I just returned from a 9-day vacation in NYC, and while I was there, I saw–and was in the middle of (intentionally)–some pretty horrible traffic on my bike. I’m a traffic junkie, though, so I consider it a fun, challenging part of the ride, but it’s still incredibly dangerous if you don’t stay alert.
The video below, titled 3-Way Street, was shot in Manhattan, and shows just how close pedestrians, cyclists and drivers come to creating accidents at a typical intersection. Just keep in mind, this is only one intersection, in a city of millions, and this same scene repeats itself thousands of times a day, everyday.
I often kid with people that I save weight on my bike by riding without a seat. Now that I’ve seen this, I hope it’s not something that ever becomes a reality. Norwegian, Kurt Asle Arvesen, had a saddle failure at some point in his race, but instead of giving up, he simply stood up! 20km is only 12mi, but that’s a long way to go without the option of sitting down.
By the way, you can tell he’s spent more time in the saddle than out of it, because he looks a little out of his element constantly standing. Maybe a year on a high-geared singlespeed would be a good training option?
"Show me your friends, and I’ll show you your future."
The video may be pretty corny, but this looks like a pretty good skill to have, and the dude is definitely having fun with it. Must be hell on rear tires, though.
Last Tuesday, the mid-West got hit with a blizzard, and we’re still digging out. Mid-Missouri got around 18" dumped on us, so I’ve had to trade biking for shoveling to get my exercise. I’ve probably spent 8 hours or more since Wednesday morning pushing a shovel, mostly to get out of the house and enjoy the sunshine. With another 2" or so dumped last night, and more coming in the next day or so, it looks like I won’t be riding anytime soon. On the upside, it gives me plenty of time to post crap like this:
Cyanide and Happiness, 2-5-2011:
I have no idea where this next one comes from, but it’s pretty incredible:
I have no reference for this one, either, but I think it’s called a stepper crank. Very interesting set-up, but I think I prefer to spin my pedals in circles:
Let’s just forget we saw this one:
Typographic Bicycle art, by Aaron Kuehn, at http://aarline.info/hotaar/
Fabian Cancellara’s Specilized S-Works Red Hammer, about as aero as it gets:
And finally, one of the most beautifully simple lug joints I’ve seen. Matte gray, on a JK Cross frame, made by Kirk Frameworks:
I may be stuck inside for awhile, but that doesn’t mean I’m not still goofing around with my own bikes. For the second–and final–time, I decided to try out a drop bar and road levers on my singlespeed…
Looks good, I know. Unfortunately, due to my hand size, lever angle, and the fact that I prefer to stay on the hoods, the brakes just don’t perform with as much ease as I’m used to with bullhorns and tri levers. So, once again I’ve gone back to bullhorns, but this time, I’m trying out a Profile Design Airwing OS, with about 35mm of additional drop. It won’t get me as low as being in the drops on a proper road bar, but it’s a good compromise for better aero dynamics, while still using a brake set-up that I prefer.
I’m in no rush to get it installed, but I’ll post pics once it’s all put back together and I have a chance to get outdoors again. Until then, if you’re under a foot of snow right now, good luck keeping busy! And if you’re lucky enough to live in a warmer climate, piss off.
The Brompton folding bicycle is the modern urban commuter’s dream. From a full sized bike to a convenient piece of hand luggage in a matter of seconds. Cycling has never been so simple!
Queens NYC councilman wants every adult cyclist to register to ride: StreetsBlog.org
New Jersey lawmaker proposes the same ridiculous law (is this becoming a trend?): WashingtonExaminer.com
Want to ride w/ a slower rider, but make the ride potentially more dangerous? Try the BicycleBungee
Rael concept bike w/ rear-facing cameras and LCD monitor: Wired.com
Portland Design Works is installing a mini velodrome inside their headquarters: Bikerumor.com
Study: Bike infrastructure projects create more jobs than auto-based initiatives: FastCompany.com
5 California cyclists arrested for biking while intoxicated: GJEL.com
Winter Warriors – which type are you? Inlander.com
Skywalker – the 12ft tall bike that comes equiped w/ a ladder: HackaDay.com
Frostbitten cyclist discovers just how cold Siberia is: TheLocal.de
And finally, a classic video from Lucas Brunelle playing on the ice:
Downhill racing typically consists of flying down the sides of mountains, but what if you were to take it inside a tightly space city area instead?
