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  1. #1
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    fast city commuting and near crash experiences

    anyone else out there put out big wattage in the city? how many times do you almost get whacked on a daily basis? i obey the road laws most of the time, and don't think i'm in the wrong too often, but i had a guy pass within inches of me on a notorious bridge, almost got clipped hard by someone turning right suddenly, and had to yell at a ped crossing in the middle of the road not looking.

  2. #2
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    What do you consider to be "big wattage?"
    Cyclists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lube but your chains!

  3. #3
    ouate de phoque dramiscram's Avatar
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    My headlamp is 20 watts I guess, not sure...
    Originally Posted by Leebo

    Headwind is like a hill without a soul. Just gear down and suffer.
    Quote Originally Posted by jrickards View Post
    Headwinds are hills dipped in evil!

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    Quote Originally Posted by caloso View Post
    What do you consider to be "big wattage?"
    where you find you're going faster than everyone else.

  5. #5
    LET'S ROLL 1nterceptor's Avatar
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    Most big city commuters just accept the fact that bad things can happen,
    anyway biking is much more fun than driving

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Jkf__aUQpE

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    7-speed doomsday prepper ThermionicScott's Avatar
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    I fail to see a connection between going fast and bad things happening unless you're out-riding your ability to pay attention.
    Quote Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
    There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
    RUSA #7498

  7. #7
    http://www.538.nl acidfast7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
    I fail to see a connection between going fast and bad things happening unless you're out-riding your ability to pay attention.
    I have a mental image of a person starting at the ground and sweating intensely in the drops while mumbling "big wattage" out loud to themselves and screaming at someone in a crosswalk 50m ahead in northeastern accent, while looking like this:

    original.jpg

    also, calling Amherst a city is a wee-bit-of-a stretch.
    Last edited by acidfast7; 03-12-13 at 03:49 AM.
    Movimento 5 Stelle (M5S)
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    Quote Originally Posted by acidfast7 View Post
    while looking like this:

    original.jpg
    Dude looks happy.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Stun's Avatar
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    My experience, if you break into school zone speed limit speeds (20-25mph) cars and peds start to have a really hard time judging how fast you are going. It's like they don't expect a bike to be going over 10 or 12mph so they assume that is the speed you are going just because you are on a bike.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Stun's Avatar
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    And yes, acidfast7, that guy does look like he is trying to crank out some serious wattage. If I were a pedestrian I would probably jump out of his way just to make sure there aren't any problems

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    http://www.538.nl acidfast7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stun View Post
    And yes, acidfast7, that guy does look like he is trying to crank out some serious wattage. If I were a pedestrian I would probably jump out of his way just to make sure there aren't any problems
    the way he's dressed you couldn't miss him from 100m away

    Movimento 5 Stelle (M5S)
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  12. #12
    ride for a change modernjess's Avatar
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    My wattage has never been measured but I did meet Charlie Watts one time.

    And no, I don't have near misses with traffic all the time every day.

  13. #13
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UMassAm View Post
    anyone else out there put out big wattage in the city? how many times do you almost get whacked on a daily basis? i obey the road laws most of the time, and don't think i'm in the wrong too often, but i had a guy pass within inches of me on a notorious bridge, almost got clipped hard by someone turning right suddenly, and had to yell at a ped crossing in the middle of the road not looking.
    I stopped getting almost whacked on a daily basis when I started looking up the road rather than down at my wattage display.
    Cyclists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lube but your chains!

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    http://www.538.nl acidfast7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by modernjess View Post
    but I did meet Charlie Watts one time.
    Movimento 5 Stelle (M5S)
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    Been Around Awhile I-Like-To-Bike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UMassAm View Post
    anyone else out there put out big wattage in the city? how many times do you almost get whacked on a daily basis? i obey the road laws most of the time, and don't think i'm in the wrong too often, but i had a guy pass within inches of me on a notorious bridge, almost got clipped hard by someone turning right suddenly, and had to yell at a ped crossing in the middle of the road not looking.
    If you think these near accidents were the result of your "big wattage" riding, why don't you turn it down a bit? Ya know, like a sensible cyclist who knows when he is not in dang race.

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    idc
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    I would say I'm faster than most fellow commuters but I will always prioritize my safety first. I'd say I'm almost getting whacked between 0.005 - 0.020 times/day.

    Pedestrians crossing while not looking is a given for some sections of my commute. I ride around safely while preserving my sanity, not too much point getting worked up about it. Same goes for other minor incidents.

  17. #17
    or tarckeemoon, depending marqueemoon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UMassAm View Post
    anyone else out there put out big wattage in the city? how many times do you almost get whacked on a daily basis? i obey the road laws most of the time, and don't think i'm in the wrong too often, but i had a guy pass within inches of me on a notorious bridge, almost got clipped hard by someone turning right suddenly, and had to yell at a ped crossing in the middle of the road not looking.
    Being "in the right" doesn't matter when it comes down to it.

