surface roads without the bike lane I will take my place in line behind the stopped cars.
gmule is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:56 PM   #20
noisebeam
Al
 
noisebeam's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: AZ
Bikes: Cannondale SuperSix, Lemond Poprad. Retired: Jamis Sputnik, Centurion LeMans Fixed, Diamond Back ascent ex
Posts: 14,109
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 27 Post(s)
Even when there is a BL I line up with other vehicles unless I am making a right turn.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jvA6jQyPP98

Last edited by noisebeam; 05-14-08 at 02:02 PM.
noisebeam is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:56 PM   #21
HardyWeinberg
GATC
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: south Puget Sound
Bikes:
Posts: 7,480
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 37 Post(s)
I will go all the way up on the right if they all have left turn signals on (and there's room). Then I hope they meant it.
HardyWeinberg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 01:59 PM   #22
deez
peaced out
Thread Starter
 
deez's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Bikes:
Posts: 669
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by HardyWeinberg View Post
I will go all the way up on the right if they all have left turn signals on (and there's room). Then I hope they meant it.

oh lawwd that be my BIGGEST pet peeve right there.
deez is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 02:02 PM   #23
Flimflam
Raving looney
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Toronto, ON, Canada
Bikes: 70s Leader Precision w/Shimano 600 (road), IRO Rob Roy (Fixed)
Posts: 2,482
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Depends on the light. If I know the light to be short, I'll filter through and make sure I get through on the next cycle (there's a light in my current commute that lasts only 2-3 cars regardless of conditions - I'd filter to this one).

To be fair I guess I filter most/pretty much all of the time - I find it safer for me to get across intersections first/before the cars get going, if I'm not close enough to get right to the front, I'll find a gap and duck to the curbside (I usually filter by splitting lanes, I find it much safer than curb squeezing) to allow traffic to flow properly.
Flimflam is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 02:02 PM   #24
jpdesjar
Guest
 
Bikes:
Posts: n/a
Mentioned: Post(s)
Tagged: Thread(s)
Quoted: Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by deez View Post
oh lawwd that be my BIGGEST pet peeve right there.
My thing is that I know on certain lights I can get to the front and I know the timing of the lights well too so that I can get a headtstart, am I wrong here? The light I am doing this on leads right into another light with another set of railroad tracks to cross, it's my least favorite part of my commute.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 02:03 PM   #25
m00n
Senior Member
 
m00n's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 134
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
For me it depends on the situation and the type of road I'm on. If there is plenty of shoulder room, I go with #1 and then let everyone pass.
m00n is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:27 PM.