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Re: Taking a bike on a train

13 February 2015 - 3:15pm
I once got on the train and found that I couldn't put the bike down because the space was full of luggage, and I couldn't move the luggage because I was standing in the aisle holding the bike while a queue of passengers stood behind tutting.

Sometimes the door/lobby is too small to get the bike through without taking the panniers off. Watch out the train doesn't disappear off up the line with your bags while you're unloading the bike and then fighting your way back onto the train against a tide of disembarking passengers who all think you're an impatient git who won't wait to embark.

Sometimes they will tell you that if you want to book you need to do it 24 hours in advance.

Re: Taking a bike on a train

13 February 2015 - 3:00pm
Transpennine are quite flexible on bikes. In theory I think they ask for reservations, but in practice I've never yet been asked to show that I've got one. The downside of that is that you can't always guarantee that there'll be (physical) space for your bike on the train: those routes can get very crowded, so the advice above to try to travel off-peak is definitely worth following. (You could go with Northern from Manchester to Wigan too. They're generally very cycle-friendly: no reservations needed, and -- unless you happen to run into a grumpy guard -- a generally common-sense attitude to letting as many bikes onto a train as will comfortably fit. Their rolling stock consists of a random selection of the rest of the country's cast-offs, though, so it's very hard to predict what sort of bicycle storage area there'll be, or where it'll be located.)

Re: Cycling into the sun

13 February 2015 - 2:15pm
Flinders wrote: In a cycle shop £70+. In a safety clothing shop . . £8.

Are you sure they're the same specification? If so that's pretty outrageous.

They probably are the real thing. A couple of years ago one of my friends worked for Oakley and she got me a pair of Ducati sunglasses for "cost and the price of a beer." I gave her £20. At that time,in the shops, they were £119.95. There really is that much of a mark-up on such things.

Re: Good Pannier or Rear Rack for Dawes Discovery?

13 February 2015 - 2:07pm
Vantage wrote:These panniers seem to get very good reviews although I've not tried them myself.
http://www.sjscycles.co.uk/sjsc-rear-pa ... prod11550/They're not bad, but they're not great either. They're a good size for the weekly shop and light. They're also cheap, but to rectify the shortcomings needs some money spent on them.

Basically the rack attachment is pants. It's the old fashioned simple hook type. The hooks are too close together and the backing plate is thin flexible plastic. To get these panniers working well I needed to buy some correx board and some rivets. The board is cut to overlay the existing board. The hooks are removed and re-rivetted through the correx at much wider spacing to give more rigid support.

I then dispensed with the old bungee strap at the base of the bags. I then moved the D ring to the bottom of the bag. A large quick release zip tie then attaches the D ring to the base of the rack. Release the zip ties to remove the bags, otherwise the bags are good for keeping on the bike permanently - little chance of the average scumbag figuring out how to remove them.

The whole thing results in an extremely rigid setup.

Because they are light, they're not the most durable bags. To reduce wear I placed sections of thin karrimor sleeping mat at the bottom of the bags. This really helps when sharp edged objects are placed within.

EDIT: there's pictures of my modification towars the end of this thread viewtopic.php?f=5&t=79714&hilit=sjs+pannier+bags&start=15

Re: Filthy Drivers: Roadside Rubbish

13 February 2015 - 1:42pm
I don't believe in a sin scale. Knowingly dropping litter, be it a gel sachet, a punctured inner, a car tyre or a sandwich wrappers. They are all litter. I have challenged car drivers who have chucked fag ends or crisp bags out of a car window and asked whether it would be ok for me to chuck my rubbish on their front garden.

Re: Taking a bike on a train

13 February 2015 - 1:03pm
Generally, if you travel off-peak it's OK, but you can get busy trains all the time going to certian destinations like airports. Then you sometimes find the bike space is full of suitcases. Also, avoid Friday afternoons, when students are travelling home for the weekend with large cases, rucksacks, etc.

