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AG: Aunt Granny's Advice, or How to become an elderly cyclist:



 
 
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  #891  
Old January 28th 19, 12:07 AM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
Frank Krygowski[_4_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 7,137
Default AG: Lit Crit wanted

On 1/27/2019 6:53 PM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Mon, 28 Jan 2019 06:16:36 +0700, John B. Slocomb
wrote:

On Sun, 27 Jan 2019 11:48:54 -0500, Frank Krygowski
wrote:

On 1/27/2019 12:36 AM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Sat, 26 Jan 2019 20:54:54 -0500, Joy Beeson
wrote:


I'm particularly interested in words that I can leave out without
impairing clarity. This essay is way too long.

It also needs a definite exit line.

Any ideas for change-of-topic marks with a chance of surviving a
typesetter who regularly ends stories in the middle of a sentence, and
sometimes in the middle of a word?

The essay is intended as a letter to an American newspaper, so I
haven't mentioned driving on the left.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

If you are thinking about riding a bike, you need to learn the rules
of the road.

If you have a car-driver's license, you already know the rules: bikes
follow the same rules as cars because two vehicles operating by
different rules on the same facility insure conflict.

Where the rules for different classes of vehicles differ, there will
be signs saying "no non-motorized vehicles", "no trucks except for
local delivery", "slow vehicles keep right", and so forth.

Most differences between cars and bikes are statistical. For example,
cars are noisy, so bike riders need to make noise on purpose much more
often than a car driver needs to sound the horn. You should never
overtake a pedestrian or another bike rider without letting him know
that you are there. A simple "Hi!" will do, but I often choose to
give more information -- when I saw a photographer leaning over the
edge of the boardwalk, for example, I said "I am passing behind you."

#

There are a few rules that are different for bikes.

A car driver can make hand signals only through the driver's-side
window, so he signals a right turn by bending his left elbow at a
right angle and pointing up. When I give this signal on a bike,
people wave back. A bike rider signals a right turn by pointing with
his right arm, a mirror image of the left-turn signal. Bike riders
also have the option of signalling "I intend to go straight" -- just
point straight ahead with either arm. It is a good idea, after giving
this signal, to raise your arm a little so that people behind you can
see it.


The law gives bicycles explicit permission to operate on a usable
shoulder -- most of the reasons for banning traffic on shoulders don't
apply to a vehicle that the operator can pick up and walk off with.

But note the word "usable". You don't have permission to ride on
shoulders that are intermittent, narrow, covered with sharp or
slippery debris, or otherwise not safe to ride on.

Also note that when you ride on a shoulder, you are not in the roadway
and therefore have sole responsibility for avoiding collisions.
Whenever you approach an intersection, you should suspect every driver
of intending to turn into the side road, and you should expect every
driver on the side road to creep forward for a better view of the
traffic lanes.


Another difference between cars and bikes is lane position. Most
vehicles have no option but "in the middle of your share", but
bicycles can also ride in the left wheel track or the right wheel
track, and on some rare occasions, your share isn't the entire lane.
Lane position is a complex subject best studied under the supervision
of an experienced cyclist, but I've posted an over-simplified
explanation at http://www.wlweather.net/PAGEJOY/CENT2018/LANE.HTM",
and you can read chapter 2 of "Street Smarts" at
http://www.bikexprt.com/streetsmarts/usa/index.htm.

An even-more simplified version: when in doubt, ride in the middle of
the lane. Always leave yourself room to dodge to the right. Never
weave in and out of traffic. Give a wide berth to things that can
knock you off your bike, such as parked cars, curbs, lengthwise
grooves, and drop-offs. When riding in a bike lane, allow a good four
feet between your left elbow and the motor lane. Always signal your
intentions.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

Comments on the Web page are also solicited.

I'm seriously considering breaking the letter at the # and ending
"There are a few rules that are different for bikes, but I've taken up
too much space already, so I will write a another letter."

This is a desperate measure, because the local nutcases write
multi-part letters.

The first letter would be e-mailed with the subject line, perhaps
repeated in the body to increase the odds it will be used as a
headline, "Time to start dusting off the bike"

The second with the subject line "Three ways bikes are not like cars".


I read both the above and your reference
http://www.wlweather.net/PAGEJOY/CENT2018/LANE.HTM"

and while I haven't ridden in the U.S. in many years and maybe
conditions are different there, but here one is quite often (I might
almost say "normally") riding on streets or roads where the vehicle
traffic is traveling at 100 KPH or faster and the bicycle is traveling
at, perhaps, 1/4 or 1/3 of that speed. In that instance "taking the
lane" can be hazardous unless done carefully as veering out in front
of a vehicle traveling at speed assumes that the vehicle can stop and
if the assumption is incorrect then what?

Nobody with any sense recommends veering out suddenly in front of a fast
vehicle. The relevant books, pamphlets, classes, videos and websites all
make it clear (or should make it clear) that you check behind you,
signal, and negotiate if necessary when you need to move left.


Signaling before you move into a lane(s) where all the traffic is
traveling at speeds of 60+mph is a good move?


Or perhaps more to the point, moving into a lane where all the traffic
is traveling at three, or more, times the speed of the bicycle is a
good idea, signal or no signal.


I wondered if that's what you really meant.

So it leads to the usual question: 10 foot lane. 9 foot truck. No
shoulder. Traffic using the next lane, whether same-direction or
oncoming. What are you going to do?

I've been in that situation countless times. I've taken the lane by
moving leftward in plenty of time. The trucks, cars, whatever have never
run me over. In almost all cases, they've slowed and waited until they
could pass in the next lane.

And please don't say "Never ride that road." If that were the
requirement, I could never get out of my neighborhood.

--
- Frank Krygowski
Ads
  #892  
Old January 28th 19, 12:54 AM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
Joy Beeson
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,292
Default AG: Lit Crit wanted

On Mon, 28 Jan 2019 06:16:36 +0700, John B. Slocomb
wrote:

Signaling before you move into a lane(s) where all the traffic is
traveling at speeds of 60+mph is a good move?


The letter is for the Warsaw Time-Union. The limit on most streets in
Warsaw is 30 mph -- mine is 25 -- and the majority of the streets are
used only by the people who live on them.

Detroit Street, on the other hand . . .

You have pointed out that I'm talking to people who don't already know
that you need to signal, look behind, and so forth. whinge I was
hoping you could help me make it *shorter*! /whinge


--
Joy Beeson
joy beeson at comcast dot net
http://wlweather.net/PAGEJOY/


  #893  
Old January 28th 19, 01:09 AM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
John B. Slocomb
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 805
Default AG: Lit Crit wanted

On Sun, 27 Jan 2019 19:07:46 -0500, Frank Krygowski
wrote:

On 1/27/2019 6:53 PM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Mon, 28 Jan 2019 06:16:36 +0700, John B. Slocomb
wrote:

On Sun, 27 Jan 2019 11:48:54 -0500, Frank Krygowski
wrote:

On 1/27/2019 12:36 AM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Sat, 26 Jan 2019 20:54:54 -0500, Joy Beeson
wrote:


I'm particularly interested in words that I can leave out without
impairing clarity. This essay is way too long.

It also needs a definite exit line.

Any ideas for change-of-topic marks with a chance of surviving a
typesetter who regularly ends stories in the middle of a sentence, and
sometimes in the middle of a word?

