Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 03-11-18, 10:29 AM
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Chuck Naill
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True Cyclist

Because of my experiences watching bike commuter's in my city, I now think of you all who use bikes as transportation as the "true cyclists". Cheers to all commuters.
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Old 03-11-18, 11:13 AM
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...but does this mean that there are 'false' cyclists also? And who might they be?
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Old 03-11-18, 11:14 AM
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Ok, I drive sometimes. Does that make me "Untrue". LOL
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Old 03-11-18, 11:28 AM
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Originally Posted by mcours2006 View Post
...but does this mean that there are 'false' cyclists also? And who might they be?
Holden Caulfield wants to know
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Old 03-11-18, 11:30 AM
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Never read Catcher, @Darth Lefty , so...
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Old 03-11-18, 03:27 PM
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Old 03-11-18, 03:35 PM
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Originally Posted by mcours2006 View Post
...but does this mean that there are 'false' cyclists also? And who might they be?
Anyone who rides a battery power motorized bike.
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Old 03-11-18, 03:42 PM
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Originally Posted by alan s View Post
Anyone who rides a battery power motorized bike.
Whooomp! There it is!!
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Old 03-11-18, 03:46 PM
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Originally Posted by mcours2006 View Post
...but does this mean that there are 'false' cyclists also? And who might they be?
Yep...

The Watopia Cyclists.
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Old 03-11-18, 06:24 PM
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Originally Posted by mcours2006 View Post
Never read Catcher, @Darth Lefty , so...
You're not missing anything
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Old 03-12-18, 03:38 AM
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Originally Posted by mcours2006 View Post
...but does this mean that there are 'false' cyclists also? And who might they be?


What I had in mind is not that some are false.


Commuters use the bicycle for transportation, it's true purpose. You can commute on any type of bike available. You can wear anything you have. You don't have to camp or stay in a hotel. You don't have to ride fast or for a personal record. Commuting can be anything you like. This is what I've observed locally.


I am not a commuter, just making observations locally.
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Old 03-12-18, 06:40 AM
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I think this is an interesting distinction between the bike as a tool vs the bike as a toy. There's a fine line and many bikes and their riders can do both, perhaps even in the same ride.

When I bike to work, I often allow a few extra minutes to take the scenic route and get some additional miles in (tool and toy). When I bike home, I usually have a list of to-dos waiting so I just get home (tool only). Occasionally I fit in a fun weekend ride (toy only). All this is on the same bike.
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Old 03-12-18, 06:56 AM
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Originally Posted by mcours2006 View Post
...but does this mean that there are 'false' cyclists also? And who might they be?
The people who drive their cars to Soul Cycle.
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Old 03-12-18, 07:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Chuck Naill View Post
What I had in mind is not that some are false.


Commuters use the bicycle for transportation, it's true purpose. You can commute on any type of bike available. You can wear anything you have. You don't have to camp or stay in a hotel. You don't have to ride fast or for a personal record. Commuting can be anything you like. This is what I've observed locally.
.
I think we have to be careful not to label ourselves, least of all with names that seem to elevate us from everyone else who do not do what we do. Bicycles have evolved to be so many other things over the years than just transportation. And I'm not sure that when the bike was first invented it was meant as a transport device anyway. I picture the inventor thinking, whoa, how cool is it that I can balance myself on two wheels! To me I just like seeing bikes and seeing people riding them, whether it's a large group of roadies, the kid down the street riding up and down the sidewalk, the teenagers at the skate park doing tricks on their BMXs, or the older gentleman carrying groceries on plastic bags hanging from the handlebar. It never fails to make me smile.
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Old 03-12-18, 10:11 AM
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I'm lucky I get to enjoy my commutes on bike. Delivery bike people have hard lives which I don't envy. We can save the badass labels for them.
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Old 03-12-18, 10:30 AM
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Originally Posted by mcours2006 View Post
...but does this mean that there are 'false' cyclists also? And who might they be?
Anyone without gears and brakes.
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Old 03-12-18, 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Abe_Froman View Post
Anyone without gears and brakes.
I don’t hold it against someone who cannot afford such luxuries.
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Old 03-12-18, 12:00 PM
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Originally Posted by alan s View Post
I don’t hold it against someone who cannot afford such luxuries.
No gears no problem. No gears OR brakes and I hold it against them.

It's just stupid. And increasingly common.
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Old 03-12-18, 03:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Abe_Froman View Post
No gears no problem. No gears OR brakes and I hold it against them.

It's just stupid. And increasingly common.
Don't forget those ultra narrow "handlebars" that put their hands withing an inch of the stem on either side. All in an attempt to look cool... and, BTW, it's a stupid look anyway.
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Old 03-12-18, 03:06 PM
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Originally Posted by robertorolfo View Post
Don't forget those ultra narrow "handlebars" that put their hands withing an inch of the stem on either side. All in an attempt to look cool... and, BTW, it's a stupid look anyway.
And those people who insist on using "drop bars", but never actually ride in the drops?

I wouldn't worry about little things if a person can learn to ride their bike safely.
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Old 03-12-18, 03:18 PM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
And those people who insist on using "drop bars", but never actually ride in the drops?

I wouldn't worry about little things if a person can learn to ride their bike safely.
Not sure nonsense like this is super safe in an urban setting. At least he has brakes, which plenty of them do without...

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Old 03-12-18, 03:34 PM
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Originally Posted by robertorolfo View Post
Not sure nonsense like this is super safe in an urban setting. At least he has brakes, which plenty of them do without...

