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  1. #1
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    BBC reports: folding bike owners selfish and inconsiderate

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/7372956.stm

    Shame on you Bromptonauts for taking up other peoples' space with your giant bikes.

    Get a Carryme!
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    Last edited by makeinu; 06-15-08 at 02:11 PM.

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    It is a matter of time and we will see the same thing here on the trains and buses.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dynocoaster View Post
    It is a matter of time and we will see the same thing here on the trains and buses.
    That's why I would never sell my Carryme even if I found myself not using it. In the long run I think ultrasmall folders are the only viable solution for multimodal urban travel.

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    Senior Member snafu21's Avatar
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    I used to catch that train daily about twenty years ago. Got on it further up the line at Tunbridge Wells, by the time it got to Sevenoaks (expensive dormitory 'village' about an hour outside London) people were packed in it like sardines. There wasn't room for a furled umbrella in it then, who knows what it's like now.

    There were then, a lot of people on the train who I'd describe as complete ****s, always complaining, failing to move down the train away from the doors and so on. Many of them expected to sit in the same seat every day. If there was somebody else sitting in it all hell broke lose. Unbelievable. Most days it was standing room only, even then people insisted on trying to fully open newspapers and read them with outstretched arms. No room for a Carryme...

    It was a miserable journey. I can just imagine the same intolerant people ranting about bikes taking up space...
    Last edited by snafu21; 06-15-08 at 02:34 PM.
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    Banned. folder fanatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dynocoaster View Post
    It is a matter of time and we will see the same thing here on the trains and buses.
    Agree. I saw that trend developing on Bike day about a month ago. The bus was even more crowded than the last time I took it (a year earlier). The freeways are just as jammed as before.
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  6. #6
    Raleigh20 PugFixie, Merc LittlePixel's Avatar
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    All they have to do is do a bit of thinking about current trends and maybe someone will go "Hey - maybe we should have a 'guard's van' like in the old days where people can leave their bikes and bulky luggage"

    It defies me how problems solved many moons ago get forgotten in the midst of supposed 'progress' and
    no-one can work out a solution for simple logistical problems. Instead it get's left it to the passengers to become equally enraged or stigmatised (depending on the side of the fence) due to the lack of forethought from the transport providers.

    I blame Dr Beeching and Maggie Thatch. Ugh.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by snafu21 View Post
    I used to catch that train daily about twenty years ago. Got on it further up the line at Tunbridge Wells, by the time it got to Sevenoaks (expensive dormitory 'village' about an hour outside London) people were packed in it like sardines. There wasn't room for a furled umbrella in it then, who knows what it's like now.

    There were then, a lot of people on the train who I'd describe as complete ****s, always complaining, failing to move down the train away from the doors and so on. Many of them expected to sit in the same seat every day. If there was somebody else sitting in it all hell broke lose. Unbelievable. Most days it was standing room only, even then people insisted on trying to fully open newspapers and read them with outstretched arms. No room for a Carryme...

    It was a miserable journey. I can just imagine the same intolerant people ranting about bikes taking up space...
    Snafu21 the voice of common sense! It's selfish commuters and increasingly poor rolling stock. I commute from West Drayton to London Paddington. Thames Trains used to operate a stopping service from Slough to Paddingtona & separate trains from Oxford & Reading. We never had overcrowding. Then an OK service was sacked off the line to be replaced by a bunch of cowboys called First Great Western. They cancelled the Slough-Paddington service and used relatively short carriage trains now run stopping services from Reading & Oxford.

    As Snafu says people crowd out the doorwells and are reluctant to move down or take up 2 seats with bags unless asked to shift. Some passengers are stupid enough to take it out on decent cyclists but not on train operators. People in the UK always take it out on the wrong people or fail to complain smartly to the right people.

    I must say my 20" folder represented an issue on crowded trains and it was stressful at crowded times. No-one should complain about my Brompton. When that becomes a problem, given it's no larger than a small suitacase folded, then it's clear the train oeprators are at fault. In fairness most passengers find the Brompton fascinating and appreciate it has a small footprint.

    My Brompton has made peak travel so much less stressful and I haven't had grief or a confrontation since. I'm sure some idiot will comment one day but I'll ignore such idiocy. I love gadgets (typical boy at heart!) but the best gadget I've ever owned is my Brompton of 2 months!

