Saturday, November 13, 2010

Saturday Bike Work during a Snow Storm

I installed a front rack on my Maruishi today. The rack is a Berthoud I bought used from Kevin at Hiawatha. I can't resist putting French stuff on my bike. In the past, I've installed Berthoud fenders that are still there and an Ideale saddle. The saddle was the most effective form of torture known to man. The CIA bought it from me and I'm living off the proceeds.
The rack also has a built-in light mount. This is convenient for me because it gets stuff off my already crowded handlebars and mounts the light in a position that prevents the light from being blocked by a handlebar bag. You might be wondering what other stuff I have mounted
on my handlebars. I have a blinking light, a coffee-cup holder, two computers (one in kilometers and the other in miles), a bell, and a perch for my bird. The bird is really my daughter's, but the bird likes me best.
The light I mounted works with a dyno hub and I already own one of those. I've had the Shimano dyno hub for a couple years and have never liked the amount of drag that I noticed. I immediately thought the bearings were too tight, but everyone assured me that's not a problem. I accepted that for a couple years until recently I read an iBob post by a guy who adjusted his Shimano dyno hub bearings and found it reduced the apparent drag.

With this in mind, I adjusted the hub and holy shit! it made a noticeable difference. Now, I've got the whole rig installed: rack, light, and dyno hub.

Does anyone have a decaleur for sale? I initially intended to install a basket on this rack, but it's so cool that I changed my mind and I want a proper French-looking handlebar bag that mounts with a decaleur . The real reason for this is that it will allow me say Berthoud and decaleur in the same sentence. Both of those words sound really cool when spoken with an exaggerated French accent, which I will use. After speaking this sentence, I may find my tongue in a knot, but I'm willing to risk it.
Tomorrow I install the Nokians because it snowed today. I've also have a Huret rear derailleaur in a box somewhere.

The last photo shows the most important tool on the bench and it's not the Allen wrenches -- it's the reading glasses. They let me see what the hell I'm working on.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Errands on the Way Home Today

I like the walk-in ATM access at the bank. It means I don't have to lock my bike outside and this saves me time.

I also like orange bikes. I sat on the one in back and I think it has the most uncomfortable saddle ever, a real ass hatchet.

It's dark, remember your lights.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Do Klingons have Xmas?

My wife found this flyer at a local coffee shop. I don't like their coffee or prices, so I won't give them a plug, even if my blog only has .5 readers.

Isn't this flyer fascinating?

I'm not questioning the legitimacy of this event, but the name "Commedia Beauregard" made me wonder and caused me to imagine the possibility that a prankster could produce flyers like this just for amusement. I apologize to anyone associated with this production if they take offense.

I realize I can do a search or two and quickly find out if this is legit, but I think I'll leave it as a mystery for now -- it's more fun that way.

Monday, November 01, 2010

Fixed Gear, Off-Road Riding

I've been taking a little cutoff lately that includes a dirt trail. This is pretty fun on the fixed-gear bike. The trail is not technical with only a couple roots and rocks to maneuver around. I had only one pedal strike.

Next, a fixed-gear, off-road tandem?

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Little Things

It's the little things that matter, although big things matter too.

Either way, I changed the brake pads on my fixie (that's what other people call it) and now it stops like someone threw a stick in the front wheel. The close up photo also exposed lots of ugliness that appears when a bike doesn't get cleaned very often.

Old pad

New pad

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

What is this Giant Antenna?

Tell me what this is? I saw it on my ride home. The van had no markings.

It looks like something I've seen when the Fox news station parks at the local lake after a drowning.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Photo Collage

For several months, when I upload photos, I get the "float" attribute included automatically, regardless of the layout I chose. I'll have to look up the easy cure for this. I'm tired of removing "float" from the tags.

The Golden City -- not really, it's just Minneapolis at sunrise.

The Saturday Hiawatha Cyclery ride ate at a place with chandeliers. They'll probably be "full" next time we arrive.

Twirly swirly (overly saturated, grass field under stadium lights)

Minneapolis bus speeding through an intersection (probably has cyclists stuck in the wheel wells)

A red Cadillac that caught my eye

Monday, October 11, 2010

Typical Fall Bike Photo

Here's my contribution to the collection of fall bike photos. I took this on what might be my slowest ride ever to work. My legs are tired.

I got my fixed gear pretty much setup and I look forward to riding it more than my other bikes.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

HC Ride, Saturday, Oct. 10, 2010

Before Saturday's HC ride, I rode to Ft. Snelling and saw a flock of turkeys. I want to call them a herd, because they don't do much flying. Anyway, I expected them to flee when I got close, but they hung around.

We ate at the Aster Cafe. They have great food and coffee in a nice setting.

