I have a theory!

adskis
adskis Posts: 85
edited July 2017 in Commuting chat
I have a theory.
I think that a lot of drivers are not expecting us to be going the speed we are going when commuting.

bear with me...

I have two persona on the bike
1. kiddie on the back and cruise about 12 - 15mph, stick to shared use paths, try to stay safe, visible, predictable, etc.
2. In baggies on a 'fast hybrid' and regularly cruise above 20mph and when pushing I am mid - high 20's - i.e. traffic speed, on the road.

I have noticed a vast difference in reaction from drivers in mode #2. I am going at the speed of other cars but don't get treated like other vehicles. In situations where drivers would give way, or give space to any other type of vehicle (scooter, motorbike, tractor, bus etc.) they don't to me when I'm on the bike.

I think some drivers think everyone on a bike is in 'mode #1' and are surprised when we are coming along at mid 20's.

Thoughts?

Comments

  • N0bodyOfTheGoat
    N0bodyOfTheGoat Posts: 5,819
    I had a similar thought a while back, we all need to fit rear child seats to our steeds and place a life-like doll in them.

    Naturally, dolls would have different ballast weights, so we are all riding with a total weight of at least 100Kg, to make Strava times more fair.;)
    ================
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    2017 Cube Attain GTC Pro Disc 2016
    2016 Voodoo Wazoo
  • hopkinb
    hopkinb Posts: 7,129
    Opposite experience on my commute - if I'm moving at the same speed as traffic, I find it easier to merge/overtake buses or other slow moving traffic, and often ride in with traffic instead of in the cycle lane. There are always tw@ts who resent cyclists for whatever reason and try and block you off deliberately, or drive 6 inches off your back wheel sounding their horn so they can get to the back of the next traffic jam more quickly than you. If I'm pootling for whatever reason - tired, wet, can't be @rsed, I often feel less safe.
  • fat daddy
    fat daddy Posts: 2,605
    I had a similar thought a while back, we all need to fit rear child seats to our steeds and place a life-like doll in them


    I wonder if different races have different CoF numbers .... would you get better aero having an Oriental Baby Doll instead of a Hawaiian one ?
  • fenix
    fenix Posts: 5,437
    I'd be quite surprised to see cyclists regularly doing high 20's - unless it's downhill ?
  • pblakeney
    pblakeney Posts: 25,218
    Clickbait! :wink: I am now old and can comfortably do low to mid 20s. When I was aged in my 20s I could easily keep up with 30mph traffic. Remember the drafting effect. Consider me hooked. :lol:
    The above may be fact, or fiction, I may be serious, I may be jesting.
    I am not sure. You have no chance.
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  • Palladium
    Palladium Posts: 81
    +1 drafting ( :lol: as long as you don't get a KOM from it)

    No traffic? Now I am a car. I position myself nicely behind a van, I can keep up easy at 30mph
    Traffic? Now I'm a moped, lanesplitting or I just use the cycle lane :D

    Best vehicle to draft is a van in my opinion. Lorries, too slow. Busses stop too much. Cars accelerate too fast (especially P100D's) and provide little draft. Coach is alright too.

    I do try to be as safe as possible when doing this, but if I can keep up as if I was a car there is no reason not to treat me like a car.
  • hopkinb
    hopkinb Posts: 7,129
    I don't draft cars, vans, lorries or buses for the simple reason I can't see the road ahead of them, and by the time I see the brake lights, I've probably hit the back of the vehicle in question at said 30 mph. Scooters yes, motos yes, as long as they know I'm there and don't mind. In fact I watched a fellow forum member claim a moto scalp yesterday morning. 8)
  • straas
    straas Posts: 338
    Why does everyone tend to over exaggerate?

    Nobody comfortably sits at 30mph for any period of time, and it isn't 'cruising' unless you can maintain a conversation without gasping.
    FCN: 6
  • dhope
    dhope Posts: 6,699
    straas wrote:
    Why does everyone tend to over exaggerate?

    Nobody comfortably sits at 30mph for any period of time, and it isn't 'cruising' unless you can maintain a conversation without gasping.

