Bicycle restrictor

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
Vorpal
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Re: Bicycle restrictor

Postby Vorpal » 6 May 2016, 12:36pm

I will readily admit to being polarised on this issue. I hate the things with a passion. I honestly don't see how anyone can cycle around the UK with children and *not* hate access controls on cycle tracks and shared use facilities.

I've never seen such things in other countries, and I don't see why they should be used in the UK. If we *honestly* want to make cycling a reasonable choice for anyone, we need to deal with things like illegal motorcycling in ways that do not exclude the most vulnerable users.
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mjr
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Re: Bicycle restrictor

Postby mjr » 6 May 2016, 12:42pm

pwa wrote:My other point was that claiming that an opposition to all A Frames (as opposed to some A frames) is in some way speaking for all people with mobility problems is incorrect. I have talked to people who use mobility scooters who favour use of A Frames in specific locations. I have spoken to cyclists who support their use in some locations.

I support their use in some locations but never on cycle tracks. I haven't yet seen an A-Barrier (and let's use that name, as they're intended as barriers for some users, even if they're actually barriers for more) on a cycle track more than a year old that doesn't have signs of crash damage on it.

The solution to motorcycle abuse is policing, not harming some legitimate users so that the majority can continue - and I believe it is discrimination because those harmed or blocked are disproportionately from certain protected minorities.
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MartinC
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Re: Bicycle restrictor

Postby MartinC » 6 May 2016, 4:22pm

I still haven't seen any cogent explanation of how any barrier can differentiate between a light motorcycle (i.e. most of them) and a regular bicycle, let alone all the other classes of legitimate vehicles. An explanation using the laws of Euclidean geometry or physics rather than some metaphysical or sociological diversion would be really useful in depolarising the debate.

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Re: Bicycle restrictor

Postby meic » 6 May 2016, 4:42pm

The bars on my 250cc dirt bike, typical of the sort of thing we want to keep out, are 77cm across, compared to 60cm for a normal cycle straight bar.
Once you have turned the bars enough to get through a 60cm gap you will be having to lift and bump the bike's front end. They are somewhat heavier than cycles and the A frame prevents you from getting into a good position for doing any lifting.
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AlaninWales
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Re: Bicycle restrictor

Postby AlaninWales » 6 May 2016, 4:43pm

pwa wrote:
AlaninWales wrote:pwa, you have a talent for entirely missing the point (and not just on my posts). Do you really believe that an "averagely fit 55 year old" (I doubt that if you cycle regularly) is really the target market if cycling is going to be (a) available to everyone (b) a reasonable choice for most (c) an help to improve our nation's health and (d) a help to reduce our nation's car dependence?

Or perhaps you don't feel these are reasonable aims of a transport policy?


Al, you miss my points.

My first point was that I'm not young and I'm not exceptionally fit for my age, and that my very long tandem is easily doable with properly installed A Frames. So you don't have to be young or super fit or on a solo road bike to get through an A Frame. Simple point, I thought. I certainly accept that for some an A Frame is a challenge they could do without, and I would prefer that A Frames are kept to a minimum. I have said that before.

My other point was that claiming that an opposition to all A Frames (as opposed to some A frames) is in some way speaking for all people with mobility problems is incorrect. I have talked to people who use mobility scooters who favour use of A Frames in specific locations. I have spoken to cyclists who support their use in some locations.

I feel that some on this forum get a bit too polarised on this issue. As someone who has helped to bring about the creation of new rail bed cycle tracks, then spoken to cyclists who are deterred from using them a second time after incidents with off-road motorbikes, I see this issue from more than one angle.

To your first point: This is entirely irrelevant unless you believe cycling facilities should be designed around people as able as yourself (or better). You are essentially saying "I'm all right Jack".
If we are getting down to it, I am 56 y/o, 6'6" martial artist and a few weeks ago was out-wrestling people half my age by the end of a two day workshop. I'm not exceptionally fit either (I know people who are!) but that doesn't mean that it would be acceptable for me to tell people to stand up physically to bullies "because I can". Again, that is the equivalent of your "my very long tandem is easily doable with properly installed A Frames".

To your second: A-frames clearly stop many designs of cycle (after all they are specifically designed to stop 'some' types of cycle!), which means that if they are used even occasionally on cycle tracks some people cannot rely on cycle tracks to get them from A to B. If they cannot rely on this then the use of tracks (that they haven't recently scouted for lack of A frames) is closed to them unless they want to risk having to turn back / cancel the trip or be forced to manhandle their machine through the barrier. Of course if (like you) they are able to do this (without losing their luggage / control of their accompanying toddler / whatever) then, like you, they are "all right Jack". For those unable to manhandle their vehicle plus luggage through the barrier, these are blocks to their use of the cycle tracks where they are installed. Perhaps you really do not care about the freedom of movement of less able people or of people accompanying small children? Your repetitive reiteration of your first point seems to affirm this.

