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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 04-26-06, 11:25 PM   #1
marqueemoon
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So I recently became a skidder.

After gearing my bike lower I finally feel comfortable locking it up. I'm far from good at it, but I'm having a blast. Strangely, even though my right leg is stronger it feels more comfortable to keep that leg forward. I guess I just need more practice alternating. The back tire seems to be holding up well so far though.

One thing I've noticed since picking this up is the ugly looks I get from people. I was on my way to work today and came up on a light that had just turned yellow. I did a little mini skid well in front of the crosswalk and waited out the light in a trackstand well behind the crosswalk. This one woman crossing the street gave me the most evil look I'd seen in a long time.

What gives? Does this look really out of control to people (I'm sure a little when I do it.) or is there some other reason it annoys them?
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Old 04-26-06, 11:39 PM   #2
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yea, it looks pretty meanacing to a pedestrian if you're skidding towards them at a crosswalk. Once a middle aged lady on the UES was spooked by my stop and exclaimed "oh, you stupid, stupid person!".
I almost fell off my bike I began laughing so hard.

(note, I stopped well before the crosswalk)

Last edited by AfterThisNap; 04-28-06 at 12:26 PM.
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Old 04-26-06, 11:44 PM   #3
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Probably they think you either were doing it to scare them, or else you look out of control.
What would you think if I car came to a stop behind or even near you by skidding?

Just a thought.
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Old 04-26-06, 11:46 PM   #4
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don't worry about the dirty looks....worry about your tires....heh.
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Old 04-27-06, 01:08 AM   #5
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don't worry about the dirty looks....worry about your tires....heh.
damn straight.

on a related note, i'm in love with you.
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Old 04-27-06, 06:38 AM   #6
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yesterday i skidded to a trackstand. i though, "cool."
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Old 04-27-06, 06:45 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZappCatt
What would you think if I car came to a stop behind or even near you by skidding?
Very good point ... one that's sort of obvious now that I've considered it.


Quote:
Originally Posted by queerpunk
yesterday i skidded to a trackstand. i though, "cool."
But on the other hand, points for style. Nicely done.

Last edited by eyefloater; 04-27-06 at 06:51 AM.
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Old 04-27-06, 06:56 AM   #8
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yesterday i did 3 backwards circles, my first ever.
very excited
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Old 04-27-06, 07:09 AM   #9
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has anyone else noticed that not using brakes (or breaks if you're dislexic) helps you get the better of drivers in -i see you, you see me- situations. i have noticed multiple times when facing off with a car (that is usually choosing to ignore my right of way) that they look me over for a sec and then yield, and i can only imagine it is because i look as if i'm not going to stop. this may be heightened due to the fact that i have a brake yet am not using it...
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Old 04-27-06, 09:50 AM   #10
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I also have an extremely strong preference for right leg forward, left back when skidding. It's way more comfortable for me. Some people have a preference, some don't. I guess if you're running brakeless, you should be okay with either side equally, but I run a front brake at the moment, so it's not an issue for me.
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Old 04-27-06, 09:52 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EnLaCalle
I also have an extremely strong preference for right leg forward, left back when skidding. It's way more comfortable for me. Some people have a preference, some don't. I guess if you're running brakeless, you should be okay with either side equally, but I run a front brake at the moment, so it's not an issue for me.
i skid left-back. i can skip but NOT skid the other way around. it's terribly confusing for me, and i've fallen painfully each time i've tried it.
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Old 04-27-06, 10:16 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marqueemoon

One thing I've noticed since picking this up is the ugly looks I get from people.
ever since i mastered the super fun and reliable hockey skid it's become 90% of my stops.

imagine the looks you get from the crosswalk when they see a bike fishtailing and skidding sideways at them.
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Old 04-27-06, 10:25 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EnLaCalle
I also have an extremely strong preference for right leg forward, left back when skidding. It's way more comfortable for me. Some people have a preference, some don't. I guess if you're running brakeless, you should be okay with either side equally, but I run a front brake at the moment, so it's not an issue for me.
It probably has to do with how you surf/skateboard/snowboard. If you're goofy foot you would prefer your right foot foward, regular, left foot forward.
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Old 04-27-06, 10:28 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sivat
It probably has to do with how you surf/skateboard/snowboard. If you're goofy foot you would prefer your right foot foward, regular, left foot forward.
very true because i am regular footed for all of those activities and I prefer left foot forward for skipping/skidding. I have been trying right foot forward more often and it was weird at first, but it gets easier with time.
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Old 04-27-06, 10:43 AM   #15
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nah. I was a big into skateboarding during my teenage years, and I've always skating regular-foot. In fact, skating and doing tricks goofy foot was always extremely difficult for me. I was only able to maybe get a pitiful 1/2" ollie skating goofy, and would probably fall afterwards... I kick a soccer ball with my right too.

