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Thread: Frozen Bell

  1. #1
    Designated Drinker Wulfheir's Avatar
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    Frozen Bell

    I was riding along the calgary pathways this weekend and my bell was frozen and didn't ding half the time, anybody have this problem?
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  2. #2
    Long Live Long Rides
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    Wulfheir, do people accept you ringing the bell before you pass? I was riding the Katy trail this weekend and got some pretty rude comments trying to do the polite thing and ring the bell before blowing by! After that I started 'clicking' my break levers so they could hear I was behind them! That actually worked! To me, THAT was rude!
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    Designated Drinker Wulfheir's Avatar
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    oh yeah, our pathway system is pretty good for that. one ding and they are as far right as they can get. you get the occasional newbie park user who rubber necks looking for the source of the bell. i suppose i could say "passing left" if my bell doesn't work.
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    oaxacarider
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    try yelling "on your left"

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    Formerly Known as Newbie Juha's Avatar
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    Any kind of sound signal that can be considered intentional seems to provoke a 50/50 response around here. Half the time people get annoyed or scared, half the time appreciative or neutral. And I don't have an AirZound, I don't yell etc. Just a gentle "bling" from the bell.

    If, OTOH, I click my brake levers and people pick it up, they are never annoyed. I guess they're busy being proud of their superior hearing, what with being able to spot an approaching cyclist with seemingly no help and all. Go figure.

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  6. #6
    Year-round cyclist
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    There are many design issues with bike paths, but silence is definitely an asset. I think any deliberate noise-making isn't welcome.

    A mirror is a useful tool to watch traffic behind you. If you don't want to have one, turn around often enough to watch traffic, and look out before you move left or right, jus as you do (or should do) before you change lanes when driving a car.

    And when you pass, leave enough room to pass safely.

    P.S. If everyone travelling on a bike path were to ring, why would one want to ride there ? The road would be quieter!
    Michel Gagnon
    Montréal (Québec, Canada)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Michel Gagnon
    There are many design issues with bike paths, but silence is definitely an asset. I think any deliberate noise-making isn't welcome.

    A mirror is a useful tool to watch traffic behind you. If you don't want to have one, turn around often enough to watch traffic, and look out before you move left or right, jus as you do (or should do) before you change lanes when driving a car.

    And when you pass, leave enough room to pass safely.

    P.S. If everyone travelling on a bike path were to ring, why would one want to ride there ? The road would be quieter!
    Heartily agree on using a mirror. Heartily disagree on the bell: After you have a runner turn around without looking, directly in front of you, you'll decide pretty quick that you don't give a @!{^ about whether they like being warned, or not. Sure, the bike path is noisier than it was, but still quieter than the road, and doesn't have any H2's or Ford Excrement's breathing down your neck.

    As to bells versus a verbal warning, I've found that half the time you say "on your left", the people turn or move to the left--not what you wanted. Whistling is in some respects more polite than a bell, but too often my lips are too dry to whistle, and sometimes women don't seem to like being whistled at. So I always check the mirror, move as far left as possible, ring the bell gently if I'm going to pass close enough that they could turn into me, ring the bell harder if I have to pass so close that they can step left into me, and ring the bell even harder and multiple times if they're blocking the path. Occasionally I'll come up on a pedestrian too fast to be able to let go of the brakes and ring the bell, e.g. going down a hill and then around a curve, and suddenly someone steps into the path, so then I'll have to call out "on your left".

    I've been using a bell like this for about ten years, and I'd say that maybe five times I've had idiots yell at me for ringing the bell at them.

  8. #8
    aspiring dirtbag commuter max-a-mill's Avatar
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    i am from philly, so i yell "YO" (like rocky ya know; "YO, ADRIAN!")

    but only when i see a problem imminent ahead which is maybe once every two or three days. my pipes work well, so i see no need for a bell.

    i am in the anti-bell camp, but definitely see the use more on the bike path.

    i am also a mountainbiker though, and if you bring that bell into the woods and ring it at me expect to get my two cents on the matter! bells have no place in the woods.

  9. #9
    Designated Drinker Wulfheir's Avatar
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    making a sound is a legal requirement on the city pathways here. our city's utilization rate is quite high and most people expect to here a ding before they get passed. so i guess i'll just switch to yelling when the bell freezes.

    http://www.calgary.ca/cweb/gateway/g...BPath%2B%2Ehtm
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  10. #10
    The Land of Living Skies
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    It is funny how at times I feel safer on the road with the predictability of motorists (I may not like their actions but at least they are predictable) than on a bike path. I have crashed twice and both times was on a bike path and both times it was because the other parties were not observing any type of ediquette. Incidently both times I did not have a bell. Now I ring the bell like a mad man when I see potential for an accident. I don't care how cranky people get, I am reducing the risk to myself...it is a purely selfish act.

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    I remember when I just got into cycling I read a post where someone said they never ride on bike paths, just roads. I thought they were mental. Not anymore. Bike paths are brutal. I ring my bell, people walk into me. I shout "on your left" and people walk into me.

    Most joggers I encounter have headphones on. Roller-bladers, well you folks know what they are like.

    I stick to the roads as much as I can. In winter, the paths aren't busy so isn't too bad. I ride a MTB so I usually leave the path to pass someone. If I can't, I slow down a lot and just pass them - no bell or anything (don't wanna spook them) - but it's very slow. I came barreling up behind an eighty year old on a path, rang my bell a lot and loud and I nearly clocked her - I don't need that!

  12. #12
    cab horn
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    Bells are almost completely useless in Toronto. Unless you have a truck horn.

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