View Full Version : Preaching to the choir

10-31-2007, 03:48 PM
I would agree that this is a dead horse, let’s not beat much more…but I have to ask in regards the recent tragedies:
- were any of the individuals involved wearing brightly colored, visible clothing?
- did any of the individuals involved have visible, working lights on their bikes?
- And, not to rehash an old argument, were all the individuals involved wearing helmets?

While walking/MAXing home yesterday, it was easier to count the number of cyclist that 1.) were wearing some piece of bright, visible clothing, and 2.) had working and visible lights on their bikes. It was scary considering the number of congested and areas of merging traffic of all kinds.

Please, people, its common sense.

If you are wearing black, grey, or any dark-colored clothing, you may NOT be seen even if you have the ever-so-touted bike lights.

Bike lights are great, but that tiny, pinpoint of light so easily disappears in a vehicle’s numerous blind spot.

Honestly, who has not missed a cyclists or pedestrian or even another car while driving because the (inset mode of transporation) fall into a vehicles numerous blindspot - mental or otherwise. With so many cars, peds, and cyclist on the road, all people need to be aware that everyone is distracted in one way or another at every given moment.

It is just common sense.

10-31-2007, 04:47 PM
sigh, yawn, groan...

10-31-2007, 10:10 PM
OP, check out the other thread about what people are using for lights on their bikes. It may be in "tips and suggestions". Those "...tiny, pinpoints of light.." are probably the cheapest one bulb lights. The batteries go down and then they aren't so bright. Really good lights cost a lot of money.

Of the two most recent deaths, Tracy Sparling and Brett Jarolimek, I believe the former wasn't wearing a helmet. Near as I can determine from slim details in news reports, she died of head and chest injuries. Well, that sort of sounds like she got run over by the cement truck, in which case, what good's a helmet? But the reports of whether she actually got run over as oppsed to knocked down flying, are conflicting.

I think helmets, good lighting, bright clothes are good common sense, but hey..one person's good common sense is another's totalitarian authority.

10-31-2007, 10:17 PM
i'm not convinced wearing bright yellow or neon green does that much...if it's daytime, well then it's daytime. and if it's night you're not making out much color anyhow. you're just a shadowy figure on a bike and by the time you can see bright clothes i'd bet you're close enough to that figure to see them regardless of clothes color. am i wrong? (not a challenge...seriously asking)

reflective stripy stuff and lights, that's where my money is at.

10-31-2007, 10:35 PM
i'm a huge fan of the color. berate away, but i wear really bright lights when the light begins to fade.

10-31-2007, 10:47 PM
This morning, 10-31, I had to drive to an early morning doctor appointment in Clackamas. It was moderately foggy and still dark when I passed two cyclists at different locations on US 30.

The first was between Burlington and the Sauvie Island bridge. I first was able to see him at a distance of about 40 yards. He was wearing black, non reflective long cycling tights, a non reflective jacket with a yellow body and black sleeves. About 80% of the yellow was covered by his non reflective, black shoulder bag. His bike was equipped with a fairly bright headlight and a rear blinkie that looked like one of those long, narrow 5 LED Cateye lights. Since I am used to looking for bikes and because I have the same rear light, I was able to recognize him as a cyclist even before I could make out that it was a bike being ridden on the shoulder. This is an area with no street lights.

The second was between the Saint Johns bridge and the Kittredge bridge. I was first able to see him at a distance of about 200 yards. He was wearing a reflective (all over) yellow jacket. He had a reflective patch on each of his rear panniers. I was able to see all three of these reflective items way before his rear blinkie was obvious at about 40 yards. It too appeared to be the 5 LED Cateye light. He also had a good headlight. When I first noticed this cyclist, he was still too far away to recognize as a cyclist but I could tell, quite clearly, that there was something moving in the bike lane. There are some street lights in this area.

Having some bright reflective material on your clothing or your bike will make you visible at four times the distance of a good LED blinkie.

11-01-2007, 08:30 AM
Ah, the joys of Illuminite clothing.

My cycling jacket and leg warmers are 100% reflective. I've tested it out. They light up like National Lampoon's Christmas when light strikes them.

K'Tesh says you can get reflective material to put on your bike, and has the photos to prove how awesome it works. I think he said you could get it at someplace in Tigard, I forget the name. K'Tesh? Any help on that?

I've got front and rear lights, and reflective patches on my panniers, and reflectors on my wheels. I'm looking into a second rear light blinky.

Being visible is my #1 priority.

11-01-2007, 11:09 AM
Last week somebody rolled down their window to yell, "Hey your really visible from behind. That's great." I asked if the lights were working (two blinkies on the back). He said it was the reflections he saw. That would be the patches on the panniers and maybe a stripe on the yellow Burley jacket (with black sleaves). I happened to have both panniers that day.

Anyway, it was good to know, because I didn't really know what is visible on the back. I'm not too keen on wearing a orange traffic safety vest, but I'll be paying more attention to the reflective properties of my next purchases. I hope to find a jacket with the same reflective patches that my panniers have.

11-01-2007, 12:04 PM
I wonder where I can get some? I would like to sew them onto my regular biking clothes.

11-01-2007, 05:02 PM
I wonder where I can get some? I would like to sew them onto my regular biking clothes.

Here's an online source. Look under Brilliance ANSI garment tapes.

garment tape (http://www.reflexiteamericas.com/psafety.htm)

Locally, check Sandersons Safety Supply at SE 3rd and Taylor.

11-01-2007, 05:05 PM
I wonder where I can get some? I would like to sew them onto my regular biking clothes.
Sanderson Safety Supply (http://www.sandersonsafety.com/) and Fabric Depot (https://www.fabricdepot.com/).

11-12-2007, 12:11 AM
I'll second this -- reflective stuff is far more visible than any non-reflective color, no matter how intense an orange it might be. A car's headlights don't have to conserve so much battery power, so they are probably much brighter than that flashing LED tail light.

I usually go to GI Joe's or any similar hardware/sports/general store and buy a roll of reflective adhesive tape. It's made by 3M and a number of generic brands. It usually is available at least in white, sometimes also in red or yellow. I tape the vertical tubes on the front and rear of my bike. Then something stands out no matter what I'm wearing.

11-12-2007, 05:33 AM
thanks for the links!

11-12-2007, 11:40 AM
I've noticed that some rear blinky lights are really hard to see, despite all their blinky-ness. It is usually the pattern blinks (side to side, up and down) that are hard to see. They look really visible from up close, like when you are holding the blinky light, but from 20 feet away, the individual lights all blend together. With the pattern blinks, the light is never "off" as one or more bulbs are always lit. The standard on/off blinks seem to be more visible from farther away, because there is a contrast between the on and off blinks.