Friday, January 25, 2013

It Didn't

Yes, I rode to work today.

And, it didn't rain, snow, or sleet. Although I'd planned for the possibility of some drizzle or rain, I must admit I expected it to play out the way it did. I suspected the forecasters at the National Weather Service were going to be very cautious after the earlier in the week "Oops".

This is the view out the window of the office I work in at the Civil Courthouse,
The only accumulations today were of the melting agent the good folks from building and grounds put down on the sidewalks and steps. It seems they were rather enthusiastic in their application.There were piles of the stuff all over.

I think I need to clear something up. I'm very careful when it comes to ice and snow. I don't believe two wheels and ice go together at all. I know there are some who put studs in their tires and ride year around in places I'd want at least three wheels on the ground. That's not something that interests me. But, with the new chemicals and the strategy employed in recent years of getting ahead of the snow, there are safe riding days now that would have been stay at home days in the past. 

The downside is, all these chemicals are difficult on machinery and in particular scooters and motorcycles. I've coated Billie with Boeshield T-9 to try and protect her. My friend Maggie didn't ride today because of all the caustic stuff on the road. She won't subject her scooter to this abuse. Me? I have made other choices, but I understand hers.

To sum things up: Today began gray, but ended up sunny and warm. It was a great day to ride.

Have a wonderful weekend!
  • 28F/-2C and gray for the ride to work.
  • 41F/5C and a little cloudy for the home ride.


  1. I can relate to Maggie's concern; it's the salt that stops and starts my riding season. My machines are never all that clean but the corrosion that sets in with the many de-icing applications that are used up here are just more than I can bear.

    In the past, the salt was mixed in with sand and I presume that some of our roads are still treated that way. Locally they are using a liquid mix, applied from the back of a pickup rather than in a big dump truck. The 'tracks' are very evident, probably 8" spacing from their spray nozzles.

    1. They are using the liquid mix here. Those were the tracks I was looking for last night.

      I, too, can relate to both your and Maggie's concerns. I have them also. To me there is a challenge in seeing if I can beat the corrosion. In the past I've used ACF-50 and it has done the trick. Chris over at Everyday Riding likes Bioshield. I'm trying it this year. It has been interesting to have my mechanic both complain about how dirty my bike is in the winter, because it seems all this stuff to prevent rust is a dirt magnet; and be really impressed at how good my bike looks. This is the Symba's third Winter, altho last Winter and so far this Winter has been much.

      Thanks for stopping by and Spring is on the way.

  2. If I had a scooter than did not "cover" all my parts like Billie I could probably justify riding in the salt. But I could never get all my parts clean with the 5 bikes I have. Maybe the DN-01 would be the easiest to clean after each venture out but I just worry about getting in places I can not see.

    The other issue I have is I riding a lot of twisty roads near drop offs the last 4 miles home. I have slide on salt before, it is like gravel. Scared me enough that it is present in my mind.

    I miss it but it is the one thing that keeps me off the scoots.

    As long as you are comfortable that is all that matters.

    1. One of the reason I chose Billie was the way I could get to nearly everything. It has some faring, but is still pretty easy to clean and cover her with anti-corrosive protection. Lots of plastic on other scooters including my Kymco. The Kymco stays at home on these metal eating rust making days.

      Great point about the rock salt. Here in the City they use it less than the liquid stuff. Yes, the rock salt can be like gravel. Another danger time is when they first spray the chemical it can mix with the oil on the street to make those same slick places one encounters when it first begins to rain.

      There are so many things that go into this discussion. For example, my daily commute is very different than yours. I pretty much go straight, stop, and turn. It takes me 40 minutes to go a little over 10mi. on flat well lit streets. There are a few bicyclist who can commute the distance and route I take nearly as quickly as I do. All these things and more go into the decision to ride or not. I don't have the drop-offs or, something you didn't mention, the critters to watch out for.

      Another thing, I really listen to that inner voice most of us have or have developed over the years. It's the voice which tells us if we should ride or not, suggests we should wait a few minutes before we leave, nudges us to leave the bike at home even if it is a beautiful day, or counsels us to call someone to come and get us if we're at work. Confidence is such a big part of riding ones own ride.

      As always thanks for commenting Maggie. I'm confident you know you this, but for the others reading the comments I'll say it publicly: You are a part of every ride I take. I owe you much, friend!

    2. :-) I love how much you love riding. You "get" it. Not many around me do.

  3. I am glad it warmed up for your ride home and seeing the sun on the way is a bonus.

    Everyone has a different comfort zone when it comes to riding in the icy temperatures and what they subject the bike to. Luckily they don't use ice on the roads in Oregon, but they do use magnesium chloride and Brad says is is slippery as all heck on the roads. So far I haven't encountered it though.

    1. Brandy,
      I've never figured out if it is the magnesium chloride that's slippery or if it is the way it mixes with the oil and and liquids on the roadways. It feels like that time when it just begins raining after a dry spell, that time the smart folks stay off the road until the oil washes off.