Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

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)

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 02-21-08, 07:28 AM   #1
TimArchy
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
TimArchy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Atlanta
Bikes: Zeus (Razesa) tarck, Giant TCR road, Eddy Merckx road, Fuji Touring Series IV for everything else
Posts: 1,155
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The bangkok scene

I'm on a train headed south to bangkok. I've got my bike safely secured in the cargo car and i just got finished drinking with some french tourists, one of whom is having a birthday.

The moon is out and i'm watching the silhouetted trees pass my window, thinking about riding tomorrow morning with the Bkk fixed crew in some of the worst traffic in the known world.
TimArchy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-08, 07:56 AM   #2
fordfasterr
One speed: FAST !
 
fordfasterr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Ft. Lauderdale FL
Bikes: Ebay Bikes... =)
Posts: 3,375
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
good luck to ya ! and take some pics for us.
fordfasterr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-08, 08:36 AM   #3
skanking biker
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Madison, WI
Bikes:
Posts: 2,209
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Bancock......hA! reminds me of an old joke


Confucius say:........Man who walk into airport door is going to bang cock
skanking biker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-08, 09:03 AM   #4
doczein
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 14
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
you think bangkok's bad. try jakarta.
doczein is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-08, 09:31 AM   #5
DenverFIXED
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: denver
Bikes: http://fixedgeargallery.com/2006/apr/DavidSamuelLeeHostetler.htm
Posts: 15
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I can't imagine riding in Bangkok..... there is just so much happening on the street, hundreds of scooters buzzing in and out of traffic, taxis driving in between lanes, tuk-tuks constantly stopping and starting, people randomly running across the street and street vendors pushing carts on the curb. So insane. When I was there, I was afraid to cross the street, let alone ride a bike. Good luck!
DenverFIXED is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-08, 08:52 PM   #6
TimArchy
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
TimArchy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Atlanta
Bikes: Zeus (Razesa) tarck, Giant TCR road, Eddy Merckx road, Fuji Touring Series IV for everything else
Posts: 1,155
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
So far so good. Train ride was nice once the french people shut up.

The traffic isn't so bad yet. The worst on my ride from the train station to the hotel were the busses. They don't give a damn who is in their way.
TimArchy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-08, 09:02 PM   #7
bexley
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: the land of ice and snow
Bikes:
Posts: 999
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Dhaka is worse.
bexley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-22-08, 12:49 PM   #8
TimArchy
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
TimArchy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Atlanta
Bikes: Zeus (Razesa) tarck, Giant TCR road, Eddy Merckx road, Fuji Touring Series IV for everything else
Posts: 1,155
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I'm sure it is.

I rode tonight with 5 kids from BKK Fixed.
The traffic wasn't that crazy actually. A lot like any major american city except more chaos and fewer people following the rules. And the evil busses. They can smell your fear.

We started off the night by having one of our members get struck by a taxi. During the ensuing discussion with the police, it was decided to move the whole thing to the local police station. The cop locked our friend's bike in his little booth and drove him to the station on his motorcycle. We found out aftergetting there that for some reason the officer had given our friend's ID to the taxi driver assuming that he was following us to the station. After 20 minutes of waiting, it was decided that the taxi driver took off with the ID in tow. Our friend was sent home.

If you're wondering about things like "Why would a police officer give one person's ID to another and drive off?" and "Why aren't the police interested in finding the person who took the ID or at least filing a report on it?", the only answer is "This Is Thailand".

Our friend resigned himself to getting a new ID and we continued riding. We saw lots of sights and rode in lots of traffic. Pictures forthcoming, probably when I get back to Chiang Mai and to a computer that I know won't put viruses on my flash drive.
TimArchy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-22-08, 09:59 PM   #9
Kinjo
Member
 
Kinjo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: SF, CA
Bikes: Casati Monza Track, Gazelle Track, (soon to be) San Rensho Track & a Molteni De Rosa Neo Primato Road bike
Posts: 36
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Two SF riders are on a plane right now with their bikes heading to Bangkok. Lupin the Third and Brandon are going to be running around Bangkok on a '68 Paramount chrome track and a black Kalavinka track all next week. A yellow Cinelli Olympic track bike is also traveling with them to go to a lucky Bangkok local. Check BKK fixed for their updates and you should try to meet up with them - good fellas.

Kinjo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-22-08, 10:13 PM   #10
TimArchy
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
TimArchy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Atlanta
Bikes: Zeus (Razesa) tarck, Giant TCR road, Eddy Merckx road, Fuji Touring Series IV for everything else
Posts: 1,155
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I'll be on the train back to Chiang Mai Sunday night. If they get here before then, we'll ride.
Ball from BKK Fixed has my number if they want to ride on sunday.
TimArchy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-08, 09:31 AM   #11
dubstylee
meh
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: MSP
Bikes: Rush Hour
Posts: 193
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Holy crap you are crazy. I rented a bike in Chiang Mai. That was kinda nice actually. But Bangkok... no way.

