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  1. #1
    In the right lane gerv's Avatar
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    Things that make carfree cycling so easy...

    I'm trying to think of component setups/gadgets that make or would make transportational cycling convenient. I'm wondering this because every time I go to the store I follow this routine:
    - bike in the rack
    - drop kickstand
    - unlock cable lock, wrap around front tire and inside the frame
    - remove mirror from glasses
    - attach helmet to the bike
    - disengage pannier(s)
    - remove blinkies
    (Seems like a lot to do and in winter there are several other things... like removing balaclava...)

    Recently, I installed a dynamo hub wheel and now never have to futz with batteries, lights on and off the bike every time I go to the store... just hop on and go.

    A great feature would be a way to quickly lock up the bike. I guess locking up doesn't take that long, but it would be so nice just to roll into the bike stand, turn a key and it's done.

    What else?

  2. #2
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    Secure Bike lockers.

  3. #3
    Senior Member zeppinger's Avatar
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    I use battery lights but they are all bolted to the bike. A thief would need tools to steal them. I don't use a bike computer because its too much work taking it on and off all the time.

    How about bike locks that work like lockers in a gym? You lock the bike up using a lock attached to the rack. You take your key from the rack. Maybe the keys would get lost a lot? Maybe a pay system would be better.

  4. #4
    On a Mission from God FunkyStickman's Avatar
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    Mr. Tuffy liners. They have completely changed my outlook on bike commuting.

    If I could afford dynamo lights (and find some that put out 8+ watts) I would buy them tomorrow.

    Good raingear.

  5. #5
    bragi bragi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerv View Post
    I'm trying to think of component setups/gadgets that make or would make transportational cycling convenient. I'm wondering this because every time I go to the store I follow this routine:
    - bike in the rack
    - drop kickstand
    - unlock cable lock, wrap around front tire and inside the frame
    - remove mirror from glasses
    - attach helmet to the bike
    - disengage pannier(s)
    - remove blinkies
    (Seems like a lot to do and in winter there are several other things... like removing balaclava...)

    Recently, I installed a dynamo hub wheel and now never have to futz with batteries, lights on and off the bike every time I go to the store... just hop on and go.

    A great feature would be a way to quickly lock up the bike. I guess locking up doesn't take that long, but it would be so nice just to roll into the bike stand, turn a key and it's done.

    What else?
    Maybe things don't need to be so secure? If I'm only going to be gone for a couple of hours or less, I just lock up using a short u-lock, to the rear bike tire through the frame, and call it good. I have Ortlieb panniers, which take exactly one second to remove from the bike, so my total time at the bike rack is only a minute or less. I leave all my lights and the bike computer attached to the bike at all times. So far, in six years, the only thing that's been stolen is a stainless steel water bottle that I sort of liked....

    Ways to make things even more convenient that I'd like to see would include:
    1. Rain gear that breathes so well that you don't sweat like crazy if you ride a little hard;
    2. A wool cap that fits under the helmet;
    3. Brake pads that last more than three months;
    4. A fast, effective way to clean rims. (Or drive trains, for that matter.)
    If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate.

  6. #6
    Stealing Spokes since 82' Fizzaly's Avatar
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    Do they make an actual seat cover im sure they do i just dont know where to look, the plastic sack works alright but i would like one that was designed for the job. Im not worried about my seat getting wet i just don't like the frost seat in the winter When i find one ill be happy

  7. #7
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    I use ring locks that are mounted to the bike, hard to lose the keys that way.

    Generator hubs with LED lights

    For short runs I leave the panniers on the bike. I have a big set of Basil Karravan II's that stay on the bike. I did run a small stainless steel cable through the loops on them to keep them with the bike.

    You can see the ring lock in the picture of the wheel. I will post a better one a bit later. To me it is probably the best thing I have put on the bike.

    Aaron



    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

    ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

    "Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
    RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
    _Nicodemus

    "Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
    Aluminum: barely a hundred
    Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
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  8. #8
    Live Deliberately. davidmcowan's Avatar
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    Anyone know a good place to buy Ring Locks in the U.S.? I'd prefer one that permanently mounts instead of the ziptyish variety..

  9. #9
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    shower cap. cheap and easy.
    Soma Saga, Bianchi single speed conversion
    Nishiki Cascade expedition conversion

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fizzaly View Post
    Do they make an actual seat cover im sure they do i just dont know where to look, the plastic sack works alright but i would like one that was designed for the job. Im not worried about my seat getting wet i just don't like the frost seat in the winter When i find one ill be happy
    shower cap. cheap and easy.
    Soma Saga, Bianchi single speed conversion
    Nishiki Cascade expedition conversion

  11. #11
    Stealing Spokes since 82' Fizzaly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by manicmike View Post
    shower cap. cheap and easy.
    I cant believe i didnt think of that, nice well im good no more complaints from me, unless somebody makes a machine that gives us a 20mph tail wind everywhere we go

  12. #12
    Senior Member Newspaperguy's Avatar
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    In winter, all I have to do is lock the bike to something secure and take off my helmet. The rear blinkies are on a small backpack and the front headlight clips to my helmet and unclips just as easily.

