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Fly6, A Rear Mounted Dashcam and safety light for Cyclists

Every day on my commute in NYC I witness reckless behavior from motorists, pedestrians and yes…we bikers. Cars driving in the bike lane, newspaper delivery trucks running red lights, doors flinging open, pedestrians not paying attention when jaywalking…And that’s just what I can witness from the front. Who knows what’s going on behind me.

Dashcams, (dashboard mounted video cameras) have become super popular in Russia, due to police and insurance corruption. The footage has reveled some bizarre situations to the point where there are entire youtube channels dedicated to compiling the insanity.

Like, you know, hitting a bear on the highway.

See more at: here.

Now you probably won’t run into a large furry animal on the streets of NYC (insert inappropriate joke) but there is definitely a need for documentation, especially when road rage occurs or reckless driving may endanger you or worse, lead to a crash. When crashes occur, often the scenario is the NYPD arrives at the scene and chalks it up as an accident, with little or no investigation. Sometimes survillence footage can be acquired form within the area, but there’s no guarantee and it may be difficult or impossible to get from store owners.

As the new administration works towards #visionzero, cyclists may have to take matters into their own hands.

Two Australian cyclists also saw a need for documentation on their rides. One of them, was even shot at by a sling shot which lead them to create an on board dashcam of their own.

Introducing the Fly6 rear light with and HD Camera.
camera

The owners from Perth, Australia-Andrew Hagen & Kingsley Fiegert were kind enough to send me one of their latest prototypes.

Fly6

Due to our wonderful NON-australian weather and still recovering from a broken nose, I haven’t been able to test this unit out on the road but I definitely like what I see right out of the box.

The camera is super light weight and easy to instal to a removable bracket on the seatpost. It’s simple to operate and the footage is easily downloadable and viewable on my computer.

Here are a list of features.

• HD 720p video recording + audio with looping technology. There’s a built in microphone which will probably come handy in recording expletives from angry drivers. It’s meant to be used in the daytime but in well light areas at night–like most streets of NYC, the footage is still fairly good. It’s got a built in wide angle to maximize the range.

• Nano technology, which means they’ve packed a lot into a small light weight unit. It’s also water proof for wet rides…although I wouldn’t try and submerge it in a pool.

• Highly visible tail-light. It has three modes of operation which are cycled through on a switch. A light always has to be on but you can vary the amount of flashing and intensity of bulbs.

• USB rechargeable lithium battery that can last for 5 hours. It’s easy to charge through a computer or plugged into the wall.

• Weight 105 g – 100 mm long. It feels like a slightly large rear tail light.

• 8 Gb micro SD card, which will fit into an adaptor of a card reader.

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The main idea of this camera is not to be used as a go pro to document your bad ass rail slide or alleycat, but rather to be record your ride with out having to put much thought into it.

Eventually the idea is also to change the culture and let motorists know their being watched and hopefully act more civil.

Fly6 has just launched a kickstarted campaign in order to get funding to complete their product which is very close to full production.

Here is their kickstarted video to learn more about the product:

To help fund this project and get a fly6 of your own, click the link: here.

Magnetic Bike Lights

Bike lights with a magnetic personality. Stick them on and they start blinking… in red and white variety.

Helsinki based industrial designer Emanuele Pizzolorusso has a new product called Lucetta.

Here is a video:

Get yours today: pizzolorusso.com

Now does this mean you need a steel frame?

Get a Used Bike at Getbiked.com

Looking to buy a used bicycle in NYC, that is more personal experience than the anonymousness of Craigslist or EBay?

Check out the new Get Biked.
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You’ll be sent a weekly email with a
thorough list of used rides, carefully screened by a moderator. This definitely helps to weed out some of the inflated pricing or confused postings often seen in personal on-line want ads. Like this one recently seen in craigslist.org/NYC:

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A nice looking road bike, but the only information is a store open 7 days a week and a phone number? We’re just supposed to guess where this store is? No store name? No website? Nothing to research?

Not to mention the DIY bike sellers who seem to have an unlimited supply of fresh stock, available on random street corners.

Get Biked seems like a good place to sell a used bicycle for the exact same reasons. They make it easy and offer a simple formatted listing, which helps on what specifics to list.