    You have FCN: 6 in your signature, which means you play 'The Game'. If you're not over exaggerating then you're not doing it right :roll: :wink:
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  • Palladium
    Palladium Posts: 81
    I never said it was comfortable, my commutes are zone 4 in the morning, zone 3 back
  • hopkinb
    hopkinb Posts: 7,129
    straas wrote:
    Why does everyone tend to over exaggerate?

    Nobody comfortably sits at 30mph for any period of time, and it isn't 'cruising' unless you can maintain a conversation without gasping.

    Wheeeeeee! Downhill I can! :wink:

    But you're right. When I say I'm moving at the same speed as traffic, that's London traffic, so 20-25 mph. I can keep that up for a while, but 30 mph is a proper effort.
  • Palladium
    Palladium Posts: 81
    edited July 2017
    hopkinb wrote:
    I don't draft cars, vans, lorries or buses for the simple reason I can't see the road ahead of them, and by the time I see the brake lights, I've probably hit the back of the vehicle in question at said 30 mph. Scooters yes, motos yes, as long as they know I'm there and don't mind. In fact I watched a fellow forum member claim a moto scalp yesterday morning. 8)

    hydraulic brakes, be alert (concentrate on the van/car ahead of you), draft a few meters behind, also don't draft in the middle draft just at the edge of the wake

    Don't do this:
    hqdefault.jpg
    Do this:
    HIHOc59aRnexJbZBkJXIaA.png
    Yeah its a risk I'm taking.. racing crits is pretty risky too.. don't see anyone complain about that one though
  • fenix
    fenix Posts: 5,437
    I did pass a dude drafting a bus at close to 50mph on a dual carriageway once. I guess there's no bus stops on that stretch - but it looked a bit too dodgy to me.
  • wolfsbane2k
    wolfsbane2k Posts: 3,056
    hopkinb wrote:
    Opposite experience on my commute - if I'm moving at the same speed as traffic, I find it easier to merge/overtake buses or other slow moving traffic, and often ride in with traffic instead of in the cycle lane. There are always tw@ts who resent cyclists for whatever reason and try and block you off deliberately, or drive 6 inches off your back wheel sounding their horn so they can get to the back of the next traffic jam more quickly than you. If I'm pootling for whatever reason - tired, wet, can't be @rsed, I often feel less safe.

    Typically this "when i'm moving with the traffic".
    However, the hill climbs around here mean that I'm maxing out 6-7 mph anyway, no matter what mode I'm in, so I regularly hear screeching of brakes or suffer close passes when people get it wrong on a national speed limit piece of road.

    But when passing t-junctions, they always seem to assume your going 10-15mph, not 20-25mph, if they "see" you vs "looking but not seeing" , and I've had many close calls at those ( given that >75 % of colilsions occur at junctions according to WMP, this is no surprise)
    Intent on Cycling Commuting on a budget, but keep on breaking/crashing/finding nice stuff to buy.
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  • roger_merriman
    roger_merriman Posts: 6,165
    Adskis wrote:
    I have a theory.
    I think that a lot of drivers are not expecting us to be going the speed we are going when commuting.

    bear with me...

    I have two persona on the bike
    1. kiddie on the back and cruise about 12 - 15mph, stick to shared use paths, try to stay safe, visible, predictable, etc.
    2. In baggies on a 'fast hybrid' and regularly cruise above 20mph and when pushing I am mid - high 20's - i.e. traffic speed, on the road.

    I have noticed a vast difference in reaction from drivers in mode #2. I am going at the speed of other cars but don't get treated like other vehicles. In situations where drivers would give way, or give space to any other type of vehicle (scooter, motorbike, tractor, bus etc.) they don't to me when I'm on the bike.

    I think some drivers think everyone on a bike is in 'mode #1' and are surprised when we are coming along at mid 20's.

    Thoughts?

