Thursday, June 22, 2017

An Extra Pound for Longer Rides

0.9 pounds (408grams) to be exact.
For longer rides or rides on isolated roads I take some extra gear that adds up to 0.9 pounds (408 grams). Well worth the peace of mind

All the extra gear is stowed in an titanium cup covered with an old cut off sock.

The extra stuff fits in nice and neat.

A brake cable, derailleur cable, one brake pad set and a chain repair kit stuffed into old 1.5" (40mm) tube sections. Also included is a second spare rear tire tube (I always carry 1 rear and 2 front spare tubes) and a spare DiNotte O ring I use to secure my flag. The titanium cup is used for filling water bottles at drinking fountains. 

Cables, brake pads and chain kit stuffed in tubes.

Brake pads and chain kid unstuffed. Included in my chain kit is a Park Master Link plier with a cut down handle.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

When Cycling Meets Sailing

Cyclists powering New Zealands hydraulics that control the wing, foils and other systems in the 35th Americas Cup Challenge now under way for the next few weeks. All the other boats are using the traditional hand cranks.



Sunday, May 28, 2017

Cruising the Central Coast

Recumbent cycling gives us laid back riders a unique perspective of our surroundings. And when your surroundings are the Central Coast it's not hard to want to slow down and take it all in. 
Taking a break along HWY 46


I've finally given in to the slower pace of living on the Central Coast. With Tubus rack and Small Ortlieb Panniers mounted I'm now in cruising mode. I'm now able to carry extra clothes and lunch for longer relaxing rides along the coast and valleys. The extra weight with all my stuff loaded in the panniers (including a pair of walking shoes) adds up to under 8 pounds (4.5 Kg). I plan on spending more time meandering through wine country where the extra storage space will come in handy. Wine bottles take up a lot of room. 

My Catrike 700 is still fast and nibble as the extra weight is kept low and the Tubus rack is cambered in towards the top of the rack bringing the weight of the panniers towards the centerline of the trike. Now I'm better prepared for time off the 700 when I may want to take a break and go down to the beach or simply explore a bit on foot before continuing my ride.

Before moving to the Central Coast most of my rides were on busy suburban roads with an occasional break at a park. Back then my focus was on speed and challenging myself. There wasn't much to see back in suburbia but concrete, asphalt and track houses. That all changed for Carrie and me when we moved to the Central Coast. 








Friday, May 19, 2017

Thule Roof Rack, Seasucker and Trike

I sold my trike carrying Ford Escape and we're down to only one car. I wanted a way to carry the 700 on top of our Ford C-Max. It's not always practical to stuff it inside the C-Max. Here's pics of what I came up with.

The flush mount Thule Roof Rack is installed so my front tires fit nicely in between the racks. A SeaSucker suction cup holds the rear tire in place. Note that I put my rear rack on my 700 in preparation for rides through wine country. You never know what you'll end up coming back with after a visit to the Central Coast wineries. More on that later.

A closer look.

Hook and loop straps (the same DiNotte straps that hold my batteries) hold the tires to the Thule Rack. For long trips I use heavy duty straps with buckles.

SeaSucker rear tire holder. I don't have enough faith in suction cups to do the entire job, front and back, of holding my trike down. No harm will be done, other then a little bouncing around, if the rear cup looses suction. 

Enough room for two trikes. Just need an extra rear suction cup.


By old Ford Escape with my old Catrike Expedition on top.



Monday, April 24, 2017

Harmony

Taking a break in Harmony on the Central Coast

Old Post Office

Harmony Cellars Winery

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

I Don't Like Guardrails

I'm always scanning for places to bail out in the event of an errant car or truck. If there is ever a time I might feel a bit uncomfortable it's when riding next to a guardrail. Fortunately where I ride there are few guardrails and wide shoulders. Also cyclists are a common sight along the Central Coast. Safety in numbers.


Thursday, April 13, 2017

By the Bay

Hanging in San Fransisco. I would not ride a trike or bike in the heart of this City. Riding a trike on the downtown streets of SF would be a real challenge to say the least.


Saturday, April 1, 2017

Down to One Car

Down to one car. At least for now.

I'm getting good at stuffing the 700 into our Ford C-Max plug in. The plug in C-Max has a rather large battery tucked away in the trunk. It would be easier without the battery taking up so much room but I've managed to make it work. After becoming confident in my "stuffing the trike into a small car skills" I sold the Ford Escape that has severed me well for 10 years.

