Monday, July 26, 2010

Bikes Outside: Think Globally, Park Locally

Fans of Shakespeare, when they aren't dropping clever bardian quips that sail over my head, dream of someday making a pilgrimage to the legendary Globe Theater, just off Park Street in London. As it happens, travel budget restrictions dictate that this midsummer Monday finds us instead on Hartford's Park Street a few blocks west of the under-cherished Lyric Theater looking at a Globe of a more prosaic sort.

Don't take that "prosaic" comment as a slam, mind you, this is a very nice commuter bike. I don't mean to damn it with faint praise. It's both unfair and pointless to compare any bike to a world-famous theater. They serve different purposes with very little overlap (see how informative I am? I'll bet that last sentence cleared up a ton...)

Anyway, today, across from the Park Branch of the Hartford Public Library we find one very well-appointed Specialized Globe, with lights, fenders, rack, bouncy fork and springy seatpost to help tame the urban jungle with maximum efficiency. I doubt it's the lightest thing around, but I'll wager it's mighty comfortable.

If memory serves, this is only the second Bike Outside that rocks a dynohub. I've been thinking about generator hubs a lot lately. I've been itching to build a new wheelset for the cargo bike, and the notion of seeing better at night without using batteries is very appealing. I will have a long time to mull this over, as generator hubs are pricey, and disc brake generator hubs (as the Yuba sports a front disc these days) are jaw-droppingly pricey. As always, I'm willing to help test and review any parts manufacturers will send my way (Schmidt, Shimano, I'm looking in your direction...) Exposure on the Beat Bike Blog can potentially introduce products to dozens of mildly interested cyclists!

Have a good week.
Ride safe!


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