How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Beating the system - the cycling commuting section

Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby Summernight » Mon Sep 15, 2014 10:44 am

I was undertaken by a cyclist this morning on Albert St, East Melbourne in the two block section without a bike lane in a way I thought was unsafe. This cyclist could have overtaken on the safer, right hand side of me, even with me claiming the left lane (there was still room on the right of the left lane), but he decided not to. The same guy on Macarthur St a bit later then wanted to wait until a truck and dog trailer (like the one that killed that lady in Brisbane recently) started moving off on MacArthur St as the bike lane there is tight and the dog trailer was cutting a little bit into the bike lane. I had absolutely no problem with him waiting and being safer in relation to the truck, but thought it a bit ironic that he didn't think undertaking me was unsafe, but a truck and dog trailer yes.

There were two of these truck and dog trailers within 100 metres of each other on Macarthur Street this morning during peak hour. I was a bit surprised they were travelling down such a tight and busy road, especially during peak hour and given their two options at Spring Street are either to continue down the even tighter Collins Street, or turn left (with all the dangers that poses) into Spring Street.

Also, I was overtaken up the Albert Street hill by a lady on a cargo bike. I passed her on the flat, but then saw her in my rear view not even struggling as I'm puffing up the Albert Street hill. I thought to myself "surely she's got electric assist". As she powers past me up the final bit of hill I see that, YUP, there is the electric motor in the rear wheel. Phew. Dignity preserved. Haha. :P
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by BNA » Mon Sep 15, 2014 11:33 am

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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby fat and old » Mon Sep 15, 2014 11:33 am

TailWind wrote:
fat and old wrote:Nice ride in :D

However, lost my patience with the people building a new bridge to connect the Darebin Ck path to a side street last night. Been closed since May or something, last week for no reason as the job's finished, even the council agreed it was. Last night after the rain the prospect of going around in the mud again made me see red. Fences are down, trail is now open.


Nice work, f&o, but you missed a few :mrgreen:
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I also find the new section of the path a lot narrower than the original one, with the potential for ped mayhem where the bridge joins the path:
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Would have preferred the council to build an underpass under Settlement Rd (where the creek flows under the road) to properly join the DCT at that point.



Yeah, I saw that on Friday....somebody put the first and last ones up again. :evil: I'll take em down, perm like tonite. I'm done with that stupid fence. FWIW, the council didn't stump up for that one....the developer of that estate on the other side of the creek did, and council's parks dept is quite unhappy with the delays. A nice crossing under Settlement Rd would be nice tho...even a crossing at street level would be good. Dunno how many times I've hit that little stump in the dirt track :lol:

Went to work via Cooper St and the Hume Fwy track yesty. Was a nice morning, so turned right and continued down the Merri Ck trail. Got to the end, figured I'd check a job in Arden St, so went down the CCT. Job done, thought I'd go out via CCT and MYT to St Georges Rd. Up St Georges and Dalton, and I'm home. That new bridge under Chas Grimes bridge in the city is cool 8) Was a bit tired at the end, no wonder. 80k's. Didn't actually get to work (in Preston) though :lol:

And I hate the sunday crowds at the Collingwood kiddies farm :? :lol:

Beat the rain by 10 minutes or so today, which was good being in shorts and a jersey not expecting it :lol:
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby find_bruce » Mon Sep 15, 2014 11:53 am

A glorious day to commute today. Had a strangely quiet stretch where there is normally a stream of cars crossing the unbroken centreline because they MGIF, despite the 40km/h speed limit.

Just had a look at the rear camera - there was a fully laden cement truck behind me that was slower than I am - funnily enough the stream of cars sat patiently behind it.

So my new safe cycling strategy is to find a 30 tonne wingman :D
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby Lizzy » Mon Sep 15, 2014 3:50 pm

Spring is sprung, the grass is ris ... beautiful weather this morning. Not the flashest start due to a lady in a green station wagon who failed to give way at a roundabout while looking me in the face :roll: For her efforts she got my very best "lung capacity demonstration", fortunately this worked and I lived to tell the tale ...

Full house in the Nice Showers this morning, had to default to my secret cavern that I don't think anyone else knows the existence of - notably not the cleaners; well, it gets the job done and I don't have to wait.

And I just got a parcel locker text, the new Oxford handlebar for my pack mule is here :D
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby fat and old » Tue Sep 16, 2014 8:04 am

The wife showed at work yesty arvo, so I piked, and got a lift! :lol: Lazy, lazy bum. First time since April tho, so I don't feel too bad. Had to ride to mums to help out after work so I had some consolation.