The essay is intended as a letter to an American newspaper, so I
haven't mentioned driving on the left.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

If you are thinking about riding a bike, you need to learn the rules
of the road.

If you have a car-driver's license, you already know the rules: bikes
follow the same rules as cars because two vehicles operating by
different rules on the same facility insure conflict.

Where the rules for different classes of vehicles differ, there will
be signs saying "no non-motorized vehicles", "no trucks except for
local delivery", "slow vehicles keep right", and so forth.

Most differences between cars and bikes are statistical. For example,
cars are noisy, so bike riders need to make noise on purpose much more
often than a car driver needs to sound the horn. You should never
overtake a pedestrian or another bike rider without letting him know
that you are there. A simple "Hi!" will do, but I often choose to
give more information -- when I saw a photographer leaning over the
edge of the boardwalk, for example, I said "I am passing behind you."

#

There are a few rules that are different for bikes.

A car driver can make hand signals only through the driver's-side
window, so he signals a right turn by bending his left elbow at a
right angle and pointing up. When I give this signal on a bike,
people wave back. A bike rider signals a right turn by pointing with
his right arm, a mirror image of the left-turn signal. Bike riders
also have the option of signalling "I intend to go straight" -- just
point straight ahead with either arm. It is a good idea, after giving
this signal, to raise your arm a little so that people behind you can
see it.


The law gives bicycles explicit permission to operate on a usable
shoulder -- most of the reasons for banning traffic on shoulders don't
apply to a vehicle that the operator can pick up and walk off with.

But note the word "usable". You don't have permission to ride on
shoulders that are intermittent, narrow, covered with sharp or
slippery debris, or otherwise not safe to ride on.

Also note that when you ride on a shoulder, you are not in the roadway
and therefore have sole responsibility for avoiding collisions.
Whenever you approach an intersection, you should suspect every driver
of intending to turn into the side road, and you should expect every
driver on the side road to creep forward for a better view of the
traffic lanes.


Another difference between cars and bikes is lane position. Most
vehicles have no option but "in the middle of your share", but
bicycles can also ride in the left wheel track or the right wheel
track, and on some rare occasions, your share isn't the entire lane.
Lane position is a complex subject best studied under the supervision
of an experienced cyclist, but I've posted an over-simplified
explanation at http://www.wlweather.net/PAGEJOY/CENT2018/LANE.HTM",
and you can read chapter 2 of "Street Smarts" at
http://www.bikexprt.com/streetsmarts/usa/index.htm.

An even-more simplified version: when in doubt, ride in the middle of
the lane. Always leave yourself room to dodge to the right. Never
weave in and out of traffic. Give a wide berth to things that can
knock you off your bike, such as parked cars, curbs, lengthwise
grooves, and drop-offs. When riding in a bike lane, allow a good four
feet between your left elbow and the motor lane. Always signal your
intentions.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

Comments on the Web page are also solicited.

I'm seriously considering breaking the letter at the # and ending
"There are a few rules that are different for bikes, but I've taken up
too much space already, so I will write a another letter."

This is a desperate measure, because the local nutcases write
multi-part letters.

The first letter would be e-mailed with the subject line, perhaps
repeated in the body to increase the odds it will be used as a
headline, "Time to start dusting off the bike"

The second with the subject line "Three ways bikes are not like cars".


I read both the above and your reference
http://www.wlweather.net/PAGEJOY/CENT2018/LANE.HTM"

and while I haven't ridden in the U.S. in many years and maybe
conditions are different there, but here one is quite often (I might
almost say "normally") riding on streets or roads where the vehicle
traffic is traveling at 100 KPH or faster and the bicycle is traveling
at, perhaps, 1/4 or 1/3 of that speed. In that instance "taking the
lane" can be hazardous unless done carefully as veering out in front
of a vehicle traveling at speed assumes that the vehicle can stop and
if the assumption is incorrect then what?

Nobody with any sense recommends veering out suddenly in front of a fast
vehicle. The relevant books, pamphlets, classes, videos and websites all
make it clear (or should make it clear) that you check behind you,
signal, and negotiate if necessary when you need to move left.

Signaling before you move into a lane(s) where all the traffic is
traveling at speeds of 60+mph is a good move?


Or perhaps more to the point, moving into a lane where all the traffic
is traveling at three, or more, times the speed of the bicycle is a
good idea, signal or no signal.


I wondered if that's what you really meant.

So it leads to the usual question: 10 foot lane. 9 foot truck. No
shoulder. Traffic using the next lane, whether same-direction or
oncoming. What are you going to do?

I've been in that situation countless times. I've taken the lane by
moving leftward in plenty of time. The trucks, cars, whatever have never
run me over. In almost all cases, they've slowed and waited until they
could pass in the next lane.

And please don't say "Never ride that road." If that were the
requirement, I could never get out of my neighborhood.


I can only assume that you ride on very different roads then I do. For
example, last Tuesday we drove from Bangkok to Pak Chung, a small town
about 200 km N.E. of Bangkok. Disregarding the first 20 or so km of
toll road we were on modern 6 lane highways where traffic was in
excess of 100 kph and the distance between vehicles was, perhaps 25 -
50 meters, all the way.

At 100 kph the time to travel 50 meters is a bit less then two
seconds. "taken the lane by moving leftward in plenty of time" would
require nearly super sonic speed.

As for "don't ride that road", over the past 50 years or so Thailand
has been improving their roads and today about the only way to travel
between cities is on this type of road.


Cheers,
John B.


  #894  
Old January 28th 19, 01:25 AM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
John B. Slocomb
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 805
Default AG: Lit Crit wanted

On Sun, 27 Jan 2019 19:54:14 -0500, Joy Beeson
wrote:

On Mon, 28 Jan 2019 06:16:36 +0700, John B. Slocomb
wrote:

Signaling before you move into a lane(s) where all the traffic is
traveling at speeds of 60+mph is a good move?


The letter is for the Warsaw Time-Union. The limit on most streets in
Warsaw is 30 mph -- mine is 25 -- and the majority of the streets are
used only by the people who live on them.

Detroit Street, on the other hand . . .

You have pointed out that I'm talking to people who don't already know
that you need to signal, look behind, and so forth. whinge I was
hoping you could help me make it *shorter*! /whinge


I was trying to point out that "taking the lane", as some have termed
it, cannot be a universal solution as it ignores speeds.

As for making it shorter... I suggest that it takes a certain number
of words to clearly explain any act and editing may well make it
shorter but at the expense of clarity.


Cheers,
John B.


  #895  
Old January 28th 19, 04:17 AM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
Frank Krygowski[_4_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 7,137
Default AG: Lit Crit wanted

On 1/27/2019 8:09 PM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Sun, 27 Jan 2019 19:07:46 -0500, Frank Krygowski
wrote:

On 1/27/2019 6:53 PM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Mon, 28 Jan 2019 06:16:36 +0700, John B. Slocomb
wrote:

On Sun, 27 Jan 2019 11:48:54 -0500, Frank Krygowski
wrote:

On 1/27/2019 12:36 AM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Sat, 26 Jan 2019 20:54:54 -0500, Joy Beeson
wrote:


I'm particularly interested in words that I can leave out without
impairing clarity. This essay is way too long.

It also needs a definite exit line.