Re: Taking a bike on a train

13 February 2015 - 12:09pm
Only last year I had my first experience of bikes on trains. I'm based in scotland so can't comment on your exact train company. But what I can say is... I had to get two trains and gee they were a totally different experience. The first train... Fabulous... A designated bike bit so I could secure my bike and sit close by. Easy. The second train was a total nightmare and in hindsight Id have rather just cycled the 20odd miles. No designated bike bit. Had to stand wi bike in the doors section. Buggies. Prams. Ignorant people. Panicking people. Constantly having to move the bike to accommodate all of the above. Not a pleasant experience at all.

Re: Taking a bike on a train

13 February 2015 - 11:06am
http://www.atob.org.uk/bike-rail/uk-bik ... vel-guide/ for general principles; http://www.atob.org.uk/bike-rail/uk-bik ... trictions/ for specific companies. Try http://www.traintimes.org.uk/live/ or wikipedia to see who serves a station.

Re: Taking a bike on a train

13 February 2015 - 11:02am
If it's a TP then the bike bit is under the pantograph.
I think that's what it's called (the bit that connects it to the overheads) [emoji3]
I've only ever used TP and Virgin but never had a problem. Very important to be at the right end with Virgin as its behind the drivers cab depending on direction of travel.

Re: Taking a bike on a train

13 February 2015 - 10:50am
Yeah, I did have a read of the websites and they all say roughly the same - best to book in advance and there should be two bike spaces on a train. That's the theory - I was just wanting to know how it compares with practice.

That's a good tip about finding out where the bike carriage is in advance. Will give the train company a bell to see what they say - there's a change at Manchester but it's the same train company (Trans Pennine Express) for both trains.

Re: Filthy Drivers: Roadside Rubbish

13 February 2015 - 10:45am
When I see a gel wrapper on the road I think it must have been some scum of a cyclist and when I see a banana skin I suspect that is also a possibility, even a probability if it is the right sort of place.

However I find it hard to believe that the car tyres, TV sets, mattresses, MacDonalds, Coke bottles, feed sacks and the other 99.99% of roadside rubbish was dropped by cyclists.

So even as a cyclist I find the minuscule amounts of rubbish dropped by cyclists to be possibly a million times (by weight) as offensive as that dropped by others.

Some litter louts are aware of the fact that it isnt illegal to dump on private land and drop their rubbish accordingly.

Re: Filthy Drivers: Roadside Rubbish

13 February 2015 - 10:09am
661-Pete wrote:Perhaps we ought to all get out with a camera and post the worst examples.

Could be flytipping, could be art, it's hard to tell sometimes .

661-Pete wrote:The biggest single item?
A car, well, most of one. It has no wheels, no engine, nor any other identifying features. The top's been chopped off and it's filling up with other rubbish.

When I first reported it as fly-tipping the internal rubbish included a fridge. It was "parked" on a road in an industrial estate. The fridge was taken but the car was left. Eventually the car was moved but not far, it's still on the adjacent pavement .

Re: Cycling into the sun

13 February 2015 - 9:07am
In a cycle shop £70+. In a safety clothing shop . . £8.

Are you sure they're the same specification? If so that's pretty outrageous.

Re: Taking a bike on a train

13 February 2015 - 1:11am
As drossall says, it depends on the rail company, and it also depend on the type of train.

The company will probably have a cycle policy on their website, you may or may not be expected (or indeed able) to book, and there may or may not be bans on non-folding cycles at peak times.

Also, with some trains (usually the larger intercity ones) you put your cycle in a dedicated compartment (what would once have been called the guard's van); sometimes you put it in designated space in the train (there's usually a cycle symbol on the approprate door/s); sometimes you just put it in the door area of any carriage. If unsure, arrive at the station a few minutes early and ask platform staff where you should stand to be ready for quick loading. If it's a long train with only one place to put cycles you do not want to be at the wrong end of the platform and have to run to the other end with bike, dodging the other passengers, while the staff are trying to get the train away a.s.a.p.

