Get Home Bike in action

Share a survival experience with us and explain what you learned from it. You might help someone.

Moderator: ZS Global Moderators

Post Reply
User avatar
sheddi
ZS Global Moderator
ZS Global Moderator
Posts: 3428
Joined: Fri Aug 10, 2007 6:33 am
Favorite Zombie Movies: 28 Days Later
Shaun of the Dead
Location: Hampshire, England

Get Home Bike in action

Post by sheddi » Wed Nov 26, 2008 1:05 pm

You might recall from earlier in the year that I'm in a carpool for my daily commute, which means that I only have my own vehicle available to me at work for one or two days a week. You might also recall that I'm keeping a bicycle at work, mostly to use when travelling from one part of our plant to another but also as a "get home bike" in case I need to leave work independently of the carpool.

Today I got to try this out. Having travelled to work with my carpool, I then discovered (OK, remembered might be a better word :roll: ) that I was due back home for a private appointment mid-morning. Weighing up the options I decided this was the perfect opportunity to try out my Get Home Bike.

Situation:
- my place of work is approx. 8 miles from home on rural asphalt roads. There's roughly 80 metres of ascent (and slightly more descent) over the route.
- I had roughly an hour to get to my appointment.
- the weather was cool (5C, 40F) dry and overcast, with a slight headwind.
- I'm wearing office clothes (leather shoes, cotton trousers, long-sleeved polycotton shirt ) plus a fleece jacket, cycle helmet and a hi-visibility vest. I'm carrying my EDC backpack (which I haven't posted here yet).
- my bike is as previously pictured, with the addition of lights and a bell:
Image

I hope no-one's too surprised to learn that I successfully made it home :) It took 35 minutes, including a brief stop half way up a hill for one of those "I'm too old for this shit" rests.

There are some learning points, most of which you might have predicted:
- I can bike home from work in 35 minutes or so. This knowledge is valuable to me in itself.
- 8 miles by bike doesn't sound all that far, but if you're an out-of-shape late-thirties desk-jockey whose usual cycle journey is a mile or less, it's surprisingly hard work. I need more practice at this sort of thing.
- I must learn to pace myself better. I set off at (what passes for) a sprint, and after the first two miles was regretting it.
- office clothes aren't ideal for cycling in, but they will do in a pinch.
- a hi-visibility vest is surprisingly windproof, and is a useful addition to a fleece if there's no other shell garment available.
- my ears, nose and especially hands were cold. I didn't have any warm gloves, but at the 2-mile mark I stopped and put on a pair of nitrile gloves from my FAK, which kept the wind off and helped a lot.

Going back to work after my appointment, I put my bike in my car and drove ...
Be Pure!
Be Vigilant!
Behave!


Member
ZSC:010 - UK Chapter
My EDC / GHB (needs updating)
Foundation licence holder - Mike-Six-mumble-mumble-mumble.

AmirMortal
* * * * *
Posts: 2485
Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2008 2:59 am
Favorite Zombie Movies: ALL! 28 days later...
Location: The Gunshine State

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by AmirMortal » Wed Nov 26, 2008 1:12 pm

Good on ya!

That is a good thing to know about your area.

BTW keeping a bike at work for that purpose is a great idea. Unfortunately for me most days I work I'm 80+ miles from home, and usually in a new location each day.

User avatar
Jacob Creutzfeldt
* * *
Posts: 706
Joined: Sat Sep 20, 2008 1:32 am
Location: Sweden

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by Jacob Creutzfeldt » Wed Nov 26, 2008 1:24 pm

sheddi wrote: - 8 miles by bike doesn't sound all that far, but if you're an out-of-shape late-thirties desk-jockey whose usual cycle journey is a mile or less, it's surprisingly hard work. I need more practice at this sort of thing.
Just do it more often. :D

It's not that far, you just need to get used to it. You'll find "new" muscles in the begining. :lol: And biking more often will get you in better shape. I guess you store the helmet and vest at work, so a pair of gloves and a beanie to put under the helmet would be a nice addition for the colder months.

