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Old 02-13-18, 03:02 PM   #1
Joe Bikerider
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Broke my bell

Last Friday, I swerved off my local MUP and crashed. Today, the bike and (mostly) myself are back enough to do a few laps around the court and I'm thrilled. My right eye still has a pretty good shiner and I'm not that presentable but feeling pretty good.

I just wanted to share with you'all. I'm 65 and have rarely crashed since working in the LBS and riding so many miles starting about 1969. As far as I can tell I went off the path to avoid some kids and into the grass the front tire caught on something that knocked me onto my right hip and my face. The helmet shows no marks but I'll get a new one.

Cleaning up the bike this morning I was sad to see my bell was trashed. I'm a big bell ringer and get such a kick when a little rider rings back at me as I pass. My front fender was pretty twisted but came right back into shape when I loosened and readjusted the mounting.

Love, Joe
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Old 02-13-18, 03:08 PM   #2
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Glad it was the bell that was trashed and not something more critical (like your head)! I'm really happy that I have a good loud bell when I'm on our local MUPs. There's no left?-right?-where-are-you really? confusion with a stout ringer.
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Old 02-13-18, 05:22 PM   #3
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Glad you're okay, relatively speaking. I'm a horn guy with a bugle horn mounted on the stem. I use it when there's a group, or kids, or people with dogs to give warning from farther away.
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Old 02-13-18, 05:38 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Joe Bikerider View Post
...As far as I can tell I went off the path to avoid some kids and into the grass the front tire caught on something that knocked me onto my right hip and my face...
That happened to me a couple of times my first year back in the saddle in 2015 (I hadn't ridden since the 1980s).

Most of our paved MUP is just a sidewalk, same 4' width as any narrow residential neighborhood sidewalk. Much too narrow for the intended purpose. When I'd approach the most popular part of the MUP, near the parks, I'd go around the slower moving families with kids and dogs, etc.

Usually I had no problems veering off into the grass and going around. But a couple of times I got careless, nicked the edge of the pavement and my wheel was knocked out from under me. I fell in the grass at fairly slow speed, so it was just embarrassing, no injuries.

But when something similar occurred last year at night (I misjudged a turn at a "Y" split) I fell on the pavement and busted up my ribs. That hurt, for several weeks.

I no longer go around folks. Either I slow down and wait to pass after announcing myself, or ride on the adjacent gravel trail (much wider and less used).

Mostly I just don't ride the MUP anymore. Especially in group rides. It's really not designed or suitable for anything faster than 8-10 mph, tops, and much too crowded some days in some areas. My own neighborhood streets and nearby rural routes are safer, despite the vehicle traffic. Most drivers are pretty courteous.
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Old 02-13-18, 06:50 PM   #5
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I'm truly sorry your bell was broken, and glad that you are not.
I do understand how quickly falls can happen.

I'm also very fond of having a bell, not just for the practical use, but also because the sound somehow
reminds me of being younger, kids riding around and around, just because it's fun, and happier, friendlier times.

Might as well put in a plug for my favorite bell, since I bought two more last Friday.

They're brass. "Incredibell , Brass DUET, Cloche de Velo. By Mirrycle Corporation , Boulder CO.
Besides the resonant ring, which have loved for years, I'm pleasantly surprised to see that they are made in Japan,
not China. The price keeps on going up of course. Now around $12 at local bike store.

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Old 02-14-18, 05:57 AM   #6
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OMGosh!!!! NOT THE BELL!!!!!

My 3 bells are 40+ years old. Mickey Mouse, Schwinn and American Flag. They have a light tone chime resulting in smiles and "THANK YOU" responses from other "geezers" when I ring. If anything would happen to them I would be devastated. Hope nothing happens to the new bell.....and BTW..... glad the bike and you are OK.
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Old 02-14-18, 08:10 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Bikerider View Post
...the bike and (mostly) myself are back enough to do a few laps around the court and I'm thrilled.
I'm also thrilled it was not worse.
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Old 02-14-18, 09:58 AM   #8
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Glad it was the bell that was trashed and not something more critical (like your ... )
For a second there I misread bell. Glad no serious injuries.
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Old 02-14-18, 04:32 PM   #9
Joe Bikerider
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Went out today for about an hour on the local MUP. I need that bell, my left thumb kept looking for the ringer. Handlebars were not quite straight and that bothered me but mostly the left thumb looking for the ringer. Especially when at the main MUP junction. Why does everyone from walking old ladies to crowds of MIMIL who are meeting there think hanging around in the middle of the trail is the right thing to do? Yes, there's a sign there with a map so step off an look at it. Please. Anyway great to be out again and back on the road for another long time. Thanks for all the kind comments. Joe
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Old 02-14-18, 05:28 PM   #10
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A common bike accident is to ride off the pavement and try to steer back on. If the front wheel catches on the edge of the pavement you will fall suddenly. That's how I broke my hip.
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Old 02-15-18, 06:26 AM   #11
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Time for a bell replacement. Try a new whistle. Preferably a Bobby's whistle.
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Old 02-15-18, 06:39 AM   #12
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Iron horse? That can get pretty crowded. Glad you are OK. I ride with a group out there and we've had our share of interactions.
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Old 02-15-18, 02:39 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bkentr View Post

Might as well put in a plug for my favorite bell, since I bought two more last Friday.

They're brass. "Incredibell , Brass DUET, Cloche de Velo. By Mirrycle Corporation , Boulder CO.
Besides the resonant ring, which have loved for years, I'm pleasantly surprised to see that they are made in Japan,
not China. The price keeps on going up of course. Now around $12 at local bike store.
I have Duet bells on two single bikes and we have two on our tandem.
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Old 02-16-18, 08:33 PM   #14
Joe Bikerider
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Out today. First stop our (sort of) monthly meeting with the WC traffic department head guy about excess traffic and speed on Walnut Blvd. Seems like progress may be coming, at least he makes it seem positive. Even mentioned the possibility of blocking off the road, I had suggested a 10 ton block of concrete a while ago. If there's a stop sign no one uses, then this might make them stop. Off to the PH library to get a new book. Around the loop and sat in the park for a while in beautiful sun on the way home. Very nice day. A nice sleep tonight will speed the healing on my right hip bruise. Hmm.

Last edited by Joe Bikerider; 02-16-18 at 09:46 PM.
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Old 02-16-18, 08:58 PM   #15
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It happens. Best plan is to just keep riding IMHO.

I figure as long as I'm going to ride a bike, I'm going to occasionally fall. Good news; a broken bell is a pretty good deal, as far as falls go.
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Old 02-18-18, 08:21 AM   #16
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"... I went off the path to avoid some kids ..."

Your story supports my contention that MUPs are not the safety panacea some folks tout them to be. They are great if you ride at pedestrian speeds or perhaps twice that (8-10mph), but definitely not for those of us who average close to 15mph or more. For us, a buffered on-road bike lane is arguably a safer bet.
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Old 02-18-18, 07:35 PM   #17
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My '46 Shelby came with a Donald Duck bell...I still prefer those 'rocket' piezo horns but they the connections flake out then the wires break off...

I'm a much louder horn though.
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