Anyone here a cyclist? | Page 2 | GTAMotorcycle.com

Anyone here a cyclist?

Max527

Well-known member
I commute downtown Dundas and Mccaul to Finch and Yonge nearly every day on my suzuki and find no issues with cars and traffic. I believe it's because of the experience of cycling downtown for years to work and back when I lived downtown. Although there will always be that driver that doesn't look or cut you off lol. I still cycle to the subway station but it's only a few blocks.
 

Mad Mike

Well-known member
I think there should be some changes to the law that would make cycling safer for all concerned.

1) Licence cyclists who want to use the road. Every road users except cyclists must pass a simple written test to show they understand the rules fo the road before they get access, accept an M1 or G1, maybe have a bicycle specific B1
2) Plate bikes. This does 2 things, first a nominal annual 'sticker' fee could accelerate funding for cycling infrastructure. The concept exists for motorists who pay an annual plate fee to support roads, and tolls that are collected by plate. Another benefit would be law enforcement, it's pretty hard to track down a bike that is behaving badly i a congested city -- plate ID would help.
3) More cyclist education and enforcement.
 

MaksTO

Well-known member
I think there should be some changes to the law that would make cycling safer for all concerned.

1) Licence cyclists who want to use the road. Every road users except cyclists must pass a simple written test to show they understand the rules fo the road before they get access, accept an M1 or G1, maybe have a bicycle specific B1
2) Plate bikes. This does 2 things, first a nominal annual 'sticker' fee could accelerate funding for cycling infrastructure. The concept exists for motorists who pay an annual plate fee to support roads, and tolls that are collected by plate. Another benefit would be law enforcement, it's pretty hard to track down a bike that is behaving badly i a congested city -- plate ID would help.
3) More cyclist education and enforcement.
Some time ago I was also wondering if that would be thrown into an elementary school curriculum. Have a company that brings bikes to a school for a week, sets up pylons and your gym class for that week is just discussing safety and riding techniques. Get them thinking about it young.
 
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Mad Mike

Well-known member
Some time ago I was also wondering if that would be thrown into an elementary school curriculum. Have a company that brings bikes to a school for a week, sets up pylons and your gym class for that week is just discussing safety and riding techniques. Get them thinking about it young.
They do that in the Netherlands. In grade 6 students take a course and exam to get their Verkeersdiploma, basically a certificate that says they have suitable knowledge and skills to operate a bicycle safely in traffic. Apparently it's a pretty big deal for Dutch kids -- kind of a rite of passage that one goes thru just before entering high schook.
 

TK4

Well-known member
Some time ago I was also wondering if that would be thrown into an elementary school curriculum. Have a company that brings bikes to a school for a week, sets up pylons and your gym class for that week is just discussing safety and riding techniques. Get them thinking about it young.
Long ago, we had cops that would come to school and do stuff like that. Do they not have basic safety programs any more ?
 

FullMotoJacket

Well-known member
Site Supporter
Had the cop, the 4 foot tall traffic light, and the cones in the gym at my school in 65.
 

GreyGhost

Well-known member
Site Supporter
I ride bicycles when I can get the time. Some years that is a lot, other years almost nothing. For a downtown bike, I personally would not want a full blown road bike. MTB is stronger, better brakes, you sit more upright, less likely to get bitten by the streetcar tracks, tons of tire choices etc. When my wife had an apartment downtown, I kept a 29er with 28mm gatorskins on it at her place. It was awesome (although 28 mm isn't wide enough to make streetcar tracks reasonably safe). You could ride it pretty much anywhere. If I wanted to go mountain biking, a tire swap only took a few minutes. Sure, a pure road bike will beat it in speed, but if you are consistently going close to 40 km/h in the city, it is only a matter of time before you crash into an idiot pedestrian or car that isn't paying attention.
 

Mad Mike

Well-known member
Long ago, we had cops that would come to school and do stuff like that. Do they not have basic safety programs any more ?
I remember that, they came in a yellow 69 Dodge Polara with an Elephant mounted to the roof and a 375HP 440 mounted under the hood..
 

Mad Mike

Well-known member
I ride bicycles when I can get the time. Some years that is a lot, other years almost nothing. For a downtown bike, I personally would not want a full blown road bike. MTB is stronger, better brakes, you sit more upright, less likely to get bitten by the streetcar tracks, tons of tire choices etc. When my wife had an apartment downtown, I kept a 29er with 28mm gatorskins on it at her place. It was awesome (although 28 mm isn't wide enough to make streetcar tracks reasonably safe). You could ride it pretty much anywhere. If I wanted to go mountain biking, a tire swap only took a few minutes. Sure, a pure road bike will beat it in speed, but if you are consistently going close to 40 km/h in the city, it is only a matter of time before you crash into an idiot pedestrian or car that isn't paying attention.
I have a couple in the garage. The old Santa Cruz Heckler MTB is a little too tough for urban riding, I use a Specialized Sirrus hybrid on the rare occasion I get out, plenty tough for me and easy to ride.
 

LePhillou

Well-known member
Site Supporter
I think there should be some changes to the law that would make cycling safer for all concerned.

