Saturday, October 29, 2011

Scott Wayland and the Winky-Eyed Jesus

"..."Looked she cried "When you tilt the pitcher, the eyes open 'n' close!" Back and forth , Alice wiggled the Son of God who winked and winked and winked...
   I felt like I was spinning, losing it, a lost character who'd stumbled into a David Lynch movie. I had to ride it out, stay open, let the narrative unfold."
                                                                       From the "Winky-Eyed Jesus and other Undescribales" by Scott Wayland,  

Scott Wayland aka the "elite, feral recumbent cyclo-tourist" dropped in at Bent Up Cycles today to share  stories from his new book The Winky-Eyed Jesus and Other Undescribales. The book chronicles his 2007 journey across our great country. It's a fun read written from a human perspective. By the time you get to the last few chapters you feel like Scott's an old friend. 

Scott telling his story to a group of enthusiastic recumbent groupies. 

Scott reads "The Winky-Eyed Jesus" excerpt from his book. Funny stuff!!
Trike Squadron leader Glenn Frank joined the recumbent groupies at Bent Up Cycles in No. Hollywood, CA to meet Scott. He is busy pulling out some $'s to buy Dana's latest Bent Up Cycles signature jersey. Bent Up Cycles New Signature Jersey

Before our elite, feral recumbent cyclo-tourist heads off into the sunset he demonstrates his homemade Pepsi can alcohol stove.

Close up this cool little homemade low cost alcohol stove.
Many videos on YouTube demonstrate how to make a this little gem.

Time to finish the last few chapters.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Perfect Ride

Perfect clear, cool autumn day and just a hint of a breeze. It doesn't get better. 

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Not a Perfect Ride but Still Good

Last Sunday I took my Catrike 700 on my usual 40 mile weekend ride. It's a nice ride with a 2,600 foot gain. The last time I left my Catrike Expedition and my dog Betzi at home in favor of a ride on my 700 was three weeks ago. Unlike when I ride my Expedition, on the 700 I push myself and I wanted to get on the rode. Within the first mile I realized that the new rear derailleur cable I installed a few weeks ago had stretched just enough that I didn't have my low gear and on top of that my chain wasn't making it down to the high gear on the rear cassette (nice going dufus always adjust your derailleur shortly after installing a new cable). I pulled over and took a look at the situation and decided to ride on thinking I'd take a break later and make some adjustments (never did).

I was cruising along nicely with the gears I did have and started my first real downhill of the day. I screamed past a spandex clad youngster at 50 miles hour. Dang it I can usually do 55+ mph on this hill, now I miss my high lazy bum you didn't want to take the time to adjust the rear derailleur.

Next I started a steep climb but I was still fresh and didn't miss my low much. The climb was followed my another good downhill run. I make these climbs so I can get an adrenaline rush going down but again not having my high gear kept my speed a little lazy bum you didn't want to take the time to adjust the rear derailleur. As a punishment for being lazy the water bottle I keep behind me popped out of it's water cage towards the end of the downhill and I didn't notice it was missing until about a half mile later (that's what that sound was). It was starting to warm up and I needed that water bottle. I took a short ride uphill to retrieve my precious bottle of H2O only to find that it had sprung a leak but was salvageable.

It's now a good two hours into my ride and it's time for a short break. I check for my power bars and they're not there. Oh...that's right I left them in my Expedition. No problem I'm close to a local bike shop and I'll stop in, say hey, and  buy something to snack on. They're still closed and won't be open for another 15 minutes. I decided to wait because experience has taught me that if I don't eat and drink in a certain manner I tend to cramp up...and that's not fun.

After downing two very dry energy bars I continued on my ride. The weather was warmer then I anticipated and I was not prepared with the proper nutrition to keep my 57 old furnace functioning at maximum level and sure enough in the last couple of miles I felt the ole quads trying to cramp. I eased up my pace and all was well.