The scary thing about Bangkok is everyone goes fast. It's not like other SE Asian cities in Vietnam, Cambodia, etc where theres tons of crazy motorbiking, but at least they are slow.

I crammed onto a Tuk Tuk with 6 other Dutch, German, and French tourists, and had the misfortune of pretty much hanging out of the back. We were about 3 inches from getting rear ended on that ride, a taxi behind us locked up it's brakes and screeched to a stop. Probably messing with us.

Are you on one of those crusty trains that runs from Chiang Mai to Bangkok in like 15 hours? Man that ride was rough... probably because I overdid it on the Thai 'whiskey'. I think the bus ride from Bangkok to Phuket was worse though.
dubstylee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-08, 01:25 PM   #12
SuperVillain
superpredictable
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Madison, WI
Bikes:
Posts: 193
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Get a tofu beet burger at Big John's in Thong Lor (Sukhummvit 55) for me!

Funny thing about Bangkok is that while the city itself is so packed, chaotic, dirty and smelly, there's a train system running right overhead that's clean, modern, orderly and somehow refreshing.
SuperVillain is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-08, 01:29 PM   #13
deathhare
:jarckass:
 
deathhare's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Nashville
Bikes:
Posts: 6,562
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I have a friend I went to Japanese school with who is from Bangkok.
He had nothing good to say about the place.
Maybe its different for tourists like you guys?

I always avoided it cause there was always somewhere else i wanted to go more.
Maybe should check it out.
deathhare is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-08, 01:36 PM   #14
patachenca412
Member
 
patachenca412's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Bikes:
Posts: 35
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
hey timArchy - i'm moving to chiang mai in 5 months. i'm curious about what to expect bike-wise. i've been several times but always shorter visits with no time to ride. got any shop recommendations/websites? have you been to the velodrome? basically, whatever you can tell me would be awesome!
patachenca412 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-08, 11:14 PM   #15
TimArchy
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
TimArchy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Atlanta
Bikes: Zeus (Razesa) tarck, Giant TCR road, Eddy Merckx road, Fuji Touring Series IV for everything else
Posts: 1,155
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My general impressions after two days and two nights:

They like big streets. I mean bike like at least 4 lanes in each direction. Which is kinds of nice becuase there is lots of room to move. The problem is that the left two lanes (the drive in the left here) are occupied by blood seeking busses and passenger seeking taxis. One is out to get you and the other actively denies your existence. The right lanes are taken by those who are simply trying to get from A to B. And contrary to thousands of years of Thai culture moving at a slow, relaxed pace, when they get in a vehicle just getting somewhere requires as much speed as possible. It is odd that though they are generally content to sit in traffic foir extended periods without getting angry, drivers are violently jealous of their right to go fast whenever there is more than 10m of clear road ahead of them.

Last night Ball and I were riding down one such large road, near the outside lane. A taxi flew past me on the right and attempted to merge left into the space then occupied by Ball. The taxi honked twice, Ball slowed a bit and the taxi zipped left in the rapidly closing space between Ball and the car waiting at the light in front of him, nearly killing Ball and hitting the car. The taxi's urgent purpose? To wait at the stop light in a position 15m in front of where he would have been had he maintained his lane. We rode past him and were gone before the light changed. I told Ball that in the US, the taxi may have gotten a u-lock through the wondow for a maneuver such as that. He just shrugged. There's no point in getting angry. Thats how they drive. The cab driver wasn't angry that Ball was there, he simply felt that Ball should move.

I rode down a large road alone yesterday and lost count of the number of times I was nearly killed.

This city is not for the faint of heart. But for everyone else it's a ball. Just keep your head up, learn how to check behind yourself without taking your eyes off the road in front of you, and adopt a fatatalityistic outlook on life. Not fatalistic like "we're all going to die", but fatalityistic like "I'm going to be killed at some point and there's nothing I can do to prevent it".

And as for the Tuk tuk/taxi incedent, it's much more fun then the tuk tuk is a bike and the taxi is a city bus.

In general, I've always thought that riding in traffic is more like a dance than a fight. You have to learn the way your partner moves and move with them. Well, riding in Bangkok traffic is more like that Brazilian fighting/dancing thing that looks really pretty and smooth, but whose underlying essence is still to kill as quickly and completly as possible.

All that said, stay tuned for Thailand's First Alleycat "Bangkok Draft". April 19th.
TimArchy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-08, 11:22 PM   #16
TimArchy
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
TimArchy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Atlanta
Bikes: Zeus (Razesa) tarck, Giant TCR road, Eddy Merckx road, Fuji Touring Series IV for everything else
Posts: 1,155
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by patachenca412 View Post
hey timArchy - i'm moving to chiang mai in 5 months. i'm curious about what to expect bike-wise. i've been several times but always shorter visits with no time to ride. got any shop recommendations/websites? have you been to the velodrome? basically, whatever you can tell me would be awesome!
The best advice I can offer is to bring any non-shimano or track specific tools with you. Most of the shops here won't work on threade headsets or campy anything.

Expect to be on your toes all the time. When I ride places I generally ride pretty fast because I'm afraid to ride slow.

