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Dutch perspective on cycling in the US

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Dutch perspective on cycling in the US

Old 07-10-13, 12:03 PM
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Originally Posted by sudo bike View Post
...

Look, there's nothing wrong with Dutch city bikes.
I wouldn't go that far. They are exceedingly heavy, with pig-like handling.
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Old 07-10-13, 12:06 PM
  #402  
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Originally Posted by northernlights View Post

But why would I want to go through the trouble and expense of swapping out my drop bars for mustache bars just to improve comfort when I can simply by a hybrid that comes with wider handlebars already on it? As a casual rider why would I want a road bike at all? ...
Good point, for that matter why would you want to go through all the trouble of fixing a flat when you can just buy a brand new bike, with tires already pumped up by the very knowledgeable bike shop people?

(I've got to believe northernlights is pure troll action. If so, well played sir.)
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Old 07-10-13, 12:14 PM
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Originally Posted by buzzman View Post
Which of the potential solutions mentioned by Genec would fall under the classification of "minimal infrastructure"
Bike boulevards?
Yes...although most current bike boulevards are a joke because planners are unwilling to calm/divert motorized traffic.

Off road paths?
Only if they are affordable (e.g. targeted Fed grants) and connected.

Or "street slowing"?
Most definitely. IMO, this is the single biggest failure of bike advocacy in the USA. Speed reduction and traffic calming are also the main reasons that peds and cyclists are less likely to be maimed or killed in Europe.

Or is there another minimal infrastructure you would recommend in the case he mentions?
*Door zone free buffered bike lanes. (Paint is cheaper than concrete)
*Road diets and lane narrowing. (Paint is cheaper than concrete.)


Did I miss something but I don't see where Genec makes mention of the economic status of the area in question.
Here in Boston areas challenged economically have been made accessible by bike infrastructure and are often mentioned in terms of targeted areas for even more infrastructure. Fortunately, the disparity you mention is not as pronounced in either Boston or NYC, the two cities I commute in most regularly.
There has been a very tight correlation between gentrification and cycling infrastructure in PDX and other cities. There has also been targeting of newer and fancier cycling infrastructure to wealthy or gentrifying areas of Manhattan and Brooklyn. This is completely unacceptable, in my opinion.

Last edited by spare_wheel; 07-10-13 at 12:21 PM.
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Old 07-10-13, 12:18 PM
  #404  
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
Why is that? I must not have continued my conscious improvement to have the advanced mastery to recognize the benefits of using this bicycling skill more often.
Well if you're doing a lot of starting and stopping it helps in that regard... more torque for easier accelerations and also better low speed control. Varying the position also helps keep certain muscles and well-used areas fresh. Even the constant sitters should vary position a little bit frequently. Helps a lot. Comfort-wise.
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Old 07-10-13, 12:21 PM
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Originally Posted by RobertHurst View Post
I wouldn't go that far. They are exceedingly heavy, with pig-like handling.
Are you interested in joining my Cat 6 speed racer club, Robert?
We hold daily am and pm rides where we score points by intimidating people who wear normal clothing while riding dutch city bikes.
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Old 07-10-13, 12:31 PM
  #406  
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Originally Posted by Jaywalk3r View Post
Relative comfort need not be constant with distance. In other words, if Bike A is more comfortable than Bike B for a 100 mile ride, that does not imply that bike A is more comfortable than Bike B for a 10 mile ride.
You live in a mysterious universe, jaywak3r.

