LISTSERV mailing list manager LISTSERV 16.5

Help for VTBIKEPEDPOLICY-L Archives


VTBIKEPEDPOLICY-L Archives

VTBIKEPEDPOLICY-L Archives


VTBIKEPEDPOLICY-L@LIST.UVM.EDU


View:

Message:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

By Topic:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

By Author:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

Font:

Proportional Font

LISTSERV Archives

LISTSERV Archives

VTBIKEPEDPOLICY-L Home

VTBIKEPEDPOLICY-L Home

VTBIKEPEDPOLICY-L  March 1999

VTBIKEPEDPOLICY-L March 1999

Subject:

Re: Plain Words About Bike Track

From:

Gerry Hawkes <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Vermont Bicycle and Pedestrian Policy Discussion <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 30 Mar 1999 07:40:27 -0500

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (343 lines)

I will do my best to address the concerns Peter expresses below.
My responses follow each concern he expresses.  I do believe that
bicycle pedestrian policy is well served by getting as many new
ideas out, tested and demonstrated as possible.  Not all ideas
will be good and one idea or new approach will not fit all
situations.  Also many ideas and new approaches take time to
evolve into viable solutions.

Gerry Hawkes
Bike Track, Inc.
Woodstock, Vermont

www.biketrack.com

-----Original Message-----
From: Peter K. Duval <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask]
<[log in to unmask]>
Date: Monday, March 29, 1999 11:14 AM
Subject: [VTBIKEPEDPOLICY-L] Plain Words About Bike Track


>Was: Re: [VTBIKEPEDPOLICY-L] Bad Road Reports - Bridges
>Now:  Plain Words About Bike Track
>
>Gerry Hawkes wrote:
>
>> ...if we are to address the serious constraints to
>> bicycling and walking along public roads and highways
nationwide
>> then new solutions must be demonstrated and tested until they
>> meet federal standards.
>>
>> - Gerry
>>
>> www.biketrack.com
>
>This sounds high minded, but this discussion list is about
appropriate policy
>and design for Vermont conditions.  Below I'll discuss how Bike
Track fails
>basic design considerations in the interest of profit.  But
first the Truss:

RESPONSE:  Bike Track was started after many years of deep
concern over the effects of air pollution on our forests,
particularly transportation generated pollution.  I gave serious
consideration to setting up a not-for-profit organization to
develop new ideas to encourage less polluting means of
transportation, but decided that the only way to attract
sufficient investment and generate the revenue needed to make a
meaningful difference was through a for-profit corporation.
Quite frankly there are many easier ways to make a profit than
promoting new ideas for bicycling, walking and wheelchair use.

>
>Truss Ramp
>**************************
>Having looked over the web pages for the truss ramp, my first
reaction is that
>this is another product designed for marketing to a non-biking
audience.  It
>has a flimsy appearance, limited span, limited width, and would
be of
>questionable usefulness for high spans and public ways.  I may
change my mind,
>but I think that Bike Track should stick to marketing this
product as a mail
>order ramp for low height, low traffic, private installations.
Temporary
>installation for pedestrians at construction sites might be a
use.  Why not
>sell this to Gardener's Supply as a "private" cantilever on the
Blue Bridge to
>see whether people are willing to use it in a high installation.

RESPONSE:   You are correct in your initial reaction.  What you
see on the web is designed for short spans of 30' or less in
wheelchair ramp applications.  For longer, wider, and more
heavily loaded spans, the same modular concept would need to be
increased in size and strength, and features such as safety mesh
would need to be added.   Since the modular truss system is
relatively light weight, in many cases it could be at least
partially supported on the outside of existing highway bridges.
To properly modify, test and demonstrate a modular system to meet
ASHTO and other federal standards will require far more time and
money than Bike Track can muster.  This is why we put forth the
example of the wheelchair ramp application as a proof of initial
concept that deserves furthur consideration. Gardeners Supply is
a good suggestion, but I would want to see the modular truss
system rigorously tested before that type of installation is
undertaken.

>Bike Track
>**************************
>
>Bike Track is more about marketing and making money than the
promoting public
>interest and good design.  As an example: Little Parker Wall-It
>(http://www.biketrack.com/littlepa.htm), a wheelbender bike
rack, is heavily
>marketed to non-bikers as a painless (in terms of space or
consideration of
>cyclists) solution to the problem of bicycles.

RESPONSE:   Bike racks that hold bicycles by front wheel with
single vertical bars are notorious for allowing bicycles to tip
with the possibility of twisting rims.  The Little Parker Wall-It
module has double vertical bars on both sides plus a mid-cross
bar that prevents the bicycles from tipping over even if you
push.  This bar configuration spreads the force on the wheel so
that barring major impact, say from a car bumping into the bike,
the wheel will not twist.  For even more stability, the security
arm may be pivoted up and locked to the bike frame.