Any ideas for change-of-topic marks with a chance of surviving a
typesetter who regularly ends stories in the middle of a sentence, and
sometimes in the middle of a word?

The essay is intended as a letter to an American newspaper, so I
haven't mentioned driving on the left.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

If you are thinking about riding a bike, you need to learn the rules
of the road.

If you have a car-driver's license, you already know the rules: bikes
follow the same rules as cars because two vehicles operating by
different rules on the same facility insure conflict.

Where the rules for different classes of vehicles differ, there will
be signs saying "no non-motorized vehicles", "no trucks except for
local delivery", "slow vehicles keep right", and so forth.

Most differences between cars and bikes are statistical. For example,
cars are noisy, so bike riders need to make noise on purpose much more
often than a car driver needs to sound the horn. You should never
overtake a pedestrian or another bike rider without letting him know
that you are there. A simple "Hi!" will do, but I often choose to
give more information -- when I saw a photographer leaning over the
edge of the boardwalk, for example, I said "I am passing behind you."

#

There are a few rules that are different for bikes.

A car driver can make hand signals only through the driver's-side
window, so he signals a right turn by bending his left elbow at a
right angle and pointing up. When I give this signal on a bike,
people wave back. A bike rider signals a right turn by pointing with
his right arm, a mirror image of the left-turn signal. Bike riders
also have the option of signalling "I intend to go straight" -- just
point straight ahead with either arm. It is a good idea, after giving
this signal, to raise your arm a little so that people behind you can
see it.


The law gives bicycles explicit permission to operate on a usable
shoulder -- most of the reasons for banning traffic on shoulders don't
apply to a vehicle that the operator can pick up and walk off with.

But note the word "usable". You don't have permission to ride on
shoulders that are intermittent, narrow, covered with sharp or
slippery debris, or otherwise not safe to ride on.

Also note that when you ride on a shoulder, you are not in the roadway
and therefore have sole responsibility for avoiding collisions.
Whenever you approach an intersection, you should suspect every driver
of intending to turn into the side road, and you should expect every
driver on the side road to creep forward for a better view of the
traffic lanes.


Another difference between cars and bikes is lane position. Most
vehicles have no option but "in the middle of your share", but
bicycles can also ride in the left wheel track or the right wheel
track, and on some rare occasions, your share isn't the entire lane.
Lane position is a complex subject best studied under the supervision
of an experienced cyclist, but I've posted an over-simplified
explanation at http://www.wlweather.net/PAGEJOY/CENT2018/LANE.HTM",
and you can read chapter 2 of "Street Smarts" at
http://www.bikexprt.com/streetsmarts/usa/index.htm.

An even-more simplified version: when in doubt, ride in the middle of
the lane. Always leave yourself room to dodge to the right. Never
weave in and out of traffic. Give a wide berth to things that can
knock you off your bike, such as parked cars, curbs, lengthwise
grooves, and drop-offs. When riding in a bike lane, allow a good four
feet between your left elbow and the motor lane. Always signal your
intentions.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

Comments on the Web page are also solicited.

I'm seriously considering breaking the letter at the # and ending
"There are a few rules that are different for bikes, but I've taken up
too much space already, so I will write a another letter."

This is a desperate measure, because the local nutcases write
multi-part letters.

The first letter would be e-mailed with the subject line, perhaps
repeated in the body to increase the odds it will be used as a
headline, "Time to start dusting off the bike"

The second with the subject line "Three ways bikes are not like cars".


I read both the above and your reference
http://www.wlweather.net/PAGEJOY/CENT2018/LANE.HTM"

and while I haven't ridden in the U.S. in many years and maybe
conditions are different there, but here one is quite often (I might
almost say "normally") riding on streets or roads where the vehicle
traffic is traveling at 100 KPH or faster and the bicycle is traveling
at, perhaps, 1/4 or 1/3 of that speed. In that instance "taking the
lane" can be hazardous unless done carefully as veering out in front
of a vehicle traveling at speed assumes that the vehicle can stop and
if the assumption is incorrect then what?

Nobody with any sense recommends veering out suddenly in front of a fast
vehicle. The relevant books, pamphlets, classes, videos and websites all
make it clear (or should make it clear) that you check behind you,
signal, and negotiate if necessary when you need to move left.

Signaling before you move into a lane(s) where all the traffic is
traveling at speeds of 60+mph is a good move?


Or perhaps more to the point, moving into a lane where all the traffic
is traveling at three, or more, times the speed of the bicycle is a
good idea, signal or no signal.


I wondered if that's what you really meant.

So it leads to the usual question: 10 foot lane. 9 foot truck. No
shoulder. Traffic using the next lane, whether same-direction or
oncoming. What are you going to do?

I've been in that situation countless times. I've taken the lane by
moving leftward in plenty of time. The trucks, cars, whatever have never
run me over. In almost all cases, they've slowed and waited until they
could pass in the next lane.

And please don't say "Never ride that road." If that were the
requirement, I could never get out of my neighborhood.


I can only assume that you ride on very different roads then I do. For
example, last Tuesday we drove from Bangkok to Pak Chung, a small town
about 200 km N.E. of Bangkok. Disregarding the first 20 or so km of
toll road we were on modern 6 lane highways where traffic was in
excess of 100 kph and the distance between vehicles was, perhaps 25 -
50 meters, all the way.

At 100 kph the time to travel 50 meters is a bit less then two
seconds. "taken the lane by moving leftward in plenty of time" would
require nearly super sonic speed.

As for "don't ride that road", over the past 50 years or so Thailand
has been improving their roads and today about the only way to travel
between cities is on this type of road.


Then I assume you're riding on the shoulder, right?

Roads I ride on:

Residential streets 18 feet wide or less, of course. And residential
collectors, a bit wider, but with more traffic, 35 mph limits and curbs.
Both of those are "take the lane" streets for sure.

Present or former country lanes, about the same width but with no
shoulders. Again, taking the lane is a must.

Minor state routes. Sometimes wider, but rarely wide enough to safely
share. Speed limits from 45 to 55 mph. Take the lane unless it's got a
really nice shoulder.

Very frequently, a four lane suburban stroad with 30,000 to 40,000 cars
per day. 12 foot lanes. That's a tough one, because it's sort of
sharable with a tiny car (Fiat 500, VW Beetle) if the driver is careful.
But anyone else will be passing too close. Speed limit 40 mph. Decades
ago, I tried to share it a lot. Now I almost always ride at lane center.

Old city arterials, four lanes, probably 10 feet wide. Those can be ugly
at quitting time. I ride them if I have to, but I prefer the parallel
residential collectors.

Oh yeah, one street that's one lane each way plus a center
bi-directional turning lane. This is through an old but still active
commercial area. Again, too narrow to share. Motorists use the turning
lane to pass. It may be illegal, but nobody would ever care or complain.

Finally, some old industrial roads that once carried tons of traffic,
but the steel mills closed and the traffic is gone. Some of those
actually have lanes about 15 feet wide. Those I easily share.

In the past, there have been a couple times I got onto really hellish
roads and could not get off - for example, one parallel to a major
river. It had very high traffic, four narrow lanes, no shoulders,
everybody in a bad mood and a real hurry, and terrible pavement. I did
get off of it as soon as I could, but what did I do until I could leave
it? I rode at lane center. Drivers were displeased, but anything else
would have been suicidal.