I don't why my skidding preference is how it is. But it doesn't bother me.
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Old 04-27-06, 10:52 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EnLaCalle

I don't why my skidding preference is how it is. But it doesn't bother me.
And that is the way it should be

One of my good friends is right handed for everything, but when we play golf he hits lefty. He will even tell you that is the only activity that he can do lefty.
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Old 04-27-06, 10:56 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by killsurfcity
has anyone else noticed that not using brakes (or breaks if you're dislexic) helps you get the better of drivers in -i see you, you see me- situations. i have noticed multiple times when facing off with a car (that is usually choosing to ignore my right of way) that they look me over for a sec and then yield, and i can only imagine it is because i look as if i'm not going to stop. this may be heightened due to the fact that i have a brake yet am not using it...
I would get this idea out of your mind as quickly as possible. Even if it were true (which it isn't), some drivers still won't *really* see you, won't care, or most likely won't be able to estimate your speed and behavior well enough to do you any good.

Last edited by ZachS; 04-27-06 at 11:03 AM.
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Old 04-27-06, 10:59 AM   #18
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I have been able to skid since the 1st week i got my bike. I started doing short skips a few months ago. YEsterday, i did what i will call an emergency skip--i lifted my arse and locked my left leg and my rear tire violently hopped five or six times, really loud cause all the crap in my saddle bag was bouncing around--scared the crap out of people on the MUP. i got PLENTY of dirty looks
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Old 04-27-06, 11:10 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by ZachS
I would get this idea out of your mind as quickly as possible. Even if it were true (which it isn't), some drivers still won't *really* see you, won't care, or most likely won't be able to estimate your speed and behavior well enough to do you any good.
I couldn't disagree more you should treat all traffic interactions as a game of chicken. The best way to win a game of chicken is to remove your steering wheel and hold it out the window for your opponent to see. The bike equivalent of that is removing your brake. I bet the car will back down at least 90% of the time thats pretty good odds against getting hit in my book.
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Old 04-27-06, 11:15 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by ZachS
I would get this idea out of your mind as quickly as possible.
+1

Drivers don't know what a brake looks like, hell they don't even know you're riding a bicycle, they probably think you are some type of dog/human hybrid.
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Old 04-27-06, 11:21 AM   #21
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+1

Drivers don't know what a brake looks like, hell they don't even know you're riding a bicycle, they probably think you are some type of dog/human hybrid.

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Old 04-27-06, 12:58 PM   #22
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I have to give creedence to the brake thing. I encounter situations all the time where left turning cars think I am yielding because I am braking, and pull forward.

I used my brake because some crazy car driver is starting to turn AFTER I ENTER THE INTERSECTION while I was going ~25 mph, not because I wanted to yield to them. So in these situations it is usually better if I avoid touching my brake. And hell, If I were hockey skidding into that intersection, they would KNOW they better not try to turn because it looks as if I think collision is imminent.
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Old 04-27-06, 01:04 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZappCatt
What would you think if I car came to a stop behind or even near you by skidding?

+1

plus it really isn't that cool and it ****s your tyres.

i don't run a brake and i rarely need to out-and-out skid to stop

very rarely
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Old 04-27-06, 01:24 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eddiebrannan
+1

plus it really isn't that cool and it ****s your tyres.

i don't run a brake and i rarely need to out-and-out skid to stop

very rarely
I wasn't suggesting that it's *that* cool, but it's new to me and therefore novel. ZappCatt's point is a good one.

Seattle is hilly. The brake stays no matter how good I get at skipping/skidding. I would like to get to the point where I am good enough at it to stop from a pretty good clip without touching the brake though.
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Old 04-28-06, 07:40 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dutret
I couldn't disagree more you should treat all traffic interactions as a game of chicken. The best way to win a game of chicken is to remove your steering wheel and hold it out the window for your opponent to see. The bike equivalent of that is removing your brake. I bet the car will back down at least 90% of the time thats pretty good odds against getting hit in my book.

I've also noticed I get more courtesy from drivers when riding fixed. I don't think it has anything to do with no brakes...most drivers don't know enough about bikes, or aren't lookng closely enough to see that you have no brakes or are riding a fixed gear. What they see is you pedalling..never mind the fact that your backpedaling...99.9% of people don't know what a fixed gear bicycle is, much less how you might brake with one. They just see you exerting effort and the pedals are going around..it gives the allusion that you are not going to stop, and more likely that you are actually accelerating to blow through the intersection.
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