Originally Posted by Jaywalk3r View Post
Wow! That's just wrong! If your bike were more comfortable, perhaps you wouldn't need to come out of the saddle as often. You certainly don't need to come out of the saddle for a panic stop. In fact, doing so isn't desirable, since it raises your CG, which is something you do not want when stopping quickly. One can move their CG back, if necessary, without coming out of the saddle.
This is completely wrong, and Joe Riel did the mathematical proof as well (google is your friend). Getting off the saddle and behind it allows for about .85 gs of deceleration, as opposed to roughly .7 when seated. A very large difference. In my opinion, the well-timed movement of the body mass relative to the "envelope" of the bike-rider system is also very important and can shorten stops even more. This is all included in a chapter of my book Art of Cycling, by the way, if you're interested. But I can see you've got it all figured out. Good luck to you sir.
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Old 07-10-13, 12:33 PM
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Originally Posted by spare_wheel View Post
Are you interested in joining my Cat 6 speed racer club, Robert?
We hold daily am and pm rides where we score points by intimidating people who wear normal clothing while riding dutch city bikes.
That sounds right up my alley. I will wear my 90's vintage Mapei skinsuit.
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Old 07-10-13, 01:03 PM
  #408  
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The wife and I just spent two weeks in Holland this past May. We were shocked at the prevalence of bicycles in the Netherlands. Every railroad stop has racks hundreds of feet long capable of holding literally thousands of bikes. They do not wear helmets to any great extent. Most of their bikes in the main are upright step-through models which eliminate the need to swing one's feet over the saddle; short trips to the market, etc. Many have baskets and two or more kid seats. We saw mothers and dads riding them in the rain doing their shopping, the kids unconcerned about getting a bit wet. However the riders we saw in about eight large metropolitan areas were less 'traffic aware' than you see here in the States. Bikes are afforded so much right of way I suspect the Dutch get sort of spoiled and show less concern. We didn't see any accidents. Numerous times we'd see them signal for a turn and then unconcernedly change directions without even looking right or left. That's trust!

They did drive a lot faster than I would, at least in Leiden. Of course that is a university town and that may explain it.

I moderate at a photography site and we regularly get the criticism about using our cars to do everything. "If only the Americans would develop a transportation infrastructure." What many non-American (European) members don't get is the U.S. is so large. Today I went looking for my new bike and I traveled fifty miles to visit a few shops. I live near DC and I can drive for seven or eight hours and still be in Virginia; Texas is even more extreme. Further, the Dutch have what 16 feet of elevation change in the entire country.

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Old 07-10-13, 01:15 PM
  #409  
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Originally Posted by RobertHurst View Post
Well if you're doing a lot of starting and stopping it helps in that regard... more torque for easier accelerations and also better low speed control. Varying the position also helps keep certain muscles and well-used areas fresh. Even the constant sitters should vary position a little bit frequently. Helps a lot. Comfort-wise.
If you say so. I've found my 7speed IGH city bike with coaster brake, upright handle bars and Brooks B66 leather saddle quite comfortable without needing more torque for easy accelerations or "better" low speed control.

In fact, I've been quite comfortable and had satisfactory acceleration and low speed control without the "help" of standing on the pedals for the last 45 years of commuting here and there in the U.S.and overseas, always on similar bikes with similar equipment and similar technique.

Maybe I should read your book and find out how I've really been uncomfortable and not in full control at low speeds because certain muscles were not adequately refreshed or some other factor only obtained by standing on the pedals.
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Old 07-10-13, 01:17 PM
  #410  
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Originally Posted by RobertHurst View Post
I wouldn't go that far. They are exceedingly heavy, with pig-like handling.
You mean like a Cadillac of a car might be?
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Old 07-10-13, 01:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Rich Gibson View Post
The wife and I just spent two weeks in Holland this past May. We were shocked at the prevalence of bicycles in the Netherlands. Every railroad stop has racks hundreds of feet long capable of holding literally thousands of bikes. They do not wear helmets to any great extent. Most of their bikes in the main are upright step-through models which eliminate the need to swing one's feet over the saddle; short trips to the market, etc. Many have baskets and two or more kid seats. We saw mothers and dads riding them in the rain doing their shopping, the kids unconcerned about getting a bit wet. However the riders we saw in about eight large metropolitan areas were less 'traffic aware' than you see here in the States. Bikes are afforded so much right of way I suspect the Dutch get sort of spoiled and show less concern. We didn't see any accidents.

They did drive a lot faster than I would, at least in Leiden. Of course that is a university town and that may explain it.

