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VideoGameVet

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Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« on: June 26, 2019, 11:55:22 PM »
I work in Los Angeles for 3 days during the week, take Amtrak (and the subway) up from the San Diego area with my folding bike.  Use the bike to get to where I'm staying, run errands etc.

Been doing that since Jan. 2018.

Back in the San Diego area I use the bike for shopping too.

Ask away.
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Villabolo

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Re: Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« Reply #1 on: August 11, 2019, 09:42:19 PM »
My choice in bikes is a three wheel recumbent. Much superior to a conventional bike. It almost rides like an automobile. You sit down in a chair, not saddle, with your legs horizontal making it much more stable and comfortable than even a conventional three wheeler. Your rear is only 20 inches from the ground adding to the stability of the bike and lower profile.

You can ride it all day without any of the aches and pain of a conventional bike. Together, with a trailer, it allows you the luxury of having up to four grocery bags (the big paper ones).

Unfortunately, it cannot fold or be compact.

In my daydreams, I imagine people in the open, grass scattered roads of a partially collapsed civilization, riding these bikes.

https://sunbicyclesnashville.com/trikes.php


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Re: Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2019, 07:21:53 AM »
I work in Los Angeles for 3 days during the week, take Amtrak (and the subway) up from the San Diego area with my folding bike.  Use the bike to get to where I'm staying, run errands etc.

Been doing that since Jan. 2018.

Back in the San Diego area I use the bike for shopping too.

Ask away.
Nice initiative!

I have some questions:

- What do you do when you get a flat tire?
- Do you wear a helmet?
- How old are you? I ask this for older readers who think they can't cycle. No need to answer ;).
- Is commuting by train and bike cheaper for you than using planes and automobiles?
- Are you bothered by smog?
- Is it safe to cycle where you are?
- Do you often meet strangers and have a nice conversation?
- Do you wear your work suit on your bike?
- Are you an urban cyclist or have you enjoyed cycling in nature?

I ask these questions mainly for other people who are considering cycling.
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Villabolo

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Re: Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« Reply #3 on: August 22, 2019, 04:01:50 PM »
I work in Los Angeles for 3 days during the week, take Amtrak (and the subway) up from the San Diego area with my folding bike.  Use the bike to get to where I'm staying, run errands etc.

Been doing that since Jan. 2018.

Back in the San Diego area I use the bike for shopping too.

Ask away.
Nice initiative!

I have some questions:

- What do you do when you get a flat tire?
- Do you wear a helmet?
- How old are you? I ask this for older readers who think they can't cycle. No need to answer ;).
- Is commuting by train and bike cheaper for you than using planes and automobiles?
- Are you bothered by smog?
- Is it safe to cycle where you are?
- Do you often meet strangers and have a nice conversation?
- Do you wear your work suit on your bike?
- Are you an urban cyclist or have you enjoyed cycling in nature?

I ask these questions mainly for other people who are considering cycling.

Let me chime in:

- What do you do when you get a flat tire?

I use a tube sealant.

- Do you wear a helmet?

All the time.

- How old are you? I ask this for older readers who think they can't cycle. No need to answer ;).

Sixty. My bike - see image above - is a 3 wheeler. It is even more stable than a traditional trike. Stability is important when you're my age.

- Is commuting by train and bike cheaper for you than using planes and automobiles?

No. Gasoline is cheaper.


- Are you bothered by smog?

Here in Los Angeles smog used to be an issue during the 1970s but our air got cleaned up since then.

- Is it safe to cycle where you are?

Depends on where I'm going to. I use the sidewalks whenever I can but I believe that it's illegal.

- Do you often meet strangers and have a nice conversation?

I get into a lot of conversations due to how unusual my bike is. (See my image up in my previous post.).

- Do you wear your work suit on your bike?

I used to wear my uniform. Biking is very easy with that kind of bike so I don't sweat.

- Are you an urban cyclist or have you enjoyed cycling in nature?

Strictly urban.



nanning

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Re: Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« Reply #4 on: August 22, 2019, 07:21:24 PM »
Thank you for your honest answers Villabolo! :) :D

I had thought you might have some stories from travelling that way, but that may be off-topic or too personal  :-X ::)
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wili

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Re: Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« Reply #5 on: August 22, 2019, 10:00:59 PM »
Not only is it usually illegal, driving on sidewalks is generally (if somewhat counter intuitively) more dangerous than driving on the road.

