Monday, August 10, 2009

cyclefriday! The Merdeka Slow Ride 14th August 2009

It's The Merdeka Slow Ride! Come and Join us for the fun.

Meeting place: Pelita near KLCC

Meeting Time: 6pm onwards for Teh Tarik session.

Ride start: 8.30pm

Ride duration: about 1 hour.

Note: Not suitable for road bikes coz it's gonna be too slow.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

cyclefriday slow ride 12 June 2009

Objective: To familiarise cyclists with Kuala Lumpur busy traffic as well as to promote bicycle as an alternative transport. A slow pace ride is one the best ways to enjoy the night scenary in Kuala Lumpur.

Meeting place: Pelita near KLCC

Meeting Time: 6pm onwards for Teh Tarik session.

Ride start: 8.30pm

Ride duration: about 1 hour.

Note: Not suitable for road bikes coz it's gonna be too slow.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

How about converting motorbike lane to bicycle lane?

Lately I have been using the motorbike lane at the Federal Highway on my journey to office from USJ to KL. The motorbike lane is separated from the highway and is a stretch from Klang to Midvalley Megamall. I travelled during the non peak hours i.e after 8.30am and find it very safe. The lane is about 9 feet wide thus has ample space for motorbikes to overtake.

You need to be careful as you enter the motorbike lane. I would normally stop at this point.

Ensure that you ride on the left hand side and use the white line as a guide to ride straight.

Need a break and refill. No problem:-) On the way towards Kl direction, there's a stall after the Armada Hotel, Petaling Jaya.

On the way towards Klang, there's a cendol seller after you passed by Jalan 222. It's before the Overhead bridge.

At about 100-150 metres towards the exit, I would move to the right hand side to enable me to have easy and safe exit.

Make sure that you look back to ensure that you have clear traffic and use your right hand to indicate that you are moving to the right.

I would stop at the exit point look for oncoming cars.

It would be GREAT if the laws allow motorbikes to use the federal highway so that the motorbike lane could be use SOLELY for bicycles. The federal highway has emergency lane that could be used by motorcyclists.

I think it could encourage more people to cycle to work especially the one residing and working in Klang, Shah Alam, Subang Jaya, Petaling Jaya and Kuala Lumpur. Most people didn't realise that for distance below 30km, it's most efficent to cycle than taking the public transport. I know coz I am doing it on daily basis. I will blog later on this matter. So for now keep on cycling using the motorbike lane so that motorcyclists would be familiar with our presence. I really find it enjoyable cycling to KL or Midvalley Megamall via the motorbike lane.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Watch Out!-The Left Turn Junction

1. I always noted that most motorists did not give signal when they are turning left. Are they trying to save their car battery or they think we can read their mind that they are turning left?

2. So when you are approaching the Left Turn Junction and you want to go STRAIGHT, you need to:

3. Look back.
There are two types of drivers/motorcyclists

4. First type. They will slow down and go behind you and give signal that they are turning left. So you just need to flag your right hand to indicate that you are going straight. I always give thumb up as a gesture of appreciation:-)

5. Second type. They will start moving away a bit and sometimes didn't give signal to turn left. Normally I will just brake and let them go first. Sometimes I will just TURN LEFT to avoid colliding with them.

6. Sometimes I will just stop at the corner and wait till the traffic clears.

7. If there's vehicle coming out from the left turn junction, maintain EYE CONTACT with the driver. Make sure he/she sees you. Flag your left hand to indicate to give way for you to go first. If the driver is not making eye contact with you, just brake and let the vehicle to go first.

maintain eye contact with the driver (grey car) coming out from the junction.

8. Practice defensive riding skills. Always be on alert. Never ever rush. Just relax and enjoy your ride.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

How to improve your liquidity

Ensuring that we are always liquid is critical. A company could go bust overnight due to liquidity problem. What is liquidity? Liquidity simply means to be able to pay when we have to pay. Likewise as an individual, managing our liquidity is critical as well. We need to basically set up an emergency fund of our monthly expenses between 3 to 6 months to enable us to sustain should we encounter financial crisis like this. To ensure that we are always liquid, we need to monitor our cashflow. If we have been tracking our monthly or better still daily expenses then we could easily indentify the expenses that we could cut down.

We have been conditioned all this while to drive even to the nearest destination. Nowadays, bicycle has been my first choice mode of transport, followed by motorbike, then car and public transport. Not to forget we could even walk, okay!