<photo>
What exactly is the nonsense here?
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Old 03-12-18, 03:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Chuck Naill View Post
Because of my experiences watching bike commuter's in my city, I now think of you all who use bikes as transportation as the "true cyclists". Cheers to all commuters.
Originally Posted by Papa Tom View Post
Just about every thread in every bicycling forum eventually ends up being a pissing contest over who is a real bicyclist, what is a real bicycle, etc.

This article from Bicycle Times, while not the final word, does a good job at opening up the conversation as to WHY we need to be so critical of each other...Opinion: Plenty of pie for all
In my reply to a thread on the Living Car Free Forum, “Do you really enjoy riding a bike?,” I posted my Cyclist qualifications
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
I describe my riding experience similarly, as a cycling lifestyle (of 40 years). I once listed as my credentials: a carbon fiber bike, year-round cycle-commuting, a cross-country tour, and a serious car-bike accident...
Back in 2015 was this thread on Fifty-Plus,that further subdivided these class distinctions, with my contributions, "Bike Riding vs Cycling."
Originally Posted by Viking55803 View Post
…While moving along I took a break from the sensations to daydream a bit. I was thinking about how the way most folks refer to cycling – riding a bike or biking – are just inadequate words to describe how I think or feel about what I am doing.

Riding a bike seems to be more about getting from here to there, while cycling seems to be about being on the bike. It doesn't really matter where I go, how far I go, or how long it takes me as it does about the experience itself.

Of course, the cliche' comes to mind: it's not about the destination, but he journey, but sometimes cliche's are apt, and I think cycling embodies that in a way few other activities do.
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
…So in considering your post, my first thought was I think I see the distinction you are drawing, but then thought it seems to hint a bit of elitism…I am a real cyclist;the others are just riding their bikes, though I presume that was not the intent.

So for example, are the subscribers who post to C&V, or Bicycle Mechanics and rave about parts and models real cyclists? Or are cycle commuters who slog through urban environments constantly on the alert for danger, real cyclists? Or Adovocacy&Safety and Living Car Free subscribers who advocate on behalf of cycling, really cyclists?

Not that this matters of course, as you said, and I’m not being argumentative; just reflecting on your thoughtful post. I would suggest a definition of a cyclist as one who claims to being a cyclist. For me I make that claim by describing that I live a cycling lifestyle. IMO this is distinctive, and a virtually “alternative” lifestyle.

But to get back to the immediate experience you described, as I understand it. I describe to myself as "becoming one with the bike." I'll leave the roadie vs Fred distinction for my previous "Fred Manifesto."
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
… Sometime after that thread ended, I thought about this seemingly trivial distinction that makes me think a rider is a real cyclist. I watch the way they pedal.

Without being judgemental about it, a cyclist has a fluid rotary pedaling motion, whereas I thinkbike riderwhen I see someone pedaling in a piston-like fashion.

Now since pedaling is the foundation of bike riding, I think that style and form makes the distinction. Of course then, while an E-bike rider is a “bike rider” they are not cyclists. No moral or “snobbish” judgement here, but a more "objective" one, FWIW.
Originally Posted by mcours2006 View Post
...but does this mean that there are 'false' cyclists also? And who might they be?
Originally Posted by Chuck Naill View Post
What I had in mind is not that some are false.

Commuters use the bicycle for transportation, it's true purpose. You can commute on any type of bike available. You can wear anything you have. You don't have to camp or stay in a hotel. You don't have to ride fast or for a personal record.

Commuting can be anything you like. This is what I've observed locally.

I am not a commuter, just making observations locally..
Originally Posted by alan s View Post
Anyone who rides a battery power motorized bike.
Originally Posted by mcours2006 View Post
Whooomp! There it is!!


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Old 03-12-18, 04:21 PM
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Originally Posted by mcours2006 View Post
I think we have to be careful not to label ourselves, least of all with names that seem to elevate us from everyone else who do not do what we do. Bicycles have evolved to be so many other things over the years than just transportation. And I'm not sure that when the bike was first invented it was meant as a transport device anyway. I picture the inventor thinking, whoa, how cool is it that I can balance myself on two wheels! To me I just like seeing bikes and seeing people riding them, whether it's a large group of roadies, the kid down the street riding up and down the sidewalk, the teenagers at the skate park doing tricks on their BMXs, or the older gentleman carrying groceries on plastic bags hanging from the handlebar. It never fails to make me smile.


There are accounts the bicycle was developed as a replacement for horse travel. Human propelled transportation seems to me the most reasonable explanation for why the bicycle developed and exactly what these commuters here are doing.


I was not attempting to label, but I have reads threads where touring must include this or that depending on your preference, and road biking has a definition that includes clothing, speed, and Strava. My point was to praise the original use of human propelled transportation by the commuter.
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Old 03-12-18, 04:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Chuck Naill View Post
There are accounts the bicycle was developed as a replacement for horse travel. Human propelled transportation seems to me the most reasonable explanation for why the bicycle developed and exactly what these commuters here are doing.


I was not attempting to label, but I have reads threads where touring must include this or that depending on your preference, and road biking has a definition that includes clothing, speed, and Strava. My point was to praise the original use of human propelled transportation by the commuter.
Good point. I also notice that bike dogmatism creeps in even among commuters, such that you'll read posts in this forum declaring that you can't be a real commuter unless your bike has fenders and racks. When in fact, any bike that gets ridden to work is by definition a commuting bike and the ethos should be "do what works for you."
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