This is mostly because of the speed at which you are likely to enter an intersection, from a direction that drivers are only expecting slow moving pedestrians to be coming from, iirc.

Having said that, I must confess that in some circumstances I, too, sometimes bike on the sidewalk  ::)
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Villabolo

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Re: Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« Reply #6 on: August 24, 2019, 01:29:30 PM »
Not only is it usually illegal, driving on sidewalks is generally (if somewhat counter intuitively) more dangerous than driving on the road.

This is mostly because of the speed at which you are likely to enter an intersection, from a direction that drivers are only expecting slow moving pedestrians to be coming from, iirc.

Having said that, I must confess that in some circumstances I, too, sometimes bike on the sidewalk  ::)

Yes, it could be dangerous, but I always come to a stop before crossing the street. I also have two horns for my bike. One is a cutesie horn which sounds like something a clown would toot. My serious horn is an Air-Zound, which is very loud, every bit as loud as a car's horn. It uses compressed air which your tire pump can recharge.

VideoGameVet

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Re: Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« Reply #7 on: October 03, 2019, 02:40:49 AM »
- What do you do when you get a flat tire?

I commute on a Brompton folder.  I use Marathon tires and carry a spare tube.  This makes flats very rare.  I will switch to Marathon pluses when these tires wear out.

- Do you wear a helmet?

Not on the Brompton in LA, yes .. on the very fast Bacchetta (I see 40+mph speeds descending from where I live).

- How old are you? I ask this for older readers who think they can't cycle. No need to answer ;).

62.  I occasionally do 200km rides in a day (brevets).

- Is commuting by train and bike cheaper for you than using planes and automobiles?

Yes.  No gas or parking expense.  Also since I need to get to LA at 8:00AM at the start of the week, and sleeping on Amtrak is easy.

- Are you bothered by smog?

Only when it's bad.

- Is it safe to cycle where you are?

Ventura Blvd (when I go to Studio City) is challenging, but using CycleSavvy tactics helps.

- Do you often meet strangers and have a nice conversation?

Yes.

- Do you wear your work suit on your bike?

Office Casual.

- Are you an urban cyclist or have you enjoyed cycling in nature?

Urban during the week, more nature stuff (coastal San Diego) on the weekend.
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Diaminedave

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Re: Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« Reply #8 on: October 03, 2019, 01:19:48 PM »
Hi VGV,

Careful out there!
https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2019/oct/03/collision-course-pedestrian-deaths-rising-driverless-cars.

A long read in the Guardian about the dangers out there. Please don't let me put you off but just thought it was an interesting article at a slight tangent to your topic.

all the best DD

VideoGameVet

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Re: Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« Reply #9 on: October 03, 2019, 11:44:57 PM »
My choice in bikes is a three wheel recumbent. Much superior to a conventional bike. It almost rides like an automobile. You sit down in a chair, not saddle, with your legs horizontal making it much more stable and comfortable than even a conventional three wheeler. Your rear is only 20 inches from the ground adding to the stability of the bike and lower profile.

You can ride it all day without any of the aches and pain of a conventional bike. Together, with a trailer, it allows you the luxury of having up to four grocery bags (the big paper ones).

Unfortunately, it cannot fold or be compact.

In my daydreams, I imagine people in the open, grass scattered roads of a partially collapsed civilization, riding these bikes.

https://sunbicyclesnashville.com/trikes.php


Could happen:

"Humans went to the moon on purpose. We destroyed an entire planet by just not caring."

Stephen

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Re: Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« Reply #10 on: October 05, 2019, 02:31:53 AM »
Great idea for a thread VideoGameVet (I think I'll just call you VGV for short).

My question:  Does your employer provide end-of-trip facilities?  I'm talking about things like lockable undercover bike-parking with lockers and showers.

I spent close to 20 years commuting by bicycle in Melbourne Australia.  I only stopped because I am now umemployed and have no need to commute anywhere.  My commute varied (depending on the worksite) between 11 and 17 kilometres.  Melbourne is blessed with a network of dedicated bike paths that generally follow the rivers and creeks.  I used the Gardiner's Creek path.  The path ran by the end of my street.  Once on that path I could be in the city centre in 50 minutes without having to go on the road at all.   Doing the same trip by car and train would often take 1 hour.

http://www.bikepaths.com.au/map/show/1

Because I had access to a locker and showers I usually wore cycling knicks , jerseys and Shimano MTB shoes with cleats.  It wasn't just a commute for me.  It was my daily exercise.  I kept very fit.  I did need to get to work in a reasonable time so I used a Strava and a Garmin GPS tracker to keep a log of myrides.  So I turned my commute into a competition with myself to better my own times.  I found that this helped to keep me motivated.

