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9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 3/26/2006 4:21:29 PM EDT
My wife is always telling me that I need to stop on a "trip" in order to activate a change in light patterns.

I've heard this from others as well. Is there such a thing?
Link Posted: 3/26/2006 4:23:04 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/26/2006 4:25:52 PM EDT by Young-Kiwi]
The usual Method is a loop of wire under the road.
So as the car passes over it, it creates a eletrical impluse. That tells the lights computer you are there.

BTW...
I have seen places where the loop has been under one lane and not the other.
Also, you need to pull to the top lines, becuase they are usually placed (looped) around the 1/2 metre to 3 metre mark.

Link Posted: 3/26/2006 4:23:50 PM EDT
Yep, looks like a circle of metal wire set into the road..
Link Posted: 3/26/2006 4:24:29 PM EDT
Yup, they are all over the place. Ask someone who rides a motorcycle and he'll start cursing how the lights never change for him!
Link Posted: 3/26/2006 4:26:06 PM EDT
Some newer lights have "cameras" mounted on top of the light pole that "see" approaching traffic.
Link Posted: 3/26/2006 4:26:55 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:
My wife is always telling me that I need to stop on a "trip" in order to activate a change in light patterns.

I've heard this from others as well. Is there such a thing?



In some areas, yes. There is a coil under the pavement which senses your car. If it doesn't sense a car, then the light can skip that part of the cycle. It does aid efficiency. If one does not pull far enough forward - idiots here often stop a car length back, the light won't cycle. So, to a great extent, your wife is right. That said, it isn't all over, so there will be many times when it makes no difference. Now, they are starting to use either optical or microwave sensors on the lights so they can detect a presence of a vehicle without the extra electronics.

I remem,ber one time I was on my motorcycle, and the light wouldn't turn. Fortunately, my wife was behind me and I ahd to motion her to move up a bit so as to "get noticed" by the detector.
Link Posted: 3/26/2006 4:27:07 PM EDT
Link Posted: 3/26/2006 4:27:50 PM EDT
Yes, see the cuts in the road near where you stop at a red light at major intersections.

Once was behind an eldery woman stopped 20 ft from the large white strip you stop at. Had to tell her, pull up closer or that light isn't ever gonna go your way...
Link Posted: 3/26/2006 4:30:31 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Barrelburner:
Some newer lights have "cameras" mounted on top of the light pole that "see" approaching traffic.



Those are to monitor traffic in general, at 'Traffic Control Headquaters'. I doubt they trip the lights.
Link Posted: 3/26/2006 4:35:45 PM EDT
there are those "trip wires".
They look like boxes with the corners cut off.
This is one way of Light sensors
There are 3 or 4 methods
"trip wire"
Timed
and some have head light sensors
I forget the last one.
Link Posted: 3/26/2006 4:42:40 PM EDT

Originally Posted By capnrob97:

Originally Posted By Barrelburner:
Some newer lights have "cameras" mounted on top of the light pole that "see" approaching traffic.



Those are to monitor traffic in general, at 'Traffic Control Headquaters'. I doubt they trip the lights.

I had a thread about these "cameras."archive.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?b=1&f=5&t=383270
19kilo replied:

"They are cameras, They replaced the old magnetic loop detectors in the pavement. They are adjusted for zones and are the eyes of the controller. The controller can be adjusted for time of various lanes. Simple traffic actuation, sometimes they do act up or don't pick up small cars. It can get wild when paving through an intersection. By the way I work for Texas Dept of Transportation."
Link Posted: 3/26/2006 4:50:10 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/26/2006 4:53:00 PM EDT by capnrob97]

Originally Posted By Barrelburner:

Originally Posted By capnrob97:

Originally Posted By Barrelburner:
Some newer lights have "cameras" mounted on top of the light pole that "see" approaching traffic.



Those are to monitor traffic in general, at 'Traffic Control Headquaters'. I doubt they trip the lights.

I had a thread about these "cameras."archive.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?b=1&f=5&t=383270
19kilo replied:

"They are cameras, They replaced the old magnetic loop detectors in the pavement. They are adjusted for zones and are the eyes of the controller. The controller can be adjusted for time of various lanes. Simple traffic actuation, sometimes they do act up or don't pick up small cars. It can get wild when paving through an intersection. By the way I work for Texas Dept of Transportation."



Ok, thanks for the info..

Maybe that explains why lights at Baymeadows and Southside in Jax, FL screw-up every other week... You can sit through 2 cycles of a long light before you lane gets a green light... I now stay half a car back from the car in front at that intersection and move to the left turn lane and take another route if I see the lights miss a beat...
Link Posted: 3/26/2006 4:52:15 PM EDT

Originally Posted By capnrob97:

Originally Posted By Barrelburner:
Some newer lights have "cameras" mounted on top of the light pole that "see" approaching traffic.



Those are to monitor traffic in general, at 'Traffic Control Headquaters'. I doubt they trip the lights.



There are those types too, but these "Look" at the various traffic lanes, turn lanes, Etc. and "See" if there are cars there or not. The control for the intersection will then alter the traffic light timing for the intersection.

My BIL in the head of the dept that sets them up in a neighboring town.