The last one third of a mile is a steep, very steep grind up to my home. Without the aid of my lowest gear I didn't want to take a chance grunting my way up the hill only to get cramped lazy bum you didn't want to take the time to adjust the rear derailleur. I called Carrie and she bailed me out with a short ride home.

It wasn't a perfect ride but it is still great to ride. 

When I ride my Expedition (usually with Betzi in tow) I ride relaxed and just watch the world go by and wave to folks. When I put my butt in my 700 I want to ride as hard as my repaired and aging body will let me. The only time I stop pedaling is when I can't keep up with the downhill speed of my trike or I'm taking a break. I get cheap thrills out of passing or at least staying ahead of capable looking riders. I'm 57 years old, take it easy old boy...when I ride the 700 I can't.

PS; Sorry no pictures I forgot my camera. Oh well.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Foggy Autumn Ride

The trees that gave me shade during the summer now pelt me with over sized drops of liquid fog. The moist foggy air condenses on the leaves and the resulting drops have only one place to go...on me. Betrayed I continue my ride hoping that the sun will soon burn away the moisture laden air and warm my cold aching legs.

In true California style I started my ride today under-dressed for the cool foggy morning that laid ahead. With Betzi in tow my cold legs struggled to make the climbs. The sweat I worked up while climbing became my enemy on the windy down hill runs.

Right as I was finishing my ride a glorious white hot orb in the sky defeated the misty gray monster and all was good and warm again.


Monday, October 10, 2011

iPhone GPS Update #2

I think that I have the iPhone set up the way I want it. In addition I now have speakers (Biologic Speakers) so I can listen to some tunes...classic hard rock for climbing and music that's easy on the ears for cruising. 
I took off the RAM mount (iPhone GPS) and put on a Biologic (Biologic iPhone Mountwater proof and shock mount and case. A bit of an investment but I feel that it should be worth it. After all, this whole tech exercise is to prepare for touring. The Motion X GPS (iPhone GPS) has not let me down and it's nice to have a little music on board. With the external speakers, as compared to headphones or earphones, I can still hear the traffic coming up from behind.

Picture of my iPhone in the Biologic case. On the cross member is  the Biologic speaker with an  6 foot earphone extension. The speaker sits below the red steering rod on my Catrike Expedition.  
Brunton Inspire power pack (iPhone GPS) connected to my iPhone with a six foot power cord extension. When riding it's tucked away in the Catrike side bag.

Another look.

My decision to use the the iPhone and the Motion X app for GPS is based on some poor reviews of the newer model Garmins especially the Garmin 800. Why spend the bucks? If the Motion X app fails me on a tour I'm out $3.99 for the app (assuming an app and not a iPhone fail) but I will still have a phone, music and good ole paper maps which I have not forgotten how to read. In addition it's one less device that I have to carry around.

The details:
-Brunton Inspire power pack
-6 foot power cord connecting the power pack to my iPhone
-Biologic Bike Mount for iPhone 4 to protect my iPhone from water and some vibration
-Biologic Cycle Tunes Speakers (replaced with Logitech Speakers 3/26/12  New Speakers)
-Large O Ring from DiNotte Lighting to secure the  speaker. The elastic band that is supplied with the speaker isn't large enough for where I put the speaker.
-6 foot earphone cord connecting the speakers to my iPhone.

Note: The RAM mount is a good mount but the iPhone is left at the mercy of the elements including spray from the front wheels when going through something as mundane as a puddle of water from over irrigated California lawns.

One More Note: I bought an extra Biologic mount (no case), power cord and earphone cord for my Catrike 700. The Biologic iPhone case, speaker and the Brunton power pack transfer easily between my two tirkes

Update 10/17/12 I've used this setup on three rides now and I'm very happy with it. It took a little while to get used to the nuances of using the iPhone for tracking and playing music at the same time. The speaker is a little weak but adequate. Also it's best not to change settings using the touch screen while bouncing around on a rough road.