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Multimodal commuting, bike spots always occupied by people...

Old 07-25-15, 07:24 AM
  #1  
txcrash
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Multimodal commuting, bike spots always occupied by people...

tl/dr: need suggestions on where to put the bike when the spots to hang it are occupied.

For a little over two weeks now, I've been multi modal commuting. I catch the DCTA a train, and transfer to the DART train. Even with the hassles below, it's way better than driving 45 minutes (door to door via train/bike is about 1:30) - I get a workout in and arrive at work not stressed out and ready to go.

The only problem, persay, is that on the DART end it seems that without fail someone is sitting in the seat where bikes are supposed to hang. If there are readily available seats nearby, I'll point them out and ask if they'd be willing to move - sometimes they are, sometimes they aren't. If I don't see an available seat, I don't ask - I have no more right to that seat than they do. So more often than not, I end up in the doorway of the train, holding the bike. It becomes more of a problem when there's more bikes - the other day there were 5 - it was a heck of a cluster...

Makes it harder to read while standing and holding the bike too... I'm not interested in a folder, I'm a Clyde with diminishing proportions but with my build, my goal weight is still in Clyde territory.

I may have an idea on how I could prop the bike in a less in the way fashion in the doorway, but before I go and reinvent the wheel, I wanted to see if anyone had seen strategies on securing a bike within a train, when the spot to hang it is occupied.
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Old 07-25-15, 09:55 AM
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Old 07-25-15, 09:58 AM
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Buy a Brompton, fold it up and take it on Board with You. they take up little room .

Can You arrange an Off Peak Morning start so you dont have to all use the same Run?

in the Seattle area There are Ferries .. people bring a Ferry strap to tie their bike to a Hand rail ,while the ship is underway.
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Old 07-25-15, 10:05 AM
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Originally Posted by txcrash View Post
... without fail someone is sitting in the seat where bikes are supposed to hang.

I have no more right to that seat than they do.
IMO, that's pretty much it. They were there first, there's no other space.

Preference would be that all recognize the safety benefit of having bikes up and out of the way, instead of in your hands and blocking the exits. But, most folks simply aren't built that way. Sad, but the way it is.

Myself, when I've done the multi-modal, I've asked but not pushed. But then, on the light rail cars where I've cycled it's always been that the bike spots are hangers where there aren't seats, so the only real issue is whether a given hanger is empty or full (not whether someone's sitting in the seat beneath a hanger). Condolences, that the trains in your area are multi-use hanger/seat setups. Unfortunate.
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Old 07-25-15, 10:18 AM
  #5  
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Originally Posted by txcrash View Post
tl/dr: need suggestions on where to put the bike when the spots to hang it are occupied.

For a little over two weeks now, I've been multi modal commuting. I catch the DCTA a train, and transfer to the DART train. Even with the hassles below, it's way better than driving 45 minutes (door to door via train/bike is about 1:30) - I get a workout in and arrive at work not stressed out and ready to go.

The only problem, persay, is that on the DART end it seems that without fail someone is sitting in the seat where bikes are supposed to hang. If there are readily available seats nearby, I'll point them out and ask if they'd be willing to move - sometimes they are, sometimes they aren't. If I don't see an available seat, I don't ask - I have no more right to that seat than they do. So more often than not, I end up in the doorway of the train, holding the bike. It becomes more of a problem when there's more bikes - the other day there were 5 - it was a heck of a cluster...

Makes it harder to read while standing and holding the bike too... I'm not interested in a folder, I'm a Clyde with diminishing proportions but with my build, my goal weight is still in Clyde territory.

I may have an idea on how I could prop the bike in a less in the way fashion in the doorway, but before I go and reinvent the wheel, I wanted to see if anyone had seen strategies on securing a bike within a train, when the spot to hang it is occupied.
How far from the end of the train route are your start and end points?

It might be worthwhile looking into storing the bike at one or the other end terminals, many transit systems have bike lockers for that purpose, and doing the transit part without bike but using bike to get either from home to the station or the station to work, depending on which is closer.

Alternatively, get a second, beater/used bike and store it at the work end of the transit segment.