1) Licence cyclists who want to use the road. Every road users except cyclists must pass a simple written test to show they understand the rules fo the road before they get access, accept an M1 or G1, maybe have a bicycle specific B1
2) Plate bikes. This does 2 things, first a nominal annual 'sticker' fee could accelerate funding for cycling infrastructure. The concept exists for motorists who pay an annual plate fee to support roads, and tolls that are collected by plate. Another benefit would be law enforcement, it's pretty hard to track down a bike that is behaving badly i a congested city -- plate ID would help.
3) More cyclist education and enforcement.
But problem is it's like trying to beat a dead horse. The costs of holding this program and trying to include this type of licensing and plating would most likely overwhelm the service ontario counters. They've done studies on its feasibility time and time again and it has proved not to be cost effective enough to be implemented.
And honestly with all the cars already getting away from infractions while still being plated, licensed and insured due to lack of enforcement...how much enforcement would we expect from the police for an idiot cyclist breaking the laws?!

How does it work for kids' bicycles? Where do you get plating done? Point of sale? And with private sales?

I gotta say, understanding the rules of the road is a must, and i totally agree with that, but to get the message through to the right people is hard. Even if it's taught...people still disregard them or forget them.

I do love the idea of having money put toward cycling infrastructure that way, but you would probably see a decrease in bike ridership adoption due to the paperwork and bureaucracy surrounding it...and that's one of the beautiful things with cycling, you just pick it up and go. It costs very little to society in terms of processing (insurance, plates, licensing, servicing, etc) compared to motor vehicles; it's quite a minimalist method of transportation.
 

LePhillou

Well-known member
Site Supporter
I actually found when I was peak fitness, cycling on the road was safer for me than the trail. At least in the evenings. People on the trail walking their kids or dogs or just moping about weave all over the place and just stressed me out to no end. On the road I can safely push 35-40kmh the whole way and seamlessly run with traffic. Would often just take cues from motorcyclist riding habits and try to blend in on my commutes from etobicoke to cherry beach.

That being said I probably can't ride that fast for that long anymore... few years out of practice ugh...


Definitely must be interesting to have multiple perspectives on road use with all three major modes under your belt.
The roads i use are so used to having cyclists share the road that i'm not bothered by traffic at all. People leave me space...although actually i find the only ones who DON'T leave me space are the smallest cars who could easily move 1 foot further lol.

On the trails usually my commute is not during times that it's being used by non-commuters...i might get some rollerbladers once in a while or some stroller runners but it's pretty easy to avoid due to low traffic at the times i use it. I'll probably "never" try to use it during a weekend or on a nice evening late after work hours.

Hopefully one day i get to be as fast as you were! Once i switch over to roadbike use over the hybrid i expect a speed bump on my longer rides ;)
 

MaksTO

Well-known member
I actually found "road" bike to be the way to go downtown for a while. Well, the days where I rode that fast, I was actually riding a fixed gear. With a front brake, because I wasn't that much of an idiot. Road feel was nice because your feet would slip any time traction was low. Also my seating position and bike geometry meant I could go 40-0 in about 2-3 seconds. Not enough if there's someone jumping out, but enough to slow and swerve out of the way quickly (which was helped by the riding geometry, and GP4000S tires which grip like a mother...). Full disclosure, I don't recommend this by the way. I don't do this anymore.

Never had a "serious" accident with others involved over that time. All that being said, I wouldn't ride like that anymore. I was 16 and willing to push my boundaries. It was risky riding, nowadays I will happily coast at a lower-ish speed (25-8kmh) with an even better stopping distance thanks to disc brakes. Commuting definitely shouldn't be about pushing ones boundaries, I just essentially Time Attacked myself all summer to keep the rides fun.

I had a gear ratio that would take me 35km/h at 120rpm, meaning that was the most efficient speed to go as far as circular momentum and aerobic stress. Nowadays I have a CX bike (steel, 2x10 gearing, with 38mm slicks), but riding on 25mm tires downtown was actually fine when accustomed. Just gotta hop those tracks.

**Main thing to increase your road bike speed and to feel better about your ability is group rides! When you're within something like 30cm of the rider in front, the slipstream gives you an INSANE amount of aerodynamic efficiency. Makes group riding feel like a game of chess - switching positions in the wind with everyone to propel eachother faster and faster while also spending enough time at the back to recoup from the workout. You basically become one organism - keep in mind this also holds true if one of you falls though... so careful. Respectful groups will not pull this sort of **** until they are out of the downtown core and on a street where they can occupy an entire lane without disrupting flow of traffic. Downtown its 1up all the way.
 

Relax

Well-known member
Can someone please explain to me the actual law on riding single file vs 2 or 3 wide, and the 1 meter rule? For example, every weekend, there are groups of bicyclists riding along Lakeshore in Mississauga riding 2 or 3 wide taking up the entire width of the right lane. Is there a law that says they must ride single file, and if not, do drivers in the left lane still need to give them 1 meter?
 

