MPH VS KPH

Flasheart
Flasheart Posts: 1,278
edited August 2009 in Road beginners
I was just wondering why people in the UK refer to their cycling speeds and distances in KPH rather than MPH as the roads are here :?: When they are driving cars I bet they are using MPH as a gauge.
Not having a go at anyone, it's that I just don't understand why that's all. :?
Hell it took me long enough to work out "mile" distances after arriving from Oz and being brought up on KM's all my life now I have to convert it back again.
Is it that using KM's makes it sound and look faster than typing MPH or is there some evil Continental cycling conspiracy afoot? :roll:
The universal aptitude for ineptitude makes any human accomplishment an incredible miracle. ...Stapp’s Ironical Paradox Law
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Comments

  • JackCB
    JackCB Posts: 92
    We are backwards in the UK generally. I don't really see why we stick with the mile for distances, the rest of the world went metric some time ago... (I suppose the cost of redoing road signs is an issue)

    With cycling I think you're probably right on both counts. It is partly about kilometers sounding faster/further, but it's also down to the fact that the cycling community is fairly international, and the pro circuit is certainly more European than British - hence the metric system is used!
  • mgcycleguy
    mgcycleguy Posts: 292
    ... I think its because cycling isnt really a British sport... so much of its terminolgy is european.... Bit like "Goal" in football is pretty much the same the world over
  • skinson
    skinson Posts: 362
    I do it because I'm intelligent enough to be able to work in both units :wink:
    Dave
  • Steveorow
    Steveorow Posts: 162
    30 Kph is faster than 19 mph . 30 is more than 19 :D[/list]
  • teagar
    teagar Posts: 2,100
    I like to compare myself to the professional riders both new and old.

    Then again, it might just be the Dutch influence :wink:.

    It's definitely the evil continental conspiracy thing.

    After doing a bit of maths mechanics in my time I got really fed up having to convert imperial to metric units all the time so i secretly hate all imperial units.
    Note: the above post is an opinion and not fact. It might be a lie.
  • screebs
    screebs Posts: 178
    I use both - when doing an Audax last week i set my bike computer to kmh, but normally if training i have it on mph
    Me struggling up Mont Ventoux for the first time! Done it 3 times since (each way up) without stopping. This seems like a lifetime ago! http://img208.imageshack.us/i/snapshot2 ... 45552.tif/
  • Chrissz
    Chrissz Posts: 727
    For cycling or driving I like to work in miles, however, if I'm on foot then it has to be km.
  • balthazar
    balthazar Posts: 1,565
    I judge everything in miles. I can't think in km – but I can mentally calculate it back to miles pretty quickly. I had an imported car with kph speedo, which taught me the corresponding numbers by rote.

    The length units I think in are: millimetres; inches; feet; metres; miles. I quite enjoy the silly irregularity, as a reminder of the the confused odds and ends of real life.
  • paulcuthbert
    paulcuthbert Posts: 1,016
    I don't drive a car, but I use km/h because I understand it better. 1km = 1,000m and I can visualise in my mind what a metre is. I can't do the same for miles.
  • Woodchip
    Woodchip Posts: 205
    balthazar wrote:
    I judge everything in miles. I can't think in km – but I can mentally calculate it back to miles pretty quickly. I had an imported car with kph speedo, which taught me the corresponding numbers by rote.

    The length units I think in are: millimetres; inches; feet; metres; miles. I quite enjoy the silly irregularity, as a reminder of the the confused odds and ends of real life.
    Ditto on the thought pattern.
    I have nothing more to say on the matter.
  • skyd0g
    skyd0g Posts: 2,540
    If you're younger than about 38.5 then you're probably decimal...
    ...whereas if you're older than 38 and-a-half, then you're mostly Imperial...

    For me the following units apply:
    Milk - Pints
    Speed - MPH in car or on bike
    Petrol - Gallons (although I'd probably feint if I worked-out the current price of a gallon of petrol). :shock:
    Height - Feet & Inches
    Weight - Stones & pounds
    TV size - Inches
    Sugar - 2lb bags
    Sweets - 1/4lb
    Small measurements - Millimetres
    any bigger than 5cm converts to Inches, then Feet & Inches, then Yards, then Miles
    Records - 7" and 12"
    Todger - Inches, although not as many as I'd like.
    Clothes - Inches
    Beer - Pints
    Potatoes - 5lb bags / 56lb bags
    Cycling weakly
  • 211dave112
    211dave112 Posts: 125
    skyd0g wrote:
    If you're younger than about 38.5 then you're probably decimal...
    ...whereas if you're older than 38 and-a-half, then you're mostly Imperial...

    For me the following units apply:
    Milk - Pints
    Speed - MPH in car or on bike
    Petrol - Gallons (although I'd probably feint if I worked-out the current price of a gallon of petrol). :shock:
    Height - Feet & Inches
    Weight - Stones & pounds
    TV size - Inches
    Sugar - 2lb bags
    Sweets - 1/4lb
    Small measurements - Millimetres
    any bigger than 5cm converts to Inches, then Feet & Inches, then Yards, then Miles
    Records - 7" and 12"
    Todger - Inches, although not as many as I'd like.
    Clothes - Inches
    Beer - Pints
    Potatoes - 5lb bags / 56lb bags

    not a forum or internet expert but this has to be the best post i've read, mostly because i agree with everything you said, and then a bit of humour.

