Brakeless fixie scofflaw!

April 27, 2011 at 23:12 | Posted in bicycles | Leave a comment
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Either I am going soft, or having the Radish is metamorphosing me into a full on European-style utility cyclist, as when I left work tonight it was a bit chilly in my cycling shorts and jersey, and for the first few minutes I thought longingly of how much more comfortable I would be all rugged up and riding the Radish.

However after a few minutes I warmed up and started to enjoy myself. However that enjoyment was curtailed by a slight wobbling, loose sensation on the right side of the handlebars. Immediately my mind jumped to this incident, also on a fixie.

I cautiously experimented with where it might be coming from, and was able to ascertain it was not the actual bars, but the brake lever seemed to be coming loose. I continued to ride, putting less pressure on the hoods, but it continued to loosen further. I started to get worried that if I needed to brake hard the whole thing might come off with unpleasant consequences. I therefore switched to riding on the tops, and refrained from using the front brake at all whilst generally riding more sedately.

I reached the first set of lights on the cycleway after the Sydney Harbour Bridge, and as I rode up to them I saw the opposing car traffic signals go red. Excellent; I was about to get a green. I therefore continued into the intersection before realising my error; the light phasing was not what I was expected and I was suddenly in the path of oncoming traffic. Ooops. I quickly got across and out of the way, thankfully clearing the junction in good time and not even getting honked. Not at all clever though, and definitely not a good look.

I did smile wryly to myself afterwards, though – blasting through a red light on a fixie with defective brakes. I managed to tick a few boxes on the stereotype tonight.

Anyway, I have to stop there, as I need to go out and sort out the bike for tomorrow. Not to tighten the brake lever. But to fit some spoke cards…

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