1 LACBC 2010 Spanish Resource Guide English text 1 About This Guide LACBC s first Spanish language Bicycle Resource Guide was designed as part of our City of Lights program, to reach out to Latina/o bikers, like yourselves, one of Los Angeles largest group of cyclists. You, who ride to and from work from neighborhoods like MacArthur Park, Boyle Heights, South Los Angeles, Echo Park, and other areas. While there have been a growing number of cyclists in Los Angeles over the last five years, unfortunately, we all know that the streets are still a very dangerous place for us to ride. And very little bicycle safety education outreach has been done for Latina/o immigrant cyclists. Therefore, the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition created this guide, or graphic novel, for you to enjoy and share with family and friends. As Don Chepe, the hero of our novel, will show you, there are certain resources that you, as a cyclist need to know: guidelines on what safety gear you absolutely need; how to maintain your bike and keep it in tip top shape; tips on safer streets to ride from your neighborhood to work, transit, and other destinations, such as learning to ride defensively around cars; your rights as a cyclist, knowledge of bike laws and how to contest incorrect tickets, what to do if you ve been hit by a car; how to access government agencies to get better street improvements for bicycles in your neighborhood and more! It is important for you, as immigrant cyclists, who are the most vulnerable workers and riders in LA, who face dangerous streets and legal dangers to be empowered. With this information, you can be a safer rider and have a voice in bike improvements in your city or neighborhood. Riding a bike should be a fun, safe, healthy, and EASY way for bikers to get around and help our environment without needing a car! What is City of Lights? The City of Lights program was created to increase Latina/o immigrant bicyclists safety and support them to educate and spread bicycle safety information and advocacy to their communities. Often we would see vast amounts of immigrant cyclists, yet realized that they are not acknowledged as some of the most dedicated cyclists, role models environmental activists might follow in the footsteps of. Too few immigrant cyclists are on the big bike rides, are at public outreach meetings on bike issues, or are leaders in the bike movement. We at LACBC established this campaign in January 2009, in response to the need to change that and to build stronger bridges with immigrant Latina/o cyclists. Since then, we have given out bike lights and safety vests Fridays at the CARECEN day laborer center by Wilshire and Union in Pico-Union since April We have done safety, maintenance, and legal rights workshops. We have hosted a Latino themed bike ride, with more to come, and want to help workers be able to fix and teach others how to fix their own bikes at the centers. The ultimate goal is to create a way for immigrant cyclists to be an active part of the bicycle advocacy movement. Special Thanks to REI and the Rampart Village and Pico-Union Neighborhood Councils for their generous grants, which have made this guide possible.
2 Contents (Pg. 1 still) 2 Where to Get a Bike on the Cheap Safety Equipment Page Saddle Height/Position Keeping tires inflated Lights Helmet, picking right size, replace after accidents 1 st part of anti-theft section: U-lock-make chart demonstrating how much money is saved annually, by using that or a thick enough chain lock Safe Riding 2 nd part: Bike parking, where to lock, locking up properly Bike Adjustments Lights Ride with traffic Distance from cars Passing cars, no weaving Wearing bright colors Choosing safe streets Bikes on rail-clarify about past restrictions Calling Metro if they leave their bike on the rack, also keeping eye on bike when it s on the bus Maintenance Replacing tires with major holes, or using dollar bill to shield tube, replacing tubes with lots of patches Lubing chain Warning against using screwdriver or other sharp objects to remove tires when fixing flats, recommend spoon worst case scenario Anatomy of a bike How to fix a flat Toolkit essentials: levers, wrench, spare tube, patch kit Legal Rights CA Vehicle Code: Cyclist rights, alcohol, lights, use of roadway, sidewalk riding, helmets, freeways, DIRECTION of travel, headphones, reflectors, hand signals What to do if hit by a car, Accident lawyer info How to file a report for a stolen bike Advocacy/Community How to connect with Los Angeles City Council, LADOT, Bicycle Advisory Council, Metro, etc. LACBC info: what we ve done for low-income riders before How to join or volunteer for LACBC on back page Bikeboom Bike Ride Calendar Editor Allison Mannos Design Robin Wisser Text Allison Mannos Illustrations Hembert Guardado Translation Jackie Vergara Acknowledgements: Jennifer Klausner, Dorothy Le, the Bicycle Kitchen, the Bicycle Oven, Monica Howe Cover: Hembert Guardado Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition
