Archive for the ‘Street Bicycles’ Category
Bicycles are fun for everyone,
Whoever you are !
Not only is it a wonderful way to get around, it provides you with your daily dosage of exertion and activity as well. So while Bicycles have principally been a means of transport for a long time now, that is no longer the case.
Bikes keep you fit. Bicycles can add adventure to your day. Bicycles also keep the surroundings cleaner. And for the more self righteous ones – bikes make you feel like you are doing the world a favour!
What to consider:
So you’ve decided to buy a bicycle, now the first thing you’ve got ask yourself is:
* Who’s going to be using it?
* What it will be used for?
* How much are you willing to spend on it?
and Most Important…
* Your Reason for buying a Bicycle
Among many bicycle lovers, while most choose to bicycle casually, either to school, university or even work; some more adventurous ones have also been a part of stunt biking groups, professional cycling clubs or mountain biking associations.
Cycling is a great hobby and with so many options to choose from, you can decide how best you associate with this great invention! However, before you jump to any of that, you do need a bicycle. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when purchasing a bike either for your kids or for yourself.
Purchasing a bicycle for your toddler
So you’ve decided to initiate your toddler to the wonderful world of cycling; now the right time to get your toddler a two wheel bike is when they have reached age 3. By this age, kids have properly developed motor skills as well as a sense of balance and self sufficiency.
Buying a bike for your child requires some research. Just knowing the brand and the colour preference is not enough. The bike needs to be comfortable enough for the child to ride, especially if the child is starting out learning to ride a bike.
Bicycle sizes are classified via the size of the wheel. There are recommended wheel sizes for all age groups.
When purchasing a bike for your child, pick the bike with the correct wheel size of 12 or 14 inches. Take your child with you for bike shopping. Make sure her legs reach the floor. When riding a bike, this will give the child more self confidence.
Also make sure you purchase a pair of detachable side wheels for training her so she can learn to balance. Another important thing to keep in mind is to purchase a bike that is light in weight. Since you toddler is learning to ride, chances are she might fall a few times. And a heavy bike will worsen the experience.
So while it is a bit more expensive, it is worth the investment. And while you are at it, don’t forget to purchase a cycling helmet!
Bicylce for kids in their pre-teens and teens
By the time your kids are in pre-teens or in their teens, they will have mastered the art of riding a bike and would have long outgrown the toddler bike.
Now is the time for something different!
Since they are a bit grown up, they will want more say in the purchase decision.
It is best to get to know what it is they are looking for. Now, remember, kids might want the world, but you are working with a budget.
So make sure your child is aware of it before hand so he can do his bit of research as well within that budget.
(a big word, but here’s what it means)
In this age group, most kids will use the bicyle to go to school and for after school activities like meeting friends, taking part in local racing competitions etc.
Consider the ergonomics of the bicycle. Make sure the handle bars are not too close to the seat as it will exhaust your child quite easily. And ensure that the seats are comfortable.
The ideal wheel size for a pre-teenager’s bike is 18-22 inches. Make sure bikes for your young teen have coaster breaks for additional safety. Teenagers can use the same bike size used by adults, which is a standard 24 inches.
Take your children with you so they can test ride the bikes before finally choosing one which fits their requirements and your budget.
Read more about Bicycle Ergonomics Here
Also, don’t forget to accessorize.
Items like extra headlights, water-bottle, reflectors, mirrors, radio etc. will personalize the bike for your child.
Considerations when purchasing a bicycle for adults
The ideal bike size for adults is 24 inches. When purchasing such a bicycle, ask yourself a couple of basic questions.
Is the bike for casual riding or exercising or for a special hobby like mountain biking or for sports?
You can opt for a single gear or multi-gear bike giving you the convenience of varying speed limits, based on where you are riding it. These days road bikes offer speed ranges of 12 to 21, to choose from. Another important thing to look for is adjustable seats and handle-bars.
Before you make a final purchase, test ride a couple of bikes since unlike kids, you are not likely to outgrow the bike you purchase.This also means you should go for something that is not just sturdy but also light.
Today, there are different brands with various models of bikes catering to all these specific requirements.
Based on your requirement, choose the right Street Bicycle for your needs.
Thanks for your helpful Insight Mr Marco Terrell
If you played word association with Joe and Jane Random, how would they respond to Critical Mass?