  8. #8
    Professional Fuss-Budget Bacciagalupe's Avatar
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    Oddly enough, for those who bothered to actually read the article , they point out that the real issue is that the trains are too congested and they recently reduced storage space as well.

    I have my doubts a Carryme would make anyone all that much happier. It is small and very vertical, but lo and behold, it takes up no more space than a Brompton. It's the A-Bike that really takes the crown here.

    Brompton = 9.8" x 21" x 22" (4,527 cu in)
    Carryme = 35” x 12” x 10.75” (4,515 cu in)
    A-Bike = 26” x 12” x 6” (1,872 cu in)

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by LittlePixel View Post
    All they have to do is do a bit of thinking about current trends and maybe someone will go "Hey - maybe we should have a 'guard's van' like in the old days where people can leave their bikes and bulky luggage"

    It defies me how problems solved many moons ago get forgotten in the midst of supposed 'progress' and
    no-one can work out a solution for simple logistical problems. Instead it get's left it to the passengers to become equally enraged or stigmatised (depending on the side of the fence) due to the lack of forethought from the transport providers.

    I blame Dr Beeching and Maggie Thatch. Ugh.
    The Caltrain commuter rail in the San Francisco Bay Area has dedicated "guard vans" like this and I believe there are quite a few posters around here who ride folding bikes specifically because when the Caltrain luggage cars fill up (as it often does) they don't want to be left behind.

    How long will it be before the owners of large folding bikes become so numerous on the Caltrain that they start to inconvenience the other passengers, thus, bringing us back to square one?

    Anything that takes up more space than a normal variance in passenger body size is fundamentally unfair to passengers who travel by foot...unless, of course, passengers without onerously large packages get priority, in which case the problem will solve itself as the previously inconsiderate folding bike owners discover the new rules make their selfishness concordant with common courtesy and buy smaller folding bikes.

  10. #10
    Part-time epistemologist invisiblehand's Avatar
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    This sounds like a long list of other problems in congested cities. Sad thing is that a little courtesy and common sense would go a long way to making things easier for everyone.

    Nice article Makeinu.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
    Oddly enough, for those who bothered to actually read the article , they point out that the real issue is that the trains are too congested and they recently reduced storage space as well.

    I have my doubts a Carryme would make anyone all that much happier. It is small and very vertical, but lo and behold, it takes up no more space than a Brompton. It's the A-Bike that really takes the crown here.

    Brompton = 9.8" x 21" x 22" (4,527 cu in)
    Carryme = 35” x 12” x 10.75” (4,515 cu in)
    A-Bike = 26” x 12” x 6” (1,872 cu in)
    I very sincerely hope that the other passengers are not vying for the 35" from your unmentionable down to the heel of your foot and there's not much you can do about the length from the heels of your feet to the tips of your big toes.

    So, when standing, the 35" by 11" rectangle enclosing your crotch and the tip of your toes is gratis and since it's almost always necessary to stand in front of your seat before sitting, you automatically also get the same amount of free space when sitting. Therefore, it is the width of the box defined by the space between your feet that the other passengers would like to negotiate.

    Unless you have considerably large feet this space is 21" for the Brompton, 12" for the Carryme, and 12" for the A-bike.

    Unlike shipping Fedex, the volume of the rectangular box of smallest volume enclosing the bike is not the relevant measure of size. Just like airlines define their own specific metric of size as the sum of linear dimensions, here the anatomy of the human body coupled with common decency defines the relevant measure of size to be the width of the rectangular box of smallest width whose length and height are each no greater than the person's shoe size and inseam plus unmentionable region, respectively. Now I guess if you'd like to offer the stranger sitting next to you your 35" of private real estate in exchange for the space reserved for his loafers so you can fit your Brompton that is your prerogative, but you better be careful because on this side of the pond that kind of bargaining is usually illegal outside of Nevada.

    Obviously the issue is congestion. Congestion is the reason why many of these folks turned to folding bikes to begin with. The point is that these large folding bikes that people are using are now themselves beginning to exacerbate the congestion problem.
    Last edited by makeinu; 06-15-08 at 06:03 PM.

  12. #12
    Professional Fuss-Budget Bacciagalupe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by makeinu View Post
    I very sincerely hope that the other passengers are not vying for the 35" from the base of your unmentionable down to the heel of your foot....
    Obviously, you've never been on the 6 train during rush hour.




