My Bike Lane

My Bike Lane is a website that allows users to upload photos of bike lane parking violations. Approximately 7,200 reports have been posted from around the world. New York City takes the cake with over 4,000 entries!

My Bike Lane

The Bike Riding Secretary

Steven Chu (center)

Steven Chu is an avid bicyclist, bike advocate, and bike commuter. He also happens to be the new Secretary of Energy in the Obama Administration. Ironically, his new position is forcing him off of his bike and back into an automobile.

From Grist:

Is it true you don’t drive a car?
My wife does, but I no longer own a car. Let me just say that in most of my jobs, I mostly rode my bicycle.

And now?
My security detail didn’t want me to be riding my bicycle or even taking the Metro. I have a security detail that drives me.

How do you feel about adding carbon emissions to the air?
I don’t feel good about it.

I guess the president wants to keep you alive.
My wife is in favor of that as well.


Superflash Rear Rack Tail Light Bracket

I posted the other day about a rear rack mounting bracket for the popular Planet Bike Superflash:

“Speaking of Planet Bike, I just ran across this awesome little light bracket. As many of you know, I’m a big fan of PB’s Superflash tail light. Until now, I’ve been mounting my Superflash on my seatpost. This bracket allows you to mount the tail light on your rear rack in the “Euro” position—a better location if you use a rack trunk or routinely strap items to the top of your rack.”

I ordered a pair of brackets a few days ago and they arrived today. One of my racks has a Euro-style horizontal tail light mount and the other has a vertical mount. I’m happy to say the bracket fits both mounts and took just a few minutes to install with the supplied mounting screws.

Planet Bike Tail Light Bracket

Metro Dry Run

I have an Arkel Metropolitan pannier (“Metro” for short) in-house for review and I took it out on a real commute for the first time today. Here are a few first impressions:

  • It’s a sharp looking bag.
  • It looks business-like and fits in well at the office.
  • It rides a little higher than some bags, making for more heel clearance.
  • Even though it appears to be smaller than the Arkel Bug (review here), it holds about the same amount of stuff.
  • The single shoulder strap is well-padded, but if you carry a lot of junk like I do and you have a multi-modal commute that involves getting on and off of transit and walking long distances, the Bug with its double backpack straps is likely to be more comfortable for you.
  • It has a flat bottom and stands up nicely on its own.
  • The overall quality and workmanship is vintage Arkel – in a word, superb.

I also have a matching Metro handlebar bag on test. I’ll publish full reviews with detailed photos of both once I’ve had more time to give them a real workout.

Arkel Metropolitan

An “Accident Waiting to Happen”?

A bicyclist is outfitted with a flashing red tail light, yellow jacket, booties with reflective strips, but no headlight. The rider is struck by a motorist, and the judge dismisses the charges against the driver because of the lack of a headlight, even going so far as to call the bicyclist “an accident waiting to happen”. The kicker? The bicyclist was struck from behind.

I thought this kind of bias against bicyclists was unique to the U.S, but apparently not; this took place in Australia. Protecting yourself from technicalities like this is reason enough to thoroughly outfit yourself with protective gear and obey all traffic laws.

Read the original story in the Courier

A Day in the Sun

We had a nice day at the Green Machine Bike Fair today. The setting was beautiful, the weather was gorgeous, and it was great fun meeting some of our blog readers in person. Jeff rode all the way over from Rocklin on his beautiful 67cm Rivendell A. Homer Hilsen (thanks Jeff!) and it was great to finally meet Eric from Sac.

Highlights included the Bike Blender smoothie booth, John the trike riding “sign swinger” (more on John later), 50 cent fresh limeade, and a nice collection of raffle prizes. A number of local bike shops were in attendance showing their goods as well.

The Belle of the Ball was Rick’s Greenspeed GT1 trike. Practically every person who walked by wanted to take it for a spin; I think he should sell tickets next year. The darned trike was such a distraction that the gorgeous two wheelers surrounding it were relegated to the sidelines for a good chunk of the day. Most of the test riders were college students and I doubt their budgets have room for a $2,350 trike, but maybe a seed was planted for the future. If nothing else, the trike rides created a stir and made some people smile.

Overall, turnout was light as might be expected for a mid-day, mid-week event, but it’s always good to get out and talk with people face-to-face about bike commuting and how they’re using their bikes for transportation.

Happy Earth Day!

We’re sharing a booth with Gold Country Cyclery at Folsom Lake College’s “Green Machine” Bicycle Fair from 11am—2pm today. The fair is part of FLC’s Earth Week Festival. We’ll have a few commuter bikes on hand as well as a variety of bike commuting accessories. If you’re in the area, stop by and say “hi”; we’d love to meet you!

More information →

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