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KJP

Cycling Advocacy

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What I've never understood is how the guys in the big pick ups think their truck makes them tough and manly and the bike is weak and girly.  But I have to actually use muscle to move my bike and you only need to press a pedal down to make a truck move.  Just something I always thought was weird.

 

That's a good point. Biking 50 miles burns like 1800 calories. Driving 50 miles - maybe 18? Haha.

 

If it's not muscle-work in a gym or on a sportsball field, it doesn't count, though.

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Incidentally, it's amazing how much more comfortable biking is in actual bicycling clothes is as opposed to regular athletic clothes or just regular shorts and shirt. 

 

The size and fit of a particular bicycle is probably the #1 most important thing for comfort, but clothes are probably just as important.  Any time you bike on the Loveland trail you inevitably see people out there with ill-fitting bikes and ill-fitting clothes.  Then they're sore and cursing bicycling after a 5-mile ride. 

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That's a good point. Biking 50 miles burns like 1800 calories. Driving 50 miles - maybe 18? Haha.

 

 

When you go out for a really long ride, you switch over to burning just fat somewhere between hour 2 and hour 4.  The feeling is really obvious.  You get like a 10 minute warning and then your energy level takes a nice dive.  If you stop to get any kind of food, even fast food, you get an incredible energy boost.  Bike for 10 hours then drink a coke and you'll know how much energy is in a can of that stuff! 

 

Each year I seem to mess up on food on a long ride.  In 2015 got to the Little River Tavern in Oregonia about an hour before they opened.  So I rode and extra 30 minutes north, turned around, and got to the place that much more depleted.  I ate like an entire chicken, a hamburger, a salad, and about 4 sides.  By the time I biked 35~ miles back to the parking lot in Newtown I was almost hungry again.  That ride was about 80 miles total.  When I was younger and in better shape I could do that distance a lot faster and with less food. 

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A nice meat-and-potatoes cross-country bike ride story:

 

http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2017/08/03/trip-lifetime-delayed-years/KiMiCcnWCgnmXK5ojcQnfO/story.html

 

The technical detail that is striking is that he only had one flat tire in 3,000+ miles.  That's definitely a testament to the durability of modern touring tires, although I'm not sure which ones he had. 

 

 

 

 

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The technical detail that is striking is that he only had one flat tire in 3,000+ miles.  That's definitely a testament to the durability of modern touring tires, although I'm not sure which ones he had.

I use Conti Gatorskins, and although they're slightly heavier (for weight weenies) and a pain to get on most rims, they are very durable. I rarely get flats anymore as long as I pay attention to wear. It's so nice.

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I had one of those on my city bike for a few years.  I never got a flat but it was a total pain to get off the wheel when I decided to buy two new matching tires for that bike. 

 

The racing tires like Continental 4000s have a much better ride quality than any tire I've had with sidewall protection.  But I threw in the towel on my road bike when I got a blowout from a tiny twig going about 40mph downhill in the Smoky Mountains.  If you're never going to enter a race (like me) there is really no reason to ride with racing tires other than bragging rights on Strava or a similar app. 

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Mayor Peduto tweeted: @billpeduto  Sep 19

Back in the 90s, Pittsburgh was rated one of the worst 10 cities - today we just joined one of the 10 best.

 

Pittsburgh just joined the top ten cities for bike commuting! So what's going right? We break it down in our blog: http://bit.ly/2wtEJYO

 

DKGA1gvXkAEYq4i.jpg:large


"Fascism begins the moment a ruling class, fearing the people may use their political democracy to gain economic democracy, begins to destroy political democracy in order to retain its power of exploitation and special privilege." -- Tommy Douglas, Scottish-born Canadian Baptist minister and the seventh Premier of Saskatchewan

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You just gotta make sure you've got gears if you're journeying outside the basin. When I lived in Cincinnati all I had was a BMX despite being in my late 20s. I rode to Ault Park from Oakley one time and it was murder. I don't know why I didn't get something with gears, though if you go over 30mph on a BMX down a hill you feel like you're breaking the speed of sound since pedaling a BMX is pointless at that speed.

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^What I like about Dayton is that in the few places where there actually are hills (like going from UD to Oakwood), there's always a rails-to-trail that is basically flat to get you to where you're going. So it's easy to get up the hill at a shallow grade and then you can just fly down a different steep hill on the way back.


“To an Ohio resident - wherever he lives - some other part of his state seems unreal.”

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This video is ridiculous.  The guy who made it obviously intentionally caused problems in traffic to mess with pedestrians and vehicular traffic.  I called him out in the comments and he got upset. 

 

However, the video is useful for illustrating just how chaotic things often are in bike lanes.  They simply are not the panacea people want to believe they are...as is obvious in this video, pedestrians and other bikers are a much bigger problem than cars:

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Reporter spoke to LeBron James about the power of bicycles.

