How to signal you're done with a pull?

Discussion in 'The Roadie Hangout' started by fongster, Aug 4, 2014.

  1. fongster

    fongster Active Member

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    When I rode with a team back in the 90s, no one needed to signal in any manner other than look over one's right shoulder before pulling off to the right and drifting back. Nowadays, I'm really unclear as to what to do. When riding with guys who I just meet along a ride and we agree to work together, I do what I mentioned above but everyone just stays on my wheel. I don't think they're trying to avoid doing any work (well, I bet some are, lol). What are the universal, no question about it techniques to show you're done doing your part--hand signals, audibles, etc.?
     
  2. herzalot

    herzalot Well-Known Member

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    I don't ride road, but perhaps a white flag?
     
  3. doublewide

    doublewide Ride Life....Ride GIANT

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    I'd throw my arms up in the air and say "I'm done!" then proceed to lay my bike down in a soft bush and take a nap. But then again I only ride park. ;)
     
  4. Aviatrix

    Aviatrix Active Member

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    :lol:
    Thanks for the laugh guys
     
  5. bing!

    bing! Active Member

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    if they dont get the message, offer them a finger to pull. when they do, theyll realize that all you have left are blanks. thats unless you had a few bean burritos before the ride. in which case, you have enabled the magic cheat code for unlimited capabilties.
     
  6. kioti

    kioti Active Member

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    Take a look on the side you're pulling off to make sure it's clear, look between your legs to make sure no one is overlapping your wheel, wag your elbow a couple times and move over. It generally makes the most sense for the rider coming off the front to go to the windy side of the paceline so you're offering a bit of shelter to the group as you drop back, especially if you're echeloning because of the wind.
     
  7. bikerider

    bikerider New Member

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    Yes the elbow. Just a chicken wing to the side and then move over. if they are not paying attention to your subtle hints, just remind them of the rules. After all you are riding road and it's ok to call someone out for being a douche...
     
  8. MnMDan

    MnMDan Member

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    Elbow flick...if its a big enough group of 6-7, then your pull will usually last just as long as it takes to clear the overlap of the rider who pulled just ahead of you. Unless you know everyone in the group, you're pull shouldn't last more than 20 seconds. Even then, when you drop back and the next rider is clear of you, call it out. A group of 3-4 might mean 30-40 second pulls. Time between pulls should never be less than 90-seconds.

    And unless you are on a closed road, always drop back on the right side of the group, never the left. Dropping back on the left will get you screamed at for being unsafe, and you will get immediately dropped. Always, always drop on the right, pass on the left....

    As for the "wind" argument, if you are on a closed road, the person dropping back is sheltered from the crosswind to allow for quicker recovery when they latch onto the back. A single or two riders dropping back fully in the wind causes them to use more energy to latch onto the back than they did when they were at the front...not ideal for maintaining the group.

    A 5-7 person strong paceline full of strangers doing it right doesn't need to go full gas and is a beautiful thing to be a part of.
     
  9. rjcsocal

    rjcsocal Member

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    Although the proper paceline rules are helpful, I think your question was how to signal b/c people aren't getting it. The answer is -- most won't. Not many people have been taught how to ride a paceline by Robert Kahler. These guys are wheel suckers and the only thing they care about is a free ride.

    I used to do my early Sunday morning recovery rides on PCH from Newport Coast/Laguna up to 2nd St in Belmont Shore/Long Beach and would have guys on my wheel most of the time -- I did the same thing as you and everyone has described and they wouldn't get it. The best thing to do is drop them on a quick hill or sprint, the guys that hang with you will be more approachable to discuss the mechanics of a paceline.
     
  10. Bullseye

    Bullseye New Member

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    Others have answered well. Just a couple of observations... telegraph your moves and make it obvious what you're doing.
    One quick, but clear wag of your elbow to make your intentions known. I usually move slightly to the right to give a clear view of my elbow to the rider behind, then flick my left elbow... followed by a more obvious move to the right and then immediately let off the gas and start to drift. The person behind you will look like a fool if they move the whole group with you and then start slowing too. Sometimes people confuse those behind by not moving over enough nor slowing enough when they pull off. Don't be dangerously abrupt... but don't be vague either.

    As noted above, if everyone is taking 30 second pulls, then so should you... they'll be expecting you to pull off at about that interval. If everyone in the group is pulling at 22mph, then so should you. Honor the rhythm of the group. Don't pull longer or harder than others unless your help is genuinely needed. If others are not pulling-thru, it may be because you are pulling too hard or not slowing enough for them to care to come through. Taking a pull is not hero time.
     