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Saturday, Oct. 2 HC Ride

I took a strange route to the start of yesterday's HC ride.

Riders are gathering and chatting about the finer points of Nervex lugs and bike routes.

A bike ready for groceries or hunting.

A really nice Raleigh that I shot from the non-drive side on purpose. I've thought about conking the owner of this bike on the head and stealing the bike. It's that nice. The owner keeps wine in the handlebars (pretty smart, huh?).

Some guys got cold before the ride started, so they staged a coup and moved into the sun.

This guy rides a different bike every week.

We ate at Victor's Cafe in Minneapolis. They have fantastic Cuban food.

This is the nastiest port-a-crapper in existence. It was nearly overflowing and that was not the worst of it. But going in one of these beats getting a public indecency charge any day.

Friday, October 01, 2010

Ride Home Photos

I really dread this intersection. The cars from the left are coming off the interstate and they usually pull into the bike crossing without looking as they are preparing for a quick right turn on red while still rolling.

This is on the Vento Bridge --Minneapolis in the background. It was a nice ride home, very nice.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

New Pedals and Bureau of Mines

Old pedals bent.
New pedals not bent. New pedals shiny too.
This is the second set of bent pedals I've replaced this year. I'll attribute it to bad luck and crappy, used parts.

This is the abondoned Bureau of Mines facility in Minneapolis, near Ft. Snelling. It has always fascinated me that this dump is allowed to exist. I bet the cops spend too much time out there running off partying kids and ne'r-do-wells.

This is Coldwater Spring. It's located within the Bureau of Mines facility.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Found Items

I found a Surly beer cooler sleeve on yesterday's ride. If it's yours let me know and then I can think of you when I drink a beer.

A few weeks ago, I found this Park tool kit.

I also found a fire hydrant.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Weekend Photos

We went to a farmers market on Sunday morning. What would you do with all these habeneros? Lots of vendors had baskets of these. I'd take a few, but I don't need a basket of them.

I went on a ride with my wife on Sunday afternoon. It was the best ride I've had in a long time. Here's the fixed gear next to a newish fountain at the Wabun Picnic area near Minnehaha Falls in Minneapolis.

I did not crash and felt more at home on the fixed-gear bike. It needs fenders.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Murphy Ride

This photo didn't do the job I expected. So I'll tell my side of the story. Today turned out to be a beautiful day in many ways. One of which is that the local off-road trails dried out and I rode my favorite -- Murphy Hanrehan in Savage, MN.

This trail is mostly a woodsey sexperience. The trail throws you into a prairie or two and the contrast between woods and prairie is breathtaking. The prairie portions are short and that makes them especially striking.

The only thing that could have improved on the ride was if I had planned ahead and found someone to ride with.

I accidentally type "sexperience" when I meant "experience." I started to correct my error and decided to leave it as a fun malaprop.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Minneapolis Diagonal Trail

I like this view, but I don't take the time to stop and enjoy. I ride through it almost every time I ride my bike to work. I have to watch out as I take the left-hand curve at this intersection -- it's a blind turn and often I see other cyclists coming around corner. If someone is not paying attention, we'll have some bike-on-bike action.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Weekend Things

This is a photo of Jim (Hiawatha Cycles) riding his very specialized tandem. He's got a kiddie crank setup on the stoker position, an Xtracycle installed with a seat for a kid, and he's pulling a baby trailer. He doesn't get going very fast, but it allows him to bring all his kids on the ride. I hope his wife appreciates what gem he is.

This is a photo of an over-the-top cupcake/birthday cake thing. What is that? A snail with legs or a caterpillar carrying a rock on its back?

We ate it anyway.

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Newest Misc. Photos from Bike Rides

I've been taking photos with a new cell phone camera. If I remember to respect the light, it takes pretty good photos. The video is good too, but it's tough to hold such a small device still.

Here's my single-speed bike with a broken freewheel. I discovered this in the first mile of Saturday's Hiawatha ride.

If you look closely at the photo, you will see the freewheel hanging loose. Later in the day, I converted it to a fixed gear and then crashed. Maybe fixed gear riding isn't for me. How can I unlearn 40 some years of coasting whenever I want? If you have some experience with this subject, let me know what you think. I'm not sure it's possible to unlearn very old habits, but I enjoy riding the fixed gear bike and want to make it work for me.

Dramatic skies make better photos. Look at the plants blowing in the strong wind.

This was a sunrise shot with the sun at my back (long shadow).

I turned around and looked into the sun for this photo. Can you see the people down the path? They were kissing when I passed them a couple minutes later. It was about 7 AM.

This was another windy day. I saw quite a few riders on the Minneapolis Light Rail bike path so I pulled out the phone and caught a couple of them then the train rolled by. You can see the riders struggling against the north wind. It was a fun ride in the other direction.

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