    Drivers have a hard time judging the speed of cyclists. The faster you're going the worse the problem becomes.

    Riding defensively often means riding slower. You need to give yourself and others time to react.

    You may be lit up like a Christmas tree, but if a ped or driver has not made eye contact with you assume you are invisible.

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    Senior Member Stun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by acidfast7 View Post
    the way he's dressed you couldn't miss him from 100m away


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    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    A serious answer is that I have found that I often fare best when I am close to the prevailing speed of traffic, motor or human powered. There is no one-size-fits-all answer; sometimes 20mph is too fast, sometimes it's too slow, and other times it's just right. Keep your head up, pay attention to changing conditions, plan ahead, and give yourself an escape route if possible.
    Cyclists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lube but your chains!

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by caloso View Post
    A serious answer is that I have found that I often fare best when I am close to the prevailing speed of traffic
    For a fit, experienced, and fast cyclist, a bike lane can be less safe than taking the lane. And if you are riding in the lane its only polite to ride at the prevailing speed of traffic.

    Quote Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
    Ya know, like a sensible cyclist who knows when he is not in dang race.
    God forbid that a cyclist might actually dare to have fun on their bicycle!!!!1!!!!!! That would make us all look baaaad.

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    Quote Originally Posted by UMassAm View Post
    anyone else out there put out big wattage in the city? how many times do you almost get whacked on a daily basis? i obey the road laws most of the time, and don't think i'm in the wrong too often, but i had a guy pass within inches of me on a notorious bridge, almost got clipped hard by someone turning right suddenly, and had to yell at a ped crossing in the middle of the road not looking.
    UMAssAm, I hit ~40 mph on my daily commute but I can't even remember the last close call I've had. IMO, experience, fitness, and bike handling skills lessen your risk. If this is not your experience, I would like to suggest that you are doing it wrong.

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    Quote Originally Posted by spare_wheel View Post
    For a fit, experienced, and fast cyclist, a bike lane can be less safe than taking the lane. And if you are riding in the lane its only polite to ride at the prevailing speed of traffic.



    God forbid that a cyclist might actually dare to have fun on their bicycle!!!!1!!!!!! That would make us all look baaaad.
    i tried slowing it down today, even with pretty fried legs, my brain wouldnt let me sit behind someone cranking 70RPM at 70".

    this is all good advice, and my vigilance usually matches my speed, but there are times when people just can't judge how fast youre going, or i'm tapped after an effort and decision making lags or muscles are recovering. whoever said slow riding is defensive riding is completely right. for better or worse, i put myself somewhere between motorist and commuter, mostly just an aggresive cyclist (when commuting at least).

    i have a short, 2 mile commute, which allows me to ramp up for a short amount of time. life would be a lot different if i had a longer commute i imagine.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Spld cyclist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spare_wheel View Post
    For a fit, experienced, and fast cyclist, a bike lane can be less safe than taking the lane. And if you are riding in the lane its only polite to ride at the prevailing speed of traffic.
    When I'm on my way home through downtown in the evening, it feels safest when traffic slows down at least to the low 20s. That way, I can just ride in the middle of the lane and not feel like cars are trying to squeeze me over into the door zone. If I can keep within 2 or 3 car lengths of the car ahead, the driver behind me usually doesn't seem to get impatient (i.e., they don't honk, tailgate, or cross over the double yellow to pass me). It feels pretty good to move at the 20 mph or so necessary to do this (that's about my limit on the flat, and I can't keep it up for very long, but feels good while it lasts).

    In general, I think it's ok to go fast in urban environments if you keep within the limits of your skill and what traffic conditions allow you. It's also possible to use it as interval training. Go fast, but slow or stop whenever needed to be safe. That just becomes an opportunity to accelerate again....

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spld cyclist View Post
    If I can keep within 2 or 3 car lengths of the car ahead, the driver behind me usually doesn't seem to get impatient (i.e., they don't honk, tailgate, or cross over the double yellow to pass me).
    I almost never get agro while taking the lane because I ride at the prevailing speed.

    It feels pretty good to move at the 20 mph or so
    Word.

    It's also possible to use it as interval training. Go fast, but slow or stop whenever needed to be safe.
    I tend to obey traffic signals simply because I enjoy the track stand and sprint to cruising speed.

  25. #25
    2 Fat 2 Furious contango's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by acidfast7 View Post
    the way he's dressed you couldn't miss him from 100m away

    You've obviously never seen the way London taxis drive
    "For a list of ways technology has failed to improve quality of life, press three"

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