Thursday, May 31, 2007
Monday, May 28, 2007
We battled the insanity of the bike path crowds through downtown and then headed out towards Max Bell Arena. In some ways the bike paths are a very challenging place to learn to ride a bent with lots of tight 90 deg turns, narrow paths and many trail obstacles [ ie. other users!].
Sarah did well - especially on the climbs. I think the Rocket's upright seating really helps with that and it has pretty benign slow speed handling.
The ride went well and it was a beautiful day in Southern Alberta. Although there was a lot more climbing than my previous 200K the wind was moderate throughout the day. By the end of the ride I was pretty tired and my lack of longer rides became evident again [I was really glad I didn't have an extra 100K to ride!], but I was not nearly as sore/tired after the ride as I was the first time. It is nice to see the conditioning develop and clearly I just need to keep racking up the KMs. Last year 100kms was a typical long ride and that already seems fairly short this year. 200K is quickly becoming normal. Cool. Without the PBP fever in my system there is no huge rush to crack the next rando distance. I'm going to ride a couple more 200Ks and then try my first 300K.
It was nice to wake up Sunday and be able to go for a ride without any major discomfort.
I'll post my ride stats later when I have my bike computer handy, but my average on bike speed was around 23.5kph. Not bad for a 40lbs+ recumbent and a lot of climbing. I will admit I was fantasizing about an uber light rando bike as I crawled up some of the longer climbs!
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Monday, May 21, 2007
I threw on an old Cateye Mitty3 computer. These bike computers keep going and going and going.... I have them on three bikes - love 'em. I am using Paul's Thumbies and Dura Ace bar end shifters to control the gears. Avid brake levers keep the speed under control.
Saturday, May 19, 2007
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
I took the opportunity to adjust the seat bit more in search of the perfect fit. Volae has developed a really smart seat clamp that adjusts with two QRs and completely releases the seat with two other QRs. It makes seat adjustments a snap and when you remove and reinstall the seat it goes back on in exactly the same position.
I adjusted the headset and made sure my disc rotors/calipers were bolted on securely. It is a nice feeling to go over your bike making sure everything is just right. Now I need to get her out on the road for another ride.
Monday, May 14, 2007
Sunday, May 13, 2007
"As I was riding my LHT home yesterday I realized it was about a year since I first got her on the road. Our relationship started on a rocky note when I realized the brake studs were misaligned when they welded them on. That quality control issue and then the 4-5 months I had to wait to get a replacement frame soured me a bit to the Surly Love Cult that seems to pervade the net. However, the long wait for a replacement frame forced me to put a lot of kms on my LHT. By the time I got the replacement frame in I didn’t want to bother swapping components until the winter so I wouldn’t lose any time on the saddle. Then my December Baja tour came together I didn’t want to swap to the new frame right before a big tour and risk having troubles in the middle of nowhere. Finally after Baja I realized I had bonded with my sage green LHT over our several thousand KMs together and I decided to just keep riding her. Anna benefited as she rec’d my warranty frame and swapped the parts from her REI Randonee to a red cherry pearl LHT.
So what do I think about my LHT after a year? It is my most versatile bike and it fits me the best of any bike I have owned. I have been on two tours with my LHT and it has handled long days in the saddle well. I was able to rocket down mountain passes with confidence and I can climb my LHT like a goat on fire – even loaded with gear. When unloaded I can bomb around town with the roadies and then I can go haul a week’s worth of groceries home. I’m very pleased with the Schwalbe Marathon XRs in 35mm width. They seem as fast as the 32mm standard marathons I was running before and they are comfortable. Best of all I have room for fenders AND big tires. The shimano barend shifters and XT rear der shift better than any other bike I have had – I love the friction shifting up front. I managed to get really lucky and hang just the right combination of parts off this frame. It isn’t any one component or just the frame – somehow all of these things have come together to make a very special bike.
I guess what says it all is that if I had to get rid of all my bikes, except for one, I’d keep the LHT.
Keep on trucking….