Cars and Comedians Meet Bikes and Sweets

There is side of me that always feels being an avid cyclist is being the underdog. Maybe it was because I was the awkward short kid who always got picked last for team sports. That made me lose interest in the game, but when I soloed out on a long bike ride, I felt very competitive and actually really came to love sports. This is why I’m always looking for a bike alternative to, well just about anything. I start thinking…”hey, if you can have a car pool…why shouldn’t we (the cyclists) have a bike train.” or “hey, if you pay a lower fee for transporting large amounts of luggage, why do you have to pay a higher set fee if the flight staff finds out your checking in a bicycle?” It’s should be about equality…or maybe the cyclist should get a little better advantage for not polluting the planet…that’s a whole other story though.

Take for example in our media-the big dogs, like Jerry Seinfeld who has his own web only show about driving in CARS With Comedians Getting Coffee (a pretty good idea for a web series)
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But, the underdogs should have a show about biking around with your buddies getting sweet things to eat.

Enter Steve Issacs from Los Angeles.
He is the host and creator of: sweetrideusa.com, a web based tv show that explores the vast region of LA on bikes looking for amazing dessert spots.

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How awesome is that!

Here’s a little of Sweet Ride’s vision:

“My name is Steve, and I believe in the bicycle. I live in Los Angeles, definitely not the most cycle-friendly city, but riding here has totally changed my perceptions of not just this city, but of how great life can be when you’re not boxed up in a car all the time. The bike also lead me into a vibrant culture of people and ideas that I’d like to share with you as well.”

Steve is a great choice for a host, very informative, a straight talker and not pretentious. The format is great too…Guests are introduced in the beginning who are a great representation of the local bike community. Steve maps out the route and describes the sweets about to be consumed. Then a resident dessert expert (Erika) explains more about the food and how much calories the group will be devouring and burning off.

The latest episode, number 3 in the series, has our old pal Nona Varnado as a guest who has been super busy in LA creating get social networks like: labiketrains.com.

Check out the show:

Friday Night Videos…from Russia with…Bike Videos.

Here’s a late addition of Video Friday.

I know you’ll all watching the Sochi Olympics waiting for something like this to happen:
YouTube:

There’s nothing like watching an opening ceremony of an Olympic event and see a host countries history depicted through Cirque du Soleil looking performers in unitards.

Perhaps we will feel the unity and the world coming together with Russian Police hoping to “Get Lucky.

I dunno, seems a little flamboyant to me…especially with Russia so particular about sexual preference.
We did get introduced to this year’s Olympic mascots:
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(left to right) Fabulous Bunny, Stray(f) the Dog and Pussy Cat Tiger Riot.

In case you’ve missed the action here is a 2 hour special of pre-event coverage by Russian TV.

I know, poor Russia is getting picked on, but I really like the take on Gawker’s sports site Deadspin:

The Haters Guide to the Sochi Games.

If your not interested in obscure winter sports festival hosted by a corrupt country with an abysmal record on human rights…then let’s watch bike videos.

Here is some better sports competition: American Style!!
(seen on: Urban Cyclist Worldwide.

Ok, the bike videos:
Title: State Bicycle Shockwave Video
Seen on: Urban Velo.
Description: Fixed gear freestyle isn’t as visible as it was just a few years back, but there are still plenty of riders out there getting rad. State Bicycle has long had one of the more affordable FGFS complete bikes out there, with this being the latest incarnation, the $579 Shockwave. We reviewed the similar Massacre from State back in May 2012.

Title:CX Hairs: #SVENNESS 2.17
Seen on: Prolly
Description: This is it, the final race of the year for #SVENNESS. This one takes place in Hoogerheide, Netherlands for the 2014 UCI Cyclocross World Championship. Surely by now you’ve seen how brutal this course was, so sit back and enjoy!
Excellent job this year, CX Hairs!

Title:
Joe The Ripper Fixed Gear Freestyle Edit

Seen on: Urban Cyclist Worldwide.
Description: Fixed Gear Freestyle Rider Joseph Montano
Aka Joe The Ripper
Two Strap Krew NYC
Song-Ten Cent Pistol- The Black Keys
-Filmer
Shayquan Greenidge
Joey M Rojas
-Edited
Shayquan Greenidge

Title: Luke Binder #leadthepack
Seen on: TRACKO

Title: A Day in the Life-Budapest
Seen on: TRACKO

Title: A Day in the Life-Overdrive London
Seen on: TRACKO

Continue reading Friday Night Videos…from Russia with…Bike Videos.

Velo Love, Gifts for Velotines Day

That’s right, I said #velotinesday. Start the hashtags now and get your sweetheart biker something nice for this lovely Hallmark holiday.

Velojoy.com, has some cute ideas and put them into a gift guide.
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Maybe a complete bicycle is too much. How about some real love, a rim job. Get your mind outta the gutter, I’m talking a about coat hangers, made from bicycle rims.

