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Asking For Filtering Tips

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' at netrider.net.au started by Pekson, Nov 18, 2012.

  1. I would like to ask you experienced riders for some filtering tips.

    At the present moment as a new rider I tend to just sit behind the cars even though there's a clear chance to filter but I am hesitant.

    What makes me hesitant is that I am about 10-20 car lengths from the front, but I have a feeling I can make it but don't do anything.

    While filtering the traffic light will go green and there is no room for me to get into a lane but am stuck in between the cars.

    There is not enough room in the front eg. Once I get to the front, I end up being in front of the white lines making it so that I'm in a danger zone or have to stop right on where the pedestrians walking.

    Also as example there is a bank of cars indicating right, do you ride past all of them and just cut to the front if you know the red light will stay a while? Example location is intersection Alexandra pde turning right into Nicholson st?

    If you have more examples then please add.

  2.  Top

  3. Okay, so bear in mind I'm just a noob - only been riding for three months - but I live in the inner suburbs and filter fairly regularly:

    - When the traffic lights go green I slot into a gap between cars. There's almost always a bikelength gap between queued cars; if there's not, go a bit further up. (I'm pretty conservative when it comes to not filtering through moving traffic - more experienced riders might do this differently. Likewise if the gap is just a bit too narrow for comfort I'll stop filtering.)

    - I often turn right from Alexandra (westbound) to Nicholson (northbound). Sometimes I filter up to the front, sometimes I chicken out and keep going to Royal Pde and then up Sydney Rd. Filtering when you're turning right is probably not the safest thing in the world, but it's definitely possible, and staying in the queue usually means waiting for the lights to change several turns, and that's not my idea of a fun time. Perhaps someone more experienced than me could comment on whether I'm doing it right or wrong here?
  4. Have you tried a tobacconist?
  5. They charge a fee, I like it for free, you see.
  6. if the gap is too narrow use your horn. that's what it's for.
  7. fwiw i don't often filter turning right.
    unless theres two lanes that go right. then it's safe to toodle up between cars.
    just that filtering between a lane turning right and a lane going straight, well people change their mind without warning.
    inbetween two lanes going right they can't.

    but how and what you do is up to you. same as anything riding related. stay within your limmits, don't take uneccessary risks because you're running late etc.
    sometimes filtering is the safer option/road positioning. sometimes it's not. always pick the path of lesser risk.

    i won't block the path of pedestrians at the front. but if no-ones using that space, i will. i don't give a flying crap about crossing the painted white line. my only concern is my space, my buffer.
    it's not my fault theres no painted boxes at the heads of intersections in Melbourne for powered two wheelers, bicycles. even though they have legitimate use of the roads. i did'nt design the shitty intersections we have here that really only cater for cars and trucks.
    so fcuk it, i'm selfish on the bike. i will take the space, legit or not, because it's my ass on the line.
    i ain't putting my ass where some bimbo can drive a barina up it because she's liking facebook
    • Like Like x 3
  8. For filtering:-

    Tip 1, you have to be really good at riding slow.

    If you are wobbly, or have to dangle your feet....forget it.

    Slow riding has to be pretty much automatic, as in you don't have to think about it.

    Tip2, you need to be able to see a clear gap, big enough for you, all the way to the front.

    Tip3, approaching traffic lights, you have to really KNOW the sequence of the lights, so that you can decide if you have time to make it to "pole position".

    If you don't make it to the front when the lights change, you are basically reliant on the good will of the other vehicle drivers around you to make some space for you.

    This is not something that I would like to bet on.

    Tip4, once you get to the front, keep the bike in first gear and pay attention to the lights, remember that mostly you'll be the quickest off the line.

    If you doze off, the traffic will just go on anyway, ignoring you.
    • Like Like x 4
  9. don't stress too much about getting half way up the line and stop[ping cause of mirrors, it's usually pretty easy to find a gap and get back in and most cars dont mind too much if you dont hold them up... next lights you'll be off again and they have their spot back.

    be carefull of people that are able to change lanes... they may not indicate... if theres a car next to them and no gap then they're pretty well locked in.

    don't stress about crossing the lines at the front... I generally ride up to the line, even with traffic, wait till the pedestrians have crossed then move forward clear of the traffic. If anyone crosses against the red man they're breaking the rules too and can just walk around you.

    be REALLY carefull if your filtering on the left or right side of the road and not up the middle. Cars have somewhere to go, whether it's parking, turning or u-turning and they may not look if they're in the side lanes cause there wont be another car coming past.

    i've also found being noisy helps... not hitting the horn at everyone but it definately helps to be heard. you can also consider high beam for extra visibility... it all just depends on the circumstances.
  10. If you don't think you're going to make it to the front by the light change, then don't filter until you feel like you will be able to slip into a gap and rejoin the traffic. So that means you're choosing to remain in the queue, so FFS leave at least two bike lengths gap to the car infront. If something is coming up from behind and it looks like you're about to be a vehicle sandwich, this space gives you a chance to move into the gap between the queues, or just get out of the way. So make sure you leave a gap!

