Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > General Cycling Discussion
Reload this Page >

Bells or voice - give a guy/gal/child a break

Notices
General Cycling Discussion Have a cycling related question or comment that doesn't fit in one of the other specialty forums? Drop on in and post in here! When possible, please select the forum above that most fits your post!

Bells or voice - give a guy/gal/child a break

Old 04-25-21, 05:51 PM
  #1  
SeniorCanadian
Old but still riding
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Vancouver
Posts: 13

Bikes: Specialized Sequoia and Surly LHT

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Liked 9 Times in 5 Posts
Bells or voice - give a guy/gal/child a break

I was sorry to see the previous thread closed ostensibly, because of some vitriol.

I was about to respond to the thread both as a rider and as a pedestrian. Earlier this week I was walking on a MUP and was surprised how effective a bike bell can be and how I was surprised when a cyclist came by without warning.

I have a bell on both of my bikes and use them freely, sometimes combining with my voice "On your left" or "On your right" as the situation warrants. My personal experience definitely supported the practice. I often get a "thanks" in response.
SeniorCanadian is offline  
Likes For SeniorCanadian:
Old 04-25-21, 05:56 PM
  #2  
Sy Reene
Advocatus Diaboli
 
Sy Reene's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Wherever I am
Posts: 7,357

Bikes: Merlin Cyrene, Nashbar steel CX

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3933 Post(s)
Liked 971 Times in 651 Posts
Any runners out there that run in the street? Do you prefer that each car that passes you honks?
Sy Reene is offline  
Old 04-25-21, 06:20 PM
  #3  
Troul 
:D
 
Troul's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Mich
Posts: 4,355
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6 Post(s)
Liked 1,105 Times in 793 Posts
Originally Posted by Sy Reene View Post
Any runners out there that run in the street? Do you prefer that each car that passes you honks?
Wait, what, you don't crank the window down as you come up on a cement truck & yell "Hey! ON YURRR LEFT!111!!" as you floor it going around while using the grassy shoulder?
__________________
-Oh Hey!
Troul is offline  
Likes For Troul:
Old 04-25-21, 06:28 PM
  #4  
Ironfish653
Dirty Heathen
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: MC-778, 6250 fsw
Posts: 1,519

Bikes: 1997 Cannondale, 1976 Bridgestone, 1998 Softride

Mentioned: 17 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 563 Post(s)
Liked 304 Times in 206 Posts
Originally Posted by Sy Reene View Post
Any runners out there that run in the street? Do you prefer that each car that passes you honks?
No. In the street, you run facing traffic, so overtaking vehicles are on the opposite side of the road. Did you really not know that, or are you trying to be obtuse?

On the bike, I find that a bell is good for alerting other MUP users; it carries farther than voice, and is easily recognizable as 'bike'It's also non-confrontational; I'm not one of those 'serious' cyclists who feels it's necessary to tell at pedestrians.
Ironfish653 is offline  
Old 04-25-21, 06:31 PM
  #5  
Daniel4
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Toronto
Posts: 2,596

Bikes: Sekine 1979 ten speed racer

Mentioned: 15 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1005 Post(s)
Liked 207 Times in 146 Posts
Originally Posted by SeniorCanadian View Post
I was sorry to see the previous thread closed ostensibly, because of some vitriol.

...
It's starting already.
Daniel4 is offline  
Likes For Daniel4:
Old 04-25-21, 06:32 PM
  #6  
70sSanO
Senior Member
 
70sSanO's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Mission Viejo
Posts: 3,846

Bikes: 1986 Cannondale SR400 (Flat bar commuter), 1988 Cannondale Criterium XTR, 1992 Serotta T-Max, 1995 Trek 970

Mentioned: 16 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1146 Post(s)
Liked 991 Times in 645 Posts
I will say that over the years I never really walked on a MUP. When I did I was a bit surprised at being bombed by cyclists out of nowhere. It did give me an appreciation that a warning is helpful as well as not ripping by at 20+ mph.

John
70sSanO is offline  
Likes For 70sSanO:
Old 04-25-21, 06:40 PM
  #7  
indyfabz
Senior Member
 
indyfabz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 31,084
Mentioned: 200 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 13770 Post(s)
Liked 6,716 Times in 3,383 Posts
indyfabz is offline  
Likes For indyfabz:
Old 04-25-21, 06:41 PM
  #8  
wgscott
Occam's Rotor
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 7,174
Mentioned: 61 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2366 Post(s)
Liked 2,264 Times in 1,129 Posts
The ring of a bell basically says "get the hell out of my way" to most people who don't expire from a coronary arrest when some sanctimonious zealot cycles up behind them to deploy their noise-maker.

