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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 06-02-10, 09:01 AM   #1
norskagent
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I had to use my brake today


Normally on my ~10 mile coummute I can manage my speed reduction and braking most or all of the way with my legs. This morning just 2 blocks from my house, it starts. Nothing too dramatic, just multiple inconveniences. I'm approaching a stop sign as a car is stopping at the stop sign opposite me. I still have ~100' to go so I slow and assume they will clear by the time I get there. They just sit there, so I wave them on as I continue to slow. I finally stop and step down, thus forcing their hand. They finally turn left in front of me. Later on it seemed all the stop signs I usually can roll through had car conflicts, so I stopped repeatedly. Plus the greenway leg of my commute was partly flooded/muddy (hike a bike). Finally, as I turned wide (because of my fixed crank) into my work parking lot, someone was leaving I avoided a slow motion head-on by going wider almost into the curbline. Hopefully this afternoon will fare better...
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Old 06-02-10, 09:09 AM   #2
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I still have ~100' to go so I slow and assume they will clear by the time I get there. They just sit there
effing hate that
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Old 06-02-10, 09:11 AM   #3
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I use my front brake here and there. I don't feel any lesser for using it.

Sometimes I just have to stop quicker. Especially when riding with someone or multiple someone's because they stop at variable speeds to me, especially ones with freewheels.

when riding alone I don't tend to use it that often, but enough.
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Old 06-02-10, 09:11 AM   #4
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If I had been brakeless, this morning's ride would have had me blubbering mad by the time I got to work!
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Old 06-02-10, 09:19 AM   #5
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.... assume they will clear by the time I get there. They just sit there, so I wave them on as I continue to slow. I finally stop and step down, thus forcing their hand.
this happens to me a few times on every commute. also hate when a car in cross traffic slows down when they see me and end up closing the gap behind them that was going to be my chance to cross.
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Old 06-02-10, 10:21 AM   #6
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oh man, yesterday some 14 year old kid was standing in street smoking talking to his friend.
So he has his back to the road and points with the cigarette somewhere, coming an inch away from my face, if i didn't do a NEO maneuver I would've had to kill this guy.
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Old 06-02-10, 10:38 AM   #7
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^ I had some walking high school kids see me appraching, so they started to drift out into the lane, to "scare" me I suppose. So I sped up to ramming speed, and held my line, which had the desired effect (for me).
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Old 06-02-10, 10:45 AM   #8
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Riveting tale, chap. I suggest you keep the front brake.
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Old 06-02-10, 11:51 AM   #9
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It didn't happen today, but another thing that's aggravating is slowing to let a car pass you...and they won't pass. Sometimes I get into a "I can go slower than you" mode, just to make them pass. If it pisses them off as well I guess I succeeded at something!
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Old 06-02-10, 12:19 PM   #10
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So you had to use your brake to stop for stop signs?
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Old 06-02-10, 12:31 PM   #11
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today, yes - most are in neighborhoods (on corners where I'm turning) and usually no cars are about - and I can cruise through them while scanning for cars. Today there seemed to be a car conflict at every one, right as I started to think I could keep cruising.
Now it's raining.
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Old 06-02-10, 12:33 PM   #12
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effing hate that
+1, its odd we'd rather drivers be more aggressive in times such as these, though nearly all other times we'd rather drivers be more cautious around cyclists.
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Old 06-02-10, 07:41 PM   #13
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Just yesterday I was almost run down by a motorist riding the line of the bike lane. But in his defense, he stayed on said line as far as the eye could see. Consistency if nothing else! But back to the thread, I have to use my front break on average of once per ride due to cars pulling out too far into intersections to make a turn. Not to be anti-breakless, but I do think a front break is great. No skid could stop a bike as quickly as a front break, no matter how skilled the rider.
Just my 2cents.
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Old 06-02-10, 08:50 PM   #14
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I usually dont need to depend on my brake, but in winter months I make sure that the brake it available. Right now it is off.
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Old 06-02-10, 10:57 PM   #15
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+1 to hating when cars stop when you're far away or when youre already stopped at the sign. Takes MUCH longer for a bike to accelerate and get across the intersection than your car.
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Old 06-02-10, 11:03 PM   #16
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Good lord
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Old 06-02-10, 11:08 PM   #17
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I'm thinking of getting a brake (not 'break'), the one that came with the bike was super crappy and the lever rattled a lot (original '85ish), driving me mad. Having one allows you to ride faster with out having to scan any farther ahead then when riding slowly. It keeps you on your toes though, running with out brakes.
Its all good.
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Old 06-03-10, 12:19 AM   #18
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Holy s---! I can't believe I spelled brake like "break"! And 4 F-ing times on top of that.... must have been a bit drunk!
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Old 06-03-10, 12:40 AM   #19
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i have a csb about brakes too! i was riding back from class on campus and then this parkour idiot flings himself over a wall and right in front of my bike. had to use the front brake in order to not run him over.
That guy was such a tard....I dont have a problem with them doing it on campus, just watch where the hell you're going to be and make sure you dont land on somebody!
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Old 06-03-10, 09:30 PM   #20
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Holy s---! I can't believe I spelled brake like "break"! And 4 F-ing times on top of that.... must have been a bit drunk!
I hope you were getting quadded
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Old 06-03-10, 09:38 PM   #21
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this happens to me a few times on every commute. also hate when a car in cross traffic slows down when they see me and end up closing the gap behind them that was going to be my chance to cross.
+1. I think that my biggest peave is when, at a 2 way where I've got the stop sign and I stop for a car who doesn't have a stop sign, but then they stop. I get that it's nice or whatever, but ****, we don't need special treatment. We just need people to be aware, alert and capable before courtesy. Well, IMO anyway.
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Old 06-03-10, 09:59 PM   #22
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I use my brake when I need to stop. It's really handy.
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time's up
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Old 06-04-10, 01:24 AM   #23
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i was riding back from class on campus and then this parkour idiot flings himself over a wall and right in front of my bike. had to use the front brake in order to not run him over. That guy was such a tard
We have so many peds here that just walk into traffic without looking its amazing more people dont get hit... in the past week I have had 2 different women be digging in their car suddenly spin around close door and start walking back across the street. No pause no looking for traffic and I almost hit them... This is one of the many contributors to why I use a front brake...

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+1. I think that my biggest peave is when, at a 2 way where I've got the stop sign and I stop for a car who doesn't have a stop sign, but then they stop. I get that it's nice or whatever, but ****, we don't need special treatment. We just need people to be aware, alert and capable before courtesy. Well, IMO anyway.
+100, though I understand why they do it here. So many cyclists just dart through without even looking. I have almost been hit so many times by cyclists just not looking. They are almost as bad as the peds here... I mean cruise signs and all but at least look first...
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Old 06-04-10, 06:16 AM   #24
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On a related note, my bike has a front keirin clamp on brake, which is one reason I try to use it sparingly. It works fine and the front fork is fine also, even after all the abuse I dished out on it.
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Old 06-04-10, 06:27 AM   #25
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I use my brake when I need to stop. It's really handy.
Weird thing about brakes...they aid in braking.
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