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  • As a current old age learner (37) I'd just like to back up what everyone's saying about cycling helping with learning. As you know everyone drives like a cunt in town and my instructor was surprised by how unfazed i was by it but when you have 800 daily near death experiences on your bike being in a car feels like a pensioners cruise by comparison.

    As for the amount of time you'll need, I had about 20 hours before my test was booked and I'd never driven before in my life but my test was cancelled due to the lockdown and I'm still waiting to have it rebooked (they only started rebooking from the 15th of this month). Just bear that in mind when you're taking your lessons, you might have to wait a long time to even book your test as the backlog is apparently massive, even more pressure to pass first time!

  • Spare bearings for my Dt Swiss 350 hubs - the internet tells me it's four 6902 and two 6802.

    Without going silly money ceramic, will there be much difference between one brand and another for replacements? If so which brands are good?

  • As you know everyone drives like a cunt in town and my instructor was surprised by how unfazed i was by it but when you have 800 daily near death experiences on your bike being in a car feels like a pensioners cruise by comparison.

    Agree with this. I've recently just started driving in London and compared to cycling it's much more relaxing in many ways.

  • Nice one. Here's hoping! I really just want to get it done and over with so we have a bit more flexibility in terms of getting out of town.

  • Thanks, man! I didn't think about the test backlog...

    Are you doing it in London? Who did you use? I've heard it can be easier to get tests outside of London (and the tests are often easier, but I'm not too worried about that specifically).

  • I'm trying to give the additional weight minimal lateral movement throughout the pedal stroke

    The bike rolls about the centre of curvature of the tyre profile, i.e. the pivot is about half an inch above the track surface.

  • Yeah, I'm doing it in Hendon, I live East but did my lessons in North London because I was working for a company in Kentish Town, It's bit of a ball ache now though as I have to cycle to Angel from Forest Gate for a lesson so a 1 hour lesson takes about 3 out of my day.

    I wouldn't be too concerned about taking the test in London as it'll be the only driving you know, plus you practice the test route so it's not like you're going into the test blind. I did get the choice between Hendon or Wood Green though and I chose Hendon because Wood green apparently has the highest failure rate in the country.

    My instructor is just a one woman band that only covers North London, I'm not sure how good she is (I've never had any other instructors) and there's thing's I'm sure she didn't explain very well but I just googled videos of anything I was struggling with which seemed to sort me out the following lesson. If I was to do it again I'd probably just do my lessons with one of the big schools like Red.

  • need to convert my gravel bike to a flat bar dad bike...

    its equipped with sram Rival 1x groupest..

    the s700 gear shiftier seems to be the thing to buy for the gear shifting duties, but not clear on brakes, its seems from some reading that i cant reuse the calipers so need to go for a fresh system, is there recommendation for a cheap but good hydro setup thats managable for the home mechanic to install?

  • its seems from some reading that i cant reuse the calipers

    SRAM road calipers have 18mm pistons, the MTB ones vary but Level (no suffix) seems to have the smallest at 20mm. If you used Level levers with road calipers, your pad pressure would be 81% of what it's designed to be. I'm pretty sure you could easily ride around that.

  • Get an automatic if you are not happy with stick shift

    I love driving an auto, but it's a terrible idea to get tested on one. If you pass your test on a manual box, you're allowed to drive either. If you only pass on an auto, you're restricted to autos until you pass a subsequent test on a manual.

  • Driving tests out of London can be quite different if you've only learnt in London. One of the test routes near me involved hooning around country lanes at 60mph.

  • Did you have to fly-tip some asbestos roofing too?

  • Has anyone got a reliable French translation of Dylan Thomas' "Do not go gentle into that good night". I have seen literal translations but I want a version that has correct imaginary and nuances.

    That depends entirely on whether any good French translator of English poetry has done one. As you've seen, on the Internet you find all sorts of well-intentioned translations that miss the point. French versions I've just looked at on the Internet aren't necessarily that bad metrically, but just not very poetic, and don't rhyme. If there is an existing good one, it'll be in a published book, and someone might well have typed it up and put it on-line, but I can't find anything like that.