>
>The Little Parker should have been withdrawn years ago.  Bike
Track's failure
>to do so demonstrates that Bike Track is more interested in
testing our
>patience than testing designs.  Here are the many ways
(partially ranked) in
>which the Little Parker fails as a design concept:
>
>(1)  Encourages Poor Site Design
>*************************
>Little Parker invites designers to tack bike storage onto a
design as an
>afterthought.  Bike Track emphasizes the compactness of the
Little Parker, and
>encourages designers to place racks near doorways,  walkways and
other busy
>areas.  This creates conflict between the parked bicycle and
passing
>pedestrians, leading to some specific problems mentioned below.
Fundamentally
>though, if a site designer doesn't confront bike storage as a
design issue,
>then poor, unusable storage is the result.

RESPONSE:  One way to encourage people to use bicycles rather
than cars is to provide bicycle parking and security right at the
cyclists' desired destinations.  Often there is no room to do
this with larger bike racks that must sit out away from a wall
plus there are often aesthetic objections.  Modules may be angled
at 35 degrees to reduce the projection of bicycles into sidewalk
space.  In addition to providing convenience, bicycles that are
dispersed and secured individually or in small groups in high
visibility locations are much less likely to be stolen than
bicycles parked in large groups in less visible spots.
>
>(2) Wheelbender
>*************************
>The Little Parker supports bicycles by one wheel rim.  This
violates a basic
>principle of rack design.  Racks should balance by the bike's
seat post to get
>a barely passing grade, and by both the seat post and head tube
to get any
>higher grade.  The principle of two point balancing ensures not
only stability,
>but also acceptance of a variety of bike types and
configurations.  Because the
>Little Parker is often placed in high traffic areas, and bikes
project  well
>away from the rack, wheel-bending is enhanced by bumping from
passing
>pedestrians and vehicles.

RESPONSE:  Please see previous response.  With the security arm
locked in place bikes are well supported from the front wheel to
the frame.  The security arm serves to lock-out the pivoting of
the front wheel thus keeping the bike straight and upright.  In
many other bike racks, if a bike is not properly parked, the
front wheel often turns sideways.

>
>(3) Bare Fat Tire Requirement
>*************************
>Take a look at the bikes in the promotional photos for the
Little Parker:  no
>fenders, no pannier racks.  Indeed, mostly mountain bikes.  The
Little Parker
>is designed for the sales brochures, not the real world.  The
Little Parker
>will only accept a bare wheel and because it relies on a snug
fit, fat mountain
>bike tires are required to give the illusion of stability.

RESPONSE:  Little Parkers are designed to park bicycles by the
front wheel.  The largest mountain bike tires fit snuggly.  The
narrowest racing bike tires fit with room to spare which means
that when the security arm is not employed a bike with racing
tires may lean 5 or 10 degrees, but will not tip because of the
multiple rail design.  In most cases the security arm is
employed.  Because bicycles are parked front wheel first, fenders
or paniers have not been a problem.  If you have front paniers
and need to lock the bike using the security arm, you will
naturally remove the paniers and take them with you.

>
>(4) Unrecognizable As Bike Storage
>*************************
>As noted in (2), bikes need to lean frame-against-rack.  This is
why you'll see
>trees and light poles fully populated with locked bikes while
wheelbender bike
>racks sit empty nearby.  With its diminutive stature, complex
design and poor
>placement, the Little Parker is not recognizable as good bike
storage.
>Consequently, it is not used.

RESPONSE:  Poor placement can be a problem no matter what the
design of the bike rack.  Since Little Parkers are so different
in design, we have found it helpful to lock a demonstration bike
in one module of a grouping so that cyclists can see clearly see
what they are for and how they are used.
>
>(5) Complex
>*************************
>Lots of cutting, drilling and welding make the Little Parker a
complex
>fabrication.  The security arm adds an unnecessary moving part,
which further
>complicates the design and use of the device.

RESPONSE:  This is a trade off to achieve a compact modular
design.  The security arm is extremely strong and has a large
diameter stainless steel pivot which is virtually maintenance
free and not at all complex.  Remember this is not designed to be
the least expensive bicycle parking device, but is intended to
fill a need not met by other designs.

>
>(6) Hazardous
>*************************
>The swinging security arm is an invitation to mashing fingers
against bike or
>the Little Parker.  And when not in use as a rack, the easy
swinging arm must
>really appeal to toddlers!  The sharp corners of the Little
Parker ensure
>maximum injury to anyone unlucky enough fall near the rack.
This is enhanced
>by the Little Parker's shin height, dark matte finish and
typical free standing
>placement near walkways.

