Tuesday, June 10, 2008
Saturday, June 7, 2008
Thursday, June 5, 2008
Riding against traffic
Running stoplights and signs in the presence of other vehicles (you're relying on them stopping for you to continue living)
Riding at dawn / dusk / dark with no front light and no rear reflector
Sudden left turn from right side of road
Continuing straight through the intersection from the right side of a right-turn-only lane
Riding in the median of a roadway, between the two opposing directions of traffic
Curb-hugging. No, ride in the right tire track, or in the center if there is no shoulder or bike lane
Sidewalk riding where the sidewalk is frequently cross-cut by driveways, side-streets, or it has many pedestrians
No looking back before you make a move
No eyeglasses / sunglasses, sunscreen, water
No personal ID on you
Use a rear-view mirror
Wear a reflective vest and areflective ankle bands in low-light conditions. Wear bright clothing at all times.
Use a red rear light and a red rear reflective in low-light conditions
Carry a cell phone
BICYCLE COMMUTING is a follow-up course for Road One graduates. It will be offered on 6/28/08 and is not likely to be offered again for a long time. The truth of the matter is that not many people in the area have graduated from Road One, so the target audience is tiny.
Bicycle riding on the road is just about as complex as motorcycle riding on the road. Training is absolutely needed for a safe, enjoyable experience for both types of two-wheelers. You would not consider getting on a motorcycle without training and the right license, would you?
How to find Houston area bicycle education courses: CLICK HERE
Date: Saturday, June 28, 2008, 10 am - 2 pm
Instructor: Peter Wang
Location: 851 Dairy Ashford, Houston, TX 77079
Description: For adult cyclists who wish to explore the possibility of commuting to work or school by bike. This three hour follow-up to Road I covers topics including route selection, bicycle choice, dealing with cargo and clothing, bike parking, lighting, reflection, and foul weather riding. Successful completion of Road I is a pre-requisite for this course. If you have not done Road I you will not be turned away, but you may not get the full benefit out of the course. Bring a lunch, or money to buy your own lunch at area restaurants.
To register for this course, contact:
Phone: (281) 556-0923
Well, I finally wore out my monitor Monitor pass. I took it into the shop on Monday to have its chain and chain wheels replaced as they were so worn the chain was resting on the wear indicator pins. In the meantime transferred all my commuting gear to the Sirrus hybrid.
Up until now I had not had an opportunity to really ride this bike for any length of time as it took a lot of "dialing in" on the equipment side of it; however, after a full commute I can make a few conclusions.
Compared to the Monitor Pass it's considerably lighter and I rather like the frame fit a bit better. However, I still haven't quite dialed in the ergonomics of the bike yet. This model of Sirrus has a suspension seat post, but I don't think they had 179 pounder in mind when they put it on this bike. Although I have the seatpost set at the right height compared to my road bike when it is actually loaded up with my weight it collapses about a half-inch. So before I can ride the bike again I'm going to need to adjust the seat post.
Speaking of seats, it has one of specialized's synthetic ergonomic seats. it wasn't quite as comfy as my Brooks Conquest, but surprisingly it worked quite well and it does have the advantage of tolerating the occasional thunder shower much better than natural leather. so for the time being it will remain; however, somewhere down the road I may ditch both seatpost and seat for a rigid seatpost and a Brooks Flyer.
I also had opportunity to test my planet bike Cascadia fenders. As I was getting close to home this afternoon I got caught in a small thunder shower and also hit a number of deep puddles; however, both myself and the bike stayed quite dry from splashes and splatters. Compared to the fenders I have on the monitor pass the longer mudflaps of the Cascadia's are well worth the money. I definitely have plans to get a set of Cascadia mudflaps and put one on the front fender of the monitor pass and the other on the front fender of the trike.
I'm still not too comfortable running 700c wheels on Houston's streets. Many of the expansion joints abutting the storm drains on Memorial Drive are exactly the same width as a 700C rim. I did not have the same apprehension while riding on 26 inch rims. The Monitor Pass feels a lot more tolerant of Houston's road imperfections; however, I will say this much the Sirrus hybrid did account for itself well on the rougher sections of Alabama.
It was also quite refreshing to be on a bike that was geared for the road as the Monitor Pass was always geared a little lower than I liked.
One thing I am going to change is the E3 Cycling Cyclocomputer. The speed display on it is beautiful; however, I discovered that the distance measuring capability is only accurate up to a 10th of a mile compared to a 100th of mile common on a Cateye. I also have to flail around on the buttons to get the information I'm looking for. I found it to be not very intuitive compared to a Cateye. Also, some of the finer markings washout under LED light (like distance, MPH, and ATM) which I never had that problem with Cateyes.