--
- Frank Krygowski
  #896  
Old January 28th 19, 08:21 AM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
John B. Slocomb
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 805
Default AG: Lit Crit wanted

On Sun, 27 Jan 2019 23:17:31 -0500, Frank Krygowski
wrote:

On 1/27/2019 8:09 PM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Sun, 27 Jan 2019 19:07:46 -0500, Frank Krygowski
wrote:

On 1/27/2019 6:53 PM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Mon, 28 Jan 2019 06:16:36 +0700, John B. Slocomb
wrote:

On Sun, 27 Jan 2019 11:48:54 -0500, Frank Krygowski
wrote:

On 1/27/2019 12:36 AM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Sat, 26 Jan 2019 20:54:54 -0500, Joy Beeson
wrote:


I'm particularly interested in words that I can leave out without
impairing clarity. This essay is way too long.

It also needs a definite exit line.

Any ideas for change-of-topic marks with a chance of surviving a
typesetter who regularly ends stories in the middle of a sentence, and
sometimes in the middle of a word?

The essay is intended as a letter to an American newspaper, so I
haven't mentioned driving on the left.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

If you are thinking about riding a bike, you need to learn the rules
of the road.

If you have a car-driver's license, you already know the rules: bikes
follow the same rules as cars because two vehicles operating by
different rules on the same facility insure conflict.

Where the rules for different classes of vehicles differ, there will
be signs saying "no non-motorized vehicles", "no trucks except for
local delivery", "slow vehicles keep right", and so forth.

Most differences between cars and bikes are statistical. For example,
cars are noisy, so bike riders need to make noise on purpose much more
often than a car driver needs to sound the horn. You should never
overtake a pedestrian or another bike rider without letting him know
that you are there. A simple "Hi!" will do, but I often choose to
give more information -- when I saw a photographer leaning over the
edge of the boardwalk, for example, I said "I am passing behind you."

#

There are a few rules that are different for bikes.

A car driver can make hand signals only through the driver's-side
window, so he signals a right turn by bending his left elbow at a
right angle and pointing up. When I give this signal on a bike,
people wave back. A bike rider signals a right turn by pointing with
his right arm, a mirror image of the left-turn signal. Bike riders
also have the option of signalling "I intend to go straight" -- just
point straight ahead with either arm. It is a good idea, after giving
this signal, to raise your arm a little so that people behind you can
see it.


The law gives bicycles explicit permission to operate on a usable
shoulder -- most of the reasons for banning traffic on shoulders don't
apply to a vehicle that the operator can pick up and walk off with.

But note the word "usable". You don't have permission to ride on
shoulders that are intermittent, narrow, covered with sharp or
slippery debris, or otherwise not safe to ride on.

Also note that when you ride on a shoulder, you are not in the roadway
and therefore have sole responsibility for avoiding collisions.
Whenever you approach an intersection, you should suspect every driver
of intending to turn into the side road, and you should expect every
driver on the side road to creep forward for a better view of the
traffic lanes.


Another difference between cars and bikes is lane position. Most
vehicles have no option but "in the middle of your share", but
bicycles can also ride in the left wheel track or the right wheel
track, and on some rare occasions, your share isn't the entire lane.
Lane position is a complex subject best studied under the supervision
of an experienced cyclist, but I've posted an over-simplified
explanation at http://www.wlweather.net/PAGEJOY/CENT2018/LANE.HTM",
and you can read chapter 2 of "Street Smarts" at
http://www.bikexprt.com/streetsmarts/usa/index.htm.

An even-more simplified version: when in doubt, ride in the middle of
the lane. Always leave yourself room to dodge to the right. Never
weave in and out of traffic. Give a wide berth to things that can
knock you off your bike, such as parked cars, curbs, lengthwise
grooves, and drop-offs. When riding in a bike lane, allow a good four
feet between your left elbow and the motor lane. Always signal your
intentions.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

Comments on the Web page are also solicited.

I'm seriously considering breaking the letter at the # and ending
"There are a few rules that are different for bikes, but I've taken up
too much space already, so I will write a another letter."

This is a desperate measure, because the local nutcases write
multi-part letters.

The first letter would be e-mailed with the subject line, perhaps
repeated in the body to increase the odds it will be used as a
headline, "Time to start dusting off the bike"

The second with the subject line "Three ways bikes are not like cars".


I read both the above and your reference
http://www.wlweather.net/PAGEJOY/CENT2018/LANE.HTM"

and while I haven't ridden in the U.S. in many years and maybe
conditions are different there, but here one is quite often (I might
almost say "normally") riding on streets or roads where the vehicle
traffic is traveling at 100 KPH or faster and the bicycle is traveling
at, perhaps, 1/4 or 1/3 of that speed. In that instance "taking the
lane" can be hazardous unless done carefully as veering out in front
of a vehicle traveling at speed assumes that the vehicle can stop and
if the assumption is incorrect then what?

Nobody with any sense recommends veering out suddenly in front of a fast
vehicle. The relevant books, pamphlets, classes, videos and websites all
make it clear (or should make it clear) that you check behind you,
signal, and negotiate if necessary when you need to move left.

Signaling before you move into a lane(s) where all the traffic is
traveling at speeds of 60+mph is a good move?


Or perhaps more to the point, moving into a lane where all the traffic
is traveling at three, or more, times the speed of the bicycle is a
good idea, signal or no signal.

I wondered if that's what you really meant.

So it leads to the usual question: 10 foot lane. 9 foot truck. No
shoulder. Traffic using the next lane, whether same-direction or
oncoming. What are you going to do?

I've been in that situation countless times. I've taken the lane by
moving leftward in plenty of time. The trucks, cars, whatever have never
run me over. In almost all cases, they've slowed and waited until they
could pass in the next lane.

And please don't say "Never ride that road." If that were the
requirement, I could never get out of my neighborhood.


I can only assume that you ride on very different roads then I do. For
example, last Tuesday we drove from Bangkok to Pak Chung, a small town
about 200 km N.E. of Bangkok. Disregarding the first 20 or so km of
toll road we were on modern 6 lane highways where traffic was in
excess of 100 kph and the distance between vehicles was, perhaps 25 -
50 meters, all the way.

At 100 kph the time to travel 50 meters is a bit less then two
seconds. "taken the lane by moving leftward in plenty of time" would
require nearly super sonic speed.

As for "don't ride that road", over the past 50 years or so Thailand
has been improving their roads and today about the only way to travel
between cities is on this type of road.


Then I assume you're riding on the shoulder, right?

Roads I ride on:

Residential streets 18 feet wide or less, of course. And residential
collectors, a bit wider, but with more traffic, 35 mph limits and curbs.
Both of those are "take the lane" streets for sure.

Present or former country lanes, about the same width but with no
shoulders. Again, taking the lane is a must.

Minor state routes. Sometimes wider, but rarely wide enough to safely
share. Speed limits from 45 to 55 mph. Take the lane unless it's got a
really nice shoulder.

Very frequently, a four lane suburban stroad with 30,000 to 40,000 cars
per day. 12 foot lanes. That's a tough one, because it's sort of
sharable with a tiny car (Fiat 500, VW Beetle) if the driver is careful.
But anyone else will be passing too close. Speed limit 40 mph. Decades
ago, I tried to share it a lot. Now I almost always ride at lane center.