    In spring, summer and fall, when I use a much better bike, I just lock the bike, remove the computer and headlight and blinkies if I'm using them, since those things are on the bike then. Or, if I'm downtown I can just put my bike inside the building where I work, lock it up and then go from there.
    Life is good.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Seattle Forrest's Avatar
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    Covered bike parking with warm tea would be delightful. The one thing that makes cycling unattractive in the winter, is being cold and wet. I ride up hill to the store, and I'm warm in a few minutes, but then I get to the store, shed a layer or two into my pannier while I lock the bike up, gather my groceries, then load them into the pannier while I get my rain and cold weather gear on again. At this point I've lost all the warmth from my ride, and now the wet is stealing whatever heat I have left in my core. Warming up a second time is always worse than when I first set out.

    A lot of stores have something like awnings that cover their entrance, and occasionally the sidewalk in front of the store. It's no coincidence that I do most of my shopping at these places when it's 40 degrees and pouring.
    Don't believe everything you think.

  14. #14
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcowan View Post
    Anyone know a good place to buy Ring Locks in the U.S.? I'd prefer one that permanently mounts instead of the ziptyish variety..
    Cantitoe Road and Clever Cycles are two US supplier. I also order stuff from Dutch Bike Bits, they are NL based but the shipping is reasonable.

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

    ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

    "Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
    RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
    _Nicodemus

    "Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
    Aluminum: barely a hundred
    Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
    _krazygluon

  15. #15
    In the right lane gerv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wahoonc View Post
    Cantitoe Road and Clever Cycles are two US supplier. I also order stuff from Dutch Bike Bits, they are NL based but the shipping is reasonable.

    Aaron
    This is a self-locking scheme, so guessing most city cyclists would like to add another locking device. Guess that would work alone in most cases, except when some burley thief just decides to walk off with the bike.

  16. #16
    In the right lane gerv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FunkyStickman View Post
    Mr. Tuffy liners. They have completely changed my outlook on bike commuting.

    If I could afford dynamo lights (and find some that put out 8+ watts) I would buy them tomorrow.

    Good raingear.
    Those are good ones. I don't use tire liners any more (after a series of mysterious pinch flats), but I do buy Schwalbe flat proof tires like the Supreme... a little heavier but makes that late night home from work a little more convenient... unless I hit a roofing nail or something.

  17. #17
    bragi bragi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
    Covered bike parking with warm tea would be delightful. The one thing that makes cycling unattractive in the winter, is being cold and wet. I ride up hill to the store, and I'm warm in a few minutes, but then I get to the store, shed a layer or two into my pannier while I lock the bike up, gather my groceries, then load them into the pannier while I get my rain and cold weather gear on again. At this point I've lost all the warmth from my ride, and now the wet is stealing whatever heat I have left in my core. Warming up a second time is always worse than when I first set out.

    A lot of stores have something like awnings that cover their entrance, and occasionally the sidewalk in front of the store. It's no coincidence that I do most of my shopping at these places when it's 40 degrees and pouring.
    There is a local grocery store chain, PCC, that has covered bike parking at many of its stores. That's one of the big reasons I shop there. (Also because it's locally owned and they make a real effort to sell food that's been produced locally, too.)
    If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate.

  18. #18
    Member Willeke_igkt's Avatar
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    On my upright, mostly used as a shopping bike now, I use a ring lock, the good kind as the one pictured above, although I think I have used axa's for the last 3 bikes.
    For a short stay I use just that. When I leave the bike for hours, like at the train station bike park, I use a second separate lock. I prefer a cable lock from a different brand for that. And it goes through the stand, the front wheel and the frame.
    Most bike thiefs are specialized in one kind of locks and want quick and easy to take bikes, in the shopping streets here they are most likely to take a bike that is not locked at all, or with the cheap old version of the ring lock.
    At the bike park near the station the thiefs have more time, but there the choice of bikes is bigger and they will still mostly go for the better bike with the easier or single lock.
    If you use a kind of lock not usual in your area there is a smaller chance that the local thiefs are specialized in it.

    With my trike I use one square link chain with intergrated lock, because the insurance insist on one as heavy as that if a ring lock is not used. And on the trike I have not yet found a way to put a ring lock. And as secondary lock I use a cable lock again, a pretty good one.
    If the trike is in a location where a lot of thiefs are likely/able to see it, staying in one spot in a city for hours or every day in the same spot at work, I lock the frame to a secure point. In cities for hours I also use the secondary lock for the other wheels to the frame. If it is just for a short stop at the shops I often just lock one wheel to the frame.

    I use cheap bike computers, at about € 3 or $US 4 and I never ever take those from the bike when I leave it. The one on my shopping bike has been there for at least 8 years, since the bike was fairly new, and has never been pinced.
    Lights are all bolted onto the bike, dynamo driven, but likely less than 8 watt.
    I never leave (shopping) bags on the bike, and my paniers are all of the 'lift of in a second' kind and will go in with me.

