A little encouragement

jdg88

New Member
New to commuting to work and new to triking. I've thoroughly enjoyed the freedom that the trike provides me as I have a lousy sense of balance and three wheels makes me feel so safe. But the commute involves driving on the A428 and it's busy and the car drivers aren't being very tolerant. I'm quite slow up the hills at the moment and there are alot of double white lines, but they're too impatient and overtake agressively and dangerously. It's really getting to me now, any advice, encouragement? Thanks.
 
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jdg88

New Member
So guess I've got to be patient too! Ok.

I commute between Northampton and Denton, not sure how long that bit is, I'm guessing only 2 or 3 miles. There's a rough old pavement on one side, not cycle path or shared usage so no dropped curbs which is a bit off putting. I also think that I should use the road, but lately have started wondering if I shouldn't as I'm really slow on some sections and perhaps utting myself and others in danger.
 

squeaker

Über Member
Location
Steyning
To be honest, I try and avoid unrestricted (or 50mph limited) single carriageway roads at busy times, partly for the same sort of reasons that you hint at, but also 'cause I don't find it pleasant at all: too much noise, dust and exhaust fumes. (For those in Sussex, think A283 between Steyning and Washington: not flat, lots of blind bends, double white lines and solid traffic in the rush hour. Mind you, the slightly downhill bit between Upper Beeding and Shoreham is a real blast in the rush hour as I can hold 20mph+ and there are plenty of overtaking places.) Would a longer route using the local white roads be feasible / any better? (Sorry for lack of encouragement with main roads....)
 

Auntie Helen

Ich bin Powerfrau!
jdg88, I know exactly what you mean! I've had my trike for 9 months now and it's been over the last two months that I've noticed that hills have become much easier. I'm still slow up them but I now get to the top feeling pretty fresh, not too tired, and I remember at the beginning feeling like death at the top. Presumably the next stage is to begin to increase my pace up them (which is already starting to happen, my average speeds are increasing on particular journeys).

I know what you mean about uncomfortable roads, though. There are a couple of routes that I ride that I'll only do if it's not rush hour. I can't suggest anything other than stick with it, the more your ride and the faster you go the less you'll hold the traffic up! If there's no obvious alternative route then maybe you'll just have to grit your teeth and go with the busy road.
 

Andy in Sig

Vice President in Exile
I think safety is paramount and although we all insist on our rights as cyclists to use the road like any other road users, I would bear in mind the inconveniencing of the car drivers and would give the "rough old pavement" at the side a go, especially as it is likely to be more doable on a trike than on a bike. If that proves impossible though, then it is a matter of either sticking on the road or finding another route. Incidentally, while there are sound reasons for not riding a bike more or less in the gutter, I would imagine that it is feasible to safely tuck a trike much more into the side.
 

byegad

Legendary Member
Location
NE England
Riding a trike close to the curb invites a number of consequences. Including:-
Punctures of the front left wheel.
The inability to avoid a mitigate a close encounter by moving further left.
A rough ride as the left wheel finds all the drain covers and road edge potholes.
A distinct left lean as he camber is usually steeper at the edge of the road.

I'd be inclined to try to find an alternative route. There usually is one, albeit a little less direct. I used to commute by bike 16.2 miles each way. By car the journey was just under 15, mostly dual cariageway. The 16.2 miles was a joy and until I got into town at 14 miles or so I heard birds singing and could see how the crops/ploughing was comng on. Even in town my bike commute was on relatively quiet roads with only the last 3/4 of a mile being on busy 30mph roads.
 
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jdg88

New Member
Thanks for all the replies. I want to keep triking so I've been trying to find alternative routes. There's really only three routes open to me A) the A428 on or off the road on the pavement B) B-road approaching from the south C) B-road approaching from the north.

I'm going to give option C a try as the B-road from the south is far narrower, more blind bends and double white lines (albeit about 15% less traffic) than the A428.

Option C is probably 75% less traffic but narrow single lane-ish country roads.

It is all about compromise and finding something that feels safe for me and other road users. I already cycle as far to the left as seems fair, which is about 60cm from the curb. I'm resisting using the pavement but if option C doesn't work outthat'll have to be my next move.

I'm going to work out how much further this other route will be and test it one day next week. Will keep you posted, thanks again :girl:
 

arallsopp

Post of The Year 2009 winner
Location
Bromley, Kent
I'm on a recumbent, and find it gives me a different perspective from the DF roadbike it replaced. The journey can be pleasant. An extra 10 minutes is an extra 10 minutes doing the thing I love. I'm not racing from pillar to post, trying to get to work before the saddle is permanently integrated into my nether regions. I'm enjoying the ride, and commuting by happenstance.

Previously, I was commuting. If I enjoyed it, it would be a fortunate side product. I say set of a little earlier, pick a nice route, enjoy it, be safe.
 
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jdg88

New Member
Tried the alternative southerly route... oh god, took me 1hr 15mins to cover 14.5miles and was loads harder. That decided me, so yesterday tried half on the pavement and half on the road and I think that's going to be my compromise. Will have to decide between getting a gum guard (vibration and bumps on that rough old pavement!!!) or a nice Trice QNT with suspension.... :angry:

Thanks Chaps and Chapesses, your support has kept me triking!
 
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