Old city arterials, four lanes, probably 10 feet wide. Those can be ugly
at quitting time. I ride them if I have to, but I prefer the parallel
residential collectors.

Oh yeah, one street that's one lane each way plus a center
bi-directional turning lane. This is through an old but still active
commercial area. Again, too narrow to share. Motorists use the turning
lane to pass. It may be illegal, but nobody would ever care or complain.

Finally, some old industrial roads that once carried tons of traffic,
but the steel mills closed and the traffic is gone. Some of those
actually have lanes about 15 feet wide. Those I easily share.

In the past, there have been a couple times I got onto really hellish
roads and could not get off - for example, one parallel to a major
river. It had very high traffic, four narrow lanes, no shoulders,
everybody in a bad mood and a real hurry, and terrible pavement. I did
get off of it as soon as I could, but what did I do until I could leave
it? I rode at lane center. Drivers were displeased, but anything else
would have been suicidal.


The law here states that bicycles and motorcycles - meaning small 100
- 125cc motorcycles - must ride on the side of the road. The meaning
is that bicycles and motorcycles should not impede faster traffic.

While of course road vary from bad to excellent the larger main
thoroughfares, say 4 lane or greater will likely have a solid media
between the two directions and will usually have a wide paved shoulder
which functions as a breakdown or bus lane. see
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=65znLohWfz8
This is a bit "out in the country" in S. Thailand

Generally speaking riding along is not a major problem, it is when you
want to turn right that trouble arises. If there is a stop light then
you can ride up to the front of the line and get over to the right so
you can scoot across inside the turning radius of any cars that happen
to be turning.
See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cplj8yd_gOE
When there is no stop light then you just have to take care. I usually
stop, get off the bike and wait for a break in the traffic and then
run across pushing the bike. Sometimes it is a long wait.
The motorcyclists you see wearing an orange "vest" are licensed
motorcycle taxies.

Since you have done some touring see
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z9rcTESJ35c

:-)


Cheers,
John B.


  #897  
Old January 29th 19, 06:48 PM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
Joy Beeson
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,292
Default AG: Lit Crit wanted

On Mon, 28 Jan 2019 08:25:51 +0700, John B. Slocomb
wrote:

As for making it shorter... I suggest that it takes a certain number
of words to clearly explain any act and editing may well make it
shorter but at the expense of clarity.


My writing is usually much clearer after I delete not-to-the-point
remarks.

One has to beware of making an explanation more clear than the thing
being explained. "Always cling desperately to the ragged edge of the
pavement no matter what." is much clearer than an explanation of how
to decide when to ride where.

https://blog.fabrics-store.com/2015/...l-olive-dress/

While letting this post cool a bit, I read a sewing tutorial.

Down in the comments someone asked what was meant by adding an inch at
each seam -- and was totally ignored. (How much work is it to write,
instead of "one inch at each seam", "one inch, divided among the
seams"?)

Later on, someone commented that enlarging a pattern by adding to the
side seams wouldn't work, and would make the armholes huge. The
response? "The reason we have decided to use this method for size
grading is because not everyone who read this blog might be as
competent a sewer as others, so we try to simplify the pattern so the
seams are all mostly very straight and easy to follow, and suggesting
this method for grading, so no difficult instructions might deter any
new sewers away. However you are correct as referring to not all the
seams can be enlarged simply by just adding an inch."

At least the person confused by the "clear" instructions won't get
killed while following them. |An ugly dress that looks as though you
had cut a neck hole in a burlap sack, yes. They even chose a
burlap-color fabric to make the model.| (note not-to-the-point remark
in |pipes|.)

And all they needed was a picture of the pattern pieces with lines
drawn where you cut and spread. (Back when I bought my patterns, they
came with these lines printed on.) A few paragraphs of explanation
would be helpful (if written by anyone not on the staff at
Fabrics-store.com), but not essential. *That* "tutorial" should have
been the first one they published.

--
Joy Beeson
joy beeson at comcast dot net
http://wlweather.net/PAGEJOY/
  #898  
Old January 29th 19, 07:05 PM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
Frank Krygowski[_4_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 7,137
Default AG: Lit Crit wanted

On 1/28/2019 3:21 AM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Sun, 27 Jan 2019 23:17:31 -0500, Frank Krygowski
wrote:

On 1/27/2019 8:09 PM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Sun, 27 Jan 2019 19:07:46 -0500, Frank Krygowski
wrote:

On 1/27/2019 6:53 PM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Mon, 28 Jan 2019 06:16:36 +0700, John B. Slocomb
wrote:

On Sun, 27 Jan 2019 11:48:54 -0500, Frank Krygowski
wrote:

On 1/27/2019 12:36 AM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Sat, 26 Jan 2019 20:54:54 -0500, Joy Beeson
wrote:


I'm particularly interested in words that I can leave out without
impairing clarity. This essay is way too long.

It also needs a definite exit line.

Any ideas for change-of-topic marks with a chance of surviving a
typesetter who regularly ends stories in the middle of a sentence, and
sometimes in the middle of a word?

The essay is intended as a letter to an American newspaper, so I
haven't mentioned driving on the left.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

If you are thinking about riding a bike, you need to learn the rules
of the road.

If you have a car-driver's license, you already know the rules: bikes
follow the same rules as cars because two vehicles operating by
different rules on the same facility insure conflict.

Where the rules for different classes of vehicles differ, there will
be signs saying "no non-motorized vehicles", "no trucks except for
local delivery", "slow vehicles keep right", and so forth.

Most differences between cars and bikes are statistical. For example,
cars are noisy, so bike riders need to make noise on purpose much more
often than a car driver needs to sound the horn. You should never
overtake a pedestrian or another bike rider without letting him know
that you are there. A simple "Hi!" will do, but I often choose to
give more information -- when I saw a photographer leaning over the
edge of the boardwalk, for example, I said "I am passing behind you."

#

There are a few rules that are different for bikes.

A car driver can make hand signals only through the driver's-side
window, so he signals a right turn by bending his left elbow at a
right angle and pointing up. When I give this signal on a bike,
people wave back. A bike rider signals a right turn by pointing with
his right arm, a mirror image of the left-turn signal. Bike riders
also have the option of signalling "I intend to go straight" -- just
point straight ahead with either arm. It is a good idea, after giving
this signal, to raise your arm a little so that people behind you can
see it.


The law gives bicycles explicit permission to operate on a usable
shoulder -- most of the reasons for banning traffic on shoulders don't
apply to a vehicle that the operator can pick up and walk off with.

But note the word "usable". You don't have permission to ride on
shoulders that are intermittent, narrow, covered with sharp or
slippery debris, or otherwise not safe to ride on.

Also note that when you ride on a shoulder, you are not in the roadway
and therefore have sole responsibility for avoiding collisions.
Whenever you approach an intersection, you should suspect every driver
of intending to turn into the side road, and you should expect every
driver on the side road to creep forward for a better view of the
traffic lanes.


Another difference between cars and bikes is lane position. Most
vehicles have no option but "in the middle of your share", but
bicycles can also ride in the left wheel track or the right wheel
track, and on some rare occasions, your share isn't the entire lane.
Lane position is a complex subject best studied under the supervision
of an experienced cyclist, but I've posted an over-simplified
explanation at http://www.wlweather.net/PAGEJOY/CENT2018/LANE.HTM",
and you can read chapter 2 of "Street Smarts" at
http://www.bikexprt.com/streetsmarts/usa/index.htm.