    Being an excellent slow rider is a good tip. If you're not a confident slow rider, you generally shouldn't filter.
    • Like Like x 2
  11. Think CrazyCam summed it up quite well.

    My only advice is don't be a cockhead about it, don't blip your throttle as you go past cars, don't squeeze though really narrow gaps, don't block crossings until all pedestrians have gone, filter at a reasonable pace, thank people that let you in if you do bork it and need to merge and if some idiot blocks you in just shake it off.

    If you do muck up and clip a mirror FFS stop and make it right with the driver (unless they're brandishing a gun/knife/bat), do not just keep on riding even if you feel it was their fault.
    • Like Like x 3
  12. #12 Vertical C, Nov 19, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2012
    And acknowledge the driver if they let you in.

    Plus one on stopping if you hit a mirror, it happens. A couple of minutes of concern will save a lot of agro later. I have hit a few over the years, always stopped but there is never damage (except once the guy claimed there was so I just gave him my details but he must of calmed down and thought better of it because I never heard anything).
    • Like Like x 2
  13. Check behind you for approaching bikes before you move into the space between lanes.

    If you have to swap from one side to another while filtering, you MUST stop and look down the line for other filtering bikes first.
    • Like Like x 1
  14. If you know the light sequence well and you believe you can fit between the vehicles, just do it. Once you hesitate you will start second guessing, moving slower to the front, wobbling and then the nerves set in. You should start practicing at large intersections where the gap between cars are much bigger and where the lights usually take forever to change. When you do it more often it does become sort of second nature...however make sure you have clear vision of all the cars, keep an eye out for the popo just in case they have a bad day.
    • Like Like x 1
  15. Filtering rule #1 is don't crash.

    Filtering rule #2 is don't slow down the cages. Think of filtering as having someone at the supermarket who has a lot of shopping let you go in front when you are just buying a litre of milk. If you get to pole position and take off slowly then you have essentially just pushed in. It's like having the kids rush in with a trolley load after you have just been let in. If you are quick and courteous filtering benefits everyone.
    • Like Like x 1
  16. Have a browse of the Learning to Filter thread (last updated in August and goes for 17 pages). Should give you a few tops and includes a number of videos.

    When the light changes (in your favour); FFS, check for red-light runners before moving off the line!
    • Like Like x 3
  17. Another thing to look out for if filtering on the left.
    Watch out for opening doors!! Nearly had one swing open on me today between a park and stationary car!

    Also if you regularly travel on the same route, take a note of the potential timing or sequence of the lights in some instances.
    Like on my path to work, I know which lights are quick and which lights takes donkey years and can gauge if the queue is long enough for me to get to the front.

    Another tip that I was given, find other routes that might have wider road and allowing more rooms for filtering.
  18. Just do it like this guy :) :

  19. You should not rely on knowing the light sequence to decide if you will filter or not. You should have a filtering plan for each individual filter as you encounter it with options for if you get to the front and options if the traffic starts moving before you get to the front. What happens if a vehicle ahead starts to change lanes and you cannot progress further? Then all your knowledge of light sequence becomes irrelevant. What if you have insufficient time to make it to the front or a large vehicle blocks your path all the way to the front? What if you find the lead vehicle at the lights is a police car who may take a dim view of you filtering ahead of the solid stop line? Then you can still gain advantage by filtering, you just can't make it all the way to the front. Not being able to make it to the front is no reason not to filter.

    Slow riding helps, but I filter in gaps so small (eg <1 inch each side) that I have to duck paddle it through to ensure I don't touch anything. Filtering in the big wide open lane widths of Australia should be quite easy.

    Give drivers a thanks wave when you pull in front of them. It is appreciated.
  20. And beware of pedestrians crossing between stopped vehicles. Filter dead slow past vehicles which you cannot see past. Especially passenger buses. What comes out of buses? Pedestrians who want to cross the road.
    • Like Like x 2