Road riders wearing black – why?

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  • Road riders wearing black – why?
  • Premier Icon iainc
    Subscriber

    I was riding home last week along a cycle path which runs along side the road but is totally segregated from the road, cars can’t access the path or stray onto it. There was a guy coming towards me with a very bright light in strobe mode, this was broad daylight, all he was doing was blinding oncoming riders. Idiot

    A77 by chance ? If so I’ve seen this a few times too….

    Premier Icon binners
    Subscriber

    Stewart Maconi made the comment that if you want to pass completely unnoticed through any environment in the UK, put a fluorescent jacket on

    jekkyl
    Member

    In the day make it gay, at night make it bright.
    In the dark make it light and get yourself seen.
    Whether working for a living or riding for your pleasure
    Let the world see that life is something that you treasure
    and get yourself seen.

    bigyinn
    Member

    glupton1976 – Member

    I recently had a 370 post conversation about this on Facebook with TJ.

    I could copy and paste that if you want – just to save the same thing being duplicated on here.
    Don’t you dare. I missed important bits of Downton abbey trying to read that lot.
    Suffice to say it descended into cries of hypocrisy, helmets and rotational injuries.
    😆

    Premier Icon ton
    Subscriber

    Cycling in the Uk is not like cycling in Holland or Denmark though is it?

    timc……please explain how it differs?

    bikebouy
    Member

    I ride in Black, I do so cos’ it’s sexy.

    I don’t however ride at night on busy main roads, all my riding is done in the quiet Hampshire Lanes.

    If on the foldie/fixie in That Lunnnjon I ride in jeans and jacket, however I have just bought a very dashing burnt Orange variety so I’d class that as “bright”.

    Lights go without saying, roadie has one on front, two on seatpost, foldie one on front, two on rear seatstays, fixie has one on front one on rear.

    FunkyDunc
    Member

    Driving to work today it was very overcast, 80/90% of cars had headlights on, but I passed so many people riding fully in black with no lights.

    I just don’t get it. I started cycling to work again in April and have always used bright clothing and day glow rucksack cover. The last few months ive started using lights, even on sunny days (which has made a huge difference to how much room people give you)

    I know its none of my business etc etc, but I just cant understand why people are doing it, especially after unfortunately you hear more and more about cyclist deaths on the road.

    Gary_M
    Member

    It was Ian, just near Fenwick.

    ndthornton
    Member

    I ride in dark colors as they look better and I dont want to look like a lollypop man. Does anyone have any hard stats that say dressing like a wolly decreases your chances of being hit??…. cos logic definitely says otherwise.

    The only reason a driver should not be able so see a cyclist (given that all cars come equipped with powerful head lights) is if they are not looking at them. Rear lights are are a good idea so that a driver can have prior warning of a cyclist before his/her dipped beam reaches the rider. Before this time no amount of reflective gaudy color schemes will illuminate you as there is no light to reflect.

    Premier Icon D0NK
    Subscriber

    I’d guess it’s cause they dressed for a ride not for a health and safety convention. If it was night time and they had no lights and dark clothes feel free to have a rant, if it was daytime and they just got caught out in low light I don’t see why they deserve scorn. 80-90% cars had lights on so presumably there were a few dark coloured cars with no lights on – why are you not having a pop at them?

    Premier Icon zilog6128
    Subscriber

    Stewart Maconi made the comment that if you want to pass completely unnoticed through any environment in the UK, put a fluorescent jacket on

    This is because people won’t wonder about what you are doing or question your authority to be there, not because it makes you literally invisible.

    If we’re talking safety then lights and reflective strips/panels have a much greater impact than fabric colour in low light conditions and in normal light conditions black is perfectly visible.

    Eh?

    So you’re saying that a material that requires light to bounce off it is better than hi-viz in low light conditions (when not all cars have headlights on) and black is as visible as a hi-viz in ‘normal light conditions’ (whatever they are)?

    ‘k…

    😕

    Not once in my life can I remember being out in the car and not seeing a cyclist because he was wearing a dark coloured top (I’m not starting on shorts). I’ve been caught out by someone in dark clothes at night without lights, but the solution for him wasn’t to put a different coloured hoodie on it was to get some lights.

    Not once in my life can I remember being out in the car and not seeing a cyclist because he was wearing a dark coloured top (I’m not starting on shorts). I’ve been caught out by someone in dark clothes at night without lights, but the solution for him wasn’t to put a different coloured hoodie on it was to get some lights.

    That’s because you didn’t see them…

    Premier Icon StefMcDef
    Subscriber

    crikey – Member

    Eeeh, that photo is a fail…

    Baggy cuffs, hood, cut too long at the front and too short at the back, no pockets and she’s wearing knickers.

    Not really cycling clothing at all.

    I had to stop and peer very closely at the lady’s bottom to confirm the knicker-wearing thing. You must have great eyesight.

    ndthornton
    Member

    So you’re saying that a material that requires light to bounce off it is better than hi-viz

    ?
    High viz also requires light to bounce of it

    transmute
    Member

    Seems we have lost the knowledge already!

    [video]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1MFuSMz1zh0[/video]

    Bring back the nanny state! 😉

    tonyd
    Member

    I have some red/blue/etc jerseys but for the most part my riding gear is black or drab colours. There just isn’t that much choice out there unfortunately. When commuting I tend to wear a fluoro gilet and some of those fluoro/reflective reversible ankle strap things, and lots of lights on the bike/me when it starts getting dark (ie now).