There's no good solution to bringing a bike on board when there is no space other than what fietsbob suggested, but you already said you don't want a folder.

What I've taken to doing is leaving for work early and leaving for home late, usually the early and late trains have fewer passengers and other bikes than at peak times.

Be aware that although you don't want a folder, not all folders are tiny wheeled bikes. A 24", 26" or 700c folding bike will take less room and will ride just like a non folding bike if you pick the right model.
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Old 07-25-15, 11:18 AM
  #6  
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Work and home are both 2 miles from closest station. Work side station has 2 bike lockers that are first come first serve, and I've never seen them empty. Work side is in an area that even a 15 dollar huffy with two flats, missing a seat, and painted pink would get stolen overnight.

I do commute off peak, leave the house at 6, at the office a touch after 7, and leave the office at 4.

It it really does come down to the consideration of other riders, and it's not that big of a deal, and probably is what it is.

While id like to hang the bike in the seat, regardless of the ahole sitting there, it's not worth wearing some pretty stainless bracelets...
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Old 07-27-15, 06:32 AM
  #7  
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Guy today was about to sit down at one of the bike spots, I asked if I could hang the bike, he responded with "this is the second time you've done this to me"... Pointed to the disabled spot and said I could have hung it there. "Well, man, if you didn't sit in the bike spot you wouldn't have this issue".

SMH.

2 spots per car (2 cars) to hang a bike, and that's where these people prefer to sit. I don't get it. (There was plenty of room in the non bike areas).

But I didn't have to hold my bike today on the way in, so all is well.
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Old 07-31-15, 12:23 PM
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Originally Posted by txcrash View Post
Guy today was about to sit down at one of the bike spots, I asked if I could hang the bike, he responded with "this is the second time you've done this to me"... Pointed to the disabled spot and said I could have hung it there. "Well, man, if you didn't sit in the bike spot you wouldn't have this issue".

SMH.

2 spots per car (2 cars) to hang a bike, and that's where these people prefer to sit. I don't get it. (There was plenty of room in the non bike areas).

But I didn't have to hold my bike today on the way in, so all is well.
Sounds like a stand up guy.
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Old 07-31-15, 12:26 PM
  #9  
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Originally Posted by jfowler85 View Post
Sounds like a stand up guy.
Yup...

He hasn't set in the bike spot since, which has been nice.
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Old 07-31-15, 12:33 PM
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have any wheel chair access busses, do they get a space?
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Old 07-31-15, 01:42 PM
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Originally Posted by txcrash View Post
Guy today was about to sit down at one of the bike spots, I asked if I could hang the bike, he responded with "this is the second time you've done this to me"...
"Hey, this is also the second time YOU've done this to ME! We're twinsies!"
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Old 07-31-15, 02:01 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
have any wheel chair access busses, do they get a space?
The trains are arranged where one door per car (2-3 cars per train on the route/time I take) has a low deck, where one side of each direction (right/left) is bike, the other is disabled. I'd drop the bike and stand in the doorway for someone in a wheelchair or limited mobility in a heartbeat.
Originally Posted by RubeRad View Post
"Hey, this is also the second time YOU've done this to ME! We're twinsies!"
Haha. Exactly.

My little conversation with him seemed to have some effect on some other riders, too - as it's seemed that the bike areas have been less sat in since that. I'm big and I'm loud, and I wasn't too much of a jackass about it.
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Old 07-31-15, 02:06 PM
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Is there a way to position your bike so the greasy chain is near their clothes? That might get them to move.
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Old 07-31-15, 02:20 PM
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that is annoying and unfortunate, especially the part where there are other seats available. why? why are people like that? what ever happened to courtesy?

when my finger was broken from a bike collision last year and splinted in a cast, i would ask for a seat on the subway to and from work. getting pushed or my finger smushed or losing my balance on the train during stops and starts was a real scare. people usually gave up their seat, but every so often i would come across someone who would not.

usually i would start asking the entire car and typically a person would eventually give up their seat.

holding a bike presents similar issues like a previous poster said. no one wants to be hurt by a bicycle if the train moves suddenly. why don't people get understand that? is there that much hatred for bicycles, people can't make a common sense comply?

i would suggest bungee cords to lock it in place somewhere if you can manage. let us know how things improve (or not)...
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Old 07-31-15, 02:31 PM
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Originally Posted by alan s View Post
Is there a way to position your bike so the greasy chain is near their clothes? That might get them to move.
No, it's really a fairly poor design. Bike goes lengthwise in such a way that with a "hostile" rider there, there would be no way to put the bike up above.