Therefore, those stoopid fences are probably still up, although I spoke to a council fella yesterday and he agrees that the path itself should be open, said to call back today to see how he went. Maybe some joy, who knows?

Nice ride this morning, I'm enjoying the mildness :D

One thing I noticed riding in the car home last night is how frustrated I get with the traffic. I knew I hated it, but it was a real eye opener. Since ditching the car totally earlier this year I've really calmed down a lot :D
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby jasonc » Tue Sep 16, 2014 8:23 am

perfect weather in brissy this morning. legs are still smashed so i just cruised
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby FiveDaysAWeek » Tue Sep 16, 2014 9:19 am

find_bruce wrote:So my new safe cycling strategy is to find a 30 tonne wingman :D


I need to find a way to get one of those into the car park where work's bike cage resides, bit of a free-for-all yesterday and this morning. Actually, just getting it stuck in the entrance would do the trick.
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby Summernight » Tue Sep 16, 2014 10:04 am

fat and old wrote:One thing I noticed riding in the car home last night is how frustrated I get with the traffic. I knew I hated it, but it was a real eye opener. Since ditching the car totally earlier this year I've really calmed down a lot :D


It's a lot nicer than being a sardine in a packed tram/train as well. :)

Way overdressed on the way home last night.

The office building wasn't letting me leave last night either - all the lifts going to the carpark where my bike was were all out of order. Clearly people before me had tried them as well as all the lights in the elevator for each floor were lit up, but they were going nowhere.

I took the stairs and then had to make my way carefully down the steep car park ramp in cleats to get to the bike. Then, upon opening the exit door (as the car garage door can't be opened from the inside anymore) I find a car has decided to park itself over the no-parking area and block my exit, meaning I had to manoeuver my bike down the steps, beside, up and over that car as there wasn't even enough room to wheel it beside or for me to walk beside the car and wall without twisting and leaning on the car. Clearly I was meant to sleep at work last night... :roll:

This morning I called a warning to the cyclist in front of me on the corner of Albert and Hoddle Streets as the ute who overtook both me and him put on his left turning indicator while he was behind the cyclist in front and then proceeded to overtake the cyclist just as we entered the intersection, causing a classic example of a left hook. The cyclist thanked me for the warning and we went on our way.
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby TailWind » Tue Sep 16, 2014 10:52 am

fat and old wrote:Therefore, those stoopid fences are probably still up, although I spoke to a council fella yesterday and he agrees that the path itself should be open, said to call back today to see how he went. Maybe some joy, who knows?

More than that, all of the fencing was fully erected again - all your work undone :(

Good rides otherwise yesterday afternoon and this morning.
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby westab » Tue Sep 16, 2014 12:11 pm

What a great morning for a ride -enjoyed it.

Lots of birds about including one "friendly magpie" in a new area in Western Sydney Parklands. (actually the maggie has probably been there a long time they have just open a new path).
My usually friendly finches gave me the typical escort then promptly vanished - I thought that strange till the typical sound of swooping bird; then I understood. I have no issue with the magpie - they are only doing what I would do if I thought my young were at risk.

Still might go another way for a month - then we can be friends again.
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby fat and old » Wed Sep 17, 2014 5:16 am

Well yesterday's ride home was wet. Stupid fences all back up with zip ties now, but the rain was heavy enough to convince me I'd rather get home :lol: New magpie, in the same parklands. Real kamikaze too...gimmee a decent poc on the head. M80 had a go too.

First real drama in 5 months......a bus decided to try and use a roundabout at the same time as me :shock: This is not a large roundabout either...I can't do fancy linkys but it's at Sycamore and Roycroft Ave in Mill Park (We were heading north along Roycroft). I watch as he pulls up level with me, I watch as he draws ahead, I yell and gesticulate violently as he's not backing off, eventually after a few gentle taps on his door he backs off. Close enough to belt his door! And he can't miss me....I'm like a bright flouro Michelin man on the bike :lol: .

Got home and called the bus company to explain my anger, apparently as far as they're concerned the law says 1m minimum clearance for bicycles, so he's in the wrong. I thought that that 1m rule was only law in Qld, but the company insists that Vic Roads has issued a direction that 1m clearance is the law. :? Not complaining, but I wasn't aware of this. Seems good to me though. Might ask the question in General.
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby jasonc » Wed Sep 17, 2014 8:01 am

f&o - my multi-tool has a knife
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby kbekus » Wed Sep 17, 2014 9:11 am

hey all, long time lurker, first time poster :) I have a question for the group.... what's the consensus on undertaking? And does it matter what the circumstance is? i.e. rolling along versus pulling up to a stop?
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby bychosis » Wed Sep 17, 2014 9:11 am

And if zip ties aren't done up too tight they aren't that hard to undo either if you've got fingernails.