    Premier Icon binners
    Subscriber

    Basically it comes down to the trade off between some perception of personal safety, and not wanting to look like a bell end

    29erKeith
    Member

    imo colour of the clothes is nonsense, lights make a difference and some reflective bits in twilight but in the dark or daylight it’ll make sod all difference imho

    Fairly thick fog here this morning I couldn’t believe the number of cars driving about with no light on at all! madness in my mind

    That’s because you didn’t see them…

    I know were supposed to be arguing the toss, gradually taking a more opposed viewpoint and generally getting angrier as the thread goes on but that was funny. Nice work. 😆

    High viz also requires light to bounce of it

    If you’re referring to the fact you need light to see it (such as daylight, or other ambient light) then yes – it does.

    Reflective strips do exactly that – reflect. They require a direct light source, such as a headlight, to work. Therefore in most situations (such as daylight) they will not be as visible as hi-viz.

    I know were supposed to be arguing the toss, gradually taking a more opposed viewpoint and generally getting angrier as the thread goes on but that was funny. Nice work.

    Thank you. 😉

    grum – Member

    “murdered out” is a good look.

    Murdered out is my favourite colorway.

    I brought some cycling clothes in a murdered out colorway recently.

    😀

    I brought my way out colors to a club ride recently and got asked to swap them out.

    Premier Icon GrahamS
    Subscriber

    Seems we have lost the knowledge already!

    Quality – love the full tinfoil suit the kid is wearing. Very practical.

    Not a helmet in sight though… 😛

    Premier Icon cookeaa
    Subscriber

    Having a decent set of lights is most likely get you seen in low light conditions IMO, supplementing that with some brightly coloured and/or retro reflective clothing is perfectly harmless so do it if you want (I do) but if black / dark colours are your preferred aesthetic then fair enough, os long as you have some lights on then I suppose the drivers excuses for mowing you down are pretty much null and void.

    TBF no matter what you wear you’ll be viewed as a weirdo these days, your on a bike.

    user-removed
    Member

    Whats the point of lights in bright sunshine?

    I came close to hitting a guy on a bike, in a 50 zone the other day. Very, very contrasty light, lots of areas of shadow and blinding light, twisty road – the kind of conditions which have more than once made me pack in a ride and go home.

    I was driving according to the conditions but at the end of the day, you’ve got to make progress.

    Saw the guy in a deep pool of shadow, at the very last moment and stamped on the brakes. Waited a moment until it was safe to overtake. If I’d been doing the recommended 50mph, I would have been lucky not to hit him. If he’d had a flashing rear light, I’d have seen him earlier.

    I understand this ^^^ is dangerous talk round these parts and it’s the responsibility of the driver to be very aware of vulnerable road users, but if there’s anything I can do to make myself safer on a bike, I’ll do it. And that does include assessing light conditions and going home where necessary.

    EDIT – no clue what he was wearing…

    Premier Icon amedias
    Subscriber

    The key to visibility is not colour or brightness but contrast, on a gloomy day in a city that may well be bright colours, but in other conditions it may not be.

    You will actually get better visibility by having areas of different colour/brightness next to each other, ie: bright bike, dark rider or dark top, bright helmet and shorts that way you have more chance of people being able to pick you out against a variety of backgrounds.

    All said and done though being in dark clothing does not make you invisible as long as you are sufficiently illuminated

    lilchris
    Member

    EDIT – no clue what he was wearing…

    Brown trousers?

    IanW
    Member

    I would rather not cycle(and I have most days since I was three) than join the wonking helmet, high viz gang.

    Insisting people dress up in silly clothes is one of the key reasons people dont start cycling in the first place.

    Doesnt matter a jot what colour your wearing when the driver of a car is updating their facebook status.

    timc
    Member

    ton – Member
    timc……please explain how it differs?

    Come on, no point going round the houses, we all know these countries cater for cyclists better than the Uk.

    Premier Icon MoreCashThanDash
    Subscriber

    Op – see my ninja roadies thread a few months ago, the row went on for days……

    mrmo
    Member

    and why so many silver cars that disapear into fog banks….

    Premier Icon ransos
    Subscriber

    Cycling in the Uk is not like cycling in Holland or Denmark though is it?

    You’re right: we’re intent on making cycling in the UK be seen as a dangerous activity.

    Premier Icon muddydwarf
    Subscriber

    I recently bought a set of exposure flash/flare lights for this very reason. Whilst i have kit that is colourful, i also have kit that is dark. The lights i use as daylight running lights because they are rechargeable and run for 8hrs which is easily enough for a day ride.
    Lights, plus a bright fluoro helmet should have me seen regardless of whatever else I’m wearing.
    As above, doesn’t matter what colour you are if the driver doesn’t care enough to actually look where they are going.

    Premier Icon tenfoot
    Subscriber

    Very rarely wear black on the road. At junctions I think people are looking further up the road for fast moving vehicles, and aren’t necessarily concentrating on the foreground. I generally wear red in the hope that the brighter colour will catch the driver’s eye, specifically at junctions.

    Premier Icon benji
    Subscriber

    I’m not a fan of black, with modern fabrics getting bright colours clean again is not a problem. This is me, easily spottable.

    Premier Icon MoreCashThanDash
    Subscriber

    I’m with muddydwarf – use Flash/Flares as daylight lights and have a hi viz helmet, doesn’t matter what colour my kit is then

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