Excellent news – TFL has announced an 18 month trial of allowing motorcyclists to use many bus lanes on London’s main roads.
From 5 January 2009, an 18-month trial will allow motorcycles, mopeds, scooters and tricycles – but not those with sidecars – to travel in most red route bus lanes.
Drivers of these vehicles will be able to use red route bus lanes currently used by cyclists and taxi drivers during operational hours.
I think this is a sensible move by TFL, and look forward to slightly easier journeys!
Okay, yesterday I posted whinging about how cold it is. Today was even worse – not only did I have to use a lighter to heat the disclock to defrost it before being able to remove it, I got to a petrol station and couldn’t open the fuel tank because the lock on the cap had frozen too!
Thankfully the staff at the Sainsburys petrol station in Stevenage (Poplars) were very helpful and came out with a can of their own de-icer to help me out, which was appreciated.
I’m hating the coldness when I ride to + from work at the moment – it’s just too damn cold!
Back on the bike today after a few days of non-riding (weekend, and Monday + Tuesday off work) – the riding was mostly fun, but uncomfortably cold, even with thermal longjohns, jeans, textile bike trousers, two tshirts, two jumpers, textile jacket, WindSkin, neck tube, winter gloves (and boots of course). Bring on summer (or at least our poor excuse for a summer) already!
On the way home, the big matrix signs by the roadside were proclaiming “A1 closed – accident at Stirling Corner – use other route”. I figured it’d probably be wrong, so stayed on the A1 – sure enough it wasn’t closed (unless they’d just re-opened it) but was very heavy, mostly stationary traffic, so good filtering practice :)
When I got almost home, I noticed some muppet with no lights on – yes, no lights at all in the dark. I tried to draw their attention to it several times, as did others. They were behind me, so I pulled over and let them pass so I could get their registration, and reported them to the police for dangerous driving. The police took the details, and promised to send a report out to nearby units in case they’re spotted, and also to pass it on to the “dangerous driving unit” (if there’s such a thing). I doubt that much will come of it, but I hope it’ll at least be held on record, and will be seen if the police ever look up that registration for anything else.
Another day of freezing cold riding tomorrow, then I’ll probably take the train on Friday so I can have a couple of beers after work – what with it being Friday, and more importantly, the last working day of the year :)
Okay, this dude has serious skills… that’s some amazing bike control!
Finally, I have my bike back! A few weeks back it started to struggle on the way home on the motorway, running like a pig, and emitting worrying amounts of smoke from the back of the engine (from the crankcase breather it turns out).
To use a technical description, the engine was shagged, so it now has a new engine in (one that’s done 7,000 miles, courtesy of a very helpful eBay seller).
I went out for a lovely ride today, covering about 45 miles and loving every one of them. I took some pictures with my camera phone… here’s one of the nice country lanes I enjoyed riding on:
A clip from the beginning of Taxi (a rather good French film by Luc Besson):
This biker makes an amazing save from a highside, being mostly thrown off the bike but managing to get back on! He’ll be glad he was wearing proper leathers and boots.
OK, I took these pictures with my camera phone when I went out for a ride last weekend with the intention of sticking them on here straight after, but I didn’t get round to it.
Now that we’re starting to get some slightly sunnier weather, I decided it had been way too long since I last went out for a ride just for fun, so I went out. Unfortunately my GPZ500S is still sitting in the garage with its new engine fitted, just waiting for a breather pipe to arrive and be fitted, so in the meantime I had to take out my little 125 instead.
Two websites I’ve used a couple of times to send parts requests to motorcycle breakers:
Well worth a try if you need to find a certain part and want to see if any breakers have them available, saves ringing round all the breakers yourself.
If you know of any other good ones, feel free to post them in the comments!
(There are similar ones out there for cars, too).
I watched Ghost Rider tonight, and I have to say I’m actually quite impressed.
I didn’t know whether it would be any good, and I have to admit it was somewhat far-fetched in places (but then, it’s a fantasy storyline, based on a Marvel comic, so I guess that’s allowed!), but overall it was very good.
Nicolas Cage put in a rather good performance as the Ghost Rider, alongside the rather aesthetically pleasing Eva Mendes. (continue reading…)