    Stripping bikes for parts is not usual here, bike theft is.
    All bikes that have been stolen from me where inadequately locked for the lockation, being left outside overnight mostly.
    When I buy a bike/trike now I also buy insurance, covers a bike for 5 years with less paid each year, good for utility bikes.

    Added:
    Forgot to say, I wear no helmet, like most people here, so no time lost of that either, nor a place needed to store it.
    Last edited by Willeke_igkt; 12-02-10 at 05:18 PM. Reason: remembered I had forgotten something

  19. #19
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerv View Post
    This is a self-locking scheme, so guessing most city cyclists would like to add another locking device. Guess that would work alone in most cases, except when some burley thief just decides to walk off with the bike.
    The AXA defender has optional plug in chains and cables so it can also be used to lock the bike to a solid object.

    If you look at the picture of the bike you can see the chain coming out of the lock and looped up on top of the rack. FWIW my bike weighs over 50# so it had better be a BIG burly thief.

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

    ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

    "Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
    RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
    _Nicodemus

    "Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
    Aluminum: barely a hundred
    Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
    _krazygluon

  20. #20
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zeppinger View Post
    I don't use a bike computer because its too much work taking it on and off all the time.
    Huh? just take the little display off the mount. Stick it in your pocket. Takes less than one-half second.


    "Think Outside the Cage"

  21. #21
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
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    I don't know if this answers the OP's question, but I keep all my bike stuff in a little pouch. Tools, lights, spare batteries, extra tube, keys, map, etc. Then I just grab the pouch when I leave the house and stuff it in my backpack.

    This would also work if you used an easily detachable handlebar case or frame bag.


    "Think Outside the Cage"

  22. #22
    Senior Member iManda's Avatar
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    Sometimes the most time-consuming thing is finding a place to lock up if the usual suspects are already taken.

    Like you, I hate to take off gloves to fiddle with the bike for any extended period. I installed Pinhead locking skewers on the saddle and tires to worry less about having to thread a lock or locks throughout. I still U-lock through the front tire, though, to make it more difficult to break.

    I'm of two minds about whether it's easier to attach the helmet to the bike, or carry it in. Usually, I stuff it in a pannier (carry two Ortleibs), and pull it out at the cash register. One rear blinky is on my helmet and the other is left on the bike. The two front lights pop into my pocket.

    That's pretty much the routine, which seems similar to yours.

  23. #23
    Senior Member dynodonn's Avatar
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    I use a bar end mirror, no fussing with helmet or glasses types, gives enough info on whats going on behind me, anymore than that, a quick over the shoulder check is used. Zip tying/ metal clamping of lights to the bike for making it difficult for them to be removed, plus having reasonably priced, easy to replace lights is also a plus.

  24. #24
    Senior Member crazybikerchick's Avatar
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    Cycling to the on island store here is easy-peasy not having to worry about theft. Kick down kickstand, and walk in store.

    For city cycling, I think your process can be simplified a bit. Why not just wear your helmet and mirror into the store? Can start interesting conversations about cycling People always notice my mirror and didn't know that such a thing existed. Or get a Mirr-cycle mirror its a good one for on the bars.

    Blinkies I probably wouldn't bother removing especially if you are already unconcerned about theft to use a cable lock which is really IMO for keeping honest people honest not stopping a bike thief. I did lose a PB superflash once though but it was in a high bike theft area.

    A rack should negate having to use the kickstand probably more so if you use a short u-lock as the cable lock has enough slack the bike can fall.

    I was never a big fan of disengaging panniers so when I was in Toronto I went with one pannier, and on the other side a foldout basket. So on the rare occasions I needed more carrying capacity than one pannier I could put things in the basket (with foldup cloth shopping bags in the pannier)

  25. #25
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
    Covered bike parking with warm tea would be delightful. The one thing that makes cycling unattractive in the winter, is being cold and wet. I ride up hill to the store, and I'm warm in a few minutes, but then I get to the store, shed a layer or two into my pannier while I lock the bike up, gather my groceries, then load them into the pannier while I get my rain and cold weather gear on again. At this point I've lost all the warmth from my ride, and now the wet is stealing whatever heat I have left in my core. Warming up a second time is always worse than when I first set out.

    A lot of stores have something like awnings that cover their entrance, and occasionally the sidewalk in front of the store. It's no coincidence that I do most of my shopping at these places when it's 40 degrees and pouring.
    I've given up on layers of clothing for everyday cycling. I just wear a normal winter coat that has a zipper and pit zips. When I get to a store, I just throw the winter coat and my gloves in the shopping cart and I'm good to go. This has made my life a whole lot easier.

    (Of course I still use the high tech layers if I'm going on a long road ride, or mountain biking on the frozen lakes and rivers. But for everyday cycling in the city, it's just a regular winter coat like I used to wear in second grade.)


    "Think Outside the Cage"

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