I moderate at a photography site and we regularly get the criticism about using our cars to do everything. "If only the Americans would develop a transportation infrastructure." What many non-American (European) members don't get is the U.S. is so large. Today I went looking for my new bike and I traveled fifty miles to visit a few shops. I live near DC and I can drive for seven or eight hours and still be in Virginia; Texas is even more extreme. Further, the Dutch have what 16 feet of elevation change in the entire country.
While the USA is large, how often do you really go outside a 10-15 mile circle for your daily needs... it isn't as if we all commute 50 miles daily to go to work... so the largeness of the US is something of a misnomer. Studies done show that some 40% of daily errand trips are 2 miles or less, and most of us commute within 14 miles of our homes to work.
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Old 07-10-13, 01:33 PM
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
While the USA is large, how often do you really go outside a 10-15 mile circle for your daily needs... it isn't as if we all commute 50 miles daily to go to work... so the largeness of the US is something of a misnomer. Studies done show that some 40% of daily errand trips are 2 miles or less, and most of us commute within 14 miles of our homes to work.
Granted, but our 340 million people are distributed over a country which stretches over 3000 miles so there are tens of thousands of population centers of people who may/or may not limit their travel to short distances. Construction of a national integrated transportation system would involve essentially infinite amount of funding. Basically it looks good on an theoretical level. For the record I frequently travel outside the 14 miles and rarely have to go only 2 miles.

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Old 07-10-13, 02:36 PM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
If you say so. I've found my 7speed IGH city bike with coaster brake, upright handle bars and Brooks B66 leather saddle...
If you are a long-time fan of a particular bike "style" I think its human nature to believe that its comfortable or "better".
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Old 07-10-13, 02:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Rich Gibson View Post
What many non-American (European) members don't get is the U.S. is so large.
Europe is also large. What matters is local density.
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Old 07-10-13, 02:58 PM
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Originally Posted by CB HI View Post
Having done some extreme physical exertion in the Philippines during their hot season, lets do your stupid challenge there.
No, let's do it here, the place you claim is flat like Kansas. C'mon, find your spine, put on you big girl panties, and back up your trash talk.
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Old 07-10-13, 03:04 PM
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Originally Posted by RobertHurst View Post
I wouldn't go that far. They are exceedingly heavy, with pig-like handling.
Only extremely weak cyclists should be worried about the weight of a commuter/utility bike. For most people who commute and run errands on a bike, the difference between a 25 pound commuter and a 45 pound commuter is well within normal variation of load weight, and gets lost in the noise.
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Old 07-10-13, 03:07 PM
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Originally Posted by RobertHurst View Post
I've got to believe northernlights is pure troll action. If so, well played sir.
I find it curious that so many people on these forums make trolling accusations any time they lack a cogent argument that actually addresses content of posts. Such accusations are, ironically, textbook examples of trolling.
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Old 07-10-13, 03:11 PM
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Originally Posted by CB HI View Post
Says the guy that started the BS.

Having done some extreme physical exertion in the Philippines during their hot season, lets do your stupid challenge there. It certainly beats Springfield, MO in heat and humidity by a long shot.
Originally Posted by Jaywalk3r View Post
No, let's do it here, the place you claim is flat like Kansas. C'mon, find your spine, put on you big girl panties, and back up your trash talk.
I figured the Philippines would be too much, too hard for you.

PS - you have been pretty much the trash talker to several BF members in this thread. I have simply noted your many BS claims.

Originally Posted by CB HI View Post
Still no street and cross street of the >12% grade hill he routinely rides!
I figured out your gravity and >12% hill thing. Since you clam riding hills is the same as riding flat lands due to gravity being conservative; you simply ride your flat 2 mile flat commute and claim that as riding a >12% hill everyday.
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Old 07-10-13, 03:14 PM
  #419  
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Originally Posted by Jaywalk3r View Post
Maintain your equipment. Plan your routes well. Practice stoppies often. Keep your head on a swivel.
What is a stoppie? Is it stopping at a light?
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Old 07-10-13, 03:18 PM
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Originally Posted by RobertHurst View Post
You live in a mysterious universe, jaywak3r.
No, I live in the real world. There is no reason to believe that comfort level is constant with distance, or that the comfort level changes with distance at an identical rate with every bike.

