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Stuff falling off... just a rant

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Stuff falling off... just a rant

Old 03-23-12, 08:14 AM
  #1  
dcrowell
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Stuff falling off... just a rant

My cheap bike computer fell off on my morning commute today. I was taking the lane in heavy traffic and the computer disappeared under a bus. I didn't bother to go back for it.

Before I found panniers and rear racks that worked well, I dropped a pannier with a laptop in it (three times!) This happened to two different laptops. Both initially survived, but one of them died later.

I've lost several blinkies, a couple of water bottles, a coffee cup, and once my chain. It broke and unspooled into the middle of a busy intersection. I didn't go back for it either. I had just bought a new one and had it with me.

What have you lost?
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Old 03-23-12, 08:22 AM
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I once hit a pothole so deep my pannier came flying off in traffic. Luckily no one ran over it.
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Old 03-23-12, 08:23 AM
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I lost a few blinkies too, but nothing else. I never dropped panniers or anything else. I generally don't carry any gadgets on my commute.
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Old 03-23-12, 08:30 AM
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Lost a blinky (I think it was a PBSF) when it fell off my backpack and exploded on impact with the road. Water bottle when flying off the bike at speed this morning, but no traffic and it spun over to the curb so I went back for it.
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Old 03-23-12, 08:31 AM
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A rear blinkie that I'd gotten for free. I went back for it and found only the lens after 5 mins of searching

My multitool fell out once and got a bit banged up but was fine.
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Old 03-23-12, 08:41 AM
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My rear view mirror fell off of my commuter several years ago. In retrospect, it had been getting loose for a while & I never adjusted it. I was able to retrieve it.

the only other thing I lost was my old, crappy headlight right before a very steep descent on an unlit road in the dark. The light was an old Specialized one that ran on 4 AA battereis & the top of the casing flew off, then the batteries & the lamp flew out (since they were now unsecured). I spent a good 5 minutes looking for parts int he dark. I found most oft he parts, but many were broken. I usually go 40 down that hill, but I must have gone like 5 miles an hour the entire way after losing the light.
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Old 03-23-12, 08:42 AM
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This guy comes past my house early in the morning typically as I am out picking up the newspaper, we live on a hill and he comes by very fast. Last fall his helmet came off and bounced all over the road and somehow he did not notice. (he carries his helmet on the bike rather than his head) I went and retrieved it and stuck it on the fire hydrant on the corner at the bottom if the road. It spent the entire winter there, him passing it every morning. On only one occasion was I outside in time to catch his attention as he passed, but it did not work.

The helmet vanished about a month ago. Maybe it just rotted away.
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Old 03-23-12, 09:02 AM
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Wow dcrowell you've lost a lot of stuff, your route must be treacherous.

I've lost one of my PB superflashes 3 times (half of it anyway) for various reasons, I went back and found it a day or more later only because I had an idea of where it came off, usually a crash site... That thing must have nine lives.

Pannier fell off once on a curb hop, it was 100% my fault for not fully securing it properly to the rack. My Macbook Air took it like a champ.
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Old 03-23-12, 09:35 AM
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Originally Posted by modernjess View Post
I've lost one of my PB superflashes 3 times (half of it anyway)
That's what happened to me with a few lights: a half of the light unsnapped and fell off. I was able to retrieve them twice, I think and I had to put some tape around those lights to prevent that from happening.
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Old 03-23-12, 09:48 AM
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I had part of a headlight (lens and led bulbs) vibrate loose and fall off as I was riding into work one morning.
Fell into the road, bounced several times, and though I stopped to try and find it I couldn't. Prolly got smooshed under a car or something.

Fortunately I was running 2 headlights at the time.
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Old 03-23-12, 09:57 AM
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Lights and computers bouncing off are inconveniences, it really shouldn't happen. Panniers coming off can be a safety issue. There really is no excuse for using a pannier that can bounce off. Locking mount systems have been widely available for about 20 years. I used a hook and elastic system on cheapo panniers about 20 years ago but these days every bike shop stocking panniers have proper, safe versions.
People advising the use of hook and elastic should be locked up.
Even some locking mounts are dangerous. If/when the lock mechanism breaks, the hook comes off. Proper system fail in a safe mode, ie with no lock but a working hook.
\end_rant
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Old 03-23-12, 10:00 AM
  #12  
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Judging by the title of this thread, I thought I was in the 50+ forum....
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Old 03-23-12, 10:01 AM
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Originally Posted by modernjess View Post
Wow dcrowell you've lost a lot of stuff, your route must be treacherous.

I've lost one of my PB superflashes 3 times (half of it anyway) for various reasons, I went back and found it a day or more later only because I had an idea of where it came off, usually a crash site... That thing must have nine lives.

Pannier fell off once on a curb hop, it was 100% my fault for not fully securing it properly to the rack. My Macbook Air took it like a champ.
The routes fine, other than a few potholes. Today's computer issue was due to the latch the holds it in the mount being loose. It has been for a while. Apparently I bumped the computer with my body while stopping at a light. It fell off shortly after that.

The panniers falling off were due to a crappy rear rack that allowed the panniers to swing sideways into the wheel, which then launched them upward. Whee! One laptop almost got ran over, but the driver stopped in time and let me retrieve it. I've since switched rear racks.

