How do you roll?

Check this video for a sampling of what the bike industry rides. From the high to the low end, cruisers, a tall bike, and BMX was all in the bike check room during Interbike. Many considered that room the *other bike show.”

Shop bikes are usually some unique combination built from the back room, found in a parts bin, with an old frame, solid wheels, and various gadgets. For a time, I didn’t ride a bike that wasn’t equipped with at least one Sun Tour part.

So what do you ride? How do you roll? What’s the favorite bike you’ve built up?

My current fave is the Modal.



The calmest road in America

During Interbike earlier this year, we spent a morning riding the strip, the bike expressway, and hearing from a local and a RTC employee about cycling in Vegas.

The road featured in the video is one of the calmest in America. It’s engineered to slow cars down and accommodate cyclists. I think they pipe in the sounds of songbirds, but couldn’t confirm it. If you do ride the strip, take up a whole lane like we did to let the cabbies know you’re there.

As I wrote earlier, “It’s surprising, yes, but Vegas is a bike-friendly town.”

Notes



Amazing Race 12…on Bakfiets!

Amazing Race

I was watching the Amazing Race tonight and saw 2 segments in Holland being hugger-focused! They had to find city bikes, and ride them 5 miles. Then they had to put one person in the front of a Bakfiets and roll to the finish. Now everybody in the states is going to want one. Amzing Race



Damn I want that

Alfine Hub Byron will tell you that I NEED to have matched wheels. It’s a bit of an obsession, but I can’t help it. Anyway - I’ve been shopping for a good internal geared hub to run on my SS Cross bike. I’ve got black hubs - so I need black Internal gear setup. The only one I know of is the much sought-after, but non-US available Shimano Alfine group. I’ve found the disc compliant model (I don’t need disc) in some obscure German site - Alfine Hub in Black. With the weak dollar and that fact that my German sucks if something were to go wrong with the order - is it worth it? Anybody else got a lead?



Spatial Relationships and the Perfect Pack

Spatial relationships and analysis are important when packing a travel bike (at least to me they are). Where Pam spent about a 1/2 hour packing her bike, I spent about 2.5 hours making sure everything lined up, the space was used to its potential, and the package would arrive safe and intact.

Both bikes did arrived safely and with no damage. However my packed items shifted all over the place and Pam’s was in pristine condition. I’m now deconstructing what possibly went wrong with my pack and she’ll just pack like whatever next time. I explained to Pam that it was a guy thing to do the perfect pack and I had to get it right.

modal_packed.jpg

Notes on the packing

  • No worries with titanium and no paint
  • TSA did not open either case
  • That’s coffee in the upper right corner and Senor Muggy in the bottom right
  • There’s only one way to pack the Modal because of the extra wide chainstays that accommodate the dropouts
  • Scratches are part of it. I think of them now as a patina.

I think my pack went wrong because I put too much stuff in there. I was trying to get it right to 50 pounds with my clothes, shoes, and schwag we got from the event we attended.

The netting serves no purpose other than to thwart the TSA from poking around in the case. The thinking is that they’ll just glance at it, if at all, and move on to the next piece of luggage. It seems to have worked.

Suggestions

The 12” edge-pull case is well made, tough, and durable. For short trips across an airport, it’s ok, but the weight at that angle on your skinny-cyclists arms can get very tedious for a longer haul across terminals. I’d like to have a 4-caster option with a pull tether so I could pull it around an airport on the casters instead of dragging it behind me or pushing it. The Dahon Airporter case has the same problem with 2 rollerblade wheels.

One caution: the caster fits right into the gap between the elevator car and the floor at Seatac. I pulled the case towards me sideways out of the elevator, the caster was trapped in that space, and nearly ripped right out of the case.

I caught it in time and it now has a nice travel bend to it. I decided a slightly bent caster was like a nice scratch. It all adds to the travel patina noted above.



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