I'm considering an all small electric vehicle (or possibly a e-assist trike) for myself for getting around town. For now we'll just give it a go with one car. 



Goodbye old beast of burden.
Picture from January 2011
Byron's been living on his own for the last three years while studying film. And Leili, now 17, has been living in San Francisco for the last 2 years and dancing with the SF Ballet. So it's just Carrie and me and no need for 2 cars.


Saturday, March 18, 2017

New Low Gear

After a year of cycling on the Central Coast it has become clear that I need at least one more low gear for some of the steeper roads of the Central Coast. I replaced my small 28t ring with a 26t small ring. This required a change in the large chainring from a 52t to a 50t and taking two links off the chain to maintain good chain tension. Even with that done and using a 36/11 cassette the rear derailleur is maxed out. Going small (small chainring)/small (small cassette cog) leaves the chain sagging a bit. But since there is no reason to go small/small it's not a concern.

I added a inner chainring guard to keep the chain in line when dropping down from the 39t to the 26t. Under normal riding conditions with a well tuned derailleur dropping the chain from the 39t to the 26t works fine. However experience has taught me that when rattling around on rough roads the chain can drop off the small chainring while shifting. Therefore the addition of the inner chainring guard. The extra weight is minimal.

The outer guard is to protect me from poking myself and Carrie when the boom and chainring is between the front seats when the trike is loaded in the car. It also serves a second purpose-it shuts down the roadies who like to complain about the dangers of getting impaled on the exposed chainring.

The sacrifice I make on the high end will be made up on the low end with happier legs on the climbs.

Inner chain guard (Volae Granny Guard), 26t, 39t, 50t and Outer chain guard (Driveline)

The small Salsa (on left) and Blackspire (in middle) chainrings have an asymmetrical offset of the teeth. It's just enough to cause the chain to drop or get wedged between chainrings depending on the way you install them. The Vuelta (on right) chainring teeth are centered on the chainring and allow for smooth shifting on the FSA crank.



Crank mounted, two chain links removed, derailleur lowered, cable adjusted and chain lubed. Ready to ride.


Using a 35/622  rear tire (for rougher roads)


Using a 28/622  rear tire





Sunday, March 12, 2017

Kojak and Chip Seal

In my last post from March 10th I stated that I usually avoid riding north of Cambria on Highway 1 because of the chip seal. Well I rode north for the the second time in a row. I wanted to try the ride using the Kojak on the rear at 60psi on the rough road (see Speed, Comfort and Tires 8/3/16). Using the Kojak on the rear smoothed out the chip seal a bit. But chip seal (even though mitigated by CalTrans) is still chip seal. There's no doubt it wears you out faster. But the Central Coast is beautiful and worth an occasional ride North of Cambria.


Kojak 35/622 on the rear while keeping the Durano 28/406s on the front.

Destination ahead, San Simeon Pier.

San Simeon Pier, Time for a snack.

Friday, March 10, 2017

San Simeon


I headed North of Cambria on Highway 1 for a change. The chip seal north of Cambria, even though mitigated, is still a bit rough. It's not so much the rough ride as it is the constant vibration, especially at higher speeds. After awhile you get used to it. At least it's not nearly as bad as when some brain dead engineers at CalTrans back in 2013 decided chip seal on a popular bicycle route was a good idea. 

Using 28mm tires at low pressure on my 700 makes the ride enjoyable and still reasonably fast.





Friday, March 3, 2017

Taking Advantage of the Sunny Days

No rain, no wind, blue sky and a nice 65 degrees. Some clouds expected this weekend followed by more days of winter sun. 
Time to get some miles in and enjoy the Central Coast.



Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Not a Cloud in the Sky

Finally nothing but blue sky for a few days. Although a stiff breeze makes pedaling a little more demanding it's good to be out enjoying the Central Coast sunshine



Friday, February 17, 2017

Rain, Rain, Rain

 I'll have to wait until Thursday. Oh well.
My 700 will have to stay dry in the garage.
With all the rain this season I've had more then enough time to maintain my 700. It's a well maintained trike that's been spending a lot of time in the garage this rainy season.



Watching the rain



Sunday, February 12, 2017

Central Coast Sunshine

First ride this month. Just two much rain lately. But the sun made it out this morning.






Friday, February 3, 2017

Red Brake Cable Housing

It's raining today, so I did a little trike maintenance. I added a little color to my brakes with red cable housing.



I also replaced the foam grips, hand rests and derailleur cables. The ole 700 also got a good cleaning while it was up on the work stand.