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Barclays Cycle Hire

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Tuesday 17 August 2010 5.38pm
The bikes do look great on the street! but I'm slightly concerned at the amount of suited Business men wobbling about on them in heavy traffic without Cycling Helmets! So far I've only seen 2 cyclists on hire bikes with helmets. Maybe Boris could negotiate a cheap Helmet Offer for people registering with the scheme.
Tuesday 17 August 2010 8.21pm
Jan the old one wrote:
On the news just now, they had to transport a few bikes from waterloo station as there was not enough docking stations? as I only heard the tail end of the item, is that correct?

That was to be expected, and not part of the teething problem. It will always have to be done. It's still probably better than a bunch of people getting cabs, but then if most users would have walked it's worse environmentally.
Wednesday 18 August 2010 1.33am
does anyone know if stations are getting 'refilled' at night?
Been passing by some stations late at night and they always appear to be completely full of cycles.
If this was they case, how would you cycle home in the middle of the night and find a docking station near you?
Wednesday 18 August 2010 8.04am
Hi Tak, yes they have little trucks that drive around all day redistributing bikes. I've seen quite a lot of this going on at night and also during the day around my work/home.
Wednesday 18 August 2010 6.04pm
Thanks Clarice.

So what do you do if you try to cycle home say in middle of night and end up at your docking station which is full - wouldn't that mean the remaining stations nearby would also have been completely restocked?
Also, does anyone know if the system does some sort of re-boot at night and if the cycles / docking stations are somehow affected by that?

Sorry about these hypothetical questions - just would feel better knowing it's all supposed to work rather than having a drama in the middle of the night which is the kind of luck I'm good at attracting.
I have finally received my access key now and am looking forward to try this as soon as I next need a flexible bike instead of my own one.
Thursday 19 August 2010 8.26am
@TAK I think you may have more luck getting a response to those fairly specific questions on
Thursday 19 August 2010 11.45am
Hi again Tak, Zefrog might be right - not sure that I can give you the officially correct answer, but happy to share my experience!
If a station is full, you approach the "terminal" at the docking station and press the menu option that the dock is full and you need another close by. It will advise of your nearest station with available docks and give you another 15 mins for free (you insert your key at some point in the process so it registers this).

If you've got an iphone/smart phone its worth noting there is an app that tells you all the docking stations and their current avaialbility. I've found it to be accurate almost all the time with a couple of exceptions.

In short, yes, you might arrive at a station late at night and it might be full. worst case, by the time you make it to the next station, I suppose that could also have filled up. Unlucky, but possible. The good news is, there are usually a few docking options. Also, it may not be the answer to every transport requirement - if it's 2am and you're alone might be the right time to revert to a cab. The way I look at it - think of all the money saved on cabs/tubes not taken...but sometimes a cab (or equiv. transport) might be the answer.
Thursday 19 August 2010 8.08pm
thanks to both of you - all rather helpful.
just got some apps which could actually make a huge difference how to use it!
Wednesday 25 August 2010 10.45pm
Have now used this scheme on a couple of days and think it's really fantastic - hope I don't jinx it saying that!

Admittedly, bikes are on heavy side and geared quite slow meaning I end up getting rather sweaty pedaling as if there was no tomorrow.
But I love the different experience I get from the upright sitting position (in somewhat slower speed too) as opposed to my bike where I sort of stare a few meters ahead of me into the ground.
Also really practical are the markers on the saddle pole so I can adjust the seat to right position without faffing about and the smart phone applications so I can check ahead making it all a bit easier.
And picking a bike up anywhere in town and dropping it off near the destination feels quite magic too.

Today for example was a prime day for its use - I cycled to work in the morning and returned on the tube during monsoon like rainfall. Without this scheme I would have done both journeys on the tube.

If I stay as happy and excited with it over the next few weeks as I'm after my first 4 days of trial I'm minded to take out he annual membership.
Thursday 26 August 2010 7.08am
If you just accept going at a slow and stately pace you won't get too sweaty, I found! I also love sitting up so straight, it's so much nicer than having your bum in the air.

It's nice being able to just put the bike in a rack and walk away, it takes me ages to lock my bike, and I have to ride home again, despite the monsoon...
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