I can see a Macbook Air being a bit sturdier with it's aluminum case and SSD. Both my laptops that fell were Thinkpads. One was a work laptop, it was not damaged, but it was also a sturdy, workstation-class machine. The other was my personal machine, and cheaper. It still worked, but it damaged the CPU fan, and eventually the machine wouldn't boot anymore.
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Old 03-23-12, 10:02 AM
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Originally Posted by frpax View Post
Judging by the title of this thread, I thought I was in the 50+ forum....
That is a frightening thought!
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Old 03-23-12, 10:10 AM
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Originally Posted by frpax View Post
Judging by the title of this thread, I thought I was in the 50+ forum....
Or a leprosy self-help forum?

I've thankfully never had anything fall off, but one time discovered that my headlight had gotten loose, and instead of pointing in front of me, had fallen down and was pointing at me instead. I didn't notice it right as it happened, though, so who knows how long I was riding around like that.

On the other hand, I've had a hubcap go flying off one of the tires of my old car when I hit a really nasty pothole. It was all scratched up to begin with, and it was on a stretch of a busy road with no shoulder and only one lane, so I couldn't pull over even if I wanted to get it. I just saw it rolling perfectly straight down the street for a while in my driver's side mirror!
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Old 03-23-12, 11:18 AM
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Duct tape and zip ties work well.
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Old 03-23-12, 11:20 AM
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I had my rear blinky fall off and explode into a dozen pieces all over a side street one day. I went back and picked up the pieces and tried to patch it al together. I needed a little help from epoxy putty to get it mounted again, but now I don't have to worry about someone stealing it off the bike while the bike is parked.







Since those pix were taken, I've fitted "proper" fenders and saddle to the bike.
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Old 03-23-12, 11:33 AM
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I lost a pannier once, but recovered it before it got damaged. I found someone's seatbag once, and was able to get it back to the owner. Which was good for him, since it had his keys, garage door opener and phone in it.

And now I remember I lost a cheap blinky once. I'm not sure exactly where, but it was somewhere along the trip home one night.

Last edited by no motor?; 03-23-12 at 03:39 PM.
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Old 03-23-12, 11:36 AM
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Oy. That's why I keep my keys and my phone in my pocket. Not the most comfortable, true, but I'm paranoid about something like that happening. Plus, I keep my phone in my pocket in case I need to grab a photo of something.
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Old 03-23-12, 11:40 AM
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Keys that fell out of my pocket count? now I keep them around my neck.
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Old 03-23-12, 11:51 AM
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Lost a rear blinky once. I also apparently did not secure a load enough and dropped it in the middle of an intersection. A big scramble to snag it all and move out of the way to get it all on the bike again (this was back when I first started commuting).
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Old 03-23-12, 12:16 PM
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Good rant. Stuff should not fall off. Big culprits:

Those taillights (PB and PDW) that clip to the little loop on the seat pack: you have to zapstrap the end of the clip so the light doesn't fall off. Yeah, I've had the cheap, free blinkies that clip on fall off. It's more a safety issue because now you don't have a blinking tail light, but you don't know it.

Light & Motion makes the worst handlebar mounts. I had a previous model that was actually intended to break off in a crash. The problem was that a hard bump would also dislodge it. Their current rubber mount for the Urban 500/300/180 is OK, except that it looks very vulnerable to breakage. You can order a spare for $10, but shipping is $15 (or $75 to Canada!). A spare should come with the unit.

Sigma computers are very reliable in the rain, but they changed their mount to a twist-on (from a slide-in) in 2003, and the computer is prone to untwisting itself, as it doesn't really lock securely. Even pushing one of the buttons the wrong way, or wiping rain off the face in the wrong direction will untwist the computer enough that it comes off; I've had it happen a couple of times. i do not like losing a bike computer, as I record daily and total annual distances off it. I would expect more from German engineers.

Luis
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Old 03-23-12, 12:27 PM
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In the past week I've had my cata strada cadence (wired) computer come loose in it's mount 3 times. Hasn't fallen off (yet), but I'll look down and notice that my mph is 0.0 and it's not recording distance travelled and slide it back into place. Don't know if I've taken it off too many times and have now worn down the mount or what, but it's a pain when my whole ride doesn't get measured.
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Old 03-23-12, 12:32 PM
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Blinkie, pedal spring, bar end plugs, cyclocomputer, water bottle, saddle bag (though caught before it fell), Shimano SPD-R pedal spring, Speedplay pedal body, rear derailleur, & derailleur
cable stop/cap.

Oh, do myself, cleat screws and Oakley M Frame nose guards count?
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Old 03-23-12, 01:21 PM
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losing stuff? Let's see...

Lost the important 1/2 of a PB Superflash once, had another completely jump ship and then watched as the jerk in the SUV behind me slow down, and crush it under his wheel (His comment "At least it wasn't you"). I've had a couple of improperly mounted (not locked in place) headlights fall off. My PB 5LED Beamer w/mount came off on more than one occasion (PDW's mount is compatible with the PB light, and doesn't have the lever that was coming undone). On several occasions I've had my rear pannier or bucket get bounced off. Lost the battery to my Down Low Glow when it came off mid-ride. On more than one occasion lost the NR bottle batteries that were used for my Classic Plus systems, ultimately that caused the damage that allowed water in and destroyed both batteries*.

*when I purchased the NR TriNewt, I made sure to protect it's battery from theft and damage by making my own waterbottle battery mount.

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