I saw this over at Urban Velo.

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Velocity Rims, makers of the classic Deep V’s are now taking their rims that don’t pass quality control and selling them as coat hangers, for $8.00. Now that’s not recycling, it’s up-cycling!!

Here is more from about this product: urbanvelo.org/velocity-rims-clothes-hangers.

And a little taste of Velocity’s operation:

Urbanvelo is a great place to learn about slick bike products such as:

Shimano Gets in the Camera Game: Shimano Sport Camera

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Lightweight, mountable cameras have become a cyclist’s best friend these days. A brand synonymous with bikes themselves, it’s no wonder that Shimano is getting in on the camera game. At 86 grams, Shimano’s Sport Camera weighs less than many bike lights–which is good, since it uses an adhesive mount. Waterproof up to 10 meters and sealed to keep out dust and mud, the camera can record for up to two hours in 1080 HD and offers a standard 135-degree and super wide 180-degree mode. WiFi capable, the Sport Camera settings can be controlled through a smartphone, which can also be used to view footage immediately. What that really means is that all your bike exploits caught on camera can be uploaded and shared before you even get home. Available in May for $299; watch footage from the Sport Camera now at www.shimano-sportcamera.com.

Source: urbanvelo.org/shimano-gets-in-the-camera-game-shimano-sport-camera

Now if your looking for laughs…here’s a great gift. Remember how the knights got around in Monty Python’s the Holy Grail? Bang a couple of C
coconuts to make a horse sound effect?

Now available for your iron steed.

Check out: Trotify.com k

Slush, Studies and Summits.

One thing cyclists love to do is ride their bicycles…well maybe not in the #slushopoclypse that plagued the streets of NYC over the last couple of days.
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20140205-194726.jpg(Photo by: @ClosestBikeNY )

Even die hard mechanic Hal Ruzal from Bicycle Habitat known for commuting shirtless, (not in this weather) opted for the subway.
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He did however find a sweet bike for the ride home, incase you were worried. 20140205-193743.jpg(photo by: @khp_art )

Bike blogger, Liz Patek at: bikepeacenyc.wordpress.com wrote about getting around in what she called: “Slush-Apaloza.”

Getting from A to B this morning was a hot slushy mess this morning no matter which mode of transportation you chose.

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Read more: here.
Continue reading Slush, Studies and Summits.

the Youth, the Youth…the Youth are on Fire! 2014 Youth Bike Summit-NYC

Once again, Recycle-A-Bicycle is bringing together young people from NYC and around the country to inspire the next bicycle leaders of tomorrow. It’s the 2014 Youth Bike Summit –Next week, February 14th-16th at the New School-55 West 13th St. NYC.

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Mission of the summit:

Youth Bike is an organization that embraces the values of the Youth Bike Summit and fosters our work on a national scale. The structure of this new model more accurately reflects the complexity of our growing movement, its outcomes, and its potential. Youth Bike is a key element in helping to transform the future of national bike advocacy as it takes the necessary steps toward becoming a more accessible, inclusive movement.

Their will be everything from hands on activities, craft making and interactive lecture series on subjects such as LED construction, Bike Zines and strategizing about youth inspired bicycling revolution! (ok, maybe I got carried away.)

Just for a little inspiration, Steve Vance from Chicago Streetsblog has an interview with the Girls Bike Club, an after school program in the Chicago area of young woman cyclists. They’ll be heading to NYC for the YBS and he caught up with them to get their thoughts.

Girls Bike Club Gets Ready For the Spotlight at Youth Bike Summit
by Steve Vance
February 3rd, 2014
Screen Shot 2014-02-04 at 12.47.58 AM

Girls Bike Club, a youth group and after school program at West Town Bikes in Humboldt Park, is gearing up for an expanded role at the Youth Bike Summit in New York City on February 14.

Girls Bike Club has about six core members and meets every Wednesday to organize upcoming bike rides or garden days, hang out, and, for months preceding the summit, plan their involvement.

Having seen the successful Heels on Wheels Fashion Show at the Logan Share last month, I met with Girls Bike Club and one of the volunteer adult facilitators, Sara Laurino, at West Town Bikes to learn more about what they’re up to.

Ulana Coutts, who will be going to the Youth Bike Summit for the first time this year, said the group “focuses on getting girls on bikes, to make it easier for women and girls to be part of the bike community, and to do bike maintenance ourselves.” Marissa Macias added that it’s a “female youth council, to figure out our role as young females.”

Read the whole story and see a video: here.