FWIW I quite often use First GW (not relevant for the OP I know) and have never had any problems with taking a bike.

Re: Taking a bike on a train

13 February 2015 - 12:44am
Depends on the railway company. Check their site or ask at the station. For example, Northern Rail. Looks as though it's generally OK, but you could get caught out if other cyclists turned up too.

As a generalisation across companies, you can often just put the bike on, generally in the door area. In peak hours and with some companies, only folders are allowed.

Taking a bike on a train

13 February 2015 - 12:37am
How easy is it to take a pushbike onto a train?

Having read through another thread on here, I'd like to visit a bike shop in Wigan (Winstanley's). I could drive over but sitting on a train reading or simply looking out of the window is preferable to driving over The Snake Pass and then travelling around the M60.

The train station is about two and a half miles away on the Sheffield side, similar on the Wigan side. It would be much easier if I could just get on my bike and do the short journeys either side on bike.

So, is it simple? I've never taken a bike on the train before and can't say I've seen many other people do it. Is your bike kept safe or is it recommended that one stays with it? I'd likely be travelling outside peak hours during the week.

Re: Filthy Drivers: Roadside Rubbish

12 February 2015 - 9:28pm
I've been on a volunteer 'litter pick' before now, several times. Can be quite an entertaining way of spending a morning. You never know what you're going to turn up (though - sorry to disappoint - the chances of a hoard of Roman coins are pretty slim ). I did find a perfectly serviceable sledgehammer once - an odd thing to cast away (one of my fellow volunteers took it off me, he said he had a use for it - I didn't ask what?!). And many years ago, on a different occasion, I turned up a glass mug - dirty but quite intact - emblazoned with the insignia of King George VI's coronation. If it was an original, might have been worth a bob or two. Alas! As I was admiring my find, another volunteer on the slope above me let go of a big stone, it rolled down, struck my hand, and the mug was smashed.

But there can be an ironic twist to these litter-pick enterprises. On a more recent occasion, we'd spent a morning on a litter-pick organised by the Town Council, and piled all the rubbish into a skip. We later learnt that the County Council had deemed that the contents of the skip were commercial waste, and they wanted to charge the Town Council at the going rate for taking it away. The skip remained by the roadside, uncollected, for several days of wrangling. We might as well not have bothered, it seemed. Eventually it disappeared. I don't know who coughed up what.

Re: Good Pannier or Rear Rack for Dawes Discovery?

12 February 2015 - 9:23pm
OP, I have a Discovery 501, I've had a 201, 301 and a 401 too, they have taken me across countries and do the weekly food shopping too! I have had umpteen racks but the best, by far, is suggested by "foxyrider", the Tourtec.


foxyrider wrote:I would suggest a Tortec Expedition rack http://www.jejamescycles.co.uk/tortec-e ... 16200.html

Re: Filthy Drivers: Roadside Rubbish

12 February 2015 - 8:52pm
I'm noticing an increase in fly tipping round here - probably at least in part due to the fact that the council closed the "Recycling Centre" on this side of town. It used to be about 3 miles away (& I could manage a bag of garden waste on my bike trailer) but now the 2 remaining are both about 8 miles away so anything that doesn't qualify for the supplied recycling bins now goes in our general waste bin...

...Anyway, back to the matter of fly tipping - I was quite pleased last Friday to see a council truck & associated workmen had cleared the stuff dumped at the roadside near us (I saw the truck leaving). By Sunday morning there were fresh bags/boxes of stuff dumped at the roadside!

Rick.

Re: Cycling into the sun

12 February 2015 - 8:21pm
X Loop sunglasses from Ebay. Top kit. UV 400 filters. £10 a pair. I also wear Bolle sunglasses, totaly cool. In a cycle shop £70+. In a safety clothing shop . . £8. You have been warned. Clear version also available for Squash players.

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