This is completely wrong, and Joe Riel did the mathematical proof as well (google is your friend). Getting off the saddle and behind it allows for about .85 gs of deceleration, as opposed to roughly .7 when seated. A very large difference.
Yes, moving back can help braking performance. Moving forward, or, as you claimed, moving upwards, harms braking performance. I will, however, give you the benefit of the doubt, and assume that what you wrote was not exactly what you meant, and that your understanding of bicycle braking is actually consistent with Riel's assertion.

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Old 07-10-13, 03:20 PM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
If you say so. I've found my 7speed IGH city bike with coaster brake, upright handle bars and Brooks B66 leather saddle quite comfortable without needing more torque for easy accelerations or "better" low speed control.

In fact, I've been quite comfortable and had satisfactory acceleration and low speed control without the "help" of standing on the pedals for the last 45 years of commuting here and there in the U.S.and overseas, always on similar bikes with similar equipment and similar technique.

Maybe I should read your book and find out how I've really been uncomfortable and not in full control at low speeds because certain muscles were not adequately refreshed or some other factor only obtained by standing on the pedals.
Standing on the pedals does help. It is a very useful technique. You asked about it. Now you act like my explanation is some sort of personal attack. Well, whatever.
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Old 07-10-13, 03:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Rich Gibson View Post
Granted, but our 340 million people are distributed over a country which stretches over 3000 miles so there are tens of thousands of population centers of people who may/or may not limit their travel to short distances. Construction of a national integrated transportation system would involve essentially infinite amount of funding. Basically it looks good on an theoretical level. For the record I frequently travel outside the 14 miles and rarely have to go only 2 miles.
You mean like the Federal Highway act of 1956? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal...ay_Act_of_1956

The reality is that bike infrastructure would generally only need be local.

For the record, your travel is beyond that of the average American... and exceptions can always be found. I work within 7 miles of my home.
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Old 07-10-13, 03:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Jaywalk3r View Post
No, I live in the real world. There is no reason to believe that comfort level is constant with distance, or that the comfort level changes with distance at an identical rate with every bike.
In the real world, the bike which is comfortable for long distances is also comfortable for short distances. What is so hard to understand about that?



Originally Posted by Jaywalk3r View Post
Yes, moving back can help braking performance. Moving forward, or, as you claimed, moving upwards, harms braking performance. I will, however, give you the benefit of the doubt, and assume that what you wrote was not exactly what you meant, and that your understanding of bicycle braking is actually consistent with Riel's assertion.
[/QUOTE]

Don't take my word for it, try it yourself.

When you get off the saddle and put your weight on the pedals, you separate the body from the bike, and instantly gain control, whereas with the body attached to the bike, the bike controls you. Beyond that, you're not above the saddle, but behind it and actually below it for the hard stop. Throwing the body weight back at the right moment is critical for a panic stop. Can't do it while sitting on the seat like a barstool, obviously.

Riel didn't make the assertion, I made the assertion based on physical experimentation, and Riel proved it mathematically.
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Old 07-10-13, 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Jaywalk3r View Post
Only extremely weak cyclists should be worried about the weight of a commuter/utility bike. For most people who commute and run errands on a bike, the difference between a 25 pound commuter and a 45 pound commuter is well within normal variation of load weight, and gets lost in the noise.
Another completely incorrect statement. The difference between a reasonably light bike and a very heavy one is obvious and completely changes the character of the ride.

I'm not saying you can't have fun on a heavy, slow bike or get a lot of stuff done. I have myself. But it is very different. People would know that if they had tried both types of bicycle.
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Old 07-10-13, 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by RobertHurst View Post
Don't take my word for it, try it yourself.

When you get off the saddle and put your weight on the pedals, you separate the body from the bike, and instantly gain control, whereas with the body attached to the bike, the bike controls you. Beyond that, you're not above the saddle, but behind it and actually below it for the hard stop. Throwing the body weight back at the right moment is critical for a panic stop. Can't do it while sitting on the seat like a barstool, obviously.

Riel didn't make the assertion, I made the assertion based on physical experimentation, and Riel proved it mathematically.
Any half decent mountain biker knows this. For some reason it takes road cyclist much longer to learn and clearly, some NEVER do learn.
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