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Bicyclist Alert System.

Biycle tire, paint, no SPLAT.
  (+11, -1)(+11, -1)
(+11, -1)
  [vote for,
against]

Okay first a little background (very little I promise) where I live there are alot of curves on the roads, an lot of bicyclists, zero bike lanes and zero street lights.

My idea: Come up witha commercial grade disappearing paint. (Crafty mothers have a recipe, but as I haven't tried it out, I don't know if it will work for my idea) Make said paint glow-in-the-dark. Put it in an aerosol spray bottle and attach the bottle over the back wheel (or wheels) of a bicycle with a mechanism that continually sprays the paint on to the tire as long at the tire is rotating.

As the paint sprays and the tire rotates the paint is transferred onto the pavement leaving trail that cars can see as they come from behind. And since the paint disappears there won't be false trails long after the bicyclist is gone. And even if there were, maybe people would slow down and it could save a life anyways.

Edited to add: Paint should be Day-Glo so it will show up at all hours.

PollyNo9, Oct 10 2005

[link]






       How sharp are these curves and how fast are you going? And how do you not see the person riding the bike in front of you. Unless this person is riding around in a parking garage where they have those crazy spiral ramps.
Antegrity, Oct 10 2005
  

       Curves are pretty sharp. And the speed limit is fairly high (50 most of time recommended 35 round the curves) I have come up on many bicyclists and had to slow down real fast. Also it's an island and one side of the (2 lane) road is a steep hill and the other side is a cliff so not a whole lotta room to manuever.
PollyNo9, Oct 10 2005
  

       Lots of byciclists and its an island, Im going to say you live in Hawaii
Antegrity, Oct 10 2005
  

       There are cost and environmental issues here, but I must say it is a neat idea and a nice image. [+]
wagster, Oct 10 2005
  

       Couldn't you just slow down a bit?
soup-mug, Oct 10 2005
  

       I don't think a cyclist should need to trail paint because you're not driving safely [Polly]. I agree with [wags] that it is a nice solution but the problem should not exist - if you're cornering too fast to stop within your line of sight then you're cornering too fast.
DocBrown, Oct 10 2005
  

       [Doc] You're right, people shouldn't drive too fast for their line of sight, and [Soup] you're right too. But not everyone drives the speed limit , and unless somene comes up with a good, implementable plan, some people never will. This would put the safety of the cyclists more in the control of the cyclist, much in the same way as reflectors, bells and lights. These things are not just for show or for the use of the cyclist, they are to draw the attention of drivers to the presence of said cyclist. In my own defense I do drive the speed limit, but this isn't so the cyclists can warn the safe drivers of their presence, it's so they can maybe catch the eye of the UNsafe drivers before it's too late.
PollyNo9, Oct 10 2005
  

       Safety devices for cyclists have sold well and saved lives for many years now, despite the fact that people shouldn't be running them over in cars in the first place.
wagster, Oct 10 2005
  

       //Safety devices for cyclists have sold well and saved lives for many years now //   

       Exactly, one more can't hurt, can only help.
PollyNo9, Oct 10 2005
  

       [Polly] I think you're confusing things. It's perfectly possible to drive too fast and yet be travelling at the speed limit. That's why it's referred to as a limit. It's the maximum speed that is safe on a given stretch of road but it may not be safe to travel at this speed throughout every section the limit applies to (blind corners, humpback bridges etc). In these situations you've got to slow down. Conversely, there are some places where speed limits are set stupidly low and I break the limit in these places pretty regularly.

I think the idea's a good one though so here's my [+].
DocBrown, Oct 11 2005
  

       I would be interested to know, Miss No. 9, if you ride a bike, drive a car or both.
wagster, Oct 11 2005
  

       I drive a car. But only when I have to. I hate it, if I have to drive for long periods of time I have panic attacks. Probably why I would like advance warning about things ahead of me. If I could paint all the animals on the island with glow-in-dark, flourescent paint (and not be targeted by PETA) I would try.   

       Also I was thinking of this as I was going to work, and as I went around one curve (not even a particularly sharp one) I noticed that, due to one specific bush, I couldn't see around the bend until I was bout 15 feet from the bush. So it isn't really a matter of speed and curves it's more a matter of visibility.
PollyNo9, Oct 12 2005
  

       Isn't visibility what we've been discussing all along? I thought it was. You're right though - it doesn't matter what's in the way, if it is in the way you need to moderate your speed accordingly.
DocBrown, Oct 12 2005
  

       Spending my fair share of time riding on the street, I like the concept of extending the visibility of the bicycle. It gives drivers more time to react.   

       I have a comical mental image of a robotic, tall pylon type device that follows behind the bicycle some distance.
half, Oct 12 2005
  

       Anything to add to the visibility, and therefore, safety of people. Thanks for the plusses.
PollyNo9, Oct 12 2005
  

       This is turning into a speed limit argument. I believe most speed limits were set by people driving 30ft RV's. If there is a sharp turn or a blind spot, then the speed limit should be reduced. As it is in most cases.   

       Weight is a huge issue for bikers and I dont really see anyone voluntarely straping on a 10 gallon can of flourescent paint to the back of their bike.   

       Put a reflector on your bike, thats all you have to do. This sytem would require to much time and money to keep safely operating.
Antegrity, Oct 13 2005
  

       [Antegrity] Actually no one said anything about gallons of paint, what I said was a aerosol can of paint that sprays onto the tire, because you are right no one would do that.   

       In retrospect probably the whole thing should be able to be turned on and off so that you aren't trailing paint on a straightaway.
PollyNo9, Oct 13 2005
  

       Heh, perhaps you could use two open-spigoted pails of paint fixed to your bike chassis, one on the right and one on the left near your rear axle. It might help to visualize the paint cans as designed like the gravy separator in your kitchen drawer. This way the pails will only dispense paint when you are turning through a curve or cornering.
jurist, Oct 13 2005
  

       okay [Jurist] let me do you one better: the on/off mecahnism on each side is controlled by electricity. THese go on and off in the same way a pipe bomb in detonated ( I don't know the specific but here goes) on either side of a small opening are two ends of an elctrode, separated by a gap. In the opening in mercury, whenever the apparatus is turnedthe mercury connects the two electrodes, completing the circuit.   

       [fqhwgads] I had no idea that a large aerosol only covered that small a space. Darn. Cause 1/2 mile of paint, even with an on/off switch won't do much. Hm. Thanks!
PollyNo9, Oct 15 2005
  

       Considering that road bikers go for rides that are a lot longer than 4 miles, I think weight is an issue. This idea only makes sense for night rides, so you would have to have a constant spray. What more can I say, the cops beat the guy and they should therefore be fired, thats the end of the conversation.
Antegrity, Oct 15 2005
  

       I thought of this too. It must be a good idea then.
theNakedApiarist, Mar 06 2008
  

       Yeah, but not paint - it should be something flammable.
phoenix, Mar 06 2008
  

       Just use Predator blood.
Giblet, Mar 08 2008
  

       Yes, tie a predator to the back of the bike, and stick a little razor onto one of the gears. He'll dribble out every ten feet or so...
ye_river_xiv, Mar 08 2008
  
      
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