Bike commuting is one of the ways to improve our cashflow. I am using this drinking container to put aside all the direct or indirect expenses that I could save whenever I am cycling my bike instead of using car/motorbike..

What are the direct and direct expenses that you could save?

Cost per kilometre (km)
How much does it cost you for every km travel if you are using your car or motorbike? I prefer this method since it also encourage me to track the distance that I have travelled so far. For instance if my cost per km is 15sen, then if I cycled for 50km to work (to and fro), then I would save RM7.50 (RM0.15 x 50km) that particular day. This is only applicable to activities that
instead of using car/motorbike, you cycled. Sports activities are not counted.

How much would I have to pay for parking? Let say RM2.50 per entry. Then that RM2.50 will be put into the container.

Do I have to pay toll for my journey? For instance, if I am using the NPE highway, I would have to incur RM4.80 (to and fro).

Maybe as a result of this bike commuting, you would quit smoking. Let say RM10 per day. Read the story of Riezal who has finally quit smoking

Gymnasium fees
Since you have been cycling regularly, you might stop going to the gym as well. Let say another RM50 per month saved.

I know that it's a bit tedious, but unless we know where our money goes to, we could never be able to improve our cashflow. Well, it's all about habit forming.

Commuting bike doesn't need to be expenseive. I acquired these 2 used bikes for about RM1,000. So far no problem and it has travelled for more than 2,000 km.

Fixie (Single Speed Fixed Gear)

Giant Chromoly 21 Speed

The most common operating expenditures would be:

Flat tires
Replacing tubes would be very expensive. A tube would cost between RM10 to RM16 depending on the bike shop. A cheapest solution would be to patch the tube. I bought a box of patch for RM10 only. It has 48 patches incusive of a glue. So per patch it only cost you about 21sen (RM10/48).

Replacing tires
You don't need to buy high performance tires for commuting purposes. My tires only cost me RM25 each. Honestly I didn't know how often do I need to replace it yet. Let say for 3 months (60 working days), then the cost would be RM0.83 per day (RM50/60 days)

Parts wear and tear
I don't upgrade. Only replaced it when required. Honestly, I don't have any problem commuting with my fixed gear bike. So the 21speed chromoly MTB is far more than adequate. So far for the past 2 years, the only parts that I replaced was my MTB's crank arm.

The whole idea is to minimised your operating expenses. It's like setting up your bicycling account. At the end of the day, you would be amazed that how much you could have saved. So cycle more in life (CMILe)

Read Dino's article on Spend wisely

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Friday 10th April, Monthly Cycle to Work Day gathering

Come and join us for our monthly cyclefriday! Teh Tarik Session.

Date: Friday 10th April 2009
Time: 6pm onwards (after work)
Venue: Pelita Restaurant near KLCC/Wisma Central

See you there!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The 20sen solution!

The most common problem about bike commuting is a flat tire. I just don't know why but it always happen to me. At one time I was replacing 2-3 tubes per week.'s really costly as per tube it cost me RM10...sometimes RM16. So I began to learn on how to patch a tube. A box that has 48 patches inclusive of glue only cost me RM10. So per patch it's only 20 sen. Another thing that you need is the sand paper.

Step 1. Rub and clean tube repair area using the sand paper (make sure the rubbed area is bigger than patch)

Step 2. Apply glue to repair area and allow to dry (Ensure coated area bigger than patch)

Step 3. When the glue is dry, remove foil of patch and stitch down repair area. (When the foil is taken off, don't touch the back of patch with fingers)

Step 4. Pressed hard (I used the pump) on the patch and let it sticks fast.

That's all and it's really a simple process. I will normally do it when I am relaxing at home:-) I know someone that has 18 patches on his tube!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Please Respect Cyclists. We are Road User Too

I am always intrigued when I read this statement...Please Respect Cyclists. We
are Road User Too... but...but where are the cyclists? Based on my personal
experience cycling to work, I can hardly see cyclists especially the one
wearing helmet.

If we are riding off road, there won't be any motorised vehicles. So what to
respect? When we are riding on road we will prefer to ride the road less
travel. So again what to respect? Hmmmm....I just wonder maybe this statement is
not applicable in Malaysia. Maybe I can conclude that cycling in Malaysia is
very safe. No wonder we don't need any bicycle lane. I am of the opinion that
if cyclists need more facilities and respect, they need to be more visible.
Please enlighten me.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

cyclefriday! Teh Tarik session 13th March 2009.