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Re: Bicycle restrictor

Postby Vorpal » 6 May 2016, 10:15pm

MartinC wrote:I still haven't seen any cogent explanation of how any barrier can differentiate between a light motorcycle (i.e. most of them) and a regular bicycle, let alone all the other classes of legitimate vehicles. An explanation using the laws of Euclidean geometry or physics rather than some metaphysical or sociological diversion would be really useful in depolarising the debate.

Barriers cannot differentiate. They can only filter. Most of them filter by size. 62 or 65 cm are common sizes used for filtering at handlebar height. 90 and 100 cm are common sizes used for filtering at ankle height. Chicane type barriers are recommended to have 120 cm gaps so that mobility scooters and wheelchairs can get through them. Others, like the bike kissing gate style have other dimensions.

Unfortunately, the smaller motorbikes, like the Yamaha PW50 are basically the same width as a bicycle (a stock PW50 is 575 mm wide), while Easton, Truvativ, and other companies make bicycle handlebars that are 750 and 800 mm wide. Tandems, trailers, recumbents, trikes and other non-standard equipment do not always fit through these filters, either.

It is for this reason that the only place I have ever encountered motorcycles on a shared use facility was one that I could not get tandem and trailer onto.
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Re: Bicycle restrictor

Postby pwa » 7 May 2016, 8:19am

We are in danger of going round in circles here, so I'm going to retire from this thread (though I will read any replies).

Vorpal and Mjr, I agree that policing and education would be better methods of controlling illegal use of motorcycles. Then we could remove all A Frames (and other obstacles) safe in the knowledge that families using routes billed as being free from motor traffic would find them to be just that. But, in this area at least, that does nor seem to me to be remotely possible. The police are too overstretched. At best they can pop in, once in a while. I wish it were different. Educating people into not riding motorbikes where they shouldn't is probably worth a go,but it won't change things quickly. It will probably take many years, because we are talking about a real culture change.

Meic pointed out the way A Frames are meant to work with off-road motorbikes. They are the main concern in this area. I know A Frames won't work with smaller motorbikes.

Vorpal. I'm not saying your conclusions would be much different if you lived up one of the Welsh former coal mining valleys, but you might find yourself at least understanding the other view of A Frames. They are seen as a way of keeping motorcycles away form children and the elderly. If there were another way of doing that, it would be welcomed with open arms.

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Re: Bicycle restrictor

Postby Vorpal » 7 May 2016, 9:23am

pwa wrote:Vorpal. I'm not saying your conclusions would be much different if you lived up one of the Welsh former coal mining valleys, but you might find yourself at least understanding the other view of A Frames. They are seen as a way of keeping motorcycles away form children and the elderly. If there were another way of doing that, it would be welcomed with open arms.

You will never convince me that my children and I belong on a 50 mph dual carriageway because police and communities cannot be bothered to investigate and deal with illegal motorcycling.
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
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Re: Bicycle restrictor

Postby pwa » 7 May 2016, 9:44am

Vorpal wrote:
pwa wrote:Vorpal. I'm not saying your conclusions would be much different if you lived up one of the Welsh former coal mining valleys, but you might find yourself at least understanding the other view of A Frames. They are seen as a way of keeping motorcycles away form children and the elderly. If there were another way of doing that, it would be welcomed with open arms.

You will never convince me that my children and I belong on a 50 mph dual carriageway because police and communities cannot be bothered to investigate and deal with illegal motorcycling.


Sorry, I said I wouldn't reply, but I'm going to break my own rule to clarify one area. The A frames in the South Wales Valley communities that I spoke of are nowhere near 50mph dual carriageways, and if you had to use the road instead you would be on roads with 30mph limits, with pedestrians, zebra crossings and so forth. This particular motorcycle culture is probably something you are not familiar with, because it is strongly linked to the presence large areas of coniferous forestry on the steep hillsides. Motorcycling in the forestry is also illegal, but perhaps less antisocial. It is seen by many young males (and they are mainly males) as the one bit of freedom in their lives. The cycle tracks tend to go along the valley floor and coincidentally link up the forestry areas and the places where the motorcyclists live. They choose between riding illegally on the roads or illegally on the cycle tracks. A lot of local people wish the motorbikes would go away, but not to the extent that they would call the police and give a name. There is still a lot of community feeling in the valleys, and a manifestation of that is a willingness to put up with some bad behaviour from a member of your community because you know him, or you went to school with his dad, or you just wouldn't want to get him in trouble just because of that one thing he does that you don't like. I think it's a good instinct. But it makes it difficult for the police. And there are very few police in these communities. Most are PCSOs, on foot.

Signing off again. (I'll try to make it stick this time. Honest.)

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Re: Bicycle restrictor

Postby Vorpal » 7 May 2016, 11:42am

I fthese paths let onto forest and open land, how can any sort of barrier keep motorcyclists off the paths?
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
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Re: Bicycle restrictor

Postby pwa » 7 May 2016, 1:53pm

Vorpal wrote:I fthese paths let onto forest and open land, how can any sort of barrier keep motorcyclists off the paths?


They don't directly allow access to the forestry. They just provide possible routes to get from one area to another without using the roads, the forestry then being a short distance further on. I'd agree that paths that are not sealed along their length have no use for A Frames at the ends.