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Old 08-15-09, 10:13 AM   #1
Timber_8
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Better respect if your in Cycle Gear

Do you think you get more Respect on your bike if your in riding gear. I kinda feel that when I see a rider with Helmet, shorts, goggles on a bike with lights that they are a more in touch rider with there environment. Riders with no helmet, long pants, no lighting I tend to think of as a novice rider. I know that it is not the case but I do get a good level of respect from automotive traffic and I think it is because I look like a rider.
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Old 08-15-09, 03:48 PM   #2
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Definitely. When I started (semi)-serious riding a few years ago I rode with jeans, NO helmet, no lights even at night on the 2 lane highway, no pump or tools, etc. Since I started acting like I know what I'm doing it seems like I get a lot more respect from people. Strangers are much more likely to talk to me, also. Cars seem to show more respect. When you don't act like you know what you're doing I think people see you as just some doofus who doesn't have a car.
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Old 08-15-09, 04:04 PM   #3
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Only in the U.S.A.
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Old 08-15-09, 04:17 PM   #4
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Only in the U.S.A.
Very true !
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Old 08-15-09, 04:24 PM   #5
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Yeah, there's a difference.

But it's not too surprising, really. In many walks of life it helps a lot to "look the part".

That "space alien" cartoon is pretty good, by the way......
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Old 08-15-09, 04:30 PM   #6
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I noticed the same thing. When I ride in full kit, the roadies are generally nicer.

But when I ride in normal clothes (sans helmet), drivers give me more room (usually) and don't scowl at me as much. They see a guy who is too poor to own a car, instead of a superhero/space alien trying to take over the roadways.
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Old 08-15-09, 04:36 PM   #7
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Yeah, there's a difference.

But it's not too surprising, really. In many walks of life it helps a lot to "look the part".

That "space alien" cartoon is pretty good, by the way......
I Just could not resist it!

If I ride my top of the line Litespeed with riding clothes on I get treated as If I know everything there is to know about bikes. If I ride my $5 1960's Schwinn Continental with street clothes I get treated as If I know nothing about bikes. If I ride my track bike I get treated as if I think the only way to ride is fixed gear. If I take the dog and the trike, I am treated as a very nice friendly and caring person, because I have a pet, but a beginer cyclist. etc. etc. etc. mountain bikes, beater bikes etc.
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Old 08-15-09, 05:12 PM   #8
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"The people still argue over just why the space alien, after coming to their town, merely bought a bicycle tire repair kit and walked away."

Does that "tweak" the joke a bit?
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Old 08-16-09, 04:30 AM   #9
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I noticed the same thing. When I ride in full kit, the roadies are generally nicer.

But when I ride in normal clothes (sans helmet), drivers give me more room (usually) and don't scowl at me as much. They see a guy who is too poor to own a car, instead of a superhero/space alien trying to take over the roadways.
I have never had anything but good experiences with other bike riders regardless of what they were. The roads I run on are very bicycle populated. It is only on the internet that I find that people drop there humanity filters. In the real world I don't believe I have ever encountered a serious rider without some form of acknowledgment. I do however alway do the handlebar wave & I do dress as a rider but my bike is clearly in commuter mode
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Old 08-16-09, 08:55 AM   #10
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Where I live people on bikes are of two different breeds. The road bike riders cruise on the bike path in full cycle gear where the commuters are on the streets and sometimes bike path wearing street clothing. I ride both depending on where I am going and I feel as though I am never treated any differently whether I am in my riding clothes or not. I ride alone so that in itself gets me a lot of attention around here.
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Old 08-16-09, 09:49 PM   #11
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I don't think that full cycling kit gets you treated with more respect, but I find that having appropriate lighting does (something that an appalling large number of people in full biking kit lack, IME).

Biking home at dusk with a friend a few days ago, in street clothes and no helmet, but with high quality rear lights and headlights, a car pulled up next to us and the passenger rolled down the window and thanked us for "biking responsibly."
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Old 08-17-09, 02:26 PM   #12
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I have never had anything but good experiences with other bike riders regardless of what they were. The roads I run on are very bicycle populated. It is only on the internet that I find that people drop there humanity filters. In the real world I don't believe I have ever encountered a serious rider without some form of acknowledgment. I do however alway do the handlebar wave & I do dress as a rider but my bike is clearly in commuter mode
I've not had terrible experiences with other bike riders, but I do get more "Hellos!" and "Good Mornings!" when I'm on my road bike w/ lycra spandex.

When I commute to school/work on my mountain bike in my baggy shorts and T-shirt, the roadies usually do their best to ignore me -- most won't even give an "on your left" when passing me on the MUP at twice my speed.

It doesn't really bother me -- it's getting the drivers to acknowledge my presence on the road that is important.
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Old 08-18-09, 12:47 PM   #13
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you know what they say ...:

"dress for success"
"you only get once chance to make a first impression"
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Old 08-18-09, 12:52 PM   #14
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I think the only "real" riding gear I wear is my helmet and sometimes riding gloves. I haven't had anyone look askew at my attire and always get a nod and/or a smile even when passing those in 100% riding wear.
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Old 08-18-09, 01:11 PM   #15
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you know what they say ...:

"dress for success"
"you only get once chance to make a first impression"
Depends who it is that you're trying to impress.

I wear mountain bike shorts (the baggy kind) and loose synthetic shirts and I get lots of other riders (both wearing cycling clothing or not) giving me a friendly nod as I pass by. A few of the hard core roadies tend to look the other way, but then I'm not trying to impress them and they're certainly not impressing me. Actually, I'm not out to impress anyone so it doesn't really matter

I ride a bike -- and I wear comfortable clothing when I do.
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Old 08-18-09, 01:20 PM   #16
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I think MTB gear is awesome! there are some really nice oranges being used
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Old 08-18-09, 01:37 PM   #17
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Ugh. No orange (or any obnoxious fluorescent colours either). I'm into solid colours. Black mostly.
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Old 08-18-09, 01:55 PM   #18
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no no - dark orange, like a natural earth tone. I found some other colors but didn't find the rust I was thinking of but this first link to shorts - the model has a shirt that's close to what I'm thinking of:
http://www.rei.com/product/778660
http://www.nashbar.com/bikes/Product...3_10000_201463
http://www.nashbar.com/bikes/Product...3_10000_201463
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Old 08-19-09, 01:36 PM   #19
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The less you look like a "normal person" and the more like a racer wannabe, the worse drivers will treat you:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/somerset/5334208.stm
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Old 08-19-09, 01:46 PM   #20
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I concur with this analysis. I got the most courtesy space while work commuting by bike from passing cagers when I had a bike flag.

I was wearing a helmet, of course. So the "effect" isn't necessarily relegated to only helmet wearing.
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Old 08-19-09, 02:00 PM   #21
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I don't really care about "respect" on the road. I let my riding do the talking. If I drop a roadie at 25mph and he takes offense to me passing him with a flat bar bike, well that's his problem.

BTW, I got dropped today by a guy about 50 years old, overweight, no shirt, baggy shorts, sandles, and big panniers on the back of his 40 pound bike with his front fender nearly scraping his tire. I wasn't going slow, either. He definitely earned my respect.
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