Monday, February 1, 2010

Bikes Outside: Bikes on Ice

This Monday we have a couple of the bikes that stopped off at Jo Jo's for this past Friday morning's Ice Bike to Work breakfast. A total of six people showed up according to the sign-in sheet. Friday morning was bitter and windy, well below the day's predicted high of 22 degrees Fahrenheit, which probably affected turnout. I arrived on the late side, so there were only two other bikes present.

Dave's nice Rockhopper is very well equipped for just about anything. I'm pretty sure most of the cars I have owned have had fewer electronics on board. Legend has it that Specialized switched to oversized tubing in recent years just so they could write their name larger.

I remember digging that left hand bar-end mirror tree on Kevin's Trek at another CCBA event and wondering how far I could go with that concept, clamping more and more bar ends and mirrors to one another until my bike either had aluminum antlers or became the human-powered version of a 60's Mod scooter. It may be for the best that I not admit how much thought I've devoted to the idea of building such a bicycle. Of course the mod bicycle would need a Rocker-style counterpart, which I also may or may not have thought about between one and fifty times.

A minute into my Friday morning ride, I discovered that some water from last Mondays rain-soaked ride had apparently found its way into my cable housings and frozen there. My rear derailleur (interesting note: spell-check only accepts the French spelling) failed to shift at all and my rear brake would stay clamped against the rim after releasing the lever (arguably a safer failure than not working at all). Luckily, the front brake was 100% functional and the sluggish front derailleur could be coaxed into position with a quick toe-tap. I decided to experimentally spray some lock de-icer in the cable housings as a dessicant/cable lube to free things up. I've been riding my internally-geared Robin Hood since then, so I have to take another sub-freezing ride on the cargo bike to see if this actually worked (it functions perfectly well in the heated indoors, of course).

My late morning and afternoon left me feeling thoroughly spent, so I skipped Critical Mass this month. Did anybody go?

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