If you want to go around someone on a MUP, it is up to you to give them clearance, not the other way around. If you think startling a bunch of pedestrians who are just strolling along and innocently discussing quantum measurement theory and Bell's Inequality, or the latest Instagram influencer's body odor is doing them a favor, you need to think about it some more, and pass them (if at all) more politely.



.

Last edited by wgscott; 04-25-21 at 06:49 PM.
wgscott is offline  
Likes For wgscott:
Old 04-25-21, 06:44 PM
  #9  
indyfabz
Senior Member
 
indyfabz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 31,084
Mentioned: 200 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 13770 Post(s)
Liked 6,716 Times in 3,383 Posts
Originally Posted by Ironfish653 View Post
In the street, you run facing traffic
Not if there is a sidewalk.
indyfabz is offline  
Likes For indyfabz:
Old 04-25-21, 06:46 PM
  #10  
AdkMtnMonster
Airplanes, bikes, beer.
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Location: Off the front
Posts: 714

Bikes: Road bikes, mountain bikes, a gravel bike…

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 381 Post(s)
Liked 746 Times in 320 Posts
"I've got a fever, and the only cure is more cowbell, baby!"
AdkMtnMonster is offline  
Likes For AdkMtnMonster:
Old 04-25-21, 06:51 PM
  #11  
wgscott
Occam's Rotor
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 7,174
Mentioned: 61 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2366 Post(s)
Liked 2,264 Times in 1,129 Posts
Originally Posted by seniorcanadian View Post
i was sorry to see the previous thread closed ostensibly, because of my trolling.

fify
wgscott is offline  
Likes For wgscott:
Old 04-25-21, 06:58 PM
  #12  
GlennR
On Your Left
 
GlennR's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Long Island, New York, USA
Posts: 8,264

Bikes: Trek Emonda SLR, Sram eTap, Zipp 303

Mentioned: 34 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2919 Post(s)
Liked 2,273 Times in 1,113 Posts
I have a MUP 2 miles from my house and know when to avoid it and when it's OK to ride.

The MUPs have a technical speed limit of 15mph. When it's nice out there can be a lot of walkers with kids and dogs. Sure i can bully my way through yelling "ON YOUR LEFT" all the time, but honestly it's not safe or fun.

Today was perfect, it stopped raining an hour before I headed out and it was on the cold side. I took the path and maybe passed a dozen others on a 7 mile stretch. On a nice Sunday afternoon i'd have to pass the same dozen in 100 yards. On those days I just take the streets.

Same with a MUP that runs down tot he beach for 5 miles and then heads east for 21 miles. Once you get past the first mile you can ride as you like, but that first mile can be crowded, so be prepared to go slow.

And many walkers and casual riders have music playing so a bell or calling out is a waste of time.

It doesn't matter who has the right of way or is at fault, if there's a collision you can get hurt.. so be responsible and careful.
GlennR is offline  
Likes For GlennR:
Old 04-25-21, 07:11 PM
  #13  
kirbyx
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 74
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 24 Post(s)
Liked 15 Times in 9 Posts
When I'm out walking, I find that the yell "on your left" requires me to think...
" What are they talking about". Um, er... something is coming up from behind me? Perhaps?
Then I have to think...
"Which side is my left side?" Takes me a while. Really.
Then I have to think...
"What am I supposed to do?" Um, er, keep walking in a straight line? turn around? stop?
By the time I've had all these thoughts, the cyclist has usually blown past me without slowing down, and usually pretty close.
Many (but not all) cyclists seem to think that by yelling "On your left" they have fulfilled all their responsibilities and can forget about everyones safety.
And some yell it when they are about five feet behind me while moving at 20 mph.
How about slowing down, giving everyone room, and maybe "Bike behind you"?
kirbyx is offline  
Likes For kirbyx:
Old 04-25-21, 07:23 PM
  #14  
gregf83 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 9,202
Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1185 Post(s)
Liked 286 Times in 174 Posts
I don't normally ride on MUPs but do use a 1 mile section to transition under a highway. Riding today, when I came across a family with 2 little kids I slowed down to walking speed and made my way around the kids. Ringing a bell in that situation would just be annoying to the family. A little farther along there were two women walking away from me on the right side. I took the far left side of the path with at least 6 ft between us. Again a bell would have been unnecessary and annoying.