    Separately, commuter trains typically have overhead storage, so in that scenario a cubic inch is a cubic inch.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
    Oddly enough, for those who bothered to actually read the article , they point out that the real issue is that the trains are too congested and they recently reduced storage space as well.

    I have my doubts a Carryme would make anyone all that much happier. It is small and very vertical, but lo and behold, it takes up no more space than a Brompton. It's the A-Bike that really takes the crown here.

    Brompton = 9.8" x 21" x 22" (4,527 cu in)
    Carryme = 35 x 12 x 10.75 (4,515 cu in)
    A-Bike = 26 x 12 x 6 (1,872 cu in)
    Brompton wins hands down on the ratio of dimension to a good quality ride. I have no issues on crowded trains with a B.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
    Obviously, you've never been on the 6 train during rush hour.

    I don't see anyone violating the aforementioned private area. In my experience even on the NYC subway it's pretty taboo. People definitely get up close and personal breathing in your face, pushing you, and perhaps even touching your butt, but I can't say I've ever had anyone express a complaint over the fact that I wouldn't let them literally stand on my feet and grab my crotch.

    Maybe it's just me being overly assertive, but I feel pretty confident that any stranger touching my crotch knows he's taken more than his fair share of real estate. So when I put my bike there the only fault I'm willing to admit is perhaps spreading my knees an extra 12".

    Here's an idea, if I put the Carryme on my feet while standing then I got a bonifide crotch blocker. No spreading of the knees necessary.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
    Separately, commuter trains typically have overhead storage, so in that scenario a cubic inch is a cubic inch.
    I wouldn't say so, in my experience the overhead storage racks on commuter trains are much longer than they are wide and, thus, typically are underutilized lengthwise. Besides (and I've mentioned this before), how often can you actually access the overhead rack on an ubercrowded commuter train? Being overhead, my sentiment is generally that overhead racks are pretty useless. The only time I ever see people put stuff up their is if they're one of the first to board (a decision they appear to later regret when they have to get it down without dropping it on someone elses head). If you're one of the first people to board and one of the last to exit then you can access it, but I've never been in that sort of situation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mulleady View Post
    Brompton wins hands down on the ratio of dimension to a good quality ride. I have no issues on crowded trains with a B.
    What dimension though? Because I bet if you wrapped both the Brompton and the Carryme in watertight plastic and submerged them in water the Carryme would probably displace less than 2 cu in of water while the Brompton would probably displace close to 4.5 cu in; Reason being that the 10.5" width of the Carryme comes almost entirely from just the pedals and, moreover, the cross section is overall much more triangular than rectangular whereas the Brompton is pretty much a rectangle.

    Now I have no idea why anyone would be interested in this volume, but neither do I know why anyone would be interested in the volume of the rectangular box of smallest volume enclosing the bike (as computed above in the LxWxH calculations of Bacciagalupe) apart from sending the bike somewhere via Fedex.

    The dimensional quantities I am interested are:
    -The area of the 2D projection of smallest area (ie the footprint)
    -The volume of the portion of the rectangular box which minimally exceeds the standard crotch/foot region.
    -The sum of linear dimensions exceeding airline carryon specification.

    But I'm not interested in the volume of the the rectangular box of smallest volume enclosing the bike because there really isn't any aspect of my life which restricts that particular quantity.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by makeinu View Post
    What dimension though? Because I bet if you wrapped both the Brompton and the Carryme in watertight plastic and submerged them in water the Carryme would probably displace less than 2 cu in of water while the Brompton would probably displace close to 4.5 cu in; Reason being that the 10.5" width of the Carryme comes almost entirely from just the pedals and, moreover, the cross section is overall much more triangular than rectangular whereas the Brompton is pretty much a rectangle.

    Now I have no idea why anyone would be interested in this volume, but neither do I know why anyone would be interested in the volume of the rectangular box of smallest volume enclosing the bike (as computed above in the LxWxH calculations of Bacciagalupe) apart from sending the bike somewhere via Fedex.

    The dimensional quantities I am interested are:
    -The area of the 2D projection of smallest area (ie the footprint)
    -The volume of the portion of the rectangular box which minimally exceeds the standard crotch/foot region.
    -The sum of linear dimensions exceeding airline carryon specification.

    But I'm not interested in the volume of the the rectangular box of smallest volume enclosing the bike because there really isn't any aspect of my life which restricts that particular quantity.
    Too pedantic here I'm afraid.The Brompton is more than compact enough for commute and go whatever physics we debate and it sports a very good ride once unfolded on urban roads.