Bike commuting is the best solution towards easing the traffic jams.
Let's cycle to work this coming friday and meet up after work for "Teh Tarik" i.e 6pm onwards at Pelita near KLCC. See you there:-)

Monday, March 9, 2009

It was a good start! Shah Alam Criterium 8 march 2009

It was a good start! 20 cyclists turned up for the 1st official Shah Alam
Criterium Ride. Some cycled all the way from Klang which was about 22km. They
were hungry when they reached Shah Alam and wanted to have breakfast
first...hhmmm..okay, okay...seems everybody agreed so no problem. So it started
a bit late. The ride was a bit disorganised but everybody was happy:-) Till we
meet again for our next ride on the 12th April 2009.

Change of Venue and Time

Effective from next month onwards:

Venue: Laman Budaya, Tasik Shah Alam

Time: 8.30am

Ooopsss...forgot to take photo during the ride...and not that clear as using
mobile phone.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

If we don't start, who else will?

Tomorrow friday 20th February 2009 Cycle Friday Teh Tarik Session!

If you are working in KL or so happen to be around the area, join us for the bike commuters get together.

Date: Friday 20th February 2009
Time: 6pm onwards
Venue: Pelita Restaurant near KLCC/Wisma Central

See you there!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Bicycle Lane...Perceived to be safe?

1. Whenever the topic of bicycling to work being brought up, one of the comments would be "it's too dangerous unless we have bicycle lane". Let's talk about Malaysian environment. Honestly, I haven't been or even ride in Copenhagen or Netherlands or even Japan or other parts of the world, so I can't comment. But will we ever get the Bicycle Lane in Malaysia? I personally think it will be very very unlikely. Even the buses didn't get more bus lanes and now some areas have been scrapped. And it doesn't look like being enforced coz it seems that no one bother to follow the laws.

2. How about motorbike lanes then? The number of accidents are the highest among the motorcyclists but I don't see that many motorbike lanes being built yet. So, you think you can get bicycle lane? Yes, we have bicycle lane in Taman Tun Dr Ismail and Putrajaya. But see for yourself the condition especially in Taman Tun and it's not solely dedicated to bicycles.

3 We have a notion and perceived that when we ride in a bicycle lane that we will be safe. We are worry of being struck from behind. Yes the possibility is there but it's rare. It can happen for example if riding unlit at night. Personally, I believe that accidents would be more likely at the following areas:

4. Round About

Always use your hand to indicate the direction that you are going. Motorists can't read your mind!

5. T-junction

Take your time especially when you are turning right.

6. Road under constructions

Normally the road becomes narrow. Be assertive. Claim your space.

7. Motorbike lane at Toll booth

Look back. Maintain eye contact with the motorcyclists. Flag your hand to request motorcyclists to give way to you.

8. Spilt Road

Since I am always riding at the extreme left, I would just sometimes push my bike to the edge of the split road.

9. Maybe we need wider emergency lane but improving your skills at the areas mentioned above is a must.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Batu Pahat, Johor...A bike town?

During the Chinese New Year holidays, I cycled around my hometown Batu Pahat, Johor...hmm it seems that the cycling activity is still very much alive:-) You can still see people cycling around.

My bike

We have a lot of Japanese reconditioned bikes here. It's very popular among the folks here as well as the foreign workers. Very much like the Velorbis bikes.

While wondering around the Dataran Penggaram, I saw this very own Malaysian style single speed cargo bike...but the owner was not there.

I saw this bike at the traffic light of Jalan Tan Swee Hoe. The box attached to the rear carrier really attracted me. It's a DIY box decorated with CDs around the box. Owned by a 62 year old uncle staying in Parit Besar. He told me that the box is very convenient for him to put his packed food when he goes to work. (sorry image not that clear)

I met this foreign worker on my way back home. Look at his wheelset. A DIY as well:-) Whaa...not bad..very creative.

This boy happily willing to pose with his Japanese bike.

Who knows maybe one day Batu Pahat can become like Copenhagen. Why not? Maybe we should launch a campaign there. The traffic jams is quite bad nowadays.