Good plan, having an alternative transport from work.
The light at the end of the tunnel? It's a train.

User avatar
andygates
* * * * *
Posts: 4264
Joined: Thu Mar 22, 2007 11:33 am
Favorite Zombie Movies: ROTLD 2 ;)
Location: UK
Contact:

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by andygates » Wed Nov 26, 2008 1:47 pm

I can't argue with any of that.

Nicely empowering, getting to and from work under your own steam, isn't it? :)
Czechnology: "If you have to ask an internet forum for confirmation on whether or not a Revolution is coming, the answer is always no."

Free UK & Ireland Street and Topo maps for Garmin: ravenfamily.org/andyg/maps (updated weekly) - OpenStreetMap

ScottAW
* *
Posts: 153
Joined: Mon Oct 06, 2008 8:44 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: Dawn of the dead, dead alive
Location: State College, PA, USA

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by ScottAW » Wed Nov 26, 2008 4:52 pm

Good thinking on that bike. I'm lucky enough to live 1.5 miles from work, so the walk isn't too bad.

Definately ride that bike a bit more, one ride a week will keep you in shape to ride 8 miles with ease. you might actually like it.

User avatar
ninja-elbow
ZS Global Moderator
ZS Global Moderator
Posts: 14171
Joined: Sun May 13, 2007 12:39 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: DotD '04
DotD
NotLD
Location: Portland, OR

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by ninja-elbow » Thu Nov 27, 2008 1:40 am

I used to ride more often (2 years ago) but let off after some bike tickets and getting a truck. I rode my longest since stopping right after Charlotte and Drake were in town and did 10 miles. Not so bad, as has been put already, for a late 30s, overweight desk jocky. I did learn that my groin area sure got used to not being on a bike seat real quick though.

I even have a comfy spring seat and it still gave me some problems.

I suggest riding more often and be aware of the nerves and plumbing in the lower region.
President ZSC011
Part Viking, Part Siamese

User avatar
andygates
* * * * *
Posts: 4264
Joined: Thu Mar 22, 2007 11:33 am
Favorite Zombie Movies: ROTLD 2 ;)
Location: UK
Contact:

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by andygates » Thu Nov 27, 2008 1:03 pm

Dude: Bike shorts. That padding is God.
Czechnology: "If you have to ask an internet forum for confirmation on whether or not a Revolution is coming, the answer is always no."

Free UK & Ireland Street and Topo maps for Garmin: ravenfamily.org/andyg/maps (updated weekly) - OpenStreetMap

User avatar
ninja-elbow
ZS Global Moderator
ZS Global Moderator
Posts: 14171
Joined: Sun May 13, 2007 12:39 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: DotD '04
DotD
NotLD
Location: Portland, OR

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by ninja-elbow » Thu Nov 27, 2008 1:09 pm

Oh yeah - I have 'em. I even have some shorts with bike shorts in them. I had them on on my 10 mile ride. It still shut off my "pee flow" a bit so I tilted my seat forward some until further notice. :oops:
President ZSC011
Part Viking, Part Siamese

Squirrley
* * * * *
Posts: 6672
Joined: Thu Dec 22, 2005 3:35 pm
Location: Boulder, CO/Trinidad, CO

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by Squirrley » Thu Nov 27, 2008 1:32 pm

andygates wrote:Dude: Bike shorts. That padding is God.

+1. Although I've found the amount of padding to usually be not a whole lot, which is probably good or you couldn't walk around in them at all. I don't put on bike shorts for around town stuff (max a couple miles one way), and since I don't ride all that much when I do a real ride I always feel like I need 3x the padding for 20 or so miles until my paranium gets broken in again :oops:

If you're going to get/upgrade one thing, bike shoes and clipless pedals help a lot more in my experience. (for these short rides where you don't want to get all geared up)
Gundown wrote:Then I saw the bear and thought... holy shit this rum is fucking awesome!
Image

User avatar
velojym
ZS Member
ZS Member
Posts: 2823
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 1:57 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: Fido
Location: Alabama

