1st Ride To Work Today

Discussion in 'Travelling, Commuting & Safety' started by Nuttsy, Jul 5, 2008.

  1. Nuttsy

    Nuttsy Member

    Stopped the test rides and took the leap. I should preface this by saying I have made this trip more times than I can count over the past 3 or so years but only on pedal power and 'bikes on busses' program. So the trip is nothing "new". Had two major hi-rise bridges to go over to get to the beach where my accounts are. The Subaru tire scrubber w/1-1/8" roller handled them both at 16-18mph with light pedal assist, as opposed to walking/sweating. On the flats I kept it to 20-ish as it is still in the break-in stages. However, punching it a couple of times I could get to 26mph and it feels like I'm ready for take-off! That's all these old bones need or want...for now.
    Beautiful morning here in FL at 7AM. On the way to the beach, I looked off to my right over the seawall and saw a large wake breaking the calm water of the bay. A dolphin then surfaced about 10ft. off the wall. Ah, the things most of us take for granted here. Out to the beach and through the traffic circle and on to the second high bridge. Traffic...non-existant. Motor humming along flawlessly.
    Hit 3 work stops and headed for home. Yeah, right! The long way. Cruised the beach road, still vacant at 9:30AM. Over a smaller draw bridge to the mainland...no sweat, 18mph up the span. Stopped at a local county park for a snack and checked the fuel tank. Hmmm. Maybe enough to get home if I plan a direct route...Nah! Stopped a gas station. Ah, the adventure REALLY begins. As some of you may know in these high priced fuel times, ...pay in advance. HOW?! Into the store I go. Pull out a dollar bill. Said to the clerk,"I don't know how much it will hold but here's a dollar. That should more than cover it". Smiles were exchanged as he looked out the window toward the pumps at the lonely bicycle sitting there. I fueled up. The pump was extremely slow. Had to look at the display to see if it was registering. It was. RATS! 46cents US! Change was in order. Went into the store and the clerk was ready and waiting with my change complete with stupid grin. I guess I had one too. Since I use whatever means of transport for my self employment I always get fuel reciepts. Just didn't have the stones to ask for one this time. I figured, "this one's on me, Uncle Sam". Upon my exit from the store the clerk, in a friendly, joking manner, said, "thanks! Now I can retire"! LOL
    So, off I zipped (I'm zippy now). Took the long way home for a 25 mile shake down cruise. For some stupid reason, I felt I should be doing something and found myself pedaling in hi-gear A LOT! Seemed like I was cheating if I didn't.
    And, the looks you get. People on the street stop and stare as I go by. People in cars slow down as they pass to get a good look. At one point a group of 3 children in the back seat of a car were all turned around staring at me after they passed. Joggers, pedestrians, even a guy on a 'formal' scooter smile as I passed by. Weird! And my bike is nothing special. A simple rack mount on a Schwinn hybrid with ape hangers for comfort. I can't imagine the looks you guys with the HT kits on a cruiser get. Got a "drop dead" look from a Spandex dude on the top of the second hi-rise bridge while he took a break as I passed by. He was breathing hard. I was wearing my knee brace(tendonitis) so maybe he thought that was the best I could do. Yeah, I'll keep that thought. OR... the Spandex crowd can just eat my shorts! Zipped past a couple of other "Lance" wannabes. Guess that doesn't happen to them much as they were looking back to see where that shadow was coming from.
    Oh, and speaking of shadows...glanced down at mine more than once. The thought that came to my mind...Dr. Suesse. My shadow looked like something out of one of the story books! All I needed was a tall striped top hat!
    Well that's my story for my inaugural voyage on my WayBack machine. Note to self: need larger fuel tank; decent eyewear (Home Depot Safety glasses worked, but...eh; helmet mount mirror (no room for anything else on the handlebar;
    Question?: Has anyone figured out how to get the perma-grin off of ones face? Ah, then again, why would one want to? They say it takes less muscles to smile than to frown!

  2. I hang a fuel bottle on my handlebars.That way as long as that bottle is filled up I don't worry about how much gas I have left. When I run out I fill up then I have 40 miles to find a gas station.
    I usually fill it back up right away so I have no worries.
    I want a Cat in the Hat hat now.
  3. Nuttsy

    Nuttsy Member

    If I was running a 2 cycle the extra fuel bottle would be an absolute add-on. But with the 4 cycle, 'ain't no thang', and the refueling actually was the hi point of my day! Ah, my so-called life! I do, however, plan on keeping a small container of gas at my furthest point of travel and get a larger fuel tank or add on one of those small gas cans as I see some here doing.
    BTW, I think a Cat-in-the-Hat, hat would put you over the top! Jolly andstylish!
  4. Mountainman