An even-more simplified version: when in doubt, ride in the middle of
the lane. Always leave yourself room to dodge to the right. Never
weave in and out of traffic. Give a wide berth to things that can
knock you off your bike, such as parked cars, curbs, lengthwise
grooves, and drop-offs. When riding in a bike lane, allow a good four
feet between your left elbow and the motor lane. Always signal your
intentions.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

Comments on the Web page are also solicited.

I'm seriously considering breaking the letter at the # and ending
"There are a few rules that are different for bikes, but I've taken up
too much space already, so I will write a another letter."

This is a desperate measure, because the local nutcases write
multi-part letters.

The first letter would be e-mailed with the subject line, perhaps
repeated in the body to increase the odds it will be used as a
headline, "Time to start dusting off the bike"

The second with the subject line "Three ways bikes are not like cars".


I read both the above and your reference
http://www.wlweather.net/PAGEJOY/CENT2018/LANE.HTM"

and while I haven't ridden in the U.S. in many years and maybe
conditions are different there, but here one is quite often (I might
almost say "normally") riding on streets or roads where the vehicle
traffic is traveling at 100 KPH or faster and the bicycle is traveling
at, perhaps, 1/4 or 1/3 of that speed. In that instance "taking the
lane" can be hazardous unless done carefully as veering out in front
of a vehicle traveling at speed assumes that the vehicle can stop and
if the assumption is incorrect then what?

Nobody with any sense recommends veering out suddenly in front of a fast
vehicle. The relevant books, pamphlets, classes, videos and websites all
make it clear (or should make it clear) that you check behind you,
signal, and negotiate if necessary when you need to move left.

Signaling before you move into a lane(s) where all the traffic is
traveling at speeds of 60+mph is a good move?


Or perhaps more to the point, moving into a lane where all the traffic
is traveling at three, or more, times the speed of the bicycle is a
good idea, signal or no signal.

I wondered if that's what you really meant.

So it leads to the usual question: 10 foot lane. 9 foot truck. No
shoulder. Traffic using the next lane, whether same-direction or
oncoming. What are you going to do?

I've been in that situation countless times. I've taken the lane by
moving leftward in plenty of time. The trucks, cars, whatever have never
run me over. In almost all cases, they've slowed and waited until they
could pass in the next lane.

And please don't say "Never ride that road." If that were the
requirement, I could never get out of my neighborhood.

I can only assume that you ride on very different roads then I do. For
example, last Tuesday we drove from Bangkok to Pak Chung, a small town
about 200 km N.E. of Bangkok. Disregarding the first 20 or so km of
toll road we were on modern 6 lane highways where traffic was in
excess of 100 kph and the distance between vehicles was, perhaps 25 -
50 meters, all the way.

At 100 kph the time to travel 50 meters is a bit less then two
seconds. "taken the lane by moving leftward in plenty of time" would
require nearly super sonic speed.

As for "don't ride that road", over the past 50 years or so Thailand
has been improving their roads and today about the only way to travel
between cities is on this type of road.


Then I assume you're riding on the shoulder, right?

Roads I ride on:

Residential streets 18 feet wide or less, of course. And residential
collectors, a bit wider, but with more traffic, 35 mph limits and curbs.
Both of those are "take the lane" streets for sure.

Present or former country lanes, about the same width but with no
shoulders. Again, taking the lane is a must.

Minor state routes. Sometimes wider, but rarely wide enough to safely
share. Speed limits from 45 to 55 mph. Take the lane unless it's got a
really nice shoulder.

Very frequently, a four lane suburban stroad with 30,000 to 40,000 cars
per day. 12 foot lanes. That's a tough one, because it's sort of
sharable with a tiny car (Fiat 500, VW Beetle) if the driver is careful.
But anyone else will be passing too close. Speed limit 40 mph. Decades
ago, I tried to share it a lot. Now I almost always ride at lane center.

Old city arterials, four lanes, probably 10 feet wide. Those can be ugly
at quitting time. I ride them if I have to, but I prefer the parallel
residential collectors.

Oh yeah, one street that's one lane each way plus a center
bi-directional turning lane. This is through an old but still active
commercial area. Again, too narrow to share. Motorists use the turning
lane to pass. It may be illegal, but nobody would ever care or complain.

Finally, some old industrial roads that once carried tons of traffic,
but the steel mills closed and the traffic is gone. Some of those
actually have lanes about 15 feet wide. Those I easily share.

In the past, there have been a couple times I got onto really hellish
roads and could not get off - for example, one parallel to a major
river. It had very high traffic, four narrow lanes, no shoulders,
everybody in a bad mood and a real hurry, and terrible pavement. I did
get off of it as soon as I could, but what did I do until I could leave
it? I rode at lane center. Drivers were displeased, but anything else
would have been suicidal.


The law here states that bicycles and motorcycles - meaning small 100
- 125cc motorcycles - must ride on the side of the road. The meaning
is that bicycles and motorcycles should not impede faster traffic.


This is a big issue in American bike advocacy right now, at least among
those that want to ride in the present day real world, before the
utopian fantasy of completely separate bike facilities everywhere.

Traffic laws are state laws, not national laws. Almost all state laws
say something about riding "as far right as practicable." But most also
make it clear that the cyclist does have a right to the lane, and may
move left if the right is not "practicable" - as in, has potholes, drain
grates, door zones or whatever. Many states specify that the cyclist can
move left if the lane is too narrow to safely share. And many (perhaps
most) states have minimum passing clearance laws, with three feet being
the most common minimum.

Unfortunately, there are plenty of people who don't grok anything beyond
the words "as far right." Sadly, that includes a significant number of
cops and judges. But I think that situation is gradually improving. I
know one lawyer who won a very significant case regarding that cyclist
right, and generated a useful legal precedent.


While of course road vary from bad to excellent the larger main
thoroughfares, say 4 lane or greater will likely have a solid media
between the two directions and will usually have a wide paved shoulder
which functions as a breakdown or bus lane. see
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=65znLohWfz8
This is a bit "out in the country" in S. Thailand


I watched about 45 seconds worth. FWIW, I would almost certainly ride
that shoulder, assuming it's not full of gravel and glass. I take the
lane only when I judge it's needed.

Generally speaking riding along is not a major problem, it is when you
want to turn right that trouble arises. If there is a stop light then
you can ride up to the front of the line and get over to the right so
you can scoot across inside the turning radius of any cars that happen
to be turning.
See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cplj8yd_gOE


Not many bikes in that video!

I hesitate to speak about unfamiliar traffic cultures. But I've been in
congestion that bad or worse many, many times. I notice that when the
traffic clots up at the intersection, people essentially negotiate and
cooperate. That's been my experience too. It's not that nobody gets
rude. A few drivers have blared horns at me as if I were the cause of
the massive traffic jam they were stuck in. (You can't fix stupid.) But
most people are very reasonable.

Notably, in our trip to Amsterdam a few months ago, that same scene
happened at many inner city intersections, except the negotiating took
place between crowds of bicyclists, even bigger crowds of pedestrians,
and a smaller number of cars.

