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Re: Welsh Cyclocross

CTC Forum - Racing - 4 November 2015 - 1:43pm
There is a North Wales league which, to my untrained eyes, is well supported and well organised. There is a Welsh Cyclo Cross Facebook group, but it's a closed group. Why? Don't they want people taking part or getting involved?

Re: Welsh Cyclocross

CTC Forum - Racing - 4 November 2015 - 1:36pm
Are there organisers in the north willing to step forward. With all these things it's a pain in the ar5e to organise so takes dedication from whoever steps forward. Maybe there just isn't anyone around there at the moment able to put in the effort?

EDIT: Just reminded me I did the 3 valleys race down south a few years back, that was absolutely awesome. So yeah a few of those in the North would be great too!

Re: Wraparounds misting up in the fog. Do I need them in win

CTC Forum - On the road - 4 November 2015 - 1:23pm
Try having a shave wearing varifocals!

I do every day with no problems (wet shave standing in front of the bathroom mirror on the wall behind the hand-basin).

Unlike yourself though, I'm short-sighted so that I'm useless without my specs. However, I have the advantage that for close work (reading and writing etc or fettling fiddly bits on my bike) I can simply take them off. I would also take them off if I was using a hand-mirror to shave with an electric razor. I'm a software developer and find the varifocals useless at work where I have 3 screens attached to 2 PCs on my desk, the mid-range zone is too small to be of any practical use. For work I have a pair of basic intermediate prescription single-vision specs - I find I can do most things in the office wearing them.

Back to the topic - I always ride in my normal everyday varifocals and the only time they mist up is when I stop for any reason. The lack of airflow immediately steams me up - sometimes even in summer.

Re: Waterproof walking boots and bottoms - would that do?

CTC Forum - On the road - 4 November 2015 - 1:20pm
Are you running SPD type pedals? (or for anyone else reading that is and considering the same) I've seen some great winter boot type shoes that you can walk in, click in with and aren't as wide as walking boots so don't keep rubbing on the cranks or worse on the pedal.

Cheapest , Medium, Expensive but great, Or if you want a road version

if you find later that you overheat riding uphill in waterproof trousers (unless its REALLY cold where you live!), an old courier trick was to wear regular roubaix style tights with a cheap pair of waterproof trousers cut down to make them into baggy shorts ergo your bum and back stayed dry and your legs wouldn't be bothered by being wet and dry off anyway.

Re: Fireworks - Thursday 5th Nov - watch out!

CTC Forum - On the road - 4 November 2015 - 1:10pm
Only worried about fireworks on Nov 5th? You are lucky. The local idiots have been letting 'em off for over a fortnight, and I don't expect to get any peace until about 3am New Year's morning.

Riding over empty cardboard tubes isn't really a problem. It's the ones flying towards you from the giggling moron running up a side alley you have to watch out for

Re: Touring in Ireland

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 4 November 2015 - 12:47pm
Hi, My first post on here although I have used the site for reference many times. We moved to Ireland last year and live on the Mizen peninsula. I've only done day rides since being here but am planning a little 5 day tour up to and around Kerry next year (gap of dunloe ect, can't wait). Everywhere around here just seems so nice, with lots of quiet roads and mountains. Mizen, Sheeps head and Beara peninsulas are all very good cycling and I'd recomend them to anyone. Also some daunting hills if you like that sort of thing (priests leap, evil).
My other reason for posting is that we could probably look after a car here for a few days (for free obviously). We also rent the house next door out so if it's free at the time may also be able to provide a nights accommodation if needed. Send me a PM if this may help you out. But bear in mind we only have room for 1 vehicle.

Trouble deciding on a tent upgrade

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 4 November 2015 - 12:39pm
Hi guys,

I am in the market for a new tent but after spending a good part of my spare time over the last 3 weeks looking at tents I am in need of some help/advice. I simply can't keep on finishing work to spend the evening staring at tents on the internet! Haha!

I've been using a Coleman Cobra 2 for a few years now and I don't think I can face camping with that tent for more than a couple of nights again - there are just too many design flaws with it, it's quite heavy, it turns into a sauna in warm weather, and it is near impossible to enjoy when the weather is bad outside as the vestibule area and flysheet design is rubbish. I have never been able to understand why the people who designed the Cobra left so many things wrong with it - do something like that where I work and the manager will soon be over having a word! I've always regretted buying the Cobra instead of the Vango Banshee, but, hey, I've slept in some incredible places in the Cobra so I am not going to begrudge it.

I've been looking at Wild Country Zephyros 2 and Terra Nova Laser Competition 2 - which seem very similar to each other, except the WC weighs some 600g more than the TN and is over £100 more expensive. Still, these tents will be similar in size and shape to the Cobra that I already own. I'd like a tent that I can sit up in without having to bow my head or or have my head constantly hitting the tent ceiling. I'd really like a tent that also cooks my meals and gives foot and back massages after a long days riding but I can't seem to find any on the internet!!