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by velojym » Thu Nov 27, 2008 1:48 pm

Any longer ride I've been on called for bike shorts and my SPDs. I've used Looks and the Shimano road cleats before, but
I'm pretty happy with my spuds even on road rides. I've done a few centuries, and I can't imagine having done them without
a good chamois between my thighs.
My new touring bike, however, has convertible flat/SPD pedals and a Brooks saddle. Great for those shorter rides, and the saddle... oh, how I wish I'd tried it years sooner.
Wouldn't it be great if all wars could be fought just by the assholes who started them?
-The Postman

User avatar
Vindex
* * * * *
Posts: 1838
Joined: Thu Dec 30, 2004 12:21 pm
Location: Night Hawk Forest, South Porcupine

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by Vindex » Fri Nov 28, 2008 3:40 pm

I use mountain bike up 14 km timber road to get to nearest town, do this 1/week for last 8 months, and recommend:

-swap out racing saddle for padded wide butt seat
-lock
-under saddle mounted bicycle tool kit, with spare inner tube and emergency poncho
-small hand operated air pump that mounts on water bottle attachments
-water bottle as well, & keep it filled 'cause u'll dehydrate depending on journey
-need mirror to see what's coming behind you; helmet mounted are good
-orange flag on a stick thing that mounts to rear axle, and also reflective ankle strap, are good for visibility
-for carrying additional supplies/equipment, milk crate baskets can be mounted on front handle bars and on top of the rear carrier. Mounting milk crates is easy; can use steel strapping, gear straps, baling wire, coat hanger wire, even zip ties and bungee cord in a pinch

User avatar
jamoni
ZS Member
ZS Member
Posts: 14985
Joined: Wed Apr 21, 2004 6:50 pm
Location: st louis

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by jamoni » Fri Nov 28, 2008 7:02 pm

Awesome! Ain't it great when preps pay off?
I found that for cold weather, you didn't need much in the way of clothing. I usually wore a windbreaker over a long sleeve Tshirt, rain pants over shorts or regular pants, GOOD thinsulate gloves, and a balaclava On really cold days a scarf is your friend. The trick is to ride hard enough to generate heat, but not hard enough to sweat.
JoergS wrote:Realistically, I think I can launch a nine pound chain saw at 50 fps from a shoulder mounted rubber powered bazooka...
squinty wrote:I reserve the right to yell "Dookyhole!" - or it's Hebrew equivalent if such a thing exists - whilst dispensing a barrage of palm strikes at my opponent.

User avatar
Shmerlin
* * * * *
Posts: 5182
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2005 4:25 pm
Location: West Palm, FL
Contact:

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by Shmerlin » Fri Nov 28, 2008 7:10 pm

I wish I could bike to work, Unfortunatly I work on the FL turnpike now, and bikes are Illegal on the toll road LOL.
Dinner Adventures, My restuarant review blog.

User avatar
velojym
ZS Member
ZS Member
Posts: 2823
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 1:57 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: Fido
Location: Alabama

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by velojym » Fri Nov 28, 2008 8:11 pm

I'll have to disagree with an above post on something.

Wide, padded (and gel) saddles WILL hurt you in the long run. They're only really good for big, fat folks
who'll probably never go farther than around the block.

Let your butt get used to a normal saddle, and even try a few out (give 'em about a hundred or more miles each)
to see what works best. The soft padding will conform to your butt to the extent that you'll have way more contact
than is necessary, and a heck of a lot more chafing.

We've had a lot of folks on club rides disagree, only to sheepishly repent later. Even I tried it, way back when I
was just starting, and by the time I could ride 5 miles... I was learning the error of my ways, the hard way.
Wouldn't it be great if all wars could be fought just by the assholes who started them?
-The Postman

User avatar
jamoni
ZS Member
ZS Member
Posts: 14985
Joined: Wed Apr 21, 2004 6:50 pm
Location: st louis

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by jamoni » Fri Nov 28, 2008 9:50 pm

Velojym speaks truth. I like saddles similar to these on my touring and commuting bikes, but I have a much narrower and less padded seat on my single speed bike, since I spend a lot more time standing up. :) The only thing a bigger saddle does is create more friction. That equals more heat, more sweat, more soreness, more work.
JoergS wrote:Realistically, I think I can launch a nine pound chain saw at 50 fps from a shoulder mounted rubber powered bazooka...
squinty wrote:I reserve the right to yell "Dookyhole!" - or it's Hebrew equivalent if such a thing exists - whilst dispensing a barrage of palm strikes at my opponent.

