Author Topic: Which side of your lane do you ride in  (Read 5803 times)

Offline Jaxter

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Which side of your lane do you ride in
« on: June 07, 2011, 09:00:48 pm »
As I was riding over Stevens Pass last week-end I noticed that sometimes I was on the RH side of my lane and other times I was on the LH side of my lane...so I started to wonder why I was choosing one side or the other. Upon some not so deep pondering, I came up with some possible explainations. Obviously I don't ride in the center because that is where all of the cagers drop their slick fluids. When a big semi truck is approaching I move to the right. When I am the last person in a line of traffic I move to the left so oncoming traffic can see me earlier. Most obvious is looking for objects in the road or rough roads. Do any of you have lane preferences...and why?
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YoDoc

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Re: Which side of your lane do you ride in
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2011, 10:18:35 pm »
I base in the center, and bob and weave as needed.

Son of Pappy

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Re: Which side of your lane do you ride in
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2011, 11:01:23 pm »
See and be seen.  I have no certain spot or preferance.

Offline Two Skies

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Re: Which side of your lane do you ride in
« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2011, 11:46:47 pm »
It depends.  I spend a lot of time in the right side of the lane on the freeway, so that drivers can see me more easily in their left mirror (and hopefully not lane change into me).  I move to the left if I am concerned that the driver in the left lane may not see me, in the hopes that he'll see me in his center/rh mirror.  And in general, I don't stay next to any vehicles for extended periods of time if I can help it.

I'm not a big fan of riding in the center.  Not only does oil, etc. accumulate there, but also if the car in front of you straddles some debris, it will be directly in your riding path, with little time to react.  So I tend to stay in line with the left or right wheels of the vehicle in front of me, with my logic being that whatever their tires hit will go flying, probably to the left or right, with me swerving the opposite way.

When in the far right lane on the freeway, I tend to hang out in the left side of the lane so that 1) the cars in the left lanes can see me more easily and 2)I have more pavement to work with should I have to swerve around something in my lane.

On divided, two way roads, I tend to travel just right of the centerline, so that I have more asphalt to work with when swerving to the left or right.  And moving over to the middle or right side of my lane when passing approaching cars of course.
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YoDoc

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Re: Which side of your lane do you ride in
« Reply #4 on: June 07, 2011, 11:54:06 pm »
Most pavement has plenty of traction on the middle "slick" part of the lane. Granted, even I avoid that right after it starts raining. I base in the middle because then I can swerve left OR right. It gives me maximum room to maneuver, and here in Dallas, it also tends to prevent cagers from "sharing" your lane. I hate these fu***ng drivers. If you don't drive like an as**ole, you WILL get creamed. Case in point, I was riding today, and the four lane surface street I was on was under construction. They had the barrels out and the MERGE LEFT signs and everything. I was keeping pace with traffic, with about 50 feet in front of me to the next car, at about 35-40 mph. Keep in mind that the RIGHT lane is the one going away, and I'm in the LEFT lane already. A car zoomed up behind me, slammed on it's brakes, then went around me to the left... yes, in the lane I was in. I just happened to be riding in the right portion to avoid some poor repairs on the left/center portions of the lane. Riding a bike here is dangerous. I'm surprised more bikers aren't dead every day.

Offline Assassin 11B3P

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Re: Which side of your lane do you ride in
« Reply #5 on: June 08, 2011, 12:02:11 am »
i like going all over the place, mostly randomly, no regard to other cars!
Please use this forum to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data, ability to repeat discredited memes, and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Also, be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor even implied. Any irrelevancies you can mention will also be appreciated.