GreyGhost

Well-known member
Site Supporter
A bike
Can someone please explain to me the actual law on riding single file vs 2 or 3 wide, and the 1 meter rule? For example, every weekend, there are groups of bicyclists riding along Lakeshore in Mississauga riding 2 or 3 wide taking up the entire width of the right lane. Is there a law that says they must ride single file, and if not, do drivers in the left lane still need to give them 1 meter?
A bike is legally entitled to take up a whole lane. Riders that want to stay alive keep to the edge. D-bag groups that don't stay to the right make rage and make the world less safe for those that aren't d-bags. In the country, I don't mind if a large group stacks up two or three wide, but much of the time, I find the groups that wide are only two or three inconsiderate riders (especially when they stay wide crawling up a hill).

Similar to the other thread where someone was complaining about lane sharing with a car, I make space and keep to the right unless there is a reason and then I clearly take the lane (for instance coming into an s-bend where there isn't enough space for a car to safely pass a bike).
 

MaksTO

Well-known member
A bike

A bike is legally entitled to take up a whole lane. Riders that want to stay alive keep to the edge. D-bag groups that don't stay to the right make rage and make the world less safe for those that aren't d-bags. In the country, I don't mind if a large group stacks up two or three wide, but much of the time, I find the groups that wide are only two or three inconsiderate riders (especially when they stay wide crawling up a hill).

Similar to the other thread where someone was complaining about lane sharing with a car, I make space and keep to the right unless there is a reason and then I clearly take the lane (for instance coming into an s-bend where there isn't enough space for a car to safely pass a bike).
There are definitely ****** group cyclists who act entitled. But the logic in cycling is the same as in motorcycling it seems - ride in a group with a dangerous rider, and you put yourself at risk as well. Socially, physically, and legally.

Many long standing group rides have briefings before each ride on what behavior is allowed and what is not. Those who do not follow are thoroughly discouraged from joining again. Most rides I've been on where road rage was involved had a aggressor in the car, trying to start a physical fight at the side of the road, and a group of riders who calmly diffuse the situation, usually leaving all parties heading their separate way with a smile on their face (this is not often the case statistically speaking, but the people I rode with were that good at this sort of thing).

As far as two-up riding goes, it seems to be a bit of a grey area seeing as cyclists can technically use a whole lane, as you have said. That being said, from my personal experiences, the amount of times I've had close calls riding solo number in the hundreds, and in the few hundred group rides I've done over my cycling years, never have I once felt in danger by a car when riding with 10 or more people. If you stay in the right lane and make a clear effort to let cars pass on the left without problem. Respect earns respect in all cases.

Definitely agree that 3 d-bags hogging a single lane would be infuriating in all cases (hell, even when I'm going up a hill at a good click and see people crawling in a group I get annoyed). In that case I'd usually ride with my friends side by side, and be constantly doing shoulder checks to immediately clear the way if I see headlights in the distance. On country/out of downtown roads this is so easy to do that there's no reason not to.
 

Relax

Well-known member
What about HTA 147 that I've seen quoted elsewhere? Wouldn't this indicate that bicycles must ride in single file? Also, isn't there a law that prohibits motorcycles from riding side by side, and wouldn't that also apply to bicyclists?


Slow vehicles to travel on right side - Section 147

(1) Any vehicle travelling upon a roadway at less than the normal speed of traffic at that time and place shall, where practicable, be driven in the right-hand lane then available for traffic or as close as practicable to the right hand curb or edge of the roadway. R.S.O. 1990, c. H.8, s. 147 (1).

Exception

(2) Subsection (1) does not apply to a driver of a,

(a) vehicle while overtaking and passing another vehicle proceeding in the same direction;

(b) vehicle while preparing for a left turn at an intersection or into a private road or driveway; or

(c) road service vehicle. R.S.O. 1990, c. H.8, s. 147 (2).
 

GreyGhost

Well-known member
Site Supporter
From the horses mouth
Bicycle Safety
http://www.mto.gov.on.ca/english/safety/pdfs/cycling-skills.pdf
Page 39 of the second link says "There are a few safety tips to keep in mind when travelling in groups. Ride in single file on two-lane roads or when traffic is heavy on multi-lane roads. Keep at least one metre apart from other cyclists in the group and keep several lengths apart when going downhill at high speed. If you are travelling in a large group, break up into smaller groups of about four to six. Keep about one kilometre between groups to allow traffic to pass." So it looks like they could use 147 if they needed to give tickets, but they acknowledge that groups happen, don't block the road.

IIRC, the motorcycle side by side law is along the lines of one motor vehicle per lane (but motorcycle cops clearly completely ignore this so it may be guidance not law).
 
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Baggsy

Well-known member
Site Supporter
My understanding is that bikes may occupy any part of the lane when required, but they must turn out to the right as far as possible to allow traffic to pass. This may have changed with all the new bike laws.

Some cyclists liberally interpret the first part.
 

GreyGhost

Well-known member
Site Supporter
"You must stay as close to the right edge of the road whenever possible, especially if you're slower than other traffic. "
Yeah, but if it came down to it, you could argue that you were in the right wheel track because there was so much crap on the road right of that path. Again, I think this is a dumb idea, but it shouldn't be hard to win in court.
 

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