Sunday, February 22, 2009

My set of wheels

Here are some pictures of my bicycle. It was a re-cycled 26" Mountain Bike I got from Western Sydney Cycling Network. These people save old or redundant bicycles and re-cycle them into useful machines again. The bicycle you see is being used to commute to TAFE, 3 days a week and is ridden to visit friends, go to church, going shopping and also being ridden for the sheer heck of it.

Martin's Bicycle (front view) 22/02/2009

In this front view you can see the Blackburn MTH-1 Front rack with a Tioga Rack bag on top. Alloy riser handlebars give me a more upright riding position - about 75 to 80 degrees, so not quite a true 90-degree comfort bicycle. The gel seat is from Tioga. It's quite good for short rides, but your backside can get sweaty on longer (+2 hours) rides. More breathable shorts will probably help, but the ultimate would be to get a Brooks Leather saddle. Just visible is my front light - the original plastic mounting was rubbish and took a couple of weeks to disintegrate. Now it is just cable-tied to the handlebar and stem. The two-prong stand was an investment. When I got the bicycle, it didn't have a kick-stand. The weight of the panniers and other equipment would make it impossible for this machine to use an ordinary lean-to kick-stant. I am told that this is the same type as what Australia Post uses on their bicycles, which are required to carry up to 45 kg's of mail. I can vouch that they do what they are supposed to.


Tioga one-piece rear panniers. Definately NOT an up-market item, but I have successfully taken all my TAFE books and clothes in these the 6km each-way commute in them. The rack is an alloy touring model from Tioga. The light on the rear rack is a Blackburn Mars 2.0 - in my opinion the best rear light. It has two bright yellow LED's which flash side-ways. Whilst these are mostly hidden by the panniers, the extra lighting is useful for being seen at night. I also wear a hydration pack whilst riding, which carries two red flashing lights available from Dick Smith Electronics for $5 each. The seat-post mounting is rubbush, but they can be worn on your belt, pants or (as I do) on your hydration pack, which they do beautifully. From the rear I am lit up light a Christmas tree, which will hopefully mean I won't get run over whilst on the road!

Since these pictures were taken, I have bought a rear frame bag from ALDI. This was a great little bargain, and now it holds my tool-kit, and I plan to use it to carry a spare inner-tube too.

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