For more info about Batu Pahat visit

Thursday, January 22, 2009

On the move-no sweat

If you are confined to being in the office, then what you carry with you when you cycle to work can be very minimum. The most important things would be the spare tube/s, pump, headlight, blinker and maybe your office attire and toiletries. You could also send your week's clothing to your office during weekend and bring it back daily. Provided you have the space! but office shoes
and toiletries shouldn't be a problem.

The challenge would be when you are on the move. Sunny days shouldn't be any problem but how about rainy days? So far I am lucky as whenever it rains, I am always under shelter or at client's place or the rain has just stopped when I am just about to embark on my journey. I will blog later when I am dealing with the situation.

Being on the move requires me to ensure that all the things that I carry are always safe from rain and it's not too heavy to carry over the shoulder. Below are the items that I always carry:

1. Spare Tubes (I always carry 2)
2. Pump
3. Headlight and blinkers
4. Rim tape
5. Tire lever
6. Screw driver
7. Spare batteries
8. Perfume (small bottle body shop)
9. Hair cream
10. Good Morning towel
11. Business Shirt
12. Tie
13. Working documents and stationery
14. PDA
15. Shoe polisher-Cloth type
16. Rain Jacket and pants (Still considering as the bag is full)
17. Slippers ( For rainy days-tied to my mtb rear carrier)

I prefer to travel the bike messenger style. All of the above items are in my Timbuk2 messenger bag (waterproof). I just bought another one Chrome...hehe. Another brand that you can consider would be Crumpler which is available at KLCC. I wear Khaki pants (tights inside as it will dry faster), Dry fit T-shirt and leather shoes (Obermain/Clarks) when cycling to work.

I always reach client's place early. Have teh tarik at "mamak", cool down, clean up with Good Morning towel, put on my business shirt and tie, perfume and hair cream inside the restaurant toilet:-) . I can't perspire and smelly when seeing my clients...k...:-)

Parking is not a problem as I ride a fixie or an old beater chromoly mtb bike. I will just park at the mamak's restaurant or any place that I think that is safe and allowable. Just make sure that I secured it to a railing, pole etc. I don't leave anything behind.

So there you go...on the sweat:-)

p/s: Below are the photos on how you should fold your business shirt so that it won't crumple.

Step 1

Step 2

Step 3

Step 4

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Cycle Friday Teh Tarik Session 16 Jan 2009

It was an enjoyable moment for the inaugural teh tarik session. Man CIOCC and I rode together to Pelita Jalan Ampang from his office at Jalan Masjid Jamek. We don't even sweat...Haha..and as usual the traffic jam madness from Jalan Raja Chulan to KLCC. Others that came were Khairul, Sham Dewa and Kelolo. Some others couldn't make it this time round. Pelita was quite packed at that time. will be chaotic if let say 100 bike commuters turn up. Since initiating Cycle Friday about a month ago, I got to know more Malaysians that cycle to work...and more will answer the calling. Khairul shared his story about making his DIY tights..sewing sponge to his boxer..hehe...Finally he gave up and bought himself a proper tights. He could not imagine what his maid would think of him when she does the washing..."apa ini Pak...seluar ada span"...Hahaha...

One thing that I learned was about being practical and you don't have to think too much about making the decision to cycle to work...Just ride it!

Inspiring video and story by Man CIOCC on his maiden ride to work:

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

How much could you save?

How much could you save when you ride to office?
Let say you ride on every friday and your car petrol is RM10. How about parking charges..Let say RM10. Toll maybe RM2. So the total cost would be:
Petrol RM10 + Parking RM10 + Toll RM2=RM22 per week. Let say you cycle for 50weeks...that would be RM1,100 per annum. How about when you cycle twice a week? That would be RM2,200. That could easily get you another new bike every year! Your bicycle maintenance cost won't be that much since you are just using it for road riding.

How much would the government save on petrol subsidy? Let say 30sen per litre. So for RM10 petrol consumption per person that would be = 5.56 litre per person (RM10/1.80 per litre). So subsidy save per person would be RM1.67. Let say 10,000 people in Malaysia ride to work once a week...that would be RM16,680 (10,000 x RM1.67). So per annum the government would save based on 50week people cycle to work would be RM834,000. How about 100,000 people cycle to work just for once a week? That would be RM8.34 million!

How about the stress caused by the traffic jams? How about better health? How about the environment?

Points to ponder for the begining new year 2009. Hey think no more...Let's just do it! Start with Cycle Friday! If the expatriates can do it, why can't we..