It's funny how the puncture question keeps coming up.  The secret (as you have discovered with your Schawble Marathons) is to use good tyres.  I had a series of punctures in 2003 because of the crap tyres i was using at the time so I switched to either Continental Gators or Vittoria or Maxxis.  Between 2003 and 2017 I had one single puncture in approximately 5,000 rides for a total of about 20,000 klms.  People just do not understand how good the top-brand bicycle tyres are these days.  Forget about whatever you used when riding your bike to school 30 years ago.  Today's bike tyres are magnificent.   And of course, I carry my own pressure gauge and pump and keep inflated at the right pressure.  Too high a pressure is just as bad as too little.
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Villabolo

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Re: Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« Reply #11 on: October 06, 2019, 03:22:45 AM »
<snip>

In my daydreams, I imagine people in the open, grass scattered roads of a partially collapsed civilization, riding these bikes.

https://sunbicyclesnashville.com/trikes.php


Quote
Could happen:





Good catch VGV! Where did you find that image?

VideoGameVet

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Re: Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« Reply #12 on: October 07, 2019, 06:29:21 AM »
<snip>

In my daydreams, I imagine people in the open, grass scattered roads of a partially collapsed civilization, riding these bikes.

https://sunbicyclesnashville.com/trikes.php

Quote
Could happen:





Good catch VGV! Where did you find that image?

It's from a TV Series called "The Umbrella Academy" ... I took the pic off the screen.
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VideoGameVet

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Re: Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« Reply #13 on: October 07, 2019, 06:39:55 AM »
Great idea for a thread VideoGameVet (I think I'll just call you VGV for short).

My question:  Does your employer provide end-of-trip facilities?  I'm talking about things like lockable undercover bike-parking with lockers and showers.

The office does have showers and I could park the bike on the first floor, next to the free share bikes the facility provides (really).  But parking isn't an issue:



I have a folding bike (Brompton) which is very useful for going to coffee shops, restaurants etc. because I can keep it with me.



I'm typically biking a few miles from subway stations etc., so I don't need to shower (but I could).
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Villabolo

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Re: Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« Reply #14 on: October 08, 2019, 04:20:24 AM »
VGV, have you thought of motorizing your bike with an electric motor? It may not fit a folding bike but it's worth having another bike so equipped.

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Re: Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« Reply #15 on: October 08, 2019, 11:53:06 AM »
following with interest . I gave away my bike at 30 . I'm fast approaching 60 and been considering returning to 2 wheels (or 3 :) ) for short journeys . b.c.
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Re: Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« Reply #16 on: October 08, 2019, 02:53:23 PM »
Do get one. You can use if for the short journeys but possibly also for nice trips near where you live.

I always had a bike but only used it to go places and then at some point my then partner ran out of sports because they bored her so i was suggesting different sports and somehow we got to checking out some touristic routes near our city and just riding them and visiting forests and other nice spots.

When you live somewhere you usually don´t look at those because for holidays you look at greek islands and other exotic stuff.

I do live in the Netherlands which is very bike friendly so YMMV depending on were you live...probably does not work as well in Western Australia.

Quote
It's funny how the puncture question keeps coming up.
My experiences are broadly similar.

I can fix tires in my sleep since i had lots of practice or in fact way too much. That was in the early half of the 90s. They i bought the best thing i ever bought. It was called ´de Onplatbare´which translates as the one that cannot be made flat. It was double the price of a regular tyre at the time but it looked really good. They had an open model of it on display.

So i bought this tire and it survived at least 2 bikes and this was when they lasted longer then in my student times so in total a little over 20 years.

The last bike they were on was nearly disintegrating and i managed to actually deflate one of the tyres by cutting the sidewall over a couple of years. They never suffered a proper puncture.
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VideoGameVet

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Re: Ask me about commuting by bicycle (and multi-modal travel)
« Reply #17 on: October 08, 2019, 11:08:59 PM »
VGV, have you thought of motorizing your bike with an electric motor? It may not fit a folding bike but it's worth having another bike so equipped.

Brompton sells a electric model now and there are add-ons, but I do a lot of cycling and prefer to pedal on my own.



Lifetime of battling weight gain.  I'm now down to the lightest I've been in 21 years.

Funny, I'm considering doing a far harder ride this Sunday than that coastal one.
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