20 is Plenty as Cyclist is Critically Injured Near Street Safety Demonstration

(photos by Liz Patek)

City Council member Brad Lander (39th Council District) joined many street safety activists today in Grand Army Plaza to say: “Visionzero starts today.” Holding up signs that said, “20 is Plenty,” participants are asking for legislation that would require a speed limit of 20 miles an hour to be enforced city wide.

Here is coverage from the Epoch Times on today’s action.

Brooklyn Pushes for 20 mph Speed Limit Citywide
By Catherine Yang
February 2, 2014
20130202-NewYorkCitySpeedlimits-CatherineYang-676x450Community members hold signs, reading “20 is Plenty,” in support of New York state legislation to lower New York City speed limits to 20 mph, in Prospect Park, Brooklyn, New York, Feb. 2, 2014. (Catherine Yang/Epoch Times)

NEW YORK—Nearly a hundred Brooklyn residents showed up at Prospect Park on a day’s notice to show support for a state bill that would allow New York City to reduce the speed limit throughout the city.

The city’s speed limit is currently 30 mph by state law. Assemblyman Daniel O’Donnell introduced a bill last month to lower it to 20 mph “except where a different speed is determined appropriate and is indicated by an official sign,” he said. The bill is in review in both the state Senate and Assembly.

Community members held “20 is Plenty” signs, joined by Council member Brad Lander. Other people and cyclists passing by joined in a well.

A nearby resident, Kate Steinberg, said the outpour of support was symbolic of the Brooklyn community being at the forefront of pushing for traffic safety.

Read the story: here.

Sadly the HITS, just keep on coming…just blocks of today’s action.

Today (2/2/14) Gothamist reports:

Cyclist Struck By Car Near Prospect Park2214cyclist (Photo by- Garrick Landsberg )

A cyclist is in serious condition after being struck by a car early this morning near Prospect Park. An FDNY spokesman said that the incident occurred around 6:14 a.m. on Washington Avenue near the intersection of Classon Avenue. The victim was treated for cardiac arrest at the scene and was taken to Kings County Hospital in critical condition. An NYPD spokesman confirmed the incident, but said that no other details were available.
[UPDATE / 4:45 p.m.] An NYPD spokesman said that the victim is a 22-year-old male. The spokesman said that investigators believe that the cyclist and the car were approaching one another in separate lanes when the cyclist moved into the car’s path. No summonses have been issued, and the investigation is ongoing.

Source: Gothamist.com

2/2/14 Demonstration to Demand Homerule for NYC Speed Limits.

Since Brooklyn has now been rated as the second most expensive city to live in…perhaps we can work on it not being the deadliest place to cross a street or ride a bicycle.

Motor vehicles are out of control, smashing into Hardware stores in Staten Island:
staten-island-woman-crashes-through-reimans (from the Staten Island Advance )

You’re not even safe waiting for the bus. Tonight (2/1/14) four people including one child were injured in Woodside Queens, by a driver who fled after plowing into a bus stop. Read more here.

Safe streets activists are trying to work towards #visionzero by demanding a homerule on a 20 mile an hour speed limit.

Sunday, February 2nd will be a demonstration:

COMMUNITY MEMBERS GATHER ON PROSPECT PARK WEST WITH 100 ’20 IS PLENTY’ SIGNS TO DEMAND HOMERULE FOR NYC SPEED LIMITS
When: Sunday, February 2nd at 12 noon
Where: Grand Army Plaza, Brooklyn (Union St & Prospect Park West)
Sign
New York, NY: Two new bills before the New York State Legislature, one in the Assembly and one in the Senate, would give homerule to NYC over its speed limits. On Sunday, community members will gather to demonstrate their support for lower speeds on NYC streets.

“This is a crucial step in Mayor de Blasio’s push toward Vision Zero,” said Keegan Stephan, an organizer with Right of Way.

“A pedestrian’s chances of surviving being hit by a vehicle are doubled if the driver is going 20mph instead of 30,” said Charles Komanoff, statistician with Right of Way and author of their study Killed by Automobile. “We’re talking about saving dozens of lives every year.”

“Drivers going 20 mph have more time to react in the event of the unexpected, reducing the frequency of crashes,” said Hilda Cohen, founder of Make Brooklyn Safer.

“Research shows that children 12 and under are cognitively incapable of accurately perceiving vehicle speeds above 20 mph,” added Stephan. “There is no reason drivers need to be going faster than that on our residential streets, in the nation’s most pedestrian-rich city.”

From: rightofway.org/demoforhomerule