THis mornings commute was going to be an early extended bush ride, but the son was up too early so cut it short but managed to get out in the mud/dust for a bit. First morning of the season with a proper summer sweat too, it's getting warmer.

I passed two parked cars this morning with drivers in the seat, as I passed I thought lucky they didn't open the door, im a bit close. Then later a car actually did fling the door open without looking gave me a bit of a fright and I swerved, but I was out of here door zone being on a quiet street and moseying along nice and wide. Note to self: watch for doorings.

Also had a ute pass to closely as I wasn't concentrating properly. Morning for warnings.
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby find_bruce » Wed Sep 17, 2014 9:13 am

Met the driver of a bully bus who decided to give me a piece of his mind - remarkably generous as he didn't appear to have much to spare.

It would seem that he was upset that I waited until the first access point before I crossed the road to join the bike path. My answer was directed in a language unexpected, and while it was perhaps a little more colourful than strictly necessary, I think he got the message.
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby fat and old » Wed Sep 17, 2014 9:46 am

kbekus wrote:hey all, long time lurker, first time poster :) I have a question for the group.... what's the consensus on undertaking? And does it matter what the circumstance is? i.e. rolling along versus pulling up to a stop?


Undertaking what? A car? Cool, go for it. A bike? dunno.....if it was me and there's plenty of space, cool. Not much space, not cool. But 2 minutes later and I'd forget it happened.
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby CXCommuter » Wed Sep 17, 2014 11:12 am

fat and old wrote:
kbekus wrote:hey all, long time lurker, first time poster :) I have a question for the group.... what's the consensus on undertaking? And does it matter what the circumstance is? i.e. rolling along versus pulling up to a stop?


Undertaking what? A car? Cool, go for it. A bike? dunno.....if it was me and there's plenty of space, cool. Not much space, not cool. But 2 minutes later and I'd forget it happened.


Undertaking other cyclists is very poor form and if on a cycleway/shard path pretty dangerous/silly IMHO. Undertaking cars is fine as long as aware of dooring/turning vehicles- it can be hard to see indicators when alongside a car.
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby TailWind » Wed Sep 17, 2014 11:13 am

Early departure out of the CBD yesterday, just before noon, in order to dial into a conference at a time that would conflict with my regular commute time slot.
Seems traffic and traffic light patterns are quite different at this time. Was drizzled and rained on for most of the commute.

Another two maggies have become active on my route. Heading north on the DCT, the first one is now swooping about 400m south of Settlement Rd, under the powerlines and near the playground at Holt Park. He's a wing slapper and quite aggressive, as f&o mentioned above. The section between Settlement Rd and Rathcown Rd, where the path ends, is "Magpie Alley". At least another 2 birds will come online there anytime now, and one of them enjoys full body contact :mrgreen: .
The second bird chased me up Plenty Rd and operates just short of Childs Rd. This one is a screamer - he emits a blood-curdling screech with each swoop.

The M80 magpie is also still in good form.

Then there's still the McKimmies road maggie just opposite the RMIT campus, so before long, I'll have six birds entertaining me on my route. :shock:

This morning there was more rain and drizzle, which thankfully abated about 5km from the office, so I was barely damp when I pulled into the bike cage.
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby Summernight » Wed Sep 17, 2014 11:15 am

kbekus wrote:hey all, long time lurker, first time poster :) I have a question for the group.... what's the consensus on undertaking? And does it matter what the circumstance is? i.e. rolling along versus pulling up to a stop?


Welcome. As F&O said - depends on the situation. If you are referring to a bicycle - if there is a gap on the left and the bicycle is stopped at the lights (with no chance of that bicycle going in the near future), I see no problem in moving up to the left of them to also wait at the traffic light.

If the bicycle is moving I think the safest course is to make sure you overtake on the right, but this also depends on where you are riding (ie. road vs shared path). On the road I wouldn't undertake a moving bicycle as they could move left at any time. On a shared path I might undertake to the left if the bicycle rider is riding on the wrong side of the path, but only if I was going walking pace or slower with my foot down and ready to stop.

I also wouldn't undertake a jogger/walker/person-with-dog on a shared path - too much chance of them hearing you and moving into your space. Of course this can also happen in an overtake on a shared path too.