    Sometimes yes, my around town bike is a old MTB with panniers and so on, normal clothes. even at 10/15 MPH i'm a fair bit faster than others who are >10mph just now and then I can see a car thinking about pulling out, that does a double take.

    more worrying is the CX where I'm travelling faster and have much worse brakes!
  • tangled_metal
    tangled_metal Posts: 4,021
    Years ago a kayaking mate.disappeared.from the scene for 6 weeks. When here.turned up again he looked like he'd done a few rounds with Tyson (dates it a bit). Turns out he'd been on the road section of a MTB route drafting a transit van when it braked suddenly. Woke up a day or so later with a bad head and memory of what had happened. Not a good idea to draft vehicles IMHO.
  • Palladium
    Palladium Posts: 81
    Okay I get what you're saying but.. best not to draft? Maybe you could extend that to best not to race or ride your bike more than 20mph?
    2e1d977b400500cc550d2b54afbfe8b0--tandem-bikes-pro-cycling.jpg

    Sitting in front of the telly is pretty safe as well I heard
  • fenix
    fenix Posts: 5,437
    I think its a bit obvious that drivers sometimes underestimate the speed that we are going - and you need to factor this into your riding. What's more important - your journey time or getting there a bit slower but with less risks ?

    I can't see that you'd be able to educate the car drivers - they hit each other still even though they know how fast cars can go.

    And drafting may be cool - but the risks are greater. No1 I'd have thought would be disappearing into a pothole that you just can't see. So do it at your own risk.
  • jgsi
    jgsi Posts: 5,062
    Thread going off tangent.... convince me otherwise but a non cycling motorist has the mindset that a bicycle is limited to 5mph by laws of physics.... they know horses can do over 30mph but all the horses they see on the lanes are actually going at 1mph... seemingly not an issue though as they will actually stop and pass when 10 yards of space becomes available.
    Travel at 18mph on 2 wheels without an engine and it is deemed work of the devil.
  • prowlbass
    prowlbass Posts: 159
    edited July 2017
    Drafting outside of races etc. is one of my biggest peeves commuting in London. It's accepted when driving that sitting off the bumper of the car in front is stupid and dangerous - yes, there's less kinetic energy involved on a bike, but you're still risking injury to yourself and someone else's property, so why do so many think it's completely fine on a bike and somehow less douchey?

    I've been taken out twice in London by a rider that's already on the ragged edge of their abilities jumping on my wheel when I've come past and then running into the back of me further down the road when I've slowed for traffic because they're riding above their ability trying to keep up - I'm yet to find one whose response to 'please don't ride my wheel' is anything other than aggro and perceived entitlement. If you want to race, keep it to actual races where everyone involved has signed up to the same risks. (The exception of course being drafting cyclist you know when you have actual or implied consent, such as club runs etc.)

    On the actual topic - much like some of the others on the thread, I find I'm safer travelling near the actual speed of traffic. Most of my scariest incidents have occurred when I've been pootling.
  • N0bodyOfTheGoat
    N0bodyOfTheGoat Posts: 5,819
    I went googling those lumpy spoke lights that display the bike speed in big fonts, but I can't recall their brand/model.
    ================
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    2017 Cube Attain GTC Pro Disc 2016
    2016 Voodoo Wazoo
  • prowlbass
    prowlbass Posts: 159
    I went googling those lumpy spoke lights that display the bike speed in big fonts, but I can't recall their brand/model.

    Monkey Lights?
  • N0bodyOfTheGoat
    N0bodyOfTheGoat Posts: 5,819
    prowlbass wrote:
    I went googling those lumpy spoke lights that display the bike speed in big fonts, but I can't recall their brand/model.

    Monkey Lights?

    That's what I thought, but it didn't bring up an images or videos showing speed for me. :evil:
    ================
    2020 Voodoo Marasa
    2017 Cube Attain GTC Pro Disc 2016
    2016 Voodoo Wazoo
  • fenix
    fenix Posts: 5,437
  • rjsterry
    rjsterry Posts: 27,242
    prowlbass wrote:
    Drafting outside of races etc. is one of my biggest peeves commuting in London. It's accepted when driving that sitting off the bumper of the car in front is stupid and dangerous - yes, there's less kinetic energy involved on a bike, but you're still risking injury to yourself and someone else's property, so why do so many think it's completely fine on a bike and somehow less douchey?