Legendary mountain biker brothers Dan and Gee Atherton go for a ride through the Dona Marta slum in Brazil. The course was designed and built for the unprecedented Red Bull Desafio no Morro race.
They can’t steal what they can’t reach, although I see a ton of issues with this thing (weight, portability, finding posts of the right diameter). Still, it’s pretty interesting.
An equally impractical idea–although much cooler, since *I* thought of it–would be a small helicopter that hovers 30ft in the air with your bike suspended from it.
If Lucas Brunelle had gotten into motorcycles instead of bicycles, it would have gone something like this…
Best watched fullscreen on YouTube
Never be uncertain about the length of your travel again!
I just came across a great (and highly biased–my favorite kind) of article comparing steel and carbon frames. The author is obviously trying to make a point of durability and customization over light weight, and he gets it across quite well.
For more proof of why the typical rider might want to avoid plastic bike frames, check out BustedCarbon.com or watch the amusing video below showing a completely unscientific, but easily repeatable, comparison between AL, steel and carbon frames. KAPUT!
For the record, I don’t really have anything against carbon fiber; in fact, I love the stuff. In the years I’ve been biking, I’ve ridden carbon handlebars, a rigid MTB fork, a carbon road fork, and a couple seatposts. I wouldn’t mind building up a 13lb all-carbon bike for occasional use, either. But, I still feel that steel is the ultimate material when you’re going for a combination of strength, durability, ride quality, price, and ease of manufacture.
Hopefully it’s as warm and sunny where you are as it’s going to be in Missouri for the next few days. Get out and ride!
Now Travis is back with a double flip!
Some clever person has turned the Williams Avenue bike lane in Portland, OR, into a Mario Kart race track. If the City is as cool as they pretend to be, hopefully they’ll just leave it alone and let everyone enjoy the upgrade.
I just saw this today on Cyclelicio.us and had to
blatantly steal re-post it.
I’m curious about others’ thought on the matter, but the way I see it, the guy on the bike is 100% at fault. First, he heads the wrong way down a clearly marked one-way street, then rides so close the the parked cars that there’s little time for him to react to a pedestrian walking out from behind a parked car. The "you weren’t using a crosswalk" argument is total bullshit, too. Sure, crossing mid-street is technically illegal, but the guy looked in the direction of on-coming traffic before he crossed. He shouldn’t have needed to look in the direction traffic wasn’t supposed to be coming from. It’s like pulling over to make a cellphone call on the side of a road that specifically says no stopping, then getting hit by a drunk driver who swerves into you.
Okay, so maybe the pedestrian is 1% at fault, but the jackass’ remaining 99% liability doesn’t get canceled out by that.
Also, how about an apology? The pedestrian nearly slammed his head on the pavement, and probably ended up with quite a bit of bruising on other parts of his body.
Hey, jackass on the bike, you’re the reason cyclists are hated by others. If you’re going to go out of your way to ride illegally, how about a) taking precautions such as riding slower and paying more attention and, b) being man enough to accept full liability for your mistakes. Also, get a haircut.
I don’t know how many bike wrecks would have been avoided if people didn’t treat them like airplanes. Anyway, enjoy the carnage…
Designer Luke Douglas is showing off a concept bike he came up with as an entry for the James Dyson Awards. The bike, which is still in the early prototype stage, uses a tiny front wheel for maneuverability (I’ll complain about this momentarily) and a much larger rear wheel for stability. The rear wheel has a toothed drive, which sends power through the rear wheel rim, totally negating the use of spokes. The overall design is a bit awkward compared to typical 700c bikes, but it looks like it might work over the long run.
What happens when you mix a combined 87 IQ, bicycles, and someone’s discarded trash? Waste seven minutes of your life and find out…
Man, I love me some Lucas Brunelle. Although I’m not as masochistic as he is, his NYC videos are what made me want to ride that city as bad as I did. In fact, I’m not exaggerating when I say the single best ride I’ve ever had was along the coast of Brooklyn, and up through Manhattan after dark last April, weaving in an out of traffic and sprinting down open streets. Most of my day rides also came close to that much fun, even the one that ended on a bad note. I don’t know if I would have had such a lust for riding through NYC had I not spent a couple years watching Lucas’ videos as they showed up online.
Anyway, he now has an upcoming DVD of some great rides throughout some of the world’s busiest cities, called Line of Sight. Check out the trailer below to get an idea of what’s to come…
If you want to know when the DVD becomes available in October 2010, check his website: http://www.digave.com/