* * * * *
Last night, after losing our sporting match that my team and I played at MSAC, I headed home on ze trusty bike. It was 8PM and not much traffic to speak of. I was riding down Park Street, South Melbourne. I had just done a right hook turn from Clarendon (as the road markings require it) and for some reason I was in Zen Mode (nothing was really bothering me, even though we had lost our match when we should play better than we did and I was carrying both my heavy D-locks and chain because I hadn't wanted my bike stolen when parked at MSAC so the bike was a couple of kgs heavier than usual).

Numpty in a van believes I should get out of his way. He's honking, shouting, swearing, flashing his lights. Thing was, I was claiming the lane because there was no bike lane, parked cars on the left and a moving tram on my right and the road wasn't wide enough for a bike and a van to be safely side by side. We come up to a red light at Moray Street so I'm still claiming the lane and almost stopped for said light. I realise as I'm slowing that I hadn't shifted into a easier gear for the takeoff when the lights turn green so am REALLY slow at the takeoff. Well... Mr Van Driver just can't take it anymore and goes crazy.

Clip (warning: language):



I was surprised at how zen I was. And completely ignoring him and making no indication I'd seen him flashing his lights, shouting at me, revving his engine, coming up close or honking his horn actually felt quite good. I need to keep harnessing this Zen Mode. :D

This morning those same D-locks were really sucking the energy right out of me during my ride. But I guess it is good exercise riding with heavier weights on the bike. It will be nice to ride home tonight with no extra weight. :D
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby jasonc » Wed Sep 17, 2014 11:54 am

forgot to mention, my legs are absolutely smashed. hopefully they start improving from this arvo and they can't get any worse (can they?)
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby westab » Wed Sep 17, 2014 3:37 pm

jasonc wrote:forgot to mention, my legs are absolutely smashed. hopefully they start improving from this arvo and they can't get any worse (can they?)


can they? yes they can mate. Mine were smashed after Saturday (had to take tools to little a's to repair equipment and the mrs changed her mind about not needing the car) - I thought they can't get worse then last night the cat (again my Mrs - I hate the thing) decided to lie on them half the night and they are now worse. Bummer.

Still was a really nice commute in this morning - even with the headwind. Which has now shifted; still looking forward to the ride home and the late night ride to to test the new lights I am looking to setup.
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby jasonc » Wed Sep 17, 2014 3:54 pm

I can't remember my legs feeling this bad in a looooong time.
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby wellington_street » Wed Sep 17, 2014 6:06 pm

Summernight wrote:
kbekus wrote:hey all, long time lurker, first time poster :) I have a question for the group.... what's the consensus on undertaking? And does it matter what the circumstance is? i.e. rolling along versus pulling up to a stop?


Welcome. As F&O said - depends on the situation. If you are referring to a bicycle - if there is a gap on the left and the bicycle is stopped at the lights (with no chance of that bicycle going in the near future), I see no problem in moving up to the left of them to also wait at the traffic light.

If the bicycle is moving I think the safest course is to make sure you overtake on the right, but this also depends on where you are riding (ie. road vs shared path). On the road I wouldn't undertake a moving bicycle as they could move left at any time. On a shared path I might undertake to the left if the bicycle rider is riding on the wrong side of the path, but only if I was going walking pace or slower with my foot down and ready to stop.

I also wouldn't undertake a jogger/walker/person-with-dog on a shared path - too much chance of them hearing you and moving into your space. Of course this can also happen in an overtake on a shared path too.

I would add that if you're going to pass me on either a road or a path, please ring your bell so I know you're there.
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby TigerFilly » Wed Sep 17, 2014 6:37 pm

Horrendous head wind on Monday. The first part of my trip home is slightly downhill, and I was barely moving. The next bit is slightly uphill and I was so disinclined to do it with the head wind that I rode two sides of a triangle instead of one so that the uphill bit was not into the headwind. I should emphasise it really is only a slight gradient so it was a bit sooky, but it was a very strong wind.

Today was a bit ho hum. Uneventful which I suppose is good.
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Re: How was your commute ... today, yesterday, last week ...

Postby jasonc » Wed Sep 17, 2014 7:14 pm

there's road work on the western fwy bikeway. at each end of the roadworks there are lollypop people through the day (and traffic lights at night). So I'm stopped at the waverly rd overpass end of the roadwork. And a bloke in his 50s stopped behind me. He was making the worst noises I've ever heard. I turned around and asked him if he wanted an ambulance. He replied that it was asthma related. Unfortunately it was the longest stop I've had there in a long time (at least 8 minutes). Very unpleasant. To top it off, I got stopped with him at the Moggil Rd lights. If you're on here, whatever the doctor is giving you is hopeless. Go see a different doctor or something
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