Monday, December 27, 2010

Announcing My Approach (Third Alternative)

I have tried "on your left!" I've tried the gentle, yet insistent, ding ding from my brass "incredi-bell". This White Industries 16t freewheel is my third alternative method for announcing my approach. It is very possible that my former setup was too quiet. I rather enjoyed tooling along in almost complete silence. But I surprised people, whether with my "ding! ding!" or my "on your left!" probably because my ninja-silence caught them unawares. They'll hear me coming now, boy! And if they don't notice the freewheel, I can add on an "on your left!" along with a "ding! ding! ding!" and some furious backpedaling, which raises the pitch. I may miss the quiet sometimes. But possibly the ninja silence was inappropriate for the bike path. Except, you know, when I had ninja business to take care of.

May never be this clean again, ever

When I shot the video, I noticed I had done a decent job of cleaning up around the freewheel, so I took this shot, to remind myself what it looks like when semi-clean. A couple miles of canal dust will fix that up quickly. But that sealed bearing should keep it out, at least. Get up. Go ride.


  1. Ummmmm, yes, that noise should definitely alert anyone that you are approaching. :)

  2. Fourth Alternative: Send a couple of robotic velociraptors running ahead of you to clear the path.

  3. A jogger with earphones will only hear that if he/she happens to stream it off YouTube as you rde up behind.

  4. That is some serious freewheel noise, although, after a while I bet you won't even notice.

  5. JK I tried it out today, and it seems to work!

    Ted, you've started the wheels in motion. Heaven only knows what will come of that suggestion...

    Steve, perhaps I could inject my own packet stream into their feed and interpose my own video into their mobile mediascape?

    RTP, the microphone was pretty close, and it was a quiet room. Outside it is much less noticeable, although still pretty distinctive.

  6. Now THAT is a hub!
    I mean freewheel.

    Hark! here commeth JRA!
    Time to get outta the way!

  7. That is really loud! I often sneak up on pedestrians unintentionally, too, by being too quiet. And I have gears. Sadly, apparently nothing can overcome the fact that most people don't pay attention to anything going on around them.

  8. Apertome, I have concluded that paths belong to peds, in the sense that I understand that a person walking has an expectation that if they choose to walk along wearing headphones and/or iTubeFaceTexting such that they are totally oblivious to their surroundings, or even just have entered a meditative state such they are floating along in la-la land (or are unaware of their surrounding for whatever reason or whim), they will not be run over by a bicycle. Or if I can help it, not even startled by one. So I have recently started playing a game I call the slow ninja follow-pass, where I slow down drastically and try to sneak past them without being perceived at all, like the wind. It's harder when there's a group of them, though. Yesterday a little boy saw what I was up to, and he was the only one, everybody else was strolling along texting and chatting and blocking the path, but he saw me almost track standing behind them I was going so slow, and he crouched down and did his best Bruce Lee imitation right at me. It was incredibly funny. You haven't been really failed as a bicycle ninja until you've been bested by a three year old Bruce Lee.


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