Tall Shadow
Link Posted: 3/26/2006 7:13:21 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/26/2006 7:14:01 PM EDT by harleyrkc]
I ride all summer. And I've never had trouble with those lights. Other course I ride a Harley Davidson tour frame which is heavy as hell. That may help a little. As for the rice rockets.....well..... they deserve it. Most of the rice rocket guys around here don't know how to handle a bike on the road anyway.
Link Posted: 3/26/2006 8:34:15 PM EDT
I'm not sure which method they use on the lights around here but at most intersections it doesn't work for shit if the road surface is covered in snow or ice.
Link Posted: 3/26/2006 8:45:48 PM EDT
Yup, I have had a problem riding my HD 1200C at the lights. There is one company that sold a magnet to place under the bike frame to aid in tripping the wire sensors. It was tested and seemed to work about 80% of the time.

There are some of the camera lights here also and I have never had a problem getting my green when riding my bike at those intersections.
Link Posted: 3/27/2006 9:38:39 AM EDT
They must work. They see me coming and my light turns red every time!
Link Posted: 3/27/2006 9:46:22 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Paul:
We've got them for the electric gates at work and there are a bunch of motorcycle riders. The usual trick is to ride right over the wire itself - or get a second bike along side you. The bitch is that there are days when this works and days that it doesn't so the bike has to sit there and wait for a car or truck to come to the rescue.



If you swing your kickstand down and set it directly on top of the wire it will trip many of these loop detectors. I've used this trick for years with great success.
Link Posted: 3/27/2006 10:02:51 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Barrelburner:
Some newer lights have "cameras" mounted on top of the light pole that "see" approaching traffic.



Thats what they have in here (Lansing, MI). They come on at like 7PM and stay on till about 7AM, then its back to normal timing. You can see a light on a hill and drive 3 miles to it and it will be green the whole way. The first time I ever seen em I thought the timer was broke.
Link Posted: 3/27/2006 10:03:36 AM EDT

Originally Posted By JavaMan:

Originally Posted By Paul:
We've got them for the electric gates at work and there are a bunch of motorcycle riders. The usual trick is to ride right over the wire itself - or get a second bike along side you. The bitch is that there are days when this works and days that it doesn't so the bike has to sit there and wait for a car or truck to come to the rescue.



If you swing your kickstand down and set it directly on top of the wire it will trip many of these loop detectors. I've used this trick for years with great success.



Yep, Kickstand trick works sometimes, depends on the bike. Steel kickstands versus aluminum or other alloy kickstands.

My bike is predominantly aluminum (frame, swingarm, wheels, engine, etc..). These non ferous metals wont trip these magnetic circuits.

Kickstand is usually steel on most bikes (getting to be more and more aluminum kickstands now..), You just need to make sure bike is in nuetral or it may kill the engine on some bikes. Some bikes now have a kickstand safety switch/sensor.. so you don't go out riding in gear when the kickstand is still down, which may cause you to crash if your try to lean over in a turn with it deployed.

What works best is to take super magnets you can by from a hardware store and mount them to the underside of the bike. I took a couple of magnets from a dead PC hard drive and glued them onto the bike's lower chin cowling.

Now, it triggers those intersection lane sensors and private community gates nearly all the time. They sell these traffic light kits for motorcyclist for $20-$30, but all they are super strong magnets you can buy for a few bucks at a hardware store.
Link Posted: 3/27/2006 11:27:26 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/27/2006 11:28:11 AM EDT by RogerBall]
uh oh, motorcycle highjack.
The method i've used when the light won't change is to kill the motor, either with the key switch or the kill switch and then crank the motor back on. The large magnetic field from the starter motor does the trick.
Link Posted: 3/28/2006 6:03:00 PM EDT
Interesting - I didn't know about the magnet trick but will have to give it a try.

In my city many of these circuits - especially those on small, side street signals that cross a wide, busy street - are apparently programmed to only trip the light when two or more cars are waiting. As a single car you have to wait several minutes before getting a green. I mean you get to hear two or three whole songs on the radio before the light cycles.

But if you stop on the sensor loop, wait a few seconds, back up off the sensor, then pull forward again, you'll see the "Don't Walk" start flashing on the other street almost immediately.
Link Posted: 3/28/2006 7:09:35 PM EDT
We used to have one old treadle type traffic sensor when I took driver's ed many years ago. The school made everybody drive over it, and told them how to feel the "dip" when the car hit it right.

(it worked on air pressure, like the signal tubing at service staions. When the weight of a car pressed down on the plate, it pushed the air in a rubber tube against a switch which would tell the "brain box" that there was a vehicle waiting.)

Another trick is to stop at the "corner" of the loop. Something about the intersection of the wires being more sensitive than the middle of the run.


BTW, those loops are called "induction coils" or "induction loops"
Link Posted: 3/28/2006 7:15:59 PM EDT
I ride a Suzuki GS500, which isn't a huge bike, and I haven't run across one it can't trip yet, although it has a fair bit more steel than more modern sportbikes. If you do ride, and you notice one that doesn't trip, call the DOT and they should recalibrate it.
Link Posted: 3/28/2006 7:28:13 PM EDT
If you ride a motorcycle all you have to do is stop on top of one of the wires, works every time!

And for those that bought magnets, or the Green Light Trigger or one of the other ways to separate you from you money, well...the truth is that magnets won't do anything, the inductive loop is a low power electro magnet, it senses mass, and doesn't react to magnets at all. Ferrous metals aren't required, they don't work that way.

Here's an interesting post I found on another message board:
"I read your article on triggering traffic signals with a bike
and would like to tell you a few facts about vehicle detectors
as
I am a designer of these units. Firstly, magnets
have no effect at all on loop detectors (unless of course the
magnet is so big that it acts more like a big mass of metal.)"

Graham Lill, Dept. of Infrastructure
Link Posted: 3/28/2006 7:30:30 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/28/2006 7:30:44 PM EDT by DoubleFeed]
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