It's just people trying to get where they're going. If we can get that
fact into the brains of motorists, plus the fact that a motor vehicle
doesn't make you king or queen, it should all work out.

--
- Frank Krygowski
  #899  
Old January 29th 19, 11:16 PM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
John B. Slocomb
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 805
Default AG: Lit Crit wanted

On Tue, 29 Jan 2019 13:48:40 -0500, Joy Beeson
wrote:

On Mon, 28 Jan 2019 08:25:51 +0700, John B. Slocomb
wrote:

As for making it shorter... I suggest that it takes a certain number
of words to clearly explain any act and editing may well make it
shorter but at the expense of clarity.


My writing is usually much clearer after I delete not-to-the-point
remarks.

One has to beware of making an explanation more clear than the thing
being explained. "Always cling desperately to the ragged edge of the
pavement no matter what." is much clearer than an explanation of how
to decide when to ride where.

I think that there is a difference between making a clear explanation
of the fact or action and making an overly detailed and complex
description. One also has to take the audience into consideration.

For example one might say, "hold the nail with one hand and hit it on
the head", which seems perfectly clear to anyone that knows what a
nail is and what one used to hit it with but might well be a bit
obscure to others.

Or even an instruction to, "first scale the fish" :-)



https://blog.fabrics-store.com/2015/...l-olive-dress/

While letting this post cool a bit, I read a sewing tutorial.

Down in the comments someone asked what was meant by adding an inch at
each seam -- and was totally ignored. (How much work is it to write,
instead of "one inch at each seam", "one inch, divided among the
seams"?)


As an example of what I wrote above I would admit that the direction
"one inch divided among the seams" is a totally meaningless statement
to me.

Later on, someone commented that enlarging a pattern by adding to the
side seams wouldn't work, and would make the armholes huge. The
response? "The reason we have decided to use this method for size
grading is because not everyone who read this blog might be as
competent a sewer as others, so we try to simplify the pattern so the
seams are all mostly very straight and easy to follow, and suggesting
this method for grading, so no difficult instructions might deter any
new sewers away. However you are correct as referring to not all the
seams can be enlarged simply by just adding an inch."

At least the person confused by the "clear" instructions won't get
killed while following them. |An ugly dress that looks as though you
had cut a neck hole in a burlap sack, yes. They even chose a
burlap-color fabric to make the model.| (note not-to-the-point remark
in |pipes|.)

And all they needed was a picture of the pattern pieces with lines
drawn where you cut and spread. (Back when I bought my patterns, they
came with these lines printed on.) A few paragraphs of explanation
would be helpful (if written by anyone not on the staff at
Fabrics-store.com), but not essential. *That* "tutorial" should have
been the first one they published.



Cheers,
John B.


  #900  
Old January 30th 19, 12:00 AM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
John B. Slocomb
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 805
Default AG: Lit Crit wanted

On Tue, 29 Jan 2019 14:05:11 -0500, Frank Krygowski
wrote:

On 1/28/2019 3:21 AM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Sun, 27 Jan 2019 23:17:31 -0500, Frank Krygowski
wrote:

On 1/27/2019 8:09 PM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Sun, 27 Jan 2019 19:07:46 -0500, Frank Krygowski
wrote:

On 1/27/2019 6:53 PM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Mon, 28 Jan 2019 06:16:36 +0700, John B. Slocomb
wrote:

On Sun, 27 Jan 2019 11:48:54 -0500, Frank Krygowski
wrote:

On 1/27/2019 12:36 AM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Sat, 26 Jan 2019 20:54:54 -0500, Joy Beeson
wrote:


I'm particularly interested in words that I can leave out without
impairing clarity. This essay is way too long.

It also needs a definite exit line.

Any ideas for change-of-topic marks with a chance of surviving a
typesetter who regularly ends stories in the middle of a sentence, and
sometimes in the middle of a word?

The essay is intended as a letter to an American newspaper, so I
haven't mentioned driving on the left.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

If you are thinking about riding a bike, you need to learn the rules
of the road.

If you have a car-driver's license, you already know the rules: bikes
follow the same rules as cars because two vehicles operating by
different rules on the same facility insure conflict.

Where the rules for different classes of vehicles differ, there will
be signs saying "no non-motorized vehicles", "no trucks except for
local delivery", "slow vehicles keep right", and so forth.

Most differences between cars and bikes are statistical. For example,
cars are noisy, so bike riders need to make noise on purpose much more
often than a car driver needs to sound the horn. You should never
overtake a pedestrian or another bike rider without letting him know
that you are there. A simple "Hi!" will do, but I often choose to
give more information -- when I saw a photographer leaning over the
edge of the boardwalk, for example, I said "I am passing behind you."

#

There are a few rules that are different for bikes.

A car driver can make hand signals only through the driver's-side
window, so he signals a right turn by bending his left elbow at a
right angle and pointing up. When I give this signal on a bike,
people wave back. A bike rider signals a right turn by pointing with
his right arm, a mirror image of the left-turn signal. Bike riders
also have the option of signalling "I intend to go straight" -- just
point straight ahead with either arm. It is a good idea, after giving
this signal, to raise your arm a little so that people behind you can
see it.


The law gives bicycles explicit permission to operate on a usable
shoulder -- most of the reasons for banning traffic on shoulders don't
apply to a vehicle that the operator can pick up and walk off with.

But note the word "usable". You don't have permission to ride on
shoulders that are intermittent, narrow, covered with sharp or
slippery debris, or otherwise not safe to ride on.

Also note that when you ride on a shoulder, you are not in the roadway
and therefore have sole responsibility for avoiding collisions.
Whenever you approach an intersection, you should suspect every driver
of intending to turn into the side road, and you should expect every
driver on the side road to creep forward for a better view of the
traffic lanes.


Another difference between cars and bikes is lane position. Most
vehicles have no option but "in the middle of your share", but
bicycles can also ride in the left wheel track or the right wheel
track, and on some rare occasions, your share isn't the entire lane.
Lane position is a complex subject best studied under the supervision
of an experienced cyclist, but I've posted an over-simplified
explanation at http://www.wlweather.net/PAGEJOY/CENT2018/LANE.HTM",
and you can read chapter 2 of "Street Smarts" at
http://www.bikexprt.com/streetsmarts/usa/index.htm.

An even-more simplified version: when in doubt, ride in the middle of
the lane. Always leave yourself room to dodge to the right. Never
weave in and out of traffic. Give a wide berth to things that can
knock you off your bike, such as parked cars, curbs, lengthwise
grooves, and drop-offs. When riding in a bike lane, allow a good four
feet between your left elbow and the motor lane. Always signal your
intentions.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

Comments on the Web page are also solicited.

I'm seriously considering breaking the letter at the # and ending
"There are a few rules that are different for bikes, but I've taken up
too much space already, so I will write a another letter."

This is a desperate measure, because the local nutcases write
multi-part letters.

The first letter would be e-mailed with the subject line, perhaps
repeated in the body to increase the odds it will be used as a
headline, "Time to start dusting off the bike"

The second with the subject line "Three ways bikes are not like cars".


I read both the above and your reference
http://www.wlweather.net/PAGEJOY/CENT2018/LANE.HTM"

and while I haven't ridden in the U.S. in many years and maybe
conditions are different there, but here one is quite often (I might
almost say "normally") riding on streets or roads where the vehicle
traffic is traveling at 100 KPH or faster and the bicycle is traveling
at, perhaps, 1/4 or 1/3 of that speed. In that instance "taking the
lane" can be hazardous unless done carefully as veering out in front
of a vehicle traveling at speed assumes that the vehicle can stop and
if the assumption is incorrect then what?