    I've been taken out twice in London by a rider that's already on the ragged edge of their abilities jumping on my wheel when I've come past and then running into the back of me further down the road when I've slowed for traffic because they're riding above their ability trying to keep up - I'm yet to find one whose response to 'please don't ride my wheel' is anything other than aggro and perceived entitlement. If you want to race, keep it to actual races where everyone involved has signed up to the same risks. (The exception of course being drafting cyclist you know when you have actual or implied consent, such as club runs etc.)

    On the actual topic - much like some of the others on the thread, I find I'm safer travelling near the actual speed of traffic. Most of my scariest incidents have occurred when I've been pootling.

    This. Thinking distance is usually greater than useful drafting distance. As documented on the rants thread I've been rear-ended a few times with varying degrees of damage and all culprits gave out about not expecting me to stop or some other drivel.
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  • pblakeney
    pblakeney Posts: 25,218
    PBlakeney wrote:
    Clickbait! :wink: I am now old and can comfortably do low to mid 20s. When I was aged in my 20s I could easily keep up with 30mph traffic. Remember the drafting effect. Consider me hooked. :lol:
    For clarity of the off topic discussion, I meant that there is some drafting effect even with a safe braking distance. And yes, under these conditions 30mph for a mile or so on the flat is quite comfortable. Then lights for a breather. :wink:
    The above may be fact, or fiction, I may be serious, I may be jesting.
    I am not sure. You have no chance.
    Veronese68 wrote:
    PB is the most sensible person on here.
  • imatfaal
    imatfaal Posts: 2,716
    prowlbass wrote:
    Drafting outside of races etc. is one of my biggest peeves commuting in London. It's accepted when driving that sitting off the bumper of the car in front is stupid and dangerous - yes, there's less kinetic energy involved on a bike, but you're still risking injury to yourself and someone else's property, so why do so many think it's completely fine on a bike and somehow less douchey?

    I've been taken out twice in London by a rider that's already on the ragged edge of their abilities jumping on my wheel when I've come past and then running into the back of me further down the road when I've slowed for traffic because they're riding above their ability trying to keep up - I'm yet to find one whose response to 'please don't ride my wheel' is anything other than aggro and perceived entitlement. If you want to race, keep it to actual races where everyone involved has signed up to the same risks. (The exception of course being drafting cyclist you know when you have actual or implied consent, such as club runs etc.)

    On the actual topic - much like some of the others on the thread, I find I'm safer travelling near the actual speed of traffic. Most of my scariest incidents have occurred when I've been pootling.

    This entirely. Had one yesterday - jumped onto my wheel as I passed the person he was drafting. Frankly anyone riding a carbon deepwheeler drafting a guy on a steel MTB should be ashamed - but he was very angry when I spotted him and waved him past; I was close to my limit on that bike and safe conditions so I knew I had no chance of riding him off the wheel. He, of course, was unable to pass even after I had stopped peddling and was turning around to harangue him, and refused to drop back; I reached my turn off to Trafalgar Square and noticed he was already looking behind for the previous person to latch back onto.
  • awavey
    awavey Posts: 2,368
    I think once you hit >20mph be that gravity assisted or otherwise does seem to confuse motorists expecting you to just be pootling along. theres a place on one of the routes I ride that has an incline start to it for 500metres, where you tend to be grinding abit to get up over it, so at that stage conforming to "slow" cyclist stereotype and you get overtaken alot which is fine, but once over the bump, its downhill & then flat for the next mile maybe 2 before it rises up again. So you can launch over it and comfortably quickly hit 25-30mph for the whole stretch, and that confuses the hell out of motorists, who still feel they need to overtake you but quickly realise they dont have the legal speed to do it and the ones that decide to go for it anyway, you end up drafting which confuses them even more :D
  • mtb-idle
    mtb-idle Posts: 2,179
    Fenix wrote:

    A guy on CS7 has one of these. It looks $h1t. FACT
    FCN = 4
  • cougie
    cougie Posts: 22,512
    I might tell my riding pals to get some so I can see how fast I'm drafting them at..