In 1934, Hungarian phycisist Leó Szilárd filed his patent for a neutron-induced nuclear chain reaction and introduced the concept of “critical mass.” The critical mass is the smallest amount of fissile material needed for a sustained nuclear chain reaction.
Nearly 60 years later, bike designer George Bliss remarked in a documentary that bicycles would queue up at intersections in large Chinese cities until they built up to a “critical mass,” when they would proceed safely across en masse. San Francisco cyclists soon applied that name for their monthly “Commute Clog” ride.
More recently, other large spontaneous group rides began to appear. “Bike Party” is among the more popular of these offshoots from Critical Mass. How do the two compare in Google Trends over the past nine years?
The problem with my quick comparison: We really don’t know the context when people search for “Critical Mass.” Do they want an online guide to building weapons of mass destruction? Do they mean “critical mass” in terms of a tipping point? Or do they look for information on the monthly bike rides? All I know is that incognito search on Google results mostly in bike ride results.
You’ll see I’ve compared against “Bike Party” and “Martyn Ashton.” To me, Bike Party is the monthly celebration of cycling that now occurs in several cities around the world. Martyn Ashton’s “Road Bike Party” trials riding video skewed the search results late in 2012. We can see significantly more interest in his sequel video, represented by the yellow line going sharply up at the right side of the above graph.
Something else interesting: We have searches for “critical mass” (in English) in Leó Szilárd’s home country of Hungary at 10 times the levels we see in America. Furthermore, we see this interest peaks suddenly and dramatically every April and September.
What is going on? Do Hungarian children learn about their countryman’s role in developing nuclear physics? Do they test on the topic every Spring and Autumn?
I dug around and learned Hungary claims the world’s largest Critical Mass ride with tens of thousands of riders. Interest and participation is very high.
Digging more, this Hungarian Critical Mass is an organized biannual ride with official road closures. It seems akin to something like Chicago’s Bike the Drive, the Five Boro Tour in New York City, or even a bike-centric Ciclovia type of event.
What does Critical Mass mean to you?
Americans variously see Critical Mass as a spontaneous celebration of bikes, a protest against automotive culture, or a group of scofflaws on bikes causing trouble and giving cyclists a bad name. In Hungary — the country of the nuclear physicist who invented the term — Critical Mass is an organized celebration of bikes on roads officially closed from traffic.
Google Trends is a handy tool to show interest in terms of how often people search for stuff. Here’s the graph for the USA and California showing how often people searched for “bicycle” from 2004 through 2013.
We see sharp peaks during mid-summer in California and nationwide. The interesting thing to me: an apparent decline in online interest over the years, in spite of increased levels of cycling.
This varying interest is more apparent when you drill down to a specific region. We see a sharp decline in the San Francisco Bay Area, for example, from 2009 to 2011 before interest shoots back up, though never to the peaks for 2004 and 2005.
Any insight to what this apparently means? Is this an artifact of greater interest in non-Google social media platforms and less interest in search? Or perhaps more time in the saddle means less time in front of the computer screen?
Let’s play with a few other topics:
- “bike share” – U.S. interest seems to begin about 2007, whereas Google doesn’t track any interest from California until late in 2010.
- “copenhagen wheel” – We see initial mention in 2009, and then boom it went viral this year.
- “lance armstrong”
More bicycle stories below the photo of cycling teens in decidedly warmer San Jose, CA.
The truth about the “dangers” of winter cycling.
Carnage: Biking In LA says those are cyclists in the street who narrowly avoided death after a Corvette crashed at Olympic Blvd and Los Angeles Street during a high speed police pursuit.
“Modelling studies have generally concluded that regular cyclists live longer because the health effects of cycling far outweigh the risk of crashes,” says the abstract for this study at the BMJ. Via Patric.
How to tell wind speed while cycling.
Do you remember Lance Armstrong? Besides doping, he’s also been accused of buying a race — the crucial final race of the 1993 Triple Crown series that resulted in a million dollar payout for Armstrong. Now Roberto Gaggioli has come forward to say that he and his team received $100,000 from Armstrong to fix the CoreStates USPRO national championship in Philadelphia and allow him to win that final race. Steven Ilford, who raced that day in Philadelphia, writes about what he remembers as a weird race. Via Byron @ Bike Hugger.