Bring a geard bike also if you have one. Riding the city on a track bike is great, but there are some epic climbs close to the city that I really want to try. I'm bringing my geared bike back with me at the end of the summer.

The track is cool. It is locked up but no one has ever stopped me from getting in and riding. It will be good to have someone to ride with.

I'll be back in the states from June 20th to Aug 10th or so. Then I'll be back for another year of teaching. The BKK kids are psyched about riding in chiang mai so hopefully we can have some races and stuff next year.
TimArchy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-08, 11:32 PM   #17
TimArchy
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
TimArchy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Atlanta
Bikes: Zeus (Razesa) tarck, Giant TCR road, Eddy Merckx road, Fuji Touring Series IV for everything else
Posts: 1,155
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by deathhare View Post
I have a friend I went to Japanese school with who is from Bangkok.
He had nothing good to say about the place.
Maybe its different for tourists like you guys?

I always avoided it cause there was always somewhere else i wanted to go more.
Maybe should check it out.
I really feel about it the same way I feel about new york. I love riding here, but it would take a hell of a lot to get me to live here. I thought I wouldn't want to see this place either, but it really is much cooler than I thought.

It is worth checking out if you can afford the airfare. Hotels are cheap. The one I stayed in had AC and a private bath for $15 a night. And if you like upper middle class kids pretending to be backpackers, you'll have lots of people to talk to. "Backpacker" here seems to have taken on the meaning of "one who carries a very large backpack" and has little or nothing to do with how they actually travel or wheather or not they really need the backpack. I think a lot of them would really be better off with one of those rolling suitcase things. But then they'd get laughed out of the guesthouse.
TimArchy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-08, 11:49 PM   #18
operator
cab horn
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Toronto
Bikes: 1987 Bianchi Campione
Posts: 28,306
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by TimArchy View Post
The best advice I can offer is to bring any non-shimano or track specific tools with you. Most of the shops here won't work on threade headsets or campy anything.
Any particular reason why?
operator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-08, 12:00 AM   #19
TimArchy
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
TimArchy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Atlanta
Bikes: Zeus (Razesa) tarck, Giant TCR road, Eddy Merckx road, Fuji Touring Series IV for everything else
Posts: 1,155
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
the middle class and therefore recreational cycling in chiang mai is new, so the shops don't get call for much older stuff. And trying to get campy here is like trying to get Pepsi in a resturant in the south. Shimano (and by extension Trek, since I'm convinced that they are owned by the same evil cycling overlord) runs this place.

There is also a fairly limited selection of road bike accessories since most people ride mountain bikes, even those who ride solely on the street. I've seen a total of about 15 road bikes in chiang mai.
TimArchy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-08, 12:08 AM   #20
morbot
Senior Member
 
morbot's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 789
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by TimArchy View Post
fatalityistic like "I'm going to be killed at some point and there's nothing I can do to prevent it"
thats what i told myself when i started shooting heroin
morbot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-08, 08:20 AM   #21
deathhare
:jarckass:
 
deathhare's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Nashville
Bikes:
Posts: 6,562
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by TimArchy View Post
"Backpacker" here seems to have taken on the meaning of "one who carries a very large backpack" and has little or nothing to do with how they actually travel or wheather or not they really need the backpack. I think a lot of them would really be better off with one of those rolling suitcase things. But then they'd get laughed out of the guesthouse.
haha
deathhare is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-08, 03:27 PM   #22
genericbikedude
如果你能讀了這個你講中文
 
genericbikedude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: New York
Bikes:
Posts: 3,542
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
wow. bangkok is nuts and the pollution is terrible. when I was there I didn't see a single bike. I hated everything about that place except for the noodle soup.
genericbikedude is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-08, 04:05 PM   #23
bexley
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: the land of ice and snow
Bikes:
Posts: 999
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Story:

A friend and I are riding rented motorbikes (yea yea) in Thailand. There's no such thing as a traffic infraction, so he was a bit surprised when a cop on foot signalled him to pull over. I was ahead and got the story later.

The first thing out of the cop's mouth is an offer: "you looking for girl, boy, good time?". My friend says "no", he tries to market it a little more: "very young, nice" etc., etc..

My buddy gives him a firm "NO!", at which point the cop tells him that it's unfortunate, because he broke the law by driving the wrong way on a one-way road. "What are you talking about?" my friend replies.

The cop pulls out a piece of paper, draws an arrow on it and holds it up--"see, one way". My friend knows the drill and pulls out a piece of monetary paper. Story over.

Yep, Thai cops.
bexley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-08, 04:19 PM   #24
deathhare
:jarckass:
 
deathhare's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Nashville
Bikes:
Posts: 6,562
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Its the same all over SE Asia.
deathhare is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-08, 04:42 PM   #25
Zombie Carl
Are we not men?
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Amsterdam for now
Bikes:
Posts: 1,275
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Sounds like Indonesia.

I'm 100% down with any place that lays out the peanut sauce thick.
Zombie Carl is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:39 PM.