RESPONSE:  The Little Parker is designed so that planters or
benches may be installed on top for safe, attractive,
multi-functional installations.  The majority of installations
are actually against walls.  We have had no reports of tripping,
finger pinching or toddlers playing with bike racks.
>
>(7) Low Durability
>**************************
>The high  leverage of the security arm provides opportunity to
vandals as well
>as toddlers.  The many nooks and crannies soak up salt and grit.
In many
>installations, base mounting provides a weak attachment.

RESPONSE:  As with any good bike rack we recommend anchoring into
concrete.  Two 1/2" anchor bolts set into 4 way concrete anchor
bolts provide so much holding power that a two hundred pound man
pulling as hard as he can against the security arm can not begin
to wiggle a module.  There is provision for four anchor points in
the bottom of each module, but only two are needed.  Some of our
older racks only had one anchor hole and thus required connector
bars for addtional strength and stability.  Also some
unsuccessful attempts were made to anchor to asphalt in early
installations.  I don't know of any bike racks that successfully
anchor to asphalt.

Also earlier powder coat finishes did not hold up to salt well.
We have made many improvements in powder coat finishing, but
still would not recommend that the base of the modules be exposed
to excessive deicing salt.

>
>(8) Insecurity
>**************************
>Not as much of an issue in Vermont: the Little Parker does not
provide for
>double frame locking with U-locks.

RESPONSE:  You can certainly lock the frame and front wheel to
the security arm with a U-Lock then lock the rear wheel to the
frame with a second U-Lock.  Remember there is additional
protection by being able to secure bicycles where they are easily
visible.

>
>(9) Low Capacity
>**************************
>A single Little Parker module can only claim to provide a single
parking
>opportunity.  It is costly, compared to the alternatives:  a
railing or
>inverted-u provides double the capacity per module;  parking
meter rings are
>cheap and effective; ribbon racks, though sacrificing the second
balance point,
>offer multiple parking opportunities per installed unit.

RESPONSE:  These are valid points, but there are numerous
situations where the other solutions are not appropriate.  For
example:

    Railing:  Often there is a window or a wall that will not
allow a railing to be attached
    Inverted U:  Frequently not enought sidewalk space or not
acceptable aestheticly
    Parking meter rings:  Can interfere with access to meters and
sidewalks when bicycles are parked
    Ribbon racks:  Bicycles often tip and ribbon racks require
more space.

In short you should look at all types of bicycle parking and
security racks and decide which type suits a particular need
best.  Little Parker Wall-It modules are not a universal bicycle
parking solution, but they fill  a need for space saving bicycle
parking.

NOTE:  I do not think we should be discussing products in such
detail in this forum, but I felt I should address Peter's
concerns.  I do appreciate suggestions for improvement, but the
suggestions should be directed to me at [log in to unmask] and not
through a forum which really should be discussing issues more
closely related to bicycle/pedestrian policy.


>
>-Peter
>
>
>--
>Peter K. Duval                         +1 802 899 1132
>98 Sleepy Hollow Road                   fax:  899 2430
>Essex Junction, VT 05452-2798      [log in to unmask]
>USA                            www.emba.uvm.edu/~duval

Top of Message | Previous Page | Permalink

Advanced Options


Options

Log In

Log In

Get Password

Get Password


Search Archives

Search Archives


Subscribe or Unsubscribe

Subscribe or Unsubscribe


Archives

August 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
May 2012
March 2012
January 2012
March 2011
February 2011
October 2010
September 2010
July 2010
April 2010
March 2010
December 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
October 2008
May 2008
March 2008
February 2008
December 2007
September 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
June 2006
May 2006
December 2005
November 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
October 2004
September 2004
August 2004
July 2004
June 2004
May 2004
April 2004
March 2004
February 2004
January 2004
December 2003
November 2003
October 2003
September 2003
August 2003
July 2003
June 2003
May 2003
April 2003
March 2003
February 2003
December 2002
November 2002
October 2002
September 2002
August 2002
July 2002
June 2002
May 2002
April 2002
March 2002
February 2002
January 2002
December 2001
November 2001
October 2001
September 2001
August 2001
July 2001
June 2001
May 2001
April 2001
March 2001
February 2001
January 2001
December 2000
November 2000
October 2000
September 2000
August 2000
July 2000
June 2000
May 2000
April 2000
March 2000
February 2000
January 2000
December 1999
November 1999
October 1999
September 1999
August 1999
July 1999
June 1999
May 1999
April 1999
March 1999
February 1999

ATOM RSS1 RSS2



LIST.UVM.EDU

CataList Email List Search Powered by the LISTSERV Email List Manager