Traffic Safety: Bay Area intersections redone to be safer for pedestrians. Motorist response: “Pedestrian safety is for morons.”
Sad news in Aptos: the body found in the water last week http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/santacruz/ci_24726592/body-found-at-seacliff-beach-confirmed-missing-aptos">is confirmed to be that of a 17 year old boy who left home on his bike to go on an adventure.
Tranform’s proposal to get more throughput on Highway 101 through San Mateo County while spending less than what the county proposes.
Young Bay Area couples seek out high density housing near transit.
Last Saturday, I was just riding along in beautiful 68 degree sunny weather on Brommer Street in Santa Cruz when I shot a photo of Jamie Bianchini towing his son Luca in a bike trailer. I uploaded the photo to Google Plus. Google then applied “autoawesome” to the image to overlay animated snow flakes over Jamie, his bike, and the passing Honda.
You now have photographic proof of my winter cycling expertise.
It was about 35 degrees F / 2 degrees C with frost on car windshields when I left the house Saturday morning, and my friends in Santa Clara County tell me there was substantial ice on the road up Mount Hamilton. By noon, though, things had warmed up to a balmy 70 degrees along the coast. This might surprise you, but winter is surf season in California and sure enough we had plenty of surfers at Pleasure Point in Capitola over the weekend.
Because the day starts chilly but quickly warms to reasonable temperatures, removing your jacket is an important cycling skill. Here’s how I do it.
Remember: always wear a helmet for safety when riding alongside traffic with your hands bound up in your jacket.
Jamie, by the way, spent eight years riding a bike around the world. Unlike your usual dull everyday “I biked around the world” story (who hasn’t done this, right?), Jamie did something different: he used a tandem bike and let people ride along as hitch hikers. One of these hitch hikers eventually became his wife. You can read his story at Peace Pedalers.
Meet Jamie Bianchini of Santa Cruz.
I saw Jamie riding his bike Saturday afternoon distributing his 2014 Tide & Light Calendars to local businesses in the vicinity of Brommer and 17th in Santa Cruz.
This calendar shows times for sunrise and sunset along with time and depth of high tide and low tide each day, featuring the work of local artists and photographers. Each month also shows an example of some of our local Santa Cruz surf action and ocean life.
Anyone who loves ocean sports, boating, beaches, tide pools, sunsets, nature and spending lots of time outdoors will love this calendar. For you Santa Cruz people, this is also a nice gift to send to your friends to let them know what they’re missing out on. If you buy this calendar as a gift, jump on it right away to allow for shipping time. Local pickup is also available in Santa Cruz.
More info and to buy –> Tide & Light Calendar.
The Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District (SMAQMD) has approved nearly $4 million for a regional bike share program for Sacramento, West Sacramento and Davis.
The city of Sacramento and the SMAQMD have partnered with Sacramento Regional Transit District (RT), Sacramento Area Council of Governments (SACOG), the Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority, the City of West Sacramento, the City of Davis, UC Davis, the Yolo County Transportation District (YCTD), and the Yolo-Solano Air Quality Management District on a regional bike share plan. They propose 616 bicycles spread across 88 stations between the three cities. 69 stations are proposed for the city of Sacramento, concentrated mostly in the Downtown and Midtown districts of the capital city. Nine more stations are proposed for the city of West Sacramento, which is easily accessible by bike from Downtown Sacramento via the Tower Bridge. Finally, another 10 stations are planned for the city of Davis and the UC-Davis campus, which lies 15 miles west of downtown Sacramento.
Like other bike share systems, the regional bike share proposed for Sacramento includes paid annual memberships as well as shorter term options. The initial 30 minutes of usage is free for members, with increasing costs beyond that time limit to discourage long term usage. Bikes can be returned at any bike share station, which are automated.
At their board of the directors meeting last week, SMAQMD also recommended:
- $1.65M for the $2.5M Freeport Boulevard Road Diet project, a 4/3 lane reduction project that replaces the existing four lanes on Freeport Blvd with two general lanes, and a median turn lane between Sutterville Rd and 4th Ave. Bike lanes will be added along with bus turnouts.
- $1.5M for two bike trail projects in Folsom. The board approved $747K for construction of a cycle track along Leidesdorff St and Riley St to close a 1,000 foot gap in the Lake Natoma Regional Trail. Another $779K has been allocated to construct a bicycle / pedestrian undercrossing to connect the Johnny Cash / Folsom Prison Trail to the Powerhouse Canal Trail at East Natoma Street and Folsom Prison Access Road.