  17. #17
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by LittlePixel View Post
    All they have to do is do a bit of thinking about current trends and maybe someone will go "Hey - maybe we should have a 'guard's van' like in the old days where people can leave their bikes and bulky luggage"

    It defies me how problems solved many moons ago get forgotten in the midst of supposed 'progress' and
    no-one can work out a solution for simple logistical problems. Instead it get's left it to the passengers to become equally enraged or stigmatised (depending on the side of the fence) due to the lack of forethought from the transport providers.

    I blame Dr Beeching and Maggie Thatch. Ugh.
    No, they can't put on a gaurds van that might make sense.It might cost a few pounds too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
    Oddly enough, for those who bothered to actually read the article , they point out that the real issue is that the trains are too congested and they recently reduced storage space as well.

    I have my doubts a Carryme would make anyone all that much happier. It is small and very vertical, but lo and behold, it takes up no more space than a Brompton. It's the A-Bike that really takes the crown here.

    Brompton = 9.8" x 21" x 22" (4,527 cu in)
    Carryme = 35 x 12 x 10.75 (4,515 cu in)
    A-Bike = 26 x 12 x 6 (1,872 cu in)
    What makes the CarryMe more desirable in crowded trains is the fact you can use the overhead luggage rack. In the article, passengers said the rack was useless because it was too small to put a 16 or 20' inch folder. However, the Carryme would fit and I've noticed it is the only folder that would fit in overhead racks in both trains, airlines and buses. In fact, it will fit between your legs while sitting in a cramp, something you can't do with a Brompton.

    Of course, the A-Bike can do the same, but do you really want to ride one?

  20. #20
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    Difficult to see how they could have a guards van on a train when they dont even have guards anymore !

    Seemingly the prime duty of all railway staff, except the diver (at the moment) is to harass passengers and fine them for ticket infringements.

  21. #21
    The Legitimiser Sammyboy's Avatar
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    Here's what I don't understand. You have a commuter-hours train that's horribly overcrowded, and probably dangerous. Everyone who rides it hates it, and many others find other means of travel, because it's too unpleasant to contemplate. Why not add a couple more carriages, or another train 15 mins later? If you do this, it gets safer, more pleasant, less warlike, and lo and behold, those who have refused to use the train in the past start to consider it. If trains need to be this crowded to be profitable, there's something wrong with the model, especially at peak-hours prices.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Diode100 View Post
    ......
    Seemingly the prime duty of all railway staff, except the diver (at the moment) is to harass passengers and fine them for ticket infringements.
    I boarded a Virgin train at Euston a couple of weeks ago, around 3 pm., having a "Saver return" I'd bought earlier that day.

    Having actually found a seat, the automated announcement in the carriage issued dire warnings about "full fare" payment penalties for "Saver return" ticket holders, so I alighted back onto the platform, heading for the ticket office. I passed 2 Virgin employees & asked when the next valid train would be for this ticket. They thought about this, produced some tatty paperwork & surmised after 7 pm.

    At the ticket office they said "That train is fine with your ticket". By now of course it had departed, so I boarded another.

    No announcement on this train, until we just started to move, so too late to get off :-)

    Anyway the ticket lady clipped my ticket with ne'er a blink. So, if I was confused, living in this Country, it must be tough for a foreign visitor to understand the complex regulations on train travel.

    Last week I bought another saver ticket, slightly cheaper, but for "London Midland" trains only, & put on a (non-folding) bike at Euston, without any problems.

  23. #23
    Senior Member snafu21's Avatar
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    Did you know that the energy it takes to make one Brompton could feed the entire population of New York on turnips for over a week?

    I think we should be glad we don't live in Sevenoaks.


    "The Voice Of Reason"
    - every mile of road has two miles of ditch -

  24. #24
    The Legitimiser Sammyboy's Avatar
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    I'm definitely selfish and inconsiderate; I'll sometimes have a sandwich on the train, and not offer any to anyone else.

  25. #25
    Senior Member snafu21's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sammyboy View Post
    I'm definitely selfish and inconsiderate; I'll sometimes have a sandwich on the train, and not offer any to anyone else.

    Egads!! When the end of the world comes nobody on the 17:20 from London Bridge will offer you a nibble of their turnip..
    - every mile of road has two miles of ditch -

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