    Mountainman Active Member

    That was fun -- reading about your ride... Yes, there is something very special about a small engine - not wasting - and when we fill up - it's almost like free.. My water bottle is now an extra gas tank -- don't need water often - now that I am not pedalling all the time --- my wife is a TRUE BICYCLE RIDER -- very serious -- maybe now I can keep up with her ---- with my engine - people may think that I am her trainner ??? Happy Riding from - Mountainman
  5. darwin

    darwin Well-Known Member

    At most major intersections I use the crosswalk and pedal across like a pedestrian and while Im waiting for the green most folks just stare at the bike then smile and wave at me. The most Ive spent at a gas station so far is a $1.40 or close. I love it. EXXON isnt getting rich off of me.
  6. crazeehorse

    crazeehorse Member

    the smile only goes away when the your engine has been shut off for at least an hour, and has been know to last for hours afterward. i said after i got mine, if someone you know is depressed, get em a motoredbike!, then they would be forced out of it, at least for that time.
  7. Nuttsy

    Nuttsy Member

    True, True, True! :grin:
  8. Nuttsy

    Nuttsy Member

    Funny you should mention, but I just filled an old spare water bottle with fuel. I have 2 water bottle holders on my frame and figured this was a better use. I can still carry a 2nd water bottle in my back pack tho. I sweat like a horse and really need the water. Trainer!... Clever ruse MountainMan. Wear a whistle around your neck and shout things to her...nice things, tho!:smile: Never want to P/O the wrong one!
  9. KilroyCD

    KilroyCD Active Member

  10. darwin

    darwin Well-Known Member

    NUTTSY! Yoy need to be careful gas will eat through alot of plastics and if you have a frame mount it can cause a fire if it leaks onto something hot, at a minimum you might ruin your paint job.
  11. Nuttsy

    Nuttsy Member

    "Why not try a bar end mirror? It mounts at the butt end of the grip. http://www.bikeworldusa.com/product_...roducts_id/852"

    I would like to and thanks for the suggestion KilroyCD. Problem is with the ape hanger bars I've got, the ends point back instead of out. There is not enough mirror adjustment to compensate. I just tried a helmet mount...hated it. Back it goes. May try a conventional mirror mounted on the upright portion of the bar and try to angle it appropriately. I'll just take the bike into the bike shop this time and let them see what will work. That should be interesting! Although I've done business with this shop for a few years and they've always been super with me.

    "NUTTSY! Yoy need to be careful gas will eat through alot of plastics and if you have a frame mount it can cause a fire if it leaks onto something hot, at a minimum you might ruin your paint job."
    Thanks for the heads up Darwin. I checked the bottle and it's the same as my gas cans. HDPE #2. Will definately keep a close eye on it though. Jeez, I love the way folks look out for each other here! Very comforting and reassuring.
  12. This is what I use for mirrors.
    Best helmet mirror around in my opinion.
    I use two of them. Almost a 360 deg view.
  13. alex

    alex Guest

    Oh, and Nuttsy make sure that your fuel and water bottles are labled, or different colored or something.
    Bikes run good on gas, you don't.
  14. Nuttsy

    Nuttsy Member

    OK, that explains the fire breath!
    They don't call me Nuttsy for Nuttin!
  15. Warner

    Warner Member

    For safety, you can get yourself an MSR fuel bottle - they come in different sizes and are MADE to carry fuels. I bought 2 (22oz) off of Ebay for about $12 each including shipping and they should be here soon...maybe even today if I'm lucky!

    Hope this helps,

  16. Esteban

    Esteban Active Member

    Clearwater is a nice area to ride ! Mirrors= http://www.3rd-eye.com/
    DON'T use a water bottle for gas storage. Get a fuel bottle as recommended in other posts. Don't look toward the beach at pretty women , while riding !!
  17. gno323

    gno323 New Member

    I'm going to take my leap this friday!!! 22 miles each way whittier to Downtown Los Angeles....I'm kind of scared to be honest but $100. a month parking permit and $65. to fill my car up a week leads me toward this...any tips????
  18. Warner

    Warner Member

    I hear you! I'm thinking tomorrow will be my first commute...about 20 miles each way in suburban Chicago area traffic. I'm a little scared, too....of traffic AND "the man", but I've got the **** thing built now....better at least TRY it, right? Good luck, and wish me the same!

  19. gno323

    gno323 New Member

    Good luck!!! Let us know how it went...
    Luv Chicago BTW!
  20. Warner

    Warner Member

    Well, it isn't going to happen tomorrow....they just changed the weather forecast and it looks like thunderstorms are going to happen right when I'd be leaving work for home.....