Cargo bikes and vintage tea-cups…

October 20, 2010 at 20:49 | Posted in bicycles | Leave a comment
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On Monday I needed to drop off a six-piece vintage tea service somewhere on the way to work. So I boxed it up carefully and strapped it onto the back of the Radish, and off I went.

It was a lovely morning, and I was cruising along. It’s all become much more pleasurable since I fixed the gears. You may remember I have been having lots of problems with them. Well, I discovered the cause. The gears are fine; however the quick release on the rear wheel has a tendency to come open. It’s hard to spot, as it’s obscured by the panniers. This means the rear wheel wobbles about, throwing out the gear alignment. (And yes, ahem, that does mean I’ve been riding around on this bike for months with the rear wheel basically about to fall off. Luckily the back is so heavy it never lifts off the ground, otherwise things could have got interesting!)

Anyway, I’ve tightened the thing tighter than a tight thing and all is now well. As I went up Anzac Bridge I passed several other commuters, decked out in cycling clothes on smart bikes, and it just made me smile so much. Not because I was faster (life is not a race), nor because I was wearing jeans (I wear cycling stuff often enough). No, it was the fact that I had a vintage tea service on the back of my bike. Somehow that just tickled me as I cruised past various people struggling up the hill.

The other thing I tried is riding down the ramp at the northern end of the SHB. Not the whole thing; just the last ramp. I’d thought about it a few times, and reckoned that the radish was the bike I was least likely to do an endo on. It’s also the one with the most weight and rubber on the road, so would perhaps be most in control and easiest to slow down. There was no-one else around, so I tried it. Whoa. Very wierd; that ramp feels much steeper when you’re riding down it on a stretch beach cruiser. Definitely not a good feeling; goodness knows how the guys who scream down the whole thing manage it. I shan’t be doing that again…

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