I find it's better to just ride at an appropriate speed and not expect everyone to be jumping out of my way when ringing a bell.
gregf83 is offline  
Old 04-25-21, 07:27 PM
  #15  
OldTryGuy
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: SW Fl.
Posts: 5,203

Bikes: Day6 Semi Recumbent "FIREBALL", 1981 Custom Touring Paramount, 1983 Road Paramount, 2013 Giant Propel Advanced SL3, 2018 Specialized Red Roubaix Expert mech., 2002 Magna 7sp hybrid, 1976 Bassett Racing 45sp Cruiser

Mentioned: 16 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 912 Post(s)
Liked 472 Times in 315 Posts
A bell is on each of my bikes. When on a trail if I can not see beyond a turn I ring the bell BEFORE THE TURN alerting anybody/dogs that I am approaching. Over the years this has resulted in people often commenting with "Thank You" along with a smile as we meet around the bend. On open areas I ring as I approach from the rear AND ALSO INFORM with "Passing on your left." This combination also can result with a "Thank You" or a simple "Wave Of The Hand" as the person moves over. What is strange is when I approach from the front and am seen by people walking towards me, there are times when one goes right and the other left instead of getting INLINE. Not only is that move not smart, it results in reducing the allowable distance of passage.


Ringing a bell EVEN LIGHTLY will often result in some form of recognition by a dog BEFORE THE PERSON because the dog's hearing is often better.


My bells are old Schwinn Approved Bells from the '70's.
OldTryGuy is offline  
Old 04-25-21, 07:27 PM
  #16  
Parkyy16
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Texas
Posts: 58

Bikes: Breadwinner B-Road, Ritchey Road Logic Disc, Velo-Orange Neutrino

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 26 Post(s)
Liked 26 Times in 17 Posts
I find that the reaction to the bell depends on the bike I'm riding and the speed I'm riding. If I'm riding my upright bike with a front basket at or below 15mph, I ring my bell, smile, and do a little nod or wave. They usually pull off to the right, look at me, and smile/nod/wave back. When I'm on the road bike going 18mph+, I slow down to around 12-15mph and ring the bell a few seconds before passing, and do my smile/nod/wave, but if I'm in full kit, but they're less likely to smile/nod/wave back at me.

Probably just looks more intimidating to be in full cycling kit, where as I look much more approachable in my t-shirt and shorts when I'm riding the around-the-town bike.

I also make sure to ring my bell if I see dogs on the MUPs, and slow down much more than when I pass people. I also tend to wave to the dogs since I like dogs hahaha

I ride with a few people that think having a bell on my road bike is stupid, but I don't care, I use it often and I find it more friendly than yelling at people.
Parkyy16 is offline  
Likes For Parkyy16:
Old 04-25-21, 07:28 PM
  #17  
jaxgtr
Senior Member
 
jaxgtr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Jacksonville, FL
Posts: 5,321

Bikes: Trek Domane SLR 7, Trek Emonda ALR 6, Trek X-Caliber 8

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 256 Post(s)
Liked 509 Times in 319 Posts
Originally Posted by Ironfish653 View Post
No. In the street, you run facing traffic, so overtaking vehicles are on the opposite side of the road. Did you really not know that, or are you trying to be obtuse?

On the bike, I find that a bell is good for alerting other MUP users; it carries farther than voice, and is easily recognizable as 'bike'It's also non-confrontational; I'm not one of those 'serious' cyclists who feels it's necessary to tell at pedestrians.

Or stop pedaling and let the noisy hub let everyone know you are there....
__________________
Brian | 2021 Trek Domane SLR 7 | 2016 Trek Emonda ALR 6 | 2016 Trek X-Caliber 8
Originally Posted by AEO View Post
you should learn to embrace change, and mock it's failings every step of the way.




jaxgtr is offline  
Likes For jaxgtr:
Old 04-25-21, 07:31 PM
  #18  
Paul Barnard
For The Fun of It
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Louisissippi Coast
Posts: 4,897

Bikes: Lynskey Backroad, Litespeed T6, Lynskey MT29, Burley Duet

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1560 Post(s)
Liked 839 Times in 430 Posts
I look for pretty much any reason I can to yell at people. It's kinda therapeutic. On top of that "GET OUT OF MY WAY" communicates so much more effectively than "ding ding."
Paul Barnard is offline  
Likes For Paul Barnard:
Old 04-25-21, 07:45 PM
  #19  
GlennR
On Your Left
 
GlennR's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Long Island, New York, USA
Posts: 8,264