    :):)
  • sicknote
    sicknote Posts: 901
    I use MPH on the bike and am happy to stick to it for now as my top speed is 46.5mph, done some where on the London to Cambridge but not sure where as look at it was not my first choice :wink:
  • Takis61
    Takis61 Posts: 239
    KPH as per all the bike mags & continental reporting, easier to compare.
    Similarly kg for weight - all the talk ref. Brad Wiggins is he now weighs 71kg
    My knees hurt !
  • I use MPH as i do with the car as it's the unit i'm used to in both speed and distance.
  • yup, cos KMs have a higher number. 'What speed do you average on your commute?' '35' 'Nice!'.
  • hazychris
    hazychris Posts: 202
    km for me, as it's easy to calculate gradients with metres gained (and yes, I work in "%" for gradient not "x in y").

    A hilly ride for me (YMMV, but I'm quite heavy!) is averaging 1m ascent in 100m on the ground. So a 100km sportive with 1000m climbing would be "hilly". A 160km sportive with 2400m climbing is "very hilly".

    I use miles in the car though, as speed limits are in mph.

    Pretty much everything else in my life is metric: weight, volume, money, height, European shoe sizes, but shirt collars are still in inches.
  • timb64
    timb64 Posts: 248
    edited August 2009
    MPH -it's what we still use to measure speed on roads in the UK
  • kozzo
    kozzo Posts: 182
    timb64 wrote:
    MPH -it's what we still use to measure distance on roads in the UK

    speed
  • CiB
    CiB Posts: 6,098
    skyd0g wrote:
    Petrol - Gallons (although I'd probably feint if I worked-out the current price of a gallon of petrol). :shock:

    99.9p / L = ~£4.54 / gallon. Petrol had just hit £1 a gallon when I passed my test.

    Me? Small distances - inches, half, quarter & sixteenths, & thou if appropriate.
    Larger distances - feet, yards & then miles.

    Speed - mph.

    Height - feet & inches.

    Etc

    Everything is imperial in my world - I can easily convert if necessary but the occasions when I need to are just so rare that it's not an issue.

    What is noticeable is that for all the BBC's insistence on the UK being metric, whenever we have extremes of weather - temperature, rain, snow - the imperial units are given to reinforce how hot or deep it is.
  • timb64
    timb64 Posts: 248
    kozzo wrote:
    timb64 wrote:
    MPH -it's what we still use to measure distance on roads in the UK

    speed

    Now edited :oops: (pedant)
  • 1892
    1892 Posts: 1,690
    MPH but I'm over 35
    Justice for the 96
  • bompington
    bompington Posts: 7,674
    Furlongs per fortnight (2688f/f = 1mph)
  • LittleB0b
    LittleB0b Posts: 416
    I think cos we are a bit messed up.

    on my bike i use mph- but running i work in km's (and the only distances i can equate are 50km - to 30mph and 5km to 3 miles)

    Out on the hill i use km's as that's what the scale on OS maps works in

    for short lenghts i use meters

    for horse i can use hands

    I have no idea how long a foot is

    and i definatly can't work in farenheight (or however it's spelt) 78F means nowt to me.
  • LittleB0b
    LittleB0b Posts: 416

    What is noticeable is that for all the BBC's insistence on the UK being metric, whenever we have extremes of weather - temperature, rain, snow - the imperial units are given to reinforce how hot or deep it is.

    Don't they just do that to help old people?
  • CiB
    CiB Posts: 6,098
    LittleB0b wrote:

    What is noticeable is that for all the BBC's insistence on the UK being metric, whenever we have extremes of weather - temperature, rain, snow - the imperial units are given to reinforce how hot or deep it is.

    Don't they just do that to help old people?
    No - they do it because they know that telling us that it's 86 degrees means a lot more than announcing that it's 27 [or whatever] centigrades, or that 10" of snow fell in 4 minutes is still more meaningful that 25.4cm. And in all honesty, not once in my whole life have I ever heard a gentleman's member described in metric terms. "Jeez that's big" is not a metric term to the best of my knowledge. :)
  • LittleB0b
    LittleB0b Posts: 416
    No - they do it because they know that telling us that it's 86 degrees means a lot more than announcing that it's 27 [or whatever] centigrades

    are you sure it's not cos you is old?

    27C i understand (don't go out without sun block) - 4C i understand (wear everything).

    if someone says 86 the first thing i think is - that's nearly boiling - then i think hang on it must be F - then i ask my mum what temperature that is in new money or use google convert
  • Stone Glider
    Stone Glider Posts: 1,227
    I use kph as it seems faster to me. :?

    Driving in Oz is odd as you drive on the left but measure your speed in kph :o Familiar and unfamiliar jostle in a confusing manner at times.
    The older I get the faster I was
  • inch = 1000 thou
    foot = 12 inches
    yard = 3 feet
    furlong = 220 yards
    mile = 8 furlongs
    league = 3 miles

    No ryhme or reason to it at all in my view.
    It's all over the shop.

    10mm = 1cm
    100cm = 1m
    1000m = 1km

    Metric is all 10's, 100's, 1000's
    Just makes more sense to me.

    Pico, nano, micro, kilo, mega, giga, tera.....welcome to the year 2009.
    :wink:
  • mikeq
    mikeq Posts: 141
    Yeah

    Kilobyte = 1024 bytes
    Megabyte = 1024 Kilobytes
    Gigabyte = 1024 Megabytes etc etc

    much more sense
    Cycling from Glasgow to Paris to raise funds for Asthma UK

    www.velochallenge.org