    I think in the case of this poem a translation would be difficult, as it relies so much on -ight rhymes in English, which are notoriously difficult to render in French. It's not impossible, just needs someone with the skill to do it, but in any case would end up as quite a different poem. I'd have a go but while I can translate poetry from French into English, I can't translate it from English into French.

    Also, you mean 'imagery', not 'imaginary'. Was that phone auto-correct/complete again?

  • he said in all of his years he had never had an American or Canadian fail the test with him and had good things to say about North American driver training

    I've long been baffled at how poor British training must be given that people fail their driving test so often. IIRC in Germany you spend months doing it, with extensive classroom lessons and a lot of driving practice, and you're not set up to fail in a practical driving test you have to re-take multiple times, as seems common here. I imagine it's more thorough in the US, too?

  • I love driving an auto

    Bloody German-Americanisms. It's 'car' over here. :)

  • what can I do to get rid of them?

    The only thing is that your neighbour could fill in the space between the panels and the roof. If they don't do that, pigeons will quite rightfully continue to consider it a purpose-built nursery.

    taking turns to slide down the Velux windows

    Do you mean by accident or because they play? If the latter, that would remind me a bit of those ravens who slide down snowy hillsides and evidently have a lot of fun.

    Having just looked for it, I found this wonderful video--not a raven but a crow, but still hilarious:

    https://invidious.snopyta.org/watch?v=1W­upH8oyrAo

    Testing if this will embed, but just in case, here's the direct YT link:

    https://youtube.com/watch?v=1WupH8oyrAo

    I love how the crow uses a toboggan.

  • I've long been baffled at how poor British training must be given that people fail their driving test so often. IIRC in Germany you spend months doing it, with extensive classroom lessons and a lot of driving practice, and you're not set up to fail in a practical driving test you have to re-take multiple times, as seems common here. I imagine it's more thorough in the US, too?

    Yes. IIRC we had 15-20 hours of practical driving, a similar amount observing plus the class time. I had a learners permit at 15 then did lots of driving with my parents in the front seat. My dad had a hardship exemption and had a full drivers license at 14 (~1959).

    Here it's made to be a big complex thing. Not sure why. It can't be that difficult, we've all seen some completely incompetent driving.

  • I saw this recently which rather blew my mind: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y_8hPcnG­eCI

  • Here it's made to be a big complex thing. Not sure why. It can't be that difficult, we've all seen some completely incompetent driving.

    I feel like this is entirely the issue. My own experience was of failing twice because of not fully anticipating quite how stupid other road users could be (which obviously is part of the test, but one was bad enough that the tester didn't even respond until after the fact), rather than any actual mechanical failing or lack of understanding.

  • My own experience was of failing twice because of not fully anticipating quite how stupid other road users could be

    The simple mechanical skill of moving a car around without bumping into stationary objects is the easy part. The main skill in driving in traffic is not in avoiding incidents of your own making, it's in making sure you don't get involved in other people's crashes.

  • You do most of your learning after you pass, as they say. The big skills are driving whilst checking your phone, driving on NOS, dumping take aways rubbish at speed and revving really loudly early in the morning.

  • @gbj_tester 12mm QR, is this just a 12mm bolt tru with a nut at the end?

  • What it is seems to depend on who you ask. For my money, it's not QR if you need a tool to remove it, so this is a QR12 bolt. The nut part is always fixed in the fork end regardless.

    Fortunately, fork manufacturers have collaborated in order to reduce inventory for through axles, and agreed to use just three* different thread pitches for 12mm axles, except for those cases where they have gone with proprietary bayonet anchors at the nut end🙂

    *AFAIK - there is a gap in the market for 12×1.25 which might have been filled since I last checked


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  • Also, you mean 'imagery', not 'imaginary'. Was that phone auto-correct/complete again?

    Auto cucumber. And yes it's conveying the right feeling I'm looking for. What translation of "Do not go gentle into that good night.
    Rage, rage against the dying of the light" into French works. I've seen it literally but I don't think it's effective. I'll have to bite the bullet and buy a book. And thanks for taking the time to respond.

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Any question answered...

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