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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 03-06-06, 07:45 PM   #1
Slodo
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Chicago falling through steel bridges

Just got back from a ride and nearly killed myself on the steel grate bridge on Halsted near Division. I didn't actually wipe out but for a good second or two felt my tires slipping sideways almost into traffic. Anybody else have any such stories or advice from one of the many Chicago bridges? PS: I figured out it is impossible to get from the north side to the Loop without going over at least a few of these steel ruffians.
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Old 03-06-06, 07:48 PM   #2
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talk to absntr
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Old 03-06-06, 08:01 PM   #3
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use the sidewalk
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Old 03-06-06, 08:05 PM   #4
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also...

state, franklin, lake, and washington's grates are filled with concerete.

you can take clark, lincoln, ashland, or damen to avoid steel crossing the river...

i have learned my lesson.
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Old 03-06-06, 08:07 PM   #5
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They freaked me out pretty bad at first... however the wobbles themselves i don't think are enough to make you go down. It really does feel like you are going to topple over though. Loosen your elbows and stay in the saddle and ride it like normal asphalt and I guarantee that you won't go down unless you do something dumb (ie. don't try and skid, don't make any fast maneuvers, don't lock your elbows). If you are still fearful of them then i'd say just get up on the sidewalk for that section - though often times they have nasty parts and gaps too that could lead to pinch flats, etc.
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Old 03-06-06, 08:11 PM   #6
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I've had the same problem a couple of times. now i hop the sidewalk when ever it's wet out. it's scary as all hell.

Last edited by wildrobot; 03-07-06 at 11:55 AM.
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Old 03-06-06, 08:17 PM   #7
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Yeah, and I just remembered that on that particular bridge (Halsted at Division) there is a huge gap about two feet in width between the road surface and the side barrier. I could just see myself wiping out and plunging into the Chicago river with bike still attached to my feet. I would drown and it would totally ruin my Brooks. *gulp*
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Old 03-06-06, 08:25 PM   #8
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i can't even picture any of this. sounds pretty dangerous. i don't suppose anyone has a picture?
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Old 03-06-06, 08:28 PM   #9
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I'm gonna try to snap one next time I'm there. The bridge must be a hundred years old- total peril.
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Old 03-06-06, 08:29 PM   #10
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NOoooOoOOOOO NOT THE BROOKS.

But +1 for talking to absentr
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Old 03-06-06, 08:35 PM   #11
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Been there, this weather sucks....
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Old 03-06-06, 09:00 PM   #12
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on rainy days, i take the sidewalks on bridges, strictly. today was 8+ hours of annoyed pedestrians because i didn't want to die everytime i crossed the river at dearborn, or randolph, or lasalle, etc. grated bridges + water = getting really ****ing hurt. don't be afraid of the sidewalk on days of inclimate weather.
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Old 03-06-06, 09:01 PM   #13
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I propose that "pulling a Dave Matthews" be established as the official term for any mishap involving the $#%$& grate bridges.
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Old 03-06-06, 09:03 PM   #14
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I would also like to see a picture. I can't picture what they look like. We don't have grates here. Just rreaaly bad pot holes.
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Old 03-06-06, 09:09 PM   #15
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Old 03-06-06, 09:12 PM   #16
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I've seen grated bridges around here like that. I couldn't imagine how you would fall into the river though?? If there's enough space to slip through that sounds unneccesarily dangerous.
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Old 03-06-06, 09:12 PM   #17
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oh, sweet, sweet wells. if only it would look that dry for the duration of the week.
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Old 03-06-06, 09:22 PM   #18
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Yes, dumping feces on people is cool. Dave matthews has been doing that for years now...
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Old 03-06-06, 09:22 PM   #19
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You wouldn't fall through the grate, he was talking about how the barrier on the side doesn't go all the way down, so if you were sliding on your side you could go underneath. The grate just gives you this awful tractionless vibration feeling, like all of a sudden the road turned into one of those vibrating tabletop soccer games and you're a top-heavy game piece.
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Old 03-06-06, 09:22 PM   #20
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Don't let the bridges unnerve you. Sure you'll get the wobbles, but the only real threat is slipping between two pannels. There are only two bridges that I know of with spaces like that: Lasalle and Cortland. Watch out for Cortland, I know three people who have been in accidents there!
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Old 03-06-06, 09:56 PM   #21
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Hey Naz.....post the brainfund poster.
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Old 03-06-06, 09:56 PM   #22
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i fell in this slit in the bridge/overpass thing over by chicago and halstead...just passing over it and my front wheel sank in.....my wheels were no more
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Old 03-06-06, 10:24 PM   #23
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I saw someone who bit it hard on the Chicago bridge. Their tire got stuck where the access panel was. The wheel was literally stuck up to the fork. I rode by just after the ambulance got there. It was not a pretty sight.

I try to avoid the metal bridges when it's wet out.
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Old 03-06-06, 11:44 PM   #24
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did't ryan almost die during an alleycat on one?
back in oct?
i bunny hop them so it isn't really an issue for me, but i could see how they might be a problem, I can feel them pulling the Tires when i drive my H2 while talking on my phone.
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Old 03-07-06, 02:06 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChicagoDave
They freaked me out pretty bad at first... however the wobbles themselves i don't think are enough to make you go down. It really does feel like you are going to topple over though. Loosen your elbows and stay in the saddle and ride it like normal asphalt and I guarantee that you won't go down unless you do something dumb (ie. don't try and skid, don't make any fast maneuvers, don't lock your elbows). If you are still fearful of them then i'd say just get up on the sidewalk for that section - though often times they have nasty parts and gaps too that could lead to pinch flats, etc.

i concur, as a messenger i find it best to just ride it out if i have to go over it. The wells st. bridge can be a mighty wicked beast when it is 'sleety' out.
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