Offline kathybrj

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Re: Which side of your lane do you ride in
« Reply #6 on: June 08, 2011, 04:54:20 am »
I ride like I was taught in my MSF class long, long ago......LH in the lane. When Blaise is riding with me and in front, I ride RH in the lane. But agree with Pappy- see and be seen.
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Bob

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Re: Which side of your lane do you ride in
« Reply #7 on: June 08, 2011, 06:31:25 am »
 I ride in the left of the lane. IMO, it gives me better visibility to on coming traffic as well as they're seeing me. I feel it also gives me more room to maneuver if someone starts to pull in out in front of you from the right.  Of course this is just my opinion and preference.
 Like Kathy, I ride in the right lane when in groups and that's where the stagger in line allows me to slot in. It's not my preferred place to be. But in groups it is IMO, the safest place to be in the group.
 Then when in back road play time, it could be anywhere in the lane that my line is going to require me to be! At that will be all over the lane!!! 8)

Offline JetJock

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Re: Which side of your lane do you ride in
« Reply #8 on: June 08, 2011, 11:27:32 am »
LH for me most of the time when in traffic. But I move around a LOT as a big believer in being seen. I don't run alongside any car/truck in their blind spots for any longer than I can avoid. One of the joys of the Connie is that the loud handle makes passing verrrryyyy easy and enjoyable! 8)

Offline Jeremy Mitchell

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Re: Which side of your lane do you ride in
« Reply #9 on: June 08, 2011, 11:38:19 am »
Commuting I am almost always in the LH portion of my lane, otherwise I am on whatever side gives me the best chance to hit the apex at my given speed.
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Offline VirginiaJim

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Re: Which side of your lane do you ride in
« Reply #10 on: June 08, 2011, 02:29:55 pm »
I do most of the above and change position depending on the circumstances.
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Offline Pfloydgad

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Re: Which side of your lane do you ride in
« Reply #11 on: June 08, 2011, 04:21:46 pm »
Proximity Location.
5 potential riding positions. I practice my position this way. Left tire line, inside lft. tire line, middle, rt tire line and inside rt tire line. I will juse the outside rt tire line at times, but not very often.
I ride in the left tire line or just to the inside of that tire line. When oncoming traffic has a clear view of me, to avoid potential fixation, I then shift my position to the rt tire line and lock in to that position till the oncoming vehicle passes. I then move to the original ltf tire line and start the process over again.
I have noticed that oncoming vehicles will actually move a little toward their shoulder when they see me moving also, I would guess better then 50% do shift a little.
I have done this for a very long time, only stopped by the man, actually a woman once. But after explaining my tecnique, she put it into her gray matter and thanked me for new knowledge.
I can also recommend this to help you stay ingaged in your ride, placement and surroundings. Any little bit helps, and making sure the oncoming car knows you are rolling toward them, they will hopefully be as cautious as you.
Ride safe all.
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YoDoc

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Re: Which side of your lane do you ride in
« Reply #12 on: June 08, 2011, 04:41:48 pm »
I ride like I was taught in my MSF class long, long ago......LH in the lane. When Blaise is riding with me and in front, I ride RH in the lane. But agree with Pappy- see and be seen.

That's interesting. In my MSF class, I was taught to ride in the center...

Offline Tom J.

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Re: Which side of your lane do you ride in
« Reply #13 on: June 08, 2011, 05:11:14 pm »
I've been riding for about 30 years.  This is a very dynamic question and there are, IMHO, way too many variables to accurately and clearly answer.  I will say that almost everything plays into where I am positioned in my lane.  Traffic conditions, road conditions as well as number of lanes, divided or not, speed, lighting conditions, weather conditions (especially if it's a heavy crosswind), certainly if I'm riding with a group makes a huge difference, etc...
I'm not always in the right spot, but this question makes me think of all the things that play into my almost unconscious decisions of what part of the lane I'm riding in.
NEVER do I stay in the middle of a lane for any length of time. 
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Offline Summit670

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Re: Which side of your lane do you ride in
« Reply #14 on: June 08, 2011, 06:45:57 pm »
Agree, depends upon too many factors.

My goal is to see and be seen, not get sandwiched front/back so watching car behind me in slow-down situations and at least position myself so I can throttle out, possibly.  To stay out of blind spots.  Not get caught in the middle too close behind someone in case they straddle some debris like 2x4, 4x4, bricks, etc.
Always try and be able to see ahead of who is in front and anticipate braking of more than just the car ahead of you.

Anticipate semi's kicking up debris, losing tire tread, creating windshear.
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