I wild camped with a couple of German's that I met on Skye during the summer and one of them had an MSR dome tent and I was amazed at how much space he had inside. My hang up with MSR dome's is that they are to be light grey - which won't help much when wild camping! I was in touch with Cascade Designs last week to simply ask them why they decided to go with a colour that doesn't blend in with the natural environment but the guy I chatted with didn't seem to understand what I was getting at. A white/grey tent can be seen some 5 miles away. He did tell me that all newer models of the Hubba NX were going to be grey and that I should try and find one with a green flysheet soon as they were being discontinued.

I am umming and arring between a tunnel tent and a dome tent. Like all bike packers I want lightweight, space, and a tent that offers protection from the weather. I am prepared to spend quite a lot on a very good tent but I am finding the decision very difficult. Should I really be getting so concerned about a sub 2kg tent? I'm very happy in the evenings when I just need a place to crash but I was getting very frustrated inside the Cobra when I was forced inside by awful weather.

I'm really interested to hear about which tents you are using and how content you are with them whilst undertaking 1-3 month tours.

Anyway, I am full of cold right now so I hope my writing is OK.

Re: Upset car driver?

CTC Forum - On the road - 4 November 2015 - 12:36pm
Flinders wrote:
I got abuse from a driver as a result. You just can't win.

Yes, you might well get some abuse. Which is why I have a very jaundiced view of motorists.

Re: Today's numpty count

CTC Forum - On the road - 4 November 2015 - 12:29pm
MikeF wrote:Mick F wrote:
Peds these days "look" with their ears only, instead of using ears plus eyes.It's become ingrained or conditioned in most of us. Traffic on a road is noisy. No noise=no traffic.
The trouble is, many of them are on their mobiles as well, some even with earphones. So they aren't looking or listening.
And modern cars can be very quiet.

Re: Upset car driver?

CTC Forum - On the road - 4 November 2015 - 11:54am
Mark1978 wrote:Of course the obvious answer to every single one of the drivers points is "I have the right to be here", and no further point needs to be made. Of course the main issue is that no response to the driver could ever calm him down or 'win' the argument, as he isn't looking for a reasoned discussion.

The driver may have been just using the confrontation with the cyclist to let off steam. But the fact that he used the "you should be on the pavement" line reflects the mad world we're now in. If local authorities (and cyclists) keep encouraging the use of off-road facilities instead of claiming road space, we're going to get a lot more of this.

Re: Cheap alternative to work stand-works great for simple s

CTC Forum - On the road - 4 November 2015 - 11:49am
this may be stating the obvious but it is best if the wheel axles are hard up against the dropouts when the wheels are fitted. If they are not, the wheels are a little more likely to move in service, not to mention that the brakes might be badly set etc.

I'd therefore recommend that when wheels are fitted, you either do it 'right way up with the weight of the frame bearing down on the wheels' or with the bike inverted.

If you refit wheels in a workstand, it is always a good idea to slacken and then retighten them once the bike is back on the ground. With many disc braked bikes this is almost mandatory if you don't want the brakes to rub.


Re: Cheap alternative to work stand-works great for simple s

CTC Forum - On the road - 4 November 2015 - 11:40am
karlt wrote:I use a stand for most things but I cannot for the life of me refit a rear wheel with derailleurs unless the bike is flipped. And yes I know what The Rules say.
Me too. Well at least getting the QR/axle to seat seems impossible.

Re: Unexpected behaviour on Cycle Lanes

CTC Forum - On the road - 4 November 2015 - 11:34am
Fogey wrote: ... And I spend my journeys trying to 'read' each oncoming cyclist: "how fast? are they watching me? which side are they trying to pass on? can they change direction?" ...

True. I tend to always stay to my left even when there are no other cyclists on the path, but many people don't, and I hate not being able to reasonably anticipate whether the cyclist approaching me is going to veer to their right or their left once they see me.

Re: Commuting on the first Monday since clock change

CTC Forum - On the road - 4 November 2015 - 11:30am
Nickeveson wrote:I cannot believe how different my ride home was tonight compared with last week. It's now dark on my way home, but with front and rear lights and high vis jacket I thought I was prepared. How wrong was I? Five near misses in 2 miles, by drivers who were a. In a hurry to get home and b. Not seeing my brightly lit bike and me due to street lights and other car lights distracting them.
I wonder if anyone has researched how many cyclists are hit in the week or two after clock change compared with other times of the year?
If as I suspect there is a marked increase in the first two weeks then surely an advertising campaign similar to the "Think Biker" campaign is needed.
Comments would be welcome

The most obvious effect on accidents of the clock changes is that in the spring, when the clock goes forward: there is a spike of accidents in the morning rush hour, just for a few days following the change. This has been attributed to the fact that drivers are more tired through having to get up what suddenly feels early. But after a few days they get used to it and the spike in accidents goes away.