 

And it got *dorky.* Cannondale, Huffy, Mongoose, commuting, Critical Mass, whether or not he's tried clipless pedals, hybrids, spandex...

 

LeBron James: The Bicycle Interview. For @WSJ:

 

https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-lebron-james-interview-about-bicycles-1533561787


"Fascism begins the moment a ruling class, fearing the people may use their political democracy to gain economic democracy, begins to destroy political democracy in order to retain its power of exploitation and special privilege." -- Tommy Douglas, Scottish-born Canadian Baptist minister and the seventh Premier of Saskatchewan

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The NY Times profiled the American bike touring couple that was recenlty run over and killed by ISIS:

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/07/world/asia/islamic-state-tajikistan-bike-attack.html

 

“You read the papers and you’re led to believe that the world is a big, scary place,” Mr. Austin wrote. “People, the narrative goes, are not to be trusted. People are bad. People are evil....I don’t buy it. Evil is a make-believe concept we’ve invented to deal with the complexities of fellow humans holding values and beliefs and perspectives different than our own …"

 

And sadly, what most people will remember about his life was not how right he was, but how wrong he was.

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I'm not trying to heap on him, but imagine if he had survived but his girlfriend hadn't.  Would he have been able to maintain those beliefs?  I definitely agree with him, but accept that random bad things happen. 

 

Also, I'm not a fan of "adventure" tourism for the simple fact that medical care for routine problems, let alone exotic ones, can't be counted upon.  Luckily we speak English, so there's a good chance that the staff will have someone who can speak to the injured party and whoever they were with, but that's just one problem of many. 

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I'm not trying to heap on him, but imagine if he had survived but his girlfriend hadn't.  Would he have been able to maintain those beliefs?  I definitely agree with him, but accept that random bad things happen. 

 

Also, I'm not a fan of "adventure" tourism for the simple fact that medical care for routine problems, let alone exotic ones, can't be counted upon.  Luckily we speak English, so there's a good chance that the staff will have someone who can speak to the injured party and whoever they were with, but that's just one problem of many. 

 

It may be because it's more memorable and shocking, but it sure seems to me like these things end with the cyclist being seriously injured or killed by a car.

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Lance goes down hard:

https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/cycling/2018/08/09/lance-armstrong-goes-hospital-shares-bloody-selfie-after-bike-crash/949891002/

 

Getting back to my previous comment...even in the mountain west, you can get to a good hospital.  We've got helicopters, working phones, etc.  Good luck getting treatment for a fall in Central Asia. 

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One of Queen Elizabeth's doctors killed in a cycling accident in London on Cycle to Work Day:

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/queen-elizabeth-iis-personal-doctor-killed-in-cycle-crash/ar-BBM0zGW?li=BBnbfcL&ocid=LENDHP

 

No details on the crash but the truck driver was not arrested, meaning the doctor might have been a novice cyclist and he was at fault. 

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No helmets, no problem: how the Dutch created a casual biking culture https://t.co/NDAc5gezax via @voxdotcom


"Fascism begins the moment a ruling class, fearing the people may use their political democracy to gain economic democracy, begins to destroy political democracy in order to retain its power of exploitation and special privilege." -- Tommy Douglas, Scottish-born Canadian Baptist minister and the seventh Premier of Saskatchewan

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On 8/28/2018 at 10:11 PM, KJP said:

No helmets, no problem: how the Dutch created a casual biking culture https://t.co/NDAc5gezax via @voxdotcom

 

Last spring I couldn't find the $140 bike helmet I had just purchased the previous fall.  I tore my house upside down. I rode without a helmet for about a month waiting and waiting for the thing to turn up.  Eventually I gave up and bought a new helmet. 

 

Then, today, December 8, I found the damn thing.  In a box with one of those green hi-viz construction site vests.  In my family room closet.

 

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I own three bikes and two went down in the past 3 or 4 days.  The first one had its front brake caliper spontaneously fall apart.  The second had about the tenth flat in the past year. 

 

I bought a new bike last year with a supposedly puncture-proof tubeless tires.  I have had one problem after another with these tires, mostly because of leaks around the rim.  This past Sunday I got a true puncture flat that the fix-a-flat failed to seal and had to walk the bike several miles back to my house. 

 

 

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It is amazing how much broken glass is all over the city.  There are also stray screws from construction sites, but mostly broken glass everywhere.  It is hard to avoid getting flats.

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I haven't noticed as much glass as just gravel and muck.  The problem with the gravel is that if it's not removed properly, it just keeps getting pushed around and won't go away on its own.  At least leaves decompose after a while. 

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8 hours ago, Jimmy Skinner said:

It is amazing how much broken glass is all over the city.  There are also stray screws from construction sites, but mostly broken glass everywhere.  It is hard to avoid getting flats.

 

Spring Grove Ave. is always really bad.  