Bikes: Trek Emonda SLR, Sram eTap, Zipp 303

Mentioned: 34 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2919 Post(s)
Liked 2,273 Times in 1,113 Posts
Originally Posted by Paul Barnard View Post
I look for pretty much any reason I can to yell at people. It's kinda therapeutic. On top of that "GET OUT OF MY WAY" communicates so much more effectively than "ding ding."
I prefer "GET OFF MY GRASS" at the neighbor's kids.
GlennR is offline  
Likes For GlennR:
Old 04-25-21, 07:47 PM
  #20  
Rooney 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 148

Bikes: '85 Schwinn Voyageur SP; '80 Trek 710; '90 Trek 950; '91 Trek 750

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 65 Post(s)
Liked 93 Times in 49 Posts
My observations have been:

When living in NYC, vehicles and pedestrians (outside of touristy areas) expected and knew how to react to cyclists, because they're common. After moving back to the Philly suburbs, neither seem familiar with cyclists and don’t know what to do as a result. Although, cars do generally give me plenty of room, some also stay behind me when they could pass safely and easily. On MUPs I’ve gotten the same amount of benefit or lack of benefit from using a bell, saying “on your left” or “excuse me”, or passing silently. I’m not really sure what to do at this point. I try to be as polite as possible and smile. I mostly try to stay as far away from people as I can while passing. 🤷‍♂️
Rooney is offline  
Old 04-25-21, 07:49 PM
  #21  
Paul Barnard
For The Fun of It
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Louisissippi Coast
Posts: 4,897

Bikes: Lynskey Backroad, Litespeed T6, Lynskey MT29, Burley Duet

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1560 Post(s)
Liked 839 Times in 430 Posts
Originally Posted by GlennR View Post
I prefer "GET OFF MY GRASS" at the neighbor's kids.
That's most assuredly an important part of my repertoire.
Paul Barnard is offline  
Old 04-25-21, 08:09 PM
  #22  
Reflector Guy
Senior Member
 
Reflector Guy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2020
Location: Chicago
Posts: 866

Bikes: Bianchi Via Nirone

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 411 Post(s)
Liked 744 Times in 350 Posts
Originally Posted by Paul Barnard View Post
I look for pretty much any reason I can to yell at people. It's kinda therapeutic. On top of that "GET OUT OF MY WAY" communicates so much more effectively than "ding ding."
I've got both sides covered. I shout "DING!! DING!! DING!! DING!!" at everyone. Bells AND voice.
Reflector Guy is offline  
Likes For Reflector Guy:
Old 04-25-21, 08:37 PM
  #23  
downhillmaster
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2018
Posts: 1,424
Mentioned: 9 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 822 Post(s)
Liked 611 Times in 316 Posts
Originally Posted by SeniorCanadian View Post
I was sorry to see the previous thread closed ostensibly, because of some vitriol.

I was about to respond to the thread both as a rider and as a pedestrian. Earlier this week I was walking on a MUP and was surprised how effective a bike bell can be and how I was surprised when a cyclist came by without warning.

I have a bell on both of my bikes and use them freely, sometimes combining with my voice "On your left" or "On your right" as the situation warrants. My personal experience definitely supported the practice. I often get a "thanks" in response.
You lost me at SeniorCanadian...
downhillmaster is offline  
Likes For downhillmaster:
Old 04-25-21, 09:05 PM
  #24  
70sSanO
Senior Member
 
70sSanO's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Mission Viejo
Posts: 3,846

Bikes: 1986 Cannondale SR400 (Flat bar commuter), 1988 Cannondale Criterium XTR, 1992 Serotta T-Max, 1995 Trek 970

Mentioned: 16 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1146 Post(s)
Liked 991 Times in 645 Posts
Originally Posted by downhillmaster View Post
You lost me at SeniorCanadian...
You see there is this country north of the United States and in some parts technically west. It is called Canada. My assumption is that the person is an older person who lives in Canada. But not necessarily an older fan of the Canadiens, which the OP could also be. He may or may not be French Canadian; or should it be French Canadien. I’m not sure.

John
70sSanO is offline  
Old 04-25-21, 09:11 PM
  #25  
aplcr0331
disgwyl marwolaeth boenus
 
aplcr0331's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Inland Northwest
Posts: 731

Bikes: Black Road Bike

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 315 Post(s)
Liked 241 Times in 121 Posts
Well that settles it. I’m changing out my loud hubs, speeding up and quietly getting as close to every single pedestrian I can when I’m interval training on the MUP.

I might yell “HONK” or “RENAR” but only if they’re old and slow.
aplcr0331 is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.