But broadly you are right that winter time increases the rate of accidents, but not as a spike, as a general increase in rate. See http://www.rospa.com/road-safety/advice ... act-sheet/ Dark evenings produce more accidents than dark mornings, so it would be safer to have lighter evenings at the expense of darker mornings, in other words stick to BST all year.

Personally I hate dark mornings, and welcome the autumn clock change to reduce the experience of getting up in the dark. I would feel tired all day at this time of year. But a few years ago I got a "sunrise simulator" alarm clock, so it starts to get light in my bedroom from about 40 minutes before I get up, and I now suffer much less from dark season tiredness.

I disagree about the "confusion of other lights" effect, I don't believe it exists. I cycle in central London every day, and I have no difficulty whatsoever picking bicycles out of the many lights I can see, provided they have adequate lights. The ones I can't see very well have obviously inadequate lights, often because the battery is nearly flat, or the light is partly concealed by their clothing or luggage.

Unfortunately there was a fatal accident in central London a time back, precisely on my evening commuting route (I wasn't a witness), where a cyclist was driven over from behind by a car, despite being adequately lit. It was the evening rush hour in hours of darkness. The driver was acquitted of any offence, and the possibility of a confusing field of lights was mentioned by the defence. Unfortunately there seems to have been found no witness to the moment just before the accident itself, but there were several witnesses who saw the cyclist shortly before that, and they all said they had no difficulty whatsoever seeing the cyclist from among the other traffic and lights around when they saw him just before the accident. The defendant said she simply hadn't been aware of the cyclist until she struck him, and could not say if she had ridden him over directly from behind, or if he had suddenly changed line into her path. The lawyers for the defendant raised this possibility of a "confusing light-field" so that you couldn't pick out the cyclist, however they presented no scientific evidence to justify the truth of such an effect. As I said, I think it is absolute tosh, because it directly contradicts my own experience, and that of the other witnesses, but unfortunately the statement was not directly challenged in court, despite the lack of evidence. Of course my perception is not everyone's perception, and maybe there is a real effect that some people suffer. Research is needed to find out if it really exists. If it is a widespread issue, then maybe it can influence the design of cyclists' visibility tech to ensure that they are sufficiently obvious in such "light fields". But if it can be shown that there is a small minority of people who suffer that effect, then we should perhaps see this as a disability, and people should be tested for it before they are allowed to drive at night, because they can't be allowed to rear-end adequately lit vulnerable road users and kill them because of their own disability. I don't think that this was crucial factor in the acquittal of the defendant, I think the crucial factor is that no one could say whether the cyclist had suddenly changed line or not. (Not relevant to this discussion, I still think that is the wrong verdict - the woman admitted that she never saw a perfectly well lit cyclist she was approaching that all other witnesses saw perfectly obviously, and therefore it seems to me by definition she was not driving with due care and attention.)

Re: Today's numpty count

CTC Forum - On the road - 4 November 2015 - 11:24am
TonyR wrote:Three.

1. Waiting at the centre line to pull out and turn right at a t-junction. Driver pulls up on the left of me and tries to turn right with me

On my commute there are two points where I have to turn right off a main road. Apparently looking over your shoulder, sticking an arm out, looking again, then moving right in the lane means "No, I'm staying right here - you just go on and overtake, m'kay?".

Re: Upset car driver?

CTC Forum - On the road - 4 November 2015 - 10:15am
Of course the obvious answer to every single one of the drivers points is "I have the right to be here", and no further point needs to be made. Of course the main issue is that no response to the driver could ever calm him down or 'win' the argument, as he isn't looking for a reasoned discussion.

Re: Commuting on the first Monday since clock change

CTC Forum - On the road - 4 November 2015 - 10:14am
galaxy1 wrote:I hate to say this and i know we shouldnt have too, but at some point do we need to say that its becoming to dangerous to comute or cycle in certain places. Need it be due to bad driving, time of the year, road conditons, or where you need to cycle.
Its something i have been thinking about.
No, we need to say it's too dangerous to let motorists continue to drive there as they currently do, but this is the UK, where we react to air pollution by telling people to drive motor vehicles more, so I'll be very pleasantly surprised if we do what's needed.

Re: Upset car driver?

CTC Forum - On the road - 4 November 2015 - 10:13am
661-Pete wrote:The point is, assuming you're starting from Newhaven, there is literally no alternative. Unless you want to take a long detour via Lewes, and then it would involve a stretch of the busy A27 D/C. NCN2? (Not recommending it; don't know it; just curious.) On a map, it looks like a classic Sustrans backroads meander, but shorter than via Lewes... On Google maps it looks loose surfaced in parts and seriously hilly. I now understand the choice of A259!

Re: Unexpected behaviour on Cycle Lanes

CTC Forum - On the road - 4 November 2015 - 10:12am
mjr wrote:But then, why is salmoning a problem when it's a cycle lane and yet often encouraged when it's a cycle track on only one side of a carriageway?

If there is physical seperation it's an entirely different matter and it can be thought of a seperate road in it's own right. Whereas a painted cycle lane is just a lane, that you can go in and out of as appropriate.
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