Nobody with any sense recommends veering out suddenly in front of a fast
vehicle. The relevant books, pamphlets, classes, videos and websites all
make it clear (or should make it clear) that you check behind you,
signal, and negotiate if necessary when you need to move left.

Signaling before you move into a lane(s) where all the traffic is
traveling at speeds of 60+mph is a good move?


Or perhaps more to the point, moving into a lane where all the traffic
is traveling at three, or more, times the speed of the bicycle is a
good idea, signal or no signal.

I wondered if that's what you really meant.

So it leads to the usual question: 10 foot lane. 9 foot truck. No
shoulder. Traffic using the next lane, whether same-direction or
oncoming. What are you going to do?

I've been in that situation countless times. I've taken the lane by
moving leftward in plenty of time. The trucks, cars, whatever have never
run me over. In almost all cases, they've slowed and waited until they
could pass in the next lane.

And please don't say "Never ride that road." If that were the
requirement, I could never get out of my neighborhood.

I can only assume that you ride on very different roads then I do. For
example, last Tuesday we drove from Bangkok to Pak Chung, a small town
about 200 km N.E. of Bangkok. Disregarding the first 20 or so km of
toll road we were on modern 6 lane highways where traffic was in
excess of 100 kph and the distance between vehicles was, perhaps 25 -
50 meters, all the way.

At 100 kph the time to travel 50 meters is a bit less then two
seconds. "taken the lane by moving leftward in plenty of time" would
require nearly super sonic speed.

As for "don't ride that road", over the past 50 years or so Thailand
has been improving their roads and today about the only way to travel
between cities is on this type of road.

Then I assume you're riding on the shoulder, right?

Roads I ride on:

Residential streets 18 feet wide or less, of course. And residential
collectors, a bit wider, but with more traffic, 35 mph limits and curbs.
Both of those are "take the lane" streets for sure.

Present or former country lanes, about the same width but with no
shoulders. Again, taking the lane is a must.

Minor state routes. Sometimes wider, but rarely wide enough to safely
share. Speed limits from 45 to 55 mph. Take the lane unless it's got a
really nice shoulder.

Very frequently, a four lane suburban stroad with 30,000 to 40,000 cars
per day. 12 foot lanes. That's a tough one, because it's sort of
sharable with a tiny car (Fiat 500, VW Beetle) if the driver is careful.
But anyone else will be passing too close. Speed limit 40 mph. Decades
ago, I tried to share it a lot. Now I almost always ride at lane center.

Old city arterials, four lanes, probably 10 feet wide. Those can be ugly
at quitting time. I ride them if I have to, but I prefer the parallel
residential collectors.

Oh yeah, one street that's one lane each way plus a center
bi-directional turning lane. This is through an old but still active
commercial area. Again, too narrow to share. Motorists use the turning
lane to pass. It may be illegal, but nobody would ever care or complain.

Finally, some old industrial roads that once carried tons of traffic,
but the steel mills closed and the traffic is gone. Some of those
actually have lanes about 15 feet wide. Those I easily share.

In the past, there have been a couple times I got onto really hellish
roads and could not get off - for example, one parallel to a major
river. It had very high traffic, four narrow lanes, no shoulders,
everybody in a bad mood and a real hurry, and terrible pavement. I did
get off of it as soon as I could, but what did I do until I could leave
it? I rode at lane center. Drivers were displeased, but anything else
would have been suicidal.


The law here states that bicycles and motorcycles - meaning small 100
- 125cc motorcycles - must ride on the side of the road. The meaning
is that bicycles and motorcycles should not impede faster traffic.


This is a big issue in American bike advocacy right now, at least among
those that want to ride in the present day real world, before the
utopian fantasy of completely separate bike facilities everywhere.

Traffic laws are state laws, not national laws. Almost all state laws
say something about riding "as far right as practicable." But most also
make it clear that the cyclist does have a right to the lane, and may
move left if the right is not "practicable" - as in, has potholes, drain
grates, door zones or whatever. Many states specify that the cyclist can
move left if the lane is too narrow to safely share. And many (perhaps
most) states have minimum passing clearance laws, with three feet being
the most common minimum.


And every state that I have lived in, some ten states, has had a law
that "thou shall not impede" which is enforced to the extent that very
wide truck loads can often only be moved late at night with a police
escort.

The argument that "the cyclist can move left if the lane is too
narrow to safely share" just isn't logical in cases where motor
traffic is traveling at, say 60 - 70mph and the bicycle is traveling
at 12 - 18 mph. Particularly in dense traffic where there may be long
lines of cars traveling, say 25 - 50 yards apart. And, yes, those
conditions exist here, particularly on weekends.

As for the "famous" 3 foot rule, I find it ridicules. Can you judge
distance accurately by eye? Three feet is 36 inches and I doubt that
anyone can accurately determine the difference between a 36 inch
(legal) distance and a 35 inch (illegal) distance. Yet another
unenforceable law passed to appease a special interest group.

Unfortunately, there are plenty of people who don't grok anything beyond
the words "as far right." Sadly, that includes a significant number of
cops and judges. But I think that situation is gradually improving. I
know one lawyer who won a very significant case regarding that cyclist
right, and generated a useful legal precedent.


While of course road vary from bad to excellent the larger main
thoroughfares, say 4 lane or greater will likely have a solid media
between the two directions and will usually have a wide paved shoulder
which functions as a breakdown or bus lane. see
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=65znLohWfz8
This is a bit "out in the country" in S. Thailand


I watched about 45 seconds worth. FWIW, I would almost certainly ride
that shoulder, assuming it's not full of gravel and glass. I take the
lane only when I judge it's needed.

Generally speaking riding along is not a major problem, it is when you
want to turn right that trouble arises. If there is a stop light then
you can ride up to the front of the line and get over to the right so
you can scoot across inside the turning radius of any cars that happen
to be turning.
See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cplj8yd_gOE


Not many bikes in that video!


No, but the intent was to show normal traffic in Bangkok. And there
was one bicyclist. Down in the bottom L.H. corner (about 0:30),
pushing his/her bike :-)


I hesitate to speak about unfamiliar traffic cultures. But I've been in
congestion that bad or worse many, many times. I notice that when the
traffic clots up at the intersection, people essentially negotiate and
cooperate. That's been my experience too. It's not that nobody gets
rude. A few drivers have blared horns at me as if I were the cause of
the massive traffic jam they were stuck in. (You can't fix stupid.) But
most people are very reasonable.

Notably, in our trip to Amsterdam a few months ago, that same scene
happened at many inner city intersections, except the negotiating took
place between crowds of bicyclists, even bigger crowds of pedestrians,
and a smaller number of cars.

It's just people trying to get where they're going. If we can get that
fact into the brains of motorists, plus the fact that a motor vehicle
doesn't make you king or queen, it should all work out.


And by the same token, riding a bicycle doesn't make one king, or
queen, of the road and allow one to impede traffic moving at two,
three, or more times the speed of the bicycle (which essentially is
the point I have been arguing all along)


Cheers,
John B.


 




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