User avatar
velojym
ZS Member
ZS Member
Posts: 2823
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 1:57 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: Fido
Location: Alabama

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by velojym » Fri Nov 28, 2008 11:15 pm

Image

Ahhh... heaven on wheels.
Wouldn't it be great if all wars could be fought just by the assholes who started them?
-The Postman

User avatar
ninja-elbow
ZS Global Moderator
ZS Global Moderator
Posts: 14171
Joined: Sun May 13, 2007 12:39 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: DotD '04
DotD
NotLD
Location: Portland, OR

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by ninja-elbow » Sat Nov 29, 2008 12:34 am

Is that a Brooks B.17? I only ask because I constantly go to Rivendell and drool over the catalogue and recognized it.
President ZSC011
Part Viking, Part Siamese

User avatar
velojym
ZS Member
ZS Member
Posts: 2823
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 1:57 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: Fido
Location: Alabama

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by velojym » Sat Nov 29, 2008 12:37 am

ninja-elbow wrote:Is that a Brooks B.17? I only know because I constantly go to Rivendell and drool over the catalogue and recognized it.
Shore is. That's a photo from elsewhere, but mine is a honey brown B17 just like it, sittin' pretty on my Surly tourer.
Wouldn't it be great if all wars could be fought just by the assholes who started them?
-The Postman

User avatar
SweetTea
* * * *
Posts: 949
Joined: Sun Nov 18, 2007 2:21 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: I kick it old school: NOtLD
Location: Kansas City, MO

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by SweetTea » Tue Dec 02, 2008 3:53 pm

Good for you for trying out your preps and getting some exercise! You made respectable time given your dress and the infrequency with which you do that ride. You're right about needing to fix that cold hands problem. For anything colder than 5 degrees C I use gloves and a stocking cap/beanie along with a windbreaker. For gloves, I love running gloves. They conform to every nuance of your hand and insulate well while still breathing enough so that you don't sweat. Also, you can get off-brand ones at athletic stores for about 10 USD.
amd2800barton wrote:
LakotaJones wrote:Holy shit. I always thought Sweet Tea was a girl...
actually so did I. Didn't want to be the first one to say anything :P
Image

User avatar
eugene
* * * * *
Posts: 2211
Joined: Tue Aug 21, 2007 9:27 pm

Re: Get Home Bike in action

Post by eugene » Tue Dec 02, 2008 8:43 pm

Few years ago we had kmart bikes and rode occasionally on some of the local park trails then were invited to ride the athens trail http://www.seorf.ohiou.edu/~xx088/maps/maps.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
We were not in shape at all for it was quite sore for the next few days and we were worn out by the halfway point and turned around and went back.
Riding a bike is just like going to the gym unless you do the routine a couple times a week you'll not be in shape for it. If your serious about using a bike as part of a get home plan then you need to get the practice time in. Is your carpool schedule defined ahead of time, you know what mornings you will be driving? I'd ride the bike home the evening before and then haul it back that morning. Get a bike rack or whatever you need to make this happen, another plus to that then is you can take the bike on your vehicle if you need to bug out from your home.
Out bikes were stolen out of our shed shortly afterward and we finally replaced them last month after we moved to a better neighborhood. I bought real bikes used on craigslist, here's mine
Image
2004 Silverado ECSB Z71 5.3L
2009 Giant Cypress DX, 1996 Specialized Rockhopper
Smith and Wesson M&P9c, M&P22
Map of our travels. Our EveryTrail page
My Garmin Connect Profile

Post Reply

Return to “Survival Experiences”