Normal DART train is set up like this, below:


There are 10 "yeild to wheels" trains in the fleet - I've been on one once so far and it was fantastic.



I carry bungee cords to prevent swinging on the other train, the denton A train, which has bikes wheel against the bottom of a seat, and only occupies one seat. A better design in many ways, though the hook scuffs wheels.





Originally Posted by snow_echo_NY View Post
that is annoying and unfortunate, especially the part where there are other seats available. why? why are people like that? what ever happened to courtesy?

when my finger was broken from a bike collision last year and splinted in a cast, i would ask for a seat on the subway to and from work. getting pushed or my finger smushed or losing my balance on the train during stops and starts was a real scare. people usually gave up their seat, but every so often i would come across someone who would not.

usually i would start asking the entire car and typically a person would eventually give up their seat.

holding a bike presents similar issues like a previous poster said. no one wants to be hurt by a bicycle if the train moves suddenly. why don't people get understand that? is there that much hatred for bicycles, people can't make a common sense comply?

i would suggest bungee cords to lock it in place somewhere if you can manage. let us know how things improve (or not)...
People are crappy sometimes, that's all there is to it. Bungee cords wouldn't work, unfortunately, because there's nowhere on the train that's long enough that I wouldn't be in the way. I've figured out a way to position the bike in the door such that it's secure, I can read, and I don't feel like I'm going to fall down, but it's a pain in the ass.
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Old 07-31-15, 02:32 PM
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All the pictures above are by others, none are mine.
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Old 07-31-15, 02:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
Hang it up. "Pardon me."
+

Originally Posted by alan s View Post
Is there a way to position your bike so the greasy chain is near their clothes? That might get them to move.
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Old 08-08-15, 04:40 PM
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How long would it take to bike the whole distance? Maybe not out of the realm of possibility?
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Old 08-08-15, 09:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Bug Shield View Post
How long would it take to bike the whole distance? Maybe not out of the realm of possibility?
Safe route to bike the whole distance is 40 miles. Safe route to avoid the train with ******baggery in effect is 15 miles (plus 2 on home side)

When it's under 100 and clear, and I don't have pressing home matters, I do the 15 mile route and enjoy it. I'll do the 40 eventually but obviously that's not practical by any means for every day. At the end of 2016 a multimodal trail is supposed to be complete that'd cut the whole distance to closer to 30.

Its a 27 mile drive.

I've learned to control the morning side, and have learned stops enough (right side vs left side stops) that I'm able to comfortably stand in the doorway with my bike. It ain't right, but no sense getting angry over things I can't change.

For those that are curious, work side is near 183/regal in Dallas, tx, home side is 2 miles south of medpark station in Denton, tx.
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Old 08-10-15, 04:07 AM
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Montague makes full size folding bikes. What makes them idea is they fit in a bag and the rear derailleur does not touch the ground when folded. You can probably to the same thing with a regular bike but it would have to be a single speed with quick releases so the rear derailleur doesn’t get crushed in the bag. Once the bike is in the bag, it can be tossed to a corner of the train and people are less afraid to stand next to it. Nashbar used to sell a cheap full size bike cover.
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Old 08-10-15, 10:30 PM
  #21  
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Around my neck of the woods, there's a bike rack on the front of the bus... as in on the outside, front of the bus. Holds 2 bikes.
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Old 08-11-15, 04:16 AM
  #22  
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Originally Posted by mr geeker View Post
Around my neck of the woods, there's a bike rack on the front of the bus... as in on the outside, front of the bus. Holds 2 bikes.
Yup, busses here have the same. Speed, stop schedules, and height of trains from the ground makes that impossible for trains, so bikes go on the inside.
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