Category Archives: News

UoM Bike Maintenance Stands

How to use the on-campus bicycle repair stands

There are a 4 repair stands located across campus so you can repair a puncture and more on your bike. Find out how to use them here:

1. Locate your nearest stand using the interactive map.
We are using the stand located near the Renold Building on North Campus for this demonstration.

 

 

2. Hang your bicycle safely on the stand by putting the seat post between the posts ensuring your saddle rests on top as shown in the pictures. You may need to adjust or remove any bicycle lights, saddle bags or reflectors to do this. This safely holds your bike and frees up your hands for the next steps.

3. Select the tools you need for your job. Each repair stand has a comprehensive range of tools including spanners (various sizes), allen keys (various sizes), tyre levers, chain tool, screw drivers, adjustable spanner and pliers.

4. When you are done carefully lift your bicycle off the stand. Then ride away on your newly repaired bicycle!

5. If you notice there is a problem with the repair stand you can report this by emailing es@manchester.ac.uk .

Do you have tips or comments to share on using the repair stands? Join our Facebook discussion.

 

Autumn is coming. It’s time to keep your bike on the road…

Autumn on campus

Join in the conversation on UMBUG Facebook with your tips and advice.

After what has been a hot and intense summer, autumn is back with a change  in the weather and dark nights. Some cyclists will be putting their bikes away, waiting again for the light nights and sunny days of spring.

Autumn and winter cycling can seem daunting, the traffic sounds louder when the roads are wet, the dark might seem more dangerous and more people take to their cars for the school run, to pop to the shops or just to avoid the walk to the station.However, more traffic means that it is often moving more slowly so it’s actually a great time to be on your bike!

There are a few things you’ll need to consider if you decide to keep up that fitness (and allow yourself some extra calories at Christmas for an extra three and a half months of cycling!!):

Prepare

Check the weather forecast the night before and get all your kit together so you’re not dashing around in the morning trying to find your waterproofs or lights.

It’s also worth keeping a spare set of clothes in your office if you can, just in case you get caught in unexpected rain.

Bike

More regular cleaning is important, especially the chain and drivetrain components as the muck you pick up will act to wear the cassette and chainrings.

Check your tyres are properly inflated. This helps stop mud, which can conceal all sorts of sharp nasties, being picked up and sticking to your tyres.

Carry a spare tube – it’s much quicker than a repair kit or a long walk in the rain.

You should think about mudguards, if appropriate,to protect yourself and other road users from spray.

Clothing

You might want to invest in a decent waterproof jacket if you’re riding at night something highly reflective is good. Decent jackets can be expensive but staff can buy safety equipment (like lights, jackets, helmets) through the Cycle to Work scheme, with a saving on tax.

Waterproof trousers and rucksack covers can also prove useful. I tend to wear cheap cotton combat trousers as they have a lot of pockets and dry quickly. I personally use walking gaiters to keep my trousers out of my chain and they help keep my shoes and trousers dry from the spray off the road.

A thin balaclava or hat to keep your ears warm and gloves that are wind chill and rain resistant are good for frosty mornings.

Visibility

Lights – it’s the law! I strongly recommend USB chargeable ones as you can charge them up while you’re working and you can get some relatively inexpensive ones. The quality does vary though, so read the reviews.

Keep your lights clean.

If you’re going to go off road or on roads with little or no street lighting, you’ll probably also want to consider an extra bright front light (300-400 lumens on more) that shows up obstacles.

High visibility clothing will also help drivers spot you.

The environment

When riding in the autumn, fallen leaves can be a problem, as they tend to aggregate at the sides of the road where you want to cycle. When wet they are slippery and when dry they can hide potholes and nails, so it’s a good idea to keep away from the kerb.

Frosty mornings are not too bad, just be careful on quieter roads as they may not have been gritted and can be slippery.

You could also consider cycling into work and getting the train home if there’s a convenient one near your home.

Autumn cycling isn’t that different to the summer – apart from the fact you don’t sweat as much if you’re dressed prope

I’m relatively new to cycling; I got a Cyclescheme bike 4 years ago and for the first two years stopped cycling when the clocks changed. A couple of years ago though I decided I wanted to keep going through the winter because getting motivated to start again in spring was hard work! I got a Cyclescheme accessories-only package and haven’t looked back since.

By Dr Andrew Thomas, School of Materials and Photon Science Institute

Brunswick Park Development

 

Brunswick Street continues to be transformed into a new landscaped, pedestrianised and cycle friendly space, Brunswick Park, that complements TfGM’s Oxford Road Bus Priority scheme, encouraging public transport and cycle use.

Whilst completion is planned for May 2018, the start of the new academic year in September presents the University with a number of safety challenges to ensure that access is maintained to surrounding buildings for large numbers of returning staff and students. The access routes through and around the periphery of the park are currently constrained by the construction works, and therefore make it very difficult for cyclists and pedestrians to share the same space.

As a consequence, the Directorate of Estates and Facilities are actively discouraging cyclists to cycle through and around the periphery of Brunswick Park. ‘Cyclists Dismount’ signage will be placed at strategic access points to the park area, and cyclists are encouraged to walk their bikes to a cycle parking location, or shelter, close to the building that is their destination. To help matters further, they ask that cyclists do not use Brunswick Park as a through route to other locations on campus. Building and wayfinding signage will be erected around the park to help pedestrians/cyclists reach their destination.

The Directorate of Estates and Facilities are therefore seeking the patience and co-operation of the University’s cycling fraternity, to bear with them, for what will be a challenging start to the academic year.

During the course of the next few months, the contractor will be handing back to the University sections of the completed park, as progress is made towards completion, which should gradually relieve some of the pressure on space for pedestrians/cyclists to safely move around and between buildings in this locality.