 

If we had a large network of bike lanes then the city could justify buying a special small street sweeper just for the lanes and run that thing down each lane each day.   The labor and machine would cost $100k per year but that's nothing for a city with a general budget pushing $400 million.  

 

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I got to test-ride a super-expensive ($8,000~) electric mountain bike last week, one of these:

 

In short, the thing was incredible.  It has a super-robust suspension that makes everything super-smooth like a cruiser motorcycle.  The electric power assist kicks in automatically.  You can't just hold down a button and not peddle.  It seems to sense slopes and gives you more power if you're headed uphill. 

 

Bicycle tech keeps advancing rapidly.  If the $8,000 bike I just rode in 2019 becomes a $1,500 bike in 2029, the world is going to be a lot different in the 2030s. 

 

 

 

 

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7 hours ago, jmecklenborg said:

Bicycle tech keeps advancing rapidly.  If the $8,000 bike I just rode in 2019 becomes a $1,500 bike in 2029, the world is going to be a lot different in the 2030s. 

This is why I haven't bought an electric bike. The longer you wait, the cheaper it will be for a better bike. I'm sure it would extend the range I'm willing to go on a regular basis, but not by that much since Dayton is pretty flat. If I lived in Cincinnati, I think I'd have one already.

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I will resist electric bikes as long as possible.  My friend has one and it is in the shop a lot for repairs.  But as the technology gets, better, cheaper and more dependable, this will be the standard, for sure.

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At the $8,000 price level, you're paying the same as a new motorcycle, which is basically what one of these is, except it's a lot easier to steal. 

 

I attempted to ride an electric rideshare mini-moped in California last week.  I tried three of them but all three had mechanical problems.  Bird scooters are much simpler and I suspect less expensive contraptions.  The big difference is the tires - a scooter uses what is basically a rollerblade or rolling luggage wheel, whereas an electric mini-moped uses inflatable tires.  Those tires go flat quite easily, at least currently, since they're cheap and not filled with fix-a-flat like tubeless mountain bike tires. 

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Does anyone know what kind of security features there are for batteries on ebikes? It's an expensive component that would make me nervous to leave unattended if it couldn't be locked on. And carrying one around sounds annoying at best, especially when we're talking a $1k+ investment for the bike.

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I studied abroad in the Netherlands (Groningen, not Amsterdam).  Bike theft is incredibly rampant.  That's why even though everybody rides bikes, nobody spends more than the equivalent of a few bucks for one- it will probably get stolen, and if it does no big, you just go get another.

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22 minutes ago, X said:

I studied abroad in the Netherlands (Groningen, not Amsterdam).  Bike theft is incredibly rampant.  That's why even though everybody rides bikes, nobody spends more than the equivalent of a few bucks for one- it will probably get stolen, and if it does no big, you just go get another.

 

When you get a bike seat or other part stolen off your bike, all of the sudden you start looking at random bikes for a piece that will work on yours.  Same thing with bikes - if your whole bike is stolen, they you start looking to steal a bike.  It's a vicious cycle. 

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10 hours ago, jmecklenborg said:

 

When you get a bike seat or other part stolen off your bike, all of the sudden you start looking at random bikes for a piece that will work on yours.  Same thing with bikes - if your whole bike is stolen, they you start looking to steal a bike.  It's a vicious cycle. 

For whatever reason, people aren't very into stealing components in the Netherlands. No one ever locks up their seat, for example. Whereas in NYC anything that's not locked down is going to get stripped off.

 

But it does seem that the student mentality is somewhat similar to what you're proposing. They get their (cheap) bike stolen, and proceed to buy someone else's stolen bike off a junkie. If you're a student, you know exactly where to go to buy bikes from junkies.

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A lot of other countries are like them, though, in that most people don't use racing and stunt bikes to get around -- rather they opt for low-cost interchangeable comfort bikes.

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2 hours ago, GCrites80s said:

A lot of other countries are like them, though, in that most people don't use racing and stunt bikes to get around -- rather they opt for low-cost interchangeable comfort bikes.

 

I rode a "comfort bike" last week for the first time in a long time.  At first, yep, they're "comfortable".  You sit upright and the seat is cushy.  But the position on the bike is very inefficient and you get tired pretty quickly, even if you are an otherwise strong cyclist on other types of bikes.  Also, the more upright you sit, the more you get blown around by the wind.  The beach is where you find many of these so-called comfort bikes.  Ocean = wind.  

 

People don't realize how much their heads catch the wind.  And the more upright your seated position, the more torsional winds affect any sort of bike ride.  The lower the head, the less you are pushed around laterally by the wind.  

 

Also, the newer and more expensive bike helmets are much more aerodynamic not just in straight-ahead normal cycling, but also with sideways wind gusts.  It's one of those things that seems like hocus-pocus until you actually wear a higher-tech helmet.  

 

 

 

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