3 Where to Buy Bikes on the Cheap Getting a new bike? Had one stolen recently? Our listing on Page? has suggestions for low-cost and local places you can either buy a new one or build one up. 3 Used Bikes Save money and buy an old bike from neighborhood garage sales. Or visit the Bicycle Kitchen, Bike Oven, or Bikerowave to choose a donated bike and learn how to fix it up yourself! If you re looking for something a little fancier, you might go online try
4 QuickTime and a decompressor are needed to see this picture. Safety Equipment Every Rider Needs (Hey, it s cheaper than health insurance!) 4 Lights and reflectors: We can t emphasize this more! It is the law to need front and rear lights when riding at night. If you don t have a back light, then you must have a reflector on the wheels, pedals and rear of your bike. Read on as Don Chepe narrowly saves Pepito from the fate of Marco (who was in an accident), since he was intoxicated and didn t know the first thing about safe riding. Patch Kits: Flat tires happen. Instead of being stranded on the side of the road, equip yourself with patch kits so you can get home. They include a piece of sandpaper, 2 tire levers, patches, and glue, or glueless patches. A mini-pump is recommended; otherwise you ll have a flat, but patched intertube and still be stuck. Wrench: If you have a bike whose wheels have axle nuts, instead of quick release handles, carry a wrench. The usual size for these axle nuts is 15mm or an adjustable wrench works, too. Here are pictures of wheels, one with a quick release handle and one with an axle nut: QuickTime and a decompressor are needed to see this picture. Quick Release Handle Axle Nut (Needs Wrench) What you should always carry when you ride: Spare tube Tire levers pump Bike
5 Seat Height/Position 5 Seat height: To see if you re at the right height, sit on your seat and push one pedal all the way down, until it s below the frame. In this position, your leg should be fully extended. Adjust your seat height until your leg is. The reason for these measurements is that when your leg is slightly bent instead of completely straight (a problem with bike frames or seat posts that are too tall), you will avoid injuring your knees. Note: If your hips rock or you re standing on tip-toe when you pedal, your seat is too high. You can adjust the height by loosening the seat post bolt with a wrench or pulling down on the handle (if it s a quick release handle) and raising or lowering the seat. Important: Never raise the seatpost above the minimum insertion point marked on your seat post. The seatpost could fall out when you are riding and you could end up like Marco. Or worse. If the seat needs to be higher than your seatpost allows, you might need a taller post. Seat position: Your seat should be parallel to the ground and clamped in the center of its rails. Some riders prefer a slight downward or upward tilt. Tilting the seat downward can relieve pressure on your crotch but might put too much weight on your arms. You can adjust the angle of your seat by loosening the seat clamp bolts and tilting the saddle downward or upward. Make sure to tighten the seat clamp bolt very securely after adjusting or your seat could come flying out!
6 Avoiding Flats PUMP IT UP! Pumping your tires regularly should be done a once or twice a week (we know you put lots of miles on that poor mule!) like, after church or some other time. Repent for your biking sins-inflate those tires! Not only will you ride faster with higher tire pressure and be able to show off to all of your friends, but you can also avoid flats much more often. The key is frequency and pumping to maximum inflation. Don t worry about whether your tire will blow up with that amount of air. Check the side of the tire (if its not too worn) for the PSI (the maximum inflation pressure), it should say something like PSI or 100 PSI. Remember to let out a bit of air in your tires before you start pumping. That way the seal does not break between your tube and the gauge and puncture the tube. Here are a few more handy tips to make your tires/tubes last longer for you and avoid flats: 1. Buy a decent floor pump to keep at home, and if you can afford it, a mini-pump to take on the road. 2. Avoid glass, rocks and thorns. Even sand or gravel may contain sharp objects. If you have to ride through glass or other debris, ride slowly and, if necessary, stop using a gloved hand to remove it to prevent them from puncturing the tire. 3. Avoid potholes and grates, as they can cause you to get a flat and/or get stuck and cause an accident. 4. Be careful with the tools you use to fix the flat. If you use anything besides a tire lever to put your tire on, be careful not to puncture the new tube you install! 5. Replace worn-out tires. This is really, really important! A $20 investment in a new tire will last you a LONG TIME if you pump your tires frequently versus a $2000 medical bill if your worn tires blow out and cause an accident! Large gashes, low tread or damaged sidewalls are all signs to replace your tires. 6
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