  11. stevemacko

    stevemacko Member

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    I think I'll stick to riding alone... Then I'm only riding with one jerk.
     
  12. kioti

    kioti Active Member

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    That's so interesting to me! I come from the Eddie B.--Greg Lemond days, and their advice was to ride away from the wind when on a wheel, and fall off on the windy side to continue sheltering the pace line as you drift to the back. So I guess I'd get yelled at for being dangerous, tho it's not like any of us pulled off into a traffic lane, or at least without looking..

    We'd draft on the leeward side and the lead rider would just drift back in the wind, staying in line but parallel to the riders in front. If there was a bike lane, we'd fan out across it, or use half a bike path, whatever. Maybe we're talking about different things here, like a sociable training ride in a double pace line as opposed to a really efficient small group. Not sure, but thanks for the head's up!
     
  13. herzalot

    herzalot Well-Known Member

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    We need a suitable and thorough diagram from Varaxis here. Please include crosswind left, headwind and crosswind right and consider whether on a straightaway, a left curve or a right curve. Please include variables for different widths of shoulders (of road, not rider) and whether or not parked cars are present. Keep it simple.

    :?: :wave:
     
  14. fongster

    fongster Active Member

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    Hahahaha! Robert's group is who I rode with in the late 80s and early 90s. That was a safe group for sure.
     
  15. fongster

    fongster Active Member

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    So on the elbow flick--for example, I flick my left elbow as if to say, "go around my left, I'm pulling off" and I then drop off on the right? I've sometimes dropped my left hand motioned for them to come up and around and then dropped off the right. Is this right?
     
  16. bvader

    bvader Long Live The Gorn!

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    I just figure when I am out on the road solo... either I am solo, pulling or being pulled (duh)... but what I mean is I am out there for myself...if others don't want to pull and I get tired we all slow down. I don;t mind pulling for as long as needed because I am trying to get maximum exercise, I don't really care if they pull, actually I am more concerned about safety and poor riding technique... I don't trust a lot of folks.. It is cool when you hook up with a couple folks that have some skill and power want to rotate...but most the time I just ride for myself. When I am tired and get a pull I make sure to be safe and thank the person.

    Ohh and as to the original question... snot left...fade right :)

    BTW I road with Robert/Santiago early 2000's about 5-7 years...
     
  17. MnMDan

    MnMDan Member

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    Kioti made me stop for a minute and think...I guess I was speaking more in terms of how most people would ride in a paceline with strangers. I guess I was speaking more in terms of paceline safety so that the group isn't disrupted/taken down by the unexpected.

    And Kioti's right about the crosswind drop, although most of my experience has been to shelter the dropping riders as most tend to take too long of a pull to be truly efficient and be able to balance the pull/recovery effort.

    With most of my miles on the road (but most of my time on the trails), I get to experience the full range of cycling behavior.
     
  18. kioti

    kioti Active Member

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    Thanks Dan, I'd ride with you anytime.

    And bvader makes a good point. A solid rider in the front position has the unspoken responsibility of protecting the trailing riders by paying 100% attention, calling and pointing out hazards, making good decisions as to line and speed, deciding whether or not to roll a yellow, and about a thousand other things. Many of us know and accept this, but a casual pickup group on the road may include riders who are either too self-absorbed, inexperienced or ignorant to understand that they're the rest of the group's eyes and ears.

    Riding hard with a regular group of trusted friends is a beautiful thing. And enjoying the synergy of a makeshift group is fun, but expecting strangers to pay the same sort of attention to your safety as your friends do is ill advised. Enjoy the draft but don't overlap; leave some space, expect the unexpected and look ahead like you're first in line.
     
  19. Bullseye

    Bullseye New Member

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    Pacelining (if done right) is a much better workout than just riding solo. When you ride solo, you are limiting your effort to a pace that you alone can maintain for the duration of your ride. When you ride with a good group, you are pushing your limits on the effort side with a much higher pace than you could maintain solo, recovering as you move back, and then going again. You're basically doing intervals and forcing your body to recover on the fly.

    Paceling is inherently a group riding technique for a collection of riders working together for a common goal. The nuances of a proper group paceline are often lost on many... but here's the real beauty: You can have a club/group of riders of mixed abilities leave point A and arrive at point B at the same time with everyone getting a proper workout. During the course of the ride, stronger riders may take longer pulls and weaker riders may take shorter pulls or just sit-on letting the stronger riders rotate in front of them.
     
  20. tortoise

    tortoise Member

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    I thought this was fairly obvious to the puller.....oh nevermind wrong kind of pull.
     

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