- The city of Citrus Heights receives $1.4M for a ten foot sidepath along Old Auburn Road.
- $1.6M to improve bicycle & pedestrian access for Rancho Cordova Elementary School.
- Another $4M to the city of Rancho Cordova for a Complete Streets project.
- $1.4M for a “bicycle mobility project” along Fair Oaks Blvd in Sacramento County.
Via Melody Stone, the bike riding digital content producer for Capital Public Radio in Sacramento.
SJ Rides has organized an alleycat race to benefit Sacred Heart Community Services.
You can click the “Join” button on this Facebook event page but pre-registration is not required.
Show up at 11:30 AM tomorrow, Saturday December 14, 2013 at San Jose City Hall to register for the race and receive your manifest.
Organizers say they’ll have two races: cargo and speed.
Speed race is exactly what it sounds like: Buy specific food items from the designated grocery stores and get to the finish as soon as possible. A point system will be used to score racers based on number of stores visited and items collected. Please don’t get yourself killed. You’ll need an estimated $15 to $30 to buy the items on the list.
The person who returns with the heaviest load of food wins the cargo race. Get your friends and family to donate some cash to help you with this one. For either race, it helps to bring a friend to watch your bike so you don’t need to lock it for each store visit.
Info –> SJRides.com/mash4potatoes. Mash for potatoes – get it?
Happy Friday, all, and happy 12 days until Christmas.
I’m working up my list of top bike stories for 2013. I’ll mention Armstrong’s appearance on Oprah, Levi Leiphiemer’s retirement, California bike politics, and, of course, Roubaixgate, along with several other stories. What else should I mention?
More bike news below.
I’ve somehow missed that the city of Menlo Park, CA requires bicycle licenses for everybody who bikes through town, contrary to state law. State law only authorizes cities to require bike licenses for city residents.
It is unlawful for any person to operate or use a bicycle propelled wholly or in part by muscular power upon any of the streets, alleys or public highways of the city, without first obtaining from the police department of the city a license to do so.
Winter bike to work day in Ft. Collins, Colorado draws hundreds despite the cold. The temperature was a frigid 10°F/-12°C during the morning commute, rising to a relatively balmy 20°F/-7°C for the evening ride home.
You know Martyn Ashton? He’s the guy who does trials riding on a road bike in the famous “Road Bike Party” video. I just heard the other day that he broke his last September while performing one of his stunts and is now a paraplegic.
The sequel to Road Bike Party, “Road Bike Party 2,” features Ashton along with Chris Akrigg and Danny Macaskill.
Bay Area Carnage: Driver in a Hummer rear ends a Jeep Cherokee on I-580 in Livermore, CA, killing the Jeep driver as both vehicles burst into flames. The crash closed traffic in all lanes and both directions of I-580, with westbound I-580 closed for four hours as officials cleared the mess and drivers sat it out.
CHP says driver of Hummer may have been intoxicated. Hummer crashed into Jeep which killed driver. I-580 pic.twitter.com/JNhsuHwaBF
— Lyanne Melendez (@LyanneMelendez) December 12, 2013
Endurance sports at the mid-century point of your life.
Uh Oh: London Bike Share losing riders and sponsorship.
Recall: Trek Madone front brakes can detach and create a crash hazard.
Bicycle offers freedom for injured war vet in Stockton, CA.
Streetsblog.net: Why cyclists love green bike lanes.
Cute holiday ad from Jamis Bicycles.
Satire: Get pedestrians off of the road to improve driver safety in Toronto.
Kent Peterson rides a scooter.
Residential developments with no parking springing up in Boston, Seattle and Miami, FL.
Guess which of these is the bike commuter? View the full “Traffic Talk” comic over at Bike Face.
Scientific American: How much healthier is New York City after Mike Bloomberg’s 12 year run as mayor of America’s largest city?
Meeting: Friends of Caltrain meeting 7 PM, Monday December 16 at San Carlos Library to discuss the role of bikes and other improvements for Caltrain. Keep up to date on Caltrain issues at Green Caltrain.
Have a good weekend all. And please let me know if you have suggestions for top bike stories of 2013. Thanks!