We reproduce this press release without comment!

MANCHESTER CYCLING FESTIVAL BEGINS WITH NUDE BIKE RIDE

Hundreds of people are set to take to the streets of Manchester for a fortnight of free cycling events including the now infamous World Naked Bike Ride.

On Friday 9th June more than 200 brave cycling enthusiasts are expected to gather in Manchester for the incredible ‘bare as you dare’ ride. Ride organiser Andrew Fisher says “It’s all about getting cyclists to be more visible on roads. Drivers say they don’t see you, we’re saying cyclists need to be seen to get their fair share of the road.” Similar events take place in cities across the world and aim to highlight the vulnerability of cyclists.

The nude ride marks the beginning of North West Velo Fest 2017. This popular, free festival is now in its 6th year and despite appearances isn’t only for the naked or lycra-clad crowd. Festival organiser Joe Hulme says “There’s something for everyone, obviously the naked bike ride is the one everyone notices, who couldn’t? But it’s not all about getting your kit off. There are lots of other less scary opportunities to feel the wind through your hair in new places.”

The festival runs for two weeks from Friday 9th to Saturday 24th June. Events include a free bike tour of Manchester’s musical history, a street party, led countryside rides and races with cash prizes. The full lineup is available at http://www.nwvelofest.com.

Cycling UK BUG membership

The University has renewed it’s Bicycle User Group membership with Cycling UK. The group affiliation means that individuals can affiliate too and enjoy all the benefits available at a discounted price of £24 per person for annual membership.

If you are interested, contact umbug@manchester.ac.uk for the club code and enter it in the box at the bottom of the page when you join via https://shop.cyclinguk.org/membership/affiliate-membership-myself.

 

LGBT History Month

We helped kick off LGBT History Month in collaboration with All-Out, the LGBT staff network group, by wearing go-faster rainbow shoelaces and ribbons to the cyclist breakfast on 1st Feb.  Thanks everyone who took part!

UMBUG Priorities for 2017

UMBUG Priorities for 2017

On Thursday 17 January 2017, the UMBUG projects team hosted a brainstorming session to define UMBUG’s priority activities for 2017. Lots of ideas were suggested to promote and improve cycling for staff and postgrads at the University of Manchester. A wide range of ideas were discussed – big and small! These were then prioritised and the team are working on next steps and an action plan. The top issues discussed include:

  • removal of abandoned bikes
  • University incentives for cycling
  • celebrating UMBUG’s 10th anniversary
  • facilities for cyclists (showers, storage and drying facilities)
  • prohibiting smoking near cycle shelters
  • more cycle shelters / increased capacity
  • engaging with the Sporticipate programme (Sports Office)
  • lobbying for cleaner (greener) buses / Oxford Road agreements
  • making contact with TfGM and exemplar universities (Sheffield & Nottingham)
  • promoting UMBUG events to a wider audience
  • UMBUG promotional stands at major buildings some mornings / lunchtimes
  • improving the corridor travel website
  • continuing the cycle routes video project
  • maintenance sessions at the monthly breakfast events
  • tool stands to be covered by the shelter guardians system
  • reporting long-term issues with cycle shelters (leaking gutters).

If you are interested in getting involved, please email umbug@manchester.ac.uk.

Merry Christmas!

snow and cycle UMBUG would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year – we’ll be canvassing your opinions and ideas in January to direct our focus in 2017.  Have a great break!

Electric cargo bike loan scheme

Through the EU funded Triangulum project, electric cargo bikes are now available to hire free of charge to staff from The University of Manchester, Manchester Metropolitan University, the Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and businesses based on the Oxford Road Corridor.

The Triangulum project partners in Manchester are working together to create a smart city district within Corridor Manchester. This includes increasing the number of electric vehicles and electric bikes being used, reducing the reliance on diesel and petrol vehicles and in turn reducing carbon emissions, traffic congestion and pollution.

Manchester Bike Hire has been commissioned by Triangulum to provide an electric cargo bike loan scheme. The modern electric cargo bike fleet allows Corridor partners the opportunity to try out bikes of different designs and sizes, all free of charge. The fleet is zero emission, with improved environmental impact when the batteries are charged from renewable sources.

The electric cargo bike loan scheme will enable staff to learn whether a bike can be integrated into their day-to-day operations on a permanent basis. The scheme incorporates up-to-date data collection and asset management techniques, using online reservations and GPS tracking, along with digital maintenance and repair record-keeping. Users will be provided with cargo bike familiarisation training before hire.

To book an electric cargo bike demonstration contact Manchester Bike Hire or call: 07523 092285.

Blindfold cycling and walking event

The Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) is inviting cyclists to take part in a blindfold cycling and walking event on Friday 8 July on Oxford Road.

Only walkers will be blindfolded, so that they can understand some of the challenges blind and partially-sighted people face when they come in contact with cyclists in the streets, crossing a cycle lane or using a shared space.

As the cycleway on Oxford Road is being built, with bus stops being moved and a new cycle lane being laid, the RNIB wants to highlight the importance of making this scheme accessible to all cyclists and pedestrians. The new cycle lane will pass in front of the Manchester Eye Hospital, so it is more than likely that cyclists will meet blind and partially sighted pedestrians along the way.

RNIB will invite councillors, MPs and infrastructure designers to take part too.  They would like you to bring along your bikes and take turns between cycling along the road and walking with a blindfold on.

The activity will also be a good chance for blind and partially sighted people to understand how you feel when cycling on a  road and interacting with pedestrians. RNIB will give you some tips to follow when you meet a person with sight loss while